The horror that rages inside anyone who survived Hitler’s declaration against humanity, particularly those of Jewish descent, erupts with three small words—the title of Simon Tolkien’s latest book—Orders from Berlin. It was here in this formerly innocuous city where the indisputable master of deceit, suffering, pain, torture, and death ordered his Wehrmacht forward. It would turn Poland, France, the Netherlands, Italy, and maybe even Russia into notorious concentrations of humans bidding his will. Yes, this was Berlin—Hitler’s city—in a time that too would live in infamy.
But thankfully for mankind, in 1940 and subsequent years, this master of sedition made a delirious mistake involving England, to Germany’s immediate north, and Russia, to Germany farther east. Increasingly maddened Hitler concluded that there was no logical reason to cross the English Channel and attack the United Kingdom when he had the spoils of so many conquered nations already at his fingertips. According to Orders from Berlin, what Hitler wanted most was to engage Russia, ASAP, to control its people and resources.
In Orders from Berlin, Hitler and his consorts in atrocity decided that rather than invade England, the most effective subjugation would be: bomb the country to its knees and ultimate surrender. A crucial factor in this plot: kill Winston Churchill—the defiant conscience of England who declared repeatedly that surrender could never happen.
The plot of Orders from Berlin thickens into an intricate local London police murder episode when the former head of English Intelligence is shoved over a railing to his death. He falls several stories from his inside apartment door. His horribly broken, lifeless body thuds to the feet of his loving daughter entering the building far below. In her absolute grief, she offers any support or information to the local police who seek her father’s killer.