Armed (ghettos) 20,000 to 30,000 Jews fought in resistance groups What would you need in order to stage an armed rebellion? People who are willing, enough weapons for the majority, training, food and water, a place to meet a leader, a plan, free time, misc. supplies, etc. What were the conditions for Jews in the ghettos? Not enough food and water, difficult to get weapons inside, caged in, always working, no free time curfews, etc. What do we know about the German Army? They were very strong - the overtook countries like Poland and France who already had standing armies (who were already trained and well fed, with plenty of weapons) in a matter of WEEKS!
Warsaw Ghetto Uprising 04/19/43 - 05/16/43 Occurred after most of the inhabitants were deported, so it was a last stand (nothing left to lose) 750 Jews with minor weapons (pistols, old rifles, Molotov cocktails) held off 2,000+ Nazis
Armed Resistance in Camps Sonderkommando in Auschwitz smuggled dynamite to blow up a crematorium & gas chamber 600 escaped All were eventually recaptured
Unarmed Resistance Initially all about maintaining - not outright survival Youth Groups Radios Underground Newspapers Sabotage Documentation (pictures or diaries)
Obstacles to Resistance Superior Armed Power of Nazi Army Nazi tactic of collective responsibility Entire communities held responsible for the actions of 1 person Encouraged people to tell on each other Isolation Easy to identify Frequently spoke different language Did not know where they were Collective responsibility used against non - Jews as well
Spiritual Resistance Does not require guns, ammo, or risk You do not need anything material Nothing the Nazis can see You only needed one thing
HOPE The will to survive Someone or something to live for A reason to go on, to get up everyday Remember to be HUMAN Not everyone who had hope survived, but everyone who survived had hope
Hope as a paradox The hope that kills Passive - no action is taken “ Things will get better if we wait . . . “ The hope that sustains Active - you take control of your situation Doing the little things that keep you human