Alone Against Hitler: Kurt Von Schuschnigg's Fight to Save Austria from the Nazis (Hardcover)
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Alone Against Hitler tells the lesser-known but pivotal story of former Austrian chancellor Kurt von Schuschnigg. As one of the first leaders to defy Adolf Hitler during the buildup to WWII, his story is of lasting importance. Though young and untested upon entering office, von Schuschnigg courageously rejected the rising tide of Austrian Nazism, insisting on equal rights and respect for the Jewish minority. Jack Bray surveys the geopolitical conditions in Austria during the march to war, highlighting von Schuschnigg's valiant four-year struggle to prevent his nearly defenseless small nation from being taken over from within by unrelenting, violent Austrian Nazis. Von Schuschnigg's encounters with Hitler and other central characters of 1930s Germany (Himmler, Hess, Ribbentrop, Hindenburg, Goring, and Papen, as well as their ally, Mussolini) are recounted in scenes of high drama and vivid detail. For his daring defiance, and his refusal of offers to flee the Nazi invasion, von Schuschnigg paid a dear price--seven years in Nazi captivity and abuse to the point of breakdown. In one of Hitler's final acts from the bunker where he would ultimately take his own life, the trembling fuhrer ordered von Schuschnigg to be killed. Just as von Schuschnigg was set to be executed, with the war at its eleventh hour, he received a near-miraculous deliverance. Although Kurt von Schuschnigg's name may be unfamiliar now, he was for a brief moment at the center of world history, even gracing the cover of Time magazine in 1938. Alone Against Hitler profiles an oft-forgotten but crucially important figure in WWII history, celebrating the legacy of a man who bravely fought against evil.
About the Author
Jack Bray was for many years a senior partner at the international law firm King & Spalding, and is now senior counsel there. Dubbed "Gentleman John" by Washingtonian magazine, Bray was regularly included in its annual list of Washington's 30 best lawyers. After law school at Saint Louis University, where he was first in his class and law review editor, he was named to Attorney General Robert Kennedy's Honors Program and served as a Justice Department trial lawyer. He taught law at Saint Louis University and Georgetown University.