Flint Whitlock’s “Hell on a Hilltop: Murder, Torture & Medical Experiments in the Nazis’ Worst Concentration Camp”: Book review

The third book in Flint Whitlock’s “Buchenwald trilogy,” “Hell on a Hilltop” is as well researched as his other books. Packed with facts, interviews, eyewitness accounts, the Buchenwald Trilogy will deepen your familiarity with the subject matter as Flint drives towards “the center of the black heart, […] the very crawling inside of the vicious heart.”
However, one wonders why it had to be a trilogy. Not only do the three books repeat material, but within each book there is much repetition, and this is not helped by the constant insertion of material into footnotes instead of working it suitably into the main body of text.
That said, this, as most books on the subject, will bring new horrors and shocks, such as the letter of an Austrian policemen to his wife about “the great slaughter the day before yesterday” when cleaning out a Byelorussian ghetto:
“With the first vehicles my hand shook at the moment of firing, but you get used to it. By the tenth, I was aiming calmly and shooting with a steady hand – women, children, and infants. […] The infants flew through the sky in big arcs and we shot them in midair before they fell into the pit or in the water. We have to finish off these beasts that have dragged Europe into war.”
Despite the at times clumsy writing, Flint is unceasing in his search for an answer to the question he poses: “How close is the average person to being capable of committing the same sorts of crimes the Nazis committed?”


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