Hitlers beneficiaries plunder racial war and the n a different perspective on nazi germanyDocument Transcript
Hitlers Beneficiaries: Plunder, Racial War, and the Nazi Welfare State by Gotz Aly Hitlers BeneficiariesA “provocative” account of great “intellectual significance,” illuminating theeconomic workings of the Third Reich—and the reasons ordinary Germanssupported the Nazi state (The New York Times Book Review) In thisgroundbreaking book, historian Götz Aly addresses one of modernhistory’s greatest conundrums: How did Hitler win the allegiance ofordinary Germans? The answer is as shocki ng as it is persuasive: byengaging in a campaign of theft on an almost unimaginable scale —and bychanneling the proceeds into generous social programs—Hitler literally“bought” his people’s consent.
Drawing on secret files and financial records, Aly shows that while Jewsand citizens of occupied lands suffered crippling taxation, mass looting,enslavement, and destruction, most Germans enjoyed an improvedstandard of living. Buoyed by millions of packages soldiers sent from thefront, Germans also benefited from the systematic plunder of Jewishpossessions. Any qualms were swept away by waves of tax breaks andgovernment handouts.Hitler’s Beneficiaries has been hailed as “startling” by Richard Eva ns, andas “fascinating and important” by Christopher Browning. Above all, asOmer Bartov testifies, this remarkable book “irreversibly transforms ourunderstanding of the Third Reich.”Features:* ISBN13: 9780805087260* Condition: NEW* Notes: Brand New from Publisher. No Remainder Mark.Personal Review: Hitlers Beneficiaries: Plunder, Racial War, andthe Nazi Welfare State by Gotz AlyRecently, several new studies have emerged on Nazi Germany and thesecond war which disregard the military aspects of the conflict, and ins teadenrich our understanding by focusing upon the economic dimensions ofthe Hitler regime. One such book is Adam Toozes "Wages ofDestruction"; this is a second example. The authors thesis is articulated inthe books subtitle: "Plunder, Racial War, and the Nazi Welfare State."What does the author mean by the term "Nazi Welfare State"?; I have notseen that one before.For Gotz Aly, the Nazis recognized the chaos and near successfulCommunist/Socialist revolution (Rosa Luxemberg and the Spartakists) thatGermany experienced in the final stages of WWI and briefly thereafter,when for example Berlin looked like a scene from "All Quiet on theWestern Front." The German civil population had suffered mightily duringthe war, coming close to starvation due to the allied blockade. As a result,the Nazi leadership determined that it would do everything possible tokeep the civilian population happy and contented during the second war:low taxes; plenty of food; replacement of apartments and their contentslost due to allied bombing; and lots of financial goodies. The only problemwith this tactic was how to finance it all. The answer was easy for theleadership--steal literally everything of value from Jews in Germany,captured areas, and even those resident in allies like Italy. In addition,force captured nations to subjugate their economies in order to makepayments to Germany, as well as willingly allow their own consumer goodsto be gobbled up by German soldiers who paid with makeshift currencythat only led to inflation and near disaster for these economies, andwreaked privation upon civil populations.
So, in short, for the author the German population was not cowed intosubmission by fear of the Nazi tyranny--rather it was bribed with theproceeds of what can only be described as plundering theft on anenormous scale, implemented by a well organized bureaucracy dedicatedto that purpose. This outstanding study documents this process in minutedetail--in fact, it is easy to get lost in hundreds of pages of economic dataand explanation, so skimming (unless you are a specialist in this area)becomes essential. The key point is that it is all here, in as much detail asthe reader can absorb, and it is not a pretty picture. The book reminds usthat it takes more to understand military conflict and the oppression of asegment of the population than to study guns and tanks--as usual, the bestadvice is to "follow the money." For More 5 Star Customer Reviews and Lowest Price:Hitlers Beneficiaries: Plunder, Racial War, and the Nazi Welfare State by Gotz Aly 5 Star Customer Reviews and Lowest Price!