"Two groups of saboteurs, highly trained by direction of the German High Command at a special school for sabotage near Berlin, carrying cases of powerful explosives and nearly $150,000 in cash, were landed on the Long Island and the Florida coasts from submariner in the last fortnight with orders to blow up certain key plants and to cause panic in large cities."
These newspaper accounts, appearing half a year after the United States' entry into World War 11, open the incredible story of one of Hitler's most diabolical plans: to wreak havoc and terror in America's cities through the hands of carefully trained German agents whose goal was co sabotage manufacturing plants, cut off New York City's water supply, and bomb train stations and Jewish-owned department stores. Shadow Enemies follows in absorbing detail the astonishing facts of this episode, from the recruitment and training of the agents to their landing on the shores of New York and Florida and their successful infiltration into American society, and from there to the desperate attempts of the FBI to apprehend them before they could put their plans into effect. Shadow Enemies not only follows the unfolding of the plot from the outside but also affords a fascinating glimpse of the internal motivations and fears of a key member of the Nazi cell.
Equally fascinating is the second part of the story: the capture and subsequent trial of the agents. Fearful that a civilian court would not hand down the death sentences he wished, President Franklin D. Roosevelt ordered a military tribunal convened to try the defendants, without the civil rights common in jury trials. The tribunal led to the execution of sex of the eight conspirators only two months after their arrest.
Shadow Enemies not only provides a thrilling picture of an astonishing World War II story, but also affords a timely examination of pertinent questions relating to civil rights, justice, and how wartime necessity affects these central principles of American life.
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