How one of Hitler's soldiers saved the Lubavitcher Rebbe By Bryan Mark Rigg (284 Pages)Publisher: Yale University Press, 2004
When Hitler invaded Warsaw in the fall of 1939, hundreds of thousands of civilians - many of them Jewish - were trapped in the besieged city. The Rebbe Joseph Schneersohn, the leader of the ultra-Orthodox Lubavitcher Jews, was among them. Followers throughout the world were filled with anguish, unable to confirm whether he was alive or dead. Working with officials in the United States government, a group of American Jews initiated what would ultimately become one of the strangest - and most miraculous - rescues of World War II." The escape of Rebbe Schneersohn from Warsaw has been the subject of speculation for decades. Historian Bryan Mark Rigg has now uncovered the true story of the rescue, which was propelled by a secret collaboration between American officials and leaders of German military intelligence. Amid the fog of war, a small group of dedicated German soldiers located the Rebbe and protected him from suspicious Nazis as they fled the city together. During the course of the mission, the Rebbe learned the shocking truth about the leader of the rescue operation, the decorated Wehrmacht soldier Ernst Bloch: he was himself half Jewish, and a victim of the rising tide of German anti-semitism.