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Item No. HP-012
For Rex and Belgium
Leon Degrelle and Walloon Political & Military Collaboration 1940-45
By Eddy de Bruyne & Marc Rikmenspoel
Nearly 60 years after the end of the Second World War, the name "Degrelle" remains controversial in Belgium and abroad. Reviled by many, honoured by others, Leon Degrelle's service in the German military continues to spawn controversy. Was he a traitor to his nation, or a hero for anti-Communism? Until recently, the only information available on the man and his political movement came from Degrelle's own memoirs, or from works heavily slanted for or against him.
Eddy De Bruyne, specialist in WWII Walloon Military Collaboration, and as such for more than 15 years correspondent to the former Brussels based Centre for Research and Studies on the History of the Second World War (now CEGES), has devoted over 20 years to intensively studying the available documentation, as well as interviewing the surviving collaborators of that era, including Degrelle himself. De Bruyne's findings, set down in several French language publications, represent the most detailed studies of Walloon political and military collaboration yet assembled.
Now, with the aid of American Waffen-SS researcher Marc Rikmenspoel, De Bruyne has combined his works into a single English language book. In a straight forward, introductory manner, the history of Degrelle and the Rex political movement is set out, along with its eventual military collaboration after the 1940 German occupation of Belgium. Also covered are rival movements and important personalities, along with an extensive list of sources.
The greatest portion of the book is devoted to the most comprehensive account of the campaigns of the Legion Wallonie and its successor SS-Sturmbrigade/Division Wallonien (28th SS Panzergrenadier Division) yet seen in English. These units saw action in some of the bitterest sectors of the Eastern Front from 1942 to 1945, including the Caucasus, Cherkassy, the Baltic and Pomerania. The author’s present fascinating information about Degrelle’s Spanish volunteers and obscure Walloon military formations.
The text is supported by approximately 400 period photos, complemented by many maps and illustrations of contemporary posters and other ephemera, completing a package that will be a must-have for military historians, aficionados of rare photos, and collectors of materials on the SS.
- Léon Degrelle remains a controversial and high profile personality – this is the most impartial and deeply-researched study concerning his life and actions yet to appear in any language.
- The authors provide a detailed and balanced account of Walloon military and political collaboration with the Germans
- The majority of the book provides an extremely comprehensive account of the campaigns of the Legion Wallonie and its successor SS-Sturmbrigade/Division Wallonien (28th SS Panzergrenadier Division) on the Eastern Front 1942-45
- The authors’ phenomenal research is supported by nearly 400 photos, as well as other illustrations and many maps, making For Rex and For Belgium an important purchase for military history enthusiasts, researchers and collectors of materials on the SS
Hard cover, 8.5" x 11", 312 pages, b+w wartime photography. $79.95
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