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Such an event signifies the uniqueness of the holocaust whereby it cannot be compared with other forms of suffering experienced in historical genocide such as those that took place in Cambodia, Rwanda and elsewhere.
Since antiquity, the hatred towards the Jews propelled individuals to establish a league of Anti- Semitism that augmented its hatred towards the Jews. Anti- Semitism throughout history has considered factors such as military, culture and economic to justify their hatred towards the Jews. Those who upheld anti- Semitism attributes feared the Jews military advancement whereby they considered it as a threat, while others feared and got angry at Jew’s business orientations since it made them economically self- sustaining1. In addition, majority feared the Jew’s culture since the Jews lived in a large community that could not borrow or assimilate in other people’s culture. In justifying the uniqueness of the holocaust, one should not view the approach as an effort to garner the Jew’s psychological advantage or a sacred prestige because of the suffering they went through. The holocaust will invariably echo in the minds of historian who tries to fathom the atrocities that faced the European Jews. Some critiques of the uniqueness of the holocaust postulate that claiming the atrocities that met the Jews are an act of garnering prestigious attributes to the Jews. The notion is not correct especially in the contemporary societies where the most powerful control events and activities. In such a society where the powerful dominates, it is not prestigious to be powerless and victimized.
The uniqueness of the holocaust is better understood by revisiting the history within the Nazi Germany, within the history context of the Jewish and the general history. Within the Nazi history, it is indicated that approximately 55 million individuals perished by
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This very disturbing historical incident was known as the Holocaust. Before the Holocaust, there were about nine million Jews in Europe, however approximately two – thirds of them were massacred by Adolf Hitler together with the Nazi regime. 1 With the given support of the state, there were different laws implemented in order to eliminate the Jews in which the Nuremberg Laws as introduced by Hitler had become one of the most notoriously known.
Historians have oftentimes regarding the Holocaust as a unique occurrence; unparalleled by other crimes in human history. Naturally, from the standpoint of a historian, such a statement is bold and must be validated with the facts. In seeking to invalidate this statement and bring it more in line with an understanding of history, the following analysis will seek to weigh whether or not the Holocaust was a unique occurrence within world history or whether it was merely another mass genocide as has been perpetrated by so many distinct groups within the past.
However, it must also be understood that in order to understand why the holocaust took place, focusing solely upon the Nazi period of German or European history is not sufficient. As such, deep undercurrents of anti-Semitism and racial hatred for the Jewish population of Europe had existed since the Middle Ages.
The term “holocaust” is used referencing both its definitions. When capitalized it refers to The Holocaust - the genocide of European Jews and others by the Nazis during World War II. When not capitalized it refers to a “great destruction resulting in the extensive loss of life, especially by fire” or “a massive slaughter”.
In the very first chapter, Friedlander mentions that while eugenics was not peculiar to Germany, the political and scientific community was more radical in that country. In the ninteenth and early twentieth century, eugenics was a bonafide science and received poltical support.
mple, in a Jewish ghetto, often resistance would be held back by community leaders because of the fear that any Jews caught gathering weapons or planning escape would bring down punishment on the whole community. This was not outlandish thinking, either, because this is exactly
The German people readily accepted the necessity to exterminate an enemy. Propaganda allowed the Holocaust to continue. The war also allowed the Holocaust to go on for so long.
Since the Diaspora, or scattering of the Jews from current day Israel, Europeans
those who were physically or mentally disabled, the mentally insane, or of other ethnic races such as Roma and Gypsies, in addition to anyone deemed a prisoner of war were subjected to either forced labor and near-starvation in the concentration and death camps in Europe, or