Tuesday 21 January 2020

Book Review: Holocaust, Stephen Wynn

This short and easy to read account of the holocaust is, I think, really very good. It's not your typical bloated academic heavyweight tome; worthy but nigh on unreadable. Put together by author (and former policeman) Stephen Wynn, it's refreshingly brief, drawing on a very small number of sources, but still covering quite a lot. 

Over 18 chapters he ranges from pre-war Nazi beginnings, very briefly looking at the roots of anti-Semitism in Germany at that time, and then building to the formulation of the 'final solution' at the infamous Wannsee Conference, in '42, chaired by the equally infamous Reinhard Heydrich..

Various 'Operations', most of the major concentration camps (and mention of many subsidiary ones), and such sub topics as Einsatzgruppen, and female guards, are all covered, before the book looks at contemporary news of the events and ponders how much and what/when the allies learned.

The book ends with Wynn saying 'It cannot and must not ever happen again'. Well, amen to that. But in my view Brexit, Trump, Bojo and co. bode ill for political stability in our times, with their cheap openly xenophobic populism. But back to the book: as a quick and easy introduction to a vast much covered subject, this is a lively and engaging read.  


  1. Im sorry you believe that. I have always enjoyed your reviews but if you believe that myself and the millions like me are capable of creating death camps because of the way we cast our votes, then frankly I would question your sanity. I have spent my entire life serving my country and now devote my time to working with autistic children that would once have been consigned to a nazi gas chamber. To state that somehow me wanting to leave the odious EU would signal a return to such things really pisses me off.

    1. Two things in response: first, this post is first and foremost a book review. I'm not going to enter the minefield of political debate, re Brexit, Bojo, etc, here. (I have a blog at sebpalmer.com, however, on which I would be more than happy to debate the issue.) And second, all I actually say is 'Brexit, Trump, Bojo and co. bode ill for political stability in our times'. And I stand by that 100%.