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Why did Status and Position of Jews Worsen in Years 1933-39 and in Occupied Europe 1939-45?

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Introduction

Why did Status and Position of Jews Worsen in Years 1933-39 and in Occupied Europe 1939-45? In 1933, Hitler was the head of the Nazi party. He was anti-Semitic, and his aims and ideology were to remove Jews from German society as a part of purifying Germany. He became the Chancellor of Germany in 1933, but he did not have full power over Germany, as Hindenburg was still alive. With the death of Hindenburg, Hitler was now the leader of Germany. He had achieved power in Germany and now he was able to implement his ideas to German people. He started off with increasing the level of Anti-Semitism in Germany. He made people boycott Jewish shops, but gradually the Anti-Semitism worsened and the Nazis passed laws to try to isolate Jews in German society. The Nuremburg Laws in 1935 was the peak of Anti-Semitism in Germany in this period. Some of the laws said that Jews were no longer to be German citizens, Jews cannot marry non-Jews, and that Jews cannot have sexual relations with non-Jews. ...read more.

Middle

These triumphs had increased the Nazis' popularity and their confidence. On the night of 9-10 November 1938, Josef Goebbels, the Nazi propaganda minister organised a violent outburst known as 'Kristallnacht' (The night of the broken glass). Whilst the police just stood and watched, Nazis burned down synagogues, and broke into Jewish homes throughout Germany and Austria, terrorising and beating men, women and children. Ninety-one Jews were murdered and over 20,000 men were arrested and taken to concentration camps. Afterwards, the Jewish community was fined one billion Reichsmarks to pay for the damage. After Kristallnacht, Jewish businesses were expropriated, private employers were urged to sack Jewish employees, and offices were set up to speed emigration. Imprisoned Jews could buy freedom if they promised to leave the country, abandoning their assets. By the outbreak of war in September 1939, half of Germany's 500,000 Jews had fled, as had many Jews from Austria and the German-occupied parts of Czechoslovakia. ...read more.

Conclusion

From this action we can see that the Nazis made a decision to be genocidal. Their decision changed from killing all Soviet Jews to exterminating all European Jews. At the Wannsee conference in 1942, they discussed how they would co-ordinate all relevant departments and set out aims that showed how they could exterminate all Jews in Europe. What we do not know, though, is whether the Nazis meant from the beginning for their Anti-Semitism to ever go this far. There is a current debate to whether the Nazis planned this from the beginning, or whether they just got a bit carried away and one thing led to another. They eventually decided of using the gassing method, as this was the most efficient and it did not harm their soldiers mentally who had to kill Jews. The Nazis made their Death Camps very efficient. They had the capacity to kill, and to dispose of corpses on a mass scale. The reason why the genocide worked was because people were willing to kill because of Hitler's success in making Germany a better country, and that this was all disguised by the War. ...read more.

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