The Holocaust - in Western Civilization, Edition 2000
Shoah & the Nazi Assault on Humanity, A Warning, They let us do it
May their voice never be silenced
May your voice be heard
Remember & speak up for all-inclusiveness & equal dignity
Preface by Edith Shaked
There is an increasing readiness to view the Holocaust as a crucial reference point for multi-cultural, humanistic and liberal education.1
As historical event, the Holocaust can be understood from various disciplinary point. However, ... it must be understood historically -what actually happened. From the facts, some possible conclusions might be formulated as to why.2
Following my own personnel struggle with the voluminous collections already available on the Internet, I decided to put on the web, The Holocaust, Edition 2000. It may be of interest to those facing the same struggles. If you click on content, you have an overview of the course description. I have attempted to borrow from some of the best resources available, and then have combined them into one guide. This guide attempts to present a coherent and comprehensive history of the Holocaust Era, connected & integrated in a chronological order, within the development of the events of WWII, following the perspective of Holocaust scholar, Gerhard Weinberg. I was also inspired by the work of Yehuda Bauer, who have summed up the educational & moral lessons of the Holocaust, in the following memorable three-point prohibition:
Do not be a perpetrator
Do not be a victim
Do not be a bystander.
The Holocaust - Edition 2000,Shoah & the Nazi Assault on Humanity, A Warning, is the only guide, to the best of my knowledge, with an innovative approach, because its approach is altogether inclusive, global, and integrative. Raoul Hilberg is well aware of the pressure to conform to an approved Holocaust narrative. He stated. "You can create an illusion that is totally misleading by leaving things out, even though everything you say is true." "If you want to stay within the purview of the Nazis, you have to reconstruct what they did," Geyer explained in a telephone interview. "You can't just ignore some of what they did because it doesn't fit your point of view.
Therefore, this Guide took diverse material from many different available and reliable sources, and combined all of them into ONE text. If we are to understand the full scope of the Holocaust, Shoah, the Nazi Assault on Humanity, and the Holocaust Era, 1933-1945, the historical approach MUST be as global as possible. No exploration and interpretation can be meaningful, without an encompassing historically accurate, and comprehensive view of the totality of the period and the events, and those must be completely integrated and closely interconnected within the developments of World War II.
This Guide had its genesis in a course, The Holocaust, I initiated, and successfully got it approved as a permanent course. I could not find one book on the Holocaust, which presents an inclusive and global narrative of all what many consider as the relevant events in that period, and closely interconnected with the course of World War II. Since my students, who are not Jewish, and knew almost nothing on the subject ,liked it, I decide to put it on the web for anyone to use it, in condition that, like with me, no profit is made out of it. Its purpose is to serve others, who may also like it.
The outcome of the Holocaust Era was the annihilation of 6 million Jews (half of Europe's Jewish population, the highest percentage of loss of any people in World war II, and the almost complete destruction of the European Jewish communities), and 5.5. million others, undesirable Gentiles/non-Jews, by the National Socialist regime of Germany and its collaborators. This Holocaust Guide, Edition 2000 strives to present the history of the Holocaust as a human disaster. This Guide tries to examine and explain what happened, when, where, how, and why. As best I could, I have tried to present what actually happened. The Holocaust, Edition 2000, has combined its narrative from the following reliable scholars, & sources, listed according to the alphabetic order:
Bauer, Yehuda, & Nili Keren. The History of the Holocaust. New York: Franklin Watts, 1982.
Botwinick, R. S. (1996). A History of the Holocaust: From Ideology to Annihilation.
Upper Saddle River, N.J.: Prentice-Hall.
Epstein, Eric Joseph, and Rosen Philip. Dictionary of the Holocaust. Westport, Connecticut:
Greenwood Press, 1997.
Fischel, Jack R. The Holocaust. Westport, Connecticut. London: Greenwood Press, 1998.
Grobman, Gary M: The Holocaust - A Guide to Pennsylvania Teachers,
Gilbert Martin. Atlas of the Holocaust. New York: Pergamon Press, 1988. Includes 316 fully
annotated maps that trace the evolution of the nazi efforts to annihilate the Jews.
Gilbert, Martin. The Holocaust: the Jewish Tragedy. London: Collins, 1986
The Holocaust: The destruction of European Jewry (title in the United States)
Gutman, Yisrael, ed. Encyclopedia of the Holocaust. 4 vols. New York: Macmillan, 1990
Landau, Ronnie S. The Nazi Holocaust. London-New York: I.B. Tauris & Co Ltd
Marrus, Michael R. The Holocaust in History
Perry, Chase, Jacob, V. Laue. Western Civilization, Ideas, Politics & Society. Houghton 92
The United Holocaust Memorial Museum: http://www.ushmm.org/
Simon Wiesenthal Center, Teachers Resources, Museum of Tolerance Online
The Courage to Remember: http://motlc.wiesenthal.com/resources/courage/links.html#2
The Holocaust. PSYC/ANS0 3500 02. Instructor: Dr. Linda M. Woolf
The Holocaust - Dickinson State University
Jehovahs Witnesses - Resistance: http://www.Holocaust-trc.org/Jehovah.htm
United States Holocaust Memorial Museum - The site provides all the information the public
needs for trips, calendars of upcoming events, access to museum resources, and on-line exhibits. http://www.ushmm.org/
Yad Vashem, About the Holocaust - Shoah
My thanks to all of them for their excellent material.
