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    Historical Essay

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    Year 11 IBHistory Ms. Watson”How did Hitler persecute the minority groups of Germany so that he could create his perfect Aryan society?”Word Count: 148822/3/04Michael CurrieDuring Hitler’s time in power minority groups in Germany and in Europe weretortured, tormented, exiled and killed.

    Hitler persecuted various minoritygroups because he thought they had no place in his master race. Hitler hada vision of a master race called the “Aryan race” which he planned topurify and become world dominators. Hitler decided that to make this masterrace he would have to exterminate all the minorities which did not fitunder the Aryan race. Examples of these minorities are the Jews, Gypsies,Homosexuals, handicapped and anyone who he believed to be asocial ordefective. Not only did Hitler persecute these groups in Germany, as hestarted invading other countries he persecuted the minorities in thosecountries as well.

    Some of the most affected countries were Poland,Holland, Austria and France. Hitler’s persecution of Minority groups was anissue that affected Europe as a whole. What was Hitler’s view of a master race? In Hitler’s book Mein Kampf Hitlerdivides humans into categories based on physical appearance, establishinghigher and lower orders, or types of humans. At the top, according toHitler is the Germanic man with his fair skin, blond hair and blue eyes. Hitler refers to this type of person as an Aryan. He asserts the Aryan isthe supreme form of human, or master race.

    “All the human culture, all theresults of art, science, and technology that we see before us today, arealmost exclusively the creative product of the Aryan. . . “(http://www. bofhlet.

    net/tasteless/13/kampf. htm). This direct quote gives anexcellent view of Hitler’s belief. Hitler used powerful propagandatechniques to convince not only the German people, but countless others,that if they eliminated the people who stood in their way and thedegenerates and racially inferior, they – “the great Germans” would prosper(http://www.

    holocaustforgotten. com/romgypsies. htm). Hitler gave the titledegenerates and racially inferior to the Jews and other minority groups. Although the Aryan race was superior there were still people within theAryan race who were considered a burden to the society and were taken awayand treated as one of the minorities.

    These people were normally thedisabled and mentally ill and although they were of Aryan decent they werepersecuted just like the minorities because of their individualities. There were many different groups of people who were persecuted by theNazis, but by far the largest group was the Jews. There are many differentsuggestions of why Hitler hated the Jews, one being that his mothers doctorwas a Jew and when he couldn’t save her, Hitler blamed his mother’s deathon the Jews and another that he heard voices in his head telling him tosave Germany form the Jews (War Time leader series: Adolf Hitler. Learningessentials, Victoria), however this video source does seem to mix fact andopinion making assumptions of what was on Hitler’s mind.

    The fact is thatthe Jews were chosen for annihilation because of their race. Even thoughJews are defined by religion, Hitler saw the Jewish people as a race thathe believed needed to be completely annihilated(http://www. holocaustforgotten. com/romgypsies. htm). This source is alsosupported by many other historical writings.

    Hitler said it was the Jewswho are engaged in a conspiracy to keep this master race from assuming itsrightful position as rulers of the world, by tainting its racial andcultural purity and even inventing forms of government in which the Aryancomes to believe in equality and fails to recognize his racial superiority. For Hitler and committed Nazis the Jews were the arch-enemy. Persecutionbegan with a boycott of Jewish businesses and professionals on April 1,1933, allegedly in response to “atrocity propaganda” by Jews abroad. Thecampaign to destroy world Jewry continued, and endless trains took millionsof Jews to extermination camps.

    On the Night of Broken Glass(Kristallnacht, November 9-10, 1938) throughout Germany, Jewish synagogueswere torched, Jewish businesses and dwellings ransacked, Jews beaten up, insome cases killed, and thousands sent to concentration camps. With the waragainst the Soviet Union in June 1941, the SS deployed “task forces”(Einsatzgruppen) behind German lines, who systematically massacred hundredsof thousands of Jews. In the winter of 1941 to 1942, the SS began thesystematic murder of Jews through the use of gas, first through exhaustfumes in vans and then in gas chambers in six death camps: Chelmno, Belzec,Sobibor, Treblinka, Auschwitz-Birkenau and Majdanek. This continued untilthe end of 1944. The total Jewish death toll from ill treatment, shooting,and gas has been estimated at between 5 million and 6 million (MicrosoftEncarta Encyclopedia 2003.

    1993-2002 Microsoft Corporation. All rightsreserved). While some individuals dispute these figures, their factualbasis is accepted in nearly all history texts. Although The Jews were heavily persecuted there are many other minoritiesthat were persecuted as well and should not be forgotten. These groups arethe homosexuals, gypsies, mentally ill and the handicapped. Hitler hadplanned to persecute the homosexuals but it was not until 1933 when Hitlerhad become supreme legal authority of the Third Reich that the activepersecution of gays had begun.

