Crossing Hitler: The Man Who Put the Nazis on the Witness by Benjamin Carter Hett

By Benjamin Carter Hett

In the course of a 1931 trial of 4 Nazi stormtroopers, referred to as the Eden Dance Palace trial, Hans Litten grilled Hitler in a super and cruel three-hour cross-examination, forcing him into a number of contradictions and evasions and at last decreasing him to helpless and humiliating rage (the transcription of Hitler's complete testimony is included.) on the time, Hitler used to be nonetheless attempting to end up his embody of criminal equipment, and distancing himself from his stormtroopers. The brave Litten printed his real intentions, and within the approach, posed a true danger to Nazi ambition. whilst the Nazis seized strength years after the trial, family and friends instructed Litten to escape the rustic. He stayed and used to be despatched to the focus camps, the place he labored on translations of medieval German poetry, shared the money and meals he used to be despatched via his filthy rich kin, and taught working-class inmates approximately artwork and literature. whilst Jewish prisoners at Dachau have been locked of their barracks for weeks at a time, Litten saved them sane by way of reciting nice works from reminiscence. After 5 years of torture and tough labor-and a bold break out that failed-Litten gave up desire of survival. His tale used to be finally tragic yet, as Benjamin Hett writes during this gripping narrative, it's also redemptive. "It is a narrative of human the Aristocracy within the face of barbarism." the 1st full-length biography of Litten, the ebook additionally explores the turbulent years of the Weimar Republic and the phobia of Nazi rule in Germany after 1933. [in sidebar] Winner of the 2007 Fraenkel Prize for remarkable paintings of latest heritage, in manuscript. To be released through the international.

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Extra resources for Crossing Hitler: The Man Who Put the Nazis on the Witness Stand

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Litten was remarkably generous to his rival. On one occasion Reuter left Berlin in despair, seemingly over Sulamith’s connection to Litten. Litten sent him money to come back. Another Litten pattern was mixing work with friendship and romance. Reuter began working regularly for the artistically innovative and politically radical Workers’ Illustrated News (AIZ), and Litten often gave him tips about events or people who might be worthy of a photographer’s attention. In 1931 Reuter managed to infiltrate the infamous Berlin squad of Nazi storm troopers, ‘‘Storm 33,’’ which by then had become Litten’s particular target and was based in Charlottenburg, where Reuter had grown up.

53 Litten’s attachment to Judaism, taken together with his mother’s conspicuous evasiveness about his Jewish heritage, has led to controversy. ’’ Sabatzky did not seek to answer his own question, but in fact the answer was clear enough. Irmgard Litten’s memoir of Hans, A Mother Fights Hitler, was published in Great Britain during the Second World War. 54 At the same time, as the recollections of Kurt Hiller and Alfred Dreifuss show, Litten’s attachment to Christianity was every bit as real as his commitment to Judaism.

Only Fritz Litten’s influence kept Hans in school. 19 Fritz Litten had no time for the arts. ’’ He had no respect for the intellectual abilities of his two younger sons and did not care what they did for a living. As far as he was concerned, they could devote themselves to ‘‘breadless art,’’ and they did. Heinz studied law but wrote a doctoral dissertation on ‘‘The Modification of a Theatrical Work through Performance’’ and went on to become a theater director. 20 With Hans it was different. On him rested Fritz’s hopes of founding a dynasty of distinguished jurists.

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