2 Background Info.Goal of Nazi Germany: extermination of all Jews in EuropeOut of 8.3 millions Jews, 6 million were killedOther victims of Nazi Germany:GypsiesChristians suspected of Jewish ancestryHomosexualsHandicappedAnyone opposing the NazisAnyone considered “inferior” to the Aryan raceTotal estimated # of people killed: million
3 How it began Centuries of Christian anti-Semitism had already existed Hitler became dictator of Germanybegan the war against the JewsEconomic hardships in Germany were blamed on the Jews
4 "What does anti-Semitism have to do with socialism "What does anti-Semitism have to do with socialism? I would put the question this way: What does the Jew have to do with socialism? Socialism has to do with labor. When did one ever see him working instead of plundering, stealing and living from the sweat of others? As socialists we are opponents of the Jews because we see in the Hebrews the incarnation of capitalism, of the misuse of the nation's goods.” - Joseph Goebbels—head of propaganda
6 Initial treatment of the Jews Jewish businesses were boycotted and vandalizedFired from jobs in government and universitiesLost citizenship and all rightsKristallnacht—Nov. 9,10, 1938—Nazi attack on Jewish homes, businesses and synagoguesForbidden to intermarry with GermansEvicted from their homes and forced to live in the ghettos
10 “None of us who rose to any high rank in the Hitler Youth could say that we had a clear conscience. All of us, perhaps unknowingly, had looked the other way, preferring not to know the truth. Sadly, now, we re the other part of the Holocaust, the generation burdened with the responsibility for Auschwitz. That is our life sentence for having been the enthusiastic followers of Adolf Hitler.” Alfons Heck, from Parallel Journeys
11 1935: Two Jewish pupils are humiliated at their school and before their classmates. The inscription reads, "The Jew is our greatest enemy! Beware of the Jew!
12 First they came for the Jews and I did not speak out - because I was not a Jew. Then they came for the communists and I did not speak out - because I was not a communist. Then they came for the trade unionists and I did not speak out - because I was not a trade unionist. Then they came for me and there was no one left to speak out for me. Martin Niemöller –wrote after imprisoned at Dachau, a pastor in the German Confessing Church who spent seven years in a concentration camp.
22 The concentration/death camps Shipped from the ghettos to camps in cattle wagonsHard physical labor, meager rations, brutality and abuseThe “Final Solution” (plan to exterminate the Jews)At the camps, the Jews were packed into chambersA gas called “Cyclon B” was dispersedBodies were burned in a crematory
24 “How do you teach events that defy knowledge, experiences that go beyond imagination? How do you tell children, big and small, that society could lose its mind and start murdering its own soul and its own future? How do you unveil horrors without offering at the same time some measure of hope? Hope in what? In whom? In progress, in science and literature and God?” ~ Elie Wiesel
31 An American officer’s description of Ohrdruf, the first camp liberated by the Americans “As we burst into the camp and spread out, I saw in front of me a row of wooden one-story barracks… One of my men came for me, ‘You’d better come with me.’ His voice was serious. I followed him across the yard to a building…The windows were all sealed up. Outside… eight automobiles, all up on blocks… The exhausts were piled in through the wall of that building. We went inside the door. In the room… there was human excretion, vomit, urine, blood all over the room. I did not understand.”
32 Con’t. “And there were showerheads and faucets, all over the wall Con’t. “And there were showerheads and faucets, all over the wall. One of my men called out to me. He said: ‘What the hell’s going on here? There is no water.’ We entered the back room filled with benches and tables. And on one of the tables there were thousands of gold wedding rings… piles of human teeth with gold fillings… It was obvious that someone was there counting them. We went outside into the yard. In front of me I could see human hair. There were piles of boots, shoes, suitcases, eyeglasses. To my left were four-wheel hay wagons and two-wheel pushcarts. These wagons contained nude bodies… men, women and children, even babies. All nude, all dead, all piled as high as they could basically pile them.”
33 The end of WWII Germany was defeated in May of 1945 The survivors: Most emigrated to Palestine (now Israel)The State of Israel was established as a Jewish homeland in 1948Others came to the U.S. or any country that would accept them