GOLD IN THE FURNACE is an ardent National Socialist’s vivid and moving account of life in occupied Germany in the aftermath of World War II, based on extensive travels and interviews conducted in 1948 and 1949.
The authoress, Savitri Devi, is scathing in her description of Allied brutality and hypocrisy: millions of German civilians died from Allied firebombing; millions more perished after the war, driven from their homes by Russians, Czechs, and Poles; more than a million prisoners of war perished from planned starvation or outright murder in Allied concentration camps; untold thousands more disappeared into slave labour camps from the Congo to Siberia.
Savitri Devi describes in vivid detail how individual National Socialists were subjected to “de-Nazification” by Germany’s democratic “liberators”: murder, torture, starvation, show-trials, imprisonment, and execution for the higher echelons; petty indignities and recantations extorted under the threat of imprisonment, hunger, and the denial of livelihood for ordinary party members. She also chronicles the systematic plunder of Germany by the Allies: the clear-cutting of ancient forests, the dismantling of factories, the theft of natural resources.
In spite of the disaster, Savitri Devi did not view it as the end of National Socialism, but as a purification—a trial by fire separating the base metal from the gold—a prelude to a new beginning. Thus Savitri also devotes chapters to presenting the basic philosophy and the constructive political programme of National Socialism.
Gold in the Furnace is a valuable historical document: of the National Socialists who never lost faith, despite suffering, persecution, and martyrdom—of the ordinary Germans who revered Hitler even after the war—of the widespread rumours of Hitler’s survival—of the hopes of imminent National Socialist revival, perhaps in the aftermath of a Third World War—of the expectations of Soviet victory in such a war—and of the philosophy, experiences, and unique personality of a remarkable woman.
Gold in the Furnace is one of the first “revisionist” books on World War II and its aftermath. But although Savitri Devi challenged many claims about the concentration camps, she believed that there had been a programme of mass-extermination of Jews, and that the methods of extermination included homicidal gas chambers. She rejected these claims only in 1977, after reading Arthur Butz’s The Hoax of the Twentieth-Century.
Until now, Gold in the Furnace has been almost impossible to find. Published in a tiny edition by Savitri Devi’s husband A.K. Mukherji in Calcutta in 1952, it was distributed privately by the authoress to her friends and comrades. A German translation appeared in 1982, a Spanish translation in 1995; in 2005, a second English edition was published in England, in commemoration of the 100th anniversary of Savitri Devi’s birth, on 30 September 1905.
This limited cloth edition corrects a number of errors in the second edition (including the omission of the frontispiece and two entire pages of text), and includes several new photographs.