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Life in Nazi Germany

1933 - 1945

Hitlers rise to power

January 30, 1933 Hitler becomes the chancellor of Germany (head of government). His first step is to get rid of the Communist party. February 27, 1933: Parliament burns down. Hitler blames the Communists even though the Nazis probably started the fire. Parliament was the last democratic barrier to stop Hitler from taking full control of Germany. Parliament on fire

Nazis take over germany

Hitler passes a law that makes it illegal to publish, campaign, or say anything anti-Nazi. Nazis start to take over local governments. Democratically elected officials are kicked out and replaced with Nazi officials. At the same time, newspapers publish about Communist attempts to overthrow the government. They say Nazis are the only way to save Germany.

Emergency Rule
Hitler forces the president to sign an emergency law for the protection of the people and the state It gets rid of all basic civil and human rights. Arson (setting fire), resisting the new law, and disturbing public order are punished by death. You can be arrested for any reason. You can be sentenced to prison without a trial.

democracy ends in Germany

The new law gives Hitler unrestricted power. Nazis kidnap, imprison, beat, and torture thousands of Communists, Social Democrats, and other anti Nazi political groups. They want to get rid of Dachau, the first concentration camp political opponents. March 23, 1933: The last Parliament meeting votes for the The Enabling Act. It lets Hitler make new laws without the Parliament.

The Frher
August 1994: The President dies. Hitler combines the positions of Chancellor and President. He is now head of the state, the government, and the military. With total control, Hitler can now begin work on his ultimate goal: create a German state for pureblooded Germans and spread terror among the outsiders.

My Leader

Laws to discriminate
Hitler quickly moved from attacking Communists, to attacking his real target, the Jews. April 1: Hitler made a list of businesses and individuals who were Jewish to be boycotted. Nazi signs were placed outside of Jewish businesses and factories. This strengthened the idea that destruction and damage were alright! Many Jewish homes and businesses were destroyed. Beware! Dont buy from a Jewish business

Laws to discriminate
April 7: The Germany government fires all non-Aryan workers. Jewish teachers, doctors, politicians, lawyers, and even performers were not allowed to work. Central to Nazi belief was the myth of a master race (Aryan). A pure blooded Aryan would have blonde hair, white skin, and blue eyes. Hitler wanted to protect this pure blood.

An Aryan family

Laws to discriminate
April 25: Admission to University can only be 1.5% Jewish. If you have 1000 students, only 15 can be Jewish. May: Nazis begin burning books that are un-German. September 28: Jews are banned from working in art, drama, writing, and film. September 29: Jews cannot own farmland.

Laws to discriminate
September 15, 1935: The Nuremberg Laws are passed. They take away all civil rights of Jews and other minorities (NonAryan). It also defined who was considered a Jew so Nazis could easily separate people. Jewish children are banned from German schools. Racial science becomes a mandatory class.

Who is considered Jewish?

Laws to discriminate
Jews are segregated from society socially, politically, economically. There land, homes, businesses, and possession are taken and given to Germans. Violence against Jews and other Jews not wanted minorities increased. Many were beaten and killed in the street. Thousands fled the country for other parts of Europe, the USA, and Palestine. and

Laws to discriminate
Many Jews stayed. They believed the Nazis would not last long. Also, they thought they could survive this difficult time. Finally, they loved Germany. Jews had lived in Germany for generations. They had been citizens since the late 1800s. Many had married into non-Jewish German families. Why did so many Germans go along with this? The Eternal Jew

Hitlers beliefs
He believed Jews, Roma, Slavics, homosexuals, the disabled, Communists,and many others as sub-human and unfit to be part of Germany. He believed these groups were trying to destroy Germany. He believed diversity made Germany weak. Everyone needed to be the same! He wanted more living space for German speakers.

Living space
March 1938: Germany takes over Austria without bloodshed. This violates the Treaty of Versailles. September 1938: Germany takes over Czechoslovakia. France and Britain were unhappy but did not want to start another war. They thought, After this time, Hitler will be satisfied. For Hitler, he thought Austria and Czechoslovakia were so easy. No one will care if I take over Poland, too!

World War 2 begins

September 1939: Germany invades Poland. 2 days later, Britain and France declare war on Germany. The Nazis swept across Europe. They defeated France, took Norway, invaded Yugoslavia and Greece, and controlled a large part of Russia. After 6 years of brutal war, Germany was defeated in 1945. Between 62 million and 78 million people died. 37 million to 54 million of these deaths were soldiers.

Hitlers Final solution

During World War 2, Hitler began to execute his Final Solution for the Jews and other minorities. Each country that Germany invaded was subject to the Nazis laws of discrimination. Jews are required to wear special badges sewed onto clothing.

Nazis created special closed city districts where Jews were forced to live. Conditions were very poor and they were often forced to do hard labor. The Nazis wanted to find and segregate all of the Jews while they worked out a plan for the Final Solution. Jews in Germany were deported to Ghettos in Poland.

Hitlers Question
Since 1919, Hitler had been thinking about an answer to his Jewish do you get rid of the Jews? First, he had tried to force them to emigrate out of Germany. Then he created more and more laws to try to force them to leave. Then he began to gather Jews from all over Europe in the Ghettos. He even sent his secret police to search every town for Jews hiding.

Hitlers Answer
The Nazis had used camps since 1933 for political opponents. Starting in 1941, the Nazis used the camps for a new purpose. Jews and other minorities were systematically gathered, transported, and murdered by the hundreds of thousands in Nazi run death camps.

The Trains
You would be forced on a train. Extreme cold or hot, filthy, and over crowded. There is no bathroom, water, or food. You must stand for days (4.5 to 18 days!). Thousands died before the journey was finished. At least 4 million people were sent to concentration camps by train. When you arrive at your destination you are meet with guns, barking dogs, shouting soldiers, and the smell of burning flesh.

The Camps
Men and women are separated. You are forced to take all of your clothing off and your head is shaved before you take a group shower. Those that are able to work are moved to a different area. Prisoners are abused, overworked, and starved. If someone can no longer work, they are executed.

If you are unfit for work, you are sent to a room. There are as many as 2,000 others with you. The door locks behind you and gas fills the room. Around 4 million people were killed in the Nazis 47 gas chambers. After, gold and silver teeth are removed. Bodies are burned in giant ovens or buried in mass graves.

Jews: 6 million or 67 % of Europes Jewish population. Roma: 500,000 murdered and thousands sterilized. Poles and Slavs: Over 2.5 million murdered. Political Opponents: Hundreds of thousands murdered. Disabled: 400,000 were sterilized and 250,000 murdered Homosexuals: 100,000 sent to prison. Surgically sterilized thousands.