Presentation on theme: "Chapter 15, Section 4 The Holocaust. From the time Hitler came to power, he targeted Jews for persecution. By war’s end Nazis murdered 6 million Jews."— Presentation transcript:
Chapter 15, Section 4 The Holocaust
From the time Hitler came to power, he targeted Jews for persecution. By war’s end Nazis murdered 6 million Jews and 5 million inferiors Today, continue to remember and seek ways to prevent it from happening again.
Roots of the Holocaust Edward R Murrow saw at Buchenwald just a fragment of the most horrible chapter of the Nazi era. In 1945 there was no word for it. Today, called “Holocaust”, the Nazi attempt to kill all Jews under their control. Mass murder of Jews and “undesirables” direct result of Nazi ideology that considered “Aryans” (white gentiles- Germanic, Nordic and Anglo-Saxon blood) superior
Hitler Preaches Hate The Nazi movement trafficked in hatred and “anti-Semitism” Hitler blamed Jews for all German ills-from communism to inflation to abstract painting- and especially for Germany’s defeat in WWI. Other extremists influenced Hitler’s ideal and shared his prejudices In 1920s Hitler was just another angry voice in Weimar Republic -he offered simplistic answers for the nation’s grave economic, political and social troubles. -by 1933 had become chancellor of Germany
Nazis Begin the Persecution Persecution starts: 1.Starts economically - Hitler urges boycott of Jewish owned businesses - Jews were barred from jobs in civil service, banking, and stock exchange, law, journalism, and medicine moved to a broader legal persecution - Nuremburg Laws (named for the city that served as spiritual center of Nazism) a. denied German citizenship to Jews b. Jews forced to wear yellow stars with the word “Jude” c. banned marriage betw. Jews and non-Jews d. segregated Jews at every level of society Hitler hints at the “Final Solution of the Jewish Question”
Nazis Begin the Persecution Hitler uses full power of the state in his anti-Semitic campaign -Newspapers printed scandalous attacks against Jews -Children in schools and the Hitler Youth movement taught that “Jews” were“polluting” German society and culture -Comic books contained vile caricatures of Jews
Violence Erupts on Kristallnacht Acts of violence against Jews commonplace November 9, 1938 most serious attack known as “Kristallnacht” (The Night of Broken Glass) -after a Jewish refugee kills German diplomat in Paris, Nazi officials order attacks on Jews in Germany, Austria and Sudetenland -secret police and military destroy more than 1,500 synagogues and 7,500 Jewish owned businesses -kill more than 200 Jews, injure more than 600 -arrest thousands of Jews
Jewish Refugees Face Obstacles
Betw and 1937, about 129,000 Jews fled Germany and Nazi-controlled Austria -notable figures in the scientific and artistic world, including “Albert Einstein” -more would have left but were not generally welcomed in other countries a. Great Depression made jobs scarce, US and other countries barred their doors b. In 1939 ocean liner St. Louis left Germany for Cuba, 900 refugees on board, only 22 received permission to stay in Cuba, US refused all, ship returned to Germany. later, almost all 600 later died in Nazi concentration camps
Hitler Adopts the Final Solution Nothing short of the systematic extermination of all Jews living in the regions controlled by the Third Reich. Today, when a willful annihilation of a racial, political or cultural group genocide.
