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Fur Volk and Fuhrer Audiobook

Fur Volk and Fuhrer: The Memoir of a Veteran of the 1st SS Panzer Division Leibstandarte SS Adolf Hitler

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Publisher's Summary

Like many Germans, Berlin schoolboy Erwin Bartmann fell under the spell of the Zeitgeist cultivated by the Nazis. Convinced he was growing up in the best country in the world, he dreamt of joining the Leibstandarte, Hitler's elite Waffen SS unit. Tall, blond, blue-eyed, and just 17-years-old, Erwin fulfilled his dream on Mayday 1941, when he gave up his apprenticeship at the Glaser bakery in Memeler Strasse and walked into the Lichterfelde barracks in Berlin as a raw, volunteer recruit.

On arrival at the Eastern Front in late summer 1941, Erwin was assigned to a frontline communications squad and soon discovered that survival was a matter of luck - or the protection of a guardian angel. Good fortune finally deserted Erwin on 11 July 1943 when shrapnel sizzled through his lung during the epic Battle of Kursk-Prokhorovka. Following a period of recovery, and promotion to Unterscharführer, Erwin took up a post as machine-gun instructor with the Ausbildung und Ersatz Bataillon.

From the war on the southern sector of the Eastern Front to a bomb-shattered Berlin populated largely by old men and demoralized lonely women, this candid eyewitness account offers a unique and sometimes surprising perspective on the life of a young Leibstandarte SS Adolf Hitler volunteer.

©2013 Estate of Erwin Bartmann/Derik Hammond (P)2017 Tantor

What the Critics Say

"This is a valuable memoir, providing both a good account of the nature of the fighting in the East, and the changing attitudes of the author, both towards the Nazi regime and the chances of final victory." ( History of War)

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

4.7 (11 )
5 star
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4.8 (10 )
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5.0 (10 )
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Performance


There are no listener reviews for this title yet.

Sort by:
  • Jeffrey
    CASA GRANDE, AZ, United States
    19/07/17
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Sehr gut. "

    Slightly naive, but honest. The end of the war chapters were the best. It is worth a read.

    3 of 3 people found this review helpful
  • Daniel S Seely
    6/08/17
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Wow what a ride"

    These guys had a life not many will experience. Hell on the eastern front with sex strewn about. No doubt there are many men now forgotten whose stories we would die for.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  • Peter Cranley
    27/07/17
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Incredible Biography"
    What did you love best about Fur Volk and Fuhrer?

    Totally absorbing - did not want to turn it off. Cant believe the author is 88 years old.


    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  • Thomas
    Morrow, OH, United States
    30/12/17
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "best WW2 audio of all time"

    "the Russians tanks came for the front line.... that is when I saw naked German women and children tied to the tanks alive!......filthy dogs I thought and paying them back is all I could think of...." If this doesn't grab you by the balls then you need to wake up from the dead.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • Nick H.
    10/06/17
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Insight into Waffen SS"

    Interesting autobiographical look into the life of a loyal Waffen SS soldier who fought to the end of the war in the Liebstandarte. Gives a unique look from the perspective of a soldier uninvolved in anything around the einsatzgruppen or murder squads. The majority of the Waffen SS were men who just wanted to be a part of Germany's elite fighting formations. This book tells the story of one of those men and I absolutely inhaled it. Great listen, check it out.

    3 of 4 people found this review helpful
  • James Carl Barsz, MD
    Casa Grande, AZ, USA
    2/05/17
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "I admire this man's loyalty"

    I loved this book. I have never before read an SS man's reminiscences, so free of political or self-serving rhetoric.

    5 of 7 people found this review helpful
  • Steven K. Arnold
    6/09/17
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Remember: this is a memoir."

    This is a pretty disappointing listen. Sure they were cold, hungry, and sometimes ran out of ammunition.

    But there's no mention of shooting prisoners and the other things the SS is infamous for.

    I suppose I shouldn't expect a confession to war crimes. But any work that fails to mention SS atrocities, is dishonest.

    I suggest you keep shopping. And, if you haven't read "The Forgotten Soldier" or "Soldat," I'll recommend both. "The Forgotten Soldier is, by far, one of the top five WWII memoirs; right along side "With the Old Breed" by Sledge.

    I hate to be harsh. But this was a bit disappointing.

    4 of 8 people found this review helpful
  • Ronald
    Alpharetta, GA, United States
    27/07/17
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "E xcelent book."

    Narrator was great. Very easy to listen..
    The Germans appear to be much like the Amaricans.

    1 of 2 people found this review helpful
  • Mary
    Portland, OR, United States
    22/05/17
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "High rating with a major proviso"

    Giving the story 5 stars is a bit misleading. While I found it interesting to hear about training for and participating in the war I was shocked to learn how little understanding he had, even in his old age, of the reasons Germany went to war in the first place. He says it was to prevent Bolshevism world wide with no awareness or perhaps refusal to see Hitler's war-mongering. Even his telling of the suffering of German soldiers makes it sound like no one suffered as much and there was certainly no acknowledgement of concentration camps and their purpose. Oh, and he helped a Jewish neighbor once so I guess he did his bit. The only reason I finished it was because I thought perhaps there would be some coming to terms with his contribution to Europe's destruction but that was too much to hope for. I don't care if he was only 9 when Hitler came to power. He had 50+ years to understand and he never did.

