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Section 3: The Holocaust

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1 Section 3: The Holocaust
Why it matters now: The violence against the Jews during the Holocaust led to the founding of Israel after WWII Main Idea: During the Holocaust, Hitler’s Nazis killed 6 million Jews and 5 million other “non-Aryans”

2 Setting the Stage As part of their vision for Europe, the Nazis proposed a new racial order: Germanic people, or the Aryans, were the master race All other people, particularly Jewish people, were inferior  This racism eventually led to the Holocaust: the systematic mass slaughter of the Jews and other groups judged inferior by the Nazis

3 The Holocaust Begins Hitler tapped into a hatred for Jews that had deep roots in European history For generations, many Europeans, including Germans, had blamed Jews as the cause of their failures and tragedies. In time, the Nazis made the targeting of Jews a government policy

4 Anti-Semitism throughout history
Judaism was the first monotheistic religion: Jewish people were the first to believe in only one god In Ancient Egypt, Jewish people were seen as a threat to the system because Egyptians believed the pharaohs were gods, and Jewish people would not accept this In the epoch of the Roman Empire, the Romans also believed in many gods and treated the Caesar as a god, so they had issue with the Jewish people that would not worship the Caesar. Early Christians blamed the Jews for killing Jesus. They also saw the Jews as arrogant and evil for not accepting Jesus as the son of god. During the middle ages, when the Catholic Church was in power, they continued to teach people that it had been the Jews who killed Jesus, and that the Jews were evil (anti-Christ) for not accepting Jesus. Jewish people were blamed for things that went wrong such as murders, the Black Plague, etc. All these myths and beliefs carried into later years, the Nazis took that anti-Semitism further with the Holocaust

5 Social Darwinism Anti-Semitism existed before Hitler, he simply tapped into that hatred to gain support for his racist ideas Another idea that already existed before Hitler that he took advantage of was Social Darwinism Darwin established that in nature, the fittest survive and the weak die off Some people applied that concept to humans and separated the human race into races; with only one being the fittest, or superior one. Hitler thought that was the Aryan (Germanic) race.

6 The Holocaust Begins In 1935, the Nazi government passed the Nuremberg Laws: deprived Jews of German citizenship and forbade marriages between Jews and non-Jews Kristallnacht: means “night of the broken glass” in German. The attack on Jewish homes, businesses, and synagogues by Germans on the night of November 9, 1938

7 Nuremberg Laws Kristallnacht

8 The Holocaust Begins Some Jews realized the violence against them in Germany was bound to increase, so by 1939 many German Jews had fled to other countries. They were refugees. At first, Hitler favored emigration as the solution to “the Jewish problem.” However, other countries eventually stopped admitting refugees. Since he couldn’t get rid of the Jews by emigration, Hitler’s next plan was to put them in ghettos: segregated Jewish areas. They hoped that the Jews inside would starve to death or die of disease.

9 The “Final Solution” Hitler thought starvation or disease were not killing the Jewish people fast enough, so he decided to take more direct action The new plan was called the “Final Solution:” a program of genocide, which is to systematically kill an entire group of people. Genocide: systematic killing of a group of people Final Solution: Nazi program to commit genocide against the Jews.

10 The “Final Solution” The Killings Begin: Units of the SS moved from town to town (in Germany and all conquered territories) to hunt down Jews. They rounded them up and shot them Jews not killed in this manner were rounded up and sent to concentration camps: slave-labor prisons. Prisoners worked as slaves for the SS or German businesses; they were beaten or killed by guards; they were scarcely fed anything


12 The “Final Solution” The Final Stage: extermination camps
By 1942, the Nazis built extermination camps: camps for mass murder of the Jews These camps had gas chambers that could kill as many as 6,000 human beings in one day An estimated 6 million Jewish people died in the Holocaust Study chart on page 505 of textbook Fewer than 4 million survived Help from non-Jews

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