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Treaty of Versailles, 1919

Political Disorder: The Weimar Republic and Revolt 1918-23

International Agreements

Stresemann Era, 1923-29

The Rise of the Nazi Party, 1933

Hitler's Foreign Policy and Appeasment

The Holocaust

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Anti-Semitism and Nationalism

Hitler was friends with a pornographer called Julius Streicher. Strangely enough techniques of porn and anti-Semitic propaganda are very similar as both objectify their subjects. Objectification of the Jews enabled people to feel hatred towards them.  Through this technique Hitler attempted to use Propaganda as way to control people’s consciousness and mind. He was brainwashing the German people in supplementary programs such as Hitler Youth which required young Germans to read Mein Kampf and burn books that Hitler did not approve of. Education in Germany was extremely narrow-minded and there was no room for Intellectualism. Jews were also tormented in school. Giant public spectacles of anti-Semitism in the form of things such as public rallies were common. Formal actions against Jews were taken with the Nuremburg Laws which officially legalized anti-Semitic acts. For example, people were not allowed to see Jewish doctors. Surprisingly, this sort of act was not unique as Hitler got inspiration from Southern America.
Additionally, violence towards Jews was permitted and encouraged. November 1938, there was one night with an exceptional amount of violence, to the extent that it went down in history as Kristallnacht, a reference to all the shattered glass from the destruction. Even the police joined in the vandalizing Jewish shops and burning of synagogues. People were now doing much more than boycotting. Public violence such as this still exists today. For instance, several years ago Nepalese migrant workers were brutally killed by radical Islamists. There was a public outcry in Nepal that resulted in the murder of innocent Muslim Nepali.

In 1941, the Final Solution was devised where it was decided that the Nazis would murder Jews in order to make it as if they had never existed.  In 1943, huge numbers of people were exterminated in Gas Chambers. This was all part of the Holocaust: a time period when six million Jews perished in labor and death camps.

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Consequences

If 1930s Germany strongly promoted Jewish emigration, the Holocaust required it, but by then the passages to leave were extremely limited. The most tragic thing is that in many European countries that were occupied by the Nazis during World War Two, people did not try to stop the persecution of Jews. One of the countries that did attempt to protect Jewish citizens was Denmark. They made it more difficult for Nazis to round up Jews by doing things like everyone wearing the Star of David.

We can still see the consequences of Anti-Semitism in Germany in 1930s today. Jewish people emigrated and increasing numbers of them began to support Zionism, where the demanded the creation of Jewish State and thus began the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.
Short essay on the Israel-Palestine situation (brief overview)
National consciousness, a key theme of the 20th century, caused Jews & Palestinians to demand ‘self-determination and sovereignty’ defined by a claim to one territory. When Hitler came to power in 1933, subsequently leading to the Holocaust & the Final Solution, many European Jews turned towards Zionism & migrated to Israel, which they claimed on the basis of it being the site for the historic Jewish Kingdom promised to Abraham’s descendants. Revisionist Zionism adopted by the Likud Party sought to push the Israeli boundary east of the Jordan River, resulting in what Said would term as Israeli colonial aggression facilitated by imaginative geographies & ‘performances of space’, rationalized by the ‘War on Terror’ argument.  This rhetoric implies fear of terrorism amongst Israelis as Lieberman said, “Israel was under siege…of…homicide attacks by terrorists.” Colonialism continues because of American support. Palestinians, however, accept no less than nation status claiming they are the demographic majority, rejecting the Camp David Accord for giving it only ‘autonomy.’ But, due to (in Sharon’s words) “A long & complicated war that knows no borders” & a messy accumulation of land through mobile frontiers & constant invasions in the name of imagined geographies (1967 war where Israel was handed 77% of territory), Palestinians have struggled to keep the land they inhabited for hundreds of years despite their willingness to give up the normalcy of everyday life for the Intifada cause. British mishandling of the situation in the past & a lack of compliance with the UN declaration of two states in 1947 added to the chaos. Thus, Palestinians suffered human rights violations as 300,000 were imprisoned without trial & even tortured in 1967. 700,000 Palestinians became poverty stricken refugees living in slums due to internal displacement, 75% of whom where psychologically pressured into leaving Israeli occupied territory, which only complicated the imagined geographies situation.  They have no self-determination with 3 million living as second-class citizens in Israeli occupied territory.

Reflection

Perhaps the most ironic thing about the current situation is that the Palestinians seem to be going through what the Jews were in 1930s with regards to human rights. Moreover, it’s interesting to see that when Hitler cried Self Determination over the 3 million Germans in the Sudetenland he was handed Czechoslovakia, and whilst today 3 million Palestinians in Israel don’t have Self Determination, the world is not doing enough to solve the issue.

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