Before the Holocaust in Germany, from 1939-1945, Jews were already victims of society, but for religious reasons. In the 1500’s, Martin Luther wanted to place attacks upon the Jews because the Jews would not go along with Luther’s new religion and the Jews chose to stick with their own traditions of religion and not go to Christianity. Because of this, the Jews were forced to live in separate communities called ghettoes and had to pay special taxes. Many of their rights were taken away. They weren’t even allowed to own their own land. In the 1800’s, many people were against the Jews for racial purposes, which were no longer based on religious reasons. People were always blaming the Jews for society’s troubles and the horrible things that would happen. Like in 1881, when revolutionaries assassinated Czar Alexander Two of Russia- Many Russian Jews were blamed and killed by groups called pogroms.

In 1933, Adolf Hitler, the leader of the Nazi Party, became head of the German government. From 1914-1918, Germany’s defeat in World War One had left the country’s economy in ruins. Hitler then blamed the Jews. On April 1, 1933, Hitler’s government sponsored a nationwide boycott of Jewish stores. As months went by, the government passed a number of laws that kept Jews away from specific occupations. In 1935, Jews were stripped of citizenship. Jews were forbidden to marry non-Jews.

After World War Two began in 1939, millions of Jews came under German control. The slaughter of Jews began with the invasion of the Soviet Union in June 1941. Concentration camps then came along in 1933, after Hitler took power. Later on, several more concentration camps were formed. They had gas rooms, disguised as showers.

Adolf Hitler, as a Nazi dictator, wanted to eliminate all Jews. At the end of the war in 1945, Hitler and his army killed around six million Jewish women, men, and children. Adolf Hitler and his men were not only trying to wipe out all Jews, but also physically handicapped or mentally retarded people, Gypsies, Slavs, Poles, and Soviet prisoners of war. They even wanted to eliminate homosexuals, Jehovah’s Witnesses, priests and ministers, members of labor unions, and communists. An estimate of eleven to twelve million people in all, were killed in gas chambers. After that, the Nazis would burn the bodies.

The war finally ended in 1945 when countries like America and France invaded Germany. Hitler committed suicide, but the massacres over Jews and other races, finally ended.

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