‘The savage destruction of European Jewry was aided and abetted by the inaction and indifference of various groups’ (Landau). Discuss with reference to ‘Ordinary’ Germans

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‘The savage destruction of European Jewry was aided and abetted by the inaction and indifference of various groups’ (Landau). Discuss with reference to ‘Ordinary’ Germans

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  Lyndon Mukasa- The Holocaust as a History and Controversy‘The savage destruction of European Jewry was aided and abetted by the inaction and indifference of various groups !Landau"# $iscuss with reference to any one of the following%‘&rdinary 'er(ans) the Churches) the *llies) the non-Jewish population in occupied Europe# The state(ent posited by Historian +onnie Landau that ‘The savage destruction of EuropeanJewry was aided and abetted by the inaction and indifference of various groups is a strongstate(ent that is highly controversial# His state(ent is in reference to the events leading up to andduring the Holocaust of the Jews lead by ,ai 'er(any under its leader *dolf Hitler fro( ./00to ./12# 3ithin ,ai 'er(any anti-4e(itis() eugenics and race science was an i(portant featurethat for(ed the catalyst for the (ass (urder of (illions of Jews across Europe during 'er(anysca(paign fro( ./0/ until ./12# 5rior to this however anti-4e(itis( was e6pressed and pro(inent in 'er(an society and other parts of Europe# The ,ure(burg Laws of ./02 thatre(oved citienship of the Jews highlight this and can be seen as a (a7or step towards the greater  path towards the holocaust of the European Jewry# 8n the case of Landaus state(ent) an analysiswill be (ade with reference to ‘ordinary 'er(ans to deter(ine the viability of his state(ent onthe basis of inaction and indifference# *dditionally for the case of inaction and indifference) anargu(ent will be put forward to deter(ine the e6tent to which the inaction and indifference of ‘ordinary 'er(ans aided and abetted the destruction of the European Jewry# 9efore this analysis can begin however it is i(portant that a working definition for the ter(‘ordinary 'er(ans be used since the ter( as it stands is very general and potentially vague#Therefore a working definition would help further isolate the particular groups of 'er(ans for analysis and will eli(inate any crossover with the other groups listed in the :uestion# Theworking definition of ‘ordinary 'er(ans refers to all 'er(ans who were not part of the ,aigovern(ent) (ilitary or involved in the planning and construction of the state apparatus# 8t refers predo(inantly to the citiens who (ade up the bulk of the population in ,ai 'er(any whose  Lyndon Mukasa- The Holocaust as a History and Controversy‘The savage destruction of European Jewry was aided and abetted by the inaction and indifference of various groups !Landau"# $iscuss with reference to any one of the following%‘&rdinary 'er(ans) the Churches) the *llies) the non-Jewish population in occupied Europe# role consisted (ainly as the recipients of ,ai propaganda and ideology# Their value laid in thee6tent to which their support could be garnered ideologically and in labour# The idea that ‘The savage destruction of European Jewry was aided and abetted by theinaction and indifference of various groups a(ong ‘ordinary 'er(ans is proble(atic# This is because such a state(ent i(plies that no resistance of any kind e6isted or took place in ,ai'er(any# 8f Landaus state(ent is correct then it would re:uire an e6planation as to why therewas such (ass inaction and indifference a(ong ‘ordinary 'er(ans and how that i(plicated theoutbreak of the Holocaust# &ne reason why there (ay have been inaction and indifference a(ongordinary 'er(ans is that anti-4e(itis( was co((on in 'er(any long before Hitler took power and as a result a culture or tradition of pre7udice could have nu(bed already anti-4e(itic'er(ans to the attacks on the Jewish co((unity# i  Evidence suggests that the Jews had toe6perience various for(s of discri(ination in (any aspects of their life before the establish(entof the ,ai govern(ent# *s early as the (id nineteenth century) publicists such as 3olfgangMenel had beco(e outspoken in this for( of cultural anti-4e(itis(# ii  *s a result it could be that ,ais( had built on e6isting pre7udices rather than creating a new one# 3hat is known is thatanti-4e(itis( had intensified after ./00 possibly in response to a growing (inority of the Jewish population who had co(e to occupy positions of power# This could be attributed to the barrage of  ,ai propaganda that had e6panded anti-4e(itic attitudes# iii  Evidence suggests that (ost 'er(ansappeared to accept the legal e6pulsion of Jewish citiens fro( certain areas of public life to offsetwhat (any ‘ordinary 'er(ans believed were the Jews ‘special rights in those areas# *ne6a(ple of this can be seen in the Hindenburg e6e(ption of frontline veterans and their childrenfro( the *pril ./00 laws# iv  This a(ong ‘ordinary 'er(ans appeared fair and see(ed to pro(ote  Lyndon Mukasa- The Holocaust as a History and Controversy‘The savage destruction of European Jewry was aided and abetted by the inaction and indifference of various groups !Landau"# $iscuss with reference to any one of the following%‘&rdinary 'er(ans) the Churches) the *llies) the non-Jewish population in occupied Europe# a for( of social 7ustice# 9y ./0/ the (a7ority of 'er(ans were convinced that the Jews had beena har(ful influence in 'er(an society and that it would be better if those still re(aining left or were forced to leave as soon as possible# v  *s a result a relationship can be seen in which pre7udices can facilitate anti-4e(itic policy without any resistance fro( ‘ordinary 'er(ans# 9ut how when e6plaining the level of cruelty de(onstrated in ,ai 'er(any towards theJews can any level of hatred or pre7udice grow to the proportions that characterised theHolocaust; 5sychologist 4tanley Milgra( suggests that the further the distance is to which a perpetrator is fro( the victi( then