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Kenneth Ellman reviews Hitler’s First Victims by Timothy W. Ryback, A Snapshot Into the Human Mind, November 13, 2016

Kenneth Ellman reviews Hitler’s First Victims by Timothy W. Ryback, A Snapshot Into the Human Mind, November 13, 2016
From Kenneth Ellman, Box 18, Newton, New Jersey 07860. Email: , November 13, 2016

Sometimes, you may sit back and wonder how it came to be that human beings kill, torture and murder each other with such regularity. However, when an entire people or nation, rises up and attacks and destroys their fellow human beings, including helpless children, handicapped and other defenseless persons, an additional question may arise in our minds.
That question is: ”Where was our Law?” If you try to answer this question, it is a haunting of what it means to have a human mind.

It is a good question to ask since from far back in our human history, going back before the Romans of Italy, and the Greeks of Athens, “Law” existed wherever there was a Civilization or Community. The Old Testament, the Torah of the Jews, was itself a Law Book, as much as a revelation. When “Law” fails, we may further wonder: “What takes its place?” Perhaps this well documented presentation of a searing snapshot into just such a question and modern reality provides an answer we will not like but must accept. After reading this book it is a reminder that when the “Law” fails, nothing, absolutely nothing, takes it place.

SO we have here in this concise one volume 273 page account a detailed factual demonstration of the Criminal Justice System of Germany in 1932/1933, conducting an extraordinary Criminal Investigation of the torture and murder of German citizens/prisoners in the Dachau Concentration Camp. At this point the Government and Law of Germany was in transition but not yet in the full and complete control of the new Nazi Government. Here you can see those steps and moments before the “Law” ceased to exist and the moment when there was Law no more .

As the Law is a human activity, there are always individual human beings, making decisions, interacting with each other and acting upon what they see, do and believe. Here two men tend to stand out as their Official acts, in course of their Official duties, is well documented and preserved from that time in Germany. Josef Hartinger, holding Office as Deputy Prosecutor in the Munich II District of Bavaria, who was previously awarded an Iron Cross in World War 1 and Dr. Moritz Flamm, the Munich II District Medical Examiner both received reports of deaths in Dachau. Together they investigated and sought Prosecution for that torture and murder. These two extraordinary men with others, worked together in what to us today would be a completely normal and expected activity of a Criminal Justice process seeking Truth, Justice, Law and accountability.
However in the Germany of Nazi control, then confronting the Law of Germany, Hartinger and Flamm would answer our question of “When Law Fails, What Takes its Place”. The clarity shown by this modern stark reminder gives reality to the words of Sir Thomas Moore many centuries before. Nothing takes its place.

This book details the utterly amazing dedication of this small group of men to the Law then in effect in Germany and to which they were sworn to uphold and enforce. At that time in Germany, the transition to Nazi control not yet having been completed, the truth finding function of the Law can be seen striping away the criminality of the Nazi Government. Then, in a moment, the Law ceases to exist. The historical record revealed by this book and the documentation upon which it is based must be taught in our schools so it can be seen and believed and so men like Hartinger and Flamm can inspire. Kenneth Ellman, Box 18, Newton, New Jersey 07860. Email: