Persiapan untuk Solusi Akhir dimulai

Persiapan untuk Solusi Akhir dimulai

Pada tanggal 31 Juli 1941, Hermann Göring, menulis di bawah instruksi dari Hitler, memerintahkan Reinhard Heydrich, jenderal SS dan orang nomor dua Heinrich Himmler, “untuk menyerahkan kepada saya sesegera mungkin rencana umum materi administrasi dan langkah-langkah keuangan yang diperlukan untuk melaksanakan solusi akhir yang diinginkan dari pertanyaan Yahudi.”

Goering menceritakan secara singkat garis besar untuk "solusi akhir" yang telah dibuat pada 24 Januari 1939: "emigrasi dan evakuasi dengan cara terbaik." Program yang akan menjadi pemusnahan massal dan sistematis ini mencakup “semua wilayah Eropa di bawah pendudukan Jerman.”

Heydrich sudah memiliki pengalaman dalam mengorganisir rencana semacam itu, setelah memperkenalkan kembali konsep abad pertengahan yang kejam tentang ghetto di Warsawa setelah pendudukan Jerman di Polandia. Orang-orang Yahudi berdesakan di daerah-daerah berdinding sempit di kota-kota besar dan ditahan sebagai tahanan, karena properti mereka disita dan diberikan kepada orang Jerman lokal atau petani Polandia non-Yahudi.

Di balik skema mengerikan ini, yang dilakukan bulan demi bulan, negara demi negara, adalah Hitler, yang “kelemahan terbesarnya ditemukan pada sejumlah besar rakyat tertindas yang membenci [dia] dan cara-cara amoral pemerintahannya.” Penilaian ini adalah penilaian diktator Soviet Joseph Stalin, yang diberikan pada pertemuan Kremlin pada hari yang sama, 31 Juli, dengan penasihat Amerika untuk presiden Harry Hopkins.

BACA JUGA: Holocaust


Solusi akhir

Aneka Referensi

Pada malam 9 November 1938, kekerasan anti-Yahudi yang diatur dengan hati-hati "meletus" di seluruh Reich, yang sejak Maret telah mencakup Austria. Selama 48 jam berikutnya para perusuh membakar atau merusak lebih dari 1.000 sinagoga dan mengobrak-abrik dan memecahkan jendela lebih dari 7.500…

…rakyat Jerman—mencari “solusi akhir untuk pertanyaan Yahudi,” pembunuhan semua orang Yahudi—pria, wanita, dan anak-anak—dan pemusnahan mereka dari ras manusia. Dalam ideologi Nazi yang menganggap keyahudian sebagai sesuatu yang biologis, pemusnahan orang-orang Yahudi sangat penting untuk pemurnian dan bahkan keselamatan…

…setelah melaksanakan “solusi akhir”, pemusnahan massal populasi Yahudi Eropa (Lihat Bencana). Namun, di dua negara bagian Bulgaria dan Rumania yang secara teknis merdeka, pemerintah daerah menolak menerapkan langkah-langkah ini di wilayah yang telah mereka kuasai sebelum ekspansi. Setelah perang, sebagian besar orang Yahudi yang masih hidup…

…Berlin untuk mengatur “solusi akhir untuk pertanyaan Yahudi.” Di sekeliling meja ada 15 orang yang mewakili lembaga pemerintah yang diperlukan untuk menerapkan kebijakan yang begitu berani dan menyeluruh. Bahasa pertemuannya jelas, tetapi catatan pertemuannya berhati-hati:

…Ingin merencanakan “solusi akhir” (Endlösung) untuk apa yang disebut "pertanyaan Yahudi" (Judenfrage). Pada tanggal 31 Juli 1941, pemimpin Nazi Reichsmarschall Hermann Göring telah mengeluarkan perintah kepada Reinhard Heydrich, pemimpin SS (korps paramiliter Nazi) dan kepala Gestapo (Polisi Rahasia), untuk menyiapkan rencana komprehensif untuk ini.

…kesempatan untuk mencari “solusi akhir.” Pada tahun 1939–40 Nazi mempertimbangkan untuk menggunakan Polandia atau Madagaskar sebagai tempat pembuangan orang Yahudi. Namun invasi Uni Soviet membuat Hitler, Göring, dan pemimpin SS Heinrich Himmler dan Reinhard Heydrich memberanikan diri untuk memutuskan pemusnahan massal di kamp-kamp di Belzec, Majdanek, Sobibor,…

…semua, bagaimanapun, ada Solusi Akhir dari “pertanyaan Yahudi” seperti yang diperintahkan oleh Hitler, yang berarti pemusnahan fisik orang-orang Yahudi di seluruh Eropa di mana pun pemerintahan Jerman berlaku atau di mana pengaruh Jerman sangat menentukan.

…elemen kunci dari “solusi akhir” yang diusulkan oleh pejabat SS Reinhard Heydrich di Wannsee pada 20 Januari 1942:

Peran dari

… Nazi menyebut “solusi akhir untuk pertanyaan Yahudi.” Eichmann harus mengoordinasikan detailnya demikian, meskipun belum diketahui secara umum bahwa "solusi akhir" adalah eksekusi massal, Eichmann sebenarnya telah ditunjuk sebagai kepala algojo. Setelah itu ia mengatur identifikasi, perakitan, dan pengangkutan orang-orang Yahudi…

…peran kunci dalam Solusi Akhir dan perang pemusnahan rasial Nazi di Eropa timur.

…untuk melaksanakan “solusi akhir untuk pertanyaan Yahudi”, memberinya wewenang untuk mengambil semua langkah organisasi dan administratif yang diperlukan untuk pemusnahan orang-orang Yahudi. Heydrich memimpin Konferensi Wannsee yang terkenal itu (20 Januari 1942), yang para pesertanya membahas logistik dari "solusi akhir".


"Solusi Akhir": Latar Belakang & Gambaran Umum

&ldquoSolusi Akhir dari Pertanyaan Yahudi&ldquo (dalam bahasa Jerman &ldquoEndlö-sung der Judenfrage&rdquo) adalah rencana Nazi untuk memusnahkan orang Yahudi.

Berakar pada wacana antisemit abad ke-19 tentang &ldquopertanyaan Yahudi,&rdquo &ldquoSolusi Akhir&rdquo sebagai istilah sampul Nazi menunjukkan tahap terakhir dalam evolusi kebijakan anti-Yahudi Reich Ketiga dari penganiayaan ke pemusnahan fisik dalam skala Eropa. Saat ini, Solusi Akhir digunakan secara bergantian dengan istilah lain yang lebih luas yang merujuk pada kebijakan pemusnahan Jerman selama Perang Dunia II, serta lebih khusus lagi untuk menggambarkan niat Jerman dan proses pengambilan keputusan yang mengarah ke awal pembunuhan massal sistematis.

Sementara program Partai Nazi yang diadopsi pada Februari 1920 tidak mengandung referensi langsung atau tidak langsung ke istilah tersebut, propaganda Nazi menyajikan penghapusan radikal dari segala sesuatu yang dianggap Yahudi dari semua aspek kehidupan Jerman sebagai prasyarat untuk pemulihan nasional. Setelah Hitler naik ke tampuk kekuasaan, aktivis partai dan birokrat bersaing dalam mengubah konsensus berbasis luas bahwa sesuatu harus dilakukan tentang "pertanyaan Yahudi" ke dalam kebijakan pemerintah yang ditujukan pada berbagai tingkat pemisahan, pengambilalihan, dan pemindahan fisik. Dalam prosesnya, penerapan kekuatan menjadi semakin menarik. Namun, penggunaan istilah dalam dokumen Jerman yang diproduksi sebelum tahun 1941 harus dipahami lebih sedikit sebagai ekspresi dari cetak biru yang telah terbentuk sebelumnya untuk genosida daripada sebagai ekspresi radikal, namun niat yang belum ditentukan.

