Cover image for Your loyal and loving son : the letters of tank gunner Karl Fuchs, 1937-41
Your loyal and loving son : the letters of tank gunner Karl Fuchs, 1937-41
Fuchs, Karl, 1917-1941.
Personal Author:
Uniform Title:
Sieg Heil!
First edition.
Publication Information:
Washington, D.C. : Brassey's, [2003]

Physical Description:
vii, 163 pages, 8 unnumbered pages of plates : illustrations ; 23 cm
General Note:
Originally published: Sieg Heil! Hamden, Conn. : Archon Books, 1987.
Format :


Call Number
Material Type
Home Location
Item Holds
D793 .F82213 2003 Adult Non-Fiction Non-Fiction Area

On Order



These are the compelling letters of Karl Fuchs, an ordinary German soldier who was completely convinced of the righteousness of his cause and who wrote them free of the recriminations and hindsight arising from the bitterness of defeat. Combining enthusiastic expressions of loyalty to the führer and the Fatherland with messages of love for his family and requests for necessities from home, they provide a personal look at a youth typical of his time, one whose fervent and naive nationalism was of the very sort that later fanned the flames of the Holocaust.Throughout Your Loyal and Loving Son , young Fuchs remains an idealist, confident in his concept of duty. Yet his letters clearly support the general assertion that many Germans who backed the Third Reich did so neither out of opportunistic self-interest nor nihilistic delight in destruction, but instead in the hope for a better future. Killed on the Eastern Front, Fuchs did not live to see his son, the infant to whom he wrote and who as an adult compiled these letters for publication. With an introduction and annotations by eminent historian Dennis Showalter, this collection will help make those early war years more comprehensible to contemporary readers.

Reviews 1

Booklist Review

This is a typically grim World War II story, assembled from the letters of a fine young man who was killed in action near Moscow before he ever saw his son. If there is any atypical grimness, it lies in Wehrmacht tanker Fuchs' having been the son of a devout Nazi and a subscriber to every bit of ideological scheiss that made him and his comrades a scourge to civilization. In between effusions of hatred, however, one finds in his letters complaints about lousy food and trying to live on a student's stipend in the face of a housing shortage. Fuchs loved his wife and the son he never saw (who is the editor-translator of the letters), wondered if he was ever going to get into the war and if his superiors were really on his side, and quarreled with his father, who seems to have been an old-style Teutonic paterfamilias. After reading the letters and Showalter's invaluable commentary, one is glad Fuchs' side lost but regrets that he did not survive. ^-Roland Green

Table of Contents

Dennis E. ShowalterDennis E. ShowalterDennis E. Showalter
Acknowledgmentsp. v
1 Introductionp. 1
2 Introductionp. 3
3 The Soldier's Assignmentsp. 5
4 Historical Commentsp. 7
5 The Letters--Footnotesp. 23
6 Conclusionp. 155
7 Glossary of German Termsp. 157
8 Suggestions for Further Readingp. 161