Review by Choice Review
Journalist Levin has written several books describing the theft of Jewish property during WW II. The book under review presents the thesis that theft of Jewish property was not a by-product of genocide, but rather a direct motivation for it. Levin focuses on the Warsaw Ghetto to resolve the question of whether the Nazis created the ghettos to deprive Jews of their means of survival in order to bring about their demise. He notes that although Germany's decision to implement the Final Solution in March 1941 was a gradual one and not preplanned, confining Jews in ghettos culminated in the death of more than 100,000 Warsaw Jews. The author agrees with historian Shawl Esh, who dubbed the ghetto stage that preceded the official decision to turn to genocide as the "Period of Indirect Extermination." Levin argues that had Jewish property not been stolen and Jews prevented from earning wages, the Germans could not have brought about the deaths of so many in the Warsaw Ghetto before embarking on a campaign of systematic genocide. ^BSumming Up: Recommended. Upper-division undergraduates and above. J. Fischel emeritus, Millersville University
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