Issues with Danny S. Parker's Hitler's Warrior Joachim Peiper bio

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Travelswithhermes
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Issues with Danny S. Parker's Hitler's Warrior Joachim Peiper bio

Post by Travelswithhermes » 23 May 2018 21:24

Hello, I am new here. I am an educator and history is my chosen subject. WW2 research is my hobby. I am from the beautiful Southern US. Best regards to all.

I recently during a sick leave for my operation had chance to finish reading Danny S. Parker's extensively researched and quite good book Hitler's Warrior. I also finished a book on Tudor history but this isn't the forum for that haha.

I will say again, the years of painstaking and expensive research are impressive. But some things bothered me about this book. Very often the author goes off onto assuming Peiper's thoughts or feelings , even writing his "thoughts" as fact. Also there is some salacious gossip type rumormongering involving Himmler's mistress Bunny, with Parker trying hard to insist Peiper and she had an affair and perhaps this is why he was sent to Russia! Bits and pieces of sex life gossip but no real basis for it. Actually one would assume there was more sex in these men's lives than Parker covered, but I digress. Also a wavering between seething hatred for his chosen subject and tiny bits of empathy...that was a confusing tone throughout the book. There are not many photos but I didn't buy it for that, some history buffs may be disappointed though.
Don't misunderstand me, it is fine reading and more of an insight into post war Germany and the lives of former Waffen SS than you'll probably ever find. The translated letters alone deserve their own book! I just wish it were more opionless and just facts, as we are all adults and know what evil is and does. The outcome is all around us even now, from all sides. I just wanted to learn more about a complicated historical figure without the author's beliefs getting in the way ( the same problem I had with Antonia Fraser's work). All in all though I will be buying Parker's next book.

Those of you who've read it, did you feel the same? What are your opinions on the book and subject matter? Have other WWII axis figure biographies had these issues for you?

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askropp
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Re: Issues with Danny S. Parker's Hitler's Warrior Joachim Peiper bio

Post by askropp » 23 May 2018 22:53

Hm ... don't you believe this is rather a topic for the book section?
Er ist wieder da. Aber auch dieses Mal wird er nicht siegen!

Travelswithhermes
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Re: Issues with Danny S. Parker's Hitler's Warrior Joachim Peiper bio

Post by Travelswithhermes » 24 May 2018 01:41

askropp wrote:Hm ... don't you believe this is rather a topic for the book section?
I'm a bit near sighted and had trouble even finding this topic haha, let alone the book section. But seeing as it was accepted here by the moderator, I suppose this area is just as appropriate. I mean, it is biographical research reading such a book. Do you have any opinions on the book?

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Re: Issues with Danny S. Parker's Hitler's Warrior Joachim Peiper bio

Post by RWTaylor » 28 May 2018 20:15

I do agree many opinions are posted and many assumptions are made. But I find fascinating are some of the interpersonal assumptions that were made in regards to his wife and children with his perceived yet discussed distance J.Peiper demonstrated. I would also found that he was only 30 or so leading these men who were very young I would’ve assumed that many of them saw him as an older brother and would’ve had more correspondence with him and that they would be more stories of them reaching out to Peiper post war. I know on the block he discussed his adjuncts and others who were close to him but I still think there are many more stories than I would like to of heard that was more personal stories.
Think I need to find a book on Whitman and I also would like to read more about Panzer Meyer

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Re: Issues with Danny S. Parker's Hitler's Warrior Joachim Peiper bio

Post by Sid Guttridge » 29 May 2018 07:42

Hi Guys,

I haven't read the book, but from the initial description it seems to flirt with "Faction". This has long been a curse of some French historical writing and is increasingly infecting US publications. I have one, otherwise quite good, book on the loss of a US "Q" Ship with all hands that includes verbatim conversations between its deceased crew members!

Why cannot writers stick to known facts without allowing themselves to drift into embroidery and fiction? It only undermines the credibility of their work and deceives their readers.

