II. WWII Sept 39-May 45: Genocide & a ‘New Order’

Phase 1: 1939-41 Euthanasia. Poland & Genocide


War Sept 1 ‘39 Germany invades Poland->France Britain declare war=WWII begins=2nd period Holocaust starts
Hatred ideology translated into genocide & Final Solution
Blitzkrieg tactic: Lightning war=planes, tanks, artillery
9/27 Warsaw surrenders. Reinhard Heydrich became leader of new Reich Main Security Office (RSHA). 29th Poland divided: Germany got 2/3, Soviet Union the rest
Oct. 26,000 Jews in Palestine join British army
Phony War quiet west front 10/39-4/40: 8 mos inactivity
Maginot Line: France’s defense supertrench 87 mile

Apr-Ju 40: west occupied Denmark Norway Netherlands Belgium, Luxembourg, France surrendered to Germany
Dunkirk 5/27-6/40: 1/4 m. Brit, French soldiers evacuate
Charles de Gaulle: leader Free French govt. in England
June 22 ‘40 France split in 2: Marshal Philippe Petain collaborationist, agreed 2/3 France, Paris under German; Petain rules unoccupied south rest -Vichy, capital
6/25 England alone; PM W. Churchill inspired Brit; radar; during London Blitz abt RAF: Never in the field of human conflict was so much owed by so many to so few
9/27 Tripartite -Axis pact signed: Germany, Italy, Japan
10/28 Italy invades Greece. Hungary, Rumania join Axis
1/22/41 Tobruk in North Africa falls to the British
2/12 German General Erwin Rommel arrives in Tripoli
3/11 President Roosevelt signs the Lend-Lease Act
April: Greece, Yugoslavia fall. 5/27 sinking of the Bismarck by British Navy. Rapid success convinced Nazis that time was at hand to impose their ‘New Order
Euthanasia -T-4 Nazi ideology: deadly vision of racially pure society; useless mouths - chronically ill, physically & mentally defective had no right to live -unworthy of life. Nazis turned to euthanasia to eliminate unfit; 9/1/39: H. signs order granting right to die; 10/39: euthanasia mercy killing program -code name Aktion T-4 begins; doctors killed 275,000 by gas/lethal injection; bodies cremated. ‘41 protests; churches forced to stop; T-4 model for mass murder; veterans bring experience to death camps
Poland, turn to genocide - a new racial order 4th time Poland divided -Germany & Soviet Union; central section -Lublin Krakow, Warsaw: German colony/protectorate= General Government, Hans Frank. 9/21 Poland: Heydrich authorizes mobilization of Einsatzgruppen -killing squads, ghettos under a Judenrat -Jewish Council
Lebensraum+Poles viewed as inferior Slavs/subhuman-->
ethnic cleansing; Poles victims to terror, inhuman mass deportation to make room for German master race -Aryans, expropriation. A -B Aktion: code name for mass killing of Polish intellectual elite; over 10,000 Polish Catholic priests, teachers, artists, writers, politicians, technicians & political leaders murdered by spring 1940 -most in the 1st months of occupation; 1000s sent to concentration camps. 6 m. Poles sent to Germany as slave-workers. 50,000 Aryan-looking children adopted by Germans; many incapable of Germanization sent to camps, died
Katyn Forest Massacre, 1940: over 4000 Polish officers
prisoners since ‘39 murdered by Soviets; buried there
Atmosphere of general barbarity & isolation in east -->
created physical & emotional conditions enabling the radicalization of Nazi’s anti-Jewish campaign