Holocaust, the almost compl-ete destruction of Jews in Europe by Nazi Germany and its collaborators during World War II.
The leadership of Germany’s Nazi Party ordered the extermination of 5.6 to 5.9 million Jews
The word “holocaust” derives from the Greek holo(whole) and caustos(burned) and originally referred to a burnt offering, or a religious sacrifice that is totally consumed by fire.
Many groups were targets of Nazi brutality. For example -
Roma (Gypsies); Germans who were mentally impaired or physically disabled; and homosexuals.
Christians blamed the Jews for the crucifixion of Jesus
In the view of those who believed in the race theory, the Jews were a mongrel race—and a mortal threat to the “purity” of the “higher”race.
In Poland, Romania and the Baltic states they were known as carriers of communism
Persecution of Jews during the middle ages. They were thought to be the cause of the great plague. Romans destroying a Jewish temple in the years 66 AD and 70 AD
Attitude towards jews after WW-I
Many Germans blamed the Jews for Germany’s defeat in World War I, some even claiming that German Jews had betrayed the nation during the war
Most of the leaders of the spartacist league were Jews. As a result, some Germans associated Jews with Bolsheviks and regarded both groups as dangerous enemies of Germany.
German Jews under Nazi regime Boycotting Jewish owned shops. 1st April 1933. A Jewish family leaving Germany, en route to Lithuania as german soldiers Jeer in the background.
A burning synagogue on the “night of broken glass” “Germans! Defend yourselves! Do not buy from Jews”
By 1938 two-thirds of German Jews had left the country.
60 per cent of those who stayed had lost their livelihood
The authorities arrested 30,000 Jews and sent them to concentration camps, where they were severely mistreated.
At a meeting held two days after the pogrom, top Nazi leaders decided that the Jews of Germany should bear the cost of the destruction regardless of insurance coverage.
Nazi propaganda against the Jews This 1940 poster advertises the worst of the Nazi anti-Semitic films, "The Eternal Jew.
"The Jew: The inciter of war, the prolonger of war.“
This picture depicts a supposedly innocent German citizen paying a Jewish man as the Jewish man sprays lies onto him.
On the left is the Jewish worm, with a dollar sign and Communist hammer and sickle sign form each pupil; on the right is a depiction of The Wandering Jew
"The work of the Jews: fabrics, cement, cartels, factories. Wants everything!”
Beginnings of the exterminations “FOR EVER LET THIS PLACE BE CRY OF DESPAIR AND A WARNING TO HUMANITY, WHERE THE NAZIS MURDERED ABOUT ONE AND A HALF MILLION MEN, WOMEN, AND CHILDREN, MAINLY JEWS FROM VARIOUS COUNTRIES OF EUROPE.” AUSCHWITZ- BIRKENAU 1940 - 1945 English memorial in auschwitz-birkenau concentration camp in Poland where many Jews faced the Nazi brutality.
December 12, 1941, Joseph Goebbels- “As concerns the Jewish question, [Hitler] is determined to make a clean sweep. He had prophesied to the Jews that if they once again brought about a world war they would experience their own extermination. This was not just an empty phrase. The World War is there, the extermination of Jewry must be the necessary consequence.”
Beginning in late September 1941 German forces carried out large-scale actions in which whole Jewish communities were wiped out.
For instance, 33,000 Jews of Kiev, in Ukraine, were killed on September 29 and 30, 1941, in a ravine outside Kiev called Babi Yar.
In the autumn of 1941 a new phase began. Until then the targets had been Soviet Jews, but now the killing was extended to Jews in parts of Poland and Serbia.
During1941 to 1942 there was a pause in the shootings because the frozen ground prevented the digging of pits for burying the jews.
“The final solution”
In the autumn of 1941 the Nazis began deporting all the Jews of occupied Europe to the east (Poland and the western USSR) in order to exterminate them.
In the so-called euthanasia program, which had begun in the fall of 1939, Nazi doctors killed Germans with mental or physical disabilities.
Tens of thousands were murdered, mostly by the administration of carbon monoxide gas supplied in large metal bottles.
The countries from which Jews were deported included countries under German occupation—such as Norway, France, The Netherlands, Belgium, Luxembourg, Czechoslovakia, Poland, Yugoslavia, and Greece.
First in line were the 3 million Polish Jews. Gassing commenced at three camps in the period from March to July 1942. Between 750,000 and 950,000 Jews were gassed at Treblinka; between 500,000 and 600,000 at Bełżec, and about 200,000 at Sobibór.
Some Holocaust memorials In Jerusalem – by Januscz korczak
Holocaust Memorial for the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania – by David Ascalon. Yad vashem in Jerusalem
An interview with a holocaust survivor In this interview with the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum, Holocaust survivor Susan (Strauss) Taube shares her memories of “THE NIGHT OF BROKEN GLASS.”