I have a simple rule of thumb - if a book on WWII includes any verbatim conversations between the subjects that were not recorded or taken down by a stenogtrapher at the time, avoid it like the plague. The author is intruding too much on the facts to retain full credibity. A similar proviso applies to books that purport to recount historical actors' private thoughts.

Sid.

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Re: Issues with Danny S. Parker's Hitler's Warrior Joachim Peiper bio

Post by Mori » 29 May 2018 10:29

Sid Guttridge wrote: I have a simple rule of thumb - if a book on WWII includes any verbatim conversations between the subjects that were not recorded or taken down by a stenogtrapher at the time, avoid it like the plague. The author is intruding too much on the facts to retain full credibity. A similar proviso applies to books that purport to recount historical actors' private thoughts.
I fully agree. The invented dialogs are an immediate "no go".

(It's borderline when the source of these dialogs are rememberance of participants. Certainly they did not take notes right away, but they may still_remember the striking messages properly)

Private thoughts are the same, but there is fine line between inventing thoughts and proposing interpretations of decisions. Why did Eisenhower ask Devers to abandon Strasbourg in late December 1944? It may be to shorten the lines and build a reserve; it may also be because he disliked Devers and had some satisfaction in rescinding one of Devers's victories; and maybe both thoughts were intermingled.
[hope this is proper English...]

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Re: Issues with Danny S. Parker's Hitler's Warrior Joachim Peiper bio

Post by seaburn » 29 May 2018 11:26

Travelswithhermes wrote: Very often the author goes off onto assuming Peiper's thoughts or feelings , even writing his "thoughts" as fact
Can you cite examples of this please?

Travelswithhermes
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Re: Issues with Danny S. Parker's Hitler's Warrior Joachim Peiper bio

Post by Travelswithhermes » 29 May 2018 18:31

seaburn wrote:
Travelswithhermes wrote: Very often the author goes off onto assuming Peiper's thoughts or feelings , even writing his "thoughts" as fact
Can you cite examples of this please?
It is quite literally throughout the entire book, but I will leaf through my copy and leave an example here later today.

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Re: Issues with Danny S. Parker's Hitler's Warrior Joachim Peiper bio

Post by Travelswithhermes » 30 May 2018 05:18

seaburn wrote:
Travelswithhermes wrote: Very often the author goes off onto assuming Peiper's thoughts or feelings , even writing his "thoughts" as fact
Can you cite examples of this please?
Here you go :
The moon cast an eerie glow over the scene as he gazed across the wooden balcony rails with his back to the gurgling river. His thoughts wandered. His wife was away. Although his friends in Germany called regularly, he was alone.

Another:
Peiper also emoted a note of caution: “I am not a ‘war junkie’ looking for and desiring war.” So why did he leave Himmler’s services? Would he come back? 16 No, but he did have second thoughts.

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Harro
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Re: Issues with Danny S. Parker's Hitler's Warrior Joachim Peiper bio

Post by Harro » 06 Jun 2018 14:30

Travelswithhermes wrote:
seaburn wrote:
Travelswithhermes wrote: Very often the author goes off onto assuming Peiper's thoughts or feelings , even writing his "thoughts" as fact
Can you cite examples of this please?
Here you go :
The moon cast an eerie glow over the scene as he gazed across the wooden balcony rails with his back to the gurgling river. His thoughts wandered. His wife was away. Although his friends in Germany called regularly, he was alone.

Another:
Peiper also emoted a note of caution: “I am not a ‘war junkie’ looking for and desiring war.” So why did he leave Himmler’s services? Would he come back? 16 No, but he did have second thoughts.
What are the page numbers?

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Re: Issues with Danny S. Parker's Hitler's Warrior Joachim Peiper bio

Post by Travelswithhermes » 18 Jun 2018 06:54

Harro wrote:
Travelswithhermes wrote:
seaburn wrote:
Travelswithhermes wrote: Very often the author goes off onto assuming Peiper's thoughts or feelings , even writing his "thoughts" as fact
Can you cite examples of this please?
Here you go :
The moon cast an eerie glow over the scene as he gazed across the wooden balcony rails with his back to the gurgling river. His thoughts wandered. His wife was away. Although his friends in Germany called regularly, he was alone.

