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I read this novel in the 1970s but I am pretty sure it was published during the 1960s. Hardback. It was marketed as a 'mainstream' book, not SF. The author was a European, possibly a Holocaust survivor. Set during a 1960s where the world is divided between Nazi Germany and the Japanese Empire (the KKK controls North America). Book ends with the possibility of a full-scale nuclear war between the two. The main character is involved in either show business or news media. One scene stands out: he encounters a group of Poles who have literally been bred into animals. Author was incredibly cynical about human nature, not surprising considering his background.

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This is quite possibly Otto Basil's Wenn das der Führer wüsste (1966), or the English translation of it, The Twilight Men.

It sees an uneasy alliance between the victorious Germany (sans Hitler, who died before the plot begins) and Japan that ends in a war between the two empires, the USA as racist vassal state, and genetically modified "Untermenschen".

"Das vorerst aus ganz minderwertigem oder verbrecherischem Tschanda­lenmaterial gewonnene Menschenvieh, beziehungsweise der Tiermensch, sollte eine besondere, ganz eigenartige Stellung in der Hierarchie der Säugetiere einnehmen. Die Tiermenschen waren für ein extremes Roboter- und Her­dendasein bestimmt; soziologisch betrachtet, würden sie zwischen dem Haustier und der Maschine stehen"

"This human-beast, created, for the time being, from low-level or criminal 'tschandal' material, was intended to take a strange position in the hierarchy of mammals. The man-animals were destined for an extreme existence in flocks of organic robots; their status would be between domestic animal and machine".

You can look up at least the beginning paragraph up at Google books. I currently cannot find my copy of the book, so I pinched the full paragraph from a pirated copy. The very crude translation is mine. The difficult to translate word "Tschanda­le" was taken from Friedrich Nietzsche, his term for "inferior", "mix-breed" people).

Otto Basil was not quite a holocaust survivor, but was at one point taken into custody by the Gestapo for his political views.

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  • Please don't post obviously infringing links.
    – Valorum
    Oct 6, 2020 at 22:35
  • Basil's book may be it! I have ordered a copy to make sure. Will let you know. Oct 6, 2020 at 22:43
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    @Valorum, thank you for the reminder. To make up for it I have tipped off the German copyright holders. Oct 6, 2020 at 22:47
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This sounds like Eric Norden's The Ultimate Solution (1973).

Unlike The Man in the High Castle, in which the former Axis powers do not have nuclear weapons, this one does indeed have a nuclear-armed German potentially heading for a nuclear confrontation with Japan after the "Contraxis" faction comes to power on Hitler's death.

The Wikipedia page for the book has more details including how Slavs (and blacks) were dehumanized and treated as cattle. The commentary notes that almost all of the Nazis shown were Americans, and this may have been intended to show that Americans were perfectly capable of being monsters.

Cover of The Ultimate Solution

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  • Thanks for your answer but Norden's book isn't the one I'm looking for. It does, however, share many details. Oct 6, 2020 at 22:23
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    Unlike The Man in the High Castle ... is exactly wrong. Germany does have nuclear weapons and plans a first strike on Japan (i.e. Operation Dandelion). It depends on what power faction comes out on top after Hitler's death. The book implies it's probably called off. Oct 7, 2020 at 13:42
  • It is the Basil book! It is just as horrible and cynical as I remembered it! Oct 26, 2020 at 12:56
  • @LeeEckhardt I don't mind being wrong - it wasn't a bad guess :) - but please accept the correct answer!
    – DavidW
    Oct 26, 2020 at 18:18

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