While the actual program of 'euthanasia' was initiated by Hitler in
1939 the whole idea of racial purity, Social Darwinism and eugenics
had been on the rise In Europe and more importantly Germany for quite
some years. The issue that called for the commencement of the program
was in fact written at the end of October but was predated 1st of
September to coincide with the start of the war, as it was
interestingly enough seen as a paralleled war by the Nazis.
The idea that Hitler and the Nazis were striving for of a perfect
'Aryan race' throughout their rule is a strongly supported one,
illustrated in Mein Kampf, the euthanasia programme was the next
logical step in the purification process before the extermination of
the Jews which both rid Germany of the socially and genetically
inferior. However there are undoubtedly other factors that played a
useful part in the decision making process of the initiation of the
euthanasia programme, such as economics i.e. how important the
financial gain was to the state and the German people. In the 1920's
particularly, books were published such as the 'Permission for the
destruction of worthless life' written by Karl Binding and Alfred
Hoche that emphasised the financial gain that would come (especially
important during war time) from the extermination of the so called
'inferior' especially those that were institutionalised.
The origins of the mentality behind these exterminations of the weak
are important to look at in regard to why the euthanasia programme
ever started up.
Charles Darwin's 'The origin of species' in 1859 was o...
... middle of paper ...
The War Against the Jews-Lucy S.Dawidowicz (St. Ives 1975)
Nazism 1919-1945 Vol.3 - J. Noakes and J. Pridlam (Exeter 1988)
From 'Mercy Death to Genocide' by Julian Reed-Purvis
The Nazi Doctors-Robert Jay Lifton (USA 2000)
1 Article, History Review, March 2003, Julian Reed-Purvis
2 Nazism 1919-1945 vol.3, Pridlam and Noakes, Page 403.
3 Nazism 1919-1945 vol.3, Pridlam and Noakes, Page 394.
4 Extract from Hoche and Binding book, 'Permission for the destruction
of worthless life' from Pridlam and Noakes, Nazism 1919-194 vol.3,
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