The focal point of the German resistance movement during the period 1933-1945 is undoubtedly the 1944 attempt on Hitler's life. That fiasco, however, as Professor Deutsch points out, was but the culmination of several previous conspiracies, and it is the most important of those foregoing plots -- that of September 1939-May 1940 (the ""phony war"") undertaken by members of the Abwehr --that is the subject of this book. The plot grew out of two factors: Hitler's unpleasant relations with the Officer Corps, and the conviction by the Army that Hitler's policies were leading Germany to disaster. Its purpose was the overthrow of the Nazi regime and the replacement of Hitler by a chief of state through whom it would be possible to negotiate a peace with England and France. The conspiracy was unusual in that it had the support of the English government, and also because Pius XII had agreed to act as intermediary between Germany and the Allies. The author traces the origins, progress, and eventual failure of the plot by means of exhaustive interviews with participants and witnesses and by the examination of hitherto unavailable French and Belgian documents, as well as by use of the usual sources. This is the first complete treatment of that episode, and Professor Deutsch has done a creditable job of in-depth reporting. Even though many readers may disagree with the author with respect to the extent and intensity (and particularly with respect to the motives) of the anti-Nazi opposition, they will find the book an enlightening treatment of an interesting tangent in the rise and fall of the Third Reich.