Written by Vladimir Moss



     As the Second World War came to an end, writes Professor Richard J. Evans, “millions of former Nazis hid or burned their uniforms, and in the final days of the war, the Gestapo set fire to incriminating records all over the country. Many of the most fanatical Nazis did not survive: they either perished in the final conflagration or killed themselves, along with Hitler, Joseph Goebbels, Heinrich Himmler, and many others, in one of the greatest waves of mass suicide in history, unable to imagine anything beyond the all-encompassing world of the Third Reich, the only thing that gave their lives purpose and meaning. 

     “In stark contrast to the countries the Nazis had conquered during the war, Germany saw no resistance to the Allied occupation. As wartime gravestones frequently testified, many Germans had fought and died ‘for Führer and Fatherland’. But with the führer gone and the fatherland under enemy occupation, there seemed no point in fighting on. German cities had been reduced to rubble, and millions of Germans had died; as a result, everyone could see what Nazism had ultimately led to. The Allied occupation was vigilant and comprehensive, and it quickly suppressed even the slightest act of resistance. The Allies put in place an elaborate program of ‘denazification’, war crimes trials, and ‘reeducation’ measures that targeted not only former Nazi activists and fellow travelers but also the militaristic beliefs and values that the Allies believed had allowed the Hitler regime gain support and come to power in the first place. In 1947, to symbolize this forced reinvention of German political culture, the Allied Control Council, which governed Germany at the time, formally abolished the state of Prussia, which ‘from early days had been a bearer of militarism and reaction in Germany’, the council claimed. 

     “Germans by and large wanted to focus on the gigantic task of rebuilding and reconstruction and to forget the Nazi past and the crimes in which, to a greater or lesser extent, the vast majority of them had been involved. The year 1945, many of them declared, was ‘zero hour’ – time for a fresh start. However, politicians and intellectuals also reached back to older values in their quest to construct a new Germany… 

     “Yet post-war German efforts to forge a new identity could not just leap across the Third Reich as if it had not existed. Germans ultimately had to confront what the Hitler regime had done in their name. The process of doing so was halting and complicated by the country’s division during the Cold War…

     “There was a limit, as well, to what the Allies could achieve in encouraging or forcing the Germans to come to terms with what they had done. West Germans, the vast majority of the formerly united country’s population, seemed to suffer from a generalized historical and moral amnesia in the postwar years; on the rare occasions when they spoke about the Nazi dictatorship, it was usually to insist that they had known nothing of its crimes and to complain that they had been unfairly victimized and humiliated by the denazification programs and the ‘victors’ justice’ of the war crimes trials. Many still seethed with anger at the Allies’ carpet-bombing of German towns and resented the expulsion of 11 million ethnic Germans by the postwar governments of Hungary, Poland, Romania, and other eastern European countries. An opinion poll carried out in West Germany in 1949 revealed that half the population considered Nazism to be ‘a good idea, badly carried out’. In the East, the country’s new Stalinist leaders wanted the public to identify with the memory of the communist resistance to Nazism, which had been real enough, but which the authorities massively exaggerated. As a result, East Germans were not really forced to face up to their involvement in the crimes of Nazism at all.

     “In the 1960s, however, things began to change”[1] as prosperity returned...


     The general condition of Europe after 1945 was anarchy… In France, many Vichy collaborators were murdered, and women who had slept with Nazis were humiliated. The bitter debate over who was responsible for France’s defeat and – with the honourable exception of De Gaulle’s Free French – collaboration with Germany, continued for many years.

     But the changes were greater further east. “With the exception of Germany,” writes Tony Judt, “and the heartland of the Soviet Union, every continental European state involved in World War Two was occupied at least twice: first by its enemies, then by the armies of liberation. Some countries – Poland, the Baltic states, Greece, Yugoslavia – were occupied three times in five years. With each succeeding invasion the previous regime was destroyed, its authority dismantled, its elites reduced. The result in some places was a clean slate, with all the old hierarchies discredited and their representatives compromised. In Greece, for example, the pre-war dictator Metaxakas had swept aside the old parliamentary class. The Germans removed Metaxakas. Then the Germans too were pushed out in their turn, and those who had collaborated with them stood vulnerable and disgraced. 

