Best german history books according to redditors

We found 2,040 Reddit comments discussing the best german history books. We ranked the 658 resulting products by number of redditors who mentioned them. Here are the top 20.

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Top Reddit comments about German History:

u/Fandorin · 810 pointsr/worldnews

I don't need to see it. I was born Kharkov, Ukraine.

In 1940, the NKVD killed about 22,000 Polish officers in cold blood in the Katyn Forest. These were unarmed prisoners.

In 1941, about 15000 Jews were rounded up by the Nazis and brought to Dobrytsky Yar, where they were killed. The parents were shot, the kids were thrown in to the pits to freeze to death among the corpses of their parents to save bullets.

I played in both forests when I was a kid, completely ignorant of the history. What people need to internalize is that neither the Nazis or the Soviet or ISIS now are monsters. They are ordinary men, and ordinary men are capable of doing these things under the right conditions. To dehumanize them is to forget this and forget that any of us could be on either the receiving end or the giving end.

Edit -

u/methshin · 626 pointsr/worldnews

For all the people condemning this bookkeeper, I recommend reading a book call Ordinary Men: Reserve Police Battalion 101 and the final solution in Poland

It'll put into perspective that if you were in 1930's Germany, there's a good chance you'd be a Nazi, and if the opportunity to become a bookkeeper came up, you'd jump at the opportunity.

u/TheHuscarl · 225 pointsr/explainlikeimfive

The Clean Wehrmacht myth is a blatant lie. The Wehrmacht were repeatedly involved in war crimes, including the extermination of undesirables, and at the very least most, if not all, members were aware that their government was pursuing a campaign of violence against civilians and had purged undesirables (such as cripples and mentally ill) from society back home. The Wehrmacht may have been normal men, but that does not mean they are free of the blame for what occurred during World War 2.

Here are some resources regarding the Clean Wehrmacht Myth:

I'd also add Ordinary Men to that list, as it's a very interesting study/discussion of how plain people like you and me can become bloodthirsty exterminators of other people in the right circumstances.

Edit: Done replying to comments in this thread, it's exhausting. None of the argumentation is new. To quote the Duke of Wellington, "they came on in the same old way...". The materials are there for you to explore and read. You can form your own judgments based on facts and rigorous research, that's the beauty of a free and open society, the kind of society Nazi Germany was actively trying to prevent. The reason the Clean Wehrmacht myth needs to be refuted is because, as I've said in another comment, it presents an ignorant view of history that allows us to avoid the hard truth, learned largely from World War Two, that ordinary men who would otherwise be considered honorable, decent people can take part in atrocious crimes or, at the very least, hear about them and be permissive or even supportive of them. If we deny that, we can't learn to prevent such things happening again.

Edit 2: Honestly last thing, I just want to add a comment by one of the mods of r/askhistorians specifically relating to this subject. It's honestly the best comment on Reddit I've ever seen regarding this subject and it has a list of plenty of resources for those who want to investigate this issue further:

u/ColonelRuffhouse · 180 pointsr/todayilearned

This is stated over and over recently, and it's largely false. Yes, there was some drug use in the Nazi military, but mostly among fighter pilots and tank crews. The book Blitzed by Norman Ohler is a classic example of the overstatement of drug use in Nazi Germany, and this review just tears it to shreds. I'd really recommend reading the whole thing, but a few choice excerpts are:

> The use of methamphetamine was common, he argues, particularly in the form of “Pervitin”. The drug, [Ohler] says, was manufactured in huge quantities: 35m tablets were, for example, ordered for the western campaign in 1940. This seems an impressive figure, until you recall that more than two and a quarter million troops were involved, making an average of around 15 tablets per soldier for the entire operation. Given the concentration on supplying tank crews with the drug, this means that the vast majority of troops didn’t take any at all.

And continued:

> Ohler goes much further than claiming that methamphetamine was central to the German military effort, however. He claims that its use was universal among the civilian population of Germany, too... This sweeping generalisation about a nation of 66 to 70 million people has no basis in fact. No doubt a number of Germans took, or were even prescribed, opium derivatives for medical conditions, or took them to alleviate the growing stress of living in a country that by mid-1944 was being invaded from all sides and buckling under the strain of intense aerial bombardment. But to claim that all Germans, or even a majority of them, could only function on drugs in the Third Reich is wildly implausible.

The author makes his central point, and perfectly illustrates why I hate the overstatement of drug use in Nazi Germany:

> What’s more, it is morally and politically dangerous. Germans, the author hints, were not really responsible for the support they gave to the Nazi regime, still less for their failure to rise up against it. This can only be explained by the fact that they were drugged up to the eyeballs. No wonder this book has been a bestseller in Germany.

To imply that using meth 'stripped the Nazis of empathy' is to imply that not only everyone who was involved in Nazi atrocities was somehow not responsible for their actions and on meth constantly, but to also imply that similar atrocities are impossible unless the perpetrators are on drugs or in an altered mental state. The lesson of Nazi Germany and the Holocaust is that normal people committed those acts, just like you and me. A good book which delves deeper into this topic is Ordinary Men by Christopher Browning. I wish people would stop propagating this nonsense and do proper research.

u/MasochisticMeese · 123 pointsr/worldnews

You have to remember that Hitler was appointed chancellor by a democratically elected president. Genocide doesn't just happen in a week, nor does change.

Relevant reads

u/wiking85 · 103 pointsr/worldnews

Or get transferred to the front, which was a death sentence. Also it isn't like the SS or Army advertised that there would be no punishment, plus they would force the person declining to publicly step out with the rest of his unit and shame him for it, which in the military culture of honor/masculinity was a huge deterrent. It's not as if they made it psychologically easy, but then capitalized on that acquisence to make people commit crimes and not complain about it or protest because they had bought in by not stepping out. Rather diabolical how they used psychology against their own people to get them to do horrible crimes.

u/erdingerchamp66 · 98 pointsr/AskHistorians

I agree with both of the other commenters, but thought some perspective might perhaps be helpful.

In his highly acclaimed work Bloodlands, Timothy Snyder estimates that 3.1 million Soviet POWs were murdered by the Nazis through forced starvation as a part of Generalplan Ost. The USHMM estimates that about 1.7 million people were murdered in the Operation Reinhard camps, while another 1.1 million were murdered at the Auschwitz camps.

While many, many more people were murdered as part of the Holocaust via open air shootings, starvation, etc., it is not inaccurate to recognize that the Nazis killed more Soviet POWs through forced starvation than they did through the killing centers most people generally associate with the Holocaust.

u/EnlightenedMind_420 · 77 pointsr/politics

I've been posting the amazon link to that book at least once a day for the last month or two :).

Thank you for picking a superb section to post the actual text so people can see exactly why I'm so much in favor of ALL Americans reading this particular book right now. This isn't something that has never been seen before. Sure, it has never been seen like this in the United States, but we have seen it all before. Less than a century ago in fact, back in the 1930's, over in Germany, there was this guy you may have heard of, his name was Adolph Hitler....


u/I_am_a_BalbC · 76 pointsr/todayilearned

Battle for Castle Itter Wiki entry

Itter's prisoners were freed by units of the American 103rd Infantry Division of General Anthony McAuliffe on May 5, 1945.

The next day, the American units, including 23rd Tank Battalion of the U.S. 12th Armored Division under the command of Capt. John C. ‘Jack’ Lee, Jr., the former prisoners themselves, and anti-Nazi elements of the Wehrmacht under the command of Major Josef ‘Sepp’ Gangl, who died in the battle fought alongside the German guards against attacking SS elements until reinforcements arrived.

If you want to buy the book, here's the Amazon link.

May 1945. Hitler is dead, and the Third Reich little more than smoking rubble. No GI wants to be the last man killed in action against the Nazis. But for cigar-chewing, rough-talking, hard-drinking, hard-charging Captain Jack Lee and his men, there is one more mission: rescue fourteen prominent French prisoners held in an SS-guarded castle high in the Austrian Alps.

It's a dangerous mission, but Lee has help from a decorated German Wehrmacht officer and his men, who voluntarily join the fight.

Based on personal memoirs, author interviews, and official American, German, and French histories, The Last Battle is the nearly unbelievable story of the most improbable battle of World War II-a tale of unlikely allies, bravery, cowardice, and desperate combat between implacable enemies.

u/Baloney-Tugboat · 68 pointsr/politics

I recommend everyone read Richard Evans' 3-part series on the Rise and Fall of the Third Reich, especially the first book about the rise of the movement. There's so many parallels between then and what we're seeing now in the US it chills me to the bone.

u/PancakesHouse · 67 pointsr/politics

I posted this in another thread, but going to post it again here since it's relevant.


I feel like we should be mailing textbooks/memoirs on fascism/authoritarianism to our representatives...

I thought about organizing a gofundme to send the same book to all Republican representatives (senate and congress) from Amazon, but I think it would be more effective if it was sent from individual constituents in the rep's districts. I personally feel powerless since all my representatives are democrat, but I think it would send a really powerful message if people in red districts sent copies of books directly from Amazon. It would only cost around $10 to do that, and you can include a gift message with your address and why you're sending it.

People smarter than me probably have better suggestions, and could even point out passages that should be highlighted and bookmarked, but here are a few suggestions off the top of my head:

u/Dear_Occupant · 63 pointsr/history

The transformation of the Weimar Republic into the Third Reich was gradual.

> "What happened here was the gradual habituation of the people, little by little, to being governed by surprise; to receiving decisions deliberated in secret; to believing that the situation was so complicated that the government had to act on information which the people could not understand, or so dangerous that, even if the people could not understand it, it could not be released because of national security. And their sense of identification with Hitler, their trust in him, made it easier to widen this gap and reassured those who would otherwise have worried about it.

> "This separation of government from people, this widening of the gap, took place so gradually and so insensibly, each step disguised (perhaps not even intentionally) as a temporary emergency measure or associated with true patriotic allegiance or with real social purposes. And all the crises and reforms (real reforms, too) so occupied the people that they did not see the slow motion underneath, of the whole process of government growing remoter and remoter.

> "You will understand me when I say that my Middle High German was my life. It was all I cared about. I was a scholar, a specialist. Then, suddenly, I was plunged into all the new activity, as the university was drawn into the new situation; meetings, conferences, interviews, ceremonies, and, above all, papers to be filled out, reports, bibliographies, lists, questionnaires. And on top of that were the demands in the community, the things in which one had to, was ‘expected to’ participate that had not been there or had not been important before. It was all rigmarole, of course, but it consumed all one’s energies, coming on top of the work one really wanted to do. You can see how easy it was, then, not to think about fundamental things. One had no time."

> "Those," I said, "are the words of my friend the baker. ‘One had no time to think. There was so much going on.’"

> "To live in this process is absolutely not to be able to notice it—please try to believe me—unless one has a much greater degree of political awareness, acuity, than most of us had ever had occasion to develop. Each step was so small, so inconsequential, so well explained or, on occasion, ‘regretted,’ that, unless one were detached from the whole process from the beginning, unless one understood what the whole thing was in principle, what all these ‘little measures’ that no ‘patriotic German’ could resent must some day lead to, one no more saw it developing from day to day than a farmer in his field sees the corn growing. One day it is over his head.

> "How is this to be avoided, among ordinary men, even highly educated ordinary men? Frankly, I do not know. I do not see, even now. Many, many times since it all happened I have pondered that pair of great maxims, Principiis obsta and Finem respice—‘Resist the beginnings’ and ‘Consider the end.’ But one must foresee the end in order to resist, or even see, the beginnings. One must foresee the end clearly and certainly and how is this to be done, by ordinary men or even by extraordinary men? Things might have. And everyone counts on that might.

> "Your ‘little men,’ your Nazi friends, were not against National Socialism in principle. Men like me, who were, are the greater offenders, not because we knew better (that would be too much to say) but because we sensed better. Pastor Niemöller spoke for the thousands and thousands of men like me when he spoke (too modestly of himself) and said that, when the Nazis attacked the Communists, he was a little uneasy, but, after all, he was not a Communist, and so he did nothing; and then they attacked the Socialists, and he was a little uneasier, but, still, he was not a Socialist, and he did nothing; and then the schools, the press, the Jews, and so on, and he was always uneasier, but still he did nothing. And then they attacked the Church, and he was a Churchman, and he did something—but then it was too late."

> "Yes," I said.

> "You see," my colleague went on, "one doesn’t see exactly where or how to move. Believe me, this is true. Each act, each occasion, is worse than the last, but only a little worse. You wait for the next and the next. You wait for one great shocking occasion, thinking that others, when such a shock comes, will join with you in resisting somehow. You don’t want to act, or even talk, alone; you don’t want to ‘go out of your way to make trouble.’ Why not?—Well, you are not in the habit of doing it. And it is not just fear, fear of standing alone, that restrains you; it is also genuine uncertainty.

> "Uncertainty is a very important factor, and, instead of decreasing as time goes on, it grows. Outside, in the streets, in the general community, ‘everyone’ is happy. One hears no protest, and certainly sees none. You know, in France or Italy there would be slogans against the government painted on walls and fences; in Germany, outside the great cities, perhaps, there is not even this. In the university community, in your own community, you speak privately to your colleagues, some of whom certainly feel as you do; but what do they say? They say, ‘It’s not so bad’ or ‘You’re seeing things’ or ‘You’re an alarmist.’

> "And you are an alarmist. You are saying that this must lead to this, and you can’t prove it. These are the beginnings, yes; but how do you know for sure when you don’t know the end, and how do you know, or even surmise, the end? On the one hand, your enemies, the law, the regime, the Party, intimidate you. On the other, your colleagues pooh-pooh you as pessimistic or even neurotic. You are left with your close friends, who are, naturally, people who have always thought as you have.

> "But your friends are fewer now. Some have drifted off somewhere or submerged themselves in their work. You no longer see as many as you did at meetings or gatherings. Informal groups become smaller; attendance drops off in little organizations, and the organizations themselves wither. Now, in small gatherings of your oldest friends, you feel that you are talking to yourselves, that you are isolated from the reality of things. This weakens your confidence still further and serves as a further deterrent to—to what? It is clearer all the time that, if you are going to do anything, you must make an occasion to do it, and then you are obviously a troublemaker. So you wait, and you wait.

> "But the one great shocking occasion, when tens or hundreds or thousands will join with you, never comes. That’s the difficulty. If the last and worst act of the whole regime had come immediately after the first and smallest, thousands, yes, millions would have been sufficiently shocked—if, let us say, the gassing of the Jews in ’43 had come immediately after the ‘German Firm’ stickers on the windows of non-Jewish shops in ’33. But of course this isn’t the way it happens. In between come all the hundreds of little steps, some of them imperceptible, each of them preparing you not to be shocked by the next. Step C is not so much worse than Step B, and, if you did not make a stand at Step B, why should you at Step C? And so on to Step D.

> "And one day, too late, your principles, if you were ever sensible of them, all rush in upon you. The burden of self-deception has grown too heavy, and some minor incident, in my case my little boy, hardly more than a baby, saying ‘Jewish swine,’ collapses it all at once, and you see that everything, everything, has changed and changed completely under your nose. The world you live in—your nation, your people—is not the world you were born in at all. The forms are all there, all untouched, all reassuring, the houses, the shops, the jobs, the mealtimes, the visits, the concerts, the cinema, the holidays. But the spirit, which you never noticed because you made the lifelong mistake of identifying it with the forms, is changed. Now you live in a world of hate and fear, and the people who hate and fear do not even know it themselves; when everyone is transformed, no one is transformed. Now you live in a system which rules without responsibility even to God. The system itself could not have intended this in the beginning, but in order to sustain itself it was compelled to go all the way.

> "You have gone almost all the way yourself. Life is a continuing process, a flow, not a succession of acts and events at all. It has flowed to a new level, carrying you with it, without any effort on your part. On this new level you live, you have been living more comfortably every day, with new morals, new principles. You have accepted things you would not have accepted five years ago, a year ago, things that your father, even in Germany, could not have imagined.

> "Suddenly it all comes down, all at once. You see what you are, what you have done, or, more accurately, what you haven’t done (for that was all that was required of most of us: that we do nothing). You remember those early meetings of your department in the university when, if one had stood, others would have stood, perhaps, but no one stood. A small matter, a matter of hiring this man or that, and you hired this one rather than that. You remember everything now, and your heart breaks. Too late. You are compromised beyond repair.

Herman Mayer - They Thought They Were Free: The Germans 1933-45

u/Avikollit · 63 pointsr/pics

This is my favorite WW2 book:

In August 1942, Hitler's huge Sixth Army reached the city that bore Stalin's name. In the five-month siege that followed, the Russians fought to hold Stalingrad at any cost; then, in an astonishing reversal, encircled and trapped their Nazi enemy. This battle for the ruins of a city cost more than a million lives. Stalingrad conveys the experience of soldiers on both sides, fighting in inhuman conditions, and of civilians trapped on an urban battlefield.

u/introspeck · 59 pointsr/politics

Forget Stephen King, the most horrifying book I ever read was They Thought They Were Free by Milton Meyer. Not because of the outrageousness of what the Germans ultimately did, but because of how mundane and normal it appeared to them before it all spiraled out of control.

"What would I have done?" is a question which really begins to haunt you while you're reading the book - and it doesn't leave you. We would all love to think of ourselves as nobly rejecting the police state, even allowing ourselves to be martyred. But would we, really? In tough economic times, would we turn down that job just because it demands a loyalty oath (but no other objectionable acts)? Especially if your kids were hungry? Would we go against what most of our family and friends (apparently) support, and be happy about being cast out? Would we risk jail and possibly, torture? Certainly some of us would, but how many of us? Enough?

Mayer catalogues a lot of rationalizations and self-justifications, but he doesn't go out of his way to portray the Germans he talked to as particularly evil, because they weren't. They were all too much like you and I. It really brings home the point that It Can Happen Here.

u/mikeaveli2682 · 52 pointsr/hiphopheads

Nazi Germany and the Holocaust.

Edit = I've listed some of the best books I've read on the subject below. Just ask if you want to know anything about them:

[The Coming of the Third Reich by Richard J. Evans] (

[The Third Reich in Power by Richard J. Evans] (

[The Third Reich at War by Richard J. Evans] (

[Maus by Art Speigelman] (

[Hitler and the Power of Aesthetics by Frederich Spotts] (

[Art of the Third Reich by Peter Adam] (

[Hitler's Empire: How the Nazis Ruled Europe by Mark Mazower] (

[State of Deception: The Power of Nazi Propaganda by Susan Bachrach and Steven Luckert] (

[Hitler: 1889-1936 Hubris by Ian Kershaw] (

[Hitler: 1936-1945 Nemesis by Ian Kershaw] (

[The Nazi Doctors: Medical Killing and the Psychology of Genocide by Robert Jay Lifton] (

[The Destruction of the European Jews by Raul Hilberg] (

[Heinrich Himmler by Peter Longerich] (

[Hitler's Hangman - The Life of Heydrich by Robert Gerwartch] (

[Nazi Germany and the Jews: Volume 1: The Years of Persecution 1933-1939 by Saul Friedlander] (

[Nazi Germany and the Jews, 1939-1945: The Years of Extermination by Saul Friedlander] (

[Ordinary Men: Reserve Police Battalion 101 and the Final Solution in Poland by Christopher R. Browning] (

[KL: A History of the Nazi Concentration Camps by Nikolaus Wachsmann] (

u/eternalkerri · 50 pointsr/AskHistorians

It's hard to pin down exactly and by what standard you want to judge "Nazi Ideology".

Were most German soldiers patriotic and nationalistic. Most certainly yes. In Hitler's Army, the author makes strong arguments, using everything from rank and file soldiers diaries to communications between high levels of the Wehrmacht, that the average German believed in the rightness of their cause. That being the restoration of German pride, revenge for Versailles, defense against perceived threats to their way of life (Bolshevism), and defense of their homeland. As the war dragged on, defeatism, anti-Nazi sentiment, and war exhaustion did increase exponentially to where it was openly spoken of, at least by German civilians, their disdain for the Nazi's and Adolph Hitler.

In Ordinary Men, the author zeroes in on a particular police unit in Poland that actively participated in the Ethnic Cleansing of Poland of not only Jews, but Slavs, Poles, and other undesirables. While the book paints a largely dismal picture, showing that many went with the "following orders" principle, it was mixed, but definitely was a majority who participated in the Holocaust and Racist actions.

However, there are constant stories being cited, of German regular army, the Wehrmacht not dealing well with being tasked with taking on Holocaust related actions. There were reports of absenteeism, alcoholism, suicides, and even an occasional refusal of a direct order when these actions had to take place. While clearly these units did participate, it was not a mass action, but the large majority did participate. With what thoughts on their mind we can't say for sure across the board, but we do know that Nazi German soldiers overwhelmingly participated in these acts.

So on the whole, if you want to tie Nazism to the larger ideology of German Nationalism, then yes, the average soldier gladly followed the Nazi lead in this. While ascribing to their racist ideology and activities that related to the Holocaust, the numbers were smaller, but still a significant majority.

u/WeakStreamZ · 49 pointsr/history

I remember this from reading Ordinary Men in college. It’s worth checking out.

u/the_names_Dalton · 45 pointsr/worldnews

Christopher Browning's Ordinary Men sheds light on the Milgram experiments and the psychological factors that contributed to the murderous acts carried out by ordinary men in the Ordnungspolizei.

I was required to read this for a Germany 1919-1945 course I took in college. It left me with conflicting feelings towards the men who carried out these appalling murders. Barbers, shopkeepers, everyday guys. Uncomfortably questioning myself if I would have succumbed to authority and peer pressure and carried out the orders if in that situation (absent of hindsight).

u/GloriousWires · 42 pointsr/fakehistoryporn

The trouble with Germany circa that time is that the Nazis weren't tremendously Out There.

There's a book about this with a very relevant title that I think you should read, or borrow from a library, or something - "Ordinary Men: Reserve Police Battalion 101 and the Final Solution in Poland". The youth of Germany are slightly less responsible for their actions due to years of intense Nazi brainwashing; the elders, not so much. The elders were the 'ordinary men', and even they were happy to line up a few thousand jews and throw the corpses in a ditch.

Wehrmacht soldiers were indisputably Nazis. "Nazi", you see, does not merely cover direct, sworn, card-holding members of The Party: it also describes those fellow-travelers who share the Party's views or further its interests.

Being a member of the German military circa that time involved swearing an oath of personal fealty to Adolph "I don't know which of these untermenschen I hate the most, so just go kill people and I'll tell you when to stop" Hitler, participating in blatant wars of aggression, and witnessing, if not cheerfully indulging in, all sorts of atrocities, with official opinions ranging from tacit approval to outright carte-blanche "slavs aren't people so it's legal to do whatever you want to them".


The Good Book says, in a different context, "ye shall know them by their fruits" - the Nazis had no fruits. Apart from a certain kind, as some of their officials were... peculiar.

Just about everything the Nazis made was garbage. Their vaunted ethics-less science was shit; they falsified reports to fit their politics, did idiot archaeological digs looking for evidence for their falsified aryan history, their concentration camp experiments were nothing but creative torture, and they ignored the whole concept of nuclear physics as "Jewish Physics" and for obvious reasons didn't contribute jack or shit to that field of endeavour.

And as for "but Hitler fixed the economy", wew fucking lad; their economy was a paper tiger based on lies, debt, scams, war booty, and slave labour, 'fixed' by printing money and propping it up with stolen goods, and if he hadn't gone on a war spree and looted Germany's neighbors of gold and goods, he would have been remembered as the architect of the worst catastrophe to hit the German economy since the 30 Years' War.

After The War, no-one who had any real choice in the matter used Nazi equipment; no-one could use all those horses Nazi logistics (which sneers at notions of efficiency) relied upon, because the starving soldiers had eaten them all; the Czechs threw away the Me262 once the Soviets got around to giving them MiGs; the Israelis only used the Bf109 until they could get something better and dumped it at the first opportunity; the Syrians only used the Panzer IV because no-one would give them real tanks; and the French only used the Panther because their own arms industry was munted, on paper it has good stats, and the Nazis left lots of them broken down by the roadside. For a reason, as it turned out. A heavy tank with a medium tank's drivetrain isn't exactly a recipe for success. But hey, it had a badass name and it was pretty good as long as you parked it on a flat surface and didn't try to drive anywhere, so it's been talked up as the best thing since the FT17.

The only thing the Nazis accomplished was to make a huge mess and get a lot of people killed for nothing. Killing people was their plan all along, and the "ordinary men" of Germany were more than happy to go out and shoot some untermenschen. While units like the einsatzgruppen and Dirlewanger Brigade catch a lot of flak for obvious reasons, the Nazi military in general had an atrocious reputation for all sorts of shittery ranging from looting and rape to indiscriminate massacres in 'reprisal' against imagined or real partisan activity- justified partisan activity, given that they were resisting unlawful occupation, when they existed at all, because "oops we just "accidentally" burned down another village, let's say these dead people were partisans" -bombing civilians just about everywhere they went, murdering prisoners, and all manner of things that would be classed in court as "aiding and abetting", including loaning troops and providing logistical support to the SS and einsatzgruppen.

The Wehrmacht only got out of being declared a criminal organisation, after the war, because they were too disorganised to qualify. And when you're talking about Nazi Germany, 'disorganised' is the normal state of affairs: too disorganised to be an organisation was one Hell of an accomplishment.


People like to talk about Mein Opa who bravely defended the Fatherland ^in ^^the ^^^motherland, and who Never Did Anything Wrong; really, it's amazing how many people had nothing to do with the Nazis and were just quietly doing their jobs and never 'employed' a slave labourer or noticed a camp that received a constant stream of jews, gypsies and Soviet POWs, yet somehow never had to build more barracks to hold them.

There is a marked tendency among Nazis, Neo- and otherwise, and sympathisers for such, to try and argue that occasional war-criming on the part of the Allies was as equally immoral as chronic war-criming on the part of the Axis, and that wars are inherently bloody things in which, occasionally, Mistakes Are Made; that it isn't right to pay too much attention to a few thousand dead Frenchmen here or a few thousand dead Poles over there, much less millions of 'missing' Jews and Russians, or to imply that a man in a Stahlhelm might not have been doing the Right Thing by Fighting For His Country.

Both sides did war-crimes. The Nazis treated them as a good day's work.

The usual excuse, once "the Wehrmacht didn't do war crimes" has been blown out of the water like the Bismarck, is that they did war-crime, but only because they'd be shot or sent to the Eastern Front or a concentration camp if they refused.

That wasn't usually a problem; if you didn't have the stomach for it, they'd just move you somewhere else. There was no shortage of young Hitlerites eager to murder some untermenschen, so if you were the one guy in a hundred who thought "Hang on, maybe this is a bit much," they'd get you to help dig the graves, or post you up the road to keep witnesses from getting underfoot, blacklist you from being promoted, or move you to an actual combat unit. After laughing at you and calling you a pussy, of course, because what kind of lily-livered moron gets weepy over a bunch of dead Jews/Gypsies/Russians?

Comparing any army to the Wehrmacht basically means implying that the soldiers in it are a pack of bloodthirsty bandits only held back from a rape-murder-and-pillage spree by fear of being caught.


This shit goes right back to the very end of WW2; The Cold War kicked off right after WW2 finished, and the Allies were willing to overlook quite a bit to try and get the remnants of the Wehrmacht to help out against the Soviets, so a lot of things, especially regarding the Eastern Front, got quietly brushed under the carpet if it'd get some shitbag with an Iron Cross to play ball.


And for a final bonus, "the propaganda" to "demonise the opposing soldiers"? Otto Carius complained about that in his memoir. He wrote of the angry glares of Allied prison camp guards who he felt were disapproving of him purely because of 'atrocity propaganda' and had no justification at all for looking down upon a heroic tank ace who just happened to habitually enjoy the cordial company of SS officers.

He was, after all, just fighting against Judeo-Bolshevism, and never did anything wrong.

The 'atrocity propaganda'. Riight. There's three kinds of propaganda - absolute bullshit, stuff that's mostly true, and truths that the enemy don't want people to hear about. When it came to the behaviour of the Nazi military, there was no need to make things up because everywhere they went, they behaved like the literal nazis they were. Rotterdam, Warsaw, Guernica, Warsaw (again), half-a-hundred other places...

u/DanDierdorf · 36 pointsr/ShitWehraboosSay

Buy Christopher Browning's "Ordinary Men" and loan it to him . It's not a difficult read, well the topic is, but the language is not.
You see that paperbacks are pretty cheap.

u/vidimevid · 35 pointsr/history

I you're interested in this subject, I highly recommend Ordinary Men: Reserve Police Battalion 101 and the Final Solution in Poland by Christopher R. Browning. Very interesting read that tries to find out why and how did ordinary middle aged German men commit those attrocities.

u/Jackmono · 31 pointsr/KotakuInAction

Ordinary Men taking part in the extermination of the Slavic people. And ordinary men who participated in rape to such a scale that it caused a demographic shift.

u/unlimitedzen · 31 pointsr/australia

I agree. Despise the perpetrators all you want, I certainly do, but don't fall into the trap of believing they're somehow different. Christopher Browning wrote an excellent book on the Ordinary Men who helped in the attempted genocide of WWII:

>Browning reconstructs how a German reserve police battalion composed of "ordinary men," middle-aged, working class people, killed tens of thousands of Jews during WW II.

The study of "The banality of evil" warns us that blaming extremist actions on some type of "evil other" blinds us to the role we play in supporting those individuals:

>Normalizing the Unthinkable

>Doing terrible things in an organized and systematic way rests on "normalization." This is the process whereby ugly, degrading, murderous, and unspeakable acts become routine and are accepted as "the way things are done." There is usually a division of labor in doing and rationalizing the unthinkable, with the direct brutalizing and killing done by one set of individuals; others keeping the machinery of death (sanitation, food supply) in order; still others producing the implements of killing, or working on improving technology (a better crematory gas, a longer burning and more adhesive napalm, bomb fragments that penetrate flesh in hard-to-trace patterns). It is the function of defense intellectuals and other experts, and the mainstream media, to normalize the unthinkable for the general public.

u/AntiChr1st · 31 pointsr/history

It depends a lot on when exactly we're talking. For a famous and spectacular example you have Albert Battel, who had the "deal with him after the war" added to his file by Heinrich Himmler personally. You have other examples like Erwin Rommel who was insubordinate on a general basis (wouldn't hunt jews, wouldn't tell anyone else to do it, refused to kill captured commandos) and got mightily unpopular for it. At that point they certainly had a hope of winning and losing people wasn't worth and there was still a general idea of "we want to keep this quiet".
At that point they also tried to keep the actual atrocities to volunteers (to prevent people from getting the option of insubordination in the first place).

If I remember correctly it was sometime late '44 that the feltgendarmerie (Military Police) was given the authority to shoot German soldiers on the spot (for desertion, cowardice, or refusing orders). Along with a rise in drummed up military courts wherever they happened to be handily available.
A lot of people were sent to penal battalions much easier then, as it didn't take actually sending someone to a proper judgement and sentencing.

Reading on the subject is difficult (the subject is surprisingly little covered directly, mostly referred to in passing by people covering other subjects. Far as I know there's no book on that one subject).
However, if you have a JSTOR account there is this. (this is the basis of the "nobody ever got punished claim btw). talks about how atrocities were committed and how people who might refuse to participate directly rather helped indirectly.
Sadly I don't know any easy way to gain a lot of insight into military insubordination in the German armed forces, not because it was rare (it happened more than you'd think), but because it's been covered surprisingly little and going over the old execution cases is something of a sore subject that's been met with a lot of resistance.

For civilian insubordination it's a bit easier as you can read up on people like Sophie Scholl who was beheaded for resistance, nonviolent resistance in her case as she was participating in the white rose.
People were regularly imprisoned for saying things critical to the regime (or Hitler, which is why Sophie Scholls father was in prison), so it's not a stretch to say that at the very least people believed insubordination would carry severe consequences.

Youknow, I'm more interested in history, and especially WW2 history, than the average person. I've seen videos of executions, pictures and videos from the most horrid camps and battles, I've read testimonies...
I have a strong constitution, I can "disengage" emotionally from most of these things. You have to in order to see it in the first place. As a result my response to things like Holocaust deniers saying it was impossible to burn that many bodies is to literally just do the math.

That picture of Sophie Scholl is one of only two things that I can honestly say makes me physically unwell.

u/Grammar_Kanye · 29 pointsr/Showerthoughts

A large part of the holocaust were liquidations in Poland and Eastern Europe. Towns as large as 30,000 people were "liquidated" in a day. Police units would march the populace into the woods and take a portion, line them up, shoot them at a proscribed place in the spine. Repeat. There is a horrific book called "Ordinary Men" about the 101 Police Reserve Battalion. Those ~500 men alone were responsible for >80,000 deaths.

u/Bearjew94 · 27 pointsr/TheMotte

The reason I hate the Nazi analogy, besides the fact that it’s overused, is that it just is not apt. 1920’s Germany was pro-Jewish, only compared to other countries. Being anti-Semitic was not a career ending move and plenty of people in power vocally hated them, even if something like Holocaust was not on their mind. People should actually learn something about early Nazi history before making this comparison. Even if they weren’t popular before right before their rise to power, they were considered more like rabble rousers, not pariahs. I recommend The Coming of the Third Reich by Richard Evans to get an understanding of what led to their assuming and consolidating power.

u/SJ521-12015 · 26 pointsr/todayilearned

I remember reading this in The Rise and Fall of the Third Reich by William Shirer. Fantastic book with so much info about Hitler and the Third Reich. Definitely recommend it for history junkies.

It's 1280 pages.

Edit: if anyone is interested here is a link to buy The Rise and Fall of the Third Reich

u/Brickie78 · 26 pointsr/AskHistorians

Ah, here we are - it's "A Frozen Hell" by Trotter:

It's been a while since I read it, so I may have some of the details wrong, but I think the basics are right.

u/CerealCigars · 25 pointsr/todayilearned

Bloodlands is a great read about Eastern Europe mostly under Stalin. It also talks about the famines in Ukraine. It was difficult to read at night for me because what I read would be so depressing, disgusting, horrifying that I would have constant nightmares.

u/[deleted] · 23 pointsr/AskHistorians

I'm not sure how well someone could measure the effects of propaganda, but personally I really dislike when people use clips from German propaganda to "prove" how enthusiastic the Germans were about the regime. From my readings, (Richard Evans mostly) it seems IMHO like most Germans wanted to believe in the propaganda, and pretended to buy the whole thing hook line and sinker while the Germans kept winning, but stopped believing once the disaster in Russia became known. I think almost more effective on the German people than propaganda was Hitler's impressive string of victories, most of them relatively bloodless annexations and diplomatic victories. These diplomatic victories really underscored his credentials as a "man of peace" and a wise statesman. It's difficult to see him in that light now, but probably to a lot of German people saw him as a "peacemaker" up until the war, which was not actually very popular among the people(if you go by Gestapo files collected on the subject). I really like Richard Evan's series on the Third Reich.

u/meinator · 23 pointsr/Libertarian

The the book Ordinary Men: Reserve Police Battalion 101 and the Final Solution in Poland by Christopher R. Browning. It will give you an incredibly detailed account about how normal men became systematic killers.

u/I_HAVE_A_PET_CAT_AMA · 23 pointsr/SubredditDrama

A quick google found this post in AskHistorians, which cites a passage from this book.

>On 20 August, chaplains from the 295th Infantry Division informed Lieutenant-Colonel Helmuth Groscurth, the chief of staff, that ninety Jewish orphans in the town of Belaya Tserkov were being held in disgusting conditions. They ranged from infants up to seven-year-old children. They were to be shot, like their parents. Groscurth, the son of a pastor and a convinced anti-Nazi, had been the Abwehr officer who, that spring, had secretly passed details of the illegal orders for Barbarossa to Ulrich von Hassell. Groscurth immediately sought out the district commander and insisted that the execution must be stopped. He then contacted Sixth Army headquarters, even though Standartenführer Paul Blobel, the head of the Sonderkommando, warned Groscurth that he would report his interference to Reichsführer SS Himmler. Field Marshal von Reichenau supported Blobel. The ninety Jewish children were shot the next evening by Ukrainian militiamen, to save the feelings of the Sonderkommando. Groscurth wrote a full report which he sent direct to headquarters Army Group South. Appalled and furious, he wrote to his wife: ‘We cannot and should not be allowed to win this war.’

Unfortunately I don't own a copy of the book itself, so I can't look into what sources the author used.

You can, however, read the original report that Groscurth filed with Army Group South (and an English translation, although I'm not sure of how accurate it is) here.

u/wataf · 23 pointsr/politics

Read the book The Rise and Fall of the Third Reich. There's a great audiobook version on Audible. I'm American too, except my four years of history classes were in Texas not NYC, and after reading that book I truly realized how little they actually taught us in high school.

u/Fanntastic · 22 pointsr/PoliticalDiscussion

The Soviets in the 30s and 40s were, as a whole, far more competent in controlling large areas and people than the Germans. Case in point, the German "Hunger Plan" intended to starve millions of Slavs hardly got off the ground in conquered territories, whereas the NKVD was able to systematically control every field, granary, and loaf of bread in the entirety of modern Ukraine. The Germans resorted to shooting mass numbers of Poles and Belorussians instead.

The Soviets were equally as successful with their Gulag deportations. Party officials were embedded enough to identify problem families in even the smallest hamlets of the USSR and ship them thousands of miles to Kazakhstan or Siberia. This is millions of people we're talking about, all specially selected, charged, and recorded in Soviet archives. While the Germans were very good at rounding up and killing people, they weren't nearly as discriminatory or efficient as the Russians.

Bottom line is that if Trump wants to round up and deport millions of people in a systematic, targeted effort, he should look to the USSR rather than the comparatively sloppy Nazis. I would recommend he read Bloodlands for further research into turning America into an ethno-centrist, totalitarian dictatorship.

u/henryz219 · 21 pointsr/AskHistorians

The Rise and Fall of the Third Reich
Required lest history is repeated...

u/Atlas_Rodeo · 21 pointsr/GetMotivated

University mobilization was extremely important to the Nazis. Student groups grew to the point where the entirety of student unions were controlled by extremist Nazi youth groups. They then moved on the faculty, getting leftists and jews and other undesirables sacked in favor of ideologically similar folks.

This of course doesn't even begin to mention the effort that was put into indoctrinating even younger grade-school students.

Everyone should read Richard Evans' fantastic 3-part series on the rise and fall of the Third Reich. Now more than ever do people owe it to themselves to see how this kind of thing starts as a fringe movement and gradually proceeds to....well, everything.

u/aldotheapache2 · 20 pointsr/HistoryPorn

1, 2, 3, 4, 5

They knew. It is one of the biggest misconceptions about the Holocaust, that the German people had little to no idea what was going on, and that it was just the government. It depresses me to see it plastered all over this thread. I think it just makes people feel better to think that it was only a few evil people who perpetrated this horrendous crime, instead of many "normal" people. I highly recommend that everyone read the books and articles I linked to. They explain it much better than I can. I do doubt, however, that I will be able to change many peoples minds. Most of the time I don't even bother.

I'm not saying the Germans of today are bad, they have done many things trying to set right the crimes of their past generations. But the Germans of the time knew what was going on and many participated in it.

They knew.

u/BBQCopter · 20 pointsr/politics

Classic Stockholm Syndrome. You should read this book.

Anyway, here is my rebuttal in bullet point form:

Wall St bailouts = fascism

World's largest prison population = fascism

Due process totally destroyed = fascism

Indefinite detention without trial (just claiming the power is bad enough) = fascism

Extrajudicial assassination of American Citizens (Anwar, etc) = fascism

Censoring of free speech (SOPA) = fascism

Constantly using terrorism as an excuse to expand the security state = fascism

u/recycleaccount38 · 20 pointsr/NewPatriotism

Something that certainly shows the rhymes between today and 20th century history worth checking out might be "They Thought They Were Free: The Germans, 1933-45" by Milton Mayer

This is a long excerpt (and I'm sure some of you already know it) but I think it's really, really important to read this and think about it:

>"And you are an alarmist. You are saying that this must lead to this, and you can’t prove it. These are the beginnings, yes; but how do you know for sure when you don’t know the end, and how do you know, or even surmise, the end? On the one hand, your enemies, the law, the regime, the Party, intimidate you. On the other, your colleagues pooh-pooh you as pessimistic or even neurotic. You are left with your close friends, who are, naturally, people who have always thought as you have.

>"But your friends are fewer now. Some have drifted off somewhere or submerged themselves in their work. You no longer see as many as you did at meetings or gatherings. Informal groups become smaller; attendance drops off in little organizations, and the organizations themselves wither. Now, in small gatherings of your oldest friends, you feel that you are talking to yourselves, that you are isolated from the reality of things. This weakens your confidence still further and serves as a further deterrent to—to what? It is clearer all the time that, if you are going to do anything, you must make an occasion to do it, and then you are obviously a troublemaker. So you wait, and you wait.

>"But the one great shocking occasion, when tens or hundreds or thousands will join with you, never comes. That’s the difficulty. If the last and worst act of the whole regime had come immediately after the first and smallest, thousands, yes, millions would have been sufficiently shocked—if, let us say, the gassing of the Jews in ’43 had come immediately after the ‘German Firm’ stickers on the windows of non-Jewish shops in ’33. But of course this isn’t the way it happens. In between come all the hundreds of little steps, some of them imperceptible, each of them preparing you not to be shocked by the next. Step C is not so much worse than Step B, and, if you did not make a stand at Step B, why should you at Step C? And so on to Step D.

>"And one day, too late, your principles, if you were ever sensible of them, all rush in upon you. The burden of self-deception has grown too heavy, and some minor incident, in my case my little boy, hardly more than a baby, saying ‘Jewish swine,’ collapses it all at once, and you see that everything, everything, has changed and changed completely under your nose. The world you live in—your nation, your people—is not the world you were born in at all. The forms are all there, all untouched, all reassuring, the houses, the shops, the jobs, the mealtimes, the visits, the concerts, the cinema, the holidays. But the spirit, which you never noticed because you made the lifelong mistake of identifying it with the forms, is changed. Now you live in a world of hate and fear, and the people who hate and fear do not even know it themselves; when everyone is transformed, no one is transformed. Now you live in a system which rules without responsibility even to God. The system itself could not have intended this in the beginning, but in order to sustain itself it was compelled to go all the way.

>"You have gone almost all the way yourself. Life is a continuing process, a flow, not a succession of acts and events at all. It has flowed to a new level, carrying you with it, without any effort on your part. On this new level you live, you have been living more comfortably every day, with new morals, new principles. You have accepted things you would not have accepted five years ago, a year ago, things that your father, even in Germany, could not have imagined.

>"Suddenly it all comes down, all at once. You see what you are, what you have done, or, more accurately, what you haven’t done (for that was all that was required of most of us: that we do nothing). You remember those early meetings of your department in the university when, if one had stood, others would have stood, perhaps, but no one stood. A small matter, a matter of hiring this man or that, and you hired this one rather than that. You remember everything now, and your heart breaks. Too late. You are compromised beyond repair.

u/GlorifiedPlumber · 19 pointsr/politics

Far far far more nuanced than that.

Fantastic book. The rise of the Nazi party within Germany, and then Hitler's subsequent takeover of that party, was far more complicated than: Nobody protested... or the SA Brownshirts had more guns.

Germany is/was a complicated place.

u/GaryCarver · 19 pointsr/todayilearned

>You could say it wouldn't take a lot to turn America into an evil country like Germany became. But in a way, it already is. It's just not as poor and desperate as Germany was.

Whenever I see Trump and his supporters, I'm instantly reminded of this book. It's a really good read and shows that the people of Germany were just as culpable in their actions as Hitler was. It's astonishing to see how similar the social climate towards the Jews back then was to today's attitude towards Muslims.

u/SupremeReader · 19 pointsr/KotakuInAction

In Germany they were being sterilized.


A plenty of German Nazis were of Slavic descent and with Slavic names.

There were also a large number of part-Jewish soldiers, especially before 1941. Up to 150,000 or so in total.

u/iCylon · 17 pointsr/worldnews

> They Thought They Were Free: The Germans, 1933-45


and on

love to note the 40% price difference..btw

u/FenrirReleased · 17 pointsr/politics

Relevant; They know what they're doing. And how we will react.

>"Each act, each occasion, is worse than the last, but only a little worse. You wait for the next and the next. You wait for one great shocking occasion, thinking that others, when such a shock comes, will join with you in resisting somehow. You don't want to act, or even talk, alone; you don't want to 'go out of your way to make trouble.' Why not?-Well, you are not in the habit of doing it. And it is not just fear, fear of standing alone, that restrains you; it is also genuine uncertainty. Uncertainty is a very important factor, and, instead of decreasing as time goes on, it grows. Outside, in the streets, in the general community, 'everyone' is happy. One hears no protest, and certainly sees none. You know, in France or Italy there would be slogans against the government painted on walls and fences; in Germany, outside the great cities, perhaps, there is not even this. In the university community, in your own community, you speak privately to your colleagues, some of whom certainly feel as you do; but what do they say? They say, 'It's not so bad' or 'You're seeing things' or 'You're an alarmist.'
>And you are an alarmist. You are saying that this must lead to this, and you can't prove it. These are the beginnings, yes; but how do you know for sure when you don't know the end, and how do you know, or even surmise, the end? On the one hand, your enemies, the law, the regime, the Party, intimidate you. On the other, your colleagues pooh-pooh you as pessimistic or even neurotic. You are left with your close friends, who are, naturally, people who have always thought as you have....
>But the one great shocking occasion, when tens or hundreds or thousands will join with you, never comes. That's the difficulty. If the last and worst act of the whole regime had come immediately after the first and smallest, thousands, yes, millions would have been sufficiently shocked-if, let us say, the gassing of the Jews in '43 had come immediately after the 'German Firm' stickers on the windows of non-Jewish shops in '33. But of course this isn't the way it happens. In between come all the hundreds of little steps, some of them imperceptible, each of them preparing you not to be shocked by the next. Step C is not so much worse than Step B, and, if you did not make a stand at Step B, why should you at Step C? And so on to Step D.
>And one day, too late, your principles, if you were ever sensible of them, all rush in upon you. The burden of self-deception has grown too heavy, and some minor incident, in my case my little boy, hardly more than a baby, saying 'Jewish swine,' collapses it all at once, and you see that everything, everything, has changed and changed completely under your nose. The world you live in - your nation, your people - is not the world you were born in at all. The forms are all there, all untouched, all reassuring, the houses, the shops, the jobs, the mealtimes, the visits, the concerts, the cinema, the holidays. But the spirit, which you never noticed because you made the lifelong mistake of identifying it with the forms, is changed. Now you live in a world of hate and fear, and the people who hate and fear do not even know it themselves; when everyone is transformed, no one is transformed. Now you live in a system which rules without responsibility even to God. The system itself could not have intended this in the beginning, but in order to sustain itself it was compelled to go all the way."

u/Daitenchi · 17 pointsr/history

This is a great book on a related subject. It's about the polish police force during that era. When they were ordered to round up jews and execute them some did it willingly, some did it reluctantly because it was an order, and some just outright refused.

u/unknownmosquito · 15 pointsr/HistoryPorn

You don't have to be young. This book is a historical account of a police unit made of middle-aged men from pre-War Germany through their radicalization from normal men to the kind of people that bayonet pregnant women.

The power of groupthink and ideology is terrifying. The fact of the matter is that it can be confidently said that for any given person, if they were present in Germany during its Nazi transformation, they would almost certainly have become Nazis.

u/UsedLoveGlove · 15 pointsr/politics

"...America’s 45th president is open about the fact that he doesn’t read much history..." that's a real shame because we could all avoid a lot of pain and suffering if the dumb ass just read a little ...

u/FMERCURY · 14 pointsr/MapPorn

Read The Fall of Berlin 1945 by Anthony Beevor. Covers most of what you're asking about and a very entertaining read.

u/umapriyadarsi · 14 pointsr/history

TLDR: as General von Blumenthal, Chief of Staff of the Prussian I Army, put it about the austro-prussian war of 1866, ‘we just shoot the poor sods dead.’ This is repeated all over from Frederick the Great till unification of Germany.

read : Iron Kingdom: The Rise and Downfall of Prussia, 1600–1947

u/eureddit · 13 pointsr/politics

German here. It seems to me like too many people are pinning their hopes on this one investigation.

Too many people are still sure that the system works at some level, even though Trump and his cronies have been busy dismantling it from the inside right since he got into office. They're sure that the institutions will still protect them. They're sure that the population is generally aware of what's going. They're sure that if Trump ever took that final step into authoritarianism, millions would be in the streets.

So I'm just here to say that this process has happened before, and it has happened in many countries, and all of the arguments you're making have been made before - and yet many of these countries fell to totalitarianism.

I'm just gonna leave this quote from a German university professor who was interviewed about what life in Germany was like in 1933-45:

>"But the one great shocking occasion, when tens or hundreds or thousands will join with you, never comes. That’s the difficulty. If the last and worst act of the whole regime had come immediately after the first and smallest, thousands, yes, millions would have been sufficiently shocked—if, let us say, the gassing of the Jews in ’43 had come immediately after the ‘German Firm’ stickers on the windows of non-Jewish shops in ’33. But of course this isn’t the way it happens. In between come all the hundreds of little steps, some of them imperceptible, each of them preparing you not to be shocked by the next. Step C is not so much worse than Step B, and, if you did not make a stand at Step B, why should you at Step C? And so on to Step D.

>"And one day, too late, your principles, if you were ever sensible of them, all rush in upon you. The burden of self-deception has grown too heavy, and some minor incident, in my case my little boy, hardly more than a baby, saying ‘Jewish swine,’ collapses it all at once, and you see that everything, everything, has changed and changed completely under your nose. The world you live in—your nation, your people—is not the world you were born in at all."

(source: They Thought They Were Free: The Germans, 1933-45)

u/hga_another · 13 pointsr/KotakuInAction

> And when per-capita and demographics still result in the US standing out with ten times more school shootings than the rest of the world

Again, it depends on what you compare to what, that's certainly not true for the US vs. Europe.

> Also, "previously disarmed" would imply that these people were ever armed in the first place, which they weren't.


The reason to "bring up hitler" is that there's demonstrated costs to disarming a people, the same Leftists who want to disarm the US people murdered a bare minimum of 100 million previously disarmed innocents in the 20th Century (for China, look up rifle taxes). If you consider the *National*sozialistische Deutsche Arbeiterpartei to be of the Left, as they certainly claimed to be, then quite a few more.

ADDED: I also bring up Hitler because of Austrians like [REDACTED] had any shame, they'd shut up about gun control for at least a few more generations. FURTHER ADDED: it appears he has some shame, he deleted his entire comment. Oops, Australians speak English, not Austrian.

u/Hoyarugby · 12 pointsr/bestof

The user turned this narrative into a five part series of the first killings, how the ordinary men of Reserve Police Battalion 101 dealt with the aftermath of that killing, how the killings became a routine, and eventually details their largest mass killing - the killing of the 42,000 Jews in the Lublin Ghetto

HighCrimesandHistory's post is based on the fantastic work Ordinary Men: Reserve Police Battalion 101 and the Final Solution in Poland. The book details the 500 middle aged family men of Reserve Police Battalion 101, mostly shopkeepers and tradesmen from Hamburg, as they directly killed at least 38,000 Jews in under a year, and sent tens of thousands more to the death camps.

The book itself is incredible and a must read for anybody interested, but /u/highcrimesandhistory turned parts of the book into an incredibly visceral and readable narrative

u/LawLx2 · 12 pointsr/todayilearned

You are going to get a new asshole torn open for openly disregarding the abundant accounts from outside and within the German armed forces themselves that state German Wehrmacht personnel willingly aided the SS. More importantly they also aided the Ordnungspolizei, the more important of the two, imo, as most people are not even aware of their existence. Most will probably read that name and go "Or dung poli- who?" especially people who think the Wehrmacht were shining beacons of virtue. By the end of the war the OrPo were assimilated into the SS. Who were the Ordnungspolizei and why were they incorporated into the SS? They were, prior to 1936, Germany's police forces. With their collectivization under Nazi control they became Germany's federal police. Many of the people simply retained their jobs during all of this, as it's easier for everyone if the police who worked under an organization of this or that name continue their jobs under a different organization with the same scope, broadly speaking. Give it a few years and the OrPo would be accompanying the German advance into the Eastern Front, where they participated in war crimes as a paramilitary force that herded Jews into ghettos and took part in mass murder. Let that sink in for a second, the once FEDERAL POLICE of Germany was gradually warped to the point where it was carrying out mass murder and finally amalgamated into the SS as there ceased to be a need to distinguish the two.

People all too often cite the SS as being packed to the brim with young and ideologically volatile German men who grew up affected by the rhetoric they were exposed to and bought into it. This is simply not reflective of reality when police officers who were predominantly middle-age and lived their early lives before post-WW1 sentiments began to brew were, in their 30s and 40s, complicit in war crimes and mass murder. As police officers. You really believe the Wehrmacht was guilt-free when what used to be civilian law enforcement took up arms and rampaged across Europe, safely behind the frontlines for the most part, murdering ethnic minorities and other "undesirables"? This is without even mentioning those same policemen become taskmasters in all corners of Europe, overseeing ten times or more their number in local collaborators, often regional police forces the Germans simply left intact and incorporated for their own uses. There's a good book on this called Ordinary Men. If ordinary cops can do that, you can bet your ass a soldier who has no reservations about killing people can do the same if not worse.

I'm sure there were German officers who vehemently opposed the shit they were being fed, but it wasn't significant nor does it stand as evidence disproving the occurrence of other incidents. You don't disprove something which is factually recorded as having happened by putting forward a case where the opposite occurred. Just like how you don't retroactively prove you didn't commit a crime by not committing a crime in a difference situation. That's not how it works.

Manstein was supposedly one of those German officers, rather far up the chain of command, who was not always in agreement with Hitler. Right up until the point he received a large estate in Poland and tax benefits, much like many other officers in the Wehrmacht complaints from him promptly ceased to manifest themselves and he was more than happy to serve. Manstein. The Manstein.

You're arguing with at best isolated anecdotes and excerpts from history which can be cherry picked to present a misleading narrative that is still mostly acceptable- if only to those who don't dig deeper and have little general knowledge of the Second World War and its darker details. At worst you're putting forward overwhelmingly misleading generalizations and just blatantly incorrect information you cannot find anywhere except from those who advocate historical revision. Against the bigger backdrop of documented history- minus cherry-picking, that's just not a fight you're going to win.

u/bomphcheese · 12 pointsr/politics

Wow! That was a fascinating read. Thanks for sharing. It really speaks to the same tribal behaviors we are seeing in current society.

I would also recommend the book “Ordinary Men” for a similar look at how an entire society became mass murderers.


Ordinary Men: Reserve Police Battalion 101 and the Final Solution in Poland

u/McDrMuffinMan · 12 pointsr/oddlysatisfying

I know this isn't the time or place but if you guys are interested there's a great book about this Litteral exact thing.

It's called ordinary men and I suggest anyone interested in history have a read. It's super interesting

Ordinary Men: Reserve Police Battalion 101 and the Final Solution in Poland

u/volctun · 12 pointsr/paradoxplaza

nice to hear, Finland is a country that the devs really need to get around to updating. If you need some help for the winter war stuff, look up a book called Frozen Hell. Very good on the finnish winter war

u/Klarok · 12 pointsr/worldnews

Well you can read the rest of the wikipedia article if you like:

Or you could go read the book:

But in the end, the Finns did amazingly well, avoided outright defeat and gave Russia a very public bloody nose. However, they didn't win. If they'd kept fighting, Russia would have defeated them absent strong Allied intervention.

u/equal_tea · 11 pointsr/politics

> These ten men were not men of distinction. They were not men of influence. They were not opinion-makers. Nobody ever gave them a free sample of anything on the ground that what they thought of it would increase the sales of the product. Their importance lay in the fact that God—as Lincoln said of the common people—had made so many of them. In a nation of seventy million, they were the sixty-nine million plus. They were the Nazis, the little men to whom, if ever they voiced their own views outside their own circles, bigger men politely pretended to listen without ever asking them to elaborate.

~ Milton Mayer, They Thought They Were Free: The Germans, 1933-45

u/waitmanb · 11 pointsr/AskHistorians

Yes, but it only goes so far. Browning's Ordinary Men were middle-aged, married men from the most communist, least nazified region of Germany and yet they killed along with the rest.

There IS work that shows, for example, that Austrians were overrepresented in the SS and in killing units as were individuals from border regions. Also, that the generation born before WWI but not old enough to participate were particularly active.

u/Lighth_Vader · 11 pointsr/movies

Stalingrad. Yes, I know there have been some movies about it, but none that even came anywhere close to being accurate. What happened at Stalingrad during WW2 is completely unknown to most people of the world. It was probably the most horrifying battle in all of human history.

Suggested reading

u/Drijidible · 10 pointsr/history

I'd strongly recommend people read Ordinary Men.

"Ordinary Men: Reserve Police Battalion 101 and the Final Solution in Poland, a study of German Ordnungspolizei (Order Police) Reserve Unit 101, used to massacre and round up Jews for deportation to the Nazi death camps in German occupied Poland in 1942. The conclusion of the book, which was much influenced by the experiments of Stanley Milgram, was that the men of Unit 101 were not demons or Nazi fanatics but ordinary middle-aged men of working-class background from Hamburg, who had been drafted but found unfit for military duty. In some cases, these men were ordered to round up Jews and if there was not enough room for them on the trains, to shoot them. In other, more chilling cases, they were ordered to merely kill a specified number of Jews in a given town or area. The commander of the unit gave his men the choice of opting out of this duty if they found it too unpleasant; the majority chose not to exercise that option, resulting in fewer than 15 men out of a battalion of 500 opting out of their grisly duties."

u/thelankyasian · 10 pointsr/explainlikeimfive

During my graduate history studies we read this:

Using journals taken from these reservist policemen, the aurthor displays just how much the common man knew about the final solution and just how traumatizing it was to shoot them face to face.

u/chribstera · 10 pointsr/lastimages

Found the book via google machine Ordinary Men by Christopher Browning

“Christopher Browning’s shocking account of how a unit of average middle-aged Germans became the cold-blooded murderers of tens of thousands of Jews.”

I’m actually glad you brought the topic back up as I just ordered the book myself! My wife and I have actually talked about this subject a lot lately, and just how powerful conditioning actual is in our lives. Whether it be for things like those German officers, self help affirmations or training for a marathon (which is what I am trying to do right now), it’s all different aspects of being conditioned into becoming something else, step by step. Gaining that sort of understanding has greatly improved my ability to empathize with others and has made me a much more centered and content person. Honestly.

u/Willing_Philosopher · 10 pointsr/morbidquestions

Those interested in this topic might like the book "Ordinary Men: Reserve Police Battalion 101 and the Final Solution in Poland" ( ) about a group German police who started out as low level officers and slowly got corrupted into committing terrible acts on behalf of the Nazis.

From the description:

>Ordinary Men is the true story of Reserve Police Battalion 101 of the German Order Police, which was responsible for mass shootings as well as round-ups of Jewish people for deportation to Nazi death camps in Poland in 1942. Browning argues that most of the men of RPB 101 were not fanatical Nazis but, rather, ordinary middle-aged, working-class men who committed these atrocities out of a mixture of motives, including the group dynamics of conformity, deference to authority, role adaptation, and the altering of moral norms to justify their actions. Very quickly three groups emerged within the battalion: a core of eager killers, a plurality who carried out their duties reliably but without initiative, and a small minority who evaded participation in the acts of killing without diminishing the murderous efficiency of the battalion whatsoever.
>While this book discusses a specific Reserve Unit during WWII, the general argument Browning makes is that most people succumb to the pressures of a group setting and commit actions they would never do of their own volition.
>Ordinary Men is a powerful, chilling, and important work with themes and arguments that continue to resonate today.
>“A remarkable—and singularly chilling—glimpse of human behavior...This meticulously researched book...represents a major contribution to the literature of the Holocaust."—Newsweek

u/I_just_made · 10 pointsr/Impeach_Trump

Read The Rise and Fall of the Third Reich.

It was written in the 60s I think, not long after the events of WWII; but is very complete in discussing how Hitler was able to assume power, his failed attempts, and why the German people "let this happen".

It is very good, and draws a lot of parallels in our recent politics.

u/icraig91 · 10 pointsr/PoliticalHumor

If you don't think it's happening.. go read this:

u/beer-by-the-barrel · 10 pointsr/politics

Perhaps a place where the government spies on its citizens? taps their phones? Rejects Habeus Corpus? Declares and exercises the right to assassinate anyone, including American citizens?

Turn off CNN and read some history. I suggest you start with, "They Thought They Were Free".

u/jorgecomacho · 9 pointsr/WarshipPorn

Also worth looking at Castles of Steel

That and Dreadnought by the same author are my favorites of the era.

u/bitt3n · 9 pointsr/HistoryPorn

this is a good recent book about it

another thing they apparently did was have the prisoner stand against the wall ostensibly to measure his height, then shoot him in the head via a hole in the wall. this way the prisoner didn't struggle.

u/Dolbyrko · 9 pointsr/AskHistorians

Although he is known for his paintings (besides, you know, World War II), Hitler had a passion for architecture.
He even once said that "If Germany had not lost [World War I], [He] would have not got involved in politics and would have been a great architect, some kind of Michelangelo"

According to Albert Speer (architect and friend of Hitler's), architecture was his favorite passion.
He even modified the final plans for the operas of Cologne and Linz.

Several times, some of the works given to Speer were done from drafts made by Hitler.


Albert Speer, Inside the Third Reich

Guyot & Restellini, L'art Nazi (in French)

Edit: typos

u/Ibrey · 9 pointsr/badatheism

I didn't mention the Chart because I thought it was necessary to provide some evidence that anything on Jim Walker's personal web page is much more accurately described as "biased and inaccurate" than "objective and trustworthy"; I just would have been remiss not to mention his most noteworthy accomplishment in the art of bullshit. Sure, Hitler said the things that Walker attributes to him in Mein Kampf, and in that one speech which is so frequently quoted without mention of the fact that it is a rhetorical reversal of a political opponent's speech that had cited "my feelings as a Christian" as a motive for opposing anti-Semitism—and because Walker, like many of his fellow atheists, is afraid to face the facts about Hitler's relation to religion, he takes these quotes at face value, without critically analysing them in the light of other information from the Table Talk, or from Goebbels' diaries, or from Speer's memoirs. It seems that Hitler's honesty is not to be doubted, and that this is more than one can say for Barack Obama. Indeed, though Walker quote-mines Inside the Third Reich for proof that the persecution of Christianity was conducted by Bormann without Hitler's knowledge, he silently overlooks inconvenient testimony like this:

> In Bormann's mind, the Kirchenkampf, the campaign against the churches, was useful for reactivating party ideology which had been lying dormant. He was the driving force behind this campaign, as was time and again made plain to our round table. Hitler was hesitant, but only because he would rather postpone this problem to a more favorable time. Here in Berlin, surrounded by male cohorts, he spoke more coarsely and bluntly than he ever did in the midst of his Obersalzberg entourage. "Once I have settled my other problems," he occasionally declared, "I'll have my reckoning with the church. I'll have it reeling on the ropes." (p. 123)

If you want to know something about history, read a history book, not apologetics web sites.

u/WhoIsSuzyCreamcheese · 9 pointsr/Anarchism

> They are first and foremost people and individuals with lives and families,

So is everyone; I don't think anyone seriously doubts it. ISIS members have families and people that love them. So do Klansmen. This is the most facile, boring anti-violence argument one can possibly imagine.

> they dont conciously go out to enforce unjustified hierarchy,

I mean, yes, they do. It's literally their job. Maybe they know it's unjustified, maybe they don't; I find it hard to care. Cops will do anything from mass executions ( to bathhouse raids if they're ordered and paid to. If they think hierarchy is unjustified, they either need to quit, or become selective when following orders. Put on the uniform, take the wage, pay the price.

> I cant believe the degeneracy and the actual hypocracy of some people, who would defend muslims as individuals against the type right wing facism and racism which paints all muslims as terrorists ,but find it perfectly acceptable to kill nameless Cops who had nothing to with the actions of their colleagues.

I mean, not all Muslims are involved in oppression. Cops are, definitionally; even if they're nice folks, orders are orders, standard policy is standard policy. This is just hilarious equivocation. And I mean, I don't think many people are outright saying yeah, go abduct and kill some cops - the overwhelming response I've seen has been about how inevitable this response was. And "has nothing to do with their colleagues" is pretty rich - even cops who act with outright violence often aren't hood-wearing neon-lights RACISTS, they're expressing subtle biases that other cops tend to respect and respond to. Cops in a department will draw into the blue wall and actively defend each other - when individual "good cops" start actually doing something about these supposedly unrepresentative "bad apples," I'll start to care about their differentiation.

> Do cops have role in maintaoning hierarchy? Yes. Do cops on a regular basis use violence and bullying to maintain this hierarchy? Yes. Should cops be killed irregardless of their actions or livelihoods? FUCKING NO.

I'd love to see some proof of people actually suggesting a kind of cop genocide unironically, because it's pretty obviously not what most people were saying.

