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    Description

    Until recent years, very little was known of the tens of thousands of foreign nationals from Norway, Denmark, Holland, Belgium, France, and Spain who served voluntarily in the military formations of the German army and the German Waffen-SS. In Kaisergruber's book, the listener discovers important issues of collaboration, the apparent contributions of the volunteers to the German war effort, their varied experiences, their motives, the attitude of the German High Command and bureaucracy, and the reaction to these in the occupied countries. 

    The combat experiences of the Walloons echoed those of the very best volunteer units of the Waffen-SS, although they shared equally in the collapse of the Third Reich in May 1945. Although unapologetic for his service, Kaisergruber makes no special claims for the German cause and writes not from any postwar apologia and dogma but instead from his firsthand observations as a young man experiencing war for the first time, extending far beyond what had been imaginable at the time. His observations of fellow soldiers, commanders, Russian civilians, and the battlefields prove poignant and telling.

    ©2016 Fernand Kaisergruber (P)2018 Tantor

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    • Global
      4 out of 5 stars
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    • Histoire
      5 out of 5 stars
    Image de profile pour DAVIS J BEAM III
    • DAVIS J BEAM III
    • 28/03/2018

    Why did it end at Cherkassy?

    It was a great audiobook, but why did it end at Cherkassy? I wanted to hear the story until the end. I guess that I will have to buy the book

    6 personnes ont trouvé cela utile

    • Global
      4 out of 5 stars
    • Interprétation
      5 out of 5 stars
    • Histoire
      4 out of 5 stars
    Image de profile pour theinglebaby23
    • theinglebaby23
    • 10/10/2018

    Pretty good

    Good story, but not a lot of specific details about combat. There’s plenty, but not told in a way that really brings it out (like some more notable memoirs do).

    But definitely a good listen - you hear an honest thoughts and experiences of a non-German volunteer in the SS. Something you don’t get very often anywhere else - including the history books.

    1 personne a trouvé cela utile

    • Global
      4 out of 5 stars
    • Interprétation
      5 out of 5 stars
    • Histoire
      4 out of 5 stars
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    • Paul B.
    • 16/09/2020

    Good if incomplete experiences.

    Interesting account of someone who thought they were protecting Europe from communism and even 40 years later doesn’t seem to realize he was committing treason against his own country or supporting a brutal anti Semitic and cruel dictatorship. His experiences are well described and interesting. I just wish he had discussed how he justified his support of Hitler, who he never mentions. Incredibly he tried to join either the French or Belgium army just before France fell! One wonders if he had, how would he have felt about Nazis and Hitler. Still worth listening to. I would like to her an interview with the author where he would be asked about his politics etc.

    • Global
      5 out of 5 stars
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      5 out of 5 stars
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    • Anonymous
    • 22/07/2020

    Really good book!

    Very good and very well written! A must read for history buffs! A very good glimpse into the life of a WWII soldier on the eastern front before and after the war!

    • Global
      5 out of 5 stars
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      5 out of 5 stars
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      5 out of 5 stars
    Image de profile pour 1SG Milo, US Army, (Ret.)
    • 1SG Milo, US Army, (Ret.)
    • 19/01/2020

    Simply a good story

    This story is of Dutch men who fought for the Germans against the Soviets. They were mot Nazis but boys seeking adventure. In hindsight it all seems so foolish, yet they stuck it out. Nothing is more honorable then doing one's duty not for some ideal but for a comrade.

    • Global
      5 out of 5 stars
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      5 out of 5 stars
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      5 out of 5 stars
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    • Ben
    • 01/09/2019

    very enjoyable

    I really enjoyed this unique memoir written from his non German perspective.
    I also enjoyed the many personal observations and descriptions.
    enjoy...