Washington Post Book World

Christopher Simpson

Black clearly demonstrates that Nazi Germany employed IBM Hollerith punch-card machines to perform critical tasks in carrying out the Holocaust and the German war effort. He goes on to document that IBM managed to profit from Hitler's state throughout its existence. Black establishes beyond dispute that IBM Hollerith machines significantly advanced Nazi efforts to exterminate Jewry. IBM and the Holocaust is a valuable contribution to our understanding of the Holocaust.

The New York Times

Richard Bernstein

Edwin Black makes a copiously documented case for the utter amorality of the profit motive and its indifference to consequences … IBM, led by its chairman, Thomas J. Watson, had global control of a technology that was enormously helpful, indeed indispensable, to the Nazi machinery of war and annihilation.

Director, JDC, Vienna, Austria

Simon Wiesenthal

Edwin Black has put together an impressive array of facts which result in a shocking conclusion never realized before: IBM collaborated with the Third Reich. IBM and the Holocaust should be read by everyone interested in the “hidden history” of the Second World War.


Michael Hirsh

An explosive book … Backed by exhaustive research, Black’s case is simple and stunning: that IBM facilitated the identification and roundup of millions of Jews during the 12 years of the Third Reich … Black’s evidence may be the most damning to appear yet against a purported corporate accomplice.

The Atlantic

Jack Beatty

Thomas Watson chose to tabulate the Nazi census, to accept Hitler’s medal, and to fight for control of Dehomag. And he made other equally indefensible choices in his years of doing a profitable business counting Jews for Hitler—choices that are described in IBM and the Holocaust by Edwin Black. This is a shocking book. With the help of more than a hundred researchers working in archives in the US, Britain, Germany, France, and Israel, Edwin Black has documented a sordid relationship between this great American company and the Third Reich, one that extended into the war years.


Sam Jaffe

With exhaustive research, Black makes the case that IBM and Watson conspired with Nazi Germany to help automate the genocide of Europe’s Jews … Black’s book is so enlightening [because] it paints a richly textured picture of how a man [Watson], and an entire company, can ignore all sense of morality while not once transgressing the lines of business ethics. If nothing else, this book should be required reading for every first-year MBA student.

New York Review of Books

Gordon A. Craig

Black's book is most interesting when he is dealing with Watson's stubborn, and unsuccessful determination to continue in control of IBM's German operation without appearing to be doing so. He was able to cut off direct relations between IBM in the US and the Germans while continuing to deal with them indirectly. He was a master of subterfuge and made a fine art of being in a position to deny collaboration with the Nazis while operating through subsidiaries who were responsive to his every wish [...] and he never forbade them to supply IBM machine that were used in sending people to camps, which they did.

Los Angeles Times

Saul Friedlander

Black's study contains a wealth of unknown or little-known details. The author convincingly shows the relentless efforts made by IBM to maximize profit by selling its machines and its punch cards to a country whose criminal record would soon be widely recognized. Indeed, Black demonstrates with great precision that the godlike owner of the corporation, Thomas Watson, was impervious to the moral dimension of his dealings with Hitler's Germany and for years even had a soft spot for the Nazi regime. He didn't desist even when it became clear that IBM's tabulation system was helping the regime to register its victims.

Chicago Tribune

Ron Grossman

Black has tracked down document after document witnessing that Holleriths inventoried prisoners for death at Bergen-Belsen and other concentration camps. IBM and the Holocaust is a disturbing book -- all the more so because its author doesn't prescribe what should be done about sins committed more than half a century ago. It is left to readers to decide.

Philadelphia Inquirer

Jack Fischel

Black was moved to write this important book to answer questions that have eluded historians of the Nazi genocide. How are we to account for the methodical manner in which the Nazis implemented the Holocaust? Black's account of IBM's complicity in the "Final Solution" provides a perspective departs from most other accounts of the Holocaust. Whereas much of the scholarship on the Holocaust focuses on anti-Semitism ... Black argues the efficient manner in which Hitler's Germany was able to bring about the Holocaust was due to technical support provided by IBM. This prodigious research helps us understand a previously ignored factor in comprehending the Holocaust, the profit motive.


Robert Urekew

Black’s book is shocking. Its contents go against the grain of all that is dear to naive images of corporate America…. This book will be a case study in corporate ethics for years to come.

The Nation

John Friedman

IBM and the Holocaust is an ambitious book … an important contribution to Holocaust studies

Christian Science Monitor

Terry W. Hartle

The book adds much to our knowledge of the Holocaust and World War II. Black convincingly demonstrates the extent to which it [IBM technology], was central to the operation of the Third Reich.