> Why the fuck would you say shit like this, knowing it does not represent the ideolodgy of libertarian socialism, workplace democracy and the absance of hierachy?

You know violence and indeed outright assassination are the products of certain anarchist doctrines, right? Propaganda by the deed wasn't universal, but it's an important part of anarchist history. Admiration/ respect for such actions is not utterly incompatible with anarchism.

u/Lonely_and_Deranged · 9 pointsr/sociopath

tl;dr: Psychopaths and Sociopaths are normal people.

Sociopathy is not a good/ bad thing that turn people into monster.It's just a copying mechanism for survivors of abuse in their childhood.

My advice for every sociopath with antisocial tendencies is: Focus your attention on the kind of person you want to be, rather than what kind of events you want to happen. Imagine how you would act now if you suddenly had impeccable character. Then, make your goal be to act that way, just for the moment.

I think the reason why people are concerned or even frightened by people that show no empathy is because it seems they cannot be reasoned with.
You cannot appeal to them with emotions, or other ways of relating that may have had an effect on a neurotypical.

What do people who lack empathy act like?

They behave all the time like you do most of the time.

Someone who lacks empathy does not vicariously feel the experiences of another. It does not mean they are predatory. It does not mean they are irresponsible. It does not mean they are sadistic. Do not be persuaded into demonizing such people.

Sociopaths and Psychopaths lack an empathy and/or guilt barrier that would prevent them from doing something that is generally perceived to be "wrong" "bad" or "immoral".

They are indifferent beyond measure,without mercy and justice.Try to imagine the indifference itself as a power.The truth is, indifference really is a power, selectively applied, and living in such a way is not only eminently possible, with a conscious adoption of certain attitudes, but facilitates a freer, more expansive, more adventurous mode of living. Joy and grief are still there, along with all the other emotions, but they are tempered – and, in their temperance, they are less tyrannical.Sociopaths are people who grit their teeth and tolerate pain and suffering.They’re serene and confident in the face of anything you can throw at them.

Think of the spartan warriors (IMO the most stoic society that there was). They were trained since kids to get rid of fear, they were encouraged to get in fight and make fun of each other in order to not take emotions seriously. The spartans had several types of drills that they did in order to abandon primal instincts and reflexes. For example, they would hit aspiring warriors in their eyes with vines until the warriors could stop reflex from closing both eyes when they got hit.

The spartans abandoned all primal instincts, including fear, so that they could be their 100% rational and tactical self during battle, and that's part of the reason they were such good warriors.

Some psychopaths may murder, but it’s not because of their psychopathy that they murder. Indeed, psychopathy or any other condition may have played an important role in someone’s decision making—obviously, no one makes decisions in isolation from their neurological condition—but it’s not the psychopathic mind that turns people to kill—and kill in numbers.

Contrary to being immoral, their social blindspot empowers them to avoid many moral pitfalls. Empathy frequently leads to morally bankrupt behavior:

When a control group in an experiment were asked whether a ten year old girl with a serious illness should be allowed to skip a queue to get medical treatment ahead of children who needed it more, they appropriately refused. When the subjects were encouraged to empathize with her by being given her name, face and personal story, subjects overwhelmingly opted to move her to the front of the queue, consigning faceless children to death.

This is a phenomenon that salespeople, politicians, lawyers and every one with an agenda knows to exploit. I'm exploiting it in this very post, and you didn't even realize it! Those who lack empathy have no such lever by which their thinking may be hijacked. They are more apt to make fair and rational judgments.

As with most things, empathy is not simple. It is not binary; it is not something you either have or don't. You will feel empathy for some people sometimes and other times you won't. Even if you are an empathic person, you frequently act with indifference or disproportionately small concern. Thousands recently died in the Philippines in a disaster that exceeded the 9/11 terror attacks; how many Americans fell to their knees and wept? Did you? The difference between you and someone who doesn't feel empathy is that they behave all the time like you do most of the time.

Champions for empathy will protest, "what's to stop someone from being a violent vandal if they don't have empathy?" Lets be clear about something; empathy won't prevent someone from doing horrendous things . Read the account of a Nazi reservist in Police Battalion 101 who, in spite of being viscerally empathic, participated in the point-blank execution of Jews:

> The shooting of the men was so repugnant to me that I
missed the fourth man. It was simply no longer possible
for me to aim accurately. I suddenly felt nauseous and
ran away from the shooting site.

Empathy is not a safeguard against cruelty. Empathy can even be manipulated into "counter-empathy" or sadism .Empathy was never a deterrent, and those who lack empathy have no more incentive than you to engage in foul behavior.

u/whatissandbag · 9 pointsr/Bad_Cop_No_Donut

Read up about Germany's Reserve Police Battalion 101 during WW2 - Ordinary Men by Christopher Browning is a great read into how normal everyday people can become monsters near-overnight. Not to say mainland isn't sending in the military too - just wanted to shed some light on human weaknesses in general.

Ordinary Men: Reserve Police Battalion 101 and the Final Solution in Poland

u/Sxeptomaniac · 9 pointsr/Christianity

The difficulty of discussing Christianity and the Holocaust, directly, is that relatively few people, even within Germany, were truly aware of the extent of the Holocaust until near the end of the war. As a result, you will find it a little more difficult to find information directly related to that topic. Christianity's relationship to Naziism, on the other hand, does have some more readily available information.

While a good portion of Germany's Christian population either supported, or at least failed to oppose, Naziism, that is not universally the case. You might be interested in a biography of Dietrich Bonhoeffer, a pastor and theologian who strongly opposed Hitler and Naziism, and was eventually executed by them. He was moderately known at the time, but became extremely influential in the past few decades or so.

While it's an extremely large volume, and not directly related, you might find some useful information in "The Rise and Fall of the Third Reich". It's very comprehensive, and does talk a bit about the Christian Democrat party's opposition to Nazism early on, only to eventually fail to mount any meaningful opposition as Hitler began rising to power.

Finally, while I don't know of any specific books on the topic, you probably will want to look into the influence of Martin Luther (specifically his antisemitism) on Germany, Naziism, and Hitler. This is topic that has been widely written about, to my knowledge, so there should be an abundance of information out there on it.

u/phaedrusTHEghost · 9 pointsr/politics

Sheesh, I know what you mean about the depressing information. Everything I'm taking this semester is depressing: Anthro, Environmental Sociology x2. Hopefully, the supposed checks and balances within the political, and legal system prove to do their job and we can get back on track to attempting to figure a solution to our infinite consumption economics.

Is this the book you referred to?

u/TheFaster · 8 pointsr/politics

> Take your own suggestion and read some old history books.

Anyone even remotely familiar with history would know that Hitler removed all aspects of socialism from the Nazi party (often violently).

I understand that I'm wasting my time arguing with someone who has no interest in reality, but please take your own advice and pick up a history book. I'd recommend the "The Rise and Fall of the Third Reich". It's an absolutely exhaustive coverage of not only Hitler, but the factors and moods that led to him, written by a journalist who was stationed in Berlin during Hitler's rise, and often provides first-hand account of many of the events he covers.

Please, educate yourself. Don't just parrot goofy memes.

u/saltandvinegarrr · 8 pointsr/history

Hey OP, the book you want to read about this is Ordinary Men

The book covers the activities of an honest-to-god Einzatsgruppen unit, recruited from policemen around Hamburg. It's one of the most chilling books I've ever read about Nazi atrocities. The perpetrators of these massacres really were just ordinary people, yet as the author discovers, fell quite naturally into their role as executioners.

Browning provides a summary like so. ~10% of the unit committing atrocities became enthusiastic killers. ~80% performed their roles joylessly, but killed reliably and made no refusals. ~10% refused or hesitated at some point, without any real consequences.
A minority (13 of 500), abstained from killing outright.

In reality, if a German officer or soldier wished to abstain from committing atrocities, there was no real consequences for them. This held true even for the Einzatsgruppen, and certainly held true for regular army units.

u/MAI742 · 8 pointsr/history

TLDNR: the average German person never had strong positive or negative feelings about Jews, they just said that they hated Jews when the Nazis were in power and then said that they were okay with Jews when they were removed.


If you're not familiar with group psychology and conformity then the idea that you don't need to hate a people to commit genocide upon them might seem like a bold assertion to you, so I'd urge you to pick up one of the best (and cheapest) texts on this exact topic:

In that particular case it proved possible to get almost every member of a unit full of people who'd never killed anyone before, recruited from an anti-Nazi city (Hamburg), to kill a whole village's worth of innocent people by explaining how it was necessary to safeguard their country's National Security and indirectly making them feel embarassed about backing out in front of their friends and coworkers. They didn't have to threaten them, order them, or indoctrinate them. They just had to tell them that it would protect their loved ones and let them feel pressured not to slack off when they were with their peers.

You were absolutely right about the hardcore believers. They formed groups like the Wehrmacht Veterans Association and the SS Veterans' Association (which campaigned for the Waffen-SS to be decriminalised and its members to receive state pensions). People like Field Marshall Erich von Manstein went to the grave either refusing to say a single negative thing about Hitler or the regime or its policies, or outright saying (usually just to trusted friends) that they had been right.

Of course, even during the war the strong supporters of the regime and direct participants in War Crimes would have found it extremely emotionally damaging to change their views. To believe that what they had done was evil would have destroyed them. So they doubled down and believed as hard as they could that they had done the right thing and therefore were good people. Post-war 'De-Nazification' just strengthened their convictions.

Between the lacklustre response from average Germans, and the counterproductive effect among most hardcore ex-Nazis, even observers of the time called "De-Nazification" an abject failure. Later scholarship has made the depths of this failure even clearer.


Compare and contrast the relatively mainstream fear of Asian Communists, which endured in the public sphere/polite conversation even after the war - but with progressively softer rhetoric and more emphasis on the "Communist" than the "Asian" part.


EDIT: I can see why you'd want to believe that De-Nazification worked, but that doesn't make it true... I've yet to see the words "De-Nazification was a success" in any book or journal covering the process.

u/Gen_McMuster · 8 pointsr/slatestarcodex

Your last point is pretty reminiscent of ordinary men though this is definately easier to pull off when your exporting the jackbooted into communities they dont have ties with

u/subpoenaduece · 8 pointsr/history

Anthony Beevor's Stalingrad was a pretty gripping read about the battle and the fate of the 6th army. I'm sure some of the more hardcore history buffs out there have more detailed suggestions, but if you're looking for a good layman's history of Stalingrad you can't go wrong with it.

u/Singulaire · 7 pointsr/KotakuInAction

A bit of pedantry here: you wouldn't have necessarily been a Nazi, since many citizens of Nazi Germany, including members of the army serving in the eastern front, weren't actual members of the Nazi party. However, you probably would have "Sieg Heil'd like a motherfucker" and gone along with the orders to "liquidate" this or that batch of Jews.

> There's a story in Peterson's book about a troop of German Military police who go to Warsaw. Normal guys with families. Their officer tells them that its going to be rough, that nobody has to come who doesn't want to, but he'll be there and their comrades will be there. Almost nobody steps back from it, and they all go to Poland. Six Months later they're Bayoneting women in the street and kicking in doors to shoot people.

I recommend Ordinary Men, as linked above, for further reading. It goes into great depth on the story of how Reserve Police Battalion 101 went from average Joes to war criminals.

u/lobotomatic · 7 pointsr/Christianity

Not to tread on the verge of falling prey to slippery slope argumentation, but I do think it is a rather short distance from, "we need to carry guns during worship to protect ourselves from... [insert vague and unlikely threat of your choice]," to, "kill them in the name of God."

One thing a reading of events surrounding the Nazi genocides has shown me is that the greatest amount of evil was perpetrated by normal people who believed they were helping the common good.

That's not so say Christians are Nazis or any such thing like that, only to point that the distance from "us vs them" mindsets to outright violence is not that far, even for otherwise peaceful and non-violent people.

An example of what I am referring to:

u/Wsallgood · 7 pointsr/HistoryPorn

That really was a pretty rough read. Not a bedtime story. Link

u/SirViracocha · 7 pointsr/JoeRogan

While I do think it's podcast fodder. He brings this up. You must push back before it goes to far, incremental steps soon lead us far from where it was reasonable. An example of this gone wrong, was an ordinary german police force that ended up shooting women after nazi indoctination

u/LGBTreecko · 7 pointsr/Negareddit

Have you tried reading this book? It explains the mindset of being a younger male back then. If you know that 3.5 million other Germans have already been sent to death camps for resisting, you'd probably get in line right next to everyone else, because, lets face it, that's what you'd be trained to do.

u/eorld · 7 pointsr/history

You clearly didn't read the second link, (also wtf is executing leaders of an opposing ideology, they were murdering prisoners of war) here's a few crimes by the 'ordinary men' of the Wehrmacht

> The 707th Infantry Division of the Wehrmacht put this principle into practice during an "anti-partisan" sweep that saw the division shoot 10,431 people out of the 19,940 it had detained during the sweep while suffering only two dead and five wounded in the process.[64]


> At Mirgorod, the 62nd Infantry Division executed "the entire Jewish population (168 people) for associating with partisans".[65] At Novomoskovsk, the 444th Security Division reported that they had killed "305 bandits, 6 women with rifles (Flintenweiber), 39 prisoners-of-war and 136 Jews".[65] In revenge for a partisan attack that had killed one German soldier, the Ersatz-Brigade 202 "as an act of retaliation shot 20 Jews from the villages of Bobosjanka and Gornostajewka and burnt down 5 Jew-houses".[66] Even more extreme was the case in Serbia, where the majority of the Jews there were murdered by the Wehrmacht, not the SS.[67] At Šabac, "Central European Jewish refugees, mostly Austrians, were shot by troops of predominantly Austrian origin in retaliation for casualties inflicted by Serbian partisans on the German Army".[65] The orders issued by Field Marshal Wilhelm Keitel in September 1941 called for the German Army to shoot 100 Serbs for every German soldier killed by the Serb guerrillas and did not call for Jews to be singled out.[68] But because of rampant anti-Semitism in the German officer corps, it was more or less automatically assumed that the Serbian Jewish community were behind all of the partisan attacks, hence the targeting of Jews in the mass shootings carried out in retaliation for guerilla attacks.[68] The German historian Jürgen Förster, a leading expert on the subject of Wehrmacht war crimes, argued that the Wehrmacht played a key role in the Holocaust and it is wrong to ascribe the Shoah as solely the work of the SS while the Wehrmacht were a more or less passive and disapproving bystander.[67]

Edit: Just to add, when you say that part about "normal people not liking that" that just isn't true, the Nazis made regular people key parts of the holocaust all the time. You should read about the 101st reserve police battalion, very regular normal people. They were middle aged, didn't grow up under Nazi propaganda, working class people from Hamburg, drafted but found ineligible for regular military duty. They ended up being a major part of the holocaust in Poland. (The citation for most of this is 'Ordinary Men' by Christopher Browning)

u/Kiwi_Force · 7 pointsr/Battlefield

How is this brigading? I can provide more academic sources if needed.

The Clean Wehrmacht myth is a well documented fact in history academica. I just generally start off with a wiki article as they are easy to read and the sources for it are found at the bottom of the page if you want to verify it. No one is saying all or even half of the Wehrmacht were members of the Nazi Party. Quite the opposite, the entire point is that just because you weren't a card carrying member, doesn't mean they didn't do just as bad and sometimes worse things in the name of Nazism.

u/jetpacksforall · 7 pointsr/AskHistorians

I can give you a short list of personal favorites, books that I consider both informative and extremely interesting / entertaining to read. As you'll see I prefer memoirs and eyewitness accounts to sweeping historical overviews of the war.

With the Old Breed, E.B. Sledge. Personal memoir of the author's experience as a marine machine gunner in the Pacific war, specifically the campaigns on Peleliu and Okinawa. Sledge is a marvelous writer with prose I'd describe as "Hemingwayesque", a real compliment. Grueling, appalling, human, his account does a great job of sketching in the personalities of his fellow marines.

"The Good War": An Oral History of World War II, Studs Terkel. This is the book that World War Z is aping, but the actual book is a far more gripping read. Terkel sat down for personal interviews with 121 survivors of the war, Germans, Japanese, British, Canadian as well as American.

Band Of Brothers, Stephen Ambrose. Now made famous by the TV series, the story of E Company's recruitment, training and ultimate combat experience during and after the Normandy invasion is as intense and eye-opening as it sounds.

Between Silk and Cyanide: A Codemaker's War, Leo Marks. Marks was a cryptographer working in London for the SOE (special operations executive, the group responsible for running much of "The Resistance" throughout occupied Europe, North Africa and Asia). He's a very funny guy, a self-professed coward, but the book portrays his deeply heartfelt concern for the well-being of the agents he was sending behind enemy lines. His codes, and methods of transmitting them, could be the only thing saving them from capture by the Gestapo. All too often, they weren't enough. "If you brief an agent on the Tuesday and three days later his eyes are taken out with a fork, it hastens the aging process," he writes.

Stalingrad, Anthony Beevor. When you start to read about the Eastern Front, you realize that much of the conventional western perspective of WWII in Europe is based on the comparatively minor engagements in Italy and France. France lost 350,000 civilians to the war, The Soviet Union lost 15-20 million. Considered purely from the POV of total casualties and total armed forces committed, WWII was primarily an engagement between Germany and the Soviet Union throughout Eastern Europe, with a number of smaller actions in the western countries. Anyhow, the story of the brutal, grinding siege of Stalingrad, the point where the German tide definitively turned, is a must-read.

Homage To Catalonia, George Orwell. This is Orwell's personal account of his service fighting on the Republican side against fascists during the Spanish Civil War from 1936-37. Basically, this was the war before the war, as described by one of the greatest writers of the 20th century. Incidentally Hemingway's novel For Whom The Bell Tolls is a fairly accurate, very powerful portrayal of a different view of the same war.

u/ryeoldfashioned · 7 pointsr/HistoryPorn

Here's the book:

I'd highly recommend it. Definitely accessible for a non-historian (such as me). It was just amazing how the Soviets recovered from almost losing Moscow. The Germans continually thought the Soviets were on their last legs, just one more push before they'd collapse - but it never happened, and the Soviets kept forming up division after division, manufacturing tank after tank, way beyond what Germany thought they were capable of doing.

Now I'd like to find a good book about the aftermath - the gradual multi-year fighting retreat Westwards of the German army until the end.

u/Bro_Winky · 7 pointsr/AskHistorians

Although the first instinct is to blame Cold War era propaganda, based on evidence available, it seems that Soviet troops were responsible for instances of mass rap and other atrocities towards the end of the war. Antony Beevor’s The Fall of Berlin is a great resource for information regarding this. Naturally, the Russians often protest these accusations, not wishing to tarnish their perceived valor during their Great Patriotic War. Often many Soviet veterans will claim that those responsible for the atrocities were the undisciplined lower echelon units who brought up the rear for the elite front line troops.

Before total condemnation is handed down, one very important thing should be remembered; Neither the Americans nor the British had to endure German invasion or occupation. Therefore, their respective troops had less motivation to commit brutal acts of reprisal against the German people. The Russians, on the other hand, suffered immensely when the Germans directly attacked their homeland. No other Allied country (with the Chinese at a close second) sustained as many casualties during the war. The Germans saw the Russians as sub-human, and they were treated brutally. Even when the tide turned and the Germans were being pushed out of Russia, they operated a “scorched earth” policy, destroying anything that could be useful to their enemy as they retreated, including entire towns and villages.

Naturally, when Soviet troops suddenly found themselves in enemy territories, they enacted what, to them, was justified retribution against the many crimes the Germans had inflicted upon them. Added to this was the outrage that Soviet soldiers felt upon witnessing the relatively comfortable European living conditions (large houses, indoor plumbing and other middle to upper class niceties). Many Soviet troops were simple peasants of very modest means before the war, and were angered as to why the enemy instigated an expansionist war when they lived with such plenty and prosperity, leading to mass lootings. These acts of revenge, as well as the propaganda highlighting the “savagery” of the Soviet “horde,” are why so many German troops preferred surrender to the Western Allies.

It should be noted that not all Soviet troops behaved this way, and some did treat the defeated population with humanity. The Soviet high command did take steps to stop the atrocities, and threatened to shoot any serious offenders. Cases of rape did continued, however, until the end of 1947 when Soviet authorities finally segregated the occupying troops from the local population into guarded military camps and bases.

u/couchcreeper · 7 pointsr/funny

It's hard to take those casualty estimates in the above link seriously. First off, they are all from Russian sources (only one Finnish one, and that one a low figure compared to other Finnish estimates I've seen). Note too how close they are to the official Soviet figure - which was released when the Russians were desperate to downplay their humiliation in Finland and how unprepared the Red Army was for war.

It's rare to find a conflict where casualty figures vary so widely but that has a lot to do with the Soviets suppressing the magnitude of their disaster in Finland. The Finns conservatively estimated Russian dead at 200,000. The Soviets claimed it was 48,000 but no one believed it at the time. Khrushchev, in his memoirs, claimed they lost a million men in Finland but that figure must have included wounded, captured and missing and was probably an exaggeration. I've read that the Germans estimated Russian losses as over 300,000 dead. Whatever they were, they were horrendous, even by Soviet standards. I can well imagine it was 3 to 4 times what they admitted at the time so an estimate of 200,000 killed sounds about right.

BTW, the best English language account I've read of the war is William Trotter's "A Frozen Hell" if you're interested to learn more.

Amazon link:

u/ovoutland · 7 pointsr/atheism

Hitler wasn't a Christian; he was a pagan who worshipped Wagner and the "old gods" and wanted to restore what he saw as a heroic (i.e. militaristic) conception of Man. The torchlight processionals, the secret rituals, were all profoundly anti-Christian. Hitler actively prosecuted Christian churches until "Hitler's Pope," Pius XII, cut a deal with him - both equally cynical in what they hoped to attain from it. Christian youth groups were banned and disbanded and their members forced into the Hitler Youth instead.

See Unholy Alliance for Hitler's fascination with the occult, and The Third Reich in Power for this:

>Rosenberg declared in 1938, since young people were now almost completely under the control of the Hitler Youth and the Nazified education system, the hold of the Church over its congregation would be broken and the Catholic and Confessing churches would disappear from the life of the people in their present form. It was a sentiment from which Hitler himself did not dissent.

Or this from the same book:

>In July 1935...a speaker told a meeting of the Nazi Students' League in Bernau: 'One is either a Nazi or a committed Christian.' Christianity, he said, 'promotes the dissolution of racial ties and of the national racial community...We must repudiate the Old and the New Testaments, since for us the Nazi idea alone is decisive. For us there is only one example, Adolf Hitler and no one else."

The "cult of personality" makes no room for any other person, living or dead, at the top of the adoration pyramid. Hitler used religion as he saw fit to gain power and respectability, but had as much religion in him as our modern right wingers with their "do as I say not as I do, I've had my fun and I've had yours too" approach to morality.

u/PuddingInferno · 7 pointsr/politics

> I always wondered how did German people allow things to get how they did.

I highly encourage you to read They Thought They Were Free: The Germans, 1933-45.

It's terrifying.

u/KyotoWolf · 7 pointsr/history

It's an extract from the book They Thought They Were Free: The Germans by Milton Mayer. The full book gives a more detailed view with examples.

u/jschooltiger · 7 pointsr/AskHistorians

I am glad that you referenced Roger's book. His related book, The Safeguard of the Sea, looks at Britain's (England's, Wessex's, etc.) navy from 660-1649 and is also an excellent read.

If you don't mind, I would expand on your comment to say this: One of the major arguments that both books make is that a major contributor to Britain's naval success was also the bureaucracy that grew up around the Navy. We tend to think of bureaucracy in negative terms today, but in having a regularized, systemic way of casting and distributing guns and ordnance; building and repairing ships; victualling ships; and manning ships, the British navy was far ahead of its competitors, even by the time of the Armada.

It's also worth pointing out that Britain's naval strength was helped by the establishment of dockyards, drydocks, and associated naval "bases" (although that's an anachronistic term) in various places, including the Thames and Portsmouth but also in other places along England's coast. Not to put too fine a point on it, but wooden ships rot, and regular maintenance was a major reason why Britain was able to keep up its naval strength.

This moves a bit past OP's timeframe, but allow me to recommend two other books by Robert K. Massie, that specifically look at the Anglo-German naval race in the run-up to World War I:

u/lud1120 · 7 pointsr/europe

Uhh... this is what various immigrants that want to integrate and blend into an other society has done for centuries. Long list here for those that moved to the USA or Great Britain for example some relatives of mine changed their name from a Polish Jewish name to a Swedish-sounding name, and nobody thought they were Jewish after that, despite one of them was leading a watchmaker organization. A bulk of German and Polish jews also considered themselves German or Polish first and foremost, but thousands of German "half-Aryans" were spared of life to serve in WW2 and sometimes even granted "full-Aryan" status such as field Marshal of the Luftwaffe, Erhard Milch while half-Poles and even quarter-Poles were sent to extermination camps as if they were fully Jewish. An acclaimed book was published on the subject by Bryan Mark Rigg

u/DMVBornDMVRaised · 6 pointsr/PoliticalHumor

So what earns them the title? Do you realize the Nazi's spent a decade and a half doing exactly what was done in Charlottesville? Like exactly? Why are you talking out of your ass on such an easily researchable topic?

Start here...

The Coming of the Third Reich

And do yourself a favor and don't speak again on this topic until you are done with it. At least that.

u/vonHindenburg · 6 pointsr/MachinePorn

I’d highly recommend Robert Massie’s Castles of Steel for an excellent overview of the naval conflict of WWI. He goes into great detail about the ramifications of the submarine campaign and how it ultimately pulled America into the war.

Previous to WWI, commerce raiding was done by well-armed ships which would force a merchantman to stop, board, determine its nationality, pull off the crew, and then scuttle the ship. Initially, submarines attempted to follow this model. Unfortunately, they had no space or crew to detain potentially hostile passengers and enemy crews. Furthermore, they were extremely fragile things and, once the British began using Q ships (merchantmen with naval crews and hidden guns), the Germans could no longer risk surfacing and engaging with gunfire.

These factors, compounded with the problem of identifying a ship’s (possibly fake) flag from a dim periscope a few feet above the waves lead the Germans to declare the entire North Sea a battle zone in which any ship of any nationality might be fired upon. It was this factor, which America saw as an unjust abrogation of its rights as a neutral, combined with the loss of American lives and ships from the submarine campaign that drew the nation into the war.

u/leadfoot323 · 6 pointsr/WarshipPorn

That is awesome! I'm currently reading "Castles of Steel" on my Kindle so any photos in the book don't really turn out. But this is great. It's incredible to see the Imperial German fleet all together like this.

u/GodoftheCopyBooks · 6 pointsr/changemyview

> I don't deny facts or anything, thats not who I am.

If you're a communist, you are either denying facts or advocating genocide. Your pick which you are.

>For the events you linked, the evidence backing death counts is widely sporadic. 2 to 12 million people? That's a ridiculous range that would be thrown away in any other circumstance.

there are very precise estimates of the deaths. but "we killed so many people we lost track of how many died" is NOT a good argument for your ideology of choice.

> My point in mentioning how capitalism is responsible for millions of deaths every day

you can mention things that aren't true all you want, that doesn't make them good arguments. There are 8 billion people alive on the planet today, almost all of them because of capitalism.

> Due to man-made limitations on health care access

This phrase makes zero sense. man made limits on healthcare? Where do you think healthcare comes from? It doesn't grow on trees. People have to make it, they have to learn to become doctors, have to produce medicine, etc. Under capitalism, people are rewarded for doing that, so lots of healthcare is produced. Communism did not pave the way in medical science and practice, capitalist countries did.

> Its not even remotely the same as denying the holocaust.

It's exactly the same. You're denying the crimes of people you are ideologically sympathetic towards. If anything, that's worse that holocaust denialism. Most holocaust deniers, while awful people, don't say hitler had a bunch of ideas that were really good, just poorly implemented.

>I can tell you have a hatred of communism and for that reason you aren't providing anything constructive for someone like me. Thanks for the attempt though.

if 100 million corpses wasn't enough to change your mind, I certainly don't expect to.

u/salvage · 6 pointsr/technology

Right, but he didn't experience the German's persecution directly, only their willing executioners.

u/ppphhh · 6 pointsr/pics

Doesn't make him a bad guy. His book Inside The Third Reich is fascinating.

u/HomoFerox_HomoFaber · 6 pointsr/todayilearned

King Leopold II to be specific.

And he devastated the Congo. This is a book everyone should read.

Also, this book is an essential read on "ordinary men" in a Nazi reserve batallion and how they coped with (or outright enjoyed) the tasks entrusted to them. Some ran away, some drank themselves to oblivion, severe depression, etc.

u/Syjefroi · 6 pointsr/worldnews

> But almost all of the Nazi command were fairly ordinary.

Interesting choice of words. A well known book was written about the folks far lower down the chain, the regular troops. Ordinary Men. It goes into where these guys came from, how they got through the gig, etc. Indeed, they were ordinary men, and they did extraordinarily evil things. Very much worth a read, it very methodically goes through the process of how regular folks got broken down to the point of committing terrible crimes.

u/Patchknight · 6 pointsr/HistoryMemes

I'd suggest reading this book.

Your pop understanding of the Holocaust lacks nuance. Soldiers who refused to participate in war crimes were hardly 'Gestapo'd'. They were allowed to stay in the barracks - though they'd usually 'come around' due to peer pressure. People who criticized the Nazis were quietly deplatformed, but only radicals like antifascists and communists were black-bagged. Ghettos and cattle car shipments were public. Slave camps in Germany were adjacent to civilian centers to facilitate transportation.

The extinction of the untermensch was a popular directive in Germany. People knew and believed and acquiesced not under the jackboot'd pressure of tyranny but out of the logical conclusion of fascism.

u/landb4timethemovie · 6 pointsr/answers

Many of those responsible for the worst of the Nazi's atrocities, such as mass killings of Jews in Poland and Russia (e.g. rounding up all of the Jews men, women, and children in a particular Polish town ~3000 in all and shooting them), were members of reserve German police and could be considered "normal" citizens not really politically affiliated with the Nazi party. Many (not all) were from humble backgrounds, young, not very educated, not very wealthy and did regular police work until the Nazi party/Himmler reconfigured such reserves into death squad-like battalions carrying out extermination efforts.

The author of this one book I recently read went through hundreds of firsthand accounts from such complicit men to see how everyday Germans could possibly be swept into committing such horrible war crimes. As an Amazon review says, some factors included "cowardice, ideological indoctrination, loyalty to the battalion, and reluctance to force the others to bear more than their share of what each viewed as an excruciating duty." In one particular passage I remember, members of one of these death squad battalions were told that participation in another one of these mass murders was not mandatory, was not forced, and the Germans were allowed to take some rest if they were not up to it this time around. Though like the quote above says, many of those who decided reluctantly to continue did so not because they were particularly geared up to do so out of faithfulness to the Nazi racial ideology or what have you, but because it was their duty within their battalion. Often on nights after having carried out such missions, commanders would allow/encourage draftees into drinking a lot to "forget."

Still, for me too, it's difficult to see from a modern point of view, just how almost an entire society could have sunken into savagery under Hitler. In the end, the implementation of the Final Solution rested on the complicity of the individual in playing their part and its difficult to say exactly why each person went along with it.

u/zellman · 6 pointsr/polandball

> Flirting with fascism

I think you meant flirting with totalitarianism. America is very far away from Fascism, but it flirts with totalitarianism with those acts you mentioned.

But your point was not wrong. Have you ever read "Ordinary Men"? Basically, the guys who shot jews in cold blood were often just normal guys, no weird background, or even crazy views...things just got out of control.

u/Gizortnik · 6 pointsr/KotakuInAction

It's not a mental condition, it's normal human psychology that technology has pathologized into a profit motive.

That should really be the most terrifying aspect of this. These are absolutely normal people who can be ushered forward by ideology to commit unspeakable horror.

u/SacaSoh · 6 pointsr/brasil

Naked Economics - conforme /u/jpjandrade recomendou (a Economia Nua e Crua em PT-BR) é sensacional, o tipo de livro que dá vontade de comprar 10 para dar de presente.

Outro um pouco mais avançado é Basic Economics: A Common Sense Guide to the Economy, o qual creio não ter edição em PTBR ainda.

De história vai depender muito do seu gosto... os de economia são simples de escolher pois o básico da economia é o seu próprio núcleo... história é muito ampla...

