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The Holocaust (General Info.)
« on: September 17, 2013, 13:07:42 PM »
The Holocaust

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

The Holocaust (from the Greek ὁλόκαυστος holókaustos: hólos, "whole" and kaustós, "burnt")[2] also known as Shoah (Hebrew: השואה, HaShoah, "the catastrophe"; Yiddish: חורבן, Churben or Hurban, from the Hebrew for "destruction"), was the mass murder or genocide of approximately six million Jews during World War II, a programme of systematic state-sponsored murder by Nazi Germany, led by Adolf Hitler and the Nazi Party, throughout the German Reich and German-occupied territories.[3]

Of the nine million Jews who had resided in Europe before the Holocaust, approximately two-thirds were killed.[4] Over one million Jewish children were killed in the Holocaust, as were approximately two million Jewish women and three million Jewish men.[5] A network of over 40,000 facilities in Germany and German-occupied territory were used to concentrate, hold, and kill Jews and other victims.[6]

Some scholars argue that the mass murder of the Romani and people with disabilities should be included in the definition,[7] and some use the common noun "holocaust" to describe other Nazi mass murders, including those of Soviet prisoners of war, Polish and Soviet civilians, and homosexuals.[8][9] Recent estimates, based on figures obtained since the fall of the Soviet Union in 1989, indicate some ten to eleven million civilians (mostly Slavs) and prisoners of war were intentionally murdered by the Nazi regime.[10][11]

The persecution and genocide were carried out in stages. Various laws to exclude the Jews from civil society, most prominently the Nuremberg Laws of 1935, were enacted in Germany before the outbreak of World War II in Europe. Concentration camps were established in which inmates were subjected to slave labor until they died of exhaustion or disease. Where Germany conquered new territory in eastern Europe, specialized paramilitary units called Einsatzgruppen murdered more than a million Jews and political opponents in mass shootings.

The occupiers required Jews and Romani to be confined in overcrowded ghettos before being transported by freight train to extermination camps where, if they survived the journey, most were systematically killed in gas chambers. Every arm of Germany's bureaucracy was involved in the logistics that led to the genocides, turning the Third Reich into what one Holocaust scholar has called "a genocidal state".[12]

"Selektion" on the Judenrampe, Auschwitz, May/June 1944. To be sent to the right meant slave labor; to the left, the gas chamber. This image shows the arrival of Hungarian Jews from Carpatho-Ruthenia, many of them from the Berehov ghetto. The photographer was Ernst Hofmann or Bernhard Walter of the SS. Image courtesy of Yad Vashem[1]

Etymology and use of the term

Main article: Names of the Holocaust

The term holocaust comes from the Greek word holókauston, referring to an animal sacrifice offered to a god in which the whole (olos) animal is completely burnt (kaustos).[13] For hundreds of years, the word "holocaust" was used in English to denote great massacres. Since the 1960s, the term has come to be used by scholars and popular writers to refer to the Nazi genocide of Jews.[14] The television mini-series Holocaust is credited with introducing the term into common parlance after 1978.[15]

The biblical word Shoah (שואה) (also spelled Sho'ah and Shoa), meaning "calamity", became the standard Hebrew term for the Holocaust as early as the 1940s, especially in Europe and Israel.[16] Shoah is preferred by many Jews for a number of reasons, including the theologically offensive nature of the word "holocaust", which they take to refer to the Greek pagan custom.[17]

The Nazis used a euphemistic phrase, the "Final Solution to the Jewish Question" (German: Endlösung der Judenfrage), and the phrase "Final Solution" has been widely used as a term for the genocide of the Jews. Nazis used the phrase "lebensunwertes Leben" (Life unworthy of life) in reference to their victims in an attempt to justify the killings.

Distinctive features

Institutional collaboration

Michael Berenbaum writes that Germany became a "genocidal state."[12]

    "Every arm of the country's sophisticated bureaucracy was involved in the killing process. Parish churches and the Interior Ministry supplied birth records showing who was Jewish; the Post Office delivered the deportation and denaturalization orders; the Finance Ministry confiscated Jewish property; German firms fired Jewish workers and disenfranchised Jewish stockholders."

