Despite its brevity (125 pages), this ""Concise History"" has managed to be considerably more than a parade of names and dates. The author has isolated, developed, and communicated clearly a number of the basic processes underlying the events. Mr. Grosser feels that the occupation period of 1945-49 ""probably did more to shape the face of Germany today"" than did either the twelve years of Nazi rule or the fourteen years of the Weimar Republic, thus providing West (and East) Germany with ""a built-in stake in the growing international tension as a reinforcement of its own position."" Personalities as such are given minimum attention, but political leaders and possible eventual leaders are carefully described, as are the roles of unions, churches, newspapers and other potential social forces. The author may be taken to task for some snap judgments (for instance, Der Spiegel is termed ""expertly treacherous""), but his opinions in areas of first importance are thoughtfully put. An overview of that ""paradoxical political reality,"" postwar Germany.