Eu adoro história e devo ter uns 50 livros, sendo uns 20 sobre episódios específicos da Segunda Guerra. Recomendo os seguintes livros como sendo bons mesmo pra quem nunca leu nada a respeito (creio que todos os abaixos existam em PTBR, caso não leia em Inglês):

The Crusades: The Authoritative History of the War for the Holy Land;

Black Hawk Down: A Story of Modern War - Se gostou do filme, o livro é sensacional - totalmente baseado nos relatos das unidades presentes em combate;

Stalingrad: The Fateful Siege: 1942-1943 - este livro é sensacional, se já ouviu alguma vez sobre a batalha de Stalingrado a leitura é obrigatória;

Por fim, caso goste de ciência (física e química especificamente) e de história militar, este foi o livro que mostrou pra mim que a ciência caminha de forma fantástica, e que muitas (se não todas) as explicações de descobertas são superhypermega simplificadas: The Making of the Atomic Bomb.

u/Louis_Farizee · 6 pointsr/Judaism

Because this is a serious question, I will give you an answer: no, this is absolutely nothing like that. This is a great resource on how the Nazis actually did what they did:

u/happyfuntime · 5 pointsr/todayilearned

The Rise and Fall of the Third Reich is huge, but very detailed on a lot of the higher-ranking German Soldiers during the war.

Of course, I read it in Germany on the Bahn -- a book with a swastika on the cover earns you strange looks.

u/-lotalota · 5 pointsr/MosinNagant

Get him some interesting ammo, you should be able to find at least four or five different varieties to test out, both commercial and surplus, if you go to a gun show. Maybe get him a book to provide some history relevant to use of the Mosin Nagant rifle, i thought this one was interesting It’s not as much inside baseball as some military history.

u/C4RB0NUN1T · 5 pointsr/funny

That book is The Rise and Fall of the Third Reich. It's a very good book if you want to learn about how Hitler rose to power and how the Nazi's were destroyed.

u/T3RM1NALxL4NC3 · 5 pointsr/gaming

My ideal Call of Duty would be Call of Duty: The Winter War

A campaign set in the Russo-Finnish War from 1939-1940. A Finnish Army of 40,000 Finns vs. the entire might of the USSR. Even though the Finns would eventually lose the war, they inflicted on the Soviets around 400k casualties by the end of hostilities. If you want to read about a largely unknown David v. Goliath conflict, read William Trotter's "A Frozen Hell" (Probably the best English language account of the war)

A sample of the insanity:

  • Having no anti-tank weapons, Finnish infantry would hide in holes and use crowbars to pry the treads off of tanks...
  • The Finns would change roadsigns to send the Russian columns over frozen lakes pre-sighted for artillery...
  • Finnish ski troops would carry out hit and run attacks on soup kitchens and warm weather storage so thousands of Soviets starved or froze
  • Simo Fucking Hayha
  • The 20mm Lahti rifle
  • The Mannerheim Line
  • The invention of the Molotov cocktail
  • Spas hidden in bunkers on the battlefield

    Ideally, the campaign would be broken up into three parts. A Simo Hayha storyline chronicling his achievements, a storyline following a unit of the elite Finnish ski infantry, and a third storyline following a teenager in the forested Mannerheim line battles of the late conflict.

    Shit would be epic and a man can dream...

u/You_Dont_Party · 5 pointsr/worldpolitics

>If you think Hitler/Stalin would have handled that the same way, you're ignorant of history.

Considering I have said nothing of the sort, I’m not sure why you’d think that’s a position anyone is taking. Seems like you’re just creating a strawman argument because the argument I made, that the right-wing loves to censor topics, is one you can’t argue against.

>People who think that Trump is a fascist don't have a gnats worth of knowledge what fascism is. Please open up a damn history book and read a thing.

Fascism isn’t only achieved through a Nazi state though, and rhetoric can certainly be fascistic without requiring a nation to reach the depths of becoming a full blown authoritarian hellscape.

Have you read Eco’s dissection of Italian fascism? Have you read about the Weimar Republic and the rise of Fascism in Germany?Perhaps you should, because you might understand the context of fascism in a non-fascistic state, and recognize the many valid comparisons it has to modern far-right ideology. Don’t take my word for it, I can point to any number of Holocaust survivors organizations which have stated the same thing about Trumps policies and rhetoric, and I’m sure they’d love to hear you tell them that they “don’t know a gnats worth of knowledge” about fascism.

u/kgm2s-2 · 5 pointsr/GetMotivated
u/Ahasuerus5000 · 5 pointsr/AskHistorians

I would recommend reading Stephen Harding's The Last Battle: When US and German Soldiers Joined Forces in the Waning Hours of WWII. The book depicts the events surrounding the last major engagement between American and Nazi forces of the war, which took place on May 4th, 1945 in the Austrian Tyrol, at a castle outside the town of Itter. Itter Castle had been used by the SS as a "VIP Prison" for French notables - including two former prime ministers, two former military chiefs of staff, and several other politicians the Nazis thought would be valuable in the post-war settlement that never came. After Hitler's suicide, as the Allies swept across Western Europe, Himmler ordered the prisoners killed, so a ragtag force consisting of a small American tank squad and Austrian Wehrmacht soldiers who had decided to support the anti-Nazi resistance defended the Castle and the French VIPs against an assault by a sizable contingent of Waffen-SS. Just one day later, the Nazi's unconditional surrender was signed.

The book, written by an American military historian, gives great insight into the tenuous and dangerous situation in rural Germany and Austria in the War's final days. Many Wehrmacht soldiers decided to lay down their arms, but there were still roving bands of SS men who were aggressively resisting the Allies' advances and generally harassing anyone who they suspected of being a "defeatist" or supporting the resistance. Definitely check out Harding's book if you're interested in this period. The story he tells will make a great movie someday.

More info:

Source: I finished reading the book yesterday.

u/geminitx · 5 pointsr/todayilearned

I've been reading a book about this called The Last Battle. AMAZING book that has completely reshaped my thinking of the regular German army during WWII.

u/KapitanKurt · 5 pointsr/WarshipPorn

Yes, there's a big distinction. Here's a link that scratches the surface of dreadnought background & development to get you started.

If you get really curious, here's two books that round out the subject of how dreadnoughts fit into naval history...

u/neinmeinstein · 5 pointsr/AskHistorians

I've specifically read documented cases of it happening during the Holodomor, as well as among [Soviet prisoners of war]( (a group of Holocaust victims that are often overlooked, ignored, or simply not included).

Off the top of my head I can't recall ever reading about cannibalism happening inside the concentration camps. This does not mean that it didn't happen, and logic would tell us it almost certainly did. However getting caught engaging in cannibalism would almost certainly be a capital offense. Furthermore there is the cultural stigma that it carries. These factors would contribute to participants remaining silent on the matter.

Other factors would include a lack of the necessary free time required to engage in it (daily schedules for prisoners were meticulous, and purposefully designed to ensure very little free time and privacy), a lack of method for preparing a body for consumption (some barracks had stoves but they were usually in the middle of the room and therefore constantly under scrutiny, and then you have to think about the tools that would be required to butcher a corpse. It would be very difficult to butcher meat without a knife, and where do you get that in a concentration camp?), and finally the fact that any bodies that would be available for consumption would almost certainly be severely malnourished and therefore not a great source of nutrition (and it's not like humans are an ideal source of food to begin with).

However, knowing what we know about starvation, it almost certainly did happen. At some point when human beings' needs are not met, we WILL revert to our baser instincts. I have read accounts that inmates would beat or kill over matters of food. Fistfights would often break out in the meal lines (your place in line could easily determine whether you would get food that day). Inmates would eat food regardless of its condition. Even if food was moldy, dirty, soggy, or stale, it would still be eaten. I've read that when soup was spilled, inmates would drop to their hands and knees and suck at the mud in order to get a few drops. In addition to the simple needs of humans, food could also be used for bribes and favors.

If you have any clarifying questions, please don't hesitate to ask.

EDIT: As far as bugs and rodents, I again can't recall any specific instances, but when you're starving to death, you'll eat anything. Conditions in the camp certainly attracted all sorts of vermin, so they were definitely available to those that could devise a way of catching and eating them.


Bloodlands: Europe Between Hitler and Stalin

Hitler's Death Camps: The Sanity of Madness

Maus: A Survivor's Tale

u/Boredeidanmark · 5 pointsr/worldnews

You may want to read up on how the USSR treated ethnic minorities. A lot of it is covered in Bloodlands by Yale historian Timothy Snyder.

In short - a lot of murdering and ethnic cleansing.

u/Nrussg · 5 pointsr/AskHistorians

The German Confederation was created as a replacement for the Holy Roman Empire, and built on the same lines. The portion of Prussia you are talking about, called Ducal Prussia, is not actually part of the Holy Roman Empire. It was originally polish before falling under the principality of Brandenburg and eventually separating from Polish vassalage. Due to weird legalities, the Prince of Brandenburg eventually added the tittle of King in Prussia (Only the King of Bohemia was allowed to be both a king and a member of the Holy Roman Empire, so the Prince of Brandenburg was circumventing this rule by becoming king in territory technically outside the HRE.) Eventually people just started calling the Prince of Brandenburg the King of Prussia, but the territory was never brought in the HRE because of this technicality. When the lines of the Confederation were drawn they maintained this distinction.

Most of this info come from Iron Kingdom which is a great read, but you probably don't want to read 700 pages to answer a small question.

u/zenmasterzen3 · 5 pointsr/conspiracy

Good question, I haven't read the book:

>Contrary to conventional views, Rigg reveals that a startlingly large number of German military men were classified by the Nazis as Jews or "partial-Jews" (Mischlinge), in the wake of racial laws first enacted in the mid-1930s. Rigg demonstrates that the actual number was much higher than previously thought-perhaps as many as 150,000 men, including decorated veterans and high-ranking officers, even generals and admirals.

u/CoruscantSunset · 5 pointsr/rage

Obviously these girls are assholes who should be kicked in the teeth, but this is a pet peeve of mine. Not every person who kills an animal and doesn't care is a potential serial killer.

Some people are just assholes who don't think that animals have any value.

I mean, Hitler was a vegetarian (according to The Rise and Fall of the Third Reich), an antivivisectionist and (according to the same book linked above) around the time that Hitler joined the German Worker's Party he was so concerned about the hunger of mice he used to leave bread on the floor of his room for them at night.

One man's concern for the welfare of animals didn't translate into a concern for human beings. Another person's cruelty to animals doesn't mean they'll be cruel to people.

u/MichaelClarkeDuncan · 5 pointsr/neutralnews

Maybe to you, but plenty of the guys working in the death camps weren't people who signed up for that, many or most were just regular civil servants who didn't have a choice. It's easy to sit back on reddit and judge them, but the people working those death camps may be more like yourself than you're comfortable admitting. Ordinary Men by Browning is a good monograph on this topic. So you can say that I have the distinction of not willingly participating, but plenty of these participants we now look at as monsters weren't willing either, but they didn't have a choice. I'm not saying they're saints, but the situation isn't as easy as we would like to imagine.

u/-Cryptomaniac- · 5 pointsr/HistoryPorn

I cannot recommend reading this book enough


You should not be shocked that humans are capable of this. Chances are if it were you or me in that position, we would have done the same thing.

u/Blacksheep01 · 5 pointsr/HistoryPorn

What you wrote is only partially accurate. Check out Ordinary Men I recommend this book to everyone interested in the topic of how and why regular Germans participated in the Holocaust.

The reason I mention it here is that the batallion was asked to murder thousands of Jews, many agreed, yet multiple individuals refused and do you know what happened to them? Nothing, nothing at all, the Germans not only didn't punish those who refused, they weren't even looked down on. So it begs the question, how forced were German police units/soldiers? How much of the violence was driven by individuals? What if entire units refused? Some of those questions are unanswerable but the one answer provided in this work is compelling. That German soldiers could say "no" and they would not be punished.

u/Nerfball3000 · 5 pointsr/JordanPeterson

He’s actually referencing the book Ordinary Men. It’s an account of some of the horrors that went down in Poland during the final solution. It tells the story of a battalion of German police officers who basically would have to go in after the army had “captured a region” and do the dirty work of not only loading people on to trains to be sent to the death camps, but were also later slowly coerced into killing thousands of people by executing them in the forests and farm land surrounding the towns that had been captured. This is the book in case you’re interested.

u/Tempest_1 · 5 pointsr/history

Yes, Hitler made tons of tactical blunders with Russia. Timing was his biggest blunder (he should have waited to invade). But even then he had assembled a 6million man army that proceeded to crush Russian forces for the first couple months. The defeats only came with trying to take Moscow and Stalingrad. Many historians conjecture that if Hitler had diverted forces to the oil fields in the Caucasus instead of Stalingrad, the Eastern Front would have looked much differently for the Germans.

If you haven't This is a great book on the subject

u/omaca · 5 pointsr/history

The Battle for Spain by Anthony Beevor is considered the definitive, modern single volume history of this conflict.

Beevor is renowned for his justifiably famous books Stalingrad, D-Day and The Fall of Berlin.

u/Gulchgamer · 5 pointsr/history

The German Wehrmacht did use flame throwers. And they were very effective during WWII. However flame thrower operators were always high priority targets and therefore were offered bonuses. For reference please read Anthony Beevor's book Stalingrad.

Also the US Marine Corps while fighting the Japanese loved using flame throwers against bunkers.

u/owlie_ · 4 pointsr/MorbidReality

Oh, you once read? Well then it must be true.

u/TheGuineaPig21 · 4 pointsr/canada

Yes, actually. First of all the SS was a volunteer force (before 1943, when conscripts started to be transferred into the Waffen SS). The Einsatzgruppen were also volunteers-only. Furthermore, because of psychological casualties among units tasked with carrying out mask executions, it was common to transfer out of these units on request. Participating in mass executions was typically voluntary. Ordinary Men is an excellent history about a police battalion that was used as an execution unit which goes into a lot of the details about this.

Finally, there is not a single recorded instance of a German serviceman being executed for refusing to kill a civilian. (need jstor to read it)

This notion that individual Germans were somehow not at fault for joining the SS, joining mobile death squads, and then executing Jews/Poles/POWs/"partisans" whatever is mind-boggling

u/SplendourFalls · 4 pointsr/AskHistorians

The way you've phrased this question caught my attention, and I'd like to point you in the direction of what I think is one of the most important books ever written about the Second World War:

Ordinary Men by Christopher Browning tries to explain how a group of apolitical middle-aged men who weren't even professional soldiers, guys who had reached adulthood long before Hitler took power, men who weren't particularly anti-Semitic and didn't vote for the Nazis, became enthusiastic executioners of thousands upon thousands of Jews.

The process that turned law-abiding, conscientious citizens into murderers was an intricate and subtle process and cannot and never will be explained by simplifications like 'brainwashing' or 'the Nazis were all psychopaths', and that's the point Browning tries to get at in his book.

There are other books like Daniel Goldhagen's Hitler's Willing Executioners which argue that Germans have always been hell-bent on the elimination of the Jewish race since the beginning of time which will answer your question in a way that will make you feel much more comfortable, if that's what you want. If not, Browning's your man.

u/missginj · 4 pointsr/AskHistorians

Christopher Browning, Ordinary Men. How did the Nazi regime get ordinary men to commit genocide? A fascinating, compelling, sometimes horrifying read. The words and experiences of the men of Reserve Police Battalion 101 (which was assigned to Nazi-occupied Poland), gleaned from 1960s interrogations, are very present and alive in the text.

u/Asshole_for_Karma · 4 pointsr/worldnews

Well how about we just assume Hitler killed a 'shit-ton' of people in gas chambers and furnaces? Is that a number we can agree on?

And while there is some lack of concrete evidence, we can assume that the number 6 million was not pulled out of a historian's ass.

For instance, reports written by camp guards or death squads that survived the massive paper-shredding that the Nazis performed at the end of the war? See the book Ordinary Men for just one regiment's recounting of the 'Final Solution'.

u/Urist_Galthortig · 4 pointsr/history

This is the first in a Trilogy by Evans. Excellent research, and when ready today, while still very different from the United States, will seem closer than you would like. When he starts explaining about how journalism fractured into political journalism along ideological lines, you can see the same problems we suffer today.

Also, a highlight for the section explaining what happened to Adolf Hitler after the Beerhall Putsch. He talks about the country put him in a deluxe cell, and his probation was no public speaking for five years. They came and went.

u/TheLongSeventiesPod · 4 pointsr/history

While this is interesting for its uniqueness, there is a book called "Hitler's Table Talk" that is much more extensive.

u/justausername99 · 4 pointsr/WWII

The Rise and Fall of the Third Reich: A History of Nazi Germany

This book has it all: Hitler's youth, the roots of his hatred for jews, the brown shirts, how he was elected into office...on and on. 1500 pages or so.

u/mikecsiy · 4 pointsr/badhistory

Yeah... for that perspective I'd highly recommend They Thought They Were Free by Milton Mayer.

He interviews and forms relationships with around a dozen citizens of a small town in Hesse over the course of a decade or so about their experiences and thoughts during the rise of Nazism and the following years.

u/absolutspacegirl · 4 pointsr/worldnews

>The center's findings come after Communist Party members earlier this month called for streets to be renamed and monuments to be erected to Stalin throughout Russia ahead of celebrations in May marking 70 years since the Soviet victory over Nazi Germany, the Kommersant newspaper reported.
Asked by the Levada Center how they felt about the initiative, 39 percent of Russians said they would back plans for erecting a monument to Stalin, who was supreme commander in chief of the Soviet army during World War II.

That's fucked up. Everyone needs to read 'The Bloodlands: Europe Between Hitler and Stalin' by Timothy Snyder. I'd venture to say Stalin was worse than Hitler after reading that.

u/EIREANNSIAN · 4 pointsr/videos

I was a bit of a history nerd in school and university, still am a bit, I'm not a historian by any stretch of the imagination. The North Africa theatre is fascinating, and can be somewhat disassociated from the war crimes narrative that accompanies most of the Wehrmacht's campaigns, as it was fought in a somewhat 'gentlemanly' fashion. If you have any interest in the real WW2 I cannot recommend Timothy Snyder's 'Bloodlands' as a primer, great book about the Eastern Front:

u/commonslip · 4 pointsr/Physics

I recommend the following book on the subject: The Variational Principle Of Mechanics which elaborates on the relationship between the two views much more effectively than I can.

u/ranger_steve · 4 pointsr/history

A little late but here is another book, written by Speer himself while imprisioned in Spandau. The first half of the book reveals several of the drawings and models of structures visualized for construction after the war.

[Albert Speer, Inside the Third Reich]

u/myndzha · 4 pointsr/ImGoingToHellForThis - a half Jewish soldier of Nazi regime that became so popular and famous he even became a poster boy.

The Jews who fought for Hitler: 'We did not help the Germans. We had a common enemy'

When Hitler Honored Jewish Soldiers, as many as 100,000

Hell, there are even books written on this with all the proof you could ever want.

foto of African Nazi soldier

The idea behind the holocaust was not to exterminate the Jews but take the wealth away from wealthy Jews. War/genocide is the best disguise and the elite never cared how many peasants will die.
These aren't even my juicy sources, i was too lazy to dig them up.

u/Drooperdoo · 4 pointsr/todayilearned

No, my point was that he was a largely "irrelevant player". This movement preceded him. It was funded by very powerful people [like Rockefeller and Carnegie] back when Hitler was a starving hobo.

Hitler is now the poster child for the movement, but the reality is that he had very little to do with it.

We're all programed today to lay everything on Hitler's doorstep, and to do otherwise is treated as a thought-crime. It's not even permissible to show a wider context.

(Why can't we show this wider context? Because our side gets implicated in the larger dragnet. So we're encouraged to isolate Hitler. To pretend as if he acted alone. As if all these ideas of 'scientific racism' were original to him.)

I myself was shocked when I watched a BBC documentary on the Holocaust, and to see Germany's enemy [England] make a very textured case. According to the documentary, Hitler was a drug-addled basket-case with Parkinsons when the Holocaust took place. He would sleep in till 2pm in the afternoon. Most of the administrative decisions related to the Holocaust were actually carried out by Himmler. We have a direct papertrail to Himmler. Where not a single memo or document bears Hitler's signature, we find direct and unambiguous documentation leading to Himmler.

According to Albert Speer (and almost every other person who was there at the time) Himmler was the "true believer" in racial theory, whereas Hitler was a hypocrite. A demagogue, who (in his private life) acted quite differently than what his "official positions" were. Evidence of Hitler's hypocrisy even makes it into the mainstream media, at times. Like the fact that Hitler [unlike Himmler] took steps to protect certain Jews that he liked. For instance, his bodyguard [Emil Maurice] was part-Jewish. As was his cook. In addition, consider this Reuters article: "Hitler Protected Jewish World War One Vet":

Hitler also infuriated Himmler by having Jews in his top cabinet. Men like Erhard Milch, Wilhelm Keitel, Walther von Brauchitsch, Erich Raeder, and Maximilian von Weichs.

You'd never know this from Hollywood movies, but Hitler also had 150,000 Jews in the Germany army. See Mark Bryan Rigg's documented work on the subject:

The reality is: What we're operating on in a Hollywood caricature of what actually took place.

We're told "Hitler was this racial hardliner, who never deviated one iota from his stated ideology."

The truth?

The truth is that that narrative gives him too much character. It attributes to him a twisted morality, but an iron spine that refused to deviate from that moral code. The reality, however, is that he was a hypocrite and a demagogue, who didn't really believe his own rhetoric. And he definitely didn't act on it.

In the BBC documentary I watched, they related an anecdote where Hitler gave an order to "Germanize" the new Polish territory they'd taken over. Every new governor of the region interpreted "Germanize" as rounding up racial minorities and sticking them in camps. One governor interpreted the order to merely mean 'Hand out German passports to all the populace.' When Himmler heard of this "outrage," he demanded that Hitler remove him immediately. Hitler refused.

It was Himmler (not Hitler) who was the racial hardliner, the true believer. And that's why it's significant that when Hitler was incapacitated with Parkinsons [and on 37 different drugs, including meth and cocaine], all the orders related to the Holocaust emanated from Himmler's desk.

And this is the problem with the whole Hollywood time-travel fantasy of a sniper going back into the past to assassinate Hitler to stop the Holocaust. The reality is: Unless that man was shooting Himmler, the Holocaust would still have happened.

Hitler could never have been born and Germany would still have had eugenics programs from the Rockefeller Foundation.

He didn't invent any of this shit. (Though it's popular nowadays to pretend he did--to exonerate our side.)

  • Footnote: The reflexive impulse here will not be to refute any of what I've said (or any of the links I gave as my sources and citations). But to bypass logic and reason by invoking emotional arguments: "Why, you . . . you . . . you just like Hitler! That's what this is all about!" "You're just a Nazi apologist!" On the contrary. I despise Hitler. I just don't grant him the dignity of turning him into Darth Vader, with all the dark brilliance of Satan. I see him as more akin to George W. Bush, when the torture scandal broke in Iraq. Read "Mein Kampf". It's not this brilliant work of evil genius, stuffed with diabolical insights like Blake's "Proverbs From the Bible of Hell". It reads more like the incoherent ramblings of a Sarah Palin. We have this image built up of Hitler which gives him far more dignity than he deserves. Camus wrote, "The West's ideal of masculine beauty of Milton's Satan". So by turning Hitler into this "evil genius," we're imbuing him with a certain measure of "masculine beauty" and "badboy glamor". He doesn't deserve that lionization. He was a severely limited man, and a hypocrite. And toward the end [when the Holocaust happened] he was a Parkinson's-addled basketcase, cut off from almost all administrative decisions. A figurehead.
u/swampgiant · 4 pointsr/politics

"“He is seriously a globalist Jew, there is no question,” Trump continued. “But you know what, in his own way he’s a nationalist supporter of our fascist ideals because he loves our country.” In other words, yeah, he's Jew, but he's one of the good ones because he plays on our team.

This kind of talk reminds me of Hitler's honorary aryans. There's a book called "Hitler's Jewish Soldiers" that goes into detail with plenty of historical examples about the Third Reich's policies to make exemptions for certain "Untermensch". Trump's talk is straight out of Hitler's playbook.

For those interested: [Hitler's Jewish Soldiers] (

u/Hanginon · 4 pointsr/history

IMHO, here's a very good place to start learning about the European history of WW2. Get yourself to a Library, or better yet, just buy the book. It's a good, in depth look at what happened and how it happened.

u/Psyladine · 3 pointsr/OutOfTheLoop

You need to get your head out of your ass mate. They don't want to "meet the left halfway", they aren't interested in dialogue, or compromise, or getting along.

They would glady curb stomp you and piss on your corpse except it's just slightly against their favor right now. But every cringing waffling "surely we can talk through our differences!" type empowers them.

Since you enjoy edification, pick up a book next time.

u/happybadger · 3 pointsr/politics

They Thought They Were Free is another must-read. There's one quote from it which terrifies me because it's exactly what we're going through with trying to figure out the flashpoint that brings people into the streets.

I don't think there will ever be a perfect repetition of history or any historical figure, but we can at least look at the years that mirror ours and the traits he shares with other demagogues. 2018 is as much 1789 or 1848 as it is 1928 or 1932. He has the personality of a Mussolini with the ambitions of Lewis Levin with the ego of Hitler with the same audience that Huey Long had. All of these are a really bad combination if we face any sort of national crisis or economic downturn. Normalcy bias has killed so many people in the past that it can't dictate how we respond to today and tomorrow.

u/maggiesguy · 3 pointsr/TrueReddit

If you have time, I highly recommend reading that entire book. The whole thing is fascinating because it dives down to the personal level with interviews with Germans who lived through the whole process.

The book's a little awkward to read in public though, what with the big swastika on the cover. I got more than a few strange looks on the train.

u/Indyhouse · 3 pointsr/TheLastAirbender

There's an awesome book out I learned about today called "They Thought They Were Free" ( about the perception everyday Germans had during World War II. Most were aware SOMEthing was wrong, but they were all mutually benefitting from whatever it was, so chose, some unconsciously to not say or do anything. Fascinating book. I'm about 3/4 through.

u/HermitageTheSapian · 3 pointsr/todayilearned

Yea, it seems like nobody takes protests seriously unless you're willing to become violent. Ghandi actually felt it the Jews in WW2 should have protested by walking into the ovens. Fascists are willing to kill, giving them an instant advantage over their nonviolent adversaries. The whole "their evil but they wouldn't actually black bag me and send me to a camp" mentality. Several excellent books have covered this trend in fascist uprisings.

u/enkrypt0r · 3 pointsr/todayilearned

Here's the link as opposed to the link which I_am_a_BalbC posted.

By the way, thanks for the summary, I_am_a_BalbC! This is fascinating stuff. Just bought the book. :)

u/dpitch40 · 3 pointsr/todayilearned

See also: The Last Battle, written about the battle by Stephen Harding.

u/cassander · 3 pointsr/history

Robert Massie is my favorite historian, and he has 3 amazing books on the period. Dreadnought, about the Anglo-German naval rivalry that led to WWI, Nicholas and Alexander, a biography of the last Czar and the fall of the Russian Empire, and the beautifully titled Castles of Steel, about the naval battles of WWI.

u/JimDandy_ToTheRescue · 3 pointsr/WarshipPorn

I have a Time-Life book titled Dreadnought which concentrates on the time period of 1900 thru 1919. At least a couple very large chapters are dedicated to Jutland.

Castles of Steel: Britain, Germany and the Winning of the Great War at Sea by Robert K. Massie is also right up your alley. Jutland is the centerpiece of the book.

u/wheres_my_vestibule · 3 pointsr/Physics

The Variational Principles of Mechanics by Lanczos is an amazing book for understanding calculus of variations. The majority of it covers ODEs rather than PDEs / field equations, but to be honest the book is so good that the generalization to field theory is almost obvious. It does have a chapter or two on fields though. The book has the most beautiful economy of words I've ever seen in a textbook, concise and yet crystal clear. Also, the book is cheap! Just $16 at Amazon right now. It's definitely written for physicists, it's not a math book at all.

I can't say enough good things about this book. Reading it was the first time I understood calculus of variations. He actually explains what you are doing conceptually when you vary a path, whereas I feel like most physics books introduce it solely as a mathematical manipulation. I finally gained a good intuition for it.

My introduction to calculus of variations in field theory came through classical electrodynamics in Landau & Lifshitz and Jackson. I agree that those books don't tell you at all how it works; they just start performing manipulations and you just follow what they do.

u/Echolate · 3 pointsr/Physics

Anyone had any first hand experience with Lancazos' Variational Principles of Mechanics?. I'm almost through Landau's Mechanics and was interested in learning more about the action principle, although I don't have any background in the calculus of variations and such.

u/weforgottenuno · 3 pointsr/Physics

Yes, it is definitely focussed on variational calculus, but I still found it highly readable. It is also far from out of print: it's available as a Dover paperback:

u/dnd_in_op · 3 pointsr/history

I liked Iron Kingdom by Christopher Clark.

u/ac312 · 3 pointsr/history

Came here looking for Frederick. I'm reading Iron Kingdom now and I'm finding him to be an especially fascinating figure. I think I'll look for a good biography after I'm through with the other book.

u/Tangurena · 3 pointsr/AskReddit

It doesn't.

Child porn is the moral panic of our age. Like Reagan's Welfare Queen, or the "satanic ritual" panics of the 80s and 90s, the stuff does not exist, but instead causes fear and terror in the population: Something Must Be Done!™.

I do not believe that child porn exists in real life: I have never seen it, nor has any person I have ever met in real life seen it. It only exists as some boogeyman to terrorize unsuspecting dupes into submission. Some "enemy" must exist for the fascists, whether that "enemy" exists in real life or not is irrelevant. The media shrills stuff up until everyone is willing to hand over all authority (and everything else) to those in power. One book to read on how this shit happens is Hitler's Willing Executioners

The logged data exists to find you guilty of something. Downloading, or wikilinks or filesharing - those are other moral panics. It will be used to testify against you when The Man wants to put you away for something. Anything.

u/thisisbecomingabsurd · 3 pointsr/singularity

A lot of people consciously/subconsciously want an excuse to exploit other people, and the easiest way is often to think of them as objects not people.

For sex:

For power:

For conquest:

For meaning:

For varying personal reasons:

u/F4ultyL0g1c · 3 pointsr/history

Agreed. The book Hitler’s Willing Executioners explains this really well.

Hitler's Willing Executioners: Ordinary Germans and the Holocaust

u/bloodfyr · 3 pointsr/AskHistorians
  1. One of the reasons mankind was able to proliferate so well during the late Pleistocene was, as they moved out of tropical areas, they encountered fewer viruses, parasites, and infectious agents as they moved into temperate regions and the ones that were there were not adapted yet to "handle" man.

  2. I'm currently reading Speer's memoirs, Inside the Third Reich. I'm fascinated with authoritarian governments and will probably be picking up something else on my morbid obsession, North Korea, once I'm done.
u/Wikkoe · 3 pointsr/ShitWehraboosSay

I couldn't name a specific source off the top of my head, but I just remembered seeing a statistic of like 3500 being thrown around. So I decided to go looking. In my search, I found an article that says there were 150,000. But Rense isn't exactly what I'd call reliable.

However, there's also this book that puts it at 150,000 Jews. As it says in the description, "mischlings" are included in the total number. But I haven't personally read it, so it could be shoddy and terrible for all I know.

However, like the "muh diverse waffen-ss" people, to imply this is in any way indicative of the Nazis being tolerant, cool guys is completely erroneous. I mean, it says right there further into the description that they ended up fucking over even the Jews that fought for them as well.

u/Nomandate · 3 pointsr/politics

Instead of spending your time on people like him, read some interesting books.

u/CAPS_4_FUN · 3 pointsr/NoStupidQuestions

As many as 150,000 actually did:
Many were allowed to simply just go back to Palestine:

The rest were considered traitors for starting the civil war of the 1918 and agitating the allies and turning them against Germany. Why would you allow your enemy within your armed forces?

u/Afin12 · 3 pointsr/nfl

I read Rise and Fall of the Third Reich back when I was in high school. I've since started listening to it again on audio book.

I highly highly recommend it, it is the best book on Nazi Germany that I have ever read. It is written by journalist William L. Shirer, who was a correspondent for US media in the years leading up to the war and he continued to live in Berlin until the US and Germany went to war and he was asked to leave the country.

u/beebMeUp · 3 pointsr/HistoryPorn

Timeless question indeed. Dehumanization is a necessary condition but it's deeper than that alone. Inside each of us lurks this beast.

I recommend Ordinary Men by Christopher Browning. There's also a recent lecture on the topic.

u/MuffinMedic · 3 pointsr/AskHistorians

Ordinary Men by Christopher Browning does a really great job of explaining much of what was done to the Jews over time.

u/Vitalstatistix · 3 pointsr/politics

I'd like to see your source on that story. I was taught by this man, and I distinctly remember numerous discussions on the topic, and that Nazi soldiers weren't punished for not killing Jews or any of the other persecuted individuals. The Nazi command who set the policy on these matters, viewed the extermination of Jews/Gypsies/Gays etc. as a difficult but necessary task; they simultaneously felt pity for, and glorified their soldiers, who were heroes doing what was best for the Aryan nation by squashing out the succubus races/nations of individuals.

So, while there was definitely strong social pressure to kill in order to fit in, move up the ranks, etc., there wasn't any formal military policy on punishing those who did not feel up to the task, which is one of the more frightening aspects of the whole situation.

Read more:


u/TheSwellFellow · 3 pointsr/ShitWehraboosSay

Easy one is Ordinary Men by Christopher Browning

Another good one is Becoming Evil by James Waller

BOTH of these directly address "normal" soldiers killing massive numbers of civilians. They will destroy any Wehraboo.

Also the Third Reich Trilogy by Richard Evans... Anything by Ian Kershaw.

u/randysgoiter · 3 pointsr/JoeRogan

I'm in the middle of Homo Deus currently. Its great so far, Yuval is a great writer and his books are a lot more accessible than traditional history books. I'm sure there are a lot of liberties taken with some of the history but I think Sapiens is a must-read. Homo Deus is more assumption based on current reality but its very interesting so far.

Gulag Archipelago is one I read based on the recommendation of Jordan Peterson. Awesome book if you are into WW1-WW2 era eastern europe. being an eastern european myself, i devour everything related to it so this book tickled my fancy quite a bit. good look into the pitfalls of what peterson warns against.

Black Earth: The Holocaust as History and Warning is another history book discussing that time period and how it all transpired and the lesser known reasons why WW2 went down the way it did. some surprising stuff in that book related to hitler modeling europe around how the united states was designed at the time.

apologies for inundating with the same topic for all my books so far but Ordinary Men is an amazing book chronicling the people that carried out most of the killings during WW2 in Poland, Germany and surrounding areas. The crux of the argument which I have read in many other books is that Auschwitz is a neat little box everyone can picture in their head and assign blame to when in reality most people killed during that time were taken to the outskirts of their town and shot in plain sight by fellow townspeople, mostly retired police officers and soldiers no longer able for active duty.

for some lighter reading i really enjoy jon ronson's books and i've read all of them. standouts are So You've Been Publicly Shamed and The Psychopath Test. Highly recommend Them as well which has an early Alex Jones cameo in it.

u/tirril · 3 pointsr/worldnews

Not being able to stomach it is something that changes over time. This should be part of history curriculum perhaps as soon as high school. Read Ordinary Men

u/Whiskeyjack1989 · 3 pointsr/JordanPeterson

The book is Ordinary Men.

u/lsop · 3 pointsr/HistoryPorn

The Book you are talking about is Ordinary Men by Chris Browning

u/killyouintheface · 3 pointsr/buccos

> …whoever wrote Guns of the South.

Harry Turtledove.

Mostly I read war stuff. Storm of Steel, The Guns of August, shit like that. I really, really want to read this. Think it'll probably be my next Amazon purchase since I've given up finding it at the used store.

u/LaunchThePolaris · 3 pointsr/worldnews

This is a pretty good book on that subject.

u/LessQQMorePewPew · 3 pointsr/AskReddit

One of my favorite holocaust books is Ordinary Men link and is about a battalion of the Order Police and their experience in Poland. Some enjoyed killing, some were indifferent, some hated it and did it anyway, a few refused to do it, and then there were the Lithuanians.

u/hobbes305 · 3 pointsr/skeptic

>Do you have any non-Jewish sources?

I linked to the The United States Holocaust Memorial Museum (USHMM) website above. that isn't good enough for you?

United States Library of Congress: Nuremberg Trials

Ordinary Men : Reserve Police Battalion 101 and the Final Solution in Poland, New York, by Christopher Browning

u/OldHomeOwner · 3 pointsr/WorldWar2

As other users have said it wasn't just gas chambers, the nazi's used guns, herding people into building and starting them on fire, gas trucks and of course gas chambers. I would suggest yourself reading Ordinary Men it is a short book that explains the people behind the mass shooting deaths of millions in the East and the reason the nazi's changed to other forms. It is dark, it is depressing but it isn't technical, if you think your friend can handle it pass it on to him.

u/Noogisms · 3 pointsr/Documentaries

There is a great book about German Police Battalion 101 called Ordinary Men... it demonstrates how pre-war these citizen police officers were simple, ordinary people (just like you and me); but during the war, 85% of these citizens became monsters. After the war, most had no problem resuming civilian lifestyles.

There are many detailed comparisons / conclusions made with the Milgram Prison Experiments, as well as an updated chapter at the end in response to some of the criticisms towards his original text.

u/Stratocratic · 3 pointsr/history
u/rjrrzube · 3 pointsr/history

Try this: ... looks like a good book. Appears to discuss disease.

u/Feuersturm-CA · 3 pointsr/history

Most of my knowledge regarding the matter is European, so I'm going to give a list of my favorites regarding the European / African front.

To get the German perspective of the war, I'd recommend:

  • Panzer Commander - Hans von Luck - One of my favorites

  • Panzer Leader - Heinz Guderian - He developed Blitzkrieg tactics

  • The Rommel Papers - Erwin Rommel - Written by my favorite German Field Marshal up until his forced suicide by Hitler. Good read of the Western and African theaters of war. Also a good book to read if you're interested in what German command was doing on the lead up to D-Day.

    I have a few battle-specific books I enjoy too:

  • Stalingrad: The Fateful Siege 1942-1943 - You really don't know the brutality of Stalingrad till you've read this book. You'll see it in a whole new light I think.

  • Berlin: Downfall 1945 - Battle of Berlin at the end of the war, another good book.

    Now if you want to play games, Hearts of Iron series is great (someone recommended the Darkest Hour release of the game. Allows you to play historical missions based on historical troop layouts, or play the entire war as a nation. Historical events are incorporated into the game. While you'll rarely get a 100% accurate game as it is abstracted, it is an excellent way to see what challenges faced the nations of the time. You could play as Russia from 1936 and prepare yourself for the eventual German invasion. Or maybe you decide to play as Germany, and not invade Russia. But will Russia invade you when they are stronger? Will warn you: It does not have a learning curve. As with almost all Paradox Interactive games, it is a learning cliff.
u/lizardflix · 3 pointsr/HistoryPorn

Just finished [Fall of Berlin] ( which is a great account of that period and talks a little about how kids were forced into service in the final days.

u/Gorthol · 3 pointsr/CombatFootage

Read Anthony Beevor's The Fall of Berlin 1945. The whole thing was a god awful mess.

u/PaperbackWriter66 · 3 pointsr/progun

>The Nazis were pretty explicit about their intent.

Not actually true, really. Yes, Hitler and the NSDAP were explicit about their intent in the early 1920s, when they were getting 2% of the vote at most (I think in the 1928 elections they got something like 0.7% of the vote, if memory serves).

Then, once the Depression started and things were going from bad to worse, Hitler saw his political moment and he actually toned down his anti-Semitism and political extremism, toned down his attacks on capitalism and became more friendly to big business in much the same way the British Labour Party would in the later 1940s.

When one-third of the German people voted for Hitler in 1933, they were voting for a party which played to long-held German beliefs and prejudices (including anti-Semitism) about the need for a strongman like Otto von Bismarck rather than feeble parliamentary democracy, a party which appealed to Social Democratic notions of strong trade unions and welfare for the old and the poor and war veterans and a basic standard of living for all, a party which talked about reining in the excesses of exploitative (read: Jewish) capitalism, a party which appealed to the nostalgia of "the good old days" before 1914, a party which would stave off a Bolshevik Revolution (the threat of which was very real and which was, after widely disseminated reports of Trotsky's Red Terror in the early 1920s, widely reviled), a party which would throw off the shackles of Versailles and put Germany back in the top tier of nations which Germany's economy and kultur deserved, and, most of all, a party which promised an end to the political deadlock of the Weimar Republic--which was thoroughly discredited in the eyes of practically all Germans.

But what's astonishing is just how vague Hitler and the NSDAP were about all this. Like any politician, they spoke in platitudes and phrases which were open ended in their interpretation. When Hitler spoke of smashing Jewish finance, moderates heard him saying that international bankers were strangling Germany economically after WWI and needed to be reined in with reasonable regulation; the hardcore anti-Semites heard Hitler talking about expropriating Jewish banks outright.

Far from voting for an party which explicitly promised another world war and death camps filled with Jews, Germans thought they were voting to "Make Germany Great Again" by returning to a kind of Kaiserreich where a strong leader, aided by a loyal, dispassionate, efficient civil service carrying out the Leader's every order without being tangled up in messy parliamentary politics, would make ordinary Germans richer and esteemed in the eyes of the world. And more than some voted for the NSDAP to "keep those Jews in their place."

That's not my opinion, but rather the opinion of eminent historian Richard J. Evans.

u/mnemosyne-0002 · 3 pointsr/KotakuInAction

Archives for the links in comments:

u/Ice-Tiger · 3 pointsr/DebateReligion

The burden of proof is on you to prove he was a Christian. What churches revere Saint Hitler?

u/PM_me_Gonewild_pics · 3 pointsr/history

This has such a long and many faceted answer. Be aware this is just my opinion, if you want an in depth look at how it happened The Rise and Fall of the Third Reich is well written and does not read like a textbook, I recommend it.

The heart of it lies in the years following The Great War, WWI, or what your local history chooses to calls the European war from 1914-1918. At the end of that war The Treaty of Versailles drove the German economy into the dumpster. The resulting Germanic generation that grew up in the 20's and 30's were barely getting by. They had little to look forward to or be proud of. Their country was broken up, they were basically allowed no heavy industry, and they were paying billions of Reichsmark in reparations that left them with no working capital and very broken economy. This goes right along with the world experiencing the [Great Depression] ( No money, no jobs, no hope. This makes for a very unhappy people willing to do almost anything to be proud again.

Along comes a man wanting to "Make Germany Great Again". This man is a great orator, he speaks to the pride of the German peoples. He terrorizes the established political setup and through force of will and quite a bit of jack-boot thuggery finds himself in charge. He tells the rest of the world that he is going to industrialize his nation and in the process make a small army just for their own protection. "Sorry about your treaty but, we're going to ignore it." He then found a scapegoat that they can demonize and blame for their problems.

We now have political machine that knows how to use violence to get into power and keep it. We have a government that has successfully told the rest of the world to go away and let Germany ignore the treaties. You have a scapegoat to blame any remaining problems on. You have a large enough portion of your populace either complacent enough or afraid enough to allow it all to happen. Now they ramp up the industrialization and build a real army.

A large percentage of the German population have spent their lives beat-down, poor, and barely getting by with no hope for the future. But now there is hope! The economy is working again, the German people are strong and proud. They are taking back lands that are traditionally belonging to Germanic peoples with their new army. They are removing their scapegoats from their towns and villages. Pretty quickly this leads to war.

By 1944 Germans know there are massive problems. They can't write it in the papers but, they do whisper it. They are losing the war and they remember what comes of losing wars.

I really feel the slaughter at Oradour-sur-Glane is frustration and fear of what will happen when Germany looses again. The soldiers fear a return to the Germany of the 20's and 30's. They don't want another gutted economy, no luxury items, barely enough to eat, no work, no hope, and no pride. That type of fear is primal. There's a deep seated need for violence and domination of your adversaries in the human brain that goes back to our earliest survival. To survive you must crush your competition and drive them out if not for yourself, for the next generation. I'm not saying that is the only reason but I do believe this animal drive is a significant contributing factor that was satiated through this violence. But, like a lot of violence it only made things worse.

tl;dr Fear is a powerful thing.

u/blackstar9000 · 3 pointsr/atheism

[Here are some excerpts][1] from Hitler's Table Talk, which is probably what he has in mind.


u/HistoryNerd84 · 3 pointsr/history

Was going to recommend Keegan as well, so at least that's two random internet strangers who agree this would be a good starting point!

There is also Shirer's Rise and Fall of the Third Reich. It may be a bit massive, but it's a damn good read.

u/dodgerh8ter · 3 pointsr/WWII

I'd recommend The Second World War and World War Two Day by Day.

My first WW2 book was Rise and Fall of the Third Reich but it just covers Germany. Good book though add it to your list.

u/L1QU1DF1R3 · 3 pointsr/gifextra

Pathetic human being? Sure. Nazi? Sounds like you need to brush up on your history a bit. Rather than bash you and downvote you, I invite you take the opportunity to actually learn what a nazi is:

u/roygbiv8 · 3 pointsr/CFB

Hell of a book and apparently non fiction counts as literature so +1.

u/ItsNotTheButterZone · 3 pointsr/HongKong


An "assault weapons" (doublespeak for: what the Warsaw Ghetto residents had the right to use) "ban" only of the production & sale of certain guns & parts, nowhere close to the proposed repeating of history of banning possession of all means of effective defense by Holocaust (and other lesser & greater genocides throughout history) victims as they were forced into hell on earth, mass graves.

Keep on Holocaust-denying.

u/Jeremadz · 2 pointsr/history

My favorite book is Frozen Hell. It's a book on the Finnish-Russian war, how the allies were diplomatically barred from participation, and how the Finns waged a successful war inspite of insurmountable odds.

Edit - I guess I should have read the post more carefully. I don't know about a comprehensive history book. I personally like to delve into smaller portions in detail.

u/Icc0ld · 2 pointsr/GunsAreCool

All gun owners in Germany were Nazis? What does that say about gun owners today? Gun owners are Nazis? Wow. Keep digging that hole.


Did you even read my link? It was a take down of the author and his "research" in this book.

Not only that, an Amazon store link isn't really a source of info.

u/Stillill1187 · 2 pointsr/EnoughTrumpSpam

Yeah... scares the shit out of me.

Read like something from this book.

u/Chocolate_Cookie · 2 pointsr/ShitWehraboosSay

You might appreciate reading Ordinary Men: Reserve Police Battalion 101 and the Final Solution in Poland by Christopher Browning.

One of the issues the Nazis faced trying to efficiently murder several million people was one of manpower. To help with this they utilized Order Police battalions across Poland as shooters and guards for mass executions and later to hunt, collect, and deliver Jews to the Operation Reinhard death camps. This book is a study of one of these battalions that delves into the difficult area of motivation.

One thing that is made very plain is that some members of the Order Police flatly refused to participate in the mass shootings, and the worst that happened to them, from their perspective, was they were shunned socially, called "unmanly," and didn't get promotions.

u/ilivehalo · 2 pointsr/libertarianmeme

lol that's so not true. Here's an entire book on Nazi gun control. It was written by Stephen Halbrook, a lawyer and Research Fellow with the Independent Institute who has argued and won three constitutional law cases before the U.S. Supreme Court.

u/vokegaf · 2 pointsr/europe

Excerpts from A Frozen Hell: The Russo-Finnish Winter War of 1939-1940 on foreign support:

> Finland's early victories fired the imagination of the outside world. The so-called "Phony War" on the western front was beginning to bore people. The first month of the Winter War, however, raised the spirits of all those who were opposed to tyranny, especially since so few shots had yet been fired in tyranny's general direction. As historian Max Jakobsen elloquently put it: "So many small nations had been bullied into humiliating surrender, the dictators had won so many cheap victories, that idealism had been left starving...The Maginot Line might have reflected a feeling of security for those living behind it, but it could not inspire them as did the image of a Finnish soldier hurling a bottle at a tank."
> Everybody wanted to get involved, now that it looked like Finland might have a fighting chance. Unfortunately there was a rather extensive global conflict going on, and that made it hard for well-intentioned volunteers to reach Finland. Nevertheless, spontaneous gestures of help were made from every direction. Eight thousand Swedes volunteered, and they at least were both close and acclimated. No other foreign volunteers saw as much action as the Swedes. Eight hundred Norwegians and Danes volunteered. A battalion embarked from Hungary. Italian pilots flew north at the controls of Fiat bombers. Three hundred and fifty Finnish-American volunteers sailed from New York on the Gripsholm. Among the stranger volunteers on record were a Jamaican Negro and a handful of Japanese.
> From London, the incurably romantic Kermit Roosevelt, son of the Rough Rider president, announced the formation of an "international brigade" optimistically entitled the "Finnish Legion." His recruiting bulletins were worded to imply that anyone who had ever donned a pair of skis was qualified to join, without further training or conditioning. Roosevelt rounded up a total of 230 men for his "Legion" and managed to get them to Finland by the end of March, too late to fight but not too late for them to become a major nuisance. The Finns who processed these warriors found them to be a motley crew indeed: 30 percent were declared unfit for active duty, due to age, outstanding criminal records, or gross physical infirmities. Several had only one eye, and one over-the-hill idealist showed up sporting a wooden leg, just the thing for ski combat.
> Their fates were as diverse as their personal stories: sixty of them tried tried to return to England via Norway but managed to land in Oslo, in April, at the same time the German Army did. Some were detained as prisoners, others managed tos curry back across the border to Sweden. About 100 of them just settled in Finland, doing whatever came to hand: farming, logging, teaching English. One man ended up as the resident pro at the Helsinki golf club. Another, a journalist named Evans, obtained a post at the British Embassy and eventually became Harold Macmillan's press secretary. The rest simply vanished from the historical record, blending in with their surroundings either in Finland or Sweden. It is even possible that a few of them eventually realized their desire to fight the Russians by serving in the Finnish Army during the Continuation War of 1941-44.
> The Finnish public was certainly flattered by all this attention, and the rumor mills worked overtime, cranking out increasingly fabulous yarns about imminent and massive foreign intervention. To the average Finnish civilian, it must have looked as though the entire Western world was flexing its muscles to help "brave little Finland."
> The muscle flexing, of course, was mostlly rhetorical. The sad truth was that few Western countries, no matter how sympathetic to Finland, were in any position to help out, due to overriding concerns of foreign policy. Nowhere was this more true than in neighboring Sweden, where the gulf between cold-blooded political reality and public emotion assumed the dimensions of national schizophrenia. Popular sentiment was accurately reflected in the recruiting posters of the Swedish volunteer movement:
> >
> >
> > join the swedish volunteers!!
> Apart from the extreme step of actually volunteering, hundreds of "Help Finland" projects were underway by mid-December; everyone wanted to help. Everyone, that is, except the Swedish government, who found the Finnish situation acutely embarrassing. Sweden's ruling politicians did not dare offer enough help to make a real difference in the odds. To do so would have compromised Sweden's neutrality at a very precarious time. Direct intervention on behalf of Finland might have meant war with Russia, or it was feared, some sort of hostile move, eventually, from the Germans. Regarding the Germans, the Swedes were being overly sensitive. It was not, after all, in Hitler's best interests to allow a Soviet republic to be established only five minutes' flying time away from the strategically priceless ore fields in northern Sweden. At the very least, effective Swedish aid would have prolonged the conflict, and that, too, would have been in Hitler's interest, since the Finnish war kept Stalin tied down in the northland and turned away from the Balkans. Hitler would not have moved a finger to stop ten Swedish divisions from marching to the aid of Finland.
> Matters were not helped by the hypocritical vacillations of Sweden's leaders. The Swedish people were passionately proud of their volunteer effort, and if a plebiscite had been taken about the matter, they would probably have voted overwhelmingly to go to war for their neighbor and former province. Large segments of the Swedish population viewed their own leaders as spineless and craven. Some public officials resigned in protest and shame. When Foreign Minister Sandler spoke in the Riksdag and labeled his government's policy "neutrality carried to the point of pure idiocy," he was rewarded with a standing ovation.
> The Germans allowed some arms to pass through the Reich, until a Swedish newspaper broke the story and Hitler initiated a policy of stony silence toward Finland, in response to frantic diplomatic pressure from his new "ally", the USSR. Oddly enough, however, some of the strongest sympathy for Finland was manifested in Fascist Italy. Huge crowds, including hundreds of Black Shirts in uniform, demonstrated emotionally in front of the Finnish Embassy in Rome, then, carrying the Finnish ambassador on their shoulders, marched to the Russian compound and vigorously stoned it. Italy dispatched substantial shipments of military equipment, including seventeen Fiat bombers and 150 volunteers, one of whom was killed in combat. Väinö Tanner even made attempts to enlist Mussolini's diplomatic influence to bring about peace negotiations with Moscow. Il Duce, however, brushed aside those appeals. Like Hitler, he too was happy to have Stalin's attention turned from the Balkans, where he had dreams of aggrandizement equal to, if less reallistic than, those of the Führer.
> In America, popular sentiment was almost totally pro-Finland. To the American people, Finland was almost a "pet" nation: a tough, brave little country that always "paid its debts on time," spawned great late-romantic music, and enthralled sports fans with the exploits of its champion athletes. In New York, Mayor La Guardia sponsored a "Help Finland" rally in Madison Square Garden. The American Red Cross sent substantial humanitarian aid. Stokowski and Toscanini conducted benefit concerts --- all Sibelius, naturally.
> Franklin Roosevelt was caught in an awkward position by the conflict. He wanted to help Finland, but he was hemmed in by strong isolationist feelings in Congress and by the restrictive neutrality laws that were still on the books from the Spanish civil war. When the first reports of mass bombings of civilians blazed across the front pages of American newspapers, FDR actually contemplated severing relations with the Soviet Union. He was bombarded with so many political arguments against doing that, however, that he finally went too far in the other direction. The American ambassador in Moscow was instructed to deliver a gutless and generalized appeal for "both sides" to refrain from bombing civilian targets, stating that the U.S. government did not approve of bombing nonmilitary targets. The upshot of this policy statement, one historian acidly observed, was that "America was on record as being against evil." Nevertheless, Roosevelt permitted high-level American diplomats to confer with their Finnish coutnerparts for the purpose of finding ways to get around the letter of the law. The outcome of these discussions was a scheme by which, under certain conditions, certain types of arms could be purchased by nations friendly to the United States, provided that the deal was made on a cash only basis, and that any items thus contracted for were shipped from America only in vessels flying the flag of the purchaser.

u/MoShootr · 2 pointsr/AskAnAmerican

That's just it. It's not a straw man.

/r/NOWTTY - "No One Wants To Take Your Guns"

That sub may be a bit wacky, but man, there's plenty of people, including politicians, who really do say shit like that. And they mean it. The Freudian slips are rapid fire.

If you would like a history lesson about why "gun registries" and other such "common sense" measures are feared, I suggest reading Gun Control in the Third Reich.

This is not some alternate history exercise, and one might argue the Holocaust would have happened no matter what. Very true, it might have. However, this book is very well researched, and it does show how and why the Nazi's used regulation that was already in place from prior administrations to further their agenda, by allowing only certain groups (namely, their own thugs) to be armed, using loopholes in those previous laws.

Remember, the powers you give the government might be inherited by a future administration ran by people you do not like, or maybe even fear, and thus you should be very careful just how much power you allow them to have.

u/James_Johnson · 2 pointsr/guns

As an aside, the Finnish biathlete shenanigans were relatively unimportant to the war as a whole. The real heavy lifting was done by Finnish soldiers who fought on the Karelian Isthmus, which was mostly just a conventional war. This isn't meant to diminish what they did*, just that they didn't go biathlon-ing around very much. The ski war stuff was up north, where the cold weather and thick forest were impeding Russian progress plenty without any Finnish intervention.

This book is a great book about the Winter War. If you want to learn more about it, without all the gung-ho Finnish nationalism that colors most sources, you should read it. It's also really entertaining.

*They did things like run up to Russian tanks and kill the crews inside by spraying Suomi submachine guns into the view ports. One officer stood in front of two advancing tanks and fired at them with a pistol. The tank crews, thinking that it had to be some kind of a trap, retreated.

u/amznlnkprvdr · 2 pointsr/booksuggestions

How about A Frozen Hell by William Trotter?

u/CumfartablyNumb · 2 pointsr/history

I don't know about pictures, but the Liberation Trilogy by Rick Atkinson is fantastic and covers US involvement thoroughly.

Also the Rise and Fall of the Third Reich by Ron Rosenbaum is downright chilling. He actually lived in Nazi Germany.

u/Sanity_in_Moderation · 2 pointsr/pics

No. They didn't. The Jews were not secretly behind the Nazis.

The very first thing to do is to stop watching conspiracy videos. It's nonsensical half truths and outright lies. And there are a metric fuck ton of videos out there trying to make Hitler look good. If you don't have time to read something actually comprehensive like

You could watch non-conspiracy bullshit videos. This one, while not perfect, is fairly comprehensive and based upon the above book.

Try asking in /r/AskHistorians for specific questions or recommendations.

u/desquibnt · 2 pointsr/AskHistorians

I'm not a scholar so I can only give a short answer: Because Germans were desperate and Hitler turned the country around rapidly.

William Shirer's Rise and Fall of the Third Reich is a pretty good source of information on this. He even devotes some time in the book to his incredulity that the Germans easily believed bold faced lies told by the state press.

u/PalRob · 2 pointsr/KotakuInAction

To be fair, some books are REALLY fucked up and I think it is reasonable to provide some warning so the reader can make informed decision. I've read Ordinary Men and many scenes from the book are still vivid in my memory more than two years later.

u/randomnewname · 2 pointsr/history

All the podcasts already mentioned are amazing, I highly recommed Hardcore History and History of Rome to start. [Western] history begins with the Greeks and the Romans, I personally find the Romans far more fascinating (and History of Rome covers it all, sorta, hooray!). A great read for the Greeks is Persian Fire by Holland (already mentioned and my favorite history author). You can continue learning about Rome by listening to 12 Byzantine Rulers by Lars Brownworth. If you learn Roman history you follow a timeline from 750 BC to 1450 AD. In Our Time is produced by the BBC and covers a ton of subjects.

Almost every old text is already posted on Librivox, and lots of lesser know works. Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire and The History of the Peloponnesian War are two very famous ones. I personally enjoy Jacob Abbott with Richard I-III being pretty good. It's all read by volunteers so some tolerance is expected.

You have months if not years of free podcasts to listen to, however I also love Audible for history. One of my favorites is The History of the English-Speaking Peoples by Winston Churchill, all four volumes are on there; it covers mostly British history, but much of Europe and all of American history (his telling of the Revolutionary and Civil wars are amazing) from before Romans to 1900 AD. You can also listen to the whole book if you liked Brownworths podcast on Eastern Rome/Byzantium.

Since you don't know where to start I'll just list some of my favorites. The Vikings influence on history is quite enthralling. The story of the fall of the Roman Republic is the best there is. Hannibal of Carthage is easily one of the most famous generals of all time, so you might as well enjoy the Battle of Cannae.

One of my favorite reads is The Rise and Fall of the Third Reich, it's like the tv show Band of Brothers...but you're Hitlers brother, and you learn how frighteningly easy it all was (and you get a great understanding of Russia). Honestly though, just listen to all of Dan Carlin's podcasts, my favorites being Bubonic Nukes and Prophets of Doom (this one takes a while to get going, but the decent into madness is fascinating). Understand that not everything is going to be accurate, so enjoy the stories but dont focus on memorizing the details, and if something interests you enough seek out some deeper material on it.

edited some more links.

u/bsasson · 2 pointsr/news

I don't agree with the basic premise and don't trust those that push it, nothing political at all. In terms of resistance to genocide (which is not what's currently discussed here), figure 10%-15% against and the same number enthusiasticly participating, with the rest following along doing what they are told (source:

u/SpottedMarmoset · 2 pointsr/boardgames

If you're interested, read Rise & Fall of the Third Reich.

Hitler was an evil political genius. He played political parties off each other to rise to power, then did the same thing on a global scale until 1942 or so. He'd wipe out members of his own side to further his rise to political power or secure it.

I'd say he's on the Mount Rushmore of diplomacy with Talleyrand. (Again - perhaps the most evil dude that ever lived, but breathtakingly good at diplomacy.)

u/username2remember · 2 pointsr/brasil

Desculpe, só deu para ver o vídeo hoje.

Mas ele começa mal, batendo nessa história do nazismo ser um movimento de esquerda. Difícil, né? Felizmente, eu acabei de ler um livro fascinante sobre o nazismo, entitulado “the rise and fall of the third Reich” (fui atrás do link da Amazon para você:, um livro contando quase que semana a semana como os nazistas tomaram o poder. O livro é de 1960. Vou resumir para você: os nazistas eram de extrema direita, como os facistas.

Aí vem falar da Economist, e começa perguntando: “mas quem é essa Economist?”. Para saber essa vale a pena ler outro livro: “the pursuit of reason”, da Ruth Dudley Edwards, que é um livro contando a história da revista, publicado no seu aniversário de 150 anos. (Infelizmente, esse livro está esgotado. A minha cópia eu comprei em um sebo). A Economist é a publicação com mais credibilidade no mundo, há 175 anos defendendo os mesmos princípios. Os Agnelli de fato compraram uma participação minoritária na revista — mas a independência do conselho editorial se mantém.

Mas o melhor jeito de defender a credibilidade da revista é ler os seus artigos e avaliá-los pelo que eles são. Nesse caso volta a pergunta principal: com o quê do artigo deles sobre o Bolsonaro você discorda?

u/OnlyRacistOnReddit · 2 pointsr/todayilearned

Actually, I'm not. Let me be very clear that I am not saying that National Socialism and Communism (especially Stalinism) are the same, they aren't. I'm saying that the methods used to implement the two and the rhetoric used was very similar. So similar that Communist academics had to make up these stupid terms like "reactionary" in order to created a division where there wasn't one.

Both the Bulshivek movement in Russia and the Nazi movement in Germany leveraged the "workers" against the aristocracy. Stalin and Hitler (while hating each other bitterly) complimented each other on occasions for doing what they though was correct. Stalin congratulated Hitler on the Night of Long Knives, Hitler praised Stalin's purification of the Communist party from Jewish influence.

Read Rise and Fall of the Third Reich if you really want to understand the methods employed to bring the Nazi's into power. If it doesn't remind you of the way the Bolsheviks came into power then you aren't paying attention.

The impetus for trying to separate the two only stems from people trying to maintain that Communism is a force for good. An argument that I disagree with, but think is not injured by acknowledging that the same rhetoric and revolutionary devices were used in both the Bolshevik and Nazi rises to power.

Edit: A book I'm reading right now does a great job of demonstrating this in a scholarly way. The most jarring thing about the book is how resistant some academics are to allow this comparison. Very much in the vein of your comment. They see the comparison as a threat (something I don't really understand), instead of looking at it as an academic work.

u/BlindPaintByNumbers · 2 pointsr/history

Check out this book. Written by a corespondent who lived in Germany at the time and who had access to all the Nuremberg evidence and many personal journals of prominent Nazis. The first third of the book takes place before Hitler assumes the Chancellorship of Germany.

TLDR; He played up to peoples hatred of the Versailles treaty, belief that they didn't lose WWI, they were betrayed, mostly by the Jews and the democratic government, and he got support from the military by promising to break the treaty and rebuild the armed forces. Then he won some key elections.

u/skepticalDragon · 2 pointsr/AskEurope

I highly recommend The Coming of the Third Reich, which covers the background in which the Nazi party came to exist and then took power. It covers 1871-1933. Incredible book.

And yeah, the parallels to current world leaders are obvious and upsetting.

The Coming of the Third Reich

u/lux_coepi · 2 pointsr/books

This, which some say is too sympathetic to Weimar excesses.

This which tells you that Nazis are bad, and it's all the Kaiser's fault.

u/FirstCircleLimbo · 2 pointsr/Denmark

Det må være bogen "They Thought They Were Free" om tyskerne i årene 1933 til 1945. Spændende læsning. Men omslaget er et kæmpe kagekors, hvilket gør at jeg er nødt til at gemme bogen af vejen, da den ellers giver for mange kommentarer fra folk, der konkluderer før de undersøger. Bogen kan ses her:

Edit: Hagekors ikke kagekors...

u/paulatreides0 · 2 pointsr/worldnews

Which is fine and dandy up until you find out that a lot of people who were actually killed were innocent of those crimes, and that it's also used to wipe out political opposition. Seriously, that's a stupid argument.

"The Soviets were cool, because they only killed people who were threatening social order." Which is fine and dandy, except it ignores the huge swaths of people who were killed for "threatening the social order" who were either completely innocent or just killed for political convenience.

There have been books written all about how people who live under totalitarian regimes who thought things were great when they actually weren't, and only noticed how shit things were right before the shit hit the fan so hard everyone in a square mile got covered in it. Hell, one book, as well as one of the most famous and best books on this very matter, is literally called They Thought They Were Free, which describes life in a wide variety of totalitarian nations from Nazi Germany, to Fascist Italy, to the Soviet Union, to North Korea.

>The Philippines is a sovereign country, this is the man they chose, he has popular support as do his policies, and that's where it end.

