American soldiers remember the concentration camps in recent release by Dr. Theresa Ast
“Confronting the Holocaust: American Soldiers Liberate Concentration Camps” a monograph about American military personnel who entered the Nazi concentration camps in Spring 1945, was released by Theresa Ast, Ph.D., professor of history at Reinhardt University.
Speaking of the GI experience Dr. Ast wrote, “American soldiers were not prepared emotionally or psychologically for the enormous human suffering and degradation they witnessed. Viewing the camp atrocities and being exposed to the full extent of Nazi barbarism was a watershed experience for many soldiers.” She published her research because of continued interest in the Holocaust, knowing there will soon be no living witness to the liberation of the camps.
After surviving both the Nazi and Soviet invasions, the Polish side of her family emigrated to America in 1949. Not surprisingly, World War II and the Holocaust are central to Dr. Ast’s teaching, research, and writing. She earned an M.A and Ph.D. in Modern European History at Emory University in Atlanta.
Dr. Ast has made numerous presentations on the Holocaust at a variety of scholarly conferences, including the Mid-America Conference on History, Southern Historical Association, Tennessee Holocaust Studies Conference, West Point Association of Atlanta, Association for Core Texts and Courses, and the Georgia Association of Historians. She was also a Fellow of the U.S. Army Center of Military History in Washington, DC, and the Witness to the Holocaust Project at Emory University.
“Confronting the Holocaust: American Soldiers Liberate Concentration Camps,” is available through Amazon.