Circles of Resistance: Jewish, Leftist, and Youth Dissidence in Nazi Germany, by John M. Cox. New York: Peter Lang, 2009. 200 pp. $72.95. On 18 May 1942, Nazi Berlin saw a rare act of violent resistance: "Soviet Paradise," an exhibition staged in Berlin's central Lustgarten square, was firebombed, causing minor damage to some of the exhibits. More surprising, though, was the identity of those responsible: young Jewish leftists, led by Herbert Baum. In a curious twist to the case, a few days earlier, Baum and two associates, masquerading as members of the criminal police (Kripo), had robbed an elderly, wealthy Jewish couple in Charlottenburg to finance their attack. Although the actions of Baum and his co-conspirators are well documented in the literature of Nazi resistance, John Cox argues that their motivations and workings are not. While Baum chose to bomb "Soviet Paradise" primarily because it portrayed the Soviet Union in a very negative light, some of his co-conspirators were motivated by the exhibition's antisemitic content: it explicitly linked Bolshevism with Judaism (p. 126). Cox uses the attack as a window into the diffuse leftist Jewish resistance milieu in wartime Berlin. But the very subtitle of the book, Jewish,
Shofar: An Interdisciplinary Journal of Jewish Studies – Purdue University Press
Published: Jun 1, 2011
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