Sure, but that doesn't mean the man isn't doing things that are terrible and should be heavily criticized. The "they're a sovereign nation" argument only gives you that they have a right to elect a totalitarian nutbag as president, it does nothing to justify the choice thereof or excuse him from criticism.

Being popularly supported doesn't make your actions humane, them being humane makes them humane. And inhumane actions, regardless of how popularly supported, are still inhumane.

>There isn't some one-size-fits-all law, rule or political system which is applicable to or appropriate for all countries at all times. Thinking there is is a type of deranged fanaticism.

But what there are are broadly agreed upon standards of human rights and necessary laws. One of the most important among them, especially with regards to the justice system, being the right to due process and trial instead of the unilateral ability for someone to arbitrarily decide you are guilty and thus worthy of execution.

u/IdeaHamster · 2 pointsr/explainlikeimfive

There's a really excellent (and sort of scary) book about this called "They Thought They Were Free". The author went back to Germany, and interviewed "regular joe" type people that were alive during Hitler's rise to power. When asked how they let it happen, they all said that they thought Hitler had their best interests in mind and was protecting them from all kinds of threats.

A quote from Sinclair Lewis comes to mind: "When fascism comes to America, it will be wrapped in the flag and carrying a cross."

u/marketd · 2 pointsr/Futurology

> I understand the worries, but starting to compare permanent marks on your body such as implants ..... is not that fair.

Except of course it is already happening. More companies are chipping their workers like pets

>Also comparing a company wanting to identify you through your fingerprint to Nazi concentration camp is maybe taking it a bit too far don't you think?

I did not compare the two. I explained why people may violently oppose this policy change. To you it's a trivial matter, but to others it is a cause for great concern, worthy of losing their job over and fighting for in a tribunal/court room .

Is this concern reasonable? Maybe not. But your original post asked the question "Why are people obsessing over this?". And I have answered why some may be horrified by it.

Some people see this as the thin edge of the wedge. A wedge that in the past ended in concentration camps. If you still don't get it perhaps you should read "They Thought They Were Free: The Germans 1933-45 by Milton Sanford Mayer" First published in 1955

It explains how a representative democracy turned into a dictatorship. Not overnight, but piece by piece. Little by little and a warning from history to never let it happen again.

Some people take that warning seriously.

u/IQBoosterShot · 2 pointsr/worldnews

> they do it in small enough increments that nobody notices while it's happening..

In "They Thought They Were Free", Milton Mayer returned to Germany and interviewed Germans to try to determine how they had let Hitler come to power. One of them remarks:

> "What no one seemed to notice," said a colleague of mine, a philologist, "was the ever widening gap, after 1933, between the government and the people. Just think how very wide this gap was to begin with, here in Germany. And it became always wider. You know it doesn't make people close to their government to be told that this is a people's government, a true democracy, or to be enrolled in civilian defense, or even to vote. All this has little, really nothing to do with knowing one is governing.

> "What happened here was the gradual habituation of the people, little by little, to being governed by surprise; to receiving decisions deliberated in secret; to believing that the situation was so complicated that the government had to act on information which the people could not understand, or so dangerous that, even if the people could understand it, it could not be released because of national security. And their sense of identification with Hitler, their trust in him, made it easier to widen this gap and reassured those who would otherwise have worried about it.

> "This separation of government from people, this widening of the gap, took place so gradually and so insensibly, each step disguised (perhaps not even intentionally) as a temporary emergency measure or associated with true patriotic allegiance or with real social purposes. And all the crises and reforms (real reforms, too) so occupied the people that they did not see the slow motion underneath, of the whole process of government growing remoter and remoter."

u/wintertash · 2 pointsr/gaybros

The Last Battle - It's the true story of US Army and German Army forces joining together in the last days of WWII in Europe to fight off the SS who were intent on killing high-value hostages taken by Germany early in the war.

u/mistermoxy · 2 pointsr/books

Dreadnought. It's a history of the naval build-up prior to WWI. And it's sequel Castles of Steel about the naval history of WWI coincidentally.

u/EvanHarper · 2 pointsr/WarshipPorn

> The idea—to create a make-believe battle squadron that could pass itself off at sea as real—was entirely Churchill’s. On October 21, [1914] he wrote to Prince Louis, then still First Sea Lord:

>>It is necessary to construct without delay a dummy fleet; ten merchant vessels . . . mocked up to represent battleships. . . . The actual size need not correspond exactly, as it is notoriously difficult to judge the size of vessels at sea, and frequently even destroyers are mistaken for cruisers. We are bearing in mind particularly aerial and periscope observations where deception is much more easy. It is not necessary that the structures be strong enough to stand rough weather. Very little metal would be required and practically the whole work should be executed in wood and canvas. . . . Even when the enemy knows we have such a fleet . . . he will always be in doubt as to which is the real and which is the dummy fleet. . .

> [...] before the end of the month, steamships were commandeered and brought to the Harland and Wolff shipyard in Belfast. [...] Within a week, wood and canvas structures were reproducing guns, turrets, boats, tripod masts, and bridges. Because a liner rises higher out of the water than a battleship, the merchantmen were filled with thousands of tons of ballast to push the hulls lower. The shapes of bows and sterns were altered. False funnels were added and were equipped with fireplaces to burn combustible materials that would emit thick clouds of smoke. Navy anchors were made of wood or were simply painted on the bows.

> [...]

> No one was fooled. Real battleship squadrons were usually made up of generally homogeneous ships. But when the dummies came together, some were twice the size of the others. Their speeds varied greatly. Some could make 15 knots, others 10, others only 7, and, as a squadron’s speed must be that of the slowest member, 7 knots became the speed at which the dummies could steam together. A 7-knot squadron could not operate with the 20-knot Grand Fleet. “The ships,” said Jellicoe, “could not accompany the fleet to sea and it was very difficult to find a use for them in home waters.” The suggestion that they be used as bait was rejected. An encounter with the enemy would have led to massacre.

> [...] At the end of April, the dummy Queen Mary was sent to patrol off New York City as a message to the German liners interned in the harbor that, if they violated their internment and tried to break out, a British battle cruiser was waiting to gobble them up. The assault on the Dardanelles suggested another use; the dummy battle cruisers Indomitable and Tiger departed Loch Ewe on February 19. To avoid being seen, they passed through the Strait of Gibraltar at midnight, and they were forbidden to enter the harbors of Gibraltar or Malta where they could be studied close up. The dummy Invincible followed six weeks later. Churchill hoped that by sending them to the Mediterranean, where they might be seen at a distance, they might “mislead the Germans as to the margin of British strength in home waters” and tempt the enemy to come out and do battle in the North Sea. The Turks did misidentify the dummy Tiger and reported her to a German submarine. On May 30, she was hit and sunk by torpedo and four British seamen drowned. A British midshipman with the Dardanelles fleet found grim humor in the event, imagining the U-boat captain “astonished to see the surviving crew clinging to the floating wooden turrets.”

> Thereafter, the curtain came down on the theatrical. Once Churchill left the Admiralty, the dummy fleet, which had cost Britain £1 million and four lives and Germany a single torpedo, quickly disappeared.

from Massie, Castles of Steel

u/datenschwanz · 2 pointsr/news

This book was, in a word, riveting. I am not a naval history fan but I could not put it down. Covers this battle and the personalities involved in it and much more. Worth the time and money 100 times over to read it!

u/3-10 · 2 pointsr/TheGreatWar

Rules of the Game is a must read for understanding Jutland.

The Rules of the Game: Jutland and British Naval Command

Castles of Steel is a good book on the history of the war at sea.

Castles of Steel: Britain, Germany, and the Winning of the Great War at Sea

u/lordofheck · 2 pointsr/wwi

The hopelessness and the inevitability leading up to it fascinate me. I find WWI (more so than any other) to be a pointless, depressing affair; it is like watching a train wreck in slow motion, with a 2 mile lead up. If you are interested in the causes, Robert Massie's book Dreadnought is a phenomenal read, and its followup Castles of Steel regarding the navel battle is equally interesting.

u/viva_la_vinyl · 2 pointsr/politics

> Hitler took about a decade from locking people up to systematically killing them. Concentration camps were never intended to kill people. I mean, of course plenty of people died, but mostly due to neglect. They didn't really care if people died, but it wasn't the goal. Death camps were part of their Final Solution which only really happened when their war in the East started and they were suddenly in a hurry.

There's a great book, Bloodlands ( I recently read that focuses on the years of 1933-1945 on Hitler and Stalin in central and eastern Europe.

Hitler initially hoped to 'rid' to Jews to Russia, after it was taken over by Nazi Germany. It was supposed to be dumping ground. When he failed in doing that, that's when the plans changed, and the concentration camps shifted to extermination camps.

u/MadPat · 2 pointsr/AskHistorians

I notice that nobody has mentoned Bloodlands: Europe Between Hitler and Stalin by Timothy Snyder.

This is the story, not only of the Holocaust, but also of the millions of people either executed or starved by either Stalin or Hitler for other reasons such as Stalin's enthusiasm for dreaming up ways of consolidating his personal power. These people were either civilians or non-combatants such as prisoners of war. The final tally including the Holocaust and Stalin's purges and the Katyn massacre and much more is about 14 million people. This took place between 1932 and 1945 in an area that included most of Poland, a lot of Belarus and the Ukraine and a big chunk of western Russia.

It is an interesting read but also a difficult one. It has taken me a long time to get through the first three hundred or so pages not because the book is badly reading but simply because the subject matter is so depressing. Still, I recommend reading it if you have an interest in the time surrounding World War II.

u/Parachute2 · 2 pointsr/Warthunder

Collectivization and forced industrialisation were part of Stalinist Communism because he viewed the Soviet Union as lacking an industrial base to support a true marxist communist state. They were stepping stones to that end. Nazism gave a head nod to socialism but Hitler in actuality just played lip service to the German people in that respect.

I'm done arguing but I'll leave you a link

You can also take a gander at this book if you're interested in a more in depth look at the state practices of both countries in Ukraine, the Balkans, and Poland.

In practice sure both countries were similarly brutal but there's a difference in why they were brutal.

Edit: Also why did you sarcastically write 'attempted' changes? Millions of people starved or were killed during those programs. The border between Ukraine and Poland was literally shut down to prevent people from fleeing. Stalin and the Comintern was wholeheartedly devoted to collectivization and making it succeed to support the next stage of industrialization. This was while they were planning to support a communist revolution in Poland. Also look at after the war how the Soviet Union exported communism to the countries it occupied. You can't ignore that and say they half-assed their attempt to make communism work.

u/Suck_It_Trebek · 2 pointsr/AskHistorians

Read Bloodlands: Europe Between Hitler and Stalin by Timothy Snyder. It's an exhaustive chronicle of the extermination programs of each respective regime, and argues quite persuasively that the development of extermination camps was a direct result of the combination of the two factors you mentioned in your post.

u/RVAConcept · 2 pointsr/rva


The crop-demands of the soviets were absurd. They literally exceeded the most optimistic yields in any nation by several magnitudes.

The USSR famines go beyond simple droughts/natural-disasters/etc. It was deliberate and the consequence of millions starving was simply an acceptable price to pay to urbanize the nation.

There are many incidents in history of short-sighted policies having unintended consequences (e.g. The Four Pests Campaign). But this isn't the case for millions of the victims under the USSR rule.

u/Montrosian · 2 pointsr/history

Check out Bloodlands by Timothy Snyder. It covers the history of Poland and Ukraine in excruciating detail about this topic.

u/AgAero · 2 pointsr/askscience

I don't want to top post since you've pretty much answered this. I'd like to add a book suggestion on the topic for OP or any others who would like to better understand what you're describing. It's cheap, and explains things quite well. I'm halfway through it myself.

u/B-80 · 2 pointsr/math

There seems to often be this sort of tragedy of the commons with the elementary courses in mathematics. Basically the issue is that the subject has too much utility. Be assured that it is very rich in mathematical aesthetic, but courses, specifically those aimed at teaching tools to people who are not in the field, tend to lose that charm. It is quite a shame that it's not taught with all the beautiful geometric interpretations that underlie the theory.

As far as texts, if you like physics, I can not recommend highly enough this book by Lanczos. On the surface it's about classical mechanics(some physics background will be needed), but at its heart it's a course on dynamical systems, Diff EQs, and variational principles. The nice thing about the physics perspective is that you're almost always working with a physically interpretable picture in mind. That is, when you are trying to describe the motion of a physical system, you can always visualize that system in your mind's eye (at least in classical mechanics).

I've also read through some of this book and found it to be very well written. It's highly regarded, and from what I read it did a very good job touching on the stuff that's normally brushed over. But it is a long read for sure.

u/scienceistoohard · 2 pointsr/math

I can't recommend much in the way of math books, but I can give you some more hints on what you should be looking for and reading about.

The specific problem that you've asked about isn't quite undergrad level material, unfortunately. Here's a document that introduces most of the relevant topics:

I can't guarantee that it will be helpful, but everything in that document is relevant to what you're looking for. You might use the table of contents or the introductory section to prime your wikipedia searches.

Basically, you specifically want to learn about optimization theory (which is what a lot of control theory is about).

Optimization, at its most basic, is not hard. An example of an optimization problem is to find the value of x that minimizes (or maximizes) some function f(x).

This is something that's covered in basic calculus. If f(x) has only one minimum/maximum (aka an extremum), then you can solve the problem easy by solving the equation df(x)/dx = 0.

Things get harder when you have constraints - maybe you want the value of x such that a<x<b, that minimizes f(x). In that case you use things like lagrange multipliers and the KKT conditions, which allow you to deal with constraints on your solutions.

I linked to wikipedia there, but the wiki pages aren't necessarily the best resources for learning this stuff. If you search for those things, though, you'll find a lot of good resources, because many people are in the same boat as you about this stuff.

Your problem is a bit trickier than basic optimization, though - in your case, you're trying to minimize a functional, which is a function that takes another function as an argument, and returns a number. The solution to that problem is a function. So, instead of using regular calculus and finding where the derivative is zero, you use variational calculus and find where the derivative is zero.

I can't recommend a specific book about this subject, but I can recommend a book that's very closely related: The Variational Principles of Mechanics. It's an excellent physics book that explains things in terms of variational calculus. The principle of least action is one way of solving physics problems, and it's very similar to the problem that you're asking about.

u/wonderb0lt · 2 pointsr/CasualConversation

I am more of a book person.

I thoroughly enjoyed The Iron Kingdom. Even though it focuses more on economics, The Age of Revolution is also a good read. And the aforementioned article on Metternich which gives you a nice story-telling device to the later coalition wars until the liberal revolution 1848

u/muj561 · 2 pointsr/HistoryPorn

I think Gitmo is at once a good and a poor good analogy. Poor in that it has housed perhaps 10-50,000 fewer people, and that it lies outside of the United States. Good in that we know of it's existence and, myself as an American, are culpable for its crimes.

Many believe the German concentration/work/death camps were outside of Germany. To some extent that is true--the major killing camps were in Poland. But many of the labor camps were in Germany and their death rates were non trivial.
A link to the list:

As I'm sure you know Hitler was not secretive about his attitude towards the Jews; it was one of the reasons he was elected. You cannot fully absolve a democracy of the crimes that its leadership commits. Krystalnacht was a nationwide phenomenon of "common Germans." Some believe it was a test to see how willing Germans would be to embrace violence towards Jews.

A book you may find of interest:

And if you are of the documentary generation (or even if you aren't), this one is excellent:

You said there is a lot of evidence that the death camps were widely unknown outside of their operation. Can you point me in the direction of that data?


u/noahpoah · 2 pointsr/suggestmeabook

Psychology or abuse, you say? Why not try Hitler's Willing Executioners? It's a disturbing non-fiction book about the Holocaust and the role of ordinary Germans in it.

u/Militaria · 2 pointsr/explainlikeimfive

To put themselves into power Hitler and the Nazis built on long-standing cultural Antisemitism and blamed the Jews for the humiliating outcome of the First World War and the economic crisis that came after it. Check out this book: Hitler's Willing Executioners for a better understanding of how average Germans were capable of atrocities.

u/happybubbles · 2 pointsr/AskHistorians

Daniel Goldhagen's book, Hitler's Willing Executioners, was in part a response to Browning's book. It has been a while since I read it, but he basically argued that the ideas of antisemitism were so deeply rooted in the German psyche that the NSDAP just had to exploit that in order to get followers. So, the question arises whether or not centuries-old antisemitism is a part of mid-twentieth century German national identity/nationalism or if it is something else as a legitimate reason for action.

Edited for grammar.

u/bobtheterminator · 2 pointsr/news

Calling Japanese internment camps the "EXACT SAME THING" is ridiculous. Anyway, of course Germans knew about the death camps.

>Robert Gellately, a historian at Oxford University, conducted a widely respected survey of the German media before and during the war, concluding that there was "substantial consent and active participation of large numbers of ordinary Germans" in aspects of the Holocaust, and documenting that the sight of columns of slave laborers were common, and that the basics of the concentration camps, if not the extermination camps, were widely known.[20] The German scholar, Peter Longerich, in a study looking at what Germans knew about the mass murders concluded that: "General information concerning the mass murder of Jews was widespread in the German population."

u/TTrns · 2 pointsr/holocaust

>I think you totally lack sense of proportions when you lament this as a "serious crime".

It is, by my standards. But it pales in comparison to the crimes of the Allies and Soviets.

>Rather, the Jews were victims of circumstances of war - circumstances they were not exactly innocent of bringing about.

Remember that some Jews were just regular people doing honest work. (A minority, I think 5-10% were manual laborers by NSDAP estimates.) Some probably remained NS supporters, even after the 1935 race laws.

The German Jews tried to get the international Jewish groups not to wage economic war on Germany. Emigration was obviously encouraged by NS policy, but it wasn't possible for everyone.

Some Jews had deep roots in Germany, and had fought in the first war... many mischlings fought for Germany against the Soviets and Allies.

(Although obviously we're not just talking about German Jews in the camps, but hopefully you get my point that we can still consider them as individuals.)

u/WarHymn · 2 pointsr/todayilearned

Hitler's Jewish Soldiers by Bryan Mark Riggs

Shows how Hitler personally reviewed up to 150K records of men who were part jewish and signed the papers (that we still have) clearing the way for them to serve in the German military. So this does not prove anything about Hitler's family but add in the DNA evidence we now have and the fact that Hitler destroyed his father's home town by turning it into a artillery target range it seems clear to me that Hitler thought he was part jewish and hated the idea quite a bit.

To me the fact that he signed all the waivers indicates he wanted to give other young men that were part jewish a path similar to his own after he fought in WWI for Germany.

u/berberine · 2 pointsr/pics

Very true. I can't imagine trying to have children read Ordinary Men. Anne Frank is a much better introduction.

u/rkk2 · 2 pointsr/history

The only thing I can recommend is Ordinary Men by Dan Browning.

u/magniatude · 2 pointsr/worldnews
u/Sitting_in_Cube · 2 pointsr/videos

Its vast majority situational. I worked in the meat industry for a while and a lot of the guys have to develop a sense of humor about it cause it fucks with you a little. Gleefully can also be a coping mechanism, very few people are truly screwed up. This is a good book about it.

u/Tootenbacher · 2 pointsr/The_Donald

I've just ordered Christopher Browning's Ordinary Men: Amazon

The Rape of Nanking: Amazon

FYI, I just provided links so you could look them up quickly - I don't have any Amazon affiliation or anything.

I should have waited to finalize my order, because now I want to buy the book you mentioned as well.

u/Deflangelic · 2 pointsr/todayilearned

I would recommend reading [Ordinary Men] ( a book that uses the narrative about a group of ordinary Germans from all walks of life committed some of the worst atrocities of the Holocaust: many Jews were not killed in chambers (the final solution) where their screams could be ignored. These "ordinary men" were forced to take jews out of villages and shoot them in cold blood, even infants.

The author uses it as a cautionary tale of the horrors of brainwashing propaganda and war; how average joes can be convinced that what they're doing is ok because it is sanctioned by a higher authority and therefor rationalize it to themselves. For more on that you can read about Milgram's psychological experiments, described in [Obedience to Authority] ( In the 1950s people were insisting that the Holocaust was a strictly German thing, that it happened once and never again. Milgram proved that most Americans would be willing to inflict pain on others to the point of death (they truly thought the actor was being killed by shocks) as long as some authority sanctioned it. He showed that even in our "good country" if an authority figure tells you to do something, you place all responsibility on him and become willing to kill. Afterwards participants would say things like "I felt bad for hurting the guy so bad, but I wanted to do my job well" and things like that.

People have always been quick to deny involvement, or claim to be just doing their small part. It's complacency towards hate that leads to these atrocities, not millions of hateful people.

u/artofwelding · 2 pointsr/history

I've not read this, but a good friend did and loved it. Ordinary Men.

u/Myhouseishaunted · 2 pointsr/gifs

Read this:
Ordinary Men

u/jamon51 · 2 pointsr/IAmA

Another parallel work is "Ordinary Men: Reserve Police Battalion 101 and the Final Solution in Poland" by Christopher R. Browning.

I think everybody should read one of these books, so they understand the consequence of "going along."

u/dredla · 2 pointsr/morbidquestions

There’s a book called Ordinary Men that delves deep into this. But yes, yes there were.

u/_boomer · 2 pointsr/politics

While that might be true...

Other people have historically believed to the same thing only to realize with great horror that they are being shot at by their own armed forces.

I would like to hear your explanation on military ethics and the Laws of War, and why that would effectively prevent what he described from happening.

While high-brow theory is certainly interesting, what he described is essentially human nature/psychology supported by history.
Ordinary Men

u/Themaster0fwar · 2 pointsr/WorldWar2

If you haven’t, I HIGHLY recommend reading a book called Ordinary Men: Reserve Police Battalion 101 and the Final Solution in Poland. It is the true story written from documents, interviews, and eye witness statements about how a simple Polish reserve police force became a death squad, murdering their own people. At the end it goes into social experiments on people conforming to authority figures such as The Milgram Experiment and The Stanford Prison Experiment.

It is extremely powerful and I actually had to put the book down and stop reading a few times because the descriptions of events were so heartbreaking. I cannot recommend this book enough.

u/salsadoom · 2 pointsr/linux_gaming

> How do you think the citizens are convinced to stand by and let evil happen?

I don't think they need convincing in the first place, honestly. I think so long as it doesn't effect them directly they'll just watch it happen, perfectly content. The only time they'll react is if they are worried they will be next. If they can benefit, or be convinced they'll benefit, they'll willingly take part.

> Because they agree to follow the "social contract"

I don't think there is such as thing. If its a contract, then it can be violated by either party. Since there are no consequences if the gov't breaks it, its really just imposed rules from the elites. Whatever the origins of the idea of the social contract, I think ultimately its meaningless. Those in power have power, those that aren't, don't, and that's all there ever was and will be.

> It was true in Nazi Germany and it's true in many countries today.

Right, we seem to agree here, basically, if someone says "Sure, its fine to kill Jews." then pretty much everyone goes, "Oh, well I guess there isn't a moral problem here at all, lets take their stuff."

> That's why it's so important not to be a sheeple, and to stand up against corruption, evil, wars, and the demonization of "the others" as scapegoats for the powerful in corrupt/evil countries, among other things.

I don't disagree, exactly, but I don't think humans are capable of this. There is an incredible amount of research that shows that people are pretty crappy. The Milgram Experiment is a good example of what we have to work with here. Even if people resist initially (The book "Ordinary Men" goes into detail about this, I admit I have not read it, for it would be a very depressing read I'm not convinced I want to know the details of.) they eventually conform to whatever they are told too, no matter how terrible it is.

From the link, "Very quickly three groups emerged within the battalion: a core of eager killers, a plurality who carried out their duties reliably but without initiative, and a small minority who evaded participation in the acts of killing without diminishing the murderous efficiency of the battalion whatsoever." Emphasis mine. Everyone wants to think that they'd be in that small (and ultimately pointless, sadly) minority, but the truth is we'd never know unless actually faced with the situation. (Joseph Conrad's "Heart of Darkness" is another good book with a rather depressing message, although a fictional story I think its unfortunately bang-on).

Given all this (some of which is well researched, some of it is just my opinion), I find talk of standing up to corruption and evil, etc, to be well intentioned, but ultimately hopeless. I think humans are essentially self-serving and evil, and that fear of consequences is usually the only thing preventing them from running wild.

> Sorry to slap your lightheartedness with some realism, lol. :D

Nah, we are just flappin the gums after all :) But seriously, I find humanity to be terrifying and extremely depressing.

u/NathanFilmore · 2 pointsr/KotakuInAction

>To be fair, a lot of Nazi soldiers were just following orders out of fear.

Okay, I need to see anything you have to support that. I have never read anything about Nazi Germany that suggests that. Not in "The Rise and Fall of the Third Reich" or anywhere else.

I did read a comprehensive analysis of non-Nazis in Poland in "Ordinary Men: Reserve Police Battalion 101 and the Final Solution in Poland". The conclusion the authors made were that nearly all of these people were not doing out of fear, but because it was their task/job/duty/pick your definition. Like a Bell Curve, there were fervent believers, and those who resisted but fear was a small portion of the motivation of them.

This analysis has its critics, but they don't state anything like what you've stated. So if you have anything that has looked at primary documents (And cites them) and comes to the conclusion you've stated I'd love to read it. Because it does not mesh with anything I've seen or read before, either as an analysis/historical accounting or the criticisms of those works.

u/blackirishlad · 2 pointsr/TumblrInAction

I would suggest Ordinary Men for much more information about this very subject.

u/litttleowl · 2 pointsr/CasualConversation

That does! Thank you:) I think it is too! I know most people realy only focus on the Nazi part of it all, but there’s so much to German history! (Like the Barbaric Tribes).

World Wars are super interesting! Have tou ever read All Quiet on the Western Front by Erich Maria Remarque? There’s “sequel” to that book called The Road Back. It looks at what happens to a (German) soldier after World War I ended. That’s supposed to be an accurate representation of soldier’s sentiments at the time. Storm of Steel by Ernst Junger is a (German) soldier’s experience during WWI. Holocaust by Bullets, Ordinary Men, Sleepwalkers, Europe’s Last Summer, and A Woman In Berlin are some pretty incredible books about these wars. Don’t know of you’ve heard of them or have read them, but thought I’d made the suggestion! Movie wise I’d say Generation War if you haven’t see it yet:) The Darkest Hour movie was great if you haven’t seen that! I’m planning to watch Babylon Berlin soon. Don’t know if you were looking for suggestions but I thought I’d make some!

u/austincook63 · 2 pointsr/booksuggestions

Has he read Stalingrad: The Fateful Siege: 1942-1943 by Antony Beevor? It's an amazing book, also very detailed (560 pages).

u/Workshop_Gremlin · 2 pointsr/wargame

Some of my reccommendations


Anthony Beevor's books on Stalingrad and The Fall of Berlin


Bernard Fall's Hell in a Very Small Place about the Siege of Dien Bien Phu


Osprey's book on Infantry Anti Tank Tactics. I thoroughly enjoyed this and gave me some insight into tactis that I can try out in the Combat Mission games.


u/Gustomaximus · 2 pointsr/books

Some great history books:

  1. A Short History of Nearly Everything

  2. Stalingrad

  3. The Interrogators

  4. On Roads

    The first and last are not military history but are quite a good and different reads for someone interested in history and facts.
u/amateurcreampie · 2 pointsr/HistoryPorn
u/RangersCrusader · 2 pointsr/RedLetterMedia

Well, Sir Richard Evans IS an esteemed historian specializing in Nazi Germany.

u/dtiftw · 2 pointsr/ConspiracyII

> Can you show me where it says socialists can't be authoritarian, violent, racist, etc?

I never made that argument. So that's a strawman and I don't see how it adds to the discussion.

>It seems the argument is, "None of these people were real socialists because they were racists and/or nationalists."

Again, I don't know who is making that argument. Because that's not what has ever been said.

>And yet for some reason, when it comes to the Germans, it's always, "Well, they weren't really socialists because they were racists and white supremacists..." or whatever.

No, it's that they weren't really socialists because they weren't really socialists.

>But it seems those who disagree simply find it sufficient enough to cut and paste links to Huffington Post, Reader Digest-level academics

Now you stoop to throwing attacks at experts because their credentials don't suit you?

Ian Kershaw is a Huffington Post level academic?

William Shirer, who actually saw the Nazi party's rise?

How about Richard Evans, who was knighted for his scholarship?

>Despite the change of name, however, it would be wrong to see Nazism as a form of, or an outgrowth from, socialism. True, as some have pointed out, its rhetoric was frequently egalitarian, it stressed the need to put common needs above the needs of the individual, and it often declared itself opposed to big business and international finance capital. Famously, too, anti-Semitism was once declared to be “the socialism of fools.” But from the very beginning, Hitler declared himself implacably opposed to Social Democracy and, initially to a much smaller extent, Communism: after all, the “November traitors” who had signed the Armistice and later the Treaty of Versailles were not Communists at all, but the Social Democrats.

I'll take the work of actual experts who have studied this far more than me or you.

u/redrosebeetle · 1 pointr/AskHistorians

In Christopher Browning's [Ordinary Men: Reserve Police Battalion 101 and the Final Solution in Poland] ( he depicts the response of Police Battalion 101 to participating in the genocide of European Jews using testimony from their post-war trials. Nearly every member, including the Battalion commander, showed signs of regret or PTSD, according to Browning.

u/ProdigalSkinFlutist · 1 pointr/history

Ordinary Men, Browning

German first hand perspective on execution.

u/Derazchenflegs · 1 pointr/news

Why assume anything? Why not look at reality, case by case?

You skipped over the “under the right circumstances” part. Of course one doesn’t just wake up a murderer one day... but you’re fooling yourself, if you believe there’s no set of circumstances that will drive people towards violence, even extreme acts. The people described in this book are probably a clear example, but I think we’d easily find more recent, less Godwin-ish examples.

Note that I’m not trying to justify the behavior, merely explain it, look at what causes it. Should go without saying, still probably worth pointing out.

u/DarthFluttershy_ · 1 pointr/GoldandBlack

Cops are "ordinary" people. This is a pity because ordinary people make terrible cops. Ordinary people succumb to peer pressure, corrupt culture, and self-interest if not kept in check. But to be fair, there are precious few truly good people on the planet. Worse, decent people don't want good people around when they do bad things, for precisely that reason. Good people who become cops therefore don't stick around long. This is why expecting the police to be angels is insane, and the police propaganda that pervades our society is extremely harmful.

In the most extreme case study on such an issue, 2.4% of police sent to Poland by the nazis refused to shoot Jews (see link or this article). As far as I can tell, there was no special selection process to ensure high levels of compliance. 20% got sick during the shooting process. The rest were easily able to acclimate to being monsters. These results are roughly equivalent to Milgram's famous shock experiment, though with much higher and direct stakes.

In sum, there's no way to make police good, only ways to make them accountable. Thus the problem starts at the top, which is failing.

u/Natemick · 1 pointr/history

This books is excellent if you're interested in reading more on the topic. Some of it is absolutely stomach churning and unbelievably disturbing to give a fair warning, but an excellent account of the extent of the atrocities and the toll it took on both the victims and the people perpetrating them.

u/Catnip123 · 1 pointr/europe

On a related note, I read (I think it was in Christopher Browning's "Ordinary Men" ) how the Nazi soldiers reacted when first encountering those Jewish communities during their invasion of Poland.
Like, those Polish Jews actually looked exactly like those caricatures which the propaganda had fed them for years, while German Jews mostly looked and dressed like regular Germans.
Many soldiers were flabbergasted that those people actually existed- and believed that this means that probably everything else the propaganda had told them about the Jews had to be true just as well.
It was then that their leadership was seriously developing plans that lead to the genocide a.k.a. "Endlösung"

u/atero · 1 pointr/gifs

It's been well established:

Following orders is not an excuse for committing war crimes. There are multiple documented instances of Germans refusing to take part in executions and saying they couldn't stomach it, and not being severely punished.

This is a good source for the mentality of German war criminals here:

u/TheCommonCow · 1 pointr/

I doubt that he actually joined him, as several people have pointed out most historians think this too, but were many instances of German police (generally it was the 'police' and not the army that carried out these killings). A good read on the subject is Ordinary Men by Christopher Browning.

u/NeoM5 · 1 pointr/worldnews

It's not about standing up to the Gestapo. It's about the fact that the Nazis were actually quite willing to transfer guards out of the camps. I wouldn't let this one example change an otherwise accepted fact. SS participating in the einsatzgruppen were allowed to leave the force. This book widely documents the cognitive dissonance experienced by members of the SS and how their revisionist memory (I tried to leave, I didn't want to kill) is false. If soldiers did not want to partake, they were mostly dissuaded from putting in serious efforts to leave because they learned to adapt to the few willing killers around them.

u/HudsonsirhesHicks · 1 pointr/AntifascistsofReddit
u/Cletusanthes · 1 pointr/ShitWehraboosSay

There's a really good book examining this concept in detail:

u/J11Wars · 1 pointr/Battlefield

It’s a pretty broad statement but I’d be happy to share my reasoning.

