The Capture of Attu: A World War II Battle as Told by the Men Who Fought There

Robert J. Mitchell - 2000
     Attu was the westernmost island in the Aleutian chain, located one thousand miles from Alaska, and subject to brutal weather all year round. Prior to the war it had been home to two Americans and forty-five Aleut hunters and their families, but in June 1942 the Japanese had seized the island and now had over two-thousand troops on the barren island threatening the security of the U.S. mainland. The Battle of the Komandorski Islands in the Bering Sea on March 26, 1943, cleared the way for attempt to retake the island of Attu. Code-named Operation Landgrab, the U.S. military planned for the invasion to take place in May. Army planners had initially thought this would be a quick operation, but instead of being a short invasion it dragged on for over two weeks. The Japanese had realized that their options were limited and so launched a last-ditch banzai charge against the American frontline that was suffering from brutal Arctic conditions, equipment failures and food shortages. Although the U.S. military was able to recapture the island it had cost the lives of over five hundred American soldiers. Robert J. Mitchell, Sewell T. Tyng and Nelson Drummond’s book The Capture of Attu provides fascinating insight into this ferocious conflict. Part One of the book provides an overview of the military campaign while Part Two provides personal narratives of the soldiers who fought. This book attempts to put the reader on the battlefield with the ground soldier. Men who fought on Attu, officers and enlisted men, told their stories to Lieutenant Robert J. Mitchell of the 32d Infantry, one of the regiments engaged. These stories tell of the discomforts and perils, the failures and successes, the fear and courage, the many fights between small groups and the occasional humor, of which battle consists. Robert J. Mitchell served as a lieutenant in the US Army's 7th Infantry Division in World War II, being stationed on Attu Island off of Alaska as well as other areas of the Pacific. He was shot in the chest while on Attu and carried the bullet for the rest of his life. While recuperating, he wrote the stories of the other men in his hospital tent. For this he was made an aide to the general in charge of media for the rest of the war. He passed away in 1992. His co-authors Sewell T. Tyng and Nelson Drummond also served on Attu and passed away in 1946 and 1999 respectively. Their book The Capture of Attu was first published in 1944.

Here My Home Once Stood: A Holocaust Memoir

Moyshe Rekhtman - 2008
    But his iron will and quick wit allowed him to survive when all seemed lost. Staging escapes from death camps and avoiding Nazi pursuit through the frozen Ukrainian countryside-all while facing the loss of his family, famine, constant threat of capture, torture, and execution - would be a monumental task for the strongest of men. Despite his mild manners, emaciated body, and poor vision, he evaded the death squads in Nazi-occupied Ukraine for four years. Moyshe's Holocaust memoir is a remarkable example of human fortitude during a time when many welcomed an end to their suffering.

Waiting for a Miracle: Historical Novel

Helen (Wininger) Livnat - 2018
     It begins somewhere in Russia in the mid-19th century, and takes the reader into the events during the two world wars, and their ways of existence during the holocaust. The simple and touching stories are presented from the perspective of a sensitive young boy, fascinated by his surroundings. In a moment of anxiety and fear, the boy is torn from his family, and the journey of his life begins. The story describes four generations that represent the history of Eastern European Jews. The author creates a unique attraction between the book and the reader, by her fluent and vivid language. Historical truths are intertwined with fascinating stories about the power of a violin, and the miracles that occurred during the attempt to survive under impossible conditions in a period where sanity was lost. “People will forget what I said, people will forget what I did, people will never forget what I made them feel.”

Gerda's Story: Memoirs of a Holocaust Survivor

Gerda Nothmann Luner - 2019
    Told through the eyes of a young girl, the book shares Gerda’s memories of Hitler’s rise to power and passionately describes the cruel toll that history can have on those who experience it. The book is much more than Gerda’s story. Through letters she received from her parents, who made the heartbreaking decision to send their two daughters to live with foster families in the relative safety of Holland, we learn how a mother and father try to raise a child from far away in times of great distress. Letters from them to Gerda’s foster parents, and desperate notes to an American family they hoped would act as sponsors, reveal their growing despair. The story is both deeply personal and universal as people wrestle with terrible choices to save their children and protect their families. These issues remain as relevant today as they were during the Holocaust. In 1939, while trying to arrange an escape from Germany, her parents sent 12-year-old Gerda and her younger sister to live with separate families in Holland, which was still safe for Jews. What was intended as a temporary move became permanent and Gerda never saw her parents again. Ultimately, she was the only member of her immediate family to survive and also had to bear the loss of the foster family she had come to love as her own. Gerda describes in searing detail her experiences in six concentration camps, her protection as a worker for the Philips Corporation, and her arrival in the U.S. in 1948 as an 18-year-old Holocaust survivor literally alone in the world. The memoir is a testament to the loving family Gerda built in America. Her husband added translations of the letters from her parents, grandparents and sister. After her oldest child and first grandchild were born, Gerda added notes to them. This group effort illustrates the special generational pull of trauma endured by Holocaust survivors.

