Anti Semitism And The German National Pride After The Loss Of World War I

Anti Semitism And The German National Pride After The Loss Of World War I

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Anger. Anti-Semitism. Imperial ambitions. Extreme nationalism. These words delineate some of the facets that Germany dealt with during 1930s-1940s. The injured German national pride after the loss of World War I in 1918, the unfair war reparations, and Great Depression of 1929 resulted in a bitter and angry Germany that entailed a radical political change. The rising of nationalistic movements (Bolshevism and Fascism) found the right terrain to develop and embed their ideologies on the mass population during this time period. The popularity of the Nazi party skyrocketed in the late 19020’s and early 1930’s as Hitler appealed to the masses with promises that he would bring back the glorious days of a united Germany. The defeat of Germany in the First World War, according to Hitler, was mainly due to Jews and conspirators. Scapegoating of the Jews was an early sign of anti-Semitism, which became prominent when Hitler came to power (1933) as well as during the Second World War. During the war, the imperialistic intentions and hatred towards Jews of the Nazi Germany were made clear. In his book “Night” Elie Wiesel delineates the horrid events that the Jewish population faced as a result of the war aims of Germany. During this dark period in history, anti-Semitism was not only the center of war diplomacies, but it could be argued that it was one of the fundamental reasons why Germany entered a second world war.
A war loss would wound any country’s national pride. The First World War reparations on the other hand were very heavy on Germany. According to the Treaty of Versailles in 1919, Germany had to pay the Allies a sum of 26.6 billion dollars, over 58 years (Princeton.edu). This war clause led to high inflation in the German economy,...


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...mpire were two of the major motives for initiation of the war. The naiveté of the population about concentration camps and its adaptation of current events seem baffling to someone that lives in the twenty first century. How can these people see millions of Jews being liquidated from their ghettos, never coming back, and being treated like animals and not raise their voice against the Nazi Government? It is indubitable that there were many people against the “Final Solution” but many others were indifferent towards situations that were not regarding them, and it was the majority of the scared population in these countries that lead to one of the most notorious dark moments in history. It is mainly due to this passivity that the Holocaust remained unexposed for a long period of time. Just like Wiesel said, “Neutrality is good for the oppressor. Never for the victim.”

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