The last one is pretty important because it’s an example of the exception to the rule, a German who was disgusted by what his countrymen allowed.

You also have to remember that complicity isn’t all equal. I’m not saying all germans were killers or even necessarily active in their antisemitism. The holocaust led to the coining of the phrase “the banality of evil.”

I could tell you that the fact that Hitler was elected into power or that millions joined his party was enough. I could tell you that the fact that so few fought back within Germany is evidence. But really all that it took was for the majority to simply allow and accept if not condone the mass atrocities.

I’ll leave you with this book:

This is perhaps the most damning evidence we have that the average German knew enough to know what was happening, and that it was overwhelmingly accepted by them.

There’s also this:

I believe that his thesis that antisemitism was uniquely German is flawed but his arguments and evidence for an existence of virulent antisemitism embedded in the German national identity is pretty clear.

Edit: this article is also pretty interesting.

u/fluffybunnydeath · 1 pointr/wow

Wow. What a horribly unnuanced opinion. I'd recommend some reading on the topic. Perhaps the best book is Christopher Browning's "Ordinary Men". If reading is too difficult for such a narrow minded person, then maybe watch Battlestar Galactica, it deals with similar situations in a much better way than "kill them all" (in fact, the show acknowledges that such a method of dealing with issues causes those issues to become reoccurring themes).

u/its · 1 pointr/maninthehighcastle

Have you read “Ordinary Men” ? It describes very well the banality of evil?

u/Rhabarberbarbara · 1 pointr/europe

Browning's Ordinary Men. We read that in school.

> For example some german policemen in Hamburg were sure jews need tools and other things with them as they were supposed to bulid houses for themselves there.

They were of course supposed to round them up and shoot them.

u/theanswar · 1 pointr/Columbus

Nice to see you get it. The airline fees and bag limitations are truly towards your comment on choice, and the private entity has the right to impose those, or give you the choice to shop elsewhere. It isn't violating your rights in imposing those fees or limitations on you (this is for others reading this thread, not you). With the assumption of a threat simply for booking an air flight to go visit granny, we're really losing our rights, and it's not something we should go through.

As for the doing your job, I just read a book on the 101 Police Police Battalion and the choices they made/had to do their job. Sad when people alter their essence to do a job.

u/Autorotator · 1 pointr/StreetFights

Too true, but 'subhuman' is a great insult for animalistic behavior.

I am a huge proponent of people reading Ordinary Men when people start to think there is no darkness inside them.

What makes us human is not answering that primal call over stupid shit. What makes us animal is that we all have it in us.

u/Enghave · 1 pointr/JordanPeterson

>Not ordinary men.

Traumatised by war, sure, unlike most modern men in the West today, but nearly all men are ordinary in the sense of this book Ordinary Men.

u/elkoubi · 1 pointr/worldnews

Decisions about punishment aside, the point isn't that since they are human we must treat them humanely in their punishment, but rather that we must recognize that we all have this sort capacity.

u/ifurmothronlyknw · 1 pointr/suggestmeabook

Christopher R. Browning. This book basically explains how any one of us, if had lived through nazi Germany, we also would have committed this horrible crimes. I took a course on holocaust in college, this book was basically the thesis of the class. It really affected me.

u/Errant_Tree · 1 pointr/StarWars

Well I have to comment on this opinion of yours as well.

The average soldier did not enjoy the killings they were ordered to do, and many were able to opt out of the killings. I'd read Ordinary Men. Very enlightening on the psychological effects on the soldiers.

u/headless_bourgeoisie · 1 pointr/CringeAnarchy

> What sucks is that these poor bastards are just doing their jobs, and they likely feel awful about it.

uh hu

u/AmbitiousPainter · 1 pointr/Firearms

> But no. Soldiers are people -and can be good or bad, but I've seen so much good, and looked for and found so little bad.

>Ordinary Men is the true story of Reserve Police Battalion 101 of the German Order Police, which was responsible for mass shootings as well as roundups of Jewish people for deportation to Nazi death camps in Poland in 1942.

You obviously didnt watch the video.

"you dont want to think about what you'll have to do, shoot an american on these streets".

It has little to do with your appeal to emotion arguments, and more to do with what actually occurs in groups or tribes, especially when a strict hierarchy and training to obey orders comes into the equation.

u/guiraus · 1 pointr/JordanPeterson
u/j3utton · 1 pointr/todayilearned
u/SinCao13 · 1 pointr/TooAfraidToAsk

The book Ordinary Men by Christopher R. Browning might provide you with some answers, blew my mind.

Breif Description:
While this book discusses a specific Reserve Unit during WWII, the general argument Browning makes is that most people succumb to the pressures of a group setting and commit actions they would never do of their own volition.

u/CalifornianBall · 1 pointr/beholdthemasterrace

As you should, you think you would have been part of the solution and not the problem if you were a member of Nazi Germany? No, you’d contribute to the problem.

Edit: This is a great book that explains this in depth.

u/reseatshisglasses · 1 pointr/suggestmeabook

The Milgram Experiment by Prof. Stanley Milgram. Read this if you'd like to learn the psychological reasons that allow and convince ordinary people to do inhumane actions against one another. The professor sought to find out how places like Auschwitz could staff such large camps without the workers and guards rebeling. Easy to read and well explained. This would help you understand how and why the next two books accounts were possible.

Ordinary Men: Reserve Police Battalion 101 and the Final Solution in Poland by Christopher Browning. The Milgram Experiment explains how this process can happen by demonstrating it in a lab setting but Ordinary Men shows you a close up view of a real life event of regular men becoming monsters.

Unit 731 Testimony: Japan’s Wartime Human Experimentation Program by Hal Gold. Some of the most disturbing human experimentation I've ever heard of.

u/van_12 · 1 pointr/ww2

A couple that I've read from Antony Beevor:

Stalingrad, and its follow up book The Fall of Berlin 1945. Beevor has also written books on the Ardennes, D-Day, and an all encompassing book on WWII. I have yet to read those but can attest that his two Eastern Front focused books are fantastic

I would also highly recommend The 900 Days: The Siege of Leningrad by Harrison Salisbury. Absolutely haunting stuff.

u/Ysfire · 1 pointr/AskHistorians

Antony Beevor's "Stalingrad" is considered by many to be the definitive book on the battle. Not only discussing the battle itself, but also the buildup to the battle and its effect on the German campaign.

u/Naughtysocks · 1 pointr/history

The Fall of Berlin by Antony Beevor is an amazing book.

Also Stalingrad The Fateful Seige by Beevor is great too.

u/toomuchcream · 1 pointr/history

A World Undone about WWI.
I've never read it myself, but many people have recommended it to me.

Also you can never go wrong with something about Stalingrad

u/sumdumusername · 1 pointr/wikipedia

I very much prefer Antony Beevor's Stalingrad: The Fateful Siege: 1942-1943

His book draws on some sources that weren't available to Westerners when Evans wrote Siege, and he's very, very readable.

u/barkevious · 1 pointr/books

Antony Beevor's Stalingrad and The Fall of Berlin 1945 were superb narrative histories of World War Two in the East. On the American end, the first two volumes of Rick Atkinson's Liberation Trilogy - An Army at Dawn and The Day of Battle are great. I think somebody else mentioned The Guns of August by Barbara Tuchman. Just the first paragraph of that book is worth the price of the paperback.

If you're not into the whole military thing, The Worst Hard Time by Tim Egan covers the dustbowl era in the southern plains. Reads like an epic novel.

All of these suggestions prioritize craft of writing over intellectual rigor. I studied history, so I have a keen appreciation for the value (and the limits) of academic history. These books are not that sort of history, though I don't think any of them get any facts egregiously wrong. It's just that they're remarkable for being well-written - which should appeal to a fiction enthusiast - not for being pathbreaking academic treatments of their subject matter.

u/MONDARIZ · 1 pointr/history

The best current writer on World War II is without doubt Anthony Beevor. A great historian and a riveting writer.

Anthony Beevor: Stalingrad: The Fateful Siege: 1942-1943

Anthony Beevor: The Fall of Berlin 1945

Anthony Beevor: D-Day: The Battle for Normandy

u/show_me_the_math · 1 pointr/HistoryPorn

I would like to read that thread. In Stalingrad by Beevor he says that the NKVD would execute them, which is why many of them fought alongside the sixth army.

u/MooseMalloy · 1 pointr/books
u/Rc72 · 1 pointr/europe

> If you truly believe a victory of Wilders will lead to genocide, leave the country, because then we are already lost.

I don't "believe" anything, I merely note what he actually said. Which is the very opposite of "sensationalist nonsense". EDIT: I already left the country some time ago, not least because of the noxious political climate around Wilders. My win, your loss.

> you insist that Wilders is genocidal based on your own emotions about his speech

Again: I don't insist on anything. I can't see into Wilders' dark soul: for all I know he was just tickling the lizard brain of his audience. But I can read exactly what he said.

> Because otherwise Moroccans would mistake your for... a woman, and you would come into contact with their cultural view on women. Which isn't all too nice.

Oh, you know all Moroccans, so you feel qualified to assert that they are all sexist? I'm familiar enough with North African sexism, thank you very much, but I wouldn't generalise my experience with specific people to a whole country on that account, just as I wouldn't generalise my experience with individual racists in the Netherlands to all Dutch people.

You, on the other hand, seem comfortable with sweeping generalisations.

> And this is basically just one big insult, not an argument.

Believe me, if I insulted you, which I'm certainly feeling like doing, you'd know. You're just avoiding a reply.

> If you call people literally "evil" for voting a certain party, that's pretty much synonymous to calling them a "nazi", because no-one who actually uses the word means to invoke political ideology.

Quite frankly, you don't make any fucking sense. I believe that Maoism and Stalinism are evil: does that make them "synonymous" with Nazism?

I believe that PVVers are evil (but not Nazis, never mind "Nazi's"), because I've had a look at that party's platform and I find it is evil. If I'm not allowed to call a party program "evil" because that is "synonymous to calling it Nazi", then we are done discussing politics, thank you very much.

> No, the point is that you can't discuss someone's political views without, in effect, dehumanizing them

Evil, idiocy and misdirection are essentially human. I can hardly "dehumanise" anyone by pointing those out where they occur.

> if you're going to be a grammar Nazi


> you should know that text between quotation marks is being quoted

Well, where did you quote "Nazi's" from, then?

> You have never heard of the Sack of Berlin?

I've even read Beevor's book, just as I read "The Fire. I even personally know several women who had to flee the advancing Red Army. Again, I don't see your fucking point.

u/SchurkjeBoefje · 1 pointr/worldpolitics

Evans is one of the most eminent living historians on the subject of Nazi Germany, having dedicated his entire career to researching it.

He and many others, the majority of actual historians, agree that the circumstances and methods in which the Nazis rose to power had little to do with actual democracy. Just because a bunch of people voted doesn't mean it was actually democratic, or adhering to the democratic structure of Germany at the time.

You are the one who is challenging that.

"The slide away from from parliamentary democracy into an authoritarian state ruling without the full and equal participation of the parties or the legislatures"

"Political power had seeped away from the legitimate organs of the constitution onto the streets at one end, and into the small cabal of politicians surrounding President Hindenburg at the other, leaving the vaccuum in the vast area between, where normal democratic politics take place. "

What part of that is 'democratic'? Without the full and equal participation of the parties or the legislatures. How can we call that 'democratic'?

The circumstances regarding the Nazi rise to power are complex, but people like to go "hurr, democratically elected" because that's an easy answer, when the reality is complex and doesn't yield an easy answer. You're the one here putting your fingers in your ears and going "LA LA LA DEMOCRATICALLY ELECTED LA LA LA CAN'T HEAR YOU".

Read a book, man. Start with this one

u/asaz989 · 1 pointr/news

This is very very inaccurate.

Within a year of becoming Chancellor, Hitler took legislative power from Parliament, suspended civil liberties, dissolved, suppressed, and/or banned other parties (including opposition parties like the Social Democrats and Communists as well as the Nazis' former conservative coalition partners - which were necessary because even in the elections they won, they did not receive a majority), and imposed party and state control over voluntary organizations (see the previous link). From March 1933 until the 1949 West German elections, there were no multi-party elections in Germany.

If you want more information on this period, I highly recommend Richard J. Evans' The Coming of the Third Reich for events up to the Enabling Acts and Reichstag Fire Decrees, and The Third Reich in Power from the period from that point until the outbreak of the war.

u/thedarkerside · 1 pointr/KotakuInAction

> Big business was thus already disillusioned with the Weimar Republic by the late 1920s. The influence it had enjoyed before 1914, still more during the war and the postwar era of inflation, now seemed to be drastically diminished. Moreover, its public standing, once so high, had suffered badly as a result of financial and other scandals that had surfaced during the inflation. People who lost their fortunes in dubious investments searched for someone to blame. Such scapegoating focused in 1924-5 on the figure of Julius Barmat, a Russian-Jewish entrepreneur who had collaborated with leading Social Democrats in importing food supplies immediately after the war, then invested the credits he obtained from the Prussian State Bank and the Post Office in financial speculation during the inflation. When his business collapsed towards the end of 1924, leaving 10 million Reichsmarks of debts, the far right took the opportunity to run a scurrilous press campaign accusing leading Social Democrats such as the former Chancellor Gustav Bauer of taking bribes. Financial scandals of this kind were exploited more generally by the far right to back up claims that Jewish corruption was exerting undue influence on the Weimar state and causing financial ruin to many ordinary middle-class Germans.

For the Barmat scandal, see Bernhard Fulda, ‘Press and Politics in Berlin, 1924-1930’ (Cambridge Ph.D. dissertation, 2003), 63-71, 87-117.


> On 20 February a large group of leading industrialists met at Goring’s official residence, and were joined by Hitler, who once more declared that democracy was incompatible with business interests, and Marxism had to be crushed. The forthcoming election was crucial in this struggle. If the government failed to win, it would be compelled to use force to achieve its ends, he threatened. The last thing business wanted was a civil war. The message was clear: they had to do everything in their power to ensure a victory for the coalition - a coalition in which some leading businessmen evidently still thought that Papen and the conservatives were the key players. After Hitler left the meeting, Goring reminded his listeners that the forthcoming election would be the last, not just for the next four years but probably for the next hundred. Hjalmar Schacht, the politically well-connected financier who had been the architect of the post-inflation stabilization programme in 1923-4, then announced that business would be expected to contribute three million Reichsmarks to the government’s election fund. Some of those present still insisted that a portion of the money should go to the conservative coalition partners of the Nazis. But they paid up all the same.

Turner, German Big Business, 330-32.


> The new funds made a real difference to the Nazi Party’s ability to fight the election, in contrast to the lack of resources that had so hampered it the previous November. They enabled Goebbels to mount a new kind of campaign, portraying Hitler as the man who was reconstructing Germany and destroying the Marxist menace, as everybody could see on the streets. Fresh resources, notably the radio, were brought to bear on the Nazis’ behalf, and with a fighting fund vastly bigger than before, Goebbels really could saturate the electorate this time

Paul, Aufstand, 111-13.

Or, you know, read a book.

u/NewMaxx · 1 pointr/books

"The Thirty Years War" by Peter H. Wilson.

I try to read at least one history book a month, although it's often slow going. This one is pretty dry even by those standards but the political ministrations are quite interesting. I would probably not suggest it to the casual reader. A good place to start for those interested in history is probably "The Coming of the Third Reich" by Richard J. Evans.

u/jimibulgin · 1 pointr/Showerthoughts

> they don't fight for their country, but for the person beside them.

Yeah, well, that is the basic premise of this book.

u/outtanutmeds · 1 pointr/conspiracy

>Hitler, as well as many other predominant Nazis were actually two leprechauns. The initial plan was to round up the population and send nukes at them.

In "Hitler's Table Talks", Hitler stated that he was against nuclear weapons; calling atomic weapons "Jew Physics". He thought the the use of such weapons of mass destruction was barbaric and inhumane. (go figure!) But, I'm sure that he would have used any means possible to save his ass at the end of the war, and that includes nuclear bombs.

u/censorship_notifier · 1 pointr/noncensored_bitcoin

The following comment by HPLoveshack was silently greylisted.

The original comment can be found(in censored form) at this link: Bitcoin/comments/89xoji/-/dwv73lj?context=4

The original comment's content was as follows:


> Don't worry, we'll just torture you until you produce a gun for us to confiscate.
> You should read Gun Control in the Third Reich.

u/beatkid · 1 pointr/politics

The interesting thing about the holocaust, especially in Poland, is that all the senseless killing was the culmination of centuries of racial prejudice. Non-Jewish Poles were greenlit to take life and property in the same way white Georgians were during Andrew Jackson's tenure in America. The point is, Hitler didn't wave a magical wand to make people start murdering. Nor did he send in droves of SS agents to conduct slaughter. Much of the killing occurred organically.


u/Crusader299 · 1 pointr/iamverybadass

Hitlers platform was a lie. It might surprise you that Hitler lied but it should be quite obvious that his claim of being a “Christian Party” is proven false based on his belief that Christianity is false and his hope that it will soon die. This proves completely that he was not a Christian, because you can’t be Christian if you don’t believe in the Christian Faith. It should come as no surprise then that he would lie in his 1920 platform.

The quote above was said by Hitler between 1941 and 1944, it is found in Hitler's Table Talk 1941-1944: His Private Conversations (Amazon USA) (Amazon UK) .

Here is a link to the page I found the quote on:

Here is a link to the book:

And lastly, you said that if two Christian Parties kill each other this does not prove they are not Christian. But these events usually take place on theological disagreements, especially during the medieval and Renaissance eras. Hitler killed the Confessing Church for purely Secular reasons. Thus the Nazi Party elevated Secular goals above Theological ones showing that as a Party it valued pragmatic Secular goals first. This by definition invalidates any claim of them being a Faith based party in Germany and lands them firmly in a Secular camp. The Nazi Party was not a Christian organization, and Hitler was not a Christian. I am still looking for his preferences for paganism in his table talks, I will post it here once I find it.

u/BuddhaFacepalmed · 1 pointr/Libertarian


Hitler's Table Talk. Specifically, p26.

>>"I shall no longer be there to see it, but I rejoice on behalf of the German people at the idea that one day we will see England and Germany marching together against America"

u/TheEgalitarianWMRA · 1 pointr/AskFeminists

> That's generally considered a good thing.

...You are now advocating violence based on ideological grounds when you say you do not know what those grounds are. If you do not understand how the Nazis think, you have no authority to speak on them. Read this. Or a free pdf. If you do not understand Nazis you have no base to speak on them.

>lol oh ok, i guess he wasn't that bad.

I never said that. Never would. He slaughtered the better part of my family.

>To Nazis, maybe.

To anyone who is not on board with the belief he is evil. He comes across as the peaceful easy going guy, while the people punching him come across as violent authoritarians. If you let him speak, he will look as bad as he is. If you attack him, it doesn't.

>To the rest of us it's still a fucking hilarious stroke of righteous karma.

No matter what you say violence is not a reasonable response. Period.

u/Cialis_In_Wonderland · 1 pointr/CCW

> Our issues important, but please don't equalize yourself

Would you call references to Nazi Germany "equalizing ourselves" with Holocaust victims? I feel even this most serious of injustices warrants comparison.

I'd go so far as to argue the exact opposite of your point. We should be comparing present-day America to all manner of past atrocities in order to learn from them and move towards a more just future. I'm not going to lock MLK into a little box in the history textbooks; there are relevant comparisons to be made between both of our causes. You're the only person bringing ego and pride into it.

u/Ziac45 · 1 pointr/SeattleWA

Here are two books that I would really recommend to know a bit more about what actually happened. I am done debating this issue because as I said above I am tired of being called nasty things.

In the Garden of Beasts

The Rise and Fall of the Third Reich

This one has some very outdated social views in there about gays but it is still a very good book to understand Hitler and Germany.

u/MasterFubar · 1 pointr/AdviceAnimals

> On what crazy analysis of history are you rationalizing your beliefs?

On many different sources, for instance this book

Hitler was an opportunist, the fact that he didn't attack Sweden or Switzerland are clear examples of this.

u/unruly_mattress · 1 pointr/conspiracy

Pfffft, me, a Marxist?

Start here:

I know it's not a poorly made Youtube video, and not even a badly written blog post, but hey, it might have some information worth considering, eh?

u/YoYossarian · 1 pointr/TrueReddit

Hey, remember the time when brownshirts justified their violent actions in the streets as merely a retaliation against the violent actions of communists?

Almost as if violence doesn't do anything other than provide justification for retaliatory violence. Here's a great book on the subject. I highly recommend it.

u/IamUandwhatIseeisme · 1 pointr/Libertarian

When did I do that? Please quote my comment here about socialist and national socialism with Marxism?

They did so seize it. You should read rise and fall of the 3rd Reich.

And also do research on Albert Speer.

You will learn that Fascism is very much a centralized planned economy and stole the means of production.

Motivation is only the why, not the what... and not even the true why most of the time. The actions of each are completely the same and a lot of the rhetoric is as well.

Finally, the fact that you think Pence is anything like 'Muslims' (I'm guess you mean Islamists) on any scale shows me just how distorted your word view is.

u/lewdite · 1 pointr/conspiracy

... what??? Do you understand the significance of the Reichstag fire in relation to the third Reich or are you just repeating a talking point spewed from some alt-right asshole? Your invocation seems to suggest you think this is coordinated for the benefit of... Ron Paul?

You should read this instead of watching YouTube:

u/nunboi · 1 pointr/politics

Growing up my Dad was a big fan of the book The Rise and Fall of the Third Reich. He lost his copy and ordered a new one online, but the seller was in the middle east, and shipping got complicated as he made the order days before 9/11 lol.

u/BetterTextSaul · 1 pointr/history

I recently read about this in Wiliam Shirer's "The Rise and Fall of the Third Reich"

There's a few factors that Shirer notes, but is clear that there is obviously still much dispute as to what happened. It is theorized that Hitler was worried about his generals gaining too much power, thus left it for Göring's Luftwaffe to deliver the deciding blow. However, there were many other factors that weighed into the consideration. Sending in the army would have severely limited the effectiveness of the Luftwaffe. There were concerns about the effectiveness of the Panzer divisions in the marshy soil around Dunkirk, and around the supply lines needed for the advance.

Part of me wants to give Hitler the benefit of the doubt (that feels horrible just to type) that we have the ability to use hindsight to see how horrible of a blunder this was, but the other part reads the (albeit biased) testimonies of several of the generals that knew immediately that this was a ridiculous decision. I do not think for one second that he did it as a sign of sportsmanship. I personally think he was talked into the sharing of the glory by Goring,

u/Reeeltalk · 1 pointr/infj

Ok so I just went and looked for specific pages to take pics of and realized it took about 42 pages to come to the conclusion. This is the book if you wanna check it out sometimes though.

u/InALaundryRoom · 1 pointr/toronto

you should read the rise and fall of the third reich to understand what you're talking about, it didn't work for the red shirts in the past and it only pushed people towards putting the nazi party in power. Anftia is doing the same shit now, and it has the same effect.

u/_vikram · 1 pointr/booksuggestions

I don't know if it is exactly "light reading" but The Rise and Fall of the Third Reich By William Shirer is a really fascinating look at the Nazis and World War II. It's not at all complex like some of the classics you've listed here, but it's still a really enjoyable read.

u/enslavedroosters · 1 pointr/politics

You really are ignorant. It's more about the mindset of people that would allow concentration camps to happen. The devotion to the dear leader over the country. Sure you can easily dismiss it now but once you are over the cliff it is a lot harder to climb out. The average German citizen wasn't aware of the concentration camps or many of the atrocities committed.

That's why the quote by Edmund Burke is so poignant.
> The only thing necessary for the triumph of evil is for good men to do nothing.

We the people must stay ever vigilant, if we see something we must speak up it is our duty.
What we have seen so far is not a good indication of things to come but by all means, bury yourself in the sands.

I urge you to watch or read The Rise and Fall of the Third Reich.

u/jaskamiin · 1 pointr/AskHistorians

>the Finns were fully committed to fighting.

I think one of the biggest misunderstandings of the Winter War was how brave and well organized the Finns were.

As far as why they lost - the Soviet regrouping you mentioned complemented the growing lack of equipment of all kinds that the Finnish were facing. Many began depending on looted ammunition and they became unable to launch any kind of meaningful counterattacks or the like.

Also, due to the Nordic countries not allowing (Franco-)British men/ammunition/etc to pass through their land, the Finnish quickly ran out of artillery and tanks as well.

For others reading this, this is a pretty good book about the war, in general. It goes into pretty good depth about the loss.

u/ThePwnd · 1 pointr/changemyview

It took me a while to compile my thoughts into this post, and to gather up links to online historical sources, so I know this is coming a bit late to the discussion, but I hope you'll get some value out of this:

>you having a semiautomatic rifle will not stop any government tyranny because nobody stops the United States military, and I understand that banning semiautos will not end all gun violence. I even understand that semiautos aren’t even responsible for a lot of homicides in the US outside of mass shootings.

So this is the bit that I want to focus on, because once upon a time, I posted to this subreddit about my views on guns and the 2nd amendment, and someone changed my view by making me confront the notion of a band of rebels defending against a drone strike. Then, I talked to a friend of mine about it (who happens to be a lawyer) and had my view changed back, lol. What he made me realize are 2 things, which I'll elaborate on in part:

  1. I think people have a general misconception about how the application of the 2nd amendment would actually play out against an attempted tyrannical government, and

  2. I think people also have a general misconception about what a tyrannical government actually looks like in practice.

    Imagine a scenario with me where the President dissolves both houses of Congress, declares himself god-emperor, and actually starts a second civil war in which he sicks the military on the American populace. Could the military win such a conflict? Probably, but at what cost? It might not be as easy a victory as you would expect. There are more guns in this country than there are people. Granted, only an average of about a third of the households in the country own part of those guns, but the local percentage can vary widely from state to state. In the event of a civil war, who's to say that these gun owning citizens wouldn't get organized and disperse their weapons amongst their neighbors and fellow statesmen who don't have guns? In a state like Delaware, where only about 5% of the population owns a gun(s), the people might not offer much resistance, but in a state like Alaska, where two thirds of the people own a gun(s), or in Texas, where a third of the people own a gun(s) (in Texas a third of the population also amounts to about 10 million people), what exactly is the military supposed to do to crush the rebellion in states like that? They may have the advantage in technology, but they'll quickly find themselves being overwhelmed in numbers.

    The misconception that I think most people have is that Americans will all unite and band together in a heroic attempt to dethrone the newly proclaimed god-emperor by marching on the capital and physically deposing him. At least, this is certainly the picture I had when I was a kid, but I think there are a lot of movies that reinforce that idea of a band of rebels struggling against tyranny. But the reality is that it would the U.S. military who would be forced to go on the offensive and find a way to quell the rebels, being easily over 100 million people in number, and being literally everywhere.

    And that's to say nothing at all about the very likely scenario that half the military wouldn't even go along with their orders, and would return home to fight alongside their countrymen. Then the odds are in even greater favor of the rebels. The thing is, though, that the rebels don't even have to be able to actually win such a war. They just have to be able to be such a nuisance that any wannabe god-emperors would find it too costly to go to war, because it really would be an actual war - with its own people, on its own turf. Even if the government won, the detriment to the economy and our infrastructure and our population would be so taxing it would take decades, possibly even centuries to recover.

    TL;DR - The hypothetical scenario of the President, or anyone in government becoming god-emperor, really boils down to a costs vs benefits problem, and the existence of the 2nd amendment makes the costs FAR outweigh the benefits.

    Anyway, I mentioned that the second misconception I think people have is about what a tyrannical government looks like in practice, and I say tyrannical, but I should really use the word abusive. Obviously, an all-out civil war like in the scenario I laid out above doesn't just happen overnight. It happens slowly, over time, as government power becomes too centralized in the hands of one branch, or worse yet, one person. Imagine with me another scenario down the road a few years or so. Trump is still President, and through executive order, he makes it illegal to be a Muslim. He's able to work around the constitutional right that guarantees us freedom of religion, and when the law is enforced, it won't be the military enforcing it. Naturally, it will be the police, a different, oft overlooked arm of the government. Well, the police come to shut down their first mosque and arrest the Imam and probably others as well, but thanks to the second amendment, they're met with an angry mob of citizens bearing assault rifles. Not just members of the mosque, but members of other mosques, and even non-Muslims. Too many armed citizens for the police to subdue and carry off to prison. Now what is Trump to do? Does he call in the military? Does he drone strike the mosque? There's really nothing he can do here that won't result in the civil war scenario that I laid out previously.

    This is the point of the 2nd amendment. It's not something that will likely ever have to be exercised so drastically as long as it remains a constitutional right. It's meant as a deterrent from the government ever trying to become too tyrannical.

    But hey, maybe you're still not persuaded by my scenarios. Maybe you don't think they're plausible. Maybe you just don't think an armed populace is really enough to discourage Trump from stepping on Americans' freedom of religion. Well, apparently, an armed populace was enough to deter Hitler from rounding up the Jews and putting them into concentration camps. I just uncovered this little gem literally less than a week ago, so unfortunately I haven't read it myself. I've only heard what others I follow have to say about the book, so, small disclaimer there, but it details the gun control legislation in the Third Reich that Hitler used to disarm the Jews before rounding them up into concentration camps. I understand that the same happened in the Ottoman Empire before the Armenian Genocide, in Soviet Russia before the rise of Stalin, in China before the rise of Mao, and in Cambodia before Pol Pot (This is my source: on the other governments. It mentions the years of the gun bans in each country, but I haven't yet found an independent fact checker that can verify these claims. I will edit this post when I find a more authoritative source, but I'm afraid if I wait much longer, you'll have lost interest in the thread and will have moved on, so take those last few historic claims with a grain of salt).
u/EarlyCuylersCousin · 1 pointr/GunsAreCool

Not exactly. Nazis and Nazi sympathizers did nothing to stop the holocaust after anyone not a Nazi or that was Jewish or otherwise considered by the Nazis to be undesirable (gypsies, minorities, gays, etc.) was disarmed.

u/CommentArchiverBot · 1 pointr/RemovedByThe_Donald

They barely had any gun control. Unless you failed "The Test"

.....The real sticking point is that based on traits you were born with you could auto-fail 'that test' outright. But for everyone else it was about what you'd expect in a random Great Plains state.

-/u/OneBurnerToBurnemAll, parent

u/Journeyman12 · 1 pointr/MurderedByWords

> I read this comment of yours, and others similar to it, and I have to wonder if you're not clinically insane.

Lol, what were you reading in my history to make you think that? I mostly post about the Green Bay Packers. Unless you're a Vikings or Bears fan, that's not grounds for a diagnosis.

Second of all... you win. I'm crazy. You've applied the dreaded 'clinically insane' label and I have crumbled beneath it.

Now that you've won, maybe you'll listen a little. Looping in /u/Logicalist, /u/RedExplosiveBarrel and /u/Xzow just for the hell of it.

> But it would have been worse for them if, somehow, they had firearms squirreled away?

Think about what the Nazis were doing in a context that's broader than just whether the Jews had guns or didn't. Since the Nazis took power in 1933, they had launched a campaign of dehumanizing the Jewish people by portraying them both as less than human and as enemies of the state. Hitler described Jews as schemers in the shadows who had stabbed Germany in the back during World War I and who had every intention of doing so again.

This is in a state where they were a tiny percentage of the total population. We have an actual example where a Jew picked up a firearm and fought back, and it ignited the worst pogroms of the pre-WWII Third Reich. Not to mention the Nazis passing several anti-Jewish laws that they hadn't previously done. I use the word 'accelerated' because that's what it did.

No one can blame that young man who shot the Nazi official for fighting back, and I sure won't. He and his people were being treated as subhumans by the scum of the earth. Fighting back in that situation is a normal and honorable thing to do. But when we peck over our keyboards eighty years later, maybe we can take his example to illustrate that since Jews were already being portrayed as enemies of the state and persecuted on that basis, actually behaving like enemies of the state did not improve the way the Nazis treated them.

I mean, I can't emphasize this enough - a gun is not a talisman! It is
not some magical deterrent that keeps bullies from picking on you! You want to talk about insanity?

> What made you think this was someone suggesting that it improves individual odds?

