Serbia under the Swastika: A World War II Occupation

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University of Illinois Press, Jun 6, 2017 - History - 240 pages
The 1941 Axis invasion of Yugoslavia initially left the German occupiers with a pacified Serbian heartland willing to cooperate in return for relatively mild treatment. Soon, however, the outbreak of resistance shattered Serbia's seeming tranquility, turning the country into a battlefield and an area of bitter civil war. Deftly merging political and social history, Serbia under the Swastika looks at the interactions between Germany's occupation policies, the various forces of resistance and collaboration, and the civilian population. Alexander Prusin reveals a German occupying force at war with itself. Pragmatists intent on maintaining a sedate Serbia increasingly gave way to Nazified agencies obsessed with implementing the expansionist racial vision of the Third Reich. As Prusin shows, the increasing reliance on terror catalyzed conflict between the nationalist Chetniks, communist Partisans, and the collaborationist government. Prusin unwraps the winding system of expediency that at times led the factions to support one-another against the Germans--even as they fought a ferocious internecine civil war to determine the future of Yugoslavia.

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About the author (2017)

Alexander Prusin is a professor of history at the New Mexico Institute of Mining and Technology. He is the author of The Lands Between: Conflict in the Eastern European Borderlands, 1870-1992 and Nationalizing a Borderland: War, Ethnicity, and Anti-Jewish Violence in East Galicia, 1914-1920.

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