The way of living for Jewish Children changed for the worse when the Holocaust struck Eastern Europe. The steadily rising Socialist Workers' Party (Nazis) that started in the early nineteen thirties would eventually lead to genocide. The Nazis believed that Jews were corrupting society, and that they had plans to take over the world in the near future. Hitler, the Fuhrer of the Nazi Party, had a long range plan called 'The Final Solution' which meant the eventual annihilation of the Jewish race. Hitler made his ideas clear when he stated 'Today I am going to play the prophet. If international Jewry should succeed in...plunging Europe into a world war, the result shall not be...a victory of Judaism but the annihilation of the Jews of Europe.' (Rogasky, 34). Hitler had created his own race called the 'Aryan race' which was composed of people with pure German blood. This race was the base of all his ideals. If you didn't belong to this race, you didn't belong on this planet. Although the Jews were the most persecuted race, Gypsies and many other non-Aryan races were also persecuted.
The first step of Hitler's 'Final Solution' was the gathering of Jews. Once captured from their homes, they were taken to places called ghettos. Ghettos were fenced in communities where the Jews could be held under supervision of the Nazis. The ghettos were over populated and the quarters were small. Anywhere from two to four families would share a room no larger than thirty by thirty feet. Many of the people that lived in the ghettos died of hunger and disease. The Nazis intentionally deprived the Jews of food to weaken and kill them. The Jews were not offered
heat, or even clothes. On rare occasions, the Jews were offered a shirt or pants that belonged to
the previous inhabitants.
The next step of Hitler's plan was the deportation of the Jews from the ghettos to the extermination and concentration camps. The only difference between an extermination and a concentration camp was the fact that concentration camps were for working and extermination camps were for killing. The Jews of the ghettos were piled into small train cars where they would spend hours - even days, traveling to a camp. The children, after being piled into the train cars, were usually the ones to be killed during the trip. They would sometimes get trampled on due to their size. If they weren't trampled, they starved. Once at an extermination camp, the victims underwent a 'choosing process' where the weak, elderly, handicapped, and young were killed and where the strong, middle-aged men (and sometimes women) were kept to work for a couple months before they too were killed. The children, who were the most innocent, were most often killed just for the fact that they were young and unfit to do the work required by the Nazis. Doctors, such as the infamous Josef Mengele of Auschwitz, would carefully examine each individual, looking for signs of fatigue or sickness. If the doctor...