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We Will Not Go to Tuapse

From the Donets to the Oder with the Legion Wallonie and 5th SS Volunteer Assault Brigade ‘Wallonien’ 1942-45
Narrated by: Paul Woodson
Length: 9 hrs and 38 mins
Categories: History, 20th Century
3.5 out of 5 stars (12 ratings)

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Summary

Until recent years, very little was known of the tens of thousands of foreign nationals from Norway, Denmark, Holland, Belgium, France, and Spain who served voluntarily in the military formations of the German army and the German Waffen-SS. In Kaisergruber's book, the listener discovers important issues of collaboration, the apparent contributions of the volunteers to the German war effort, their varied experiences, their motives, the attitude of the German High Command and bureaucracy, and the reaction to these in the occupied countries. 

The combat experiences of the Walloons echoed those of the very best volunteer units of the Waffen-SS, although they shared equally in the collapse of the Third Reich in May 1945. Although unapologetic for his service, Kaisergruber makes no special claims for the German cause and writes not from any postwar apologia and dogma but instead from his firsthand observations as a young man experiencing war for the first time, extending far beyond what had been imaginable at the time. His observations of fellow soldiers, commanders, Russian civilians, and the battlefields prove poignant and telling.

©2016 Fernand Kaisergruber (P)2018 Tantor

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An apologist's Tale

If I could have given it less than 1star I would have. Truly dreadful excuse for a book. Don't waste your time. The end was terrible because it just stopped at a point in Spring 1944 leaving you without any idea what happened later.

2 people found this helpful

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excellent

well worth a read into the everyday of an ss volunteer. It's not about battles etc it's about life during those times. the last chapter are very interesting when the guy was imprisoned after the war for being a member of the ss. It's a MUST READ.

1 person found this helpful

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A warning from history

‘We will not go to Taupse....’ was a captivating and intriguing account of one Wallonien SS volunteers experiences during the Second World War. Along the lines of many other similar ww2 German accounts, one could be almost duped into the soldierly “we were only following orders” line of thinking. If it weren’t for the fact that I caught a documentary featuring the author one evening. Piecing together his testimony, his more recent comments on television, and other historical knowledge - it’s easy to see that Kaisergruber is an unrepentant product of his time, loyal to his comrades and certainly the ideals they shared.

Attracted to the German army with the vigour of a young 1940s adolescent, Kaisergruber epitomised many of his generation who were duped by Nazi propaganda into a ‘rather the hammer than the anvil’ scenario. Choosing to be the last bastions against the scourge of Bolshevism and “international Jewery”. To this end, his book gives you an insight into the perspective of many foreign volunteers who made up the ranks of the German forces during the Second World War, certainly in greater numbers than their home countries would later wish to admit to.
It must however be remembered that the truth lays not always in what is said, but what is omitted, and Kaisergrubers account at the end of the war, and certainly post war does remain a little sketchy - or over embellished. To that end, I would recommend the listener seek further research into how POW’s were treated, and especially Waffen SS POWs, before taking Kaisergruber’s account as gospel fact, rather than a biased perspective of someone on the receiving end of a long term of imprisonment.

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Ends in early 1944 for no clear reason, not clear

what occurred post 1944 is not clear. like half the book is missing. very strange ending

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A revealing insight

We forget the fact that some saw fit to join the German Army in order to fight the soviets. Little is discussed of Finland’s war against the Soviets with Germany as her ally.
This is interesting as it highlights the early years of the war and the conditions the occupied countries found themselves. Who can say how we would have responded had the war turned out differently.

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Fair!!

Not nearly as good as I had hoped. Not enough action, the author concentrates on the day to day living more than I would like.

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Profile Image for DAVIS J BEAM III
  • DAVIS J BEAM III
  • 28-03-18

Why did it end at Cherkassy?

It was a great audiobook, but why did it end at Cherkassy? I wanted to hear the story until the end. I guess that I will have to buy the book

5 people found this helpful

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  • theinglebaby23
  • 10-10-18

Pretty good

Good story, but not a lot of specific details about combat. There’s plenty, but not told in a way that really brings it out (like some more notable memoirs do).

But definitely a good listen - you hear an honest thoughts and experiences of a non-German volunteer in the SS. Something you don’t get very often anywhere else - including the history books.

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Profile Image for 1SG Milo, US Army, (Ret.)
  • 1SG Milo, US Army, (Ret.)
  • 19-01-20

Simply a good story

This story is of Dutch men who fought for the Germans against the Soviets. They were mot Nazis but boys seeking adventure. In hindsight it all seems so foolish, yet they stuck it out. Nothing is more honorable then doing one's duty not for some ideal but for a comrade.

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Profile Image for Ben
  • Ben
  • 01-09-19

very enjoyable

I really enjoyed this unique memoir written from his non German perspective.
I also enjoyed the many personal observations and descriptions.
enjoy...