This book hopes to bring more serious attention to Sicherheitspolizei (Sipo) and Sicherheitsdienst (SD)—more significant in its totality than the Gestapo, a component that has overshadowed it in popular and scholarly attention. The book contributes to the understanding of both the Nazi experience and the emerging field of police history. Here the book pursues, in contrast to that “history from above,” an internal history, or “history from below.” The book seeks to unravel “the mediations between policy makers, policy enforcers, and ordinary citizens.” It focuses primarily on the enforcers—not only their mediations between policy makers and the public, but also their roles as de facto policy makers that resulted from that mediation. It is at this level that one must test one major vector in the thrusts of functional interpretations of police-state terrorism and Nazi Germany's racial programs.
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