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Karl Brandt: The Nazi Doctor: Medicine and Power in the Third Reich Paperback – 15 Apr 2008
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"Remarkable new research by a German historian is revealing the ideological evolution of one of Hitler's closest associates. The research- which has taken nine years to carry out-shows how an apparently decent caring man metamorphosed into a mass murderer who was sentenced to death at Nuremberg." -BBC
"An important contribution to the history of the Third Reich. In exploring the extensive web of relationships of the most powerful medical figure during the wartime period, he provides valuable insights into the institutional dynamics behind the criminal medical policies of the regime." - German History
'[An] excellent book' - Medicine, Conflict and Survival
"How such an intelligent and gifted young physician could betray everything that medicine - not to mention Western civilization - stood for, is the main theme of Schmidt's spellbinding book....Although Schmidt's book is historical and cannot be classified as part of the modern-day 'culture wars, ' its conclusion carries a powerful lesson for medical ethics in our own time." - First Things--Sanford Lakoff "First Things "
"Ulf Schmidt's excellent biography of Karl Brandt, a significant, though hitherto remarkably little-known, member of Hitler's entourage casts significant new light on how a cultured, intelligent and idealistic doctor could so fervently believe in the principles of Nazi inhumanity that down to his execution he saw nothing wrong in eliminating the sick and infirm in the interests of a more healthy Volkskorper."--Sanford Lakoff
About the Author
Dr Ulf Schmidt is Professor of Modern History at the
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Although Brandt claimed otherwise at his trail, he was neck-deep in T-4 and Nazi human medical experiments. For almost every one of Brandt's denials, there is a letter or document to prove He Lied. Brandt obviously believed in "euthanasia" (read: murder) of the mentally and physically disabled. And as he either tacitly and/or directly approved of human experimentation, he falls into the same category as Mengele and Clauburg. With Brandt, it was all about power. He began as one of Hitler's attending physicians and ended up a perfect monster.
Karl Brandt: The Nazi Doctor: Medicine and Power in the Third Reich should be required reading for all medical ethicists and students of the Holocaust; it should be in every library. I say this not only because the book is superbly written and researched, but also because it illustrates the banality of evil -- and how easy it is for the power-hungry to buy into the idea that one is superior to others.
The photographs of Brandt are disturbing. Brandt was a handsome man with a wife and child. He went on Nazi pleasure trips, which were photographically documented. In every picture, his face is serene. It's eerie.
I'm a disabled person. I'm also a scholar. This is one of four books I'll put in my "run kit" during fire season. It's that important.