Tuesday, September 13, 2016
The Envoy by Alex Kershaw
The lengthy subtitle, "the epic rescue of the last Jews of Europe in the desperate closing months of World War II," promises a more harrowing read than one would expect from a book about a Swedish diplomat. But the events in this book occurred during Adolf Eichmann's orchestration of the deportation of the Jewish community in Budapest. Raoul Wallenberg was one of several diplomats who impeded, circumvented, and bravely defied the Nazis and rabid Hungarian fascists to save many lives. Unfortunately, the arrival of the Soviet army only resulted in the sacking of Budapest and many further atrocities. In a terrible irony, Wallenberg himself was arrested by Soviet authorities and vanished-most likely executed as a spy. His family was stonewalled at every turn in finding the truth. The book is fast-paced and also gives a detailed account of Eichmann's final reckoning with justice.