it is easier to distance ones self fro( the act of cruelty# 8n(odern society others often stand between us and the final destructive act to which we contributetherefore it (akes it easier to rationalise suffering# vi  Milgra( suggests that if the organisation of that cruelty is rational in the organisation of action then the easier it is to be at peace in light of suffering# vii  This could be the case given that in ./00 the Jews (ade up roughly 2<2)<<< of the population in 'er(any out of =2 (illion people viii  (eaning that statistically (ost 'er(ans wouldnot have had close or fre:uent contact with the Jewish co((unity# The conse:uences of this arethat anti-4e(itic pre7udices and 7ustifications can flourish without the contradiction of reality#>urther(ore under this circu(stance it is easier for ‘ordinary 'er(ans to ignore and not :uestionthe cruelty inflicted on the Jewish population because it is not pressed in to their consciousnessenough to really think about# *dditionally under the ,ai state apparatus) generating anti-4e(itic propaganda it is perhaps very easy for the rationalisation of the re(oval or e6ter(ination of theJews to occur which could render an ‘ordinary 'er(an indifferent and inactive to policiesfavoring the destruction of the European Jewry# 8n the opinion of social psychologist Herbert C# ?el(an) (oral inhibitions against violent  Lyndon Mukasa- The Holocaust as a History and Controversy‘The savage destruction of European Jewry was aided and abetted by the inaction and indifference of various groups !Landau"# $iscuss with reference to any one of the following%‘&rdinary 'er(ans) the Churches) the *llies) the non-Jewish population in occupied Europe# atrocities tend to be eroded once a set of conditions are brought together# ?el(an states thatviolence (ust be authoried by official orders co(ing fro( the legally entitled :uarters) actionsare routinied by rule governed practices and e6act specification of roles and the victi(s of violence are dehu(inised by ideological definitions and indoctrinations# i6  8n this sense this (ighte6plain that inaction a(ong ‘ordinary 'er(ans to the prevention of cruelty towards the Jews(ay co(e down to a belief and legiti(iation of authority# 8n ter(s of indifference this (ay befacilitated by ideological definitions and indoctrinations) however it is worth noting that if theallowance of cruelty is based on ideology) then an argu(ent can be (ade that it is notindifference since indifference re:uires apathy whereas in this case ideology is dictating and 7ustifying inaction# 8n the case of ,ai 'er(any however there are a few contradictions that render ?el(ansopinion obsolete# 8n ter(s of violence being authoried by official orders co(ing fro( the legallyentitled :uarters) this did not necessarily apply in ,ai 'er(any# Hitler and the ,ai govern(entnever gave any orders to independent ,ai (obs to attack the Jews# 8n fact this was doneindependently a(ong enthusiasts who were acting on their own anti 4e(itic pre7udices within asociety that was increasingly glorifying the e6pulsion of the Jews through propaganda# 3hile this(ay support ?el(ans last point on the dehu(aniation of victi(s of violence by ideologicaldefinitions and indoctrinations) interestingly Hitler distanced hi(self fro( the attacks fro( the(obs on the basis of public opinion# 6  There were (any (oderate 'er(ans who had voted for  ,ai candidates and welco(ed the brutal repression of political groups such as the Co((unists but ob7ected to violence against the Jews# 6i  Many ‘ordinary 'er(ans while still anti-4e(itic saw(ob violence as an act of terroristic hooliganis( and violence against the Jews was unpopular# 6ii  Lyndon Mukasa- The Holocaust as a History and Controversy‘The savage destruction of European Jewry was aided and abetted by the inaction and indifference of various groups !Landau"# $iscuss with reference to any one of the following%‘&rdinary 'er(ans) the Churches) the *llies) the non-Jewish population in occupied Europe# Those who witnessed violence on the streets towards Jews found it unsettling and (any wereopposed to the vulgarities used to describe the Jews in ,ai propaganda# 6iii  This would appear tosupport Milgra(s study in relation to pro6i(ity to cruelty and opposition# >urther(ore it showsthat inaction and indifference did not characterie ‘ordinary 'er(ans co(pletely when it ca(e toaiding and abetting the destruction of the European Jewry# &n the other hand anti-4e(itic pre7udices were not eli(inated and the negative reaction a(ong ‘ordinary 'er(ans towards theviolence generated pressure on the ,ai govern(ent to co(e up with a decisive policy todeter(ine the legal status of the Jews in order to end the violence but also to protect 'er(aninterests# 8n ./02 the ,ure(berg Laws were created in response to this and were (et with positive public opinion fro( ‘ordinary 'er(ans# The ,ure(berg Laws essentially stripped'er(an Jews of their citienship and started the process of isolation) segregation and re(oval of the Jews fro( 'er(an society all as a prelude to the eventual Holocaust# 6iv  8t is not without :uestion that resistance (ust be e6a(ined in order to confir( or disproveLandaus state(ent# Historian 5eter Hoff(ann contends that there was resistance to the ,airegi(e within ,ai 'er(any# He states that 'er(an resistance to the ,ai govern(ent took on(any for(s and was in direct response to the dictatorial oppression) police e6cesses) persecutionof religious leaders and political opponents and (ost crucially the persecution of so called non-*ryans that included the Jews# He cites a group known as the ‘3hite +ose (ade of a group of students and a university professor who sought to create a resistance (ove(ent against the ,aigovern(ent before being beheaded in Munich in >ebruary and March ./10# 6v  4i(ilarly 3orkingclass resistance groups often (anifested itself in antigovern(ent leaflet ca(paigns# This washighly dangerous for those involved in this since it was considered high treason that was
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