This Guide is in line with their approach. It strives to combine narrative history and the accurate, impartial, critical investigation and analysis of events, and to explore the connecting of the events, inside and outside the European continent. It attempts to present a chronological narrative that respects the impact of and the consequences of the events related to the war, called later World War II. It is cognizant of the political developments of World War II in its totality, and therefore links the killing plan to the evolution of the war. It attempts to present a coherent, exact, and comprehensive history of the Holocaust Era, connected & integrated in a chronological order, within the development of the events of WWII. And, as Professor Goldhagen, it also takes in consideration the perspective of the perpetrators. Throughout, I tried to demonstrate the mutual influences & interplay of ideology and action, belief and program, before, during, and after the Holocaust Era.
What follows is a history whose purpose is not so much to challenge current interpretations of the Holocaust Era, as it is to try to be as much as possible, inclusive, integrative, comprehensive, and global. New in this Edition 2000 of The Holocaust:
* Antisemitism Systematic prejudice against Jews. Notice the absence of a hyphen (-); there has never been any such thing as "Semitism." The term "antisemitism" is, properly one word. (from: http://www.mtsu.edu/~baustin/glossary.html)
antisemitism is considered a secular term created in the 19th century, in the context of racial nationalism; it is also written in one word. Marr coined the term in the 1870s to distinguish between old-time Jew-hatred and modern, political, ethnic, or racial opposition to the Jews. ... This term made great advances and soon became common usage in many languages. So much so, that it applied not just to the modern brand of Jew-hatred but--against all logic--was attached to all kinds of enmity toward Jews, past and present. Thus we now say 'antisemitism', even when we talk about remote periods in the past, when one had no inkling of this modern usage. ...
Let's go back to the hyphen ... It is obvious then that 'anti-Semitism' is a non-term, because it is not directed against so-called 'Semitism'. ... Strike out the hyphen and you will treat antisemitism for what it really is--a generic name for modern Jew-hatred ...3
* A chronological approach, and not a thematic/topical method, to the interaction Perpetrators - Victims - Resisters - Bystanders - Collaborators - Rescuers, because history is vitally related to human actions and a sense of sequence & time. Therefore, it is important to follow the interaction Perpetrators - Victims - Resisters - Bystanders - Collaborators - Rescuers, in a chronological order, and to examine the interaction in prewar (lec. 8-d), and later, in another lecture, in the context of WWII. Following the same chronological approach, the story of Varian Fry, a rescuer, is integrated in the narrative of Frances invasion by Germany in 1940, in lecture 10-b, and not in lecture 13, Rescuers & bystanders.
* Non-Jewish Resistance & emphasis on resistance:
We need the stories of the heroes and martyrs, explains Dr. Franklin H. Littell, to give us eternal reminders that there were those who were surrounded by darkness far more intense than most of us can comprehend - and still affirmed the dignity and integrity and liberty of the human person.
Christian Jehovahs Witnesses as resisters and not only victims, before WWII, in chapter 8-d, and in chapter 12: Resistance after 1939: Jehovahs Witnesses - Spiritual resistance
The White Rose, German students resisters ( chapter 12).
* The Black Experience
based on article in publication by the US Holocaust Memorial Museum, and "Hitler's Forgotten Victims" by David Okuefuna and Moise Shewa:
*A chronological connection between history of the Holocaust & the events of WWII
One chapter summarizing WWII from 1939-1945, is not enough for understanding the Holocaust. The history of the Holocaust must be integrated in the evolution of the history of World War II, because only and solely such an approach can result in an accurate and truthful story of the Holocaust. Historical evidence shows that the events of the Holocaust happened in the background and context of World War II, and that the Holocaust and the events of WW II are interconnected and interdependent.
Gerhard L. Weinberg commented on the historical confining aspect of the history of the Holocaust, separated from events of WWII, in his article:
There exists a fairly common tendency to write, talk, and teach about the Holocaust and about World War II as separate and only barely related events. ... There maybe references ... but the authors obviously have little interest in and familiarity with the war as a whole.
Certainly those in charge of both the war and the Holocaust on the German side had no doubts on the connection themselves. No one needed to explain to them that the overwhelming majority of the Jews they killed had come into their reach only because of the war. ... had the Germans won (as they certainly expected) the percentage would have been higher. The special racial character of the war in German eyes can be seen quite easily ... .4
What I am trying to clarify is the extent to which developments in the military and diplomatic course of the war and in the Holocaust intersected with each other, and how a failure to take this intersections into account reduces our ability to understand either.5
Gerhard Weinberg ... makes clear ..., that scholars and teachers of the Holocaust can have their vision limited by the blinders imposed by the field. Weinberg exposes the fairly common tendency to write, talk, and teach about the Holocaust and about World War II as separate and only barely related events, and by contrast illustrates the benefits of looking at the war and at the Holocaust as in interconnected way6
* Women in the Holocaust
" . . .by ignoring gender," she states, "we stand to miss one of the most lethal weapons of Nazi propaganda and persecution.
