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  • The United States and the Holocaust

    Article

    Americans had access to reliable information about the Nazi regime’s persecution of Jews as it happened, but most could not imagine that a mass murder campaign was possible. Though most Americans sympathized with the plight of European Jews, assisting refugees and rescuing the victims of Nazism never became a national priority.

    The United States and the Holocaust
  • Pogroms
  • Nazi Racism: An Overview

    Article

    Racism fueled Nazi ideology and policies. The Nazis viewed the world as being divided up into competing inferior and superior races, each struggling for survival and dominance. They believed the Jews were not a religious denomination, but a dangerous non-European “race.” Nazi racism would produce murder on an unprecedented scale.

    Nazi Racism: An Overview
  • Rescue

    Article

    Despite the indifference of most Europeans and the collaboration of others in the murder of Jews during the Holocaust, individuals in every European country and from all religious backgrounds risked their lives to help Jews. Rescue efforts ranged from the isolated actions of individuals to organized networks both small and large.

     

    Rescue
  • World War II in Eastern Europe, 1942–1945
  • Minsk

    Article

    During the Holocaust, the creation of ghettos was a key step in the Nazi process of brutally separating, persecuting, and ultimately destroying Europe's Jews. Ghettos isolated Jews from the non-Jewish population and from other Jewish communities. Living conditions were miserable. Among them was the Minsk ghetto.

    Tags: ghettos
    Minsk
  • Auschwitz

    Article

    The largest of its kind, the Auschwitz camp complex was essential to carrying out the Nazi plan for the "Final Solution." Auschwitz left its mark as one of the most infamous camps of the Holocaust.

    Auschwitz
  • Lublin/Majdanek Concentration Camp: Conditions

    Article

    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 these sites was Majdanek, which had multiple purposes.

    Lublin/Majdanek Concentration Camp: Conditions
  • Chelmno

    Article

    To carry out the mass murder of Europe's Jews, the SS established killing centers devoted exlusively or primarily to the destruction of human beings in gas chambers. Chelmno was among these killing centers. It was the first stationary facility where poison gas was used for the mass murder of Jews. 

    Chelmno
  • Stutthof

    Article

    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 these sites was the Stutthof camp. 

    Tags: camps
    Stutthof
  • Ravensbrück

    Article

    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 these sites was the Ravensbrück camp for women.

    Ravensbrück
  • Euthanasia Program and Aktion T4

    Article

    The goal of the Nazi Euthanasia Program was to kill people with mental and physical disabilities. In the Nazi view, this would cleanse the “Aryan” race of people considered genetically defective and a financial burden to society.

    Euthanasia Program and Aktion T4
  • Kristallnacht

    Article

    On November 9–10, 1938, Nazi leaders unleashed a series of pogroms against the Jewish population in Germany and recently incorporated territories. This event came to be called Kristallnacht (The Night of Broken Glass) because of the shattered glass that littered the streets after the vandalism and destruction of Jewish-owned businesses, synagogues, and homes. 

    Kristallnacht
  • German Foreign Policy, 1933–1945

    Article

    Adolf Hitler came to power with the goal of establishing a new racial order in Europe dominated by the German “master race.” This goal drove Nazi foreign policy, which aimed to: throw off the restrictions imposed by the Treaty of Versailles; incorporate territories with ethnic German populations into the Reich; acquire a vast new empire in Eastern Europe; form alliances; and, during the war, persuade other states to participate in the “final solution.”

    German Foreign Policy, 1933–1945
  • Foundations of the Nazi State

    Article

    Following his appointment as chancellor by President Paul von Hindenburg on January 30, 1933, Adolf Hitler began laying the foundations of a Nazi state based on racist and authoritarian principles. In less than six months, Germany was transformed from a democratic state into a one-party Nazi dictatorship.

    Foundations of the Nazi State
  • Women in the Third Reich

    Article

    German women played a vital role in the Nazi movement, one which far exceeded the Nazi Party’s propaganda that a woman’s place was strictly in the home as mothers and child-bearers. Of the estimated forty million German women in the Reich, some thirteen million were active in Nazi Party organizations that furthered the regime’s goals of racial purity, imperial conquest, and global war. 

    Women in the Third Reich
  • Culture in the Third Reich: Overview

    Article

    National Socialism (Nazism) represented much more than a political movement. The Nazi leaders who came to power in January 1933 wanted more than just political authority. They wanted to change the cultural landscape: to promote what they considered to be traditional “German” and “Nordic” values, to remove Jewish, “foreign,” and “degenerate” influences, and to shape a racial community which aligned with Nazi ideals.

    Culture in the Third Reich: Overview
  • German Resistance to Hitler
  • Denmark

    Article

    German policies varied from country to country, including direct, brutal occupation and reliance upon collaborating regimes. Until 1943, the German occupation regime took a relatively benign approach to Denmark.

    Tags: rescue
    Denmark
  • Raoul Wallenberg and the Rescue of Jews in Budapest
  • Quakers

    Article

    Though a small religious movement, the Society of Friends (Quakers) organized relief and advocated rescue in Europe before, during, and after the Holocaust. The American Friends Service Committee became an important part of a rescue network helping refugees. The group worked in French internment camps, hid Jewish children, and assisted thousands of Jewish and non-Jewish refugees with immigration and resettlement to the United States.

    Quakers
  • Jewish Resistance

    Article

    Nazi-sponsored persecution and mass murder fueled resistance to the Germans in the Third Reich itself and throughout occupied Europe. Although Jews were the Nazis' primary victims, they too resisted Nazi oppression in a variety of ways, both collectively and as individuals.

    Jewish Resistance
  • Dachau

    Article

    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 these sites was Dachau, the longest operating camp.

    Dachau
  • Operation "Harvest Festival"

    Article

    Approximately 42,000 Jews were killed during Operation "Harvest Festival" (Aktion "Erntefest"), which began at dawn on November 3, 1943.

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