Posted by: danielrashke | May 13, 2013

Useful Enemies

useful_enemies_jacket1Richard Rashke is a lecturer and author of non-fiction books including The Killing of Karen Silkwood, Escape from Sobibor, and Stormy Genius: The Life of Aviation’s Maverick Bill Lear. His works have been translated into eleven languages and have been the subject of movies for screen and television. He is also an alto sax player and composer. His latest composition, Crane Wife, a family musical based on a Japanese folktale, was performed at the Kennedy Center, and a new play, Dear Esther, based on a Sobibor prisoner opened this year.

Richard Rashke is also my uncle.

My uncle’s latest book, Useful Enemies: John Demjanjuk and America’s Open Door Policy for Nazi War Criminals, is an exposé of the American government’s campaign since 1940 to keep European Jews out of the U.S. and knowingly allow dozens of Nazi war criminals in.

Now, as the author’s nephew I think the book is great. But don’t take it from me; the book has received many good reviews. The Starred Kirkus Review calls the book “A richly researched, gripping narrative about war, suffering, survival, corruption, injustice and morality.”

Alan Dershowitz said “Useful Enemies is a remarkable and riveting account of how good people in a great nation can do very bad things and fail to do good things. This is a terrifying account of the triumph of injustice in the false name of pragmatism and in the immoral service of bigotry.”

Ambassador Stuart E. Eizenstat says Useful Enemies is “essential reading for anyone interested in understanding a difficult chapter in American history.”

And Selma Leydesdorff, Professor of Oral History and Culture at the University of Amsterdam says “Useful Enemies is amazing.”

My uncle will be in Madison, Wisconsin reading segments from his book and signing books on Thursday, May 23, 2013. The event starts at 7 pm at the west side Barnes and Noble bookstore and is open to the public. I encourage anyone interested in history or in just reading good books to attend.

For more information about Richard Rashke and this event visit or Copies of the book are available at Barnes and Noble or online at


%d bloggers like this: