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Download Soldiers and Slaves: American POWs Trapped by the Nazis' Final Gamble Audiobook

Extended Audio Sample Soldiers and Slaves: American POWs Trapped by the Nazis Final Gamble, by Roger Cohen Click for printable size audiobook cover
3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 3.00 (50 ratings) (rate this audio book) Author: Roger Cohen Narrator: Sam Tsoutsouvas Publisher: Penguin Random House Format: Abridged Audiobook Delivery: Instant Download Audio Length: Release Date:
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In February of 1945, 350 American POWs, selected because they were Jews, thought to resemble Jews or simply by malicious caprice, were transported by cattle car to Berga, a concentration camp in eastern Germany. Here, the soldiers were worked to death, starved and brutalized; more than twenty percent died from this horrific treatment.

This is one of the last untold stories of World War II, and Roger Cohen re-creates it in all its blistering detail. Ground down by the crumbling Nazi war machine, the men prayed for salvation from the Allied troops, yet even after their liberation, their story was nearly forgotten. There was no aggressive prosecution of the commandants of the camp and the POWs received no particular recognition for their sacrifices. Cohen tells their story at last, in a stirring tale of bravery and depredation that is essential for any reader of World War II history.

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Quotes & Awards

  • Roger Cohen has brought us a jewel of a book–a chilling, deeply felt, and powerfully written account of an astonishing episode at the climax of World War II that speaks volumes about human nature, justice, and memory. Michael Beschloss
  • Roger Cohen, who has already written one profoundly moving book on the Bosnian war and provides some of the best American journalism about Europe, understands that huge tragedies are constituted by microhistories of suffering. In Soldiers and Slaves he follows the fate of Jewish American soldiers, captured in the Battle of the Bulge and thrown into the vortex of the crumbling Third Reich as brutalized slave laborers and death-march victims alongside the remnants of surviving Central European Jewery. This is a beautifully crafted narrative of cruelty, heroism, dismaying postwar indifference, and finally, at last, memory redeemed. Charles Maier, Saltonstall Professor of History, Harvard University
  • Before reading Soldiers and Slaves, I had never heard of concentration camp Berga, ‘an ephemeral little hell’ within the larger hell of World War II. But I know it now and won’t ever forget it, thanks to Roger Cohen’s masterful account, wonderfully reported and written. Ward Just
  • This story of American POWs at Berga–their suffering, their pain, their hope, their memories–has surprisingly been forgotten or inadequately recalled by historians. Roger Cohen is to be thanked for revealing to the public its profound human drama with talent, sensitivity, and a commitment to truth. Elie Wiesel
  • In this extraordinary book Roger Cohen has brought to light a long-concealed story of Nazi savagery. It brought me to tears–and understanding. Anthony Lewis

Listener Opinions

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 by Jeffrey | 10/10/2013

    " Story of American pows put into forced labor and forced to work in a concentration camp. A good read. Historically educational. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 by Victoria | 4/9/2013

    " As i read this book, it made me cry. The horror of the Holocaust is overwhelming. I keep thinking how can people be this cruel? "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 by Jenny J | 2/19/2013

    " A devastating account of a little-known concentration/work camp in Germany where 350 American soldiers were sent in February 1945. My heart goes out to the veterans who live every day with memories of this terrible time. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 by Jenny | 8/24/2012

    " What can I say? I read a lot of WWII history materials. "

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