    One of the biggest issues regarding thepersecution of the homosexuals was Hitler’s persecution of Ernst Rohm, headof the SA (storm troopers). Rohm’s army was growing ever strong and Hitlerknew that he could not maintain power without the help of Rohm and his armyso Hitler came to Rohm’s defence by saying, “His private life cannot be anobject of scrutiny unless it conflicts with basic principles of theNational Socialist ideology” (http://www. infopt. demon. co.

    uk/nazi. htm). WhenRohm’s army grew to 500,000 men by 1932, Hitler saw a threat and decidedthat Rohm’s private life did conflict with the parties ideologies. On June30th, 1934 Hitler made his move on Rohm and his army which came to be knownas the “The Night of Long Knives”.

    A group of Hitler’s men barged into aparty that the SA were having and shot some men on the spot while 200 otherSA leaders were rounded up and taken to Berlin where they were massacred. Rohm was taken to Stadelheim prison in Munich by order of Himmler andGoring, given a gun a told to kill himself. He refused saying, “Let Adolfdo his dirty work”. They shot him down(http://www.

    infopt. demon. co. uk/nazi. htm). These quotes seem plausible butthe source maybe biased as it appears to be from a gay activist’sperspective.

    On that same day Hitler ordered the elimination of allhomosexuals from the army in fear that they had started a secret orderwithin the army. Although the Night of the Long Knives marks the beginningof the slaughtering of gays, the year before (1933) began the persecutions. On February of that year all gay bars and hotels were banned. On March 3rdnudism was banned. March 7th the West Germany city Administration began itscampaign against homosexuals, Jews, Negroes, and Mongols.

    November 13th theHamburg City Administration asked the Head of Police to pay specialattention to transvestites and to deliver them to the concentration campsif necessary (http://www. infopt. demon. co. uk/nazi. htm).

    The Gypsies were persecuted like the Jews for being “racially inferior anddegenerate”. The gypsies were also seen as being asocial which added totheir worthlessness to the Nazis vision of a master race. It was because ofthis view, as an asocial race, that the gypsies were sterilized. Thissterilization occurred so that they were not able to reproduce, andtherefore in the long run the gypsies would eventually become an extinctrace. Like the Jews, the Gypsies were also moved into special areas set upby the Nazis. Half a million Gypsies, almost the entire Eastern EuropeanGypsy population, was wiped out during the Holocaust(http://www.

    holocaustforgotten. com/romgypsies. htm)Forced sterilization was the forerunner of the systematic killing of thementally ill and the handicapped. Hitler made a law that allowed doctors tokill people who were suffering from an incurable illness.

    This program wascalled Euthanasia and was as a euphemism used by the Nazis as their truegoal was to exterminate the mentally ill and handicapped which wouldcleanse the Aryan race. Originally the patients were killed by lethalinjection, but carbon monoxide proved to be a more efficient method ofkilling as gas chambers could be disguised as showers complete with fakenozzles in order to deceive victims. This method carried on through the warand was later inserted into the extermination camps and many more werebuilt in Poland for use later in the war (http://www. us-israel. org/jsource/Holocaust/disabled. html).

    This evidence is very clearand consistent and is believed to be true in many historical texts. Howeverthe website is made from the perspective of a US-Israel organization. Hitler’s persecution of minority groups spread to other countries as well. Poland was severely affected as it was great agricultural land close toGermany filled with strong healthy farmers. Hitler forced the Polish Jewsinto Ghettos and imprisoned the people of Poland inside their own land. Blonde haired children were Germanized and taken back to Germany to betrained as Nazi supporters.

    (http://www. holocaustforgotten. com/fivmil. htm)Holland was invaded by Germany because they were considered to be the”superior” racial composition of the Dutch people, certifiably 100% Aryan;German interbreeding with the Dutch could in fact improve the racial purityof the new German super-nation (http://www-lib.

    usc. edu/~anthonya/war/holnazi. htm). An example of a minority persecuted in Holland is Anne Frank. Anne Frankwas one of the Jewish victims of Nazi persecution during the Second WorldWar. After Nazi Germany invaded the Netherlands in 1940, increasinglysevere anti-Jewish measures began there(http://www.

    channels. nl/amsterdam/annefran. html). The information found onAnne Frank is from a Dutch website which summarises her factual account andwhich is a well recognised source of information of the effects of Hitler’sregime on Holland and on her as one individual. In conclusion, because of Hitler’s vision of a master race, so manyinnocent people were persecuted all over Germany and Europe. Hitlercommitted genocide so that everyone could be the same without differences.

    By doing this he took away the one thing that makes a person, theirindividuality. Bibliography: Internet Sources:. http://www. bofhlet. net/tasteless/13/kampf.

    htm. http://www. holocaustforgotten. com/romgypsies. htm.

    http://www. infopt. demon. co.

    uk/nazi. htm. http://www. holocaustforgotten.

    com/fivmil. htm. http://www-lib. usc. edu/~anthonya/war/holnazi. htm.

    http://www. channels. nl/amsterdam/annefran. html.

    http://www. us-israel. org/jsource/Holocaust/disabled. html. http://www.

    channels. nl/amsterdam/annefran. htmlCD-ROM Sources:. Microsoft Encarta Encyclopedia 2003.

    1993-2002 MicrosoftCorporationVideo Sources:. War Time leader series: Adolf Hitler. Learning essentials, Victoria

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