Dengan dimulainya perang dan pembunuhan terorganisir terhadap kelompok-kelompok non-Yahudi yang "tidak diinginkan" di antara penduduk Jerman dalam apa yang disebut program Euthanasia, pernyataan-pernyataan niat dan harapan yang kabur dari pimpinan puncak -yang paling menonjol adalah pernyataan Hitler's Reichstag tanggal 30 Januari 1939, bahwa perang dunia baru akan membawa "pemusnahan ras Yahudi di Eropa" memberikan legitimasi dan insentif untuk kekerasan, kadang-kadang tindakan pembunuhan yang diadopsi di pinggiran yang pada gilirannya akan meradikalisasi pengambilan keputusan di Berlin. Heydrich&rsquos Schnellbrief ke Einsatzgruppen komandan di Polandia tanggal 21 September 1939, pada &ldquopertanyaan Yahudi&rdquo mengacu pada &ldquotindakan total yang direncanakan secara rahasia&rdquo (dengan demikian tujuan akhir) (&ldquodie geplanten Gesamtmaßnahmen (juga das Endziel&rdquo)) namun, sebagian besar sejarawan Holocaust saat ini setuju bahwa pada saat itu solusi ini masih dianggap dalam hal represi dan penghapusan, bukan pemusnahan. Penggunaan istilah Solusi Akhir yang lebih sering dalam dokumen-dokumen Jerman yang dimulai pada tahun 1941 menunjukkan gerakan bertahap menuju gagasan penghapusan fisik dalam konteks rencana yang hancur untuk pemukiman kembali penduduk skala besar (termasuk &ldquorencana Madagaskar&rdquo) dan harapan megalomania akan perluasan kekaisaran di Timur. Eropa. Sarjana Amerika Christopher Browning mencatat bahwa &ldquoa &ldquoa &lsquobig bang&rsquo theory&rdquo gagal untuk menggambarkan secara memadai pengambilan keputusan Jerman, sebaliknya, prosesnya diperpanjang dan bertahap, didorong oleh &ldquoa visi samar tentang genosida tersirat.&rdquo

Jika ada caesura terhadap implementasi Solusi Akhir melalui pembunuhan massal, itu ditandai dengan "perang kehancuran" Jerman yang dilancarkan terhadap Uni Soviet mulai 22 Juni 1941. Diberikan dengan instruksi yang menyerukan pengamanan cepat daerah-daerah taklukan dan bahwa menekankan sifat &ldquosub-manusia&rdquo dari strata populasi yang luas serta perlunya tindakan drastis untuk melawan ancaman mematikan yang ditimbulkan oleh &ldquoJudeo-Bolshevisme&rdquo terhadap rancangan besar Nazi, tentara Jerman, anggota SS, dan polisi membunuh orang Yahudi sejak awal. hari kampanye. Pola-pola persekusi yang berbeda secara regional terungkap hingga akhir tahun 1941 fitur yang paling menonjol &ndash memperluas cakupan pembunuhan dari laki-laki Yahudi usia militer (surat terkenal Heydrich&rsquos kepada SS- dan kepala Polisi yang lebih tinggi di Uni Soviet yang diduduki tertanggal 2 Juli 1941 , terdaftar &ldquoYahudi di posisi partai dan negara&rdquo dan &ldquoelemen radikal lainnya&rdquo di antara mereka yang akan dieksekusi) untuk perempuan dan anak-anak &ndash menggarisbawahi tidak adanya tatanan pusat dan preferensi otoritas Berlin untuk eskalasi terkendali.

Peristiwa pembunuhan di Uni Soviet yang diduduki telah &ndash seperti yang digambarkan dalam arahan Alfred Rosenberg&rsquos Kementerian Reich untuk Wilayah Timur Pendudukan &ndash memberi kepemimpinan Jerman pengalaman tentang bagaimana mencapai &ldquosolusi untuk masalah keseluruhan&rdquo (&ldquofür die Loesung des Gesamt-Masalah richtungsweisend&rdquo) yang dapat diterapkan di tempat lain. Pada tanggal 31 Juli 1941, Goering menandatangani dokumen yang menuduh Heydrich dengan &ldquomembuat semua persiapan yang diperlukan sehubungan dengan aspek organisasi, praktis dan material untuk solusi keseluruhan (&ldquoGesamtloesung&rdquo) dari masalah Yahudi di lingkungan pengaruh Jerman di Eropa&rdquo dan untuk menyusun rencana &ldquo untuk implementasi solusi akhir yang dimaksud (&ldquoEndloesung&rdquo) dari pertanyaan Yahudi.&rdquo

Pada saat Konferensi Wannsee diadakan pada tanggal 20 Januari 1942, istilah Solusi Akhir telah menjadi ungkapan umum di kalangan pejabat pemerintah dan partai Jerman. Sekarang dikurangi dalam arti sebenarnya menjadi pembunuhan massal, cakupan geografisnya diperluas di luar Eropa yang didominasi Jerman: protokol konferensi mencantumkan 11 juta orang Yahudi di berbagai negara untuk diliputi &ldquoSolusi Akhir dari pertanyaan Yahudi Eropa,&rdquo termasuk Inggris dan netral seperti Swedia dan Swiss. Puncak dari Solusi Akhir dalam deportasi massal dari berbagai bagian Eropa ke pusat-pusat pembantaian dan kamp-kamp kematian di Eropa Timur, seperti tahap-tahap awal proses, tidak dihasilkan dari satu keputusan tingkat atas tunggal, tetapi dari campuran faktor-faktor yang kompleks, dengan pusat Berlin bereaksi sebanyak itu secara aktif membentuk peristiwa.

Signifikansi historisnya menjadikan istilah Solusi Akhir sebagai contoh paling penting dari kemampuan bahasa Nazi untuk mengintegrasikan pendekatan yang berpotensi berbeda jika tidak berbeda terhadap apa yang disebut pertanyaan Yahudi ke dalam kerangka acuan konseptual yang membantu memfasilitasi pembunuhan massal sistematis dan untuk menyembunyikan yang Ketiga Kebijakan genosida Reich di balik abstraksi teknokratis, sehingga memberikan legitimasi bagi para pelaku dan memungkinkan para pengamat untuk mengklaim tidak tahu apa yang sedang terjadi. Terlepas dari masalah yang melekat, terutama dalam membangkitkan ilusi perencanaan terkoordinasi dan implementasi sistematis, istilah Solusi Akhir tetap penting untuk mengenali karakter proses Holocaust sebagai elemen kunci dalam sejarah yang lebih luas dari pembunuhan massal yang disponsori negara selama era Nazi. .

BIBLIOGRAFI

G. Aly, &ldquoSolusi Akhir&rdquo: Kebijakan Populasi Nazi dan Pembunuhan Orang Yahudi Eropa (1999) CR Browning (dengan kontribusi oleh J. Matthäus), Asal Usul Solusi Akhir: Evolusi Kebijakan Yahudi Nazi, September 1939- Maret 1942 (2004) R. Hilberg, Penghancuran Orang Yahudi Eropa (20033) P. Longerich, Politik der Vernichtung. Eine Gesamtdarstellung der nationalsozialistischen Judenverfolgung (1998).

Sumber: Ensiklopedia Judaica. © 2008 The Gale Group. Seluruh hak cipta.


Operasi Pembunuhan Besar-besaran Dimulai

Setelah invasi Jerman bulan Juni 1941 ke Uni Soviet, SS dan unit polisi (bertindak sebagai unit pembunuh keliling) memulai operasi pembunuhan besar-besaran yang ditujukan pada seluruh komunitas Yahudi. Pada musim gugur 1941, SS dan polisi memperkenalkan mobil-mobil gas keliling. Truk berpanel ini memiliki pipa knalpot yang dikonfigurasi ulang untuk memompa gas karbon monoksida beracun ke dalam ruang tertutup, membunuh mereka yang terkunci di dalamnya. Mereka dirancang untuk melengkapi operasi pemotretan yang sedang berlangsung.

Pada 17 Juli 1941, empat minggu setelah invasi ke Uni Soviet, Hitler menugaskan kepala SS Heinrich Himmler untuk bertanggung jawab atas semua masalah keamanan di Uni Soviet yang diduduki. Hitler memberi Himmler wewenang yang luas untuk secara fisik menghilangkan segala ancaman yang dirasakan terhadap pemerintahan Jerman yang permanen. Dua minggu kemudian, pada tanggal 31 Juli 1941, pemimpin Nazi Hermann Goering memberi wewenang kepada Jenderal SS Reinhard Heydrich untuk membuat persiapan pelaksanaan "solusi lengkap dari masalah Yahudi."


'Asal usul dari Solusi Akhir'

Dalam dua tahun singkat antara musim gugur 1939 dan musim gugur 1941, kebijakan Yahudi Nazi meningkat pesat dari kebijakan emigrasi paksa sebelum perang ke Solusi Akhir seperti yang sekarang dipahami-upaya sistematis untuk membunuh setiap orang Yahudi terakhir dalam genggaman Jerman . Pembunuhan massal terhadap kaum Yahudi Soviet telah dimulai pada akhir musim panas tahun 1941, dan hanya setengah tahun kemudian rezim Nazi siap untuk mulai menerapkan kebijakan ini di seluruh imperium Eropa dan lingkup pengaruhnya. Studi selama 30 bulan ini—dari September 1939 hingga Maret 1942—sangat penting untuk memahami asal usul Solusi Akhir dan merupakan inti dari buku ini. Pada saat ini rezim Nazi berdiri di ambang peristiwa penting dalam sejarah. Tetapi mengapa, setelah dua milenium antagonisme Kristen-Yahudi dan satu milenium anti-Semitisme Eropa tunggal, peristiwa penting ini terjadi di Jerman pada pertengahan abad ke-20?