I Will Not Weep in this Place

Angela Berquist - 2010
    Their main goal is survival, but will they survive? It is a question that, in the end, a reader must ask themselves.

Memoirs of a Holocaust Survivor: Icek Kuperberg

Icek Kuperberg - 2000
    Interned in various work and death camps, Icek had to use his guile and wits to simply stay alive. That he persevered despite tremendous horrors and obstacles, testifies to his strong will to survive.

Holocaust Scream

Rachel Rosenberg - 2013
    Learn about her remarkable experience during the Holocaust and its long-term aftereffects. Some of Rachel's struggles within the Nazi SS final solution were similar to the tragic experience of Anne Frank. Both found poignant but fleeting young love. Each had an attic experience and both were chronicler-victims of World War 2. While Anne Frank survives in her diary, Rachel survived and is telling her story. Rachel endured 6 long years in Hitler's death camps. Rachel's remarkable saga didn't end with her liberation at the end of World War 2. Rachel had lost her idyllic community, her strong Jewish spiritual roots, her adolescence and most of her immediate family. So thorough and diabolical was the Nazi Holocaust that Rachel even lost her birthday! Rachel tells us about those terrible personal moments in the camps when Life and Love struggled against Death personified. On one of these struggles with Death, Rachel's Love experienced that scream. That powerful Holocaust Scream is her biggest hurt. You can find out about that scream for yourself. Prepare to cry. Rachel was clever and resourceful. She was able to hide in the camps. How could she do that? You will find out. When the camp gates were finally thrust open, Rachel had to reconnect to all those things that we take for granted. It wasn't easy. Rachel had to take charge in order to get through the post-war turmoil. Rachel became a beacon of help to many in need. Rachel and her husband Carl were interviewed by movie director Steven Spielberg. Some of her concentration camp and ghetto experiences served as background for the movie, "Schindler's List." Learn about Rachel's encounters with Nazis in the United States. Rachel is witty and charming. Her attitude toward her Holocaust experience is truly remarkable. Find out how Rachel feels about the German people. Rachel is an example of the "leading lady" persona. What does it mean to be a "leading lady?" Rachel's story unfolds like a kaleidoscope of images. There is a rhythm to her story, one that defies organization. The rhythm creates a remarkable connection with the reader. You will sense the rhythm as you resonate with it. Get ready. The story includes several dialogues with Rachel. In the dialogues, Rachel tells her story in her own words as much as possible. These dialogues reveal Rachel's keen memory, insight, honesty and vulnerability. Rachel has some advice for those who may be in terrible circumstances. You can meet this remarkable women and follow the gripping tale of her life's struggles. It's time for you to meet Rachel. Come on in.

Children of Terror

Inge Auerbacher - 2009
    These are their unforgettable true stories. "War does not spare the innocent. Two young girls, one a Catholic from Poland, the other a Jew from Germany, were witnesses to the horror of the Nazi occupation and Hitler's terror in Germany. As children they saw their homes and communities destroyed and loved ones killed. They survived deportation, labor camps, concentration camps, starvation, disease and isolation."This is a moving personal account of history. Urbanowicz and Auerbacher's painful pasts and similar experiences should guide us to make correct decisions for the future."Aldona Wos, M.D. Ambassador of the United States of America, Retired, to the Republic of Estonia Daughter of Paul Wos, Flossenburg Concentration Camp, Prisoner Number 23504"Most Holocaust survivors are no longer with us, and that is why this volume is so important. It is a moving testimony by two courageous women, one Catholic and one Jewish, about their youthful ordeals at the hands of the Nazis. They succeed in ways even the most astute historian cannot - they literally capture history and bring it to life. It is sure to touch all those who read it."William A. Donohue President, Catholic League for Religious and Civil Rights"Such an original book, written jointly by both a Jewish survivor and a Polish-Christian survivor of the Holocaust, Children of Terror points the way toward fresh insight, hope and redemption. If "Never again" is to be more than a slogan, tomorrow's adults must be nourished and informed by books such as this. A fabulous piece of work, perfect for the young people who are our future."Rabbi Dr. Hirsch Joseph Simckes, St. John's University, Department of Theology"The authors were born in the same year but into different worlds: one a Polish Catholic and the other a German Jew. Despite their dramatically different traditions and circumstances, they shared a common trauma - the confusion and fear of being a child in wartime. Auerbacher and Urbanowicz vividly describe the saving power of family, place, and tradition. Young readers of Children of Terror will come away with a deeper understanding of the Second World War and a profound admiration for the book's authors."David G. Marwell, Ph.D., Director of the Museum of Jewish Heritage - A Living Memorial to the Holocaust