The universities refused to admit Jews, denied degrees to those already studying, and fired Jewish academics; government transport offices arranged the trains for deportation to the camps; German pharmaceutical companies tested drugs on camp prisoners; companies bid for the contracts to build the crematoria; detailed lists of victims were drawn up using the Dehomag (IBM Germany) company's punch card machines, producing meticulous records of the killings. As prisoners entered the death camps, they were made to surrender all personal property, which was catalogued and tagged before being sent to Germany to be reused or recycled. Berenbaum writes that the Final Solution of the Jewish question was "in the eyes of the perpetrators ... Germany's greatest achievement."[18] Through a concealed account, the German national bank helped launder valuables stolen from the victims.

Saul Friedländer writes that: "Not one social group, not one religious community, not one scholarly institution or professional association in Germany and throughout Europe declared its solidarity with the Jews."[19] He writes that some Christian churches declared that converted Jews should be regarded as part of the flock, but even then only up to a point. Friedländer argues that this makes the Holocaust distinctive because antisemitic policies were able to unfold without the interference of countervailing forces of the kind normally found in advanced societies, such as industry, small businesses, churches, and other vested interests and lobby groups.[19]

Ghettos were established in Europe in which Jews were confined before being shipped to extermination camps

Ideology and scale

In other genocides, pragmatic considerations such as control of territory and resources were central to the genocide policy. Israeli historian and scholar Yehuda Bauer argues that:

    The basic motivation [of the Holocaust] was purely ideological, rooted in an illusionary world of Nazi imagination, where an international Jewish conspiracy to control the world was opposed to a parallel Aryan quest. No genocide to date had been based so completely on myths, on hallucinations, on abstract, nonpragmatic ideology—which was then executed by very rational, pragmatic means.[20]

German historian Eberhard Jäckel wrote in 1986 that one distinctive feature of the Holocaust was that:

    never before had a state with the authority of its responsible leader decided and announced that a specific human group, including its aged, its women and its children and infants, would be killed as quickly as possible, and then carried through this resolution using every possible means of state power.[21]

The killings were systematically conducted in virtually all areas of German-occupied territory in what are now 35 separate European countries.[22] It was at its most severe in Central and Eastern Europe, which had more than seven million Jews in 1939. About five million Jews were killed there, including three million in occupied Poland and over one million in the Soviet Union. Hundreds of thousands also died in the Netherlands, France, Belgium, Yugoslavia, and Greece. The Wannsee Protocol makes it clear that the Nazis intended to carry their "final solution of the Jewish question" to Britain and all neutral states in Europe, such as Ireland, Switzerland, Turkey, Sweden, Portugal, and Spain.[23]

Anyone with three or four Jewish grandparents was to be exterminated without exception. In other genocides, people were able to escape death by converting to another religion or in some other way assimilating. This option was not available to the Jews of occupied Europe,[24] unless their grandparents had converted before 18 January 1871. All persons of recent Jewish ancestry were to be exterminated in lands controlled by Germany.[25]

Extermination camps
Main article: Extermination camp

The use of camps equipped with gas chambers for the purpose of systematic mass extermination of peoples was a unique feature of the Holocaust and unprecedented in history. Never before had there existed places with the express purpose of killing people en masse. These were established at Auschwitz, Belzec, Chełmno, Jasenovac, Majdanek, Maly Trostenets, Sobibor, and Treblinka.

Medical experiments

Romani children in Auschwitz, victims of medical experiments

A distinctive feature of Nazi genocide was the extensive use of human subjects in "medical" experiments. According to Raul Hilberg, "German physicians were highly Nazified, compared to other professionals, in terms of party membership."[26] Some carried out experiments at Auschwitz, Dachau, Buchenwald, Ravensbrück, Sachsenhausen, and Natzweiler concentration camps.[27]

The most notorious of these physicians was Dr. Josef Mengele, who worked in Auschwitz. His experiments included placing subjects in pressure chambers, testing drugs on them, freezing them, attempting to change eye color by injecting chemicals into children's eyes, and various amputations and other surgeries.[27] The full extent of his work will never be known because the truckload of records he sent to Dr. Otmar von Verschuer at the Kaiser Wilhelm Institute was destroyed by von Verschuer.[28] Subjects who survived Mengele's experiments were almost always killed and dissected shortly afterwards.