Cleveland Plain Dealer

Karen Sandstrom

Black makes a case that shames the IBM of the mid-20th century…. There will be no question … in the minds of readers that IBM officials had the ability to understand the task their machines were performing. The book succeeds as a piece of excruciatingly documented journalism.

Milwaukee Journal Sentinel

John Mark Eberhart

Black’s argument that IBM made millions from its association with the Nazis seems almost impossible to refute.

Miami Herald

Richard Pachter

Black’s book … is an ugly story, hidden for years, told by a master craftsman in a compelling way. More than just another Holocaust tale … it’s a chilling lesson.

Louisville Courier-Journal

More than 15 million people have visited the Holocaust Museum and seen the IBM machine there. Surely some have raised the question: How could this prestigious corporation possibly be linked to such a heinous stain on human history? With empirical evidence, Edwin Black has supplied the answer. IBM and the Holocaust makes an empirical statement. Edwin Black has made his case.

Entertainment Weekly

Charles Winecoff

This damning chronicle of IBM’s collusion with the Nazis exposes, in horrific detail, the corporation’s opportunistic ride on Hitler’s tail.

Sunday Times

This is the stuff of corporate nightmare. IBM, one of the world’s richest companies, is about to be confronted with evidence of a truly shameful history. Edwin Black reveals Big Blue’s vital role in the Holocaust.

The Guardian

Peter Preston

Black … shows, in compelling detail, that IBM, ‘the solutions company’, was also the company of the Final Solution. … It is a distinctive contribution to the history of the time. It wholly justifies Black’s years of toil … a terrible warning from this brilliantly excavated past.

Der Spiegel

Christian Habbe

The computer group IBM is haunted by its past. Edwin Black’s book now reveals the company’s involvement in the Holocaust…. Previously the Nazi past of ‘Big Blue’” was hardly ever a topic. … But now IBM is in the dock. Black’s meticulous research documents just how precisely IBM managers were kept informed about the whereabouts of their machines.

Jerusalem Post

Marilyn Henry

Black’s … book is the first to give the general public a detailed account of how an American corporation profited from intimate ties with the Nazis. It strips the veneer from the cherished myth of the purity and patriotism of American business.

Fort Worth Star-Telegram

Douglas Perry

Black … documents IBM’s sins with chilling discipline. … IBM and the Holocaust lays out in numbing detail the terrible deeds of bureaucrats and business leaders. … In the end, though, this book has a subtler story to tell, one frighteningly relevant to our lives today. IBM and the Holocaust isn’t about evil men at a particularly bloody point in recent history so much as it’s about the dawn of the modern information age.


Anthony Sebok

Black’s great contribution is that he has tenaciously collected a lot of information and combined it in an original way. Few others have thought to place this information in the same context, to see what inferences can be drawn. Black’s history makes two chilling observations. The first is that the Holocaust was possible because the Nazis had access not only to guns and gas but also to cutting-edge census technology. The second is that the Nazis had access to this technology because IBM, in its paranoid zeal, worked very hard to maintain its market dominance of the global market in data processing.

National Director, Anti-Defamation League

Abraham H. Foxman

IBM and the Holocaust is a story that must be read if one is to understand how Hitler and the Nazis were able to implement their Final Solution to exterminate European Jewry…. Once again, Edwin Black has hit the mark

Executive Vice Chairman, Conference of Presidents of Major American Jewish Organizations

Malcolm Hoenlein

Leaves no room for deniability.

Historian, Auschwitz-Birkenau State Museum

Franciszek Piper

Edwin Black’s groundbreaking book, IBM and the Holocaust, made a great impression on me. It documents, for the first time, that an American company, IBM, bears a good deal of the moral responsibility for the preparation of the persecution of the Nazi victims. IBM and the Holocaust confirms the belief that the Holocaust was not only a cruel, unprecedented crime, but also an enormous bureaucratic undertaking.

Harvard International Review

Robert Urekew

After years of exhaustive research, [Black] concludes that the IBM corporation enabled the Nazi regime to be as brutally efficient as it was in identifying and sending Jews to extermination camps, confiscating their assets, and automating the German war machine … Black's meticulous documentation reveals an undeniable fact: after the outbreak of the World War II, the IBM corporation knew the whereabouts of each of its European-leased machines, and what revenues it could expect from them. Read the full review.