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"The good old days" : the Holocaust as seen by its perpetrators and bystanders

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"The good old days" : the Holocaust as seen by its perpetrators and bystanders
Call No: 940.5318 G646

Call Number940.5318 G646
Dates1991; ©1991
Statement of Responsibilityedited by Ernst Klee, Willi Dressen, Volker Riess ; foreword by Hugh Trevor-Roper ; translated by Deborah Burnstone.
SummaryGathers selections from the diaries, letters, and confidential reports of the active and passive participants in the Holocaust.
ContentsForeword / Lord Dacre of Glanton
Preface from the German Edition

Part One
  • 'Acts of Violence... Carried Out Quite Openly': The Murder of Jews in the Daily Life of the Einsatzgruppen
  • 'The brutalization of precious German manpower': The occupation of Poland
    1. Notes of Eastern Territories Commander Johannes Blaskowitz
    2. 'Bloody Wednesday' in Olkusz/Ilkenau
    3. 'Foreign Service': Excerpts from the diary of a cycle battalion
  • 'Each time a victim was beaten to death they started to clap': Pogroms in Kaunas and elsewhere in Lithuania
    1. 'Initially difficult to set a pogrom in motion': Report by Stahlecker, head of Einsatzgruppe A
    2. 'Cheers and laughter': Mass murder in Kovno
    3. 'If they get their revenge, we're in for a hard time': Soldiers from a motorized column watch a massacre in Paneriai, Lithuania
    4. 'Total 137,346': The so-called 'Jäger Report'
  • 'Pushed to their psychological limits': Members of the Einsatzgruppen on the stresses and strains of killing
    1. 'If the victims didn't o as they were told...': Problems during mass shootings
    2. 'It took nerves of steel': The murder of 33,771 Jews in the Babi Yar ravine (29/30 September 1941)
    3. 'A new and better method of killing had to be found': The gas-vans
  • 'Quite happy to take part in shootings': Forced to obey orders—the myth
  • 'Once again I've got to play general to the Jews': From the war diary of Blutordensträger Felix Landau
  • 'Execution as popular entertainment': The murder of Jews as a public spectacle
    1. 'Soldiers sitting on rooftops and platforms watching the show': An execution on 7 August 1941 in Zhitomir
    2. 'Scores of soldiers, some in bathing trunks, watching the proceedings': Major Rösler to Infantry General Schniewindt, 3 January 1942
    3. 'When the Jews saw how easy it was to be executed...': A customs official on murders in Vinnitsa and Brailov
    4. 'Present at the execution with heads of other authorities': A Wirtschaftsführer on mass killings in Boruisk
    5. 'The Twelve Toppers and a Little Hat': A 'Troop Welfare Kamerad' reports
    6. 'The execution area was visited by scores of German spectators': 'Execution tourism' in Liepaja, Latvia
  • 'In the interest of maintaining military discipline': The massacre of children in Byelaya Tserkov, military chaplains and the Wehrmacht
    1. An officer cadet n the killing of the adults
    2. Report by the military chaplain, Dr. Reuss, to Lieutenant-Colonel Groscurth, 1st Generalstaboffizier, 295th Infantry Division
    3. Report by Wehrmachtoberpgarrer Kornmann
    4. Lieutenant-Colonel Groscurth's report to C.-in-C. Sixth Army, Field Marshall von Reichenau
    5. Report by Military Chaplains Tewes and Wilczek
    6. Statement by C.-in-C. Sixth Army, Field Marshall von Reichenau
    7. SS-Obersturmführer August Hafner on the killing of the children
  • 'Practical work for our Führer': Daily life during the Holocaust
    1. Letters by Gendarmerie chief Fritz Jacob
    2. A Gendarmerie Overwachtmeister's photographs
    3. Letters of SS-Obersturmführer Karl Kretschmer (SK 4a)
  • 'His attitude toward the Jews is quite impossible': Documents on persecution in the White Russia Generalbezirk
    1. 'The bodies piled up in the streets': Communication of Slutsk Gebietskommissar to the Generalkommissar in Minsk, 30 October 1941
    2. 'The action rid me of unnecessary mouths to feed': From the situation report of Gebietskommissar Gerhard Erren, 25 January 1942
    3. 'Eliminate the Jews once and for all': Generalkommissar for White Russia Wilhelm Kube, 31 July 1942, to the Reichskommissar for the Ostland, Hinrich Lohse
    4. A 'quite literally slavish attitude to the Jews': SS-Obsersturmbannführer Dr Strauch on Gauleiter Kube
  • 'None of the Jews that were killed is any great loss': Secret verdict of the SS and Police Supreme Court in Munich
    1. Verdict against SS-Untersturmführer Max Taubner, 24 May 1943
    2. Dismissal of the case against the remaining parties, 1 June 1943
    3. The pardon
Part Two
  • 'Delivered and Killed': The Extermination Centres
  • 'Their soldierly conduct is exemplary': Kulmohof (Chełmno) extermination camp in the Wartheland Reichsgau
    1. Photographs
    2. Theodor Malzmüller on the 'plague boils of humanity'
    3. Gas-van driver Walter Burmeiser on whether he ever thought about what he was doing
    4. Kurt Mobius on the guilt of the Jews and his own lack of blame
    5. Interrogation of Adolf Eichmann
    6. Gauleiter greaser to Himmler, 19 March 1943
  • 'The Wannsee Conference decisions implemented': The extermination camps of Belzec, Sobibor and Treblinka
    1. SS-Untersturmführer Josef Overhauser on the early days at Belzec
    2. Erich Fuchs on his duties at Sobibor
    3. The train journey to Belzec: Schutzpolizei Zugwachtmeister Jäcklein's report
    4. 'The camp had clean sanitary facilities': Professor Wilhelm Pfannenstiel, Waffen-SS hygienist, on a gassing at Belzec
    5. The first day at Treblinka: Kurt Franz, deputy camp commandant
    6. 'It was my job to shoot these people': Willi Mentz, the 'Gunman of Treblinka
    7. Kurt Franz on the end of Treblinka
  • 'Food in the officers' mess excellent': Auschwitz
    1. 'I only took part in the murder of some three million people out of consideration of my family': Statement of Maximilian Grabner, head of the Political Department
    2. 'Grabner ordered me to put Zyklon B into the opening': Statement of Hans Stark, registrar of new arrivals
    3. 'There was Bulgarian red wine and Croatian plum brandy': From the diary of SS-Dr Kremer
    4. 'The highest number of gassings in a day was 10,000': Statement of Rudolf Höss
    5. 'So that in the future it would be impossible to establish how many people had been burnt': Rudolf Höss on the elimination of the mass graves
Glossary and abbreviations
Table of equivalent ranks
Einsatzgruppen (mobile execution units in Eastern Europe)
Document sources
Biographical details
Index of persons and places
Physical Description xxi, 314 pages : illustrations ; 25 cm
Carrier Typevolume
PublisherNew York : The Free Press, A Division of Macmillan, Inc.
EditionFirst American Edition
  • Translation of: Schöne Zeiten
  • Includes bibliographical references (pages 283–287) and index
RecognitionGifted in 1993 by Ronnie Tessler