Another:
Peiper also emoted a note of caution: “I am not a ‘war junkie’ looking for and desiring war.” So why did he leave Himmler’s services? Would he come back? 16 No, but he did have second thoughts.
What are the page numbers?
It is a digital copy, I don't think the pages are the same as a print copy. At least mine isn't.

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Harro
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Re: Issues with Danny S. Parker's Hitler's Warrior Joachim Peiper bio

Post by Harro » 18 Jun 2018 09:24

Okay, in that case which chapters?

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Re: Issues with Danny S. Parker's Hitler's Warrior Joachim Peiper bio

Post by jacobstuart » 24 Jun 2018 04:44

Travelswithhermes wrote: I will say again, the years of painstaking and expensive research are impressive. But some things bothered me about this book. Very often the author goes off onto assuming Peiper's thoughts or feelings , even writing his "thoughts" as fact.
"In the dark days of December 1943, Peiper’s regiment fought recklessly. Peiper led crazy night actions by attacking the rear of enemy lines; he captured four division HQs. Still, his aggressiveness and lack of experience handling tanks caused some resentment."
See Danny S. Parker, 2014, Hitler's Warrior, Chapter 8, pp. 105.

According to National Archives Records Administration, during December 5-18, 1943, the high tide of Hermann Balck's counterattack against Soviet 60th Army, the total figures of AFV of the SS-1st Pz Rgt dropped from 184 to 170, while its available figures dropped from 66 to 52.
See NARA T-314 R-1173 F-41, 302 and 321.

In the meantime, the 1st Pz Rgt from the 1st Pz Div, the second spearhead as powerful as LSSAH participating in counterattack, found its total figures of AFV dropped from 160 to 121, while the available figures dropped from 68 to 33. Both excluded the figures of Bef. Pz IIIs.
See NARA T-314 R-1173 F-40 and 283; Stephen Barratt, Zhitomir-Berdichev Vol. 1, p.77.



Gee, are we talking about the Wehrmacht 1st Panzer Division, the best among the best?

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Michael Kenny
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Re: Issues with Danny S. Parker's Hitler's Warrior Joachim Peiper bio

Post by Michael Kenny » 24 Jun 2018 06:07

jacobstuart wrote:
According to National Archives Records Administration, during December 5-18, 1943, the high tide of Hermann Balck's counterattack against Soviet 60th Army, the total figures of AFV of the SS-1st Pz Rgt dropped from 184 to 170, while its available figures dropped from 66 to 52.
See NARA T-314 R-1173 F-41, 302 and 321.
This has been done to death before.

Tanks 'fit for action' dropped from 41 on 1/12/43 to 19 on 20/12/43.
It would help to know when the 30 Panthers and 8 Tigers sent as replacements arrived/appeared on the books and if they show on the numbers as 'in the process of delivery.'
You also need to know if there was any lag between a tank becoming a casualty and it appearing on the books as such.

A clue might be that a unit was not usually issued 30 replacement Panthers unless they had lost 30 Panthers.
The number of tanks in repair by Dec 20 1943 was c.140 and to assume they were all repaired/returned to service is a common (deliberate) error of those who wish to mitigate German tank losses.
By any measure 1st SS suffered grievous losses in December 1943.
Last edited by Michael Kenny on 24 Jun 2018 06:25, edited 1 time in total.

jacobstuart
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Re: Issues with Danny S. Parker's Hitler's Warrior Joachim Peiper bio

Post by jacobstuart » 24 Jun 2018 06:22

pls verify whether this 30 Panthers is back from repairing or newly sent.

Along with these 30s the total holding figures of Panthers of SS-1 pz rgt will be over 100, how could they receive tanks more than their available crews?

pls do verify these 8 Tigers too as even in NARA there was no records of these new 8s arrived LAH throughout the campaign of Zhitomir.

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