A. Plan of Investigation
The investigation explores why the Warsaw Ghetto Uprising was the most important ghetto resistance during the Holocaust. In order to analyze why the Warsaw Ghetto Uprising was significant, research has to be done to study the elements of the Warsaw ghetto that made it successful. The main sources for this investigation are Ghetto Fights: Warsaw 1941-43 by Marek Edelman because it is a study to examine the political and ideological background of the Warsaw Rising and Daring to Resist: Jewish Defiance in the Holocaust by David Engel because it covers uprisings in other ghettos than in Warsaw.
B. Summary of Evidence
Approximately six million Jews were killed by the Nazi regime during the Holocaust. When Hitler was appointed Chancellor of Germany on January 30th, 1933 there were 566,000 Jewish people living in Germany. The first concentration camp, Dachau, was created on March 22, 1933. Other concentration camps to be created during this time include Buchenwald and Ravensbruck. The first people to be arrested were Communists, labor leaders, and Communists. From 1933-1938 Jews gradually have their rights stripped away beginning with not being able to own land to not being considered citizens according to the Nuremberg Race Laws. Attacks on Jewish businesses and synagogues began on November 9th, 1938 when over the course of two days over 7,000 Jewish businesses and 250 synagogues were destroyed by Germans. Also, Jews were arrested and killed while these tragedies occurred. This series of events is known as Kristallnacht. It marks the beginning of the extreme discrimination and eventually genocide of the Jewish population.
Ghettos were enclosed city areas in which the Germans concentrated the Jewish population. The Germans created 1,000 ghettos in the Soviet Union and Poland. The first ghetto created during World War II was in Piotrków Trybunalski, Poland in October 1939 (Adams). Jews were forced to live in horrible conditions. There was major overcrowding with multiple families living in one apartment being common. Diseases were spread quickly and easily. Also, they were only allowed to purchase a small amount of food leaving many under starving conditions. Electricity and plumbing often broke down leaving those living in the Ghetto extremely unsanitary and susceptible to freezing temperatures. The Jews were kept here to make them weak and easy to transport to concentration camps.
The Warsaw Ghetto was established in October 1940. It was the largest ghetto with over 400,000 Jews to start with. From the Warsaw Ghetto there were many different fates for the Jews including being deported to labor or concentration camps, killed, and starving to death. The Jewish Combat Organization and the Jewish Military Union were underground resistance organizations created to make a difference in the horrible conditions of the ghetto. On January 19, 1943 German SS and police tried to recommence sending Jews to labor and concentration camps...