Anti-Semitism And The Holocaust

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The Holocaust was the genocide of Jewish people from 1941 to 1945 under the Nazi-German regime. The Holocaust was the product of a very long history of anti-Semitism. Anti-Semitism did not begin with the Nazi 's. Jews have been the target of persecution for a very long time and the roots of anti-Semitism dig deep. That being said, anti-Semitism did become more wide spread after Hitler came to power in 1933. Hitler 's goal was to create a pure Aryan race and the could not be done with Jewish or Polish people around. The course of the Holocaust and Nazi occupation of Poland came shortly after Hitlers rise to power. The Holocaust began with the invasion of Poland in 1939 which was the beginning to WWII. The German occupation of Poland lasted …show more content…
After Hitler came to power in 1933 there was a sequence of events that were ultimately the precursors to the Holocaust. Kristallnact was one of these events. After Kristallnact, “The Night of Broken Glass” where thousand of Jewish synagogues and Jewish businesses were destroyed, Jews saw the writing on the wall and many of them fled the country. As Crowe explains, Kristallnacht was “an anti-Semitic reign of terror that forever transformed Nazi policy towards the Jews” (145). Another precursor to the Holocaust was Hitler 's invasion of the Sudetenland and take over of the rest of Czechoslovakia. After he took over Czechoslovakia it was clear that Poland was going to be his next target. His invasion of Poland was enabled by the Molotov-Ribbentrop Pact. The Molotov-Ribbentrop Pact was a secret Nazi-Soviet pact of non aggression. This pact was signed on August 23rd 1939, just a week before Germany invaded Poland. The pact allowed Germany to attack Poland, and Poland was divided in half between Germany and the Soviet …show more content…
On October 26th, 1939 Hans Frank was appointed a Generalgouverneur of the General Government in occupied Poland. Frank mandated that Jews ten years of age and older wear an white armband with the Star of David on it, and all things Jewish had to be marked with the Star of David as well. Frank also administered a “decreed that all Jews between twelve and sixty were obligated to work two-year terms in a forced-labor camp” (Crowe 167). Hoping that this would give the German 's cheep labor. In November 1939, Jewish assets were frozen. Jews could not get into their bank accounts and they were only allowed to keep $625 cash with them which “made it impossible for Jews to engage in economic activities” (Gutman 1158). Living conditions got worse when Jews were stripped of their property, homes, and businesses. Nazi 's took Jewish families belonging with out giving them any compensation, so the Jews basically lost everything. Also on November 28th 1939 Frank released his own version of the Judenrat. As stated by Gutman, “the Judenrat served as the German authorities main instrument for implementing their policy on the Jews” (1157). The Judenrat supervised and operated their own communities or ran the ghettos. The Judenrat was responsible for many tough decision when running the ghettos as will be discussed

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