Orang-orang Kristen dan Yahudi telah hidup dalam hubungan permusuhan sejak abad pertama era umum, ketika para pengikut awal Yesus gagal meyakinkan banyak orang Yahudi bahwa dia adalah Mesias. Mereka kemudian secara bertahap memantapkan identitas mereka sebagai agama baru daripada sekte Yahudi yang sedang mereformasi. Pertama, Kekristenan Pauline mengambil langkah untuk mencari petobat tidak hanya di antara orang Yahudi tetapi juga di antara populasi pagan di Kekaisaran Romawi. Kedua, para penulis Injil—sekitar 40 sampai 60 tahun setelah kematian Yesus—berusaha menenangkan otoritas Romawi dan pada saat yang sama menstigmatisasi saingan mereka dengan semakin menggambarkan orang Yahudi daripada otoritas Romawi di Palestina sebagai pihak yang bertanggung jawab atas penyaliban- asal usul tulisan suci dari fitnah "Pembunuh Kristus" yang menentukan. Akhirnya, pemberontakan Yahudi di Palestina dan penghancuran Bait Suci Kedua memotivasi orang-orang Kristen mula-mula tidak hanya untuk melepaskan diri sepenuhnya dari orang-orang Yahudi, tetapi juga untuk melihat malapetaka Yahudi sebagai hukuman yang pantas atas penolakan keras kepala untuk menerima Yesus sebagai Mesias dan sebagai Tuhan. pembenaran atas keyakinan mereka sendiri. Kristen dan Yahudi, dua sekte kecil yang memiliki lebih banyak kesamaan satu sama lain berdasarkan monoteisme dan kitab suci mereka daripada keduanya dengan sisa dunia Romawi pagan yang toleran, sinkretis, dan politeistik, mengembangkan permusuhan yang keras satu sama lain.

Permusuhan ini menjadi signifikan secara historis dalam perjalanan abad keempat ketika, setelah pertobatan Kaisar Konstantinus, agama Kristen menjadi yang pertama disukai dan kemudian agama resmi Kekaisaran Romawi. Pertengkaran agama antara dua sekte kecil dan relatif tidak berdaya, keduanya bertentangan dengan dunia pagan di mana mereka hidup, tiba-tiba berubah menjadi hubungan yang tidak setara antara agama negara yang menang dan minoritas agama yang terkepung. Meski begitu, orang-orang Yahudi bernasib lebih baik daripada orang-orang kafir. Orang-orang Kristen yang menang menghancurkan paganisme dan merobohkan kuil-kuilnya tetapi sinagoga-sinagoga dibiarkan berdiri, dan Yudaisme tetap sebagai satu-satunya agama yang diizinkan secara hukum di luar Kekristenan. Tanpa standar ganda intoleransi-paganisme dihancurkan dan Yudaisme dihina tetapi diizinkan-tidak akan ada sejarah lebih lanjut dari hubungan Kristen-Yahudi.

Kekristenan yang tampaknya berjaya segera menghadapi serangkaian bencana selama berabad-abad. Ketika kemerosotan demografis dan ekonomi mengikis kekuatan Kekaisaran Romawi yang dikristenkan dari dalam, provinsi-provinsi barat terfragmentasi dan runtuh di bawah pengaruh invasi Jermanik yang jumlahnya agak sedikit dari utara. Invasi Hun dari timur kemudian mereda, tetapi tidak demikian dengan invasi Muslim berikutnya, yang menyerbu keluar dari Jazirah Arab dan menaklukkan separuh dunia Romawi kuno pada akhir abad ketujuh. Di daerah yang ditakdirkan untuk menjadi Eropa Barat, kota-kota-bersama dengan budaya urban dan ekonomi uang-hampir seluruhnya menghilang. Populasi yang sangat menyusut-buta huruf, miskin, dan berkerumun di desa-desa terpencil yang mencari nafkah dari pertanian subsisten primitif yang terhuyung-huyung di bawah dampak invasi Viking yang menghancurkan lebih lanjut dari Skandinavia dan Magyar dari Asia Tengah pada abad kesembilan dan kesepuluh . Baik mayoritas Kristen maupun minoritas Yahudi di Eropa Barat tidak dapat menemukan banyak penghiburan di abad-abad penderitaan dan kemunduran ini.

Pemulihan besar-demografis, ekonomi, budaya, dan politik-dimulai sesaat sebelum milenium. Populasi meledak, kota tumbuh, kekayaan berlipat ganda, monarki terpusat mulai menang atas anarki feodal, universitas ditemukan, harta budaya dunia klasik dipulihkan, dan perbatasan Susunan Kristen barat mulai meluas.

Tetapi transformasi besar itu tidak membawa manfaat yang sama bagi semua. "Krisis modernisasi" besar pertama di Eropa, " seperti transformasi mendalam semacam itu, memiliki "pecundang sosial"nya. Kelebihan prajurit berkuda yang tidak puas-elit feodal Eropa menghadapi peluang dan saluran yang terbatas. Ekonomi uang baru dan masyarakat perkotaan mengikis hubungan manorial tradisional. Memperluas literasi dan pendidikan universitas, ditambah dengan penemuan rasionalisme Aristotelian yang memabukkan, merupakan ancaman potensial dan meresahkan bagi iman Kristen tradisional. Pertumbuhan, kemakmuran, dan antusiasme keagamaan disertai dengan kebingungan, frustrasi, dan keraguan.

Untuk semua yang baru dan meresahkan, tidak dapat dipahami dan mengancam, dalam krisis modernisasi ini, minoritas Yahudi memberikan simbol yang tepat. Anti-Yudaisme (dan "pengajaran penghinaan") dari teolog Kristen yang menjadi ciri milenium pertama antagonisme Kristen-Yahudi dengan cepat digantikan oleh apa yang oleh Gavin Langmuir disebut "xenophobia" anti-Semitisme-sebuah stereotip negatif yang dipegang secara luas yang terdiri dari berbagai pernyataan yang tidak menggambarkan minoritas Yahudi yang sebenarnya, melainkan melambangkan berbagai ancaman dan ancaman yang tidak dapat dan tidak ingin dipahami oleh mayoritas Kristen. Sekelompok insiden anti-Yahudi pada akhir dekade pertama abad ke-11 menandakan perubahan yang menjadi lebih jelas dengan pembunuhan pogrom yang dilakukan oleh gerombolan ksatria keliling dalam perjalanan mereka ke Perang Salib Pertama. Dalam kata-kata Langmuir, "Kelompok-kelompok ini tampaknya terdiri dari orang-orang yang rasa identitasnya telah dirusak secara serius oleh kondisi sosial yang berubah dengan cepat yang tidak dapat mereka kendalikan atau pahami dan yang tidak dapat mereka adaptasi dengan sukses."

Perkotaan, komersial, nonmiliter, dan di atas semua orang yang tidak percaya, orang-orang Yahudi menjadi sasaran ancaman langsung pogrom pertama Eropa dan ancaman jangka panjang dari stereotip negatif yang semakin intensif. Dihalangi dari profesi terhormat berperang dan memiliki tanah, sering juga dilarang dari kegiatan ekonomi bergengsi yang dikendalikan melalui serikat oleh mayoritas Kristen, minoritas Yahudi dicap tidak hanya sebagai orang yang tidak percaya tetapi sekarang juga sebagai pengecut, parasit, dan rentenir. Anti-Semitisme yang didorong oleh agama mengambil dimensi ekonomi, sosial, dan politik.

Pada abad-abad berikutnya, stereotip negatif anti-Semitisme xenofobia diintensifkan dan ditutupi oleh tuduhan-tuduhan fantastik dan gila, seperti dugaan praktik pembunuhan ritual dan penyiksaan Hosti. Tuduhan semacam itu tampaknya berasal dari tindakan individu yang terganggu yang menemukan cara untuk mengatasi masalah psikologis mereka sendiri dengan cara yang dapat diterima secara sosial. Di tanah subur anti-Semitisme xenofobia, chimera semacam itu berlipat ganda dan menyebar, dan akhirnya dianut dan dilegitimasi oleh pihak berwenang. Ketika orang-orang Yahudi semakin tidak manusiawi dan menjadi setan, anti-Semitisme pada periode abad pertengahan memuncak dalam pengusiran dan pembantaian luas yang menyertai Maut Hitam.

Anti-Semitisme di Eropa Barat kini tertanam begitu dalam dan meresap dalam budaya Kristen sehingga ketiadaan orang Yahudi sejati tidak berdampak pada permusuhan yang meluas di masyarakat terhadap mereka. Di Spanyol, tanah pengusiran terakhir dan terbesar orang Yahudi, bahkan konversi semakin dirasakan tidak memadai untuk mengatasi apa yang sekarang dianggap sebagai kejahatan bawaan Yahudi. Orang-orang Marranos menjadi sasaran penganiayaan dan pengusiran yang terus-menerus, dan gagasan tentang orang Kristen berdarah murni—perkembangan yang sangat menakutkan 500 tahun kemudian—diartikulasikan.

