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Nass 1 Katie Nass Mr.

Neuberger English Comp 101-135 6 December 2012 Research Paper Kristallnacht Looking back on the 20th century, we have to view a series of events as a tragedy. These events started a war that engulfed Europe. The countries that were in this war wanted to save many from hatred and discrimination, the anti-Semitic ways of the Nazis, and the attempted genocide of a race. The Holocaust Explained website shows that Nazis were responsible for murdering six million Jews. One million of that six million were Jewish children. Also, Jews werent the only targets of Nazis persecution and discrimination, Roma, those with mental or physical disabilities,

Jews in Camps Source: http://bbc.in/UHOsf3

homosexuals, Jehovah's Witnesses, trade unionists, political opponents, Poles and Soviet prisoners of war, were also targets. (What is the Holocaust?). That is just the middle of the event. There were events leading up to the slaughter in camps and ghettos. One major start up event was Kristallnacht. Kristallnacht translates into Crystal Night or Night of Broken Glass. The name comes from the shattered glass in the streets from Jewish store windows.

Even before Kristallnacht, things were not looking so good for the Jews. There were the
Nuremberg Laws and propaganda. According to Amy Witherbee, the United States noticed,in

July of 1938, that the Jewish population was in danger. But other countries wouldnt take in emigrants. So nothing was done. Thats when the Nazis changed methods on the Jews, from

Nass 2 banning them from all cultural and economic participation, to measures designed to identify them. Now Jews were required to have identification cards, passports with red Js on them, Jewish men and womens official documents had Sarah or Israel marked on them. Also, The Nazis identified and arrested approximately 17,000 Jews of Polish nationality in October 1938 and left them at the Polish border, where they were refused admission to Poland. Later, the Nazis would invade Poland and force any Jew over the age of 10 to paint a Star of David on his or her forehead (Chapter Three: Genocide).

A month later things got much worse says the Holocaust and Humanity website. Kristallnacht started on November 9th 1938, and continued till the 10th. More than the date, The assassination of vom Rath and the events of this night were exploited and manipulated by the Nazis to begin the total annihilation of the Jews in Europe (Kristallnacht: November 9-10 What happened on that night?). Amy Witherbee explains why this assassination caused the Jews so much trouble, After the adolescent son of departed Polish Jew assassinated a German officer von Rath in Paris, this young man being Jewish was in a way the excuse the German government needed to coordinate these attacks on Jewish communities throughout Germany (Chapter Three: Genocide).
Destroyed Synagogue Source: http://shrewsbury.net/?p=8175

Many wonder what happened the night of Kristallnacht. The United States Holocaust Memorial Museum (USHMM) says, anti -Jewish Riots plundered and destroyed homes, stores, centers of the community, and synagogues. It says rioters burned or destroyed 267 synagogues, vandalized or looted 7,500 Jewish businesses, and killed at least 91 Jewish people. Not to

Nass 3 mention the other places that were vandalized like Jewish cemeteries, hospitals, and schools. The Jewish people had to watch as their homes and possessions burned, their businesses were broken into and destroyed, and there sacred places of worship were vandalized and burned with no help from the police or fire brigades (Kristallnacht: The November 1938 Pogroms).

One must also know how the Jews themselves were treated besides their belonging and public places. There were several happenings that were pretty brutal. Witherbee informs us that Germans arrested approximately 25,000 Jewish men. S.S. officers brutalized women and children, and encouraged mob violence directed at their Jewish victims. There were also those that werent just brutally beaten. S.S. officers also raped their victims. The German government punished those who raped their victims only because they were in violation of interracial breeding laws. (Chapter Three: Genocide).

