Victims holo - German Holocaust Victims When one thinks...

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German Holocaust 4/24/2010 Victims When one thinks about the tragedies brought on by the Holocaust, they often think of the victims, and the hardships they endured. When one thinks of the victims, they think of the Jewish people, who were persecuted by the Nazi Party. Jews were victims of the Holocaust, but many other groups were targeted as well. All of Europe, and throughout the world people were affected by the wartime environment, and by the Holocaust. Many people had family members and friends involved, and saw first hand the repercussions it brought. It has been debated by many of who deserves to be counted as a victim of the Holocaust. According to the Merriam-Webster dictionary, a victim is one that is acted on and usually adversely affected by a force or agent and subjected to oppression, hardship, or mistreatment. Anyone who was affected by the harsh brutality, and merciless killings under the power of the Nazi regime in the Holocaust should be counted as a victim. The first victims that come to mind when thinking of the Holocaust are the Jewish people. Jews were persecuted purely because they practice Judaism. They were seen as a different race, no matter where they were born or ethnicity, “In the eyes of the anti- Semite, the Jews therefore became a “race”” (Hilberg, pg 37). When Adolf Hitler started to rise as a leader in the National Socialist German Worker’s party, the Nazi’s, he began to institute anti-Semitic actions. For example, Hitler took part in the Beer Hall Putsch, a march on Berlin in 1923. Here Hitler was arrested for treason, and while on prison he wrote Mein Kampf, a novel of his struggles in life and political platform. In Mein Kampf,
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Hitler discusses the Jews, and speaks of wanting to eliminate all Jews. Describing it as “…a holy war against the Jews…” (Graml, pg 37). Hitler seized power in 1933 through the Enabling Act in March of 1933, and with this power anti-Semitic policies were soon passed. Laws were passed excluding Jews from civil service, attending a university, and certain professions. Then in September of 1935 the Nuremberg Laws were passed which clarified ambiguity about who was considered Jewish, and applied more restrictions on Jewish people. Jews were forced to wear the star of David, many lost their businesses, and had to move from their homes in to ghettos that were small, cramped and provided awful living conditions, “…few damp, dark, and dirty streets into which 4,700 human creatures had been packed tightly” (Hilberg, Pg 27). Eventually from here, Jews were taking to concentration camps and death camps, where they were forced to do hard labor, and live in harsh conditions. These camps usually resulted in immediate death at arrival by a gas chamber, eventual starvation, and disease. Around six million Jews died because of the Holocaust. Since they were persecuted so heavily, and endured so many hardships
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Victims holo - German Holocaust Victims When one thinks...

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