Orang-orang Yahudi Eropa selamat dari semburan penganiayaan yang meningkat ini karena Gereja, meskipun menyetujuinya, juga membatasinya. Dan batas-batas yang dapat ditembus memungkinkan orang-orang Yahudi yang diusir untuk melarikan diri dan menetap di tempat lain. (Abad ke-20, sebaliknya, tidak akan menampilkan batas-batas yang dapat ditembus dan batas-batas agama yang efektif.) Penurunan lambat akhirnya dalam virulensi anti-Semitisme bukan karena relatif tidak adanya orang Yahudi di banyak bagian Eropa Barat melainkan hingga sekularisasi bertahap masyarakat Eropa modern awal-humanisme Renaisans, pecahnya persatuan agama dalam Reformasi, penemuan ilmiah Galileo dan Newton pada abad ke-17, dan Pencerahan. Eropa Barat bukan lagi persemakmuran Kristen dengan agama sebagai inti budaya dan identitasnya.

Selama jeda relatif ini, orang-orang Yahudi menyaring kembali ke beberapa wilayah Eropa barat dari mana mereka sebelumnya telah diusir. Namun, pusat demografis Yahudi Eropa sekarang jelas berlabuh di timur. Orang-orang Yahudi mulai menetap di Eropa timur pada periode abad pertengahan, sering disambut oleh penguasa lokal untuk fungsi ekonomi pelengkap yang mereka lakukan, dan pada abad ke-18 telah terjadi ledakan populasi Yahudi yang sesungguhnya. Semua orang Eropa-Yahudi dan non-Yahudi-sangat terpengaruh oleh "Revolusi Ganda" pada akhir abad ke-18 dan awal abad ke-19. Revolusi Perancis menandai munculnya liberalisme dan nasionalisme Revolusi Industri menggerakkan transformasi ekonomi dan sosial yang mendalam.

Awalnya Revolusi Ganda tampaknya merupakan anugerah besar bagi orang-orang Yahudi Eropa. Dengan liberalisme datang "emansipasi Yahudi" Dalam beberapa dekade singkat, akumulasi selama berabad-abad tindakan diskriminatif dan anti-Yahudi memberi jalan kepada doktrin liberal tentang kesetaraan di depan hukum dan kebebasan hati nurani-tidak hanya di Inggris dan Prancis tetapi bahkan di kekaisaran Jerman dan Austro-Hungaria yang otokratis. Dan Revolusi Industri membuka peluang ekonomi yang belum pernah terjadi sebelumnya bagi minoritas yang bergerak, berpendidikan, mudah beradaptasi dengan sedikit ikatan dan sedikit nostalgia untuk ekonomi dan masyarakat tradisional yang menurun di mana mereka telah begitu dibatasi dan terpinggirkan.

Namun pada akhirnya "krisis modernisasi" besar kedua di Eropa itu penuh dengan bahaya yang bahkan lebih besar bagi orang-orang Yahudi daripada yang pertama, hampir satu milenium sebelumnya. Sekali lagi "pecundang sosial" dari krisis modernisasi-elit tradisional dan produsen skala kecil khususnya-dapat menemukan pada orang-orang Yahudi simbol yang nyaman untuk penderitaan mereka. Jika orang-orang Yahudi mendapat manfaat dari perubahan yang menghancurkan cara hidup tradisional Eropa, di benak banyak orang tampaknya masuk akal bahwa merekalah yang menjadi penyebab perubahan ini. Tetapi di dunia yang jauh lebih sekuler dan ilmiah pada abad ke-19, keyakinan agama memberikan kekuatan yang kurang menjelaskan. Bagi banyak orang, perilaku Yahudi harus dipahami sebagai akibat dari karakteristik ras Yahudi yang diduga tidak dapat diubah. Implikasi dari anti-Semitisme rasial menimbulkan jenis ancaman yang berbeda. Jika sebelumnya mayoritas Kristen menekan orang Yahudi untuk pindah agama dan baru-baru ini untuk berasimilasi, anti-Semitisme rasial tidak memberikan pelarian perilaku. Yahudi sebagai ras tidak bisa mengubah nenek moyang mereka. Mereka hanya bisa menghilang.

Jika ras daripada agama sekarang memberikan alasan untuk anti-Semitisme, berbagai elemen stereotip anti-Semit negatif yang telah terakumulasi selama paruh kedua Abad Pertengahan diambil alih hampir seluruhnya dan membutuhkan sedikit pembaruan. Satu-satunya tambahan yang signifikan adalah tuduhan bahwa orang Yahudi bertanggung jawab atas ancaman revolusi Marxis. Dengan sedikit memperhatikan konsistensi logis, citra negatif lama orang Yahudi sebagai lintah darat parasit (diperbarui sebagai kapitalis rakus) dilengkapi dengan citra baru orang Yahudi sebagai revolusioner subversif untuk menghancurkan properti pribadi dan kapitalisme dan menjungkirbalikkan tatanan sosial. Setelah tahun 1917 gagasan tentang "Yahudi-Bolshevisme" menjadi mengakar di kalangan konservatif Eropa seperti halnya gagasan tentang orang Yahudi sebagai "pembunuh Kristus" telah ada di kalangan orang Kristen Eropa.

Perkembangan dalam sejarah anti-Semitisme ini melampaui batas-batas nasional dan bersifat pan-Eropa. Lalu mengapa orang Jerman, di antara orang-orang Eropa, memainkan peran yang begitu menentukan dalam klimaks pembunuhan yang dicapai pada pertengahan abad ke-20? Para ahli telah menawarkan sejumlah interpretasi "jalur khusus" Jerman atau Sonderweg, dengan Inggris dan Prancis biasanya menjadi standar atau norma yang digunakan untuk mengukur perbedaan Jerman. Salah satu pendekatan menekankan perkembangan budaya/ideologi Jerman. Kebencian dan reaksi terhadap penaklukan dan perubahan yang dipaksakan oleh Prancis revolusioner dan Napoleon meningkatkan pelukan Jerman yang terdistorsi dan tidak lengkap dari Pencerahan dan cita-cita liberal dan demokrasi "barat". Antiwesternisme dari banyak intelektual Jerman dan keputusasaan mereka untuk dunia tradisional yang semakin terancam dan hancur menyebabkan penolakan terus-menerus terhadap nilai-nilai demokrasi liberal di satu sisi dan rekonsiliasi selektif dengan aspek modernitas (seperti teknologi modern dan rasionalitas tujuan akhir) di sisi lain, menghasilkan apa yang Jeffrey Herf sebut sebagai "modernisme reaksioner" khas Jerman

Menurut pendekatan sosial/struktural lainnya, perpecahan dan perpecahan politik yang berkepanjangan di Jerman—berlawanan dengan Inggris dan Prancis—memberikan lingkungan yang kurang kondusif bagi pembangunan ekonomi dan kebangkitan kelas menengah yang sehat. Revolusi nasional-liberal yang gagal pada tahun 1848 mengakhiri upaya Jerman untuk berkembang di sepanjang garis, apalagi mengejar, Prancis dan Inggris dalam modernisasi politik dan ekonomi yang bersamaan. Setelah itu, elit Jerman pra-kapitalis mempertahankan hak istimewa mereka dalam sistem politik otokratis, sementara kelas menengah yang terkesima dipuaskan oleh penyatuan nasional melalui kekuatan militer Prusia, sesuatu yang tidak dapat mereka capai melalui upaya revolusioner mereka sendiri, dan dibeli oleh kekuatan militer Prusia berikutnya. kemakmuran modernisasi ekonomi yang cepat yang dilepaskan oleh penyatuan ini. Takut akan meningkatnya sosialisme dan dimanipulasi oleh "imperialisme sosial" yang meningkat, kelas menengah Jerman tidak pernah menjadi andalan pusat demokrasi-liberal yang kuat seperti yang terjadi dalam budaya politik Inggris dan Prancis. Jerman menjadi bangsa "schizophrenic"-masyarakat dan ekonomi yang semakin modern diperintah oleh monarki otokratis dan elit tradisional-tidak mampu melakukan reformasi demokrasi bertahap.

Dikutip dari The Origins of the Final Solution oleh Christopher R. Browning Hak Cipta © 2004 oleh Univ. dari Nebraska Pers. Dikutip dengan izin.

