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The Holocaust Essay

1213 words - 5 pages

1. Simply put, the Holocaust was the annihilation of six million Jews by the Nazi regime during World War II. In 1933 approximately nine million Jews lived in the 21 countries of Europe that would be occupied by Germany during the war and by 1945 two out of every three European Jews had been killed.The number of children killed during the Holocaust is not clear meaning that the statistics for the tragic fate of children who died will never be known. Some historians' guesses have ranged as high as 1.5 million murdered children.The European Jews were the major victims of the Holocaust. But Jews were not the only group singled out for persecution by Hitler's Nazi regime. As many as one and a half million Gypsies, 250,000 mentally or physically disabled persons, and more than three million Soviet prisoners of war also fell victim to Nazi genocide. Jehovah's Witnesses, homosexuals, Social Democrats, Communists, partisans and trade unionists, and other undesirables were also victims of the hate and aggression carried out by the Nazis.On January the 30th, Adolf Hitler was appointed Chancellor of Germany. By March 22nd concentration camps had been setup including one named Dachau. April 26th saw the creation of the Gestapo and on May 10th all Jewish written books, political descendants, and other not approved by the state were burnt by the Gestapo. October 28th, 17000 Polish Jews living in Germany expelled; Poles refuse to admit them and 8000 were stranded in the frontier village of Zbaszyn. Jews in German-Occupied Poland were forced to wear an arm band or a yellow star on November the 23rd. More concentration camps were erected at Auschwitz on May 20th. November 16 saw the Warsaw Ghetto sealed ultimately containing 500,000 people. February 1st saw the German authorities rounding up Polish Jews for transfer to the Warsaw Ghetto. July 22nd, started the deportations of Jews to killing centers from Belgium, Croatia, France, the Netherlands, and Poland; armed resistance by Jews in Ghettos of Kletzk, Kremenets, Lachva, Mir, and Tuchin. April 19th, the Jewish underground fights back until early June. October 14, begins the liquidation of Jews in Minsk, Vilna and Riga. April 30th, Hitler commits suicide and on May the 8th, Germany surrenders meaning the end to the Third Reich.2. Although the Holocaust may not have been the first atrocity nor the last, it doesn't mean that it cant be rated as one of mankind's worst acts in history. However, the benchmarks which we now use to determine our living standards are also without doubt changing. Appalling acts are still carried out around the world, but not so much in the form of massacres, mass executions, slavery and other raw forms of cruelty. It's happening through more complicated means such as global economics, religious ideologies, greed and corruption - the cost is not the noticeable loss of human lives (like earlier times), but inconspicuous loss of peace of mind and morality of a different kind. Having never...

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