He worked extensively with Romani children. He would bring them sweets and toys, and personally take them to the gas chamber. They would call him "Onkel (Uncle) Mengele".[29] Vera Alexander was a Jewish inmate at Auschwitz who looked after 50 sets of Romani twins:

    I remember one set of twins in particular: Guido and Ina, aged about four. One day, Mengele took them away. When they returned, they were in a terrible state: they had been sewn together, back to back, like Siamese twins. Their wounds were infected and oozing pus. They screamed day and night. Then their parents—I remember the mother's name was Stella—managed to get some morphine and they killed the children in order to end their suffering.[29]




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Re: The Holocaust (General Info.)
« Reply #1 on: September 17, 2013, 13:14:56 PM »
Development and execution


Yehuda Bauer, Raul Hilberg, and Lucy Dawidowicz maintained that from the Middle Ages onward, German society and culture were suffused with antisemitism, and that there was a direct ideological link from medieval pogroms to the Nazi death camps.[31]

The second half of the 19th century saw the emergence in Germany and Austria-Hungary of the Völkisch movement, developed by such thinkers as Houston Stewart Chamberlain and Paul de Lagarde. The movement presented a pseudoscientific, biologically based racism that viewed Jews as a race locked in mortal combat with the Aryan race for world domination.[32] Völkisch antisemitism drew upon stereotypes from Christian antisemitism, but differed in that Jews were considered to be a race rather than a religion.[33]

In a speech before the Reichstag in 1895, völkisch leader Hermann Ahlwardt called Jews "predators" and "cholera bacilli" who should be "exterminated" for the good of the German people.[34] In his best-selling 1912 book Wenn ich der Kaiser wär (If I were the Kaiser), Heinrich Class, leader of the völkisch group Alldeutscher Verband, urged that all German Jews be stripped of their German citizenship and be reduced to Fremdenrecht (alien status).[35] Class also urged that Jews should be excluded from all aspects of German life, forbidden to own land, hold public office, or participate in journalism, banking, and the liberal professions.[35] Class defined a Jew as anyone who was a member of the Jewish religion on the day the German Empire was proclaimed in 1871, or anyone with at least one Jewish grandparent.[35]

During the German Empire, völkisch notions and pseudoscientific racism had become common and accepted throughout Germany,[36] with the educated professional classes of the country, in particular, adopting an ideology of human inequality.[37] Though the völkisch parties were defeated in the 1912 Reichstag elections, being all but wiped out, antisemitism was incorporated into the platforms of the mainstream political parties.[36] The National Socialist German Workers' Party (Nazi Party; NSDAP) was founded in 1920 as an offshoot of the völkisch movement, and adopted their antisemitism.[38] In a 1986 essay, German historian Hans Mommsen wrote about the situation in post–World War I Germany that:

    If one emphasizes the indisputably important connection in isolation, one should not then force a connection with Hitler's weltanschauung [worldview], which was in no ways original itself, in order to derive from it the existence of Auschwitz ... Thoughts about the extermination of the Jews had long been current, and not only for Hitler and his satraps. Many of these found their way to the NSDAP from the Deutschvölkisch Schutz-und Trutzbund [German Racial Union for Protection and Defiance], which itself had been called into life by the Pan-German Union.[39]

Tremendous scientific and technological changes in Germany during the late 19th and early 20th centuries, together with the growth of the welfare state, created widespread hopes that utopia was at hand and that soon all social problems could be solved.[40] At the same time a racist, social Darwinist, and eugenicist world-view which declared some people to be more biologically valuable than others was common.[41] Historian Detlev Peukert states that the Shoah did not result solely from antisemitism, but was a product of the "cumulative radicalization" in which "numerous smaller currents" fed into the "broad current" that led to genocide.[42] After the First World War, the pre-war mood of optimism gave way to disillusionment as German bureaucrats found social problems to be more insoluble than previously thought, which in turn led them to place increasing emphasis on saving the biologically "fit" while the biologically "unfit" were to be written off.[43]

The economic strains of the Great Depression led many in the German medical establishment to advocate the idea of euthanisation of the "incurable" mentally and physically disabled as a cost-saving measure to free up money to care for the curable.[44] By the time the Nazis came to power in 1933, a tendency already existed in German social policy to save the racially "valuable" while seeking to rid society of the racially "undesirable".[45]

Hitler was open about his hatred of Jews. In his book Mein Kampf, he gave warning of his intention to drive them from Germany's political, intellectual, and cultural life. He did not write that he would attempt to exterminate them, but he is reported to have been more explicit in private. As early as 1922, he allegedly told Major Joseph Hell, at the time a journalist:

