Based on extensive primary source research, John Bryden’s Fighting to Lose presents compelling evidence that the German intelligence service — the Abwehr — undertook to rescue Britain from certain defeat in 1941. Recently opened secret intelligence files indicate that the famed British double-cross or double-agent system was in fact a German triple-cross system. These files also reveal that British intelligence secretly appealed to the Abwehr for help during the war, and that the Abwehr’s chief, Admiral Canaris, responded by providing Churchill with the ammunition needed in order to persuade Roosevelt to lure the Japanese into attacking Pearl Harbor. These findings and others like them make John Bryden’s Fighting to Lose one of the most fascinating books about World War II to be published for many years.
"Perhaps the most authentic account one will ever read about how intelligence really works." -The Washington Times
Drawing on original sources from the Stasi archives and the recollections of contemporary witnesses, The Stasi: Myth and Reality reveals the intricacies of the relationship between the Stasi enforcers, its agents and its targets/victims, and demonstrates how far the Stasi octopus extended its tentacles into people’s lives and all spheres of society.
The origins and developments of this vast system of repression are examined, as well as the motivation of the informers and the ways in which they penetrated the niches of East German society. The final chapters assess the ministry’s failure to help overcome the GDR’s inherent structural defects and demonstrate how the Stasi’s bureaucratic procedures contributed to the implosion of the Communist system at the end of the 1980’s.
Ordinary Men is the true story of Reserve Police Battalion 101 of the German Order Police, which was responsible for mass shootings as well as round-ups of Jewish people for deportation to Nazi death camps in Poland in 1942. Browning argues that most of the men of RPB 101 were not fanatical Nazis but, rather, ordinary middle-aged, working-class men who committed these atrocities out of a mixture of motives, including the group dynamics of conformity, deference to authority, role adaptation, and the altering of moral norms to justify their actions. Very quickly three groups emerged within the battalion: a core of eager killers, a plurality who carried out their duties reliably but without initiative, and a small minority who evaded participation in the acts of killing without diminishing the murderous efficiency of the battalion whatsoever.
While this book discusses a specific Reserve Unit during WWII, the general argument Browning makes is that most people succumb to the pressures of a group setting and commit actions they would never do of their own volition.
Ordinary Men is a powerful, chilling, and important work with themes and arguments that continue to resonate today.
“A remarkable—and singularly chilling—glimpse of human behavior...This meticulously researched book...represents a major contribution to the literature of the Holocaust."—Newsweek