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A flawed but valuable account of the early part of WW2.
on 23 November 2012
An interesting if flawed book, with some gems of information casually dropped but rarely followed up. The revelation that nearly half of Germany's Jewish population had applied to US officials emigrate to the USA, and only about 10 per cent approved is a case in point. Schirer seems to lack imagination and perhaps intelligence, and his diaries only come to life in his descriptions of Gemany's 1940 offensives on western Europe. He does lack an interest or an ability to express more than a stereotype of the Germans he meets, even if he, in my view, rightly describes nazism as barbaric and needing condemnation. Prior to the outbreak of war his diary is very flimsy and feels highly selective to provide the apparence of prescience.