The Other Schindler... Irena Sendler: Savior of the Holocaust Children

Abhijit Thite - 2009
    This is the incredible true story that combines many facts - together, they form one of history’s most fascinating and at the same time, gruesome eras.Germany’s occupation of Poland during the Second World War set off a chain of events that were unprecedented in their complexities of human behaviour. With the largest Jewish population in Europe, Poland suffered the worst fallout of German atrocities. From containment of Jews in the infamous Warsaw Ghetto to their ultimate annihilation in the extermination camps, World War II forms a sordid tale of discrimination and hate.Against this is the fragrance of hope and kindness. When the world is in peril, deliverance always comes, and so it was that a few people defied the odds to emerge angel in times of distress, beacons of hope amidst the throes of darkness.This is the true account of a woman who was as gentle as she was steely-minded.Irena Sendler, a little lady who saved 2,500 Jewish children from the Warsaw Ghetto is today known all over the world, with thousand of websites dedicated to her. This, though, is the first complete published book of her incredible journey from an inspired young girl to a nonagenarian who spurned all personal glory.

William & Rosalie: A Holocaust Testimony

William Schiff - 2007
    In 1941, newlyweds William and Rosalie Schiff are forcibly separated and sent on their individual odysseys through a surreal maze of hate. Terror in the Krakow ghetto, sadistic SS death games, an experimental rabbit job, eyewitness accounts of cannibalism, and the menace of rape in occupied Poland make William & Rosalie an unusually candid view of the chaos that World War II unleashed on the Jewish people. the Germans occupy western Poland. A year later they marry in the ghetto; by 1942 deportations have wasted both families. After Rosalie is saved by Oskar Schindler, the husband and wife end up at the Plaszow work camp under Amon Goeth, the bestial commandant played by Ralph Fiennes in Schindler's List. ...

Nothing of Importance: A Record of Eight Months at the Front with a Welsh Battalion, October 1915 to June 1916

John Bernard Pye Adams - 1916
     Nothing could have prepared him for the reality he ended up facing. Placing his focus on the day to day existence of the soldiers in the trenches, Adams presents a grim picture of mud-coated billets, relentless artillery barrages, working parties, training and the art of military sniping. Just as it would have been for the soldiers’ lives, Adams heightens his work with an emotive account of his first night patrol, the detonation of mines, battlefield duels and being wounded whilst out wiring in No Man’s Land. Understated and striving for truth over melodrama, Nothing of Importance is the original memoir of the First World War — the only record published while the conflict was still being fought — and the definitive account of trench warfare. Bernard Adams (1890-1917) was a British Army officer, joining 1 Royal Welsh Fusiliers as a Lieutenant in November 1914. He was the first of a triumvirate of authors who, for a time, served simultaneously in the same battalion: the second was Siegfried Sassoon, the third Robert Graves. Written whilst convalescing in 1916, he did not live to see it published.

Unfinished Symphony

Bernard Hellreich Ingram - 2012
    This is not a book about survival in a concentration camp. It is a book about "ordinary" people, maybe like you & me, on the peripheries of the Holocaust. It is a book about an ordinary man who is a young Polish Jewish doctor & it tells of the discrimination he faced leading up to WWII. It tells how his comfortable Polish middle class life is shattered first by the 1939 Soviet invasion showing the real face of the Stalinist regime & then by the Nazis in 1941 who are bent on exterminating a people merely because of their religious background. What to do? I ask myself how I would have reacted & I asked my father how he had the courage to choose to walk the line of a Jew hiding as a Christian. How brave was he? "Not brave at all" was his reply, "I just did what I had to do". It is also the story of two brave Christians, the doctor's girlfriend & a friend of hers, & how they chose to risk their lives & those of their families to prevent the unjust murder of another human being whose only crime was his ethnic background. I ask myself could I now do the same if this situation arose. The book is priced as low as possible to encourage people to read about an amazing account of survival through the love & selflessness of others in a very dark time of man's recent history. Two of the central figures of this book, Marian Golebiowski & Irena Szumska-Ingram have been honored by Jerusalem’s Yad Vashem Holocaust Museum with the Righteous Among the Nations award. See the Yom Ha’atzmaut 2010 speech by Dor Shapira of the Israeli Embassy to the Sydney NSWJBD in relation to Irena Sumska's award: It is a story of love, adventure & human values, the fugitive "Jew in a Christian skin", under constant threat of exposure, precariously maintaining his false identity in a tiny rural community. finally we see Hellreich the penniless refugee, still supported by his faithful Irena, rebuilding his shattered career in Australia - a chapter of heartbreaking difficulties & heartwarming satisfaction. " gripping and human a story as any told about this tragic period in the history of man's inhumanity to man. I couldn't put it down. That it is told without bitterness and rancour makes it all the more powerful ... simply yet eloquently written." - Barry Cohen (former Australian Minister for the Arts, Heritage and the Environment) "... incredible faith and courage ... one of the most amazing stories to emerge from the wreckage and despair of the Holocaust." - L E Freeman in The Newcastle Herald Publisher's Note: My father, the author, passed from this world of natural causes in 2008 after what he described as a very interesting life. My hope in publishing his story is to document what happened to one man during these dark times & let him tell his story to all of you & not let it die with him. My father did not speak of his war years until I was 8, after many requests. It took him a lot longer to agree to write his story for the public. He was a modest man & did not think his story on the Holocaust's edges would be of interest, as per his Preface. All the Holocaust books I have read are valuable not for their literary merit but for the story they tell of barbarism, heroism, selfless help by others while endangering their own lives, & the wonderful strength & purity of th

