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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
Fascinating Insight into the Third Reich23 Jun. 2011
- Published on Amazon.com
I first became aware of Ulrich von Hassell while studying for my Ph.D. comprehensive exams. He was quoted again and again in the secondary literature dealing with the Third Reich and World War II. Later, while writing my dissertation, I found his diaries to be invaluable while searching for contemporary commentary on people and events of the Nazi period. He knew the decision-makers and was a thoughtful chronicler of the developments from 1938 until just before his execution shortly after the July 20, 1944 plot against Hitler.
Ulrich von Hassell was a diplomat during the Weimar Republic and the Third Reich. The culmination of his diplomatic career was the post of Ambassador to Rome from 1932 to 1938. After he was recalled - a result of both Nazi mistrust of the aristocracy and his opposition to the Anti-Comintern Pact - he joined the Council for Central European Economy, which gave him the freedom to travel throughout Germany and Europe, where he met with potential members of the German resistance and tried to enlist Allied support for action against Hitler. The book's introduction and preface do a good job of explaining Hassell's life and putting his role in the resistance into context.
The diary itself is fascinating. It is extremely readable and show the perspective of a German patriot who was becoming increasingly horrified with the developments in Nazi Germany. The entries include his reactions to Reichskristallnacht, the start and progress of World War II, and attempts to enlist the support of people against Hitler's regime. His descriptions of meetings with leading Nazis and members of the resistance make you feel that you are in the room listening to the conversations. His commentaries on family matters bring him to life.
This edition is much expanded from the earlier edition I used. It includes numerous photographs as well as a description of the events that took place after Hassell was arrested, written by his son and wife.
Highly recommended for both scholars and general readers interested in the Third Reich.
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
Great Deal25 Mar. 2013
- Published on Amazon.com
This book was listed as used, but appears new, and arrived well wrapped and protected. The book itself is fascinating,and causes one to look closely at what is happening now in our country. I bought it because VonHassell is possibly in the family tree, but aside from that it is a well written, and an interesting account of a horrible time in history from the point of view of a German patriot. He loved his country, hated what Hitler was doing to it, and paid with his life trying change the course of history. I highly recommend both the book and the provider.