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Many people have been blamed with causing the Holocaust, from Hitler to the people of Germany. However, all of these parties can be divided into two groups: Leadership and

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Introduction

CHRIST'S HOSPITAL UPPER FORTH Mock GCSE Coursework Summer 2003 THE HOLOCAUST Question Three- Many people have been blamed with causing the Holocaust, from Hitler to the people of Germany. However, all of these parties can be divided into two groups: Leadership and "Ordinary" people. The main groups I will look at will be in Germany, mainly the German government and ordinary German people. The hatred of Jews dates back hundreds of years. Jews were slaughtered in there thousands during the 16th Centaury, and were seen as a general menace. So, there has always been some kind of anti-semitic view in Europe, especially the central part. There was also a very large hatred of Jews within the German Christian Church. The Christian church saw Jews as the murderer of their saviour and as such, was not fond of any Jewish people. The hatred between the two religions contributed greatly to the hatred of Jews in general in Germany. The main blame for the holocaust has come to fall, fairly obviously on Adolph Hitler and his Generals including, Goring, Himmler and Heydrich. Hitler is portrayed as having envisaged and planned the Final Solution from when he came to power until he died in 1945. Hitler's fervent anti-semistism played a huge part in the persecution of Jews during World War II. The Jews were frequently referred to in Hitler's autobiography "Mein Kampf" and Hitler had made plain his hated for them. ...read more.

Middle

He was also the mastermind behind the organisation that led to the Holocaust. It was Heydrich who chaired and lead the meeting at Wannsee where the decision was taken to eradicate the Jews from Europe. He was a devoted Nazi who pursued his anti-Semitism with zeal. He was often expected to be Hitler's replacement after Hitler died. Heydrich and Himmler played a very important part in developing the ideas for the Holocaust and also, using their leadership of the Political police and the SS respectively, their jobs were always very close to the actual killing of Jews, mainly in Germany itself. The SS was also responsible for the brutality in the death camps and in Russia during Operation Barbarossa. These were two men who were deeply involved in the conceiving and execution of the Holocaust. It was not only Hitler and his other psychopathic companions who contributed to the Holocaust, but ordinary people as well. In a way, the way the ordinary people of Germany and the occupied countries contributed to the Holocaust was even more disturbing that the contribution of Hitler and his Generals. This type of people in Germany saw the savagery of the concentrations and death camps and did nothing to stop them. The same happened in the Axis occupied countries. When Germany invaded France, they demanded for 10 000 Jews to be taken to the concentration camps in Poland, the French government actually gave them 100 000. ...read more.

Conclusion

We are again facing this problem at present with the division over the acceptance of asylum seekers into this country. At that time Britain and America could have accepted a lot more Jews but chose not to. Again, although this contributed to a small percentage of the deaths it is not really a big enough number to think of it as a major effect. All of these events were very significant in the disastrous massacre that was the Holocaust, but some more than others. Through all of this evidence, I believe that blame for the Holocaust ultimately lies in the German leadership and government system. The Holocaust was initiated by them and as such was propelled by them. They however, were not the only culprits. The deceitfulness and complete inhumanity of the German people could rival the psychopathic-ness of the German government. The willingness to turn a blind eye to something happening at the end of your roads, or telling an SS officer about a Jew in your road was just not acceptable. So from this, I can conclude, that although the Government and leaders in German were mainly responsible for the Holocaust, the German people themselves played a huge part in helping them and turning a blind eye. As I said in my introduction, the historical anti-semitism of the world, and Europe in particular would have contributed to the Holocaust, but really it just added to the German governments role, and would not have been a huge party in the Holocaust itself. ...read more.

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