    Once I really am in power, my first and foremost task will be the annihilation of the Jews. As soon as I have the power to do so, I will have gallows built in rows—at the Marienplatz in Munich, for example—as many as traffic allows. Then the Jews will be hanged indiscriminately, and they will remain hanging until they stink; they will hang there as long as the principles of hygiene permit. As soon as they have been untied, the next batch will be strung up, and so on down the line, until the last Jew in Munich has been exterminated. Other cities will follow suit, precisely in this fashion, until all Germany has been completely cleansed of Jews.[46]

The German historian Hans Mommsen claimed that there were three types of antisemitism in Germany:

    One should differentiate between the cultural antisemitism symptomatic of the German conservatives – found especially in the German officer corps and the high civil administration – and mainly directed against the Eastern Jews on the one hand, and völkisch antisemitism on the other. The conservative variety functions, as Shulamit Volkov has pointed out, as something of a "cultural code." This variety of German antisemitism later on played a significant role insofar as it prevented the functional elite from distancing itself from the repercussions of racial antisemitism. Thus, there was almost no relevant protest against the Jewish persecution on the part of the generals or the leading groups within the Reich government. This is especially true with respect to Hitler's proclamation of the "racial annihilation war" against the Soviet Union.

    Besides conservative antisemitism, there existed in Germany a rather silent anti-Judaism within the Catholic Church, which had a certain impact on immunising the Catholic population against the escalating persecution. The famous protest of the Catholic Church against the euthanasia program was, therefore, not accompanied by any protest against the Holocaust.

    The third and most vitriolic variety of antisemitism in Germany (and elsewhere) is the so-called völkisch antisemitism or racism, and this is the foremost advocate of using violence. Anyhow, one has to be aware that even Hitler until 1938 and possibly 1939 still relied on enforced emigration to get rid of German Jewry; and there did not yet exist any clear-cut concept of killing them. This, however, does not mean that the Nazis elsewhere on all levels did not hesitate to use violent methods, and the inroads against Jews, Jewish shops, and institutions show that very clearly. But there did not exist any formal annihilation program until the second year of the war. It came into being after the "reservation" projects had failed. That, however, does not mean that those methods did not include a lethal component.[47]

In Germany, Sturmabteilung stormtroopers urge a national boycott of all Jewish businesses on 1 April 1933. These SA stormtroopers are outside Israel's Department Store in Berlin to deter customers. The signs read: "Germans! Defend yourselves! Don't buy from Jews." ("Deutsche! Wehrt Euch! Kauft nicht bei Juden!")[30] The store was later ransacked during Kristallnacht in 1938, then handed over to a non-Jewish family.

Legal repression and emigration

Right from the establishment of the Third Reich, Nazi leaders proclaimed the existence of a Volksgemeinschaft ("people's community"). Nazi policies divided the population into two categories, the Volksgenossen ("national comrades"), who belonged to the Volksgemeinschaft, and the Gemeinschaftsfremde ("community aliens"), who did not. Nazi policies about repression divided people into three types of enemies, the "racial" enemies such as the Jews and the Gypsies who were viewed as enemies because of their "blood"; political opponents such as Marxists, liberals, Christians and the "reactionaries" who were viewed as wayward "National Comrades"; and moral opponents such as homosexuals, the "work-shy" and habitual criminals, also seen as wayward "National Comrades".[48] The last two groups were to be sent to concentration camps for "re-education", with the aim of eventual absorption into the Volksgemeinschaft, though some of the moral opponents were to be sterilized, as they were regarded as "genetically inferior".[48]

"Racial" enemies such as the Jews could, by definition, never belong to the Volksgemeinschaft; they were to be totally removed from society.[48] German historian Detlev Peukert wrote that the National Socialists' "goal was an utopian Volksgemeinschaft, totally under police surveillance, in which any attempt at nonconformist behaviour, or even any hint or intention of such behaviour, would be visited with terror".[49] Peukert quotes policy documents on the "Treatment of Community Aliens" from 1944, which (though never implemented) showed the full intentions of Nazi social policy: "persons who ... show themselves [to be] unable to comply by their own efforts with the minimum requirements of the national community" were to be placed under police supervision, and if this did not reform them, they were to be taken to a concentration camp.[50]

Jewish refugees from Czechoslovakia being marched away by British police at Croydon airport in March 1939. They were put on a flight to Warsaw

