OTHER LOSSES by James Bacque

OTHER LOSSES

The Shocking Truth Behind the Mass Deaths of Disarmed German Soldiers and Civilians Under General Eisenhower's Command
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KIRKUS REVIEW

 Canadian writer Bacque's shocking and controversial account of American mistreatment of four million German WW II POWs. Centering on American idol Dwight D. Eisenhower, Bacque's indictment strikes to the heart of the American dream, charging us with much the same kind of brutality that so incenses Americans when practiced by foreigners--allowing POWs to die by the tens of thousands from disease and starvation. In a skillfully organized, meticulously documented brief (86 pages of notes and appendices), Bacque charges Eisenhower not with neglect but with setting policy- -and charges subsequent authorities with a methodical cover-up, including destruction of evidence. The narrative is strongly detailed, beginning with an old Frenchman, accompanied by Bacque, opening an ancient, dusty box to find--nothing: missing evidence. From there we have a real-life thriller, complete with security forces bullying aged witnesses. Surprises are nonstop, beginning with a damning introduction by respected military historian Ernest F. Fisher, Jr., who speaks of Eisenhower's ``fierce and obsessive hatred of...all things German.'' There follows a jolting indictment of high American figures, starting at the top. The tone is set when Churchill walks out of a Big Three meeting as Roosevelt jokes with Stalin (recent perpetrator of the notorious Katyn Forest massacre) about exterminating prisoners. The point is driven home a thousand ways, most effectively in the knowledgeable analysis of Eisenhower's management style, which allowed subordinates to carry out policy with little paper to back them up. The general who sends military aircraft to pick up oranges for breakfast while prisoners are starving is especially memorable. Even more so is the repeated British refusal to countenance the US policy in principle and detail. Explosive and deeply iconoclastic, this book is sure to enrage many. Refutations without research as painstaking as Bacque's will lack credence.

Pub Date: July 1st, 1991
ISBN: 1-55958-099-2
Page count: 250pp
Review Posted Online:
Kirkus Reviews Issue: May 15th, 1991