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In this brilliantly conceived and superbly narrated account, University of Wisconsin professor emeritus of history Hamerow (On the Road to the Wolf's Lair) makes it undeniably clear that anti-Jewish sentiments drastically slowed the response of the United States and other countries to Nazi atrocities when intervention-through diplomacy, loosening of immigration rules and, later, surgical bombing-was entirely possible. Citing opinion surveys from the 1930s and '40s, Hamerow concludes that virtually all Western peoples would have agreed that the world "had to deal with something called the 'Jewish question.' " Looking at the U.S., Canada, Latin America, Britain and France, the author carefully traces the ancient roots and history of anti-Jewish sentiment, describes the powerful xenophobic lobbies in such nations as the United Kingdom and the United States working against unrestrained Jewish immigration and shows how general skepticism in the United States about reports of mass murder also played a role. Hamerow's important book is more than history: it is an indictment and an essential cautionary tale about how easily bigotry combined with complacency facilitates evil. 30 illus. (Aug.)Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.