Hanna Reitsch: Flying for the Fatherland Hardcover – 20 Oct 1988
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Top Customer Reviews
You can not take away, this Women had determination and courage.
This book want's to down play that. Good records of facts and details. But for me, The Sky Is my Kingdom, is a better book.
Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)
Hanna's autobiography is highly selective, and you will be confused not to find her mention events that are widely known about her. She writes well though, and the book is a good read.
Piskiewicz's book is also highly readable, although for the most part he seems to rely on secondary sources (often Lomax's book). He concentrates mainly on her wartime experiences, and seems to have found sources of information in fellow test pilots that Lomax failed to get. As the book progresses you see the author forming his own opinion about Reitsch, her flying skills, and her claim of ignorance about Nazi wrongdoings.
Lomax's book is the most complete, but also the most detached. She relates in interesting detail Reitsch's life in it's entirety. WW2 ends about 2/3 of the way through and the book follows her on through her experiences in India and Ghana. It's fascinating reading, and often gripping.
Unfortunately, Lomax never offers her own assessment of Reitsch, nor does she give us enough info about her contemporaries to make our own analysis. Clearly Hanna was a Nazi sympathizer, and not only naive but in denial about the Nazi party's real nature. But just how guilty was she of aiding the Nazi cause? And how reformed was she afer the war? Lomax won't commit.
It would have been nice to know about other prominent German technologists who use this same line of defense when quized about their aid to the Nazis. Von Braun, Kurt Tank, etc. Lomax also fails to identify some of Hanna's associates (Rudel) as the ardent, extreme Nazis they were.
So once comes away with the same conclusion you reach reading about the other famous female Hitler protege: Leni Reifenstahl: A talented ego-centric in denial about the net effect of her own life's work.
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