    14 of 28 people found this review helpful
  • Byron J. Swafford
    TheSticks
    28/04/17
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Great story"

    A great story from a honorable veteran of the Waffen SS. The men of the Waffen SS in my opinion were the finest, bravest, toughest soldiers of WW2. While other branches of the SS were despicable people, they had very little in common with the brave SOLDIERS of the various Waffen SS Divisions. They asked no quarter and fought as such. Fighting and dying for a lost cause is a hardship that is incomprehensible for most who want to judge them, but never walked a mile in their shoes. God bless them all as they slowly die off and just fade away.

    5 of 14 people found this review helpful
Sort by:
  • Amazon Customer
    16/09/17
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Pro-Nazi?"
    Would you say that listening to this book was time well-spent? Why or why not?

    Interesting to hear a story from someone in the Nazi SS.


    What was one of the most memorable moments of Fur Volk and Fuhrer?

    I was surprised that the author had selective amnesia about anything negative regarding the SS and the Nazi regime.
    Although his parents were Nazi party members and he was indoctrinated into the racist system he hardly mentions antisemitism and even claims to have been friendly and helped Jewish neighbours.
    I don't believe a Nazi would call good morning to a Jewish labour in 1939 and go out of his way to help them in 1940?
    Erwin implies that the SS Leibstandart had nothing to do with war crimes which goes against all the historical evidence.
    From the very start of the war the Leibstandarte comited atrocities,
    In 1939 members of the LSSAH committed atrocities in numerous Polish towns, including the murder of 50 Jews in Błonie and the massacre of 200 civilians, including children, who were machine gunned in Złoczew. Shootings also took place in Bolesławiec, Torzeniec, Goworowo, Mława, and Włocławek.
    On 28 May 1940 the Leibstandarte had taken the village of Wormhout, only ten miles from Dunkirk. After their surrender, soldiers from the 2nd Battalion, Royal Warwickshire Regiment, along with some other units (including French soldiers) were taken to a barn in La Plaine au Bois near Wormhout and Esquelbecq. It was there that troops of the Leibstandarte 2nd Battalion committed the Wormhoudt massacre, where 80 British and French prisoners of war were killed.
    The list of crimes go's on and on but for Erwin and his story the SS are all good chaps.


    Did the narration match the pace of the story?

    The naration was a little monotone.


    Could you see Fur Volk and Fuhrer being made into a movie or a TV series? Who would the stars be?

    Only if you want to see a Nazi properganda film.


    Any additional comments?

    A book about the SS Panzer Division Leibstandarte SS Adolf Hitler that glosses over antisematism against the Jews and war crimes against prisoners and civilians is a work of fiction and not a credible memoir of the SS at war.
    Unfortunatly this book could be seen as Nazi properganda as it distorts the facts and portraise the SS troops as heros when they were political fanatics who took part in some of the worst crimes of the 20th century.
    Bottom line is Erwin only tells you what he wants you to hear.

    5 of 7 people found this review helpful
  • caulms@excite.co.uk
    a reader from Oxfordshire, U.K.
    4/09/17
    Overall
    "Terrible choice of narrator"

    This book gives an interesting viewpoint to the war in Russia however the narrators american accent and terrible american pronunciations have ruined this as an audio book

    3 of 4 people found this review helpful
  • Laura
    24/04/17
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Excellent first hand account of the life of a member of the SS"

    I must say I thought this book to be excellent and gripping to say the least .
    Had me picturing actual events as he actually lived them ....
    Well done to all involved in this books publishing.....
    Regards,
    JJ Y

    2 of 3 people found this review helpful
  • Anonymous
    15/01/18
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "A brilliant view into a soldier’s life. A definite must..."

    The story of a young man who wished to join the best regiment that Germany offered at that time is very entertaining and extremely humbling.
    It provides a real insight into the second world war and will no doubt dispel several cliched ideas and opinions of the Waffen SS in general.

    The only problem is the terrible pronunciation by the narrator, both with his attempt at any German words and also the place names in England.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Anonymous
    7/12/17
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Excellent account"

    Excellent candid and honest account of SS LAH veteran, recommend to anyone with an interest in WW2 as such accounts are quite rare.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Roo
    GERRARDS CROSS Buckinghamshire
    19/11/17
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "WW2 The tragedy of the 20th Century"

    I like the story of an ordinary person caught up in world shattering events.
    For the lower classes, whether your master be a facist or a communist, the outcome is just the same.........

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • C. Hamilton-welsh
    uk
    9/09/17
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "really well written and read. "

    interesting and compelling perspective of an elite young German soldier. so much detail, very vivid. highly recommended

    1 of 2 people found this review helpful
  • Stephen
    14/07/17
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "a brilliant accout "

    could not stop listening it was a very good account of what it must have been like for Mr Bartman. Thanks

    1 of 2 people found this review helpful
  • Jim JAMES
    7/05/17
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Captivating"

    This was my first foray with an audio book. I enjoy seeing the Second World War from the German perspective. The content and delivery was excellent. I would recommend this book.

    1 of 2 people found this review helpful
  • jules
    23/12/17
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "superb"

    fantastic insight into the life of an elite soldier during WW2. A must read for anyone with interest.

    0 of 1 people found this review helpful

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