You guys on the Internet talk about this like it's some kind of abstract logic problem that we can view at the level of entire populations. Like if we assume a population of Jews, and we assume the Reich, and we add guns to the Jews, then the guns will act as a deterrent to the Reich. A + B = C. Simple, neat, and clear.

It makes me sick. This wasn't an abstract case. It wasn't as if all the Jews of the Reich could have some big town meeting and say, we should resist with guns. Nazi policy was to smash every other political party, turn every organ of the state into a Nazi appendage, and infiltrate every voluntary association with Nazis. See Richard J. Evans' The Coming of the Third Reich. He describes how everything from knitting circles to horseback-riding clubs, every kind of just ordinary thing that people might get together to do, was taken over by the Nazis. You could still have a knitting club, but it would be led by a Nazi Party official who was watching what you said. They did this with every organization in Germany.

Remember, this is the pre-Internet era. You can't go on MeetUp and say, hey, let's all break out the rifles and go shoot some Nazis. Jews in Germany (and all Germans, really) had no place to gather and share their views outside of their homes. Just talking about anything rebellious or anti-Nazi - even making a joke! - could get you accused of treason and shuttled into a farce of a judicial system which included concentration camps by the mid-1930s. In a climate where non-Jews were being told that they had a duty to the state to report anything suspicious that the Jews (or anyone else) might be up to, like too many people visiting a certain household. Want to organize over the phone? Better hope the Nazis aren't listening in. Better hope the telephone company isn't keeping track of who you call and sending it to the government.

You might argue that they could've still organized, if you're still thinking about it in the abstract sense. And they might have. I'm not saying it wasn't possible. I just want you to think about how difficult it would've been for the actual people you're talking about to mount any kind of coordinated resistance movement against a regime that took specific and dictatorial measures to prevent such a movement.

> reality doesn't support this absurd conclusion of yours

Look at the example of the Communist Party, which actually was a resistance movement in prewar Germany and which certainly had access to guns (see Evans, again). Read about how the Nazis cracked down on it, broke up its official organs, arrested thousands, and used the specter of the Communists as justification for arresting people for years afterwards. The Reichsbanner Schwarz-Rot-Gold was a trained and organized paramilitary Communist group with 250,000 members; they were smashed like the rest of the Communists, their leaders killed or sent to the camps. Those that survived were able to mount only a token resistance afterwards. They certainly didn't stop the Nazis from crushing Communism as a movement in Nazi Germany. The Jews would have fared better? Looking at you, /u/Logicalist, and at you, /u/Xzow.

We're not talking about an occupied country - we're not talking about the French underground, or the Jewish resistance in Warsaw, or the Yugoslav rebels that kept the Germans busy there. We're talking specifically about Jews in Germany in the pre-war era, in a place where the Nazi Party was in almost complete control.

> What made you think this was someone suggesting that it improves individual odds?

Because the Nazis pursued a policy of destroying or subverting all other organizations in Germany - political, religious, governmental, voluntary - that could allow people a place to formulate dangerous ideas, like armed resistance, as a group. And because in the final analysis, we're all individuals and we all make choices as such. I gave you an example of a real situation where a gun absolutely would not have helped. The lived experience of Jews in Germany was made up of those real situations. There was no abstract world where the Jews, as a group, could decide to resist or not. There was no physical or electronic space where that was possible. People had to decide what to do on their own, in an environment where deciding to resist meant not only risking your own life, but the lives of your immediate family as well. You can't look at this stuff in a vacuum - I mean, obviously you can, but it's stupid to try. If you want to understand it, consider the historical context.

The Jews of prewar Germany had to decide what to do in a world where they were treated as pariahs, where the law and society was stacked against them, where violence or the threat of violence backed everything the government did. If the German Jews had all been organized into militias for years before the Nazis came, and everyone from babies to bubbes had had a sidearm in their hand, had been drilling and training for years and were ready to resist, would it have been different? Maybe. Probably. I don't know. If the Jews had acted like the fucking Knights Templar, maybe Hitler wouldn't have come after them. (Then again, what happened to the Knights Templar?)

But that's a fantasy. That thing I just wrote has no connection to history. It's not talking about the real Jews of Germany in 1933-1939, who were just ordinary people thrust into a horrible situation. Things would get a little worse, a little worse, a little worse. Some people said, we are Jews, we've survived millennia of pogroms and harsh treatment, we'll be okay. Some worried - some made plans to leave (there was a time when the Nazis made leaving relatively easy). Some wanted to fight back, although many of the young angry men had already left for Palestine to fight there. Many were old, sick, disabled, or children. There isn't some cinematic moment where everyone reaches their breaking point and makes a decision to resist. They were just people, just ordinary people, trying to get by in a hostile world. Individual will, self-determination, only goes so far. Guns aren't some avatar by which you can control your own destiny, or by which an entire people automatically gets to defy all external odds. They're just a tool, and sometimes they can't help you.

u/quelques_heures · 1 pointr/pics

> he was still a powerful leader and an efficient administrator.

Uhhh, I think you better re-read your Evans!

u/TweetsInCommentsBot · 1 pointr/de


> 2016-11-14 03:01 UTC

> This is literally out of Hitler's playbook. @anamariecox

>[Attached pic] [Imgur rehost]

>[Attached pic] [Imgur rehost]


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u/ex-ape · 1 pointr/AskHistorians

I would have to recommend The Third Reich in Power by Richard Evans, I think it will provide good answers to most if not all of your questions. The book is the second part of a trilogy, with the first book being The Coming of the Third Reich. and the third being The Third Reich at War. All three are excellent, and can be enjoyed on their own, however all three together provide a great history of Nazi Germany from beginning to end.

u/Murkaholic · 1 pointr/politics

Read that then maybe keep tut tutting to yourself


Yeah all those fear and anxiety based people on the left. I wonder why.

u/clarkstud · 1 pointr/scifi
u/veddy_interesting · 1 pointr/Keep_Track

I urge you to be careful of giving in to despair, or accepting that nothing will or can be done. Remember where that can lead. Instead, please insist that our rickety institutions perform as designed, and protest if they do not.

Remember that the majority of us are not in favor of any of this nonsense.

"Each act, each occasion, is worse than the last, but only a little worse. You wait for the next and the next. You wait for one great shocking occasion, thinking that others, when such a shock comes, will join with you in resisting somehow. You don’t want to act, or even talk, alone; you don’t want to ‘go out of your way to make trouble.’ Why not?—Well, you are not in the habit of doing it. And it is not just fear, fear of standing alone, that restrains you; it is also genuine uncertainty."

They Thought They Were Free: The Germans, 1933-45

u/oneiric44 · 1 pointr/books

That quote is from this book, hardly a conspiracy. I know nothing about the site from the link, I just googled for the quote.

Thank you for recommending Hannah Arendt's Origins of Totalitarianism, I will check it out.

> This idea that Hitler tricked the Germans is really dangerous because it refuses to recognize the fundamental structure of totalitarianism as a movement of society as a whole, not just a few moustached villains.

This is not the point I was trying to make at all. And I completely agree with you.

u/Siganid · 1 pointr/Libertarian

This book was written expressly for deniers like you:

u/BigBlackThu · 1 pointr/guns
u/plbogen · 1 pointr/Judaism

>"Oh, had we only known about the Holocaust!"

That is the worst kind of revisionism. Milton Mayer's "They Thought They Were Free" ( helped debunk this story. The German people knew well what was going on and they didn't think twice to help themselves to the spoils of the Holocaust. There were more than 20k camps throughout the Reich and conquered territories. Details were published in papers and magazines throughout Germany. Even the New York Times ran articles about the camps.

Here is a recent article talking about the myth that the German people did not know.

u/MattJFarrell · 1 pointr/AskHistorians

Great book on that story:

But, to be fair, Schloss Itter was more of a resort than a castle, but it still had medieval style walls and gates. Basic story goes: French POWs were being held in the castle. End of war seems close, camp guards leave the prisoners alone in the castle. Diehard SS and Wehrmacht are under orders to kill the POWs. Hodgepodge collection of US tankers, infantry, and anti-Nazi German and Austrian troops rush to the castle to protect them. Battle ensues. Read the book, it's a great read.

u/AFlyingGerman · 1 pointr/RandomActsOfGaming

This is it, FINALLY a randomactsofgaming question that I'm prepared for.

Battle of Schloss Itter, a castle in Austria that was liberated by American troops and about to be attacked by the overwhelming force of the 17th waffen-SS panzer grenadiers division. The castle held many french VIPS that had been labeled for execution, they needed to hold the castle and defend the french vips. vastly outnumbered, the American troops were then joined by German Wehrmacht troops, as well as the french vips and their wife's to fight the waffen SS. They held out long enough to be reinforced by allied Austrian and American soldiers. It's the only time in WW2 that American troops fought side by side with previously enemiesGerman troops, and the Only recorded time that Americans ever fought in defense of a medieval castle.
It's an incredible true story, written into a book called the last battle by Stephen Harding.

I'm mobile so I'll link you to more info when I get on my computer but here's the addresses(forgot how to link, I'll fix that later) to the amazon page.

Thanks for the opportunity!

u/Lonetrek · 1 pointr/WorldOfWarships

There's a great write up on this in the book Castles of Steel

u/teamyoshi · 1 pointr/AskMen

If you haven't read it already, you would probably enjoy this book.

u/zEconomist · 1 pointr/gaming

Bloodlands: Europe between Hitler and Stalin is an excellent source on why and how Hitler killed non-combatants. I do not recall anything about suicide rates changing policy. When the war was going well, the plan was to ship undesirables east and starve them to create the new German frontier, sort of like the Wild West in the US. When the war stalled, they became mouths to feed, so they starved and shot them. When the war created labor shortages in German factories, they shipped laborers back to Germany to work since all the Germans were busy dying in Russia/Ukraine/Belarus. Most non-combatant victims never saw the inside of a concentration camp.
TLDR on book
lazy TLDR: it's complicated.

u/PresidentialSophist · 1 pointr/StrangerThings

Well you see, the reason I defend Operation Condor and Cold War FP is because of this debate about the best form of government.

Let's say group A wants to form a Marxist vanguard party and wishes to suspend democracy due to democracy being a tool of the bourgeois. So they run in the next election says they want to suspend democracy to give the people the true power through a dictatorship of the proletariat. Sounds pretty cool right? Labor rights, free stuff, worker's paradise! Sounds like the kind of political system for me. Except, oh no, it doesn't work like that. Instead of a worker's paradise, it devolved into a secret police state where no property, personal, economic, political or spiritual rights exist. Well shit, what am I supposed to do now?

My point is that yeah, we should kill people that meet two criteria, those criteria being:

  1. The desire to act out a totalitarian state, dismantling natural rights in favor or greater control of the state in people's lives and

  2. The ability to carry out said desires.

    So no I don't think we should bust into every fourteen year old's room that browses /r/LateStageCapitalism and murder them, but if they grow older, begin to voice totalitarian, anti-market opinions, begin to arm up and talk of revolution, then yeah let's get some deathsquads.

    If nazis were a credible threat to our democracy, we certainly should eliminate them, the same for the anarchists, socialist and other totalitarian ideologies.

    Pinochet, Franco, Salazar and Peron were hardly totalitarian, they were people who just wanted to see their country do better. Now, thanks to their efforts, those countries all enjoy successful liberal democracies today.

    I have some reading lists which would be better than reading internet forums posted anonymously about political economies that have never worked.

    The Condor Years

    Diplomacy by Kissinger

    Bloodlands: The Land Between Hitler and Stalin

    The Black Book of Communism

u/todoloco16 · 1 pointr/PoliticalDiscussion

>The atlantic slave trade moved about 10 million slaves in total, and not all of them died.

12 million in total. But I am referring to all slaves. Those born slaves as well. That numbers in the 10s of millions. And dying as a slave counts as dying due to slavery.

>no, they didn't.

Compelling argument. The Congo Free State contolled by Belgium alone killed around 10 million Africans.

And great job ignoring all the other examples of Western atrocities!

>ah, yeas, I forgot how tenured professors were considered just as reliable as reddit posts. how silly of me.

Oh you want a professor! No problem!

>except they aren't,

Yes they are. See how great of an argument that is!

>atrocities of a certain size most definitely are.

No, certainly not. As I've shown.

>this is a flat out lie. It was the bolishiveks and their allies who covered up the extent of the famine, as has been well documented.

Perhaps you should read some more of the book.

>socialists have spent a century arguing for nationalization of hte means of production. when that ends badly, as it does in almost all cases, you don't get to redefine your terms and ignore your failures.

Many, but not all, socialists saw or see nationalization as a way for worker control, but that doesn't mean nationalization is socialism. And no, it doesn't always end badly anyway. Worker control is what all socialists can agree on, and therefore is socialism.

u/standard_deviation · 1 pointr/worldnews

Not OP but the 6 million victims number is correct. You can check it here or here.

Also most of the Soviet killing took place in times of peace while Hitler killed in wars. So comparing WWII stats is misleading.

Also not well known is the fact that Stalin killed another 1,5 million people in Ukraine right after WWII in 1945/46 through another forced starvation.

u/WontDieIn_A_Hospital · 1 pointr/BattlefieldV

My favorite work on the eastern front.

It’s an easy spot to start as well.

u/kirklennon · 1 pointr/explainlikeimfive

Here's a book recommendation for you: Bloodlands: Europe Between Hitler and Stalin. Read it and be informed. Trigger warning: intentional famine leads to cannibalism.

u/Hstrike · 1 pointr/news

Please provide a source for your revisionist 10M figure.

Second: am I not saying that both are equally as responsible for war crimes, democide and genocide?

Look, you can take a look at the numbers the way you want. Brutally killing noncombatants in the millions still makes you a regime that stands on the wrong side of history.

I dare you to read Bloodlands. You won't finish it.

Whether you establish a classification between whoever kills more is up to you; defending either of them likens you to both.

u/dsmid · 1 pointr/MapPorn

I recommend the book Bloodlands by Timothy Snyder.

u/timsboss · 1 pointr/EnoughTrumpSpam

I suggest you read this book.

u/Toughsnow · 1 pointr/polandball

Well, right now I'm reading Bloodlands for a history course, so that should be... uh, inspiring?

Then again, just seeing the rules, I would have to be careful about selections here.

u/MahatmaGandalf · 1 pointr/explainlikeimfive

This should be at the top, as it really helps to rephrase the question. To anyone else interested: energy conservation is a direct consequence of an "action principle" combined with a symmetry, so the question should instead be,

"Why is nature so well-described by action principles, and why is physics invariant if you shift the time coordinate?"

This is stuff that physicists still debate and try to understand, so you're not going to get a definitive answer.

But you can get some intuition about why these things should be true. For the second question, it's pretty natural to think of all times as being "equivalent" in the eyes of physical law. Then it makes sense that shifting in time should be a symmetry.

Unfortunately, the former question is a little harder to dig if you're five. If anybody is interested: one way to understand it is to get a physical intuition for D'Alembert's principle. Doing some work then gets you to Hamilton's principle, which is what the first question is talking about; see e.g. chapter 5.1 of this book for a derivation.

u/Loco_Mosquito · 1 pointr/AskPhysics

If you look on Amazon, there are a lot of inexpensive physics texts put out by Dover - for example, analytical mechanics or E&M. They're so cheap that I usually pick these up to supplement whatever text is recommended for each of my courses.

This poster is also baller as shit.

u/FieldLine · 1 pointr/Physics

Any suggestions on how to approach high-level physics without a formal math background?

I am an engineer with an academic concentration in signals processing and a minor in physics, so I do have a strong quantitative background. However, my training was heavily slanted towards ad-hoc problem solving rather than rigorous analysis, so I find myself lost as I tackle topics grounded in formal mathematics.

Specifically, I have been reading Lanczos' The Variational Principles of Mechanics, a popular analytical mechanics text, with great difficulty.

Is it worth reading a pure math book on differential geometry or something similar? How do most graduate students study advanced physics, when an undergraduate physics education doesn't use much math beyond basic PDEs?

u/Carthonas · 1 pointr/history

This one takes you through the 30 years war all the way to the downfall and dissolution of the Third Reich. Pretty Prussia-Centric, but still damn good.

u/GadsdenPatriot1776 · 1 pointr/politics

Well it wasn't just Rome. Glubb looked at eleven empires over the course of history. I copied a relevant summary from the end. It isn't just the administrative state that leads to the collapse of an Empire, to be fair.

As numerous points of interest have arisen in the course of this essay, I close with a brief
summary, to refresh the reader’s mind.
> (a) We do not learn from history because our studies are brief and prejudiced.

> (b) In a surprising manner, 250 years emerges as the average length of national greatness.

> (c) This average has not varied for 3,000 years. Does it represent ten generations?

> (d) The stages of the rise and fall of great
nations seem to be:

> The Age of Pioneers (outburst)

> The Age of Conquests

> The Age of Commerce

> The Age of Affluence

> The Age of Intellect

> The Age of Decadence.

> (e) Decadence is marked by:

> Defensiveness

> Pessimism

> Materialism

> Frivolity

> An influx of foreigners

> The Welfare State

> A weakening of religion.

> (f) Decadence is due to:

> Too long a period of wealth and power

> Selfishness

> Love of money

> The loss of a sense of duty.

> (g) The life histories of great states are amazingly similar, and are due to internal factors.

> (h) Their falls are diverse, because they are largely the result of external causes.

> (i) History should be taught as the history of the human race, though of course with emphasis on the history of the student’s own country.

EDIT: Holy crap I suck at formatting. I rarely comment, which is probably why.

The real question is how technology will either speed up, slow down. or prevent the same thing from happening to America.

Will definitely check this out! Is this the book you are referring to?

u/Prometherion666 · 1 pointr/worldnews

Hitlers Willing Executioners

Really good book on this subject.

u/Notmyrealname · 1 pointr/todayilearned
u/cdzrom4 · 1 pointr/Art

There are plenty of books about the German populace's complicity in the Holocaust and many do make some controversial and arguable claims, but I think the book that stays closest to historical fact is this one. I understand you're not going to just order this book and read it because I disagree with your claims, but if you really want to understand how the Holocaust happened and why the Germans did it, read this. The book basically documents how the Nazis persuaded the German populace to along with its genocidal ideology. Thuggery, scapegoating, and good old fear were the main tools the party used.

This is also a fascinating read: The Good Old Days: The Holocaust as Seen by Its Perpetrators and Bystanders

u/EatingSandwiches1 · 1 pointr/todayilearned

I suggest you read " Hitlers willing executioners" by Daniel Goldhagen

It provides a lot of convincing evidence that European nations that were occupied by the Germans in many ways did not do enough and often times the local citizens contributed greatly to the effort to eliminate Jews. Look at the local authorities in Vichy France for instance.

u/NinaMarx · 1 pointr/Pete_Buttigieg

Your discussion of Nazi Germany is accurate, but the crushing economic situation after World War I is but one factor which led to the Holocaust. I recommend Hitler's Willing Executions: Ordinary Germans and the Holocaust.

I don't think you meant to say that regular folks only turn to murder because they feel economically oppressed. American Southerners mounted a campaign of terror and murder post-Reconstruction, which again roped in ordinary people to kill based on ideology.

A country with 3.5% unemployment is not attracted to fascism for primarily economic reasons. The economy was a mess in 2008 - people didn't go all Blood and Soil, because the Party in charge was promoting hope, not fear of the other.

Those struggling the hardest pay the least attention to politics in America. The economy is good. Trump's followers are not destitute. We have to grapple with the fact that economics is not the motivating factor for people voting for Republicans and fascism.

u/idelovski · 1 pointr/europe

I have read his book and he pretty much admits that. It's not like he says, yes I knew it all, I've seen concentration camps and mass murder, but explains he was at first a nobody and connections with the top nazis gave him high life, importance and amazing friendships with all kinds of people inside and outside of Germany. Yeah, with those nazies in the package came a lot of bad stuff, but consciously he chose to ignore it and pretend none of it exists.

He's not proud of himself in the end, he understands how unprincipled it was to associate himself with those barbarians, but accepts his behavior as pragmatical. Shades of gray and stuff.

u/The_Real_Harry_Lime · 1 pointr/worldnews

Alright, you're still taking the public word of history's most famous manipulative liar.
You're believing what he said in public speeches. Speeches he was giving for political reasons. Portraying himself as a Catholic to some audiences was politically expedient. The wikipedia article has dozens of sources, or you could go to library and check out transcriptions of Hitler's private conversations "Table Talk" , or Josef Goebbels' diary, or Albert Speer's memoir
There are literally no better and purer sources as to his private opinion on matters in existence.
You are still taking Hitler's public pronouncements at face value. Are you the reincarnation of Neville Chamberlain? You probably don't believe that the Nazi's actually invaded Czechoslovakia because Hitler publicly promised he wouldn't at Munich...I got news for you, mate "Hitler promised not to invade Czechoslovakia, Jeremy...welcome to the real world."
You need to stop being so gullible.

u/AMZN-ASSOCIATE · 1 pointr/AskReddit

I haven't read the book but if you are looking for other books about the Third Reich I would highly recommend this one. You can't "trust" it anymore than you can trust any other autobiography but it is fascinating nonetheless.

u/diogenesbarrel · 1 pointr/todayilearned

The book cited is this one

Some 150,000 Jews served in the German Army in the WW2, even generals (Rommel wasn't one of them).


Doesn't really fit the myths about the WW2.

u/JohnM565 · 1 pointr/samharris

Kapos still supported the system. Whether they got a nice chocolate bar out of it or not.


They knew this and they still supported the party. That's not getting into the Jewish German military members whom also supported the Nazi party.

Just because a group can find an Uncle Tom [a self-hating gay person like Milo] doesn't mean that they suddenly can't be bigoted.

u/Battle4Hypocrisy · 1 pointr/Israel

Group 13



Jewish Ghetto Police

Abraham Gancwajch

Stephanie von Hohenlohe

Stella Kübler

Alfred Nossig

Chaim Rumkowski

Henric Streitman

Józef Szeryński

Ignaz Trebitsch-Lincoln

Hitler's Jewish Soldiers

Uncovered: new evidence of Jewish movie moguls’ extensive collaboration with Nazis in the 1930s

The Collaboration: Hollywood's Pact with Hitler

>"To continue doing business in Germany after Hitler's ascent to power, Hollywood studios agreed not to make films that attacked the Nazis or condemned Germany's persecution of Jews."

The Transfer Agreement

>The Transfer Agreement is Edwin Black's compelling, award-winning story of a negotiated arrangement in 1933 between Zionist organizations and the Nazis to transfer some 50,000 Jews, and $100 million of their assets, to Jewish Palestine in exchange for stopping the worldwide Jewish-led boycott threatening to topple the Hitler regime in its first year.

u/we_are_sex_bobomb · 0 pointsr/politics
u/A_Real_Live_Fool · 0 pointsr/worldnews

Check out the book Bloodlands by Timothy Snyder. It's an excruciating and depressing read, but the empirical evidence Snyder uses makes its very clear that the famines in the early years of the USSR were NOT by any means accidental or due to ineptitude. Unfortunately, I do not have my copy with me at the moment, but if you're interested in know way more than you ever wanted to know about the Soviet Famines in the 1930's, this is the book to go to. Here is a rather grizzly excerpt:

>Survival was a moral as well as a physical struggle. A woman doctor wrote to a friend in June 1933 that she had not yet become a cannibal, but was “not sure that I shall not be one by the time my letter reaches you.” The good people died first. Those who refused to steal or to prostitute themselves died. Those who gave food to others died. Those who refused to eat corpses died. Those who refused to kill their fellow man died. Parents who resisted cannibalism died before their children did.

u/rocaralonso · 0 pointsr/changemyview

>at the top of the screen? THE holocaust is a specific event involving nazi germany. It is distinct from A holocaust.

And, nobody uses Holocaust to address a genocide different than THE Holocaust.

>No grain was requisitioned.
This is a lie.

Trosky, exiliated in Mexico during those years, is a really great source about the USSR agriculture.

>declaring that the state now owns your grain is the definition of requisition.

Declaring the land state owned is requisition. Give that land to the peasants, in exchange of an annual production quota, isn't.

>I fail to see what you think you're proving with these numbers.

That the USSR had not INTENDED to starve the peasants.

>Again, you straight up deny a holocaust. There is no doubt that millions starved. The reduced demand quotas were still in excess of what was produced.

Again, you still doesn't know what a Genocide is. I never denied the deaths by starvation, I deny that the USSR had the INTENTION of starving them. Without intention, you CAN'T have a genocide.

>There is no doubt that the famine was denied, that international aid was refused.

So, they denied the famine, but they low the quotas and send food to the starving areas?? Strange.

u/GigabitSuppressor · 0 pointsr/samharris

If that's the case why was there no Holocaust in the middle east against the Jews? Why weren't they completely exterminated?

In reality, of course, Mideastern Jews lived in relative peace in the region and were completely integrated until the white supremacist Ashkenazi colonial invasions of the late 19th and 20th century.

Many of these white Ashkenazi Jews were white supremacists and some were outright Nazis.

u/BoozedBlaster · 0 pointsr/history

> Hitler put of resources to round up and burn million of innocent people was that too keep Germany warm?

German Jews had something Hitler needed - wealth. Yet another wealth redistribution.

There was enough Jews serving Nazi Germany, and apparently Hitler didn't mind

u/ih8yallmore · 0 pointsr/funny

They weren't outsiders. They were part of the community, they were fully assimilated and were making great contributions to society under the moors but when the Catholics retook the Iberian peninsula, they changed the status of Jews.

Yes, I did tell you to go to Church. The principle place for anti-antisemitism in the United States (if that's where you are) is in the evangelical church, who just so happen to fund the Jews for Jesus movement. You may not realize but you are a part of group that seeks to destroy Jews, Judaism and everything that I am. So yes, I called you an anti-Semite. Go to church and pray. Your faith is bullshit. and I am calling it like I see it. Throw all the scripture from the new testament that you want but I have read more the TNK in the original language than you can fathom. I am comfortable in knowing that you believe in a MAN that never existed.

And, not once have you refuted me arguments regarding reasoning for anti-semitic acts.
Go read a few books on this:

Ordinary Men
brief lesson

I am not going to take religious advice or even academic advice from someone who doesn't have a PhD in their name or a degree from a religious institution that carries some weight.

u/drakesylvan · 0 pointsr/worldnews

Old man following orders who admits he did some wrong, "we must punish him!" He's 93, what are you going to do? Put him in prison for a year before he dies?

I suggest everyone read Ordinary Men by Chris Browning. It will open your mind to the lives of the SS and other Nazi members during the war. One of the best books on this subject.

You know what happened to those who didn't follow orders under the Nazis? They killed you, threatened your family, and sometimes put you in with their enemies. If you were labeled a Jewish sympathizer, it could be just as bad a fate as the Jews in Poland.

u/LAMO_u_cray · 0 pointsr/neoliberal

I'm starting to get the sense that you didn't read my first comment. I literally said a very specific two year period before the end of stalingrad.

I then went on to talk about the people who joined the red army in the early war after the shock of operation barbarossa.

Read the following Books for more information:

Ivan's war



The Fall of Berlin

I don't know why you keep posting things from after the date range I specified. So many of the men who faugh in the early battles were dead by the time even operation Uranus took place, let alone during invasion of Germany.

u/RabidRaccoon · 0 pointsr/worldnews

> I think Hitler was not evil in the sense that he thought he did the right thing for humanity. And I think he was and idealist.

Umm, no that's not true. If you read this

he was anything but an idealist. And towards the end he said something along the lines of "if the Russians win the war it shows they are the superior race so why worry about the German people". I'd say he was a manipulative sociopath - I don't think he much cared for humanity. Of course he didn't say this in public because he'd never have got power. Once he was in power though and talking to his minions his misanthropy is very obvious.

u/random314 · 0 pointsr/atheism

Hitler is a politician what he feeds to the public is just playing to the crowd and you fell for it and took his public statements literally word by word? I'm not saying you're wrong, Hitler is a Christian no doubt about it, but what he says and how he really felt are two different things.

u/wyldcat · 0 pointsr/Documentaries

Because he's literally acting like Hitler did in the 30s. Maybe you should open a history book, here's one I can recommend.

u/Dookiestain_LaFlair · 0 pointsr/pics

I think it's a book titled "The rise and fall of the third reich"

u/heystoopid · -1 pointsr/worldpolitics

Surely you jest, forget much about the Beer Hall Putsch.

Now history tells us, according to 'The Rise and fall of the Third Reich by William L Shirer' "National Socialist German Workers Party", were pure evil, anti democratic autocratic and absolute authoritarian from first principles in 1920, until total defeat on May 7th 1945.

Reality has a liberal bias.

Like to spread the myths around do we?

Edit 1: Very Nasty Leaders indeed :The Nuremberg War Trials

u/hockeysauce · -1 pointsr/PoliticalHumor

I’ll trust a man who was there at the time over a Yale professor born in 1957. Thanks.

u/MIBPJ · -1 pointsr/conspiracy

I had read Bloodlands a while back and it did touch on this issue a few times. The Bolvsheviks and NKVD were not mostly Jewish, but they were disproportionately Jewish. If I recall correctly it was something on the order of 1% of the population was Jewish but 10% of the NKVD leadership was Jewish. That still leaves ~90% non-Jews most of them being ethnic Russians.

u/duhbiap · -1 pointsr/funny

You can run but you cannot hide...

Hitler's Willing Executioners: Ordinary Germans and the Holocaust

u/Lokis_ · -1 pointsr/instantkarma

People like you enable horrors. I'd recommend reading about how badly your attitude can go.

u/drunkredneck2 · -2 pointsr/worldnews

Trust me i have. One of particular interest is a book called "hitler's Jewish Soldiers" Which states over 200,000 jews served in the nazi armed forces. The creator of the feared "Anti Semitic" SS division of the nazi's was created by Emil Maurice a jewish man. Also the financial director of nazi germany national bank throughout the 30s was a jew "Max Warburg". Gee For hitler to be such a violent Anti Semite there sure were alot of jews rushing to join him. :)

u/kenneth_masters · -3 pointsr/AgainstHateSubreddits

This literally sounds like something Hitler would say about Jews. He thought they were vermin, a plague, a disease, or as you said, a mold. He didn't hate them, he was utterly repulsed by them. This book gives some really great lesser known insight into his kind of psychopathy.

Disgust is a much more powerful emotion than hate as it triggers our survival instinct. Be careful.

u/qa2 · -4 pointsr/nba

Little known fact.... he actually has a book out... and it's actually really good. Kind of a long read but helps you really understand his life.

Amazon page for it

u/PinkHatPurpleNipples · -4 pointsr/streetwear

If you'd like an intellectual discussion, I'm all for it, but you don't know enough about me to claim that I am bigoted or anything equally as reprehensible. If you think that you're going to change anyone's mind by typing "lmfao" as many times as possible, then you need to orient yourself and discover your true virtues as an individual instead of using manipulative language for dramatic effect.

> you literally tried comparing the guys 'intentions' to Stalin

Your critical thinking skills are lacking; I drew parallels between intention and action and used idealistic Marxist ideologies as an example of how they can be dangerous when misaligned.

> I'm commenting right now, to shut you the fuck up.

Your intentions are that you're trying to be as boisterous and obstinate as possible to attempt to shut me down without a single sound argument on your side. You lack fundamental understanding of the humanities and haven't educated yourself enough to present yourself as anymore than an uncompromising ideologue with weak rhetoric.

If you really want to sort yourself out, here's a quick reading list:

u/Hirudin · -20 pointsr/ShitWehraboosSay

If you people are interpreting a lecture devoted entirely to relentless criticism of the Nazis as some how being pro-nazi, then this subreddit has truly lost its way.

Do you people not have the ability to think for yourselves?

Edit: He states, at the beginning, that the source he is drawing from is "Hitler's Willing Executioners" so saying that he isn't aware that the Nazis enslaved people is entirely false.

u/Knowledge_420 · -22 pointsr/offlineTV

Ehh, I more feel like myself, and any other like minded individual has an absolute responsibility and duty as both American citizens, and as human beings who would like to see our fellow men & women we share this planet with live, happy, healthy, fulfilling lives. From that perspective, the current president of the United States is one of the single greatest existential threats to any of us getting to see a more prosperous of brighter tomorrow.

He is a would be tyrant, who maybe just maybe, is too stupid and incompetent to stage a hostile takeover of our democratic republic. But we can not allow ourselves to become complacent in the security of our lives ever again, and we must strive everyday to do everything we can to rid ourselves of this cancer sooner rather than later.

I'm done now, I've said my piece...I'll do my best to avoid politics on this board going forward. Just know that no matter how safe and insular your life feels, tyranny can always be around the next corner.

u/Nort_Portland · -38 pointsr/PublicFreakout