Eisenhower and the German POWs; Facts against Falsehood

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In 1989, a Canadian publisher released a book that has since become the subject of enormous international controversy. James Bacque's Other Losses: An Investigation into the Mass Deaths of German Prisoners of War at the Hands of the French and Americans After World War II asserts that General Dwight D. Eisenhower, as head of the American occupation of Germany in 1945, deliberately starved to death German prisoners of war in staggering numbers. Bacque charges that quite likely up to a million prisoners died, their...
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Overview

In 1989, a Canadian publisher released a book that has since become the subject of enormous international controversy. James Bacque's Other Losses: An Investigation into the Mass Deaths of German Prisoners of War at the Hands of the French and Americans After World War II asserts that General Dwight D. Eisenhower, as head of the American occupation of Germany in 1945, deliberately starved to death German prisoners of war in staggering numbers. Bacque charges that quite likely up to a million prisoners died, their deaths knowingly caused by army officers who had sufficient resources to keep them alive. In 1990, the Eisenhower Center at the University of New Orleans sponsored an international conference to examine Bacque's allegations. Participants included the six historians whose essays, along with those of Stephen E. Ambrose and Gunter Bischof, make up this volume, which systematically dismantles Bacque's argument. Eisenhower and the German POWs demonstrates numerous glaring errors in Bacque's research and conclusions. The authors show that Bacque misinterpreted documents accounting for the disposition of German POWs; neglected important evidence to the contrary of his theories; failed to take account of the acute disruption of Europe's economy and distribution networks; and ignored the competing needs of millions of refugees, displaced persons, and hungry civilians, as well as the deployment of Allied resources to the Pacific, where the war continued unabated. In addition to exposing Bacque's flawed methodology and illogical conclusions, these essays offer an extremely detailed and broad-ranging examination of European conditions immediately after the cessation of hostilities and of the difficult business of administering the newborn peace and the millions of newly disarmed military personnel.
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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
In a 1989 study entitled Other Losses , novelist James Bacque contended that Gen. Eisenhower, commander of the American occupation forces in Germany, starved to death a million German prisoners of war in 1945 as an act of revenge. In 1990 the Eisenhower Center at the University of New Orleans invited historians to a conference to examine these charges; this volume contains essays by eight who attended, including Ambrose and Bischof (the Center's director and associate director, respectively). The conferees concluded that there was widespread mistreatment of German prisoners by Allies in 1945, but that it was not the result of a directive from Eisenhower, although he had expressed his hatred of the Germans throughout the war. The texts published here effectively refute Bacque's arguments and dismiss his book as the work of a sloppy amateur who wrenched material out of context and misquoted eyewitnesses. Illustrations. ( Nov. )
Booknews
Published in 1989, James Bacque's Other Losses: An Investigation into the Mass Deaths of German Prisoners of War at the Hands of the French and Americans After World War II asserts that Eisenhower deliberately starved to death German prisoners of war in staggering numbers. These papers presented at a symposium held November 1990, at the U. of New Orleans, punch holes in Bacque's research and offer a detailed examination of European conditions immediately after the cessation of hostilities. Annotation c. Book News, Inc., Portland, OR (booknews.com)
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Product Details

Table of Contents

Preface
Introduction 1
I The United States and the German POWs
Eisenhower and the Germans 29
The Diplomatic and Political Context of the POW Camps Tragedy 52
A Question of Numbers 78
II Germany in 1945 and German POW Historiography
Food Shortages in Germany and Europe, 1945-1948 95
German Historiography, the War Losses, and the Prisoners of War 127
Some Reflections on the Maschke Commission 170
III Conspiratorial History
A British Variety of Pseudohistory 183
Bacque and Historical Evidence 199
Appendix A Report on the Food Situation in Western Germany, 1945 235
Appendix B Volumes of the Maschke Commission 241
Selected Bibliography 245
Contributors 251
Index 253
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