     “The liquidation of old social and economic elites was perhaps the most dramatic change. The Nazis’ extermination of Europe’s Jews was not only devastating in its own right. It had significant social consequences for those many towns and cities of central Europe where Jews had constituted the local professional class: doctors, lawyers, businessmen, professors. Later, often in the very same towns, another important part of the bourgeoisie – the Germans – was also removed, as we have seen. The outcome was a radical transformation of the social landscape – and an opportunity for Poles, Ukrainians, Slovaks, Hungarians and others to move up into the jobs (and homes) of the departed.

     “This leveling process, whereby the native populations of central and eastern Europe took the place of the banished minorities, was Hitler’s most enduring contribution to European social history. The German plan had been to destroy the Jews and the educated local intelligentsia in Poland and the western Soviet Union, reduce the rest of the Slav peoples to neo-serfdom and place the land and the government in the hands of resettled Germans. But with the arrival of the Red Army and the expulsion of the Germans the new situation proved uniquely well adapted to the more truly radicalizing projects of the Soviets.

     “One reason for this was that the occupation years had seen not just rapid and bloodily enforced upward social mobility but also the utter collapse of law and the habits of life in a legal state. It is misleading to think of the German occupation of continental Europe as a time of pacification and order under the eye of an omniscient and ubiquitous power. Even in Poland, the most comprehensively policed and repressed of all the occupied territories, society continued to function in defiance of the new rulers: the Poles constituted for themselves a parallel underground world of newspapers, schools, cultural activities, welfare services, economic change and even an army – all of them forbidden by the Germans and carried on outside the law and at great personal risk.

     “But that was precisely the point. To live normally in occupied Europe meant breaking the law: in the first place the laws of the occupiers (curfews, travel regulations, race laws, etc.) but also conventional laws and norms as well. Most common people who did not have access to farm produce were obliged, for example, to resort to the black market or illegal barter just to feed their families. Theft – whether from the state, from a fellow citizen or from a looted Jewish store – was so widespread that in the eyes of many people it ceased to be a crime. Indeed, with gendarmes, policemen and local mayors representing and serving the occupier, and with the occupying forces themselves practicing organized criminality at the expense of selected civilian populations, common felonies were transmuted into acts of resistance (albeit often in post-liberation retrospect). 

     “Above all, violence became part of daily life. The ultimate authority of the modern state has always rested in extremis on its monopoly of violence and its willingness to deploy force if necessary. But in occupied Europe authority was a function of force alone, deployed without inhibition. Curiously enough, it was precisely in these circumstances that the state lost its monopoly of violence. Partisan groups and armies competed for a legitimacy determined by their capacity to enforce their will in a given territory. This was obviously true in the most remote regions of Greece, Montenegro and the eastern marches of Poland where the authority of modern states had never been very firm. But by the end of World War Two it also applied in parts of France and Italy.

     “Violence bred cynicism. As occupying forces, both Nazis and Soviets precipitated a war of all against all. They discouraged not just allegiance to the defunct authority of the previous regime or state, but any sense of civility or bond between individuals, and on the whole they were successful. If the ruling power behaved brutally and lawlessly to your neighbour – because he was a Jew, or a member of an educated elite or ethnic minority – then why should you show any more respect for him yourself? Indeed, it was often prudent to go further and curry pre-emptive favour with the authorities by getting your neighbour in trouble.”[2]

     “The Ukraine,” writes Niall Ferguson, “was perhaps the most blood-soaked place of all. In Volhynia and Eastern Galicia, members of the Organization of Ukrainian Nationalists (OUN), egged on by the Germans, massacred between 60,000 and 80,000 Poles. Whole villages were wiped out, men beaten to death, women raped and mutilated, babies bayoneted… The internecine war in the Ukraine only grew more ferocious as the war progressed, with some Ukrainians fighting for the Axis, some for the Allies and others for an independent Ukraine.

     “In the Balkans, too, there were multiple civil wars along ethnic, religious and ideological lines… Of the million or so people who died in Yugoslavia during the war, most were killed by other Yugoslavs. This included nearly all of Bosnia’s 14,000 Jews. In Greece the German occupation was the cue for bitter conflict. There, as in Yugoslavia, a three-cornered war raged – between the foreign invaders and nationalists, but also between nationalists and indigenous Communists. When Bulgaria annexed northern Dobruja from Romania, tens of thousands of people were expelled from their homes on either side of the new border.

