SOCIAL SCIENCES

Hitler's American Friends: The Third Reich's Supporters in the United States

Thomas Dunne: St. Martin's. Oct. 2018. 304p. notes. bibliog. index. ISBN 9781250148957. $28.99; ebk. ISBN 9781250148964. HIST
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Hart (media, communications & journalism, California State Univ., Fresno; George Pitt-Rivers and the Nazis) shines new light on the extent of U.S. pro-Nazi backing during the 1930s until the attack on Pearl Harbor in 1941. Extensive archival research shows that in addition to German-American cultural organizations, the Nazis had outspoken and influential support among the religious right, business, academia, isolationists, and members of Congress. A German spy network in the United States was broken up with help from British intelligence, in spite of J. Edgar Hoover's preference for finding Communists. Hart convincingly shows that these Nazi supporters had the potential to sway public opinion to their way of thinking but were often stopped by their own hubris, greed, violence and some brave journalists and civic officials who helped unmask their views. An intriguing afterword explores what happened to these individuals and corporations during and after the war.
VERDICT Readers interested in the history of Depression-era politics and social climate, or those curious about the dissemination of religious and racial prejudice will appreciate this book.

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