Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
“[A] gripping look at a historical counternarrative that remains relevant and disturbing.” — Kirkus Reviews
“Superb.” — Publishers Weekly
The first definitive account of the anti-Nazi underground in Germany
“A riveting narrative of the organization, conspiracy, and sacrifices made by those who led the resistance against Hitler. Orbach deftly analyzes the mixed motives, moral ambiguities and organizational vulnerability that marked their work, while reminding us forcefully of their essential bravery and rightness. And he challenges us to ask whether we would have summoned the same courage.” — Charles S. Maier, professor of history, Harvard University, and author of Among Empires
In 1933, Adolf Hitler became chancellor of Germany. A year later, all political parties but the Nazis had been outlawed, freedom of the press was but a memory, and Hitler’s dominance seemed complete. Yet over the next few years, an unlikely cadre of conspirators emerged—schoolteachers, politicians, theologians, even a carpenter—who would try repeatedly to end the Führer’s genocidal reign. This dramatic account is history at its most suspenseful, revealing the full story of those noble, ingenious, and doomed efforts.
Orbach’s fresh research offers profound new insight into the conspirators’ methods, motivations, fears, and hopes. We’ve had no idea until now how close they came—several times—to succeeding. The Plots Against Hitler fundamentally alters our view of World War II and sheds bright—even redemptive—light on its darkest days.
About the Author
A veteran of Israeli intelligence, Dr. DANNY ORBACH earned a B.A. in history and East Asian studies from Tel Aviv University, and a Ph.D. in history from Harvard University. He is a senior lecturer for history and East Asian studies in the Hebrew University of Jerusalem. As a historian, commentator, and political blogger, he has published extensively on German, Japanese, Chinese, Israeli, and Middle Eastern history, with a special focus on military resistance, disobedience, rebellions, and political assassinations.
“In this comprehensive history, Israeli historian Orbach scrupulously analyzes the resistance movements that opposed the Nazis from 1933 to 1945. His superb research includes interviews with resistance survivors, family members, and relevant records from archives around the world. It is a balanced history of the resistance that covers the famous Operation Valkyrie plot, but gives equal treatment to the other serious attempts to resist the Nazis and assassinate Hitler. For many readers the extent of the resistance efforts of Admiral Canaris (head of German Military Intelligence), among others, will be surprising. This book is unique in that Orbach attempts to determine the motivation of the resisters in moral and ethical terms. He explains that most historians have either idolized the resisters as heroes or condemned them as self-serving criminals. Orbach sets the record straight when he concludes that the resisters to Hitler’s Nazi government were imperfect but in most cases exceptional human beings who reacted with action to the criminal deeds of the Nazis. Likely to become the definitive general history of the subject and the starting place for all future research, Orbach’s work is a fascinating story of courage and an excellent study of the struggle of individuals to act morally and honorably.” —Publishers Weekly
“This fresh look at the German Resistance will be appreciated by students of World War II history.” —Library Journal
“A robust history of the German conspiracy against Nazism . . . [A] gripping look at a historical counternarrative that remains relevant and disturbing.” —KirkusReviews