Leading up to the March 1933 Reichstag elections, the Nazis intensified their campaign of violence against the opposition. With the co-operation of local authorities, they set up concentration camps for extrajudicial imprisonment of their opponents. One of the first, at Dachau, opened on 9 March 1933.[51] Initially the camp contained primarily communists and Social Democrats.[52] Other early prisons—for example, in basements and storehouses run by the Sturmabteilung (SA) and less commonly by the Schutzstaffel (SS)—were consolidated by mid-1934 into purpose-built camps outside the cities, run exclusively by the SS. The initial purpose of the camps was to serve as a deterrent by terrorizing those Germans who did not conform to the Volksgemeinschaft.[53] Those sent to the camps included the "educable", whose wills could be broken into becoming "National Comrades", and the "biologically depraved", who were to be sterilized, were to be held permanently, and over time were increasingly subject to extermination through labor, i.e., being worked to death.[53]

Throughout the 1930s, the legal, economic, and social rights of Jews were steadily restricted. The Israeli historian Saul Friedländer writes that, for the Nazis, Germany drew its strength "from the purity of its blood and from its rootedness in the sacred German earth."[54] On 1 April 1933, there occurred a boycott of Jewish businesses, which was the first national antisemitic campaign, initially planned for a week, but called off after one day owing to lack of popular support. In 1933, a series of laws were passed which contained Aryan paragraphs to exclude Jews from key areas: the Law for the Restoration of the Professional Civil Service, the first antisemitic law passed in the Third Reich; the Physicians' Law; and the Farm Law, forbidding Jews from owning farms or taking part in agriculture.

Jewish lawyers were disbarred, and in Dresden, Jewish lawyers and judges were dragged out of their offices and courtrooms and beaten.[55] At the insistence of then president Paul von Hindenburg, Hitler added an exemption allowing Jewish civil servants who were veterans of the First World War, or whose fathers or sons had served, to remain in office. Hitler revoked this exemption in 1937. Jews were excluded from schools and universities (the Law to Prevent Overcrowding in Schools), from belonging to the Journalists' Association, and from being owners or editors of newspapers.[54] The Deutsche Allgemeine Zeitung of 27 April 1933 wrote:

    A self-respecting nation cannot, on a scale accepted up to now, leave its higher activities in the hands of people of racially foreign origin . . . Allowing the presence of too high a percentage of people of foreign origin in relation to their percentage in the general population could be interpreted as an acceptance of the superiority of other races, something decidedly to be rejected.[56]

1935: Nazi definition of Jew, Mischling, and German and legal consequences as per the Nuremberg Laws, simplified in a 1935 chart

In July 1933, the Law for the Prevention of Hereditarily Diseased Offspring calling for compulsory sterilization of the "inferior" was passed. This major eugenic policy led to over 200 Hereditary Health Courts (Erbgesundheitsgerichte) being set up, under whose rulings over 400,000 people were sterilized against their will during the Nazi period.[57]

In 1935, Hitler introduced the Nuremberg Laws, which: prohibited Jews from marrying or having sex with "Aryans" (the Law for the Protection of German Blood and German Honor), stripped German Jews of their citizenship and deprived them of all civil rights. Hitler described the "Blood Law" in particular "the attempt at a legal regulation of a problem, which in the event of further failure would then have through law to be transferred to the final solution of the National Socialist Party". Hitler said that if the "Jewish problem" cannot be solved by these laws, it "must then be handed over by law to the National-Socialist Party for a final solution".[58] The "final solution", or "Endlösung", became the standard Nazi euphemism for the extermination of the Jews. In January 1939, he said in a public speech: "If international-finance Jewry inside and outside Europe should succeed once more in plunging the nations into yet another world war, the consequences will not be the Bolshevization of the earth and thereby the victory of Jewry, but the annihilation (vernichtung) of the Jewish race in Europe".[59] Footage from this speech was used to conclude the 1940 Nazi propaganda movie The Eternal Jew (Der ewige Jude), whose purpose was to provide a rationale and blueprint for eliminating the Jews from Europe.[60]

Jewish intellectuals were among the first to leave. The philosopher Walter Benjamin left for Paris on 18 March 1933. Novelist Leon Feuchtwanger went to Switzerland. The conductor Bruno Walter fled after being told that the hall of the Berlin Philharmonic would be burned down if he conducted a concert there: the Frankfurter Zeitung explained on 6 April that Walter and fellow conductor Otto Klemperer had been forced to flee because the government was unable to protect them against the mood of the German public, which had been provoked by "Jewish artistic liquidators".[61] Albert Einstein was visiting the US on 30 January 1933. He returned to Ostende in Belgium, never to set foot in Germany again, and calling events there a "psychic illness of the masses"; he was expelled from the Kaiser Wilhelm Society and the Prussian Academy of Sciences, and his citizenship was rescinded.[62] When Germany annexed Austria in 1938, Sigmund Freud and his family fled from Vienna to England. Saul Friedländer writes that when Max Liebermann, honorary president of the Prussian Academy of Arts, resigned his position, not one of his colleagues expressed a word of sympathy, and he was still ostracized at his death two years later. When the police arrived in 1943 with a stretcher to deport his 85-year-old bedridden widow, she committed suicide with an overdose of barbiturates rather than be taken.[62]

Kristallnacht (1938)

A synagogue burns on 10 November 1938

On 7 November 1938, Jewish minor Herschel Grünspan assassinated Nazi German diplomat Ernst vom Rath in Paris.[63] This incident was used by the Nazis as a pretext to go beyond legal repression to large-scale physical violence against Jewish Germans. What the Nazis claimed to be spontaneous "public outrage" was in fact a wave of pogroms instigated by the Nazi Party, and carried out by SA members and affiliates throughout Nazi Germany, at the time consisting of Germany proper, Austria and Sudetenland.[63] These pogroms became known as Reichskristallnacht ("the Night of Broken Glass", literally "Crystal Night"), or November pogroms. Jews were attacked and Jewish property was vandalized, over 7,000 Jewish shops and 1,668 synagogues (almost every synagogue in Germany) were damaged or destroyed.

The death toll is assumed to be much higher than the official number of 91 dead.[63] 30,000 were sent to concentration camps, including Dachau, Sachsenhausen, Buchenwald, and Oranieburg,[64] where they were kept for several weeks, and released when they could either prove that they were about to emigrate in the near future, or transferred their property to the Nazis.[65] Coinciding with Kristallnacht was the 11 November 1938 passage of Regulations Against Jews' Possession of Weapons, which made it illegal for Jews to possess firearms or other weapons (see The 1938 German Weapons Act).[66] German Jewry was collectively made responsible for restitution of the material damage of the pogroms, amounting to several hundred thousand Reichsmarks, and furthermore had to pay an "atonement tax" of more than a billion Reichsmarks.[63] After these pogroms, Jewish emigration from Germany accelerated, while public Jewish life in Germany ceased to exist.[63]

Resettlement and deportation

Before the war, the Nazis considered mass exportation of German (and subsequently the European) Jewry from Europe. Hitler's agreement to the 1938–9 Schacht Plan, and the continued flight of thousands of Jews from Hitler's clutches for an extended period when the Schacht Plan came to nothing, indicate that the preference for a concerted genocide of the type that came later did not yet exist.[67]

Plans to reclaim former German colonies such as Tanganyika and South West Africa for Jewish resettlement were halted by Hitler, who argued that no place where "so much blood of heroic Germans had been spilled" should be made available as a residence for the "worst enemies of the Germans".[68] Diplomatic efforts were undertaken to convince the other former colonial powers, primarily the United Kingdom and France, to accept expelled Jews in their colonies.[69] Areas considered for possible resettlement included British Palestine,[70] Italian Abyssinia,[70] British Rhodesia,[71] French Madagascar,[70] and Australia.[72]

Of these areas, Madagascar was the most seriously discussed. Heydrich called the Madagascar Plan a "territorial final solution"; it was a remote location, and the island's unfavorable conditions would hasten deaths.[73] Approved by Hitler in 1938, the resettlement planning was carried out by Adolf Eichmann's office, only being abandoned once the mass killing of Jews had begun in 1941. In retrospect, although futile, this plan did constitute an important psychological step on the path to the Holocaust.[74] The end of the Madagascar Plan was announced on 10 February 1942. The German Foreign Office was given the official explanation that, due to the war with the Soviet Union, Jews were to be "sent to the east".[75]

Nazi bureaucrats also developed plans to deport Europe's Jews to Siberia.[76] Palestine was the only location to which any Nazi relocation plan succeeded in producing significant results, by means of an agreement begun in 1933 between the Zionist Federation of Germany (die Zionistische Vereinigung für Deutschland) and the Nazi government, the Haavara Agreement. This agreement resulted in the transfer of about 60,000 German Jews and $100 million from Germany to Palestine, up until the outbreak of World War II.[77]

The 930 Jewish refugees aboard the MS St. Louis were refused entry to Cuba, the United States and Canada, and the ship was forced to return to Europe