Hitler’s favorite Jew: The strange case of Dr. Eduard Bloch

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SOME FOOTNOTES OF HISTORY are just that: random scraps of trivia that may well form part of the historical record but are of no real interest to anyone besides genuine buffs. Who was Napoleon’s podiatrist? Who cares? That is why it might at first sound like groping at the very bottom of the historical bag of tricks to write a book about Hitler’s family doctor. Unless, of course, that doctor happened to be a Jew whose remarkable life story has revealed a previously unknown side of the Austrian dictator’s character.

In fact, there has never been any mystery about Dr. Eduard Bloch. He was repeatedly interviewed by the Office of Strategic Services or OSS after his arrival in the US in 1940 and also published an autobiography in Collier’s Weekly in 1941. This information has been out there for generations, but so far no one has dared touch it. Austrian historian Brigitte Hamann has finally gone ahead and tackled the good doctor’s tale head on. Hamann, who is best known outside her home country for her 1999 book Hitler’s Vienna: A Dictator’s Apprenticeship, published her biography of Bloch in Germany in 2008. It has not yet appeared in the United States, but when it finally comes out we had all better be prepared to face what comes next…



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