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UU Pemberdayaan

Selama beberapa hari berikutnya, hingga pemilihan umum pada tanggal 5 Maret, Teror Coklat Nazi pecah. Dengan membuat ancaman Komunis palsu “resmi,” Hitler membuat jutaan orang Jerman panik. Penangkapan sewenang-wenang berlipat ganda sementara truk Stormtroopers mengamuk di jalan-jalan, mendobrak masuk ke rumah-rumah, mengumpulkan para korban, termasuk banyak orang Yahudi, dan membawa mereka ke barak S.A. di mana mereka dipukuli dan disiksa. Nazi menerima 44 persen suara dalam pemilihan Maret.

Pada tanggal 23 Maret, Reichstag terakhir bertemu di sebuah gedung opera, dikelilingi oleh pasukan S.S. dan dipenuhi dengan Stormtroopers di dalamnya. Sebagian besar dari Komunis dan sejumlah deputi Sosialis telah ditangkap. Suara dari Partai Tengah sangat penting bagi Hitler dalam mendapatkan dua pertiga mayoritas yang diperlukan untuk meloloskan Undang-Undang yang Memungkinkan, dan ini mereka berikan, sehingga memberinya kekuatan sewenang-wenang yang dia dambakan. Dia sekarang bisa menggunakan kekuatan ini tanpa Reichstag, dan mengabaikan Konstitusi. Semua partai politik oposisi dihancurkan atau dibubarkan sendiri. Serikat pekerja dilikuidasi. Pendeta oposisi ditangkap. Partai Nazi, dalam kata-kata Hitler, telah menjadi negara. Pada Agustus 1934, ketika Hindenburg meninggal, Hitler juga menjadi panglima angkatan bersenjata serta Presiden dan Führer dari Reich Jerman kepada siapa setiap perwira dan individu dalam angkatan bersenjata berjanji untuk patuh tanpa syarat.


Perlawanan di Ghetto

Orang-orang Yahudi menanggapinya dengan berbagai upaya perlawanan. Penduduk ghetto sering menyelundupkan makanan, obat-obatan, senjata, atau intelijen melintasi dinding ghetto. Ini dan kegiatan semacam itu sering terjadi tanpa sepengetahuan atau persetujuan dewan Yahudi. Di sisi lain, beberapa dewan Yahudi dan beberapa anggota dewan individu menoleransi atau mendorong penyelundupan karena barang-barang itu diperlukan untuk menjaga penduduk ghetto tetap hidup.

Secara prinsip, orang Jerman pada umumnya tidak terlalu peduli dengan peribadatan keagamaan, kehadiran di acara-acara budaya, atau partisipasi dalam gerakan pemuda di dalam tembok ghetto. Namun, mereka sering melihat "ancaman keamanan" dalam pertemuan sosial apa pun dan akan bergerak dengan kejam untuk memenjarakan atau membunuh pemimpin dan peserta yang dianggap sebagai biang keladi. Jerman umumnya melarang segala bentuk sekolah atau pendidikan yang konsisten.

Pada awalnya, ibu saya dan beberapa wanita lain menyelenggarakan sekolah rahasia untuk anak-anak di bawah usia kerja, dan itu adalah hal yang luar biasa karena kami memiliki sesuatu untuk dinantikan.
—Charlene Schiff

In some ghettos, members of Jewish resistance movements staged armed uprisings. The largest of these was the Warsaw ghetto uprising in spring 1943. There were also violent revolts in Vilna, Bialystok, Czestochowa, and several smaller ghettos.


The Final Solution

It is not known when Hitler formed the intention of the &ldquofinal solution of the Jewish question&rdquo on the scale of the European continent. The conference in Wannsee on January 20, 1942 considered only the details of the undertaking: the methods for organizing the deportation and ensuring the cooperation of the civilian administration. Overall, the plans called for the murder of 11 million Jews living in Germany, the occupied territory, the states opposed to the Third Reich, and the allied and neutral countries.

The first killing center set up in occupied Polish lands was the camp at Chełmno on the Ner Jews brought in from the ghettos in the Wartheland were being killed there from December 1941. Three more camps, somewhat larger, were opened at Bełżec, Sobibor, and Treblinka (in what was known as &ldquoAktion Reinhard&rdquo) somewhat later, between March and July 1942.

In Auschwitz, the murdering of prisoners in gas chambers began even earlier, when 575 sick and disabled prisoners were sent to their deaths at the euthanasia center in Germany at the end of June 1941. At the beginning of September, the SS used Zyklon B gas in the cellars of block 11 to kill about 600 Soviet POWs and another group of patients from the camp hospital. Soviet POWs and Jews brought from Upper Silesia were killed in the gas chamber in crematorium I over the following months. It was probably at the end of March or in April 1942 that the Germans began killing sick prisoners and Jews in a provisional gas chamber in Birkenau (the so-called &ldquolittle red house&rdquo). The tempo of atrocities increased in June and July 1942, with transports of Jews sent to Auschwitz being subjected to systematic &ldquoselections&rdquo during which SS doctors sentenced people classified as unfit for labor to death.

At the same time, the Germans set about liquidating the ghettos in occupied Poland. July 22, 1942, when the deportation of Jews from Warsaw to the death camp in Treblinka began, is regarded as a symbolic date. A decided majority of the Polish Jews were killed in a little over half a year, after which the SS began liquidating the Aktion Reinhard camps. However, the last great death camp&mdashAuschwitz&mdashremained in existence until the beginning of 1945. It was mainly Jews from Western and Southern Europe, from the liquidated labor camps, and the ghettos in Sosnowiec and Łódź, who died in the gas chambers there.


Holocaust Denial: Background & Overview

One of the most notable anti-Semitic propaganda movements to develop over the past two decades has been the organized effort to deny or minimize the established history of Nazi genocide against the Jews. In the United States, the movement has been known in recent years primarily through the publication of editorial-style advertisements in college campus newspapers. The first of these ads claimed to call for "open debate on the Holocaust" it purported to question not the fact of Nazi anti-Semitism, but merely whether this hatred resulted in an organized killing program. A more recent ad has questioned the authenticity of the U.S. Holocaust Memorial Museum in Washington, DC. These ads have been published in several dozen student newspapers on campuses across the country.

Similar propaganda has established a beachhead on the computer Internet. In addition to creating their own home pages, Holocaust deniers have sometimes "crashed" the sites of legitimate Holocaust and Jewish discussion groups in a blatant effort at anti, Jewish provocation and self-promotion. Additionally, Holocaust deniers have advertised their Web sites by purchasing innocuous-sounding, inconspicuous classified ads in college and community newspapers.

These paid advertisements and Internet activities have been a national phenomenon since 1991. Though there is no evidence that they have persuaded large numbers of students to doubt the settled record of events which comprise the Holocaust, their appearance has generated acrimony and has frequently caused friction between Jewish and non-Jewish students.

This is precisely the intent of the Holocaust deniers: by attacking the facts of the Holocaust, and by framing this attack as merely an unorthodox point of view, their propaganda insinuates subtle but hateful anti-Semitic beliefs of Jews as exploiters of non-Jewish guilt and Jews as controllers of academia or the media. These beliefs, in fact, bear comparison to the preachings which brought Hitler to power in prewar Germany.

This pamphlet has been designed to provide a brief summary of the propaganda campaign known as Holocaust "revisionism," or Holocaust denial. What follows is (1) a "Q&A" description of the movement, its history, and its leading activists, as well as a review of legal and scholarly responses to this propaganda (2) a summary of the movement's most common allegations, with brief factual responses, and (3) a selection of quotes by the leading propagandists, demonstrating their anti-Semitic and pro-Nazi agendas.

It is highly unlikely that this report will dissuade the Holocaust deniers from their mendacious and hateful campaign. But this information should provide students and educators with the facts to make informed decisions and vigorous responses to these bigoted lies.

The Denial Movement: Important Notes

1. What is Holocaust denial?

Holocaust denial is a propaganda movement active in the United States, Canada and Western Europe which seeks to deny the reality of the Nazi regime's systematic mass murder of 6 million Jews in Europe during World War II.

2. Who started the movement?

The roots of Holocaust denial can be found in the bureaucratic language of Nazi policy itself, which sought to camouflage the genocidal intent of what the Nazis called the "Final Solution to the Jewish Question," even as these directives were being carried out. After the war, former Nazis and Nazi sympathizers dismissed the overwhelming proof of the Holocaust established at the Nuremberg war crimes trials similarly, an obscure group of post-War French Trotskyists and anarchists led by Paul Rassinier (since deceased), seeking to advance their own political agenda, denounced evidence of the genocide as "Stalinist atrocity propaganda."

However, as an organized propaganda movement, Holocaust "revisionism" took root in 1979 when Willis Carto, founder of Liberty Lobby - the largest anti-Jewish propaganda organization in the United States - incorporated the Institute for Historical Review (IHR). The IHR is a pseudo-academic enterprise in which professors with no credentials in history (for example, the late Revilo P. Oliver was a retired University of Illinois Classics teacher Robert Faurisson earned a Ph.D. in literature from the University of Lyon Arthur Butz is an engineer at Northwestern University), writers without formal academic certification (such as David Irving, Henri Roques and Bradley Smith), and career anti-Semites (such as Mark Weber, Ernst Zündel and the late David McCalden) convene to develop new outlets for their anti-Jewish, anti-Israel and, for some, pro, Nazi beliefs.

