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John Banville: Olympic-Standard Depravity

18 February 1999
Arthur Koestler: The Homeless Mind 
by David Cesarani.
Heinemann, 646 pp., £25, November 1998, 0 434 11305 0
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... world of his childhood destroyed, and was never again able to find a place in which to belong. As David Cesarani puts it in the closing lines of this monumental (it is the only word) biography, for Koestler ‘home represented the secure bourgeois domesticity swept away by the Great War; home was a country that rejected him and connived in the slaughter ...

Four pfennige per track km

Thomas Laqueur: Adolf Eichmann and Holocaust photography

4 November 2004
Eichmann: His Life and Crimes 
by David Cesarani.
Heinemann, 458 pp., £20, August 2004, 0 434 01056 1
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Photographing the Holocaust: Interpretations of the Evidence 
by Janina Struk.
Tauris, 251 pp., £15.95, December 2003, 1 86064 546 1
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... much heart.Reitlinger devotes a substantial number of pages to Eichmann and concludes, in a phrase David Cesarani quotes, that Eichmann’s ‘career was that of a German civil servant, absorbed in his work and getting no glory for it’. Reitlinger didn’t fail to recognise his significance in the murder of millions of Jews but, like Arendt later on, he ...

On Trying to Be Portugal

Geoffrey Wheatcroft: Zionist Terrorism

6 August 2009
‘A Senseless, Squalid War’: Voices from Palestine 1945-48 
by Norman Rose.
Bodley Head, 278 pp., £20, March 2009, 978 0 224 07938 9
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Major Farran’s Hat: Murder, Scandal and Britain’s War against Jewish Terrorism 1945-48 
by David Cesarani.
Heinemann, 290 pp., £20, March 2009, 978 0 434 01844 4
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... just before the birth of the state described in Norman Rose’s ‘A Senseless, Squalid War’ and David Cesarani’s Major Farran’s Hat. Both books deal with the last years of the Mandate, when the rightist nationalists of the Irgun and the Stern Gang waged a fierce campaign against British forces and the Arab population, provoking an increasingly ...

Effing the Ineffable

Glen Newey: Humanity: A Moral History of the 20th Century by Jonathan Glover

25 November 1999
Humanity: A Moral History of the 20th Century 
by Jonathan Glover.
Cape, 469 pp., £18.99, October 1999, 0 224 05240 3
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... be accepted at the outset. Anyone – to be more specific, mountebanks like Daniel Goldhagen and David Cesarani – with not a lot to say, but with a will to dilate about atrocity, can extort a hearing for themselves. Others, with more to say, seem to have a clause in their contracts demanding that they mention it at least once in any article, be it on ...

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