Setting the record straight

Jonathan Kirsch sets out to provide the first biography of Herschel Grynszpan, who committed an important act, but to whom history has been so unjust

April 4, 2013 15:29
Jonathan Kirsch

Jonathan Kirsch521. (photo credit: Courtesy)


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In May 1942, at the height of the Second World War, Adolf Hitler sent his foreign minister a note inquiring into the life of one of the many millions of prisoners in the Third Reich. Joachim von Ribbentrop recalled that he asked “whether he thought the time was right to undertake the Grynszpan trial.” After a short consultation with the Nazi propaganda minister, Ribbentrop replied in the negative.

Instead, the prisoner was transferred to Magdeburg. “No official document of the Third Reich discloses his fate,” writes Jonathan Kirsch in his new biographical work, The Short, Strange Life of Herschel Grynszpan: A Boy Avenger, a Nazi Diplomat, and a Murder in Paris.


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