Since 1993, Willis Carto has broken with the IHR in a very public, litigious feud. He has devoted considerable funds and rhetorical vehemence to dis. crediting his former employees, and has also established a rival "revisionist" journal, The Barnes Review. At issue in the feud, primarily, is not the history of the Holocaust - which both sides of the dispute argue never really happened - but rather Carto's reportedly dictatorial management style, and the control of a multimillion-dollar bequest to the parent corporation of the IHR. Although the dispute remains in litigation, as of this writing a Superior Court Judge in California has awarded $6.4 million to the IHR in their civil suit against Carto. The judge, in his ruling for the Institute, characterized Carto as "evasive and argumentative" and added that his testimony in large part "made no sense. By the end of the trial, I was of the opinion that Mr. Carto lacked candor, lacked memory and lacked the ability to be forthright about what he did honestly remember" ironically, this description could accurately characterize the entire propaganda movement which Carto founded.

3. Where is Holocaust denial active today?

IHR has tapped into an international network of propagandists who write for the group's Journal dari Historical Review (JHR) and meet at its more-or-less annual conventions. The leading activists affiliated with IHR have included Mark Weber, Bradley Smith and Fred Leuchter (USA) Ernst Zündel (Canada) David Irving (England) Robert Faurisson (France) Carlo Mattogno (Italy) and Ahmed Rami (Sweden). Of these activists, Bradley Smith, who served for many years as IHR's "Media Project Director," has attracted the most notoriety in the U.S., due to the series of "revisionist" advertisements which he has placed in college newspapers since 1991 for the Committee for Open Debate on the Holocaust (CODOH).

Nonetheless, IHR has suffered noticeably from its feud with Carto. Since breaking with its founder in 1993, the professional staff at the Institute has shrunk from seven to two - Mark Weber, now serving as director, and Greg Raven, who operates IHR's World Wide Web site - and its increasingly infrequent publications have consisted mostly of reprints from previous issues of the Journal dari Historical Review, along with at times desperate appeals for funding. Most recently, IHR announced that its 1996 conference would be postponed indefinitely.

4. What is CODOH?

Though Smith claims the "Committee" is an independent entity devoted to promoting "open debate," it has operated essentially as a vehicle for IHR propaganda. CODOH was first headed by Smith and Mark Weber, then-editor of the JHR its founder was the late William Curry, a longtime supporter of the IHR. Every other associate of the group has also been a public participant in IHR conferences. CODOH ads and flyers list the IHR address and cite IHR sources almost exclusively. Additionally, Bradley Smith's Web page on the computer Internet - which is fairly elaborate and has constituted the bulk of his activity since 1995 -provides links to the IHR site, as well as other Holocaust-denial outlets. Smith, moreover, appears to have suffered from

the same decline in fortune affecting the IHR. He has not written a new editorial-style advertisement since 1993, and his pre-existing ads appeared in only seven newspapers in 1995, and one in 1996, down from 13 in 1993. Instead, Smith's current campus outreach tends to consist of inconspicuous, anonymous classified ads promoting his Web site the only indication of Smith's agenda in these ads is a reference to "Unanswered Questions About the Nazi Gas Chambers."

5. Are there others promoting Holocaust denial on the Internet?

In addition to overt neo-Nazi groups, such as the National Alliance, 1 which promote denial of the Holocaust as part of a comprehensive racist and anti-Semitic agenda, one of the most active Holocaust deniers on the computer Internet is the German-born Canadian hatemonger Ernst Zündel Zündel whose anti-Semitic activities extend back to the mid-70s, and include associations with the IHR and the neo-Nazi publication, Liberty Bell, as well as the authorship of books such as The Hitler We Loved and Why, has established perhaps the most extensive Holocaust-denial Web site on the Internet. Often updated daily, Zündel's home page, operated by a previously obscure Southern California writer named Ingrid Rimland, publishes materials in English, French and German and includes audio recordings of Zündel's own speeches. In addition to his Internet activities - which he, like Bradley Smith, promotes by purchasing inconspicuous ads in college and local newspapers - Zündel also produces a cable-access TV program as well as German and English-language shortwave radio broadcasts, each of which is also devoted to Holocaust denial.

6. Are there laws regulating Holocaust denial?

In Canada and Western Europe, Holocaust deniers have been successfully prosecuted under racial defamation or hate crimes laws. In the United States, however, the First Amendment guarantees the right of free speech, regardless of political content. Nonetheless, though the First Amendment guarantees Holocaust deniers the right to produce and distribute their propaganda, it in no way obligates newspapers or other media outlets to provide them with a forum for their views.

7. What do American legal precedents indicate about propaganda?

The U.S. Supreme Court ruled in a 1974 decision, Miami Herald Publishing Company v. Tornillo , that "A newspaper is more than a passive receptacle or conduit for news, comment and advertising. The choice of material to go into a newspaper. [constitutes] the exercise of editorial control and judgment." Simply stated, to require newspaper editors or broadcasters to provide Smith, or any other individual, with a forum would deny the newspaper or other media their own First Amendment rights to operate a free press, without government coercion such requirements would also diminish the public's ability to distinguish historical truth from propaganda.

Like the editor of a private newspaper, the editors of all private and most public college newspapers have a First Amendment right to exercise editorial control over which advertisements appear in their newspaper. The only situation in which an editor of a state university newspaper would not have this right would be if the university administration controlled the content of the campus newspaper and set editorial policy. In such a case, the university would essentially function as an arm of the government, and prohibition of newspaper advertisements based on content would violate the First Amendment. There are few universities, however, where the administration exercises this type of control over the student paper.

At public elementary and secondary schools, the administration has the right to refuse to print Holocaust-denial advertisements in a student newspaper the U.S. Supreme Court ruled in a 1988 decision, Hazelwood School District v. Kuhlmeier, that "educators do not offend the First Amendment by exercising editorial control over. . . the content of student speech in school-sponsored expressive activities so long as their actions are reasonably related to legitimate pedagogical concern." Based on that decision, it is clear that public school officials have the same right as student editors to reject Holocaust-denial advertisements, since this propaganda encourages bias and prejudice, offends many individuals and has a negative educational value.

The one case directly involving the substance of Holocaust-denial propaganda in an American court was a 1985 lawsuit brought against the IHR by Mel Mermelstein, a Holocaust survivor living in Long Beach, California. In the early '80s, Mermelstein had responded to a cynical IHR publicity campaign which offered $50,000 to anyone who could prove that Jews had been gassed at Auschwitz by submitting evidence that members of his own family had been murdered at that concentration camp. When the IHR failed to comply with its promised terms, Mermelstein filed his suit. In July 1985, the lawsuit was settled in Mermelstein's favor. The settlement, approved by judge Robert Wenke of the Los Angeles Superior Court, called for the IHR to pay Mermelstein the $50,000 "reward," as well as an additional $40,000 for pain and suffering. Moreover, at a pre-trial hearing, the Court took judicial notice of the fact that gas chambers had been used to murder Jews at Auschwitz.

Several months later, Mermelstein won another victory against the Holocaust-denial movement. In January 1986, a Los Angeles Superior Court jury awarded Mermelstein $4.75 million in punitive damages and $500,000 in compensatory damages in a suit he had filed in 1981 against Ditlieb Felderer, a Swedish Holocaust denier whose publication, Jewish Information Bulletin (it is in fact none of these), had mocked the killing of Jews at Auschwitz and had attacked Mermelstein personally. Later that year, the IHR and Willis Carto sued Mermelstein, claiming he libeled them during a radio interview given in New York. In 1988, they voluntarily dropped the charges.

8. What have academic authorities said about Holocaust denial?

The History Department at Duke University, responding to a CODOH ad, unanimously adopted and published a statement noting: "That historians are constantly engaged in historical revision is certainly correct however, what historians do is very different from this advertisement. Historical revision of major events. . . is not concerned with the actuality of these events rather, it concerns their historical interpretation - their causes and consequences generally. There is no debate among historians about the actuality of the Holocaust. there can be no doubt that the Nazi state systematically put to death millions of Jews, Gypsies, political radicals and other people."

