• Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

No Hitler: No Holocaust How far is this statement by the historian Michael Marrus accurate and comprehensive in attributing responsibility for the Final Solution?

Extracts from this document...


"No Hitler: No Holocaust" How far is this statement by the historian Michael Marrus accurate and comprehensive in attributing responsibility for the Final Solution? One of the greatest tragedies of the twentieth century is undoubtedly the mass annihilation of the Jews during the Holocaust, with over six million being killed between 1939 and 1945. But for whom can be held responsible for the Final Solution and therefore the Holocaust? Marrus's quote implies that without Hitler the Holocaust would not have occurred and post 1945 there has been a convenience to blaming Hitler also. However there are also other individuals and groups, such as the Nazi elites, The SS and Einzatzgruppen and the German population, who to their own extent could be held responsible for the Holocaust too and therefore the full accuracy of this statement can be opposed. Context of the Nazi State plays a huge role in assessing the full accuracy of this quote, including the Nazi structure, decision making within the State, ideology and cumulative radicalisation. Whilst mentioning context of the Nazi State, Germany during the 1930s faced economic and political problems (post world war 1) and saw a society desperate for structure, allowing a few minorities to suffer for the sake of the nation. Historians differ as to where the responsibility for the Holocaust lies. Intentionalist historians such as Lucy Dawidowicz argue that Hitler planned the extermination of the Jewish people from as early as 1918, and that he personally oversaw its execution. ...read more.


So therefore the elites responsibility can be seen only at an extent as they, although directly involved in most instances, were simply minipulating the state that Hitler was prividing them and were part of a system and process of their time. It could also be argued whether they were doing it at their own free will or because they felt fear within their own position. The Nazi elites full responsibility can be seen again to an extent limited, because they were supported by the SS and Einzatzgruppen. A wide range of German soldiers and officials, were in some way involved in the Holocaust, from units of the SS and the Einzatzgruppen. The SS were and elite group full of enthusiasm and creativeness, and held responsibility within running the camps and extermination centres and though there was no single military unit in charge of the Holocaust, the SS under Himmler was the closest. From the SS came the Einzatzgruppen killing squads who, along with many other achievements, occupied East Europe and often went beyond their given orders. Both groups provided concentration camp guards, ran prison camps, helped form the ghettos and substantially used slave labour, all of which led up to the Holocaust and therefore adds to their part played within the responsibility for the Holocaust. They both also participated directly far more then any other group, including the Wehrmacht, or regular German army. ...read more.


Marrus's quote is not comprehensive but in someways to a certain extent it is accurate. Accurate in a sense that although Hitler was at a distance and indirectly involved in some circumstances, people on the front and directly involved, such as the Nazie elite, the SS and the Einzatzgruppen and ofcourse the German population, although working at their own free will on most occasions were working up to Hitler's ideology and therefore he is responsible. The assessments that have been drawn in this essay from the other groups involved, that could be all held responsible to their own extent, certainly mitigate against Hitler's own responsibility for the Holocaust, however each assessment reflected and linked back to Hitler, providing more evidence of Hitler's slightly higher level of responsibility. On the whole it can be seen that Hiler did not actually originate the details of policy and neither did he play a direct role within the Nazi state, therefore Marrus's quote is not comprehensive in attributing responsibility for the Final Solution. His quote implies total responsibility for Hitler on the debate over the Final Solution when that is clearly not fully accurate as in contradiction to his quote is the evidence of other groups involved within the Holocaust and the views of different historians. In overall judgement, this statement by Marrus is to an extent accurate in attributing responsibility for the Final Solution, yet less comprehensive in doing so. Fiona Crookshank ...read more.

The above preview is unformatted text

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our AS and A Level Modern European History, 1789-1945 section.

Found what you're looking for?

  • Start learning 29% faster today
  • 150,000+ documents available
  • Just £6.99 a month

Not the one? Search for your essay title...
  • Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

See related essaysSee related essays

Related AS and A Level Modern European History, 1789-1945 essays

  1. This essay will examine the rise of anti-Semitism from ancient times to the Holocaust ...

    nations emerged who fought against supposed threats from minority groups living within them. This included the Jews who were seen as aliens and extrinsic. It was against this backdrop that Wilhelm Marr, a German journalist, invented the phrase "anti-Semitism" in the 1870s.

  2. How far was the holocaust a long term plan of nazi racial policy?

    Therefore, Breitman's emphasis on this line may appear to be slightly unfounded. It is clear by the laws and regulations already imposed by the Nazi government that the Jewish financiers could not finance any form of rebellion due to their exclusion from the German economy, where much of their wealth lay.

  1. How far did the achievements of Stalin's economic modernisation programme justify the costs?

    was confessions but these were only given because of threats or ill treatment in prison. Another method of implementing fear was the use of the secret police. Firstly they restricted workers freedom by stopping those workers moving jobs because workers required internal passports and in order to receive one needed to register with the police.

  2. Leni Riefenstahl The Propagandist or Artist? A Historiographical Debate.

    Result * The critical acclaim for Olympia began with the film's premiere on April 20, 1938, in Berlin. It won the Grand Prize at that year's International Film Festival in Venice, where it was cited as "the world's best film of 1938".

  1. Assess the view that the Holocaust was mainly a result of a long term ...

    raises the issue of Hitler's political compromises; particularly the barrier of public opinion to the escalation of anti Jewish measures. Passage C refers to a "variety of constraints" of which "mild racialism" was the strongest initially. "Inconsistencies" in subsequent policy stemmed from the inability to immediate convince a whole society

  2. Causes of show trials + purges of 1930s.

    It provided the opportunity for getting rid of the Kulaks - who, eyes of the communists, hoarded food for their own consumption. This led to pressure on the government to rid the country of this capitalist class. To fall to do so would hold back the progress towards socialism.

  1. Hitlers Germany

    Nazism as rooted largely in socioeconomic conditions associated with capitalism and amenable to Communist treatment, whereas the Anglo-Americans believed that the establishment and acceptance of democratic institutions and practices, combined with major efforts in social rehabilitation, would eventually root out Nazism in a capitalist state.

  2. The Holocaust was the result of Hitlers long held grand design to pursue a ...

    They did not begin a development. They completed it." Social divisions in the Middle Ages fuelled xenophobia and the Jews were held responsible for the persecution and death of Jesus Christ amongst other catastrophes. OWN SOURCE 1 Anti-Semitism - Pope Gregory IX orders the Talmud to be burned A.D. 1239 after a disputation*. Panel - Pedro Berruguete, 15th century.

  • Over 160,000 pieces
    of student written work
  • Annotated by
    experienced teachers
  • Ideas and feedback to
    improve your own work