Based on a deep and wide-ranging research in archival and secondary sources, as well as extensive interviews with more than four hundred Mischlinge and their relatives, Rigg's study breaks truly new ground in a crowded field and shows from yet another angle the extremely flawed, dishonest, demeaning, and tragic essence of Hitler's rule.
Side and front photographs of "Jew" Anton Mayer, similar to those that often accompanied a Mischling's application for exemption.
"Through videotaped interviews, painstaking attention to personnel files, and banal documents not normally consulted by historians, and spurred by a keen sense of personal mission, Rigg has turned up an unexplored and confounding chapter in the history of the Holocaust. The extent of his findings has surprised scholars.
"--Warren Hoge, New York Times
"The revelation that Germans of Jewish blood, knowing the Nazi regime for what it was, served Hitler as uniformed members of his armed forces must come as a profound shock. It will surprise even professional historians of the Nazi years." --John Keegan, author of The Face of Battle and The Second World War
"Startling and unexpected, Rigg's study conclusively demonstrates the degree of flexibility in German policy toward the Mischlinge, the extent of Hitler's involvement, and, most importantly, that not all who served in the armed forces were anti-Semitic, even as their service aided the killing process."--Michael Berenbaum, author of The World Must Know:
The History of the Holocaust "Rigg's extensive knowledge and the preliminary conclusions drawn from his research impressed me greatly. I firmly believe that his in-depth treatment of the subject of German soldiers of Jewish descent in the Wehrmacht will lead to new perspectives on this portion of 20th century German military history."--Helmut Schmidt, Former Chancellor of Germany
"An impressively researched work with important implications for hotly debated questions. Rigg tells some exquisitely poignant stories of individual human experiences that complicate our picture of state and society in the Third Reich."--Nathan A. Stoltzfus, Florida State University, author of Resistance of the Heart: Intermarriage and the Rosenstrasse Protest in Nazi Germany
"An impressive work filled with interesting stories. . . .
By helping us better understand Nazi racial policy at the margins--i.e., its impact on certain members of the German military--Rigg's study clarifies the central problems of Nazi Jewish policies overall."--Norman Naimark, Stanford University, author of Fires of Hatred: Ethnic Cleansing in Twentieth-Century Europe
"An illuminating and provocative study that merits a wide readership and is sure to be much discussed."--Dennis E. Showalter, Colorado College, author of Tannenberg: Clash of Empires
"An outstanding job of research and analysis. Rigg's book will add a great deal to our understanding of the German military, of the place of Jews and people of Jewish descent in the Nazi state, and of the Holocaust. It forces us to deal with the full, complex range of possible actions and reactions by individuals caught up in the Nazi system."--Geoffrey P. Megargee, author of Inside Hitler's High Command
"With the skill of a master detective, Bryan Rigg reveals the surprising and largely unknown story of Germans of Jewish origins in the Nazi military. His work contributes to our understanding of the complexity of faith and identity in the Third Reich."--Paula E. Hyman, Yale University, author of Gender and Assimilation in Modern Jewish History and The Jews of Modern France
"A major piece of scholarship which traces the peculiar twists and turns of Nazi racial policy toward men in the Wehrmacht, often in the highest ranks, who had partly Jewish backgrounds. Rigg has uncovered personal stories and private archives which literally nobody knew existed. His book will be an important contribution to German history."--Jonathan Steinberg, University of Pennsylvania, author of All or Nothing: The Axis and the Holocaust 1941-1943
"An original, groundbreaking, and significant contribution to the history of the Wehrmacht and Nazi Germany."--James S. Corum, School of Advanced Air Power Studies, author of The Roots of Blitzkrieg and The Luftwaffe
"Rigg's work has discovered new academic territory."--Manfred Messerschmidt, Freiburg University, author of Die Wehrmacht im NS-Staat (The Wehrmacht in the Nazi State)
"Rigg's bracing and unintimidated study lays bare the contradiction, confusion and expedience that governed Mischlinge policy and the maiming cost to those whose lives were burdened by anxiety, guilt and collusion. In the end we must be grateful for his book, a penetrating light cast on some of the murkier corners of the human psyche."--Michael Skakun, Aufbau
"Rigg has opened brand new territory for historians and students of war, offering new insight into the Nazi mentality on race."--World War II Magazine
"Rigg has done a very significant piece of historical research and writing."--Milt Rosenberg, WGN Radio, Chicago
"Rigg has written a truly important history. It is original, it has outstanding scholarship, and there is plenty of it!"--James F. Tent, author of In the Shadow of the Holocaust: Nazi Persecution of Jewish-Christian Germans
"A brilliant and extremely disturbing work of masterful historical research. A must read for everyone. It raises more moral dilemmas than one can answer."--Steve Pieczenik, former Deputy Assistant Secretary of State and co-creator of the best selling novels and TV series OP-Center and Net Force
The thousands of pages of documents and oral testimonies (8mm and VHS video) the author collected for this study have been purchased by the National Military Archive of Germany. The Bryan Mark Rigg Collection is housed in the Bundesarchiv-Militärarchiv in Freiburg, Germany.