David Oshinsky and Michael Curtis of Rutgers University have written, "If one group advertises that the Holocaust never happened, another can buy space to insist that American Blacks were never enslaved. The stakes are high because college newspapers may soon be flooded with ads that present discredited assertions as if they were part of normal historical debate. If the Holocaust is not a fact, then nothing is a fact. "

Peter Hayes, Associate Professor of History and German at Northwestern University, responded to a Smith ad by stating, "[B]ear in mind that not a single one of the advances in our knowledge since 1945 has been contributed by the self-styled 'Revisionists' whom Smith represents. That is so because contributing to knowledge is decidedly not their purpose . . . . This ad is an assault on the intellectual integrity . of academicians, whom Smith and his ilk wish to browbeat. It is also a throwback to the worst sorts of conspiracy-mongering of anti-Semitic broadside. Is it plausible that so great and longstanding a conspiracy of repression could really have functioned? . That everybody with a Ph.D. active in the field - German, American, Canadian, British, Israeli, etc. - is in on it together. If one suspects it is, might it not be wise to do a bit of checking about Smith, his organization and his charges before running so implausible an ad?"

Perhaps most significantly, in December 1991, the governing council of the American Historical Association (AHA), the nation's largest and oldest professional organization for historians, unanimously approved a statement condemning the Holocaust-denial movement, stating, "No serious historian questions that the Holocaust took place." The council's action came in response to a petition circulated among members calling for an official statement against Holocaust-denial propaganda the petition had been signed by more than 300 members attending the organization's annual conference. Moreover, in 1994, the AHA reaffirmed its position in a press release which stated that "the Association will not provide a forum for views that are, at best, a form of academic fraud."

1. The Holocaust Did Not Occur Because There Is No Single "Master Plan" for Jewish Annihilation

There is no single Nazi document that expressly enumerates a "master plan" for the annihilation of European Jewry. Holocaust-denial propagandists misrepresent this fact as an exposure of the Holocaust "hoax" in doing so, they reveal a fundamentally misleading approach to the history of the era. That there was no single document does not mean there was no plan. The "Final Solution" the Nazis' comprehensive plan to murder all European Jews - was, as the Encyclopedia of the Holocaust observes, "the culmination of a long evolution of Nazi Jewish policy." 2 The destruction process was shaped gradually: it was borne of many thousands of directives. 3

The development and implementation of this process was overseen and directed by the highest tier of Nazi leadership, including Heinrich Himmler, Reinhard Heydrich, Adolf Eichmann, Hermann Goering and Adolf Hitler himself. For the previous two decades, Hitler had relentlessly pondered Jewish annihilation. 4 In a September 16, 1919, letter he wrote that while "the Jewish problem" demanded an "anti-Semitism of reason" - comprising systematic legal and political sanctions - "the final goal, however, must steadfastly remain the removal of the Jews altogether." 5

Throughout the 1920s, Hitler maintained that "the Jewish question" was the "pivotal question" for his Party and would be solved "with well-known German thoroughness to the final consequence." 6 With his assumption to power in 1933, Hitler's racial notions were implemented by measures that increasingly excluded Jews from German society.

On January 30, 1939, Hitler warned that if Jewish financiers and Bolsheviks initiated war, "The result will not be the Bolshevization of the earth, and thus the victory of Jewry, but the annihilation of the Jewish race in Europe." 7 On September 21, 1939, after the Germans invaded Poland, SD chief Heydrich ordered the Einsatzgruppen (mobile killing units operating in German-occupied territory) to forcibly concentrate Polish Jews into ghettos, alluding to an unspecified "final aim." 8

In the summer of 1941, with preparations underway for invading Russia, large-scale mass murder initiatives - already practiced domestically upon the mentally ill and deformed - were broadly enacted against Jews. Heydrich, acting on Hitler's orders, directed the Einsatzgruppen to implement the "special tasks" of annihilation in the Soviet Union of Jews and Soviet commissars. 9 On July 31, Heydrich received orders from Goering to prepare plans "for the implementation of the aspired final solution of the Jewish question" in all German-occupied areas. 10 Eichmann, while awaiting trial in Israel in 1960, related that Heydrich had told him in August 1941 that "the Führer has ordered the physical extermination of the Jews." 11 Rudolf Hoess, the Commandant of Auschwitz, wrote in 1946 that "In the summer of 1941. Himmler said to me, 'The Führer has ordered the Final Solution to the Jewish Question. I have chosen the Auschwitz camp for this purpose.'" 12

On January 20, 1942, Heydrich convened the Wannsee Conference to discuss and coordinate implementation of the Final Solution. Eichmann later testified at his trial:

Ten days after the conference, while delivering a speech at the Sports Palace in Berlin that was recorded by the Allied monitoring service, Hitler declared: "The result of this war will be the complete annihilation of the Jews. the hour will come when the most evil universal enemy of all time will be finished, at least for a thousand years." 14 On February 24, 1943, he stated: "This struggle will not end with the annihilation of Aryan mankind, but with the extermination of the Jewish people in Europe. 15

Approximately 6 million Jews were killed in the course of Hitler's Final Solution.

2. There Were No Gas Chambers Used for Mass Murder at Auschwitz and Other Camps

Death camp gas chambers were the primary means of execution used against the Jews during the Holocaust. The Nazis issued a directive implementing large-scale gas chambers in the fall of 1941 but, by then, procedures facilitating mass murder, including the utilization of smaller gas chambers, were already in practice. Before their use in death camps, gas chambers were central to Hitler's "eugenics" pro, gram. Between January 1940 and August 1941, 70,273 Germans - most of them physically handicapped or mentally ill - were gassed, 20-30 at a time, in hermetically shut chambers disguised as shower rooms. 16

Meanwhile, mass shooting of Jews had been extensively practiced on the heels of Germany's Eastern campaign. But these actions by murder squads had become an increasingly unwieldy process by October 1941. Three directors of the genocide Erhard Wetzel, head of the Racial-Policy Office: Alfred Rosenberg, consultant on Jewish affairs for the Occupied Eastern Territories, and Victor Brack, deputy director of the Chancellory, met at the time with Adolf Eichmann to discuss the use of gas chambers in the genocide program. 17 Thereafter, two technical advisors for the euthanasia gas chambers, Kriminalkommissar Christian Wirth and a Dr. Kallmeyer, were sent to the East to begin construction of mass gas chambers. 18 Physicians who had implemented the euthanasia program were also transferred.

Mobile gassing vans, using the exhaust fumes of diesel engines to kill passengers, were used to kill Jews at Chelmno and Treblinka - as well as other sites, not all of them concentration camps - starting in November 1941. 19 At least 320,000 Chelmno prisoners, most of them Jews, were killed by this method a total of 870,000 Jews were murdered at Treblinka using gas vans and diesel-powered gas chambers. 20

Gas chambers were installed and operated at Belzec, Lublin, Sobibor, Majdanek and Auschwitz-Birkenau from September 3, 1941, when the first experimental gassing took place at Auschwitz, until November 1944. 22 Working with chambers measuring an average 225 square feet, the Nazis forced to their deaths 700 to 800 men, women and children at a time. 22 Two-thirds of this program was completed in 1943-44, and at its height it accounted for as many as 20,000 victims per day. 23 Authorities have estimated that these gas chambers accounted for the deaths of approximately 2E to 3 million Jews.

Holocaust-denial attacks on this record of mass murder intensified following the end of the Cold War when it was reported that the memorial at Auschwitz was changed in 1991 to read that 1 million had died there, instead of 4 million as previously recorded. For Holocaust deniers, this change appeared to confirm arguments that historical estimates of Holocaust deaths had been deliberately exaggerated, and that scholars were beginning to "retreat" in the face of "revisionist" assertions. Thus, for example, Willis Carto wrote in the February 6, 1995, issue of The Spotlight, the weekly tabloid of his organization, Liberty Lobby, that "All 'experts' until 1991 claimed that 4 million Jews were killed at Auschwitz. This impossible figure was reduced in 1991. to 1.1 million. The facts about deaths at Auschwitz, however. are still wrong. The Germans kept detailed records of Auschwitz deaths. These show that no more than 120,000 persons of all religions and ethnicity died at Auschwitz during the war. "

In fact, Western scholars have never supported the figure of 4 million deaths at Auschwitz the basis of this Soviet estimate - an analysis of the capacity of crematoria at Auschwitz and Birkenau - has long been discredited. As early as 1952, Gerald Reitlinger, a British historian, had convincingly challenged this method of calculation. Using statistics compiled in registers for Himmler, he asserted that approximately 1 million people had died at Auschwitz Raul Hilberg in 1961, and Yehuda Bauer in 1989, confirmed Reitlinger's estimate of Auschwitz victims. Each of these scholars, nonetheless, has recognized that nearly 6 million Jews were killed overall during the Holocaust. 24 Polish authorities were therefore responding to long-accepted Western scholarship, further confirmed subsequently by documents released in post-Soviet Russia the cynical allegations of "Holocaust revisionism" played no part in their decision.

