THE HOLOCAUSTThe Holocaust is the name given to the mass murder of Jews by the Nazis duringWorld War II. It was the systematic, bureaucratic, state-sponsored persecutionand murder of approximately six million Jews led by Adolf Hitler, the Naziregime and its collaborators between 1933 and 1945. Although millions of others,such as Romani, Sinti, homosexuals, the disabled and political opponents of theNazi regime, were also victims of persecution and murder, only the Jews weresingled out for total extermination. There are two main phases to the Holocaust,the period between 1933 and 1939, the Nazi rise, and the period between 1939and 1945, the period of war, or more specifically, World War II. The firstconcentration camp opened in January 1933, when the Nazis came to power, andcontinued to run until the end of the war and the Third Reich, 8th of May, 1945.
LEADERSHIPAdolf Hitler was the man behind the ordering of this mass genocide called ‘TheHolocaust’. Hitler was born in the Austrian village of Brannau in 1889. After hisparents died he moved to Vienna where there was a history of anti-semitism.This was where his hatred towards the Jews originated.When the Nazis became the largest single party in Germany, Adolf Hitler wasappointed German Chancellor in January of 1933. He believed that the Jews wereto blame for all Germany’s difficulties during the ‘inter-war’ years, he persuadedothers to think so also.It was during World War II, Hitler undertook the ‘final solution’. He sent thejewish to live in Ghettoes and concentration camps such as Aushwitz. The Nazisordered the SS (police force) to begin gassing older men, women and children.Young me who were fit and able enough for work were used as slave labour untilthey died.
ANTI-SEMITISMA strong factor of the Holocaust was anti-semitism. The state-sponsored persecution andmurder of European Jews by Nazi Germany and its collaborators is history’s most extremeexample of anti-semitism. Anti-semitism can be defined as discrimination against or prejudiceor hostility toward Jews. The term "Semitic" refers to the descendents of Shem, a commonancestor of Middle Eastern people, but is now used specifically to refer to Jews. Socialscientists consider it a form of racism. In the period before World War II, when animosity towards Jews was far morecommonplace, it was not uncommon for a person, organization, or political party to self-identify as an anti-semite or anti-semitic. In the aftermath of the Kristallnacht pogrom in 1938,German propaganda minister Goebbels announced: "The German people is anti-Semitic. It hasno desire to have its rights restricted or to be provoked in the future by parasites of the Jewishrace.” After the 1945 victory of the Allies over Nazi Germany, and particularly after the extentof the Nazi genocide of Jews became known, the term "anti-semitism" acquired pejorativeconnotations. This marked a full circle shift in usage, from an era just decades earlier when"Jew" was used as a pejorative term.
NEO-NAZISMFollowing the Holocaust, came the growth of neo-nazism. A neo-nazi can bedefined as a person who belongs to a political organization whose beliefs areinspired by or reminiscent of Nazism. Neo-Nazism consists of post-World WarII social or political movements seeking to revive Nazism. The term neo-Nazismcan also refer to the ideology of these movements. Neo-Nazism borrows elements from Nazi doctrine. Holocaust denial is acommon feature, as is incorporation of Nazi symbols and admiration of AdolfHitler. Neo-Nazi activity appears to be a global phenomenon, with organizedrepresentation in many countries, as well as international networks. SomeEuropean and Latin American countries have laws prohibiting the expression ofpro-Nazi, and anti-Semitic views. Many Nazi-related symbols are banned inEuropean countries in an effort to curtail neo-Nazism. Neo-Nazis also hold anentire array of pseudoscientific ideas and conspiracy theories, regarding theHolocaust.
JEWSThe Nazis came to power in January 1933, they believed that they were raciallysuperior and the Jews were a threat to the German racial community. In the yearsbetween 1933 and 1939, the Nazi regime had affected the social, economic andcommunal parts to the German Jewish Community. On April 1, 1933 the Nazishad announced a boycott of all Jewish-run businesses, on this day the star ofdavid was painted on doors and windows on Jewish business and signs wereposted saying ‘Don’t buy form Jews’ . This was the first act against the Jewswhich marked the beginning of the campaign by the Nazi party against the entireGerman Jewish population.
THE GHETTOES The most drastic change for the Jewish community came with the outbreak ofwar on September 1,1939, this is when Germany invaded Poland, soon after in1940 the Nazis began establishing ghettos for jews living in Poland and easternEurope. The largest ghetto was in Warsaw with 445,000 jews living there, In eachghetto there was a jewsih council known as a Judenrat, these councils wereresponsible to respond to Nazi demands and regulate life of ghetto, Up to 1,000people per day would be loaded onto a train and sent to Concentration Camps.
OPRAH AND ELIE WEISEL AT AUSCWITZhttp://www.youtube.com/watch?v=slZMOkYJFO0