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Nazi Germany and its allies invaded the Soviet Union on June 22, 1941. They quickly conquered large expanses of Soviet territory. German forces waged a “war of annihilation” against the Soviet Union and its peoples, killing millions of civilians. However, the Soviet armed forces eventually pushed the German military back and finally conquered Berlin in spring 1945. Often referred to as the “eastern front,” the German-Soviet theater of war was the largest and deadliest of World War II.
From July 1941-May 1944, the SS camp at Trawniki had several purposes. It is best known as the training site for auxiliary police guards used in Nazi killing centers. Learn more.
Beginning in 1933, the Nazi regime harassed and destroyed lesbian communities and networks that had developed during the Weimar Republic.
The Mauthausen concentration camp was established following the Nazi incorporation of Austria in 1938. Learn about the harsh conditions in the camp.
Between 1933 and 1945, Nazi Germany and its allies established more than 44,000 camps and other incarceration sites (including ghettos). The perpetrators used these locations for a range of purposes, including forced labor, detention of people deemed to be "enemies of the state," and mass murder. Millions of people suffered and died or were killed. Among them was the Herzogenbusch main camp (also known as Vught).
Former Mufti of Jerusalem Hajj Amin al-Husayni was an exiled political leader who sought an alliance with the Axis Powers. Learn about his wartime propaganda efforts.
President Barack Obama visited Buchenwald concentration camp in Germany on June 5, 2009. In a speech at the site, he repudiated Holocaust denial. Browse transcript.
Learn more about the shared foundational element of eugenics on the history of racial antisemitism in Germany and racism in the United States
Learn about conditions and forced labor in Dora-Mittelbau, the center of an extensive network of forced-labor camps for the production of V-2 missiles and other weapons.
The Nazi regime carried out a campaign against male homosexuality and persecuted gay men between 1933 and 1945.
We would like to thank Crown Family Philanthropies and the Abe and Ida Cooper Foundation for supporting the ongoing work to create content and resources for the Holocaust Encyclopedia. View the list of all donors.