The holocaust was the slaughter of 6 million Jewish people. Also gypsies, homosexuals, Jehovah’s witnesses, communists, mentally ill, physically disabled people and Slavs were all murdered in Hitler’s ‘Final Solution’. It’s so crucial to remember the holocaust not to only pay respects to the victims but to remind humans we can stoop so low. It was a breakdown of civilization and human values. My essay will cover anti Semitism, the persecution of Jews in Nazi Germany, the ghettoes, and concentration camps. Also how we haven’t completely learnt from this atrocity, that genocides, persecution and racism have happened since WW2 and still happen today all around the world.
Anti- Semitism wasn't exclusive to the Nazis or Germany; anti- Semitism has existed for hundreds of years. As the Black Death epidemics spread across Europe in the mid-14th century, destroying more than a half of the population, Jews were used as scapegoats. Rumors spread that they caused the disease by deliberately poisoning wells. Hundreds of Jewish communities were destroyed by violence, in particular in the Iberian Peninsula and in the Germanic Empire. Anti Semitism and racism in general is still around today and I’m sure it will do in the future. It is major a flaw in humans, that we can’t all accept that as individuals we are different but as a race we are all exactly the same. During WW2 Britain didn't want to accept Jewish refugees despite the horrible conditions that they were living in Germany. Just because they didn't want Jewish people in their country, which meant by rejecting them they were condemning them to years of pain and suffering.
Hitler wanted a greater Germany (Grossdeutches) for himself and the people of Germany. However the people of Germany could only consist of strong blond haired and blue-eyed people. The Aryan race or the master race as they called themselves. You had to have no Jewish parents or grandparents and it was forbidden to marry any one Jewish as they saw them as inferior or sub human. Hitler saw Jews as a problem or a pest invading Germany and diluting pure German blood. So he made life unbearable for the Jews to force them to leave Germany. However the discrimination couldn't be aimed at all Jews because they thought there was a lack of method of defining who was Jewish and who wasn't. The enactment of the laws identifying who was Jewish made it easier for the Nazis to enforce restriction of basic rights of German Jews.
The Nuremberg Laws stated that people with four German grandparents were "German or kindred blood", while people were classified as Jews if they had three or four Jewish grandparents. A person with one or two Jewish grandparents was called a Mischling, a crossbreed, of "mixed blood". These laws denied Jews and other non-Aryans of German citizenship and prohibited sexual relations and marriages between Germans and Jews. On 26 November 1935, the laws were extended to "Gypsies, Negroes or their bastard offspring”. The Nuremberg Laws ultimately stopped Jews from participating in German life.
Kristallnacht or crystal night was given its name due to sheer amount of broken glass from destroyed Jewish businesses and shops. During kristallnacht hundreds of synagogues weren’t burnt down, 91 Jews were killed and countless more carted off to the concentration camps, like animals shipped for slaughter.
Life became worse for anyone who Hitler thought was inferior when in 1939, the Nazis invaded Poland like agreed in the secret Nazi-Soviet pact that stated Russia would take half of Poland and Germany the other half. However in doing so Britain was brought into the war because they had agreed to defend Poland if they were ever to be invaded.
Poland was also home to many Jewish people and this led to the establishment of the ghettos. The Ghettos are essentially huge open-air prisons; they are an area cut off from the rest of society where thousands of Jewish people…