In reality, everyone was simply searching for an excuse to look away from the crimes all around.  Soon a growing indifference began to spread even among declared opponents of Hitler. To a not inconsiderable degree it could be put down to the innocuous vocabulary of the regime. My father was “cut back”, that was the euphemism; others were “provisionally” retired; arrests were called “preventive custody” – what was so terrible about that?

Joachim Fest, “Not Me: Memoirs of a German Childhood”.


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