     “Most empires purport to bring peace and order. They may divide in order to rule, but they generally rule in pusuit of stability. The Nazi empire divided the peoples of Europe as it ruled them – though, ironically, the divisions that opened up in Central and Eastern Europe had as much to do with religion as with race (most obviously in the conflicts between Poles and Ukrainians or between Croats and Serbs). But the ‘skiful utilization of inter-ethnic rivalry’ the Germans consciously practiced did not lead (in the words of one German officr) to the ‘total political and economic pacification’ of occupied territory. On the contrary, in many places their rule soon degenerated into little more than the sponsorship of local feuds, the institutionalization of civil war as a mode of governance…”[3]

     “At the conclusion of the First World War, it was borders that were invented and adjusted, while people were on the whole left in peace. After 1945 what happened was rather the opposite: with one major exception [Poland] boundaries stayed broadly intact and people were moved instead. There was a feeling among Western policymakers that the League of Nations, and the minority clauses in the Versailles Treaties, had failed and that it would be a mistake even to try and resurrect them. For this reason they acquiesced readily enough in the population transfers.”[4] Thus in its Article XIII the Potsdam Conference authorized the transfer of vast numbers of Germans from Czechoslovakia, Hungary and Poland (which, while losing its eastern provinces to the Soviets, took over the former German provinces of Pomerania, Silesia and East Prussia). This “ethnic cleansing” extended even further east – 700,000 Germans, for example, were expelled from Romania. It was accompanied by mass murder, torture and rape. As Victor Sebestyen writes: “The Germans were not wanted anywhere outside Germany. Vast populations had been forced to uproot in the biggest refugee crisis the world had ever seen. Hitler had dreamed of an ethnically pure Europe. Paradoxically, Germany’s defeat ensured that by the end of 1946 his dream was, to a great extent, a reality…”[5]

    In all, some 12 million ethnic Germans were expelled and forced to travel back to their homeland, suffering half a million lost lives as starvation, disease and revenge attacks took their toll. Again, between 6 and 8 million former prisoners of war and slave labourers from the Nazi camps and factories were released to roam the German countryside, looting and taking revenge on civilians. At the same time in the East, hundreds of thousands took to the forests in the Baltic States to resist their “liberation” by the Red Army; tens of thousands died. Losses were still greater further south, as Ukrainian “Banderites” fought the Soviets and Poles fought Ukrainians[6]; there were large transfers of population in both directions across the Polish-Ukrainian border. In Belorussia an anti-Soviet resistance movement lasted from 1944 to 1956.[7] In Yugoslavia Serbs massacred Croats in retaliation for the hundreds of thousands they had lost at the hands of the Ustashi in the war. In Greece, British soldiers and Greek monarchists killed communists and vice-versa. In many countries of Western Europe, especially Italy and France, collaborators were murdered, imprisoned or simply humiliated.[8]

     Nor did survivors of the Holocaust, in spite of their terrible experiences during the war, feel much safer at the end of it. Much of Eastern Europe had been virulently anti-semitic in the 1930s, and the same disease broke out now in pogroms such as that in Kielce in Poland in July, 1946. There was a particular new motive for this fresh outburst: the property of the Jews had been appropriated by new Gentile owners, who did not want to give it up. So Jews had to flee again. Ironically, many of them fled to the land of their former persecutors, Germany (63,387 between July and September, 1946[9]); others – to Palestine…

     As Sebestyen writes, “Millions of Hungarians, Poles and Romanians had benefited from the Holocaust – an entirely new middle class had been created in just a few years. State direction of the economy in Eastern Europe did not begin with Soviet-style post-war communism; it had happened under the authoritarian regimes in the 1930s, and was given a boost by the Nazis. The popular Polish magazine Odrozdenie noticed ‘an entire social stratum – the new-born Polish bourgeoisie – which took the place of murdered Jews, often literally, and because it smelled blood on its hands, it hated Jews more strongly than ever.’ The returning Jews were resented by the majority. People cursed their luck that of all the Jews who had ‘disappeared’ during the war, their Jews had to be the ones who came back…”[10]

     Some of the continuing conflicts in post-war Europe had an ideological character, such as the Greek civil war between the monarchists and the communists. Others were “wars of liberation” from the new totalitarian conquerors, the Red Army, mixed with nationalist motives, as in the Baltic states and Ukraine. But most of them were simply wars of vengeance against those who had collaborated, or the continuation of pre-war racial tensions. 

     Thus Sebestyen describes the Czech vengeance on the Germans, supervised by their impeccably democratic and civilized President Edvard Beneš:- “In the two years after the war Beneš expelled more than two and a half million Germans from Czechoslovakia, often with no notice of any kind. Nor did he seem to care how many died in the process. He expropriated the property of the ethnic ‘Sudeten’ Germans, the majority of whom were from families who had lived in Czechoslovakia for generations. It was payback – not only for the barbaric Nazi years, but also because they had been of the ruling caste before independence in 1918. In 1943, while still in exile, Beneš had issued a chilling decree: ‘We have decided to eliminate the German problem in our republic once and for all. The entire German nation deserves the limitless contempt of all mankind. Woe, woe, thrice woe to the Germans. We will liquidate you.’

     “Later, back home in Prague, he called not only for a ‘definitive clearance of the Germans from our country, but also a clearance of German influence.’ At no point did the Allied powers express any disapproval. Churchill’s Cabinet accepted the expulsions as ‘inevitable… even desirable’, and in December, 1944 the Prime Minister told the House of Commons, ‘Expulsion is the method which as far as we have been able to tell will be the most satisfactory and lasting. A clean sweep will be made. I am not alarmed at the prospect of the disentanglement of the people, nor am I alarmed by these large transfers.’ Stalin encouraged Beneš, telling him, ‘This time the Germans will be destroyed so that they can never again attack the Slavs.’”[11]

     The Western Allies did little to extinguish this flame of war that erupted over much of Western and Central Europe. They had too little sympathy for the mainly German victims, and were too occupied in providing minimal living conditions for those living in their zones of occupation and “denazifying” them. For food was scarce, especially in the British zone of occupation; rations in Britain itself had to be reduced in order to keep the Germans from starving.[12]

     In the Soviet zone of occupation the East Germans had more food. But that was their only advantage. In Eastern Prussia, Pomerania and Silesia, 1.4 million German women had been raped by Soviet soldiers, most of them several times[13], and most industrial plant was transported eastwards by the Red Army, together with luxury goods destined for the Soviet generals and millions of soldiers and former prisoners of war destined for the Gulag.

     American diplomat George Kennan wrote that “the disaster which befell this area with the entry of the Soviet forces has no parallel in modern European experience. There were considerable sections of it where, to judge by all existing evidence, scarcely a man, woman or child of the indigenous population was left alive after the initial passage of Soviet forces… The Russians… swept the native population clean in a manner that had no parallel since the days of the Asiatic hordes.”[14]

     Judt continues: “The situation in the newly liberated states of western Europe, then, was bad enough. But in central Europe, in the words of John McCloy of the US Control Commission in Germany, there was ‘complete economic, social and political collapse… the extent of which is unparalleled in history, unless one goes back to the collapse of the Roman Empire.’[15] McCloy was speaking especially of Germany, where the Allied Military Commission had to build everything from scratch: laws, order, services, communications, administration. But at least they had resources. In the east, things were worse…

     “Thus it was Hitler, at least as much as Stalin, who drove a wedge into the continent and divided it. The history of central Europe – of the lands of the German and Habsburg Empires, the northern parts of the old Ottoman Empire and even the westernmost territories of the Russian Czars – had always been different in degree from that of the nation states of the West. But it had not necessarily differed in kind. Before 1939 Hungarians, Romanians, Czechs, Poles, Croats and Balts might look enviously upon the more fortunate inhabitants of France or the Low Countries. But they saw no reason not to aspire to similar prosperity and stability in their own right. Romanians dreamed of Paris. The Czech economy in 1937 outperformed its Austrian neighbour and was competitive with Belgium.

     “The war changed everything. East of the Elbe, the Soviets and their local representatives inherited a sub-continent where a radical break with the past had already taken place. What was not utterly discredited was irretrievably damaged. Exiled governments from Oslo, Brussels or The Hague could return from London and hope to take up the legitimate authority they had been forced to relinquish in 1940.[16] But the old rulers of Bucharest and Sofia, Warsaw, Budapest and even Prague had no future: their world had been swept aside by the Nazis’ transformative violence. It remained only to decide the political shape of the new order that must now replace the unrecoverable past…”[17]     

     In his book Black Earth: The Holocaust as History and Warning, Timothy Snyder argues that the Holocaust took place, not so much because an evil state organized it, but because very many of the Jews who were killed were in effect stateless, and “one could do what one wanted with stateless people”. So the real destroyer was not states but the absence of statehood, anarchy. Whatever the merits of this thesis with regard to the Holocaust[18] , it certainly has merit in relation to the immediate post-war years in Europe, when the main fact for very many was simply anarchy, the destruction of all signposts from the past, all institutions, ideals and morality.

