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Campaign in Russia, by Leon Degrelle

Discussion in 'Book Reviews' started by ColHessler, Sep 26, 2017.

  1. ColHessler

    ColHessler Member

    Dec 5, 2010
    Likes Received:
    Length: 353 pages, including glossary and footnotes

    Before everyone has an aneurysm, no I'm not a fan of Degrelle. I know he was an unrepentant apologist, and that's not me. I've just been curious about his story and finally got to read it.

    Now, having said that, he had an Old World, old school style of writing, which was rather florid sometimes. This was when he talked about the terrain and towns they fought near and the "noble" dead. But, he did have the gritty details as well, like how the enemy and friendly dead looked.

    He did talk about his unit's progress from Ukraine and the Donets River, to Kharkov in 1942, and their campaign, attached to the German 97th Division, going to the Caucasus range, and how close they came to the Black Sea shore before being pulled back. I know after that the Walloon Legion was transferred to the Waffen-SS, but he doesn't mention the handover.
    He does give great detail about the Cherkassy Pocket and his unit's part in holding the shoulder so the Germans could escape.

    Degrelle goes on to describe the Estonian battles in 1944, and the most bittersweet for him and his men, the Ardennes, where they were behind the front, and then the Pomerania battles, and his escape to Norway, followed by his flight to Spain.

    He also talks about his meeting with Hitler where Hitler tells him, if he had a son, he'd want him to be like Degrelle. Degrelle was really starstruck by that.

    The biggest flaw is his one sidedness. He describes the German women being killed by Russian planes, and gets so weepy. "Oh those barbarians." It was his German friends that did it first, but he ignores that.

    I'm glad I got this crossed off my reading list.
    Last edited: Sep 27, 2017
    lwd likes this.

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