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Review
Pen & Sword: The Germans in Normandy
CMOT
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ARMORAMA
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England - South West, United Kingdom
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Posted: Wednesday, September 04, 2019 - 06:55 AM UTC


Fay Baker takes a look at a recent Pen and Sword release titled ''The Germans in Normandy'', a book that tells the story of the D-Day landings in the words of the Germans that faced it.

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If you have comments or questions please post them here.

Thanks!
Taeuss
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Posted: Wednesday, September 04, 2019 - 02:45 PM UTC
Not the first time that this point of view approach has been done but it still is an interesting perspective for anyone who really wants to understand the dynamics of those battles that raged on the Western front in the summer of 1944 until the end of the conflict in May 1945. Illuminating.
marcb
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Posted: Thursday, September 05, 2019 - 04:09 AM UTC
Hargreaves is not a serious historian.
See this link.
https://www.tapatalk.com/groups/missinglynx/viewtopic.php?f=47207&t=319431&p=1557063&hilit=hargreaves#p1557063
CMOT
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ARMORAMA
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Posted: Thursday, September 05, 2019 - 07:44 AM UTC



Sorry Marc having read this book I don't see the complaints holding water as they are the words of the people who were there.
RECON22
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Posted: Friday, September 06, 2019 - 02:44 AM UTC
Tanks Darren, I will certainly read this one, though will be hard to beat: D DAY Through German Eyes - The Hidden Story of June 6th 1944 by Holger Eckhertz.
marcb
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Posted: Friday, September 06, 2019 - 09:05 AM UTC
The Eckhertz book is just as bad.

https://www.tapatalk.com/groups/missinglynx/books-on-bunkers-pillboxes-t58216-s10.html#p1514692

https://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-7017619/Amazons-D-Day-bestseller-HOAX-Historians-claim-German-Eyes-book-fabrication.html
CMOT
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Posted: Friday, September 06, 2019 - 09:26 AM UTC
Marc it is a newspapers job to sell newspapers not to provide you with the truth. I enjoyed the book and found the content thought provoking, but I cannot prove its accuracy or truthfulness. What I can say is that it reads right in its presentation.
RECON22
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Posted: Saturday, September 07, 2019 - 12:27 AM UTC



I guess we will never know Marc...Robert Kershaw, who wrote the D-Day book Landing on the Edge of Eternity, said there was enough accuracies in Eckhertz's work to convince him.

'It would have taken a lot of effort to make it up because there is sufficient accuracy in the small parts I looked at to warrant inclusion,' he told The Times.
Hohenstaufen
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Posted: Tuesday, September 10, 2019 - 10:08 PM UTC
For a good read you could always go back to the original; Paul Carell's "Invasion: They're Coming!". I bought my paperback copy as a teenager back in the '70s. Don't know how that will compare with modern writing standards!
marcb
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Posted: Wednesday, September 11, 2019 - 11:27 AM UTC
The Times ran the same article the Daily Mail did.

The popularity of history books is no indication of their accuracy. Fe books like Panzer Aces, by Franz Kurowski and the books by Paul Carrel are mostly revisionist and apologist write ups.


Some usefull links are:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Franz_Kurowski

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Paul_Carell

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Myth_of_the_clean_Wehrmacht

The HIAG was a post war organisation of former Waffen SS members, who tried to shape the image of the Waffen SS, post war.
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/HIAG

Hope that helps.
Jpz4-1944
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Posted: Friday, September 20, 2019 - 02:23 AM UTC
Oh dearů

The Eckhertz books are fake, plain and simple. The Times article already explains why the story behind the book is fake (non existing publisher in German, non-existing veterans, non-existing author, non-existing translator, etc). This should already be enough, but for those still unconvinced there are countless other problems to be found within this war porn.

I've not read the books in full because, frankly, they are poorly written and so obviously fake I couldn't be bothered.
I'm disgusted to see how this is being sold as history! What worries me most is the reason for writing it. It has a 'Der Landser' revisionist ring to it. Message: "those poor brave Germans in their, supposed, pan-European struggle against communism and capitalism did not get a fair chance". I wouldn't touch these stories with a ten foot pole.

The interview approach is clearly designed to be able to provide (fake) answers that are filled with details. Details that are supposed to increase credibility but in fact show it is all fake. There is too much information. Some is clearly postwar. Other stuff sounds clever but are commonly known facts or accessible to any enthousiast without trouble. There is also plenty of stuff that would not have to be explained to a war reporter at all. But for an uninformed reader that might be another matter......
Other information would simply not have been known by the average soldier and certainly not to that level of detail. The vocabulary is very suspect to. Words as 'Hanomag' (instead of SPW), FAMO, 'Panzerschreck' (instead of Ofenrohr) and Wehrmacht (instead of Heer) are just a few examples. The use of mm instead of cm is very un-German too. Everything screams post-war enthousiast who started learning about this stuff long after the war and may know a lot of technical stuff (with the wrong terminology) but fails to understand the actual fighting.

The books are clever in keeping away from stuff that is really specific but can be checked by experts. As such it avoids names of officers, men, companies, places, etc. There are however clear mistakes such as units that were not in a certain area at a given date.
To give some examples: SS troops, 'Hanomags' and StuGs around Utah Beach on D-Day. False, false and false. And that's just the first chapter.

There is also waaaaay too much gore in the books. People don't volunteer such details and certainly not to the level of dwelling on it. Go talk to some veterans, you'll see. It's all done to increase the drama of the book.

IIRC there are also a number of other glaring errors, which show the information was not provided in the first ten years or so after the war. I'm thinking of the time De Gaulle became president and the importance of North African oil during WW2...

The fact some authors think these books are 'credible enough' means nothing. It only shows they are not the experts they pretend to be. If they argue they were able to check some of the information it means someone else could look it up as well and insert it into a story... It is never about the easy stuff, it is about the small detailed stuff that requires more knowledge and a better understanding. But hey, let's be kind and say the authors were simply caught unprepared by the scam these books are and, in their enthusiasm of finding something new, failed to properly evaluate them. Oops.

Anyway, if you still think the Eckhertz books are credible I'd suggest rereading them while keeping these remarks in the back of your head. Trust me, the books get worse every time you read them. Thank god for that. A credible fake would be even worse.
________________
Hargreaves' book is not new BTW. It's only been republished. It has it's flaws but it is not fake. For those interested there are some comments about his work in this thread, which also addresses some other recent books: https://forum.axishistory.com/viewtopic.php?f=54&t=242804