The Griekwastad Murders: The Crime that Shook South Africa

Jacques Steenkamp - 2014
    It was shortly before 19h00 when Don Steenkamp jumped out of the vehicle and ran into the station’s charge office, covered in blood, to announce that his parents and sister had been brutally shot and killed on the family farm, Naauwhoek. Although the killings were initially thought to be just another farm attack, months later a sixteen-year-old youth was arrested for the murders, setting in motion a chain of events that would grip South Africa, and divide the people of Griekwastad.Based on interviews with all the role-players, including the investigating officers on the case, the forensic and ballistic experts, and family and friends of the deceased, this is the riveting account of what really happened on Naauwhoek farm on that fateful day, as told by the reporter who followed the case from day one…


Alex Miller - 2020
    Miller discovers that he is also searching for a defining part of himself, formed by his relation to Max Blatt, but whose significance will remain obscure until he finds Max, complete, in his history. With Max, Miller the novelist has written a wonderful work of non-fiction, as fine as the best of his novels. Always a truth-seeker, he has rendered himself vulnerable, unprotected by the liberties permitted to fiction. Max is perhaps his most moving book, a poignant expression of piety, true to his mentor's injunction to write with love.' Raimond Gaita, award-winning author of Romulus, My FatherI began to see that whatever I might write about Max, discover about him, piece together with those old shards of memory, it would be his influence on the friendships of the living that would frame his story in the present.According to your 1939 Gestapo file, you adopted the cover names Landau and Maxim. The name your mother and father gave you was Moses. We knew you as Max. You had worked in secret. From an early age you concealed yourself - like the grey box beetle in the final country of your exile, maturing on its journey out of sight beneath the bark of the tree.You risked death every day. And when at last the struggle became hopeless, you escaped the hell and found a haven in China first, and then Australia, where you became one of those refugees who, in their final place of exile, chose not death but silence and obscurity.Alex Miller followed the faint trail of Max Blatt's early life for five years. Max's story unfolded, slowly at first, from the Melbourne Holocaust Centre's records then to Berlin's Federal Archives. From Berlin, Miller travelled to Max's old home town of Wroclaw in Poland. And finally in Israel with Max's niece, Liat Shoham, and her brother Yossi Blatt, at Liat's home in the moshav Shadmot Dvora in the Lower Galilee, the circle of friendship was closed and the mystery of Max's legendary silence was unmasked.Max is an astonishing and moving tribute to friendship, a meditation on memory itself, and a reminder to the reader that history belongs to humanity.'A wonderful book. It is a story that needs to be heard.' Jay Winter, Charles J. Stille Professor of History, Yale University'It is a beautiful and haunting book…There is something sacred about this story, this delicate act of remembrance…There is a slow, elegant circling in the book's storytelling, as if those precious shards are held up to the light and turned to reveal their facets. But there is a compelling journey of discovery too, not so much into the light as into the darkness, into Max's silence. In Max, the reader becomes engaged in a fascinating, visceral wrestling with facts, the power of the imagination and the character of truth…This book so beautifully evokes the power of places in shaping our consciousness and perception.' - Tom Griffiths. Emeritus Professor, ANU

Hanged at Auschwitz: An Extraordinary Memoir of Survival

Sim Kessel - 1972
    Kessel, a member of the French Resistance, was arrested by the SS at age 23. He was tortured, sent to work in mines, and dumped into a series of work and death camps. While he was being hung, the rope miraculously broke, so he was sentenced to be shot. Instead, he fooled his captors by assuming the identity of another prisoner and lived to tell the tale.