     Moreover, this is equally applicable to the whole catastrophic period from the First World War to the death of Stalin (1914-53), with its vast Jewish and Gentile (especially Orthodox Christian) Holocausts covering most of Central and Eastern Europe. These were the results of the fall of the last multi-national empires of the Habsburgs and the Romanovs, which held back the tide of anarchy, but were then swept away by the anti-states of Hitler and Stalin, together with many millions of their former subjects…

     It all points back to the first cause of the miseries of the twentieth century: the Russian revolution. Vladimir Putin called the fall of the Soviet Union in 1991 “the greatest geopolitical tragedy of the twentieth century”. But only one who knows no history, or who secretly or not so secretly believes in communism could believe such a thing… 

     Certainly, most European intellectuals of the time seemed to have learned nothing from history; the real nature of the Soviet regime was hidden from them…

     Thus the Soviet Union is usually described as “totalitarian” – the same term that Mussolini had applied to his own regime in the 1920s. As Anne Applebaum writes, it was “Hannah Arendt, who defined totalitarianism in her 1949 book, The Origins of Totalitarianism, as a ‘novel form of government’ made possible by the onset of modernity. The destruction of traditional societies and ways of life had, she argued, created the conditions for the evolution of the ‘totalitarian personality’, men and women whose identities were entirely dependent on the state. Famously, Arendt argued that Nazi Germany and the Soviet Union were both totalitarian regimes, and as such were more similar than different. Carl J. Friedrich and Zbigniew Brzezinski pushed that argument further in Totalitarian Dictatorship and Autocracy, published in 1946, and also sought a more operational definition. Totalitarian regimes, they declared, all had at least five things in common: a dominant ideology, a single ruling party, a secret police force prepared to use terror, a monopoly on information and a planned economy. By those criteria, the Soviet and Nazi regimes were not the only totalitarian states. Others – Mao’s China, for example – qualified too.”[19]

     Now the application of the term “totalitarian” to the Soviet Union pointed – correctly – to the close kinship between Communism and Fascism. But this kinship was vehemently denied by most Western European intellectuals, which were pro-communist – or at any rate, anti-fascist and therefore, in the twisted logic of the time, necessarily anti-anti-communist. This was especially the case in France, whose communist party was second in size only to Italy’s, and where the beginning of the shameful Stalinist show-trials elicited only the denial of obvious facts and frantic defence of the totalitarian dictator. This pro-communism went with a despising of all things American, in spite of the fact that the Americans had liberated France and France’s survival as an independent country depended entirely on them.

     As Judt writes, “Communism excited intellectuals in a way that neither Hitler nor (especially) liberal democracy could hope to match. Communism was exotic in locale and heroic in scale. Raymond Aron in 1950 remarked upon ‘the ludicrous surprise – that the European Left has taken a pyramid-builder for its God.’ But was it really so surprising? Jean-Paul Sartre, for one, was most attracted to the Communists at precisely the moment when the ‘pyramid-builder’ was embarking upon his final, crazed projects. The idea that the Soviet was engaged upon a momentous quest whose very ambition justified and excused its shortcomings was uniquely attractive to rationalist intellectuals. The besetting sin of Fascism had been its parochial objectives. But Communism was directed towards impeccably universal and transcendent goals. Its crimes were excused by many non-Communist observers as the cost, so to speak, of doing business with History.

     “But even so, in the early years of the Cold War there were many in Western Europe who might have been more openly critical of Stalin, of the Soviet Union and of their local Communists had they not been inhibited by the fear of giving aid and comfort to their political opponents. This, too, was a legacy of ‘anti-Fascism’, the insistence that there were ‘no enemies on the Left’ (a rule to which Stalin himself, it must be said, paid little attention). As the progressive Abbé Boulier explained to François Fejto, when trying to prevent him from writing about the Rajk trial: drawing attention to Communist sins is ‘to play the imperialists’ game’.

