Happy Halloween, bookies!
Those who have followed this blog for any length of time know that your friendly neighborhood bookseller is something of a World War II buff. Aside from working daily on his own book on a fairly obscure part of this war he reads, eats, watches and absorbs through osmosis just about anything presented about the war. And before you ask, he doesn’t know why. This is how it has always been.
Anyway, there is a new book coming that has him truly excited. Fritz Darges was one of Adolf Hitler’s SS adjutants during the war. Oddly, he was not a member of 1st SS Division Adolf Hitler, the unit specifically tasked with protecting him, but instead was a member of 5th SS Division Viking, the pan-European unit that included not only Germans but French, Dutch, Norwegians, you name it. Darges died recently and his family is honoring his wishes that his memoirs be published after his death. Historians are champing at the bit to read them, me included, for a variety of reasons. Mostly, though, they are hoping that Darges will provide eye witness testimony that Hitler was directing the implementation of the Holocaust. To date nothing has surfaced that ties him directly to the Holocaust leaving apologists to blame everything on Himmler.
I’m interested in the inner workings of the German High Command, as well as the battlefield accounts of a man serving with perhaps the most idealistic of all the Waffen SS formations. Doesn’t that sound like fun?