Presentation on theme: "The Holocaust A Brief Introduction. What was it? The Holocaust took place in Europe between the years of 1933 and 1945. It was Adolf Hitler’s and the."— Presentation transcript:
What was it? The Holocaust took place in Europe between the years of 1933 and 1945. It was Adolf Hitler’s and the Nazi party’s attempt to arrest, displace, and exterminate the Jewish people of Europe. Unfortunately, their attempts were nearly successful.
Six Million Jewish people died during the Holocaust. An additional four million other people died in the concentration camps in Europe.
Why did it happen? Anti-Semitism had existed in Europe since the beginning of Christendom. Progroms and inquisitions in which thousands of Jews were killed occurred during the Middle Ages and the 1600’s.
World War I But to understand the Holocaust one must first understand World War I. World War I took place from 1914-1918. The countries of Europe, along with the United States and Japan, lost a total of 9 million people. For four years, millions died in France, Belgium, and Germany over what finally amounted to a few hundred yards of earth.
The consequences. Germany, Austria, and Turkey lost the war. The monarchies of Germany, Russia, Austria, and the Ottoman Empire (Turkey) collapsed. Germany was financially devastated and spiritually broken.
Adolf Hitler, awarded for courage during the war, blamed Jews and communists for Germany’s loss. In his diaries, he wrote that within weeks of learning of Germany’s loss in November of 1918 he had determined in his mind what must be done. Within months, Hitler and other former soldiers began to form what would become the Nazi party.
In 1933, after years of economic hardships, Hitler’s party gained dominance in Germany. Within weeks Hitler claimed power from his chancellor and the Holocaust, in Germany, began.
In 1938, Hitler’s anti-Jewish policies spread to Austria and Czechoslovakia as Germany lay claim to these countries. 1939 Germany invaded Poland and World War II began. By 1941, all of Europe except neutral Switzerland, had fallen to Nazi control. The policies of the Nazis extended through all of Europe.
At first, the arrests and exterminations were improvised and informal: mass arrests, mass shootings, mass graves. In 1939, however, the extermination became more systematic with the construction of concentration camps across Europe.
The Final Solution In 1941, the Nazis proposed the Final Solution to what they called the Jewish problem. This solution was the systematic and extensive extermination of the Jews in the concentration camps. To accomplish this the Gestapo employed gas chambers, shootings, starvation, and forced labor. The rate of killing reached horrifying rates.
The Casualties 1914-1945 100 Million people died either directly or indirectly from war.
The End In 1945, with the Americans and British advancing from the west and Russia advancing from the east, Germany fell. Hitler committed suicide, and the allied soldiers liberated the camps. What they found horrified them. In the years that followed Jewish survivors immigrated to Israel (formed in 1947), the United States, Canada and other Commonwealth countries.