Fire and Flames
The Final Solution was something that if it were not for history textbooks, would sound like something out of a very twisted novel of film. Unfortunately, that is not the case. Having been to Dachau and seeing what just a concentration camp looks like, not even a death camp, I can assure anyone who has not been abroad that it is a place of nightmares. Dachau was actually on course to become a death camp within a short time of when the war ended. This being said, I have been in a gas chamber that was never used and it was frightening. Dimly lit, short ceilings, and simply disturbing in the manner that even being in one that was never used, you can almost feel something in the air as if people had died there. The reason I mention this at all is because the level of disturbance that could be experienced by Jews in that time period could have only been worse. Even before the Jews could be shipped to these camps, Jews were systematically killed due to their draw to their culture. In Spielvogel there is an observers writing on what happened on September 9th, 1939(1). Within this account he mentions how the police were given the task of making sure that any Jew in the area of the bombed synagogue was shot and killed. The part of this that is the most impressive to me is that there were so many people who were able to dehumanize an entire religious group and make it something acceptable to murder someone just because of their beliefs. Another part of the Final Solution that lacks sense to me is how you could go from something like the Madagascar plan to something like this in such a short span of time(2). The Madagascar plan in comparison is easier to swallow. Both are clearly wrong, but I believe that if it came to deporting or getting murdered over a religion, I would almost go willingly.
1: Spielvogel, Jackson J., and David Redles. Hitler and Nazi Germany: A History. Sixth ed. 256.
2:Sax, Benjamin C., and Dieter Kuntz. Inside Hitler’s Germany: A Documentary History of Life in the Third Reich. Lexington, Mass.: D.C. Heath, 1992. 398