Nazis Build Concentration Camps
1933 Hitler opened first Nazi concentration camps, where specially designated groups were confined Earliest camps: -Dachau, Sachsenhausen, and Buchenwald Later: -Ravensbruck, not far from Berlin, for female prisoners
Nazi Build Concentration Camps In theory, camps designed not to kill prisoners, but turn them into “useful members” of the Third Reich Imprisoned: - political opponents like labor leaders, socialists, communists - journalists or novelists, ministers or priests, who spoke against Hitler - any Jew or Aryans who had intimate relations with Jews
Nazis Build Concentration Camps Imprisoned: -“undesirables”; Gypsies, Jehovahs’ Witnesses, homosexuals, beggars, drunkards, conscientious objectors, the physically disabled, and people with mental illness Camp Administrators tattooed numbers on arms, dressed prisoners in vertically striped uniforms with triangular insignias -Red were political prisoners -Pink were homosexuals -Yellow were Jews -Purple were Jehovahs’ Witness Inside the wall, no real restraints on sadistic guards -they tortured and killed with no fear of reprisals -death by starvation and disease an everyday occurrence
Nazis Build Concentration Camps Prisoners subjected to: -bogus experiments on oxygen deprivation -hypothermia -effects of altitude -bodies mutilated without anesthesia Thousands died agonizing deaths, including 5,000 mentally and physically disabled children
Millions Are Murdered in Death Camps Nazis gain control of large territories, home to millions of Jews, from the invasion of Poland and Soviet Union Under Nazi rule, Jews in Warsaw, Lodz, and other Polish cities forced to live in crowded, walled ghettos. Additional concentration camps also constructed in Poland and Eastern Europe
Millions Are Murdered in Death Camps At first, the murder of Jews were random (arbitrary) After Wannsee Conf. in January 1942 decision made to move toward Hitler’s “Final Solution” Reinhard Heydrich, SS leader, known as “the man with an iron heart” outlined a plan to exterminate 11,000,000 Jews Minutes of the meeting never use the word “kill”, but the goal was d\definitely understood Many concentration camps designated death camp, esp. in Poland Auschwitz in southern Poland was the largest Other camps: Treblinka,Maidenek, Sobibor, Belsee,and Chelmno
Million Are Murdered, cont Nazis forced prisoners: -into death chambers, pumped in CO -Crammed into shower-like facilities, released insecticide Zyklon B -in some camps, shot hundreds of thousands prisoners Nazi “Action Groups” followed army into Eastern Europe shot several million Jews and buried them in ditches, In fully functioning camps, bodies further desecrated: -human fat turned into soap -human hair woven into wigs, slippers and mattresses -cash, gold fillings, wedding rings stripped from victims -bodies thrown into crematoriums By 1945, about 6 million Jews murdered, but not only victims; 5 million other lay dead, including 2 million non- Jewish Poles Survivors live with nightmares, guilt and sorrow, but determined to rebuild lives in US, Israel and elsewhere.
The Allies and the Holocaust Inevitable question- Could the Holocaust been prevented? Could the nations in the democratic West-esp. Britain, France, & US intervened at some point and stopped the slaughter. No simple answers. Many people today believe the West could have done more than it did.
Early Response Was Weak Before the war: 1.US (and other countries) could have relaxed immigration policy -State Department at first made conscious effort to block Jewish immigration - later commentators gave possible reason a. Anti-Semitism b. Apathy c. Preoccupation with the problems of the Great Depression d. A tendency to underestimate Hitler’s genocidal plans
American Government Takes Action Once war starts; news of mass killings filter West By end of 1942, US issues statement acknowledging Jews being taken to Poland and killed April 1943, British and US officials host “Bermuda Conference”; discuss possibility Of rescuing surviving Jews from Europe; not concrete action taken Early 1944, FDR began to respond to reports -establishes “War Refugee Board” (worked with Red Cross to save thousands of Eastern European Jews esp. from Romania & Hungary. -tragically, few were saved Soviets were closest to death camps -Stalin showed no concern Britain and US -expressed sympathy -but resources and strategy focused on defeating Hitler, not stopping his genocide campaign
American Government Takes Action Cont: Could have bombed rail lines to death camps, but these were not military targets War Department official told Refugee Board that bombing rail line “could be executed only by the diversion of considerable air support essential to the success of our forces now engaged in decisive operations elsewhere” US also refused to pressure countries within Nazi sphere of influence to stop transporting Jews to Germany
Allied Soldiers Liberate the Camps For most part, the enormity of the Nazi crimes became real when soldiers began to liberate the concentration camps When saw piles of bodies, warehouses of hair, jewelry, ash from crematoriums, etc; realized evil more than a distraction Even hardened soldiers were unprepared for what they saw; stunned beyond belief Americans had an outpouring of sympathy and longing to help victims; many survivors found temporary or permanent homes in US
American Soldiers Liberate Camps Revelation of the Holocaust increased demand and support for an independent Jewish homeland 1948 the Jewish community in Palestine proclaimed the State of Israel President Truman immediately recognizes the new nation - US became perhaps the staunchest ally of new Jewish State