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Justice, Not Vengeance [Hardcover]

Simon Wiesenthal


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Book Description

Oct. 23 1989
Since the end of World War II Wiesenthal has dedicated his life to bringing Nazis to justice. In this book he describes his activities, the men, such as Eichmann and Mengele, he has pursued, the Nazi escape organization, Odessa, but also some of the heroism that the horrors produced. The book asks questions about the function of punishment and the possibility of rehabilitation in such extreme cases of criminality. He shows that many of the most sadistic persecutors of the Nazi regime found it all too easy to merge into normal society and assume a cloak of decency. Wiesenthal's aim has been to expose to the fullest possible extent the hypocritical sham of this normalization which, he believes, incubates the anti-semitism of which the Nazi regime was the most barbaric manifestation.
--This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 400 pages
  • Publisher: Weidenfeld & Nicolson (Oct. 23 1989)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0297796836
  • ISBN-13: 978-0297796831
  • Product Dimensions: 23.4 x 16.5 x 3.6 cm
  • Shipping Weight: 794 g
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #1,421,696 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Product Description

From Publishers Weekly

At 80, renowned Nazi-hunter Wiesenthal recalls his escapes from death in concentration camps where his family perished, and his career tracking down war criminals. The shattering account, as riveting as a spy yarn, concerns his ruthless global pursuit of hundreds of murderers and collaborators, including Adolf Eichmann, Joseph Mengele and the SS officer who arrested Anne Frank. Wiesenthal's guilt at having survived the Holocaust inspires thoughts about individual vs. collective guilt, forgiveness, expiation and other moral issues. The author expresses alarm over continuing anti-Semitism worldwide and the Neo-Nazis' denial of the Holocaust, and fears that the young's ignorance of the Jewish genocide could allow a recurrence. Photos not seen by PW.
Copyright 1990 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

From Library Journal

Acclaimed Nazi-hunter Wiesenthal, now 80, recounts his life's work of bringing Nazi criminals to justice. His memoirs include chilling, representative cases pursued over the decades. He describes the painstaking detective work involved in establishing the identities of former Nazis and his dogged determination to ferret them out while working within the legal system. He shares his frustrations when legal authorities ignored his evidence, or refused to extradite. Embroiled in numerous controversies, Weisenthal vigorously defends his positions. In one surprising essay he staunchly defends the Poles. Haunted by his survival from the Nazi death camps, Wiesenthal has felt compelled to bear witness in order to perpetuate the memory of the victims. His obsession and zeal have won him worldwide admirers, so the book has a built-in readership.-- Carol R. Glatt, Northeastern Hosp . of Philadelphia correction: Edgehill Publications has in formed us that the prices given for Billy Car ter's Billy, reviewed in the December 1 is sue, were tentative. The set prices are $17.95 for the hardcover, and $8.95 for the paperbound.
Copyright 1990 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

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Amazon.com: 5.0 out of 5 stars  2 reviews
4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Just Crusade Nov. 23 2010
By Mike B - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback
A most passionate and moving account of the pursuit of Nazi war criminals.

What is most commendable is that Weisenthal was after legal justice, never after arbitrary punishment. Summary justice inevitably happened in all occupied countries after the war - but this is not the aim of Weisenthal.

It was truly a team effort as well as a prolonged attempt to locate these murderers. Many had changed identities and were dispersed in several Arab countries (which actively protected them) and in North and South America. It is interesting how a fair number chose suicide just prior to being apprehended or after capture and trial. The trials also helped to disseminate the true scope of Nazi cruelty during World War II to the public arena.

Many of the victims came to Weisenthal several years after the war when the trace of the perpetrator(s) had vanished. To Weisenthal's credit he broadens the scope of the Holocaust to point out that Gypsies, Poles and several other groups were the victims of Nazism.

Perhaps the book loses some resonance in the later stages when Weisenthal explains some of the persecutions he faced from Austrian politicians in the post war era.

One wonders if any of the Nazi criminals ever acknowledged the bestiality of what they did? The interview with Kurt Waldhiem is particularly instructive regarding this.
4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars "JUSTICE NOT VENGEANCE" July 12 2010
By Scamp Lumm - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
Simon Wiesenthal had a desk that never ceased to have an impossible stack of papers upon it. He is known for all of the Nazi murderers and other terrorists he tracked down, but we don't know the number of all of the murderers who were never apprehended. I am sure the number is staggering and probably the papers on his desk do not have a complete list of the perpetrators.

What's amazing to me is how people would help these thugs escape. After the war, it became clear, largely from Simon Wiesenthal's work, that people from inside the Vatican helped Nazi's escape and settle mostly in South America, mostly in impossible outposts like Uruguay or Paraguay-OOOOOO.

The Nazi's had a game they loved to play inside the walls of the concentration camps. It was a camp rule that inmates would be shot if they tried to climb the electrified fence. Some days they would charge the prisoners to touch the fence or otherwise they'd be shot. You were proverbially damned if you did and damned if you didn't and of course dead in the end. The strangest thing to me, but not too surprising, is how so many of the Nazi camp commandants were nice people, good church going people who would never do the things they were purported to do. It's all so incomprehensible to me, but the stories Simon Wiesenthal tells have been corroborated by many others. PLEASE READ.

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