Jill Hutchinson's Reviews > The Devil's Disciples: Hitler's Inner Circle

The Devil's Disciples by Anthony Read
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Sep 12, 09

bookshelves: biography, wwi-wwii
Read in September, 2009

This 900+ page book delves into the machinations of the Third Reich's most dangerous men, the four acolytes of Hitler and their mad grasp for power. It is not so much a history of the war but more an insight into what the usual history books don't tell us regarding the in-fighting and paranoia of Himmler, Goring, Goebbles, and Ribbentrop. Based on letters, meeting minutes and the testimony of Goring at the Nuremburg Trials, it is a magnificent telling of how these men rose to power and fought to keep it.
The author gives more attention to Goring.........this may be because he is the only one (besides Ribbentrop, who was negligible at the trials) who made it to Nuremburg. His testimony, however horrific, held the court in thrall and the author utilizes it to advantage. (Of course, Goring cheated the hangman by his own hand.)He is presented a little more sympathetically than the remaining three and in fact, may have been much more intelligent than the image he presented to the world.. This is not to say that he wasn't evil....he was... but Goebbles was an insecure madman, Himmler was a psychotic with no scruples, and Ribbentrop was shallow,vain, and stupid. This inner circle shaped the "Thousand Year Reich" for 12 years and left their county in ruin and desperation. This book is a must read for all who are interested in an inside look at what made these men initiate and carry out unbelievable crimes against humanity.


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