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Too Fantastic to Be True
The Failure of the Jewish Rescuers at the Onset of the Holocaust
by Raul Hilberg
In the terrible history of the Jewish catastrophe in Europe at the hands of the Nazis, one of the most perplexing questions remains, Why could not more Jews have been saved? This question in turn gives rise to two others: Why were the Jews so submissive to their fate? And why didn’t others come to their rescue? It is the dilemma of their rescuers that the distinguished Holocaust historian Raul Hilberg confronts in this often agonizing appraisal. Hilberg is concerned with the major Jewish organizations in Europe and the United States that, despite continuing information about the plight of the Jews as Hitler continued his march across Europe, either failed to act or failed to persuade governments to act. Even when the “final solution” became apparent, some leading Jewish figures remained unconvinced of the depth of the crisis. Reports were too staggering, too unbelievable to be wholeheartedly accepted.
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