3. Holocaust Scholars Rely on the Testimony of Survivors Because There Is No Objective Documentation Proving the Nazi Genocide

Another frequent claim of Holocaust "revisionists" concerns what they describe as the lack of objective documentation proving the facts of the Holocaust, and the reliance by scholars on biased and poorly collected testimonies of survivors. However, the Germans themselves left no shortage of documentation and testimony to these events, and no serious scholar has relied solely on survivor testimony as the conclusive word on Holocaust history. Lucy Dawidowicz, in the preface to her authoritative work, The War Against the Jews 1933-1945, wrote, "The German documents captured by the Allied armies at the war's end have provided an incomparable historical record, which, with regard to volume and accessibility, has been unique in the annals of scholarship. The National Archives and the American Historical Association jointly have published 67 volumes of Guides to German Records Microfilmed at Alexandria, VA. For my work I have limited myself mainly to published German documents." 26 The author then proceeds to list 303 published sources - excluding periodicals -documenting the conclusions of her research. Among these sources are the writings of recognizable Nazi policy makers such as Adolf Hitler, Heinrich Himmler, Rudolf Hoess and Alfred Rosenberg.

Similarly, Raul Hilberg in his three-volume edition of Penghancuran Orang Yahudi Eropa, wrote, "Between 1933 and 1945 the public offices and corporate entities of Nazi Germany generated a large volume of correspondence. Some of these documents were destroyed in Allied bombings, and many more were systematically burned in the course of retreats or in anticipation of surrender. Nevertheless, the accumulated paper work of the German bureaucracy was vast enough to survive in significant quantities, and even sensitive folders remained." 26

It is thus largely from these primary sources that the history of the Holocaust has been compiled. A new factor in this process is the sudden availability of countless records from the former Soviet Union, many of which had been overlooked or suppressed since their capture at war's end by the Red Army. Needless to say, the modification of specific details in this history is certain to continue for a number of years to come, considering the vastness and complexity of the events which comprise the Holocaust. However, it is equally certain that these modifications will only confirm the Holocaust's enormity, rather than - as the "revisionists" would -call it into question.

4. There Was No Net Loss of Jewish Lives Between 1941 and 1945

Another frequent "revisionist" assertion calls into question the generally accepted estimates of Jewish victims of the Holocaust. In attempting to portray the deaths of millions of Jews as an exaggeration or a fabrication, Holocaust deniers wildly manipulate reference works, almanac statistics, geopolitical data, bedrock historical facts and other sources of information and reportage.

For example, "revisionists" commonly cite various almanac or atlas figures - typically compiled before comprehensive accounts on the Holocaust were available - that appear to indicate that the worldwide Jewish population before and after World War II remained essentially stable, thereby "proving" that 6 million Jews could not have died during this period.

The widely cited "6 million" figure is derived from the initial 1945 Nuremberg trial estimate of 5.7 million deaths subsequent censuses, statistical analyses, and other demographic studies of European Jewry have consistently demonstrated the essential accuracy of this first tally. 27 After nearly 50 years of study, historians agree that approximately 6 million Jews perished during the course of the Nazi genocide. 28

Di dalam The War Against the Jews, Lucy Dawidowicz offers a country-by-country accounting of Jewish deaths. 29

5. The Nuremberg Trials Were a "Farce of Justice" Staged for the Benefit of the Jews

Yet another centerpiece of "revisionist" propaganda attacks the objectivity and legal validity of the postwar Nuremberg Trials, where much information about the Holocaust first became public, and where the general history of the genocide was first established.

The actual process of bringing Nazi war criminals to justice was a lengthy and complicated effort involving the differing legal traditions and political agendas of the United States, England, France and the Soviet Union. As the historical record shows, the allied victors, if anything, erred on the side of leniency toward the accused Nazis.

Discussions concerning allied treatment of war criminals had begun as early as October 1943. 30 In the summer months following Germany's surrender in 1945, British, American and Soviet representatives met in London to create the charter for an international military tribunal to prosecute "major criminals" whose offenses extended over the entire Reich, and who therefore could be punished by joint decision of the Governments of the Allies. 31

By early autumn, the Allies had resolved their debates over whom to prosecute and how to define the crimes committed during the Holocaust the first trials began thereafter in Nuremberg, before an international military tribunal. The chief defendant was Hermann Goering, but the prosecution also selected 20 other leading officials from the Nazi party, German government ministries, central bureaucracy, armament and labor specialists, the military and territorial chiefs. 32

These trials did not result in either "rubber stamp" guilty verdicts or identical sentences. In fact, of the 21 defendants, three were set free one received a 10-year sentence one a 15-year sentence two, 20-year sentences three, life sentences, and 11 received the death penalty. 33

The defendants, moreover, had access to 206 attorneys, 136 of whom had been Nazi party members. 34 Furthermore, as Raul Hilberg stated, "The judges in Nuremberg were established American lawyers. They had not come to exonerate or convict. They were impressed with their task, and they approached it with much experience in the law and little anticipation of the facts. 35

A second round of trials resulted in 25 death sentences, 20 life sentences, 97 sentences of 25 years or less, and 3 5 not-guilty verdicts. 36 By 1951, following the recommendations of an American-run clemency board, 77 of the 142 convicted criminals had been released from prison. 37

Sumber: Holocaust Denial, (NY: ADL, 1997). Copyright Anti-Defamation League (ADL). Seluruh hak cipta. Reprinted with permission.

1 For more information about the National Alliance, see William L. Pierce: Novelist of Hate, ADL Research Report, 1995.
2 Israel Gutman (Editor in Chief), Encyclopedia of the Holocaust, Volume 2, New York, 1990, p. 788.
3 Raul Hilberg, Penghancuran Orang Yahudi Eropa (Student Edition), New York, 1985, p. 263.
4 See Lucy Dawidowicz, The War Against the Jews, 1933-1945, New York, 1975, pp. 150,166.
5 Gutman, Volume 2, p. 489.
6 Ibid., p. 489.
7 Gutman, Volume 2, p. 490.
8 Bencana, Jerusalem: Keter Books, 1974, p. 104.
9 Gutman, Volume 2, p. 657.
10 Ibid., p. 492.
11 Ronnie Duggar, The Texas Observer, Austin, 1992, p. 48.
12 Gutman, Volume 2, pp. 641-642.
13 Ibid., Volume 2, p. 657.
14 Duggar, p. 48.
15 Bencana, pp. 105-106.
16 Gutman, Volume 2, p. 453
17 Martin Gilbert, The Holocaust, New York, 1985, p. 219.
18 Raul Hilberg, The Destruction of the European Jews, Volume 3, New York, 1985, pp. 873-876.
19 Gutman, Volume 2, pp. 541-544.
20 Gutman, Volume 2, p. 542 Volume 4, pp. 1483, 1486.
21 Gutman, Volume 1, pp. 113, 116.
22 Bencana, P. 86.
23 Ibid., p. 87.
24 Reitlinger, who conducted his research before Hilberg and other scholars, arrives at a more conservative figure of approximately 4.5 murder victims he nonetheless estimates that one-third of the internees at concentration camps died as a result of starvation, overwork, disease, and other consequences of their captivity. Although his murder count is somewhat lower than that of later scholars, his overall death count remains consistent with subsequent research.
25 Dawidowicz, p. 437.
26 Hilberg, Vol. 3, hal. 1223.
27 Dawidowicz, p. 402.
28 Peter Hayes, Associate Professor of German History at Northwestern University, states, "after years of studying this matter, I know of tidak authority who puts the number of Jews killed [emphasis in original] by the Nazis at less than 5.1 or more than 5.9 million men, women and children."
29 Dawidowicz, p. 403.
30 Hilberg, Vol. 3, hal. 1060.
31 Hilberg, Vol. 3, hal. 1061.
32 Hilberg, Vol. 3, hal. 1066.
33 Hilberg, Vol. 3, hal. 1070.
34 Hilberg, Vol. 3, hal. 1075.
35 Hilberg, Vol. 3, hal. 1076
36 Hilberg, Vol. 3, hal. 1077-1078.
37 Hilberg, Vol. 3, hal. 1079.

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The “Final Solution”: Göring Commission to Heydrich

To: the Chief of the Security Police and the SD
SS Major General Heydrich, Berlin:

As a supplement to the task which was entrusted to you in the decree dated January 24, 1939, to solve the Jewish question by emigration and evacuation in the most favorable way possible, given present conditions, I herewith commission you to carry out all necessary preparations with regard to organizational, substantive, and financial viewpoints for a total solution of the Jewish question in the German sphere of influence in Europe.

Insofar as other competencies of other central organizations are affected, these are to be involved.

I further commission you to submit to me promptly an overall plan showing the preliminary organizational, substantive, and financial measures for the execution of the intended final solution of the Jewish question.

Sumber: Dawidowicz, Lucy S. A Holocaust Reader. West Orange: Behrman. 1976, pp. 72-73 and Electric Zen: An Einsatzgruppen Electronic Repository.

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