This introductory chapter explains the coverage of this book, which is about the history of the Kommunistische Partei Deutschlands (KPD) in West Germany. This book investigates what combination of human error, structural failure and adverse environmental conditions was to blame to the party's untimely end. This is the first in-depth study of post-war West German Communism to be published in England, and it is also the first general account based on the party's internal files.
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