     “This fear of serving anti-Soviet interests was not new. But by the early fifties it was a major calculation in European intellectual debates, above all in France. Even after the East European show trials finally led Emmanuel Mounier and many in his Esprit group to distance themselves from the French Communist Party, they took special care to deny any suggestion that they had become ‘anti-Communist’ – or worse, that they had ceased to be ‘anti-American’. Anti-anti-Communism was becoming a political and cultural end in itself…”[20]


February 5/18, 2020.

[1] Evans, The Third Reich at War, London: Penguin Books, 2009. ,

[2] Judt, Postwar: A History of Europe since 1945, London: Pimlico, 2007, pp. 36-37. Cf. Anne Applebaum, Iron Curtain: The Crushing of Eastern Europe, London: Penguin, 2013, pp. 13-17.

[3] Ferguson, The War of the World, London: Penguin, 2006, pp. 455, 456-457.

[4] Judt, op. cit., p. 27.

[5] Sebestyen, 1946: The Making of the Modern World, London: Pan, 2014, p. 140.

[6] In view of the massive propaganda directed by the modern Russian media against the “Banderites”, it is worth heeding the words of Professor Andrei Zubov: “This was a national liberation movement, an anti-communist one.

     “Stepan Andreyevich Bandera was born and lived in that part of the Ukraine which was part of Poland before 1939. And he saw all the Soviet horrors from peaceful and wealthy (by comparison with Soviet Ukraine) Galicia. He saw how, during the Great Ukrainian Famine [golodomor], people who were dying from hunger hurled themselves across the frontier onto Polish territory, how they were shot by Soviet border-guards. And for that he hated Soviet power.

     “Any nationalism is a terrible thing, especially with weapons in its hands. But Bandera was a hundred times less cruel than the NKVD of Beria and Abakumov when they fought against the Banderites.

     “Therefore any attempt to liberate them from this state was already an element of justice. And in this sense the Banderite movement was more justified from the point of view of morality than the Stalinist Soviet state.”(“Banderovtsy – eto primer bol’shoj lzhi sovietskoj sistemy” (The Banderites are an example of the big lie of the Soviet system), Nash Dom, January 8, 2016, http://www.nashdom.us/home/public/publikatsii/banderovtsy---eto-primer-bolshoj-lzhi-sovetskoj-sistemy)

[7] Erich Hartmann, “Antisovietskoe partizanskoe dvizhenie Belarusi v 1944-1956g.”, http://www.erich-hartmann.com/antisovetskoe-partizanskoe-dvizhenie.

[8] Keith Lowe, “The War Without An End”, BBC History Magazine, July-August, 2015, pp. 50-55.

[9] Judt, op. cit., p. 24.

[10] Sebastyen, op. cit., p. 287.

[11] Sebestyen, op. cit., pp. 129-130.

[12] Judt writes: “The British were extracting at most $29 million in reparations from Germany; but the occupation was costing London $80 million a year, leaving the British taxpayer to foot the bill for the difference even as the British government was forced to impose bread rationing at home (an expedient that had been avoided throughout the war). In the opinion of the British Chancellor of the Exchequer, Hugh Dalton, the British were ‘paying reparations to the Germans’” (op. cit., p. 123).

[13] Evans, op. cit., pp. 710-711. Ferguson has a higher estimate of rapes: two million German women. “This should be compared with the 925 sentences for rape passed by US Army court martials in all theatres of war between 1942 and 1946” (op. cit., p. 581).

[14] Kennan, in Judt, op. cit., p. 19.

[15] In reality, it was probably much worse than in antiquity.

[16]However, the Prime Minister of Norway from 1945-49 and 1955-65, Einar Gerhardson, was a KGB agent.He was the first western leader to visit the Soviet Union after the war. “Norvegi v shoke: ‘otets natsii’, 15 let vozglavliaiuschij kabinet, byl agentom KGB” (Norwegians in shock: ‘the father of the nation’, who led the cabinet for 15 years, was an agent of the KGB),December 25, 2015, 9, http://9tv.co.il/news/2015/12/25/219244.html.

[17] Judt, op. cit., pp. 39-40.

[18] In favour of Snyder’s thesis is Victor Sebestyen, “The brutal mask of anarchy”, The Spectator, 12 September, 2015, p. 47. Against it is Michael Pinto-Duschinsky, “Hitler’s ‘ecological panic’ didn’t cause the Holocaust”, Standpoint, September, 2015, pp. 44-49.

[19] Applebaum, Iron Curtain, London: Penguin, 2013, pp. xxiii-xxiv.

[20] Judt, op. cit., pp. 216-217.

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