In Wrzburg, there were other terrible things happening, according to the article Wrzburg During the Holocaust Kristallnacht. A group of SA
Mob violence against the Jewish people Source: http://bit.ly/RZuXzL

militiamen stormed the old building of the Teachers Seminary. They shook the students out of their beds

and tortured them. People in the town encouraged the S.A. officers. S.A. destroyed the building and the things in the building, breaking windows, and removing doors. Wrzburg During the Holocaust Kristallnacht also says, in light of the violence one of the students called the police, who arrived on the scene only to arrest the older students. This act was cheered by the crowd. During Kristallnacht, and after, about 300 men were arrested by Gestapo imprisoned and tortured and moved to concentration camps. The secretary of the Jewish community was forced

Nass 4 to give Gestpo official documents, its valuable ritual objects, bonds, and other precious items. People were banned from community buildings. Jews were forced to pay for damages the riots caused. The libraries, housing important books and manuscripts, were also confiscated. The Jewish community had to finance the conversion of the old Teachers Seminary into a dormitory for Jewish refugees from the vicinity of Wrzburg, who had fled. (Yad Vashem).

Yad Vashem website also tells about the town of Baden-Baden, Germany. Jewish men were ordered to report to the police station there. It was the beginning of Kristallnacht. The SS ordered them to go outside to the courtyard and line up in rows. At noon, the ones lined up were joined by hundreds of other Jewish people and forced into lines heading to the synagogue. They were shouted at, German people hurled anti-Semitic epithets at the Jewish prisoners. At the synagogue there was more verbal abuse. Jews had to listen to anti-Semitic lectures from the SS. Also they had to read Mein Kampf at a podium in front of the other Jewish prisoners and were beaten afterwards. Jews had to sing the Nazi anthem Horst Wessel repeatedly until the Nazis were
The lines of Jew gathered in the Synagogue. Source: http://bit.ly/RVmGhQ

satisfied. After abusing them for many long hours, the Jews (except for the old and feeble) were loaded onto trucks and taken to Dachau. After deportation the mob set fire to the synagogue (Kristallnacht in Baden-Baden, Germany).

The effect on the Jews was terrible because of how German people acted and that nothing was done. We now know the Jews were brutalized, raped, tortured, yelled at, forced to hear antiSemitic lectures, forced to sing Horst Wessel, their possessions burned, as well as homes and synagogues. Also, the Jews were deported to camps, tortured and killed. The German people

Nass 5 urged S.S. officers on, watched them do horrible things to the Jews; they rioted, and helped destroy the Jews belongings and buildings, breaking of Jewish shop windows, hence naming the days. Nothing was done, the police just arrested Jews and firemen didnt put out fires.

The effect today is significant. In schools, students are educated on the subject of the Holocaust. Almost every year, from the time a child is able to understand the subject students are reminded. We learn about it in college and still after. Bill Sherman writes about the remembrance of Kristallnacht. The remembrance was held in 2011, at Charles Schusterman
The Jewish people cleaning up the glass after Kristallnacht Source: http://bit.ly/RZuXzL

Jewish Community Center, in Tulsa. They had a speaker, photos, and a photo essay. In this article, he urged people to

attend, but also this article informed the public. (Kristallnacht observance set for Thursday). This is just one remembrance, of many. So it is important today and then. Mr. Sherman writes Kristallnacht marked the beginning of the Holocaust, the systematic extermination of 6 million European Jews over the next seven years in what Nazi leader Adolf Hitler called the final solution. (Kristallnacht observance set for Thursday). But even though the Jewish people went through terrible persecution at Hilters hand beginning with Kristallnacht, as a race they survived and their culture has continued to thrive.

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Works Cited "It Came From Within... Exhibition Marking the Events of Kristallnacht." It Came From Within... Exhibition Marking the Events of Kristallnacht. Yad Vashem, 2012. Web. 13 Nov. 2012. "Kristallnacht: The November 1938 Pogroms." Kristallnacht: The November 1938 Pogroms. United States Holocaust Memorial Museum (USHMM), n.d. Web. 15 Nov. 2012. Sherman, Bill. "Kristallnacht Observance Set for Thursday." Newspaper Source. EBSCOhost, 5 Nov. 2011. Web. 15 Nov. 2012. "What Was the Holocaust?" - Key Stage 3. The Holocaust Explained, 2011. Web. 15 Nov. 2012. Witherbee, Amy. "Chapter Three: Genocide." Book Collection Nonfiction: High School Edition. EBSCOhost, 2009. Web. 15 Nov. 2012. "Wrzburg During the Holocaust." Kristallnacht. Yad Vashem, 2012. Web. 15 Nov. 2012.