This deeply researched and informative book traces the biographies of thirty "typical" perpetrators of the Holocaust—some well known, some obscure—who survived World War II. Donald M. McKale reveals the shocking reality that the perpetrators were only rarely, if ever, tried or punished for their crimes, and nearly all alleged their innocence in Germany's extermination of nearly six million European Jews during the war. He highlights the bitter contrasts between the comfortable postwar lives of many war criminals and the enduring suffering of their victims.
The author shows how immediately after the war's end in 1945, Hitler's minions, whether the few placed on trial or the many living in freedom, carried on what amounted to a massive postwar ideological campaign against Jews. To be sure, the perpetrators didn't challenge the fact that the Holocaust happened. But in the face of exhaustive evidence showing their culpability, nearly all declared they had done nothing wrong, they had not known about the Jewish persecution until the war's end, and they had little or no responsibility or guilt for what had happened. In making these and other claims denying their involvement in the Holocaust, they defended the Nazi atrocities and anti-Semitism. Nearly every fabrication of these war criminals found its way into the mythology of postwar Holocaust deniers, who have used them, in one form or another, to buttress the deniers' biggest lie—that the Holocaust did not happen. The perpetrators, therefore, helped advance Holocaust denial without having denied the Holocaust happened.
Written in a compelling narrative style, Nazis after Hitler is the first to provide an overview of the lives of Nazis who survived the war, the vast majority of whom escaped justice. McKale provides a unique and accessible synthesis of the extensive research on the Holocaust and Nazi war criminals that will be invaluable for all readers interested in World War II.
About Donald M. McKale
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Published December 16, 2011
by Rowman & Littlefield Publishers.
History, Travel, War, Law & Philosophy, Professional & Technical, Biographies & Memoirs.