* American Jewish POW The Abandonment of Americans in Hitler's Camps
Ahdut am, ahdut goral - One people, one fate, Ehad Haam. Story of those American caught in the Third Reich: http://members.aol.com/bardbooks/index.htm
In my task, I have learned a lot from reading comments by Holocaust scholars in H-NET List for History of the Holocaust: H-Holocaust. I took a semester leave without pay, to learn more about the Holocaust, since I am not a Holocaust scholar, but taught Western Civilization. I attended the Summer Institute organized by Zev Weiss from the Holocaust Education Foundation, and the Holocaust Florida Conference, thanks to a grant Tucson Community Foundation, and Pima Community College Foundation. I thank all the Holocaust scholars from whom I borrowed heavily.
Thanks to: Zev Weiss who inspired me
Holocaust Education foundation - grant for summer institute for Holocaust & Jewish studies
Dr. Rosemary Schulz, Dean of Instruction, grant for summer institute
Dr. Phil Silver, vice-chancellor
Joe Levine, Pima Community College Foundation - grant for Holocaust conference in Florida
Donna Grant, Tucson Community Foundation - grant for Holocaust conference in Florida
All staff members at Pima Community College Downtown Campus and other staff members: Dr Noelia -President, Dave Padget, Dr. Ken Chiaro, Dr. Martin Gandz, Tim Murphy, CDAC
all members of H-Holocaust and H-Antisemitism, and many others ...
Above all, I owe this guide to my husband, who gave me the courage to begin the work and the strength to complete it. Edith Shaked, e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org
Preface by Gary Grobman
Between 1933 and 1945, a catastrophe occurred in Europe which culminated in the wanton, planned destruction of much of European Jewry and millions of other "undesirables" while most of the world looked on with disinterest. Was this aberrant behavior by so-called "civilized" human beings a half-century ago a quirk of history? How could this have happened? Could it happen again? Could it happen to you or me here in the United States? What parallels do we see today between what happened in Germany and what is happening today? Why isn't genocide an anachronism instead of being today's front page news?
This Guide seeks to provide answers to many of these questions. Its purpose is not so much to provide the glory details of the Nazis' race war against the Jews & the others, as to permit students to understand the types of thinking and behavior which led to genocide during World War II. By understanding this thinking and behavior, students can develop the necessary tools to not only avoid this themselves, but to condemn such thinking and behavior of others.
Scores of issues surrounding the Holocaust are both academically controversial as well as politically controversial. How does one discuss ... antisemitism? How does one discuss other genocides? Even the issue of the number of Jews which perished in the Holocaust resulted in many different answers from Task Force participants. ... Historians often disagree among themselves on what happened, and when. Professionals in the field of Holocaust studies often disagree on the interpretation of events ...
This document is the product of more than four years of effort and involved the participation and expertise of scores of educators, historians ... In my duel role as project director and chief writer for this Guide, I was privileged to direct the efforts of many dedicated Pennsylvanians, almost all of whom were volunteers ... We carefully avoided "re-inventing the wheel," acknowledging that there are currently several valuable Holocaust Curriculum Guides available. Many of the themes, ideas for discussions and activities, and the format were adapted from the best Guides available, particularly:
Facing History and Ourselves Intentional Educations, Inc.; ...
The Human Rights Series The University of the State of New York (State Education Dept., Bureau of Curriculum Development); and
Holocaust and Genocide_A Search for Conscience New Jersey Dept. of Education/Vineland, NJ; Board of Education/ADL of B'nai B'rith. ...
I wish to thank the scores of people ... _1990 Gary M. Grobman
1 Landau, Ronnie S. Studying the Holocaust, Issues, Readings and Documents. London and New York: Routledge, 1998, I.
2 A history of the Holocaust, Yehuda Bauer,Franklin Watts: Danbury, CT,1982
3 Shmuel Almog, What's in a Hyphen? This article appeared in the SICSA Report: Newsletter of the Vidal Sassoon International Center for the Study of Antisemitism (Summer 1989)
4 Gerhardt L. Weinberg, The Holocaust and World War II. In Lessons and Legacies II, Ed. Donald G. Schilling, pp. 26-27. Evanston, Illinois: Northwestern University Press, 1998.
5 The Holocaust and World War II, in Lessons and Legacies, v. 2, pp. 29-32.
6 Donald G. Schilling, Introduction. In Lessons and Legacies II, Ed. Donald G. Schilling, pp. 26-27. Evanston, Illinois: Northwestern University Press, 1998, pp. 6-7