The Holocaust Essay

Published: 2020-04-22 08:24:05
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The term holocaust was coined in a general context, to describe  the brutal killing of  European jews during the second Woerld War, this was part of the National Socialist devised and employed extensive campaign to intentionally abolish jewish presence in Germany at the time.  Conversely, numerous scholars and historians only apply the term to the barbaric treatment of the jews, not to all the recipients of the Nazi Violence.  Several theories have been applied as to how and why the Holocaust happened.  The main objective is to answer two major queries about the Holocaust.  The primary question wishes to findout if there was a master plan behind Hitlers execution of the Holocaust.  The other question is about the initiative of the Holocaust and to whom it is credited.  Two good ways to explore the roots of such brutality and the causes as well as the inentions of the Holocaust are in the intentionalist and the structulist standpoints.

Theoratically, the intentionalist view is concentrated on the effects of what a particular act wishes to accomplish.  The Intentionalist view simply interprets that Hitler already expressed hatred of Jews and has been vocal of his desire to push the Jews to the brink of extinction even before his rise to power took place.[1]  [In support of the intentionalist aspect, Lucy Dawidocz suggests that Hitlers long kept intentions against the jews were evident in the  crimes of genocide and discrimination that were executed in installments.  Dawidowicz also implies that the initiative originated from Hitler himself.[2]  ]

[The legislation of the Nuremberg Laws of 1935 formalized the casual measures against Jews.  Hitler emphasized on the deprivation of civil rights of the jews just to show the consistency in  Nazi platform.[3] ] .  The first law forbade non-Aryans (Jews) to have marital engagements in order to preserve German purity in blood.  Second was the segregation of pure Germans from cross-bred citizens into nationals and Reich Citizens.  The legislation was symbolic due to the fact that Hitler and the German Parliament were already acting independently via the dictatorial Enabling Act.  .

Practically, Hitler forced Jews to work for the industry of the German War only with primitive tools and barely adequate provisions up to the pinnacle of humane physical limit.  [According to Dawidowiczs book, The war Against the Jews, the provisions of the German frontline in the USSR were disrupted so that the jews may be transported to the extermination camps.[4]  ] [By these elements, it was evident that Anti-jewish advocacies reached critical levels via Hitlers personal emotions and his ressurection of previous perspectives by a former German King and re-introducing them in the policies of Nazi Germany. .[5]  ]

In another intentionalist view,  Hitlers intentions erupted as a result of his rise to power and the long wait for the aforementioned intentions to become a reality.  It was obviously felt through the German governments treatment of slaves as expendable property and of little or no worth in the operation of war machines, hence, they were disposed after doing their part.[6]  Slave driving never placed Hitler in the pedestal of contentment.  Hitler brought out more from his arsenal in terms of methodology as the Hitler regime, after the conquest of Poland in eastern Europe, deployed an army whose sole purpose is to slay jews and the political adversaries of the Nazis.  Just a sample of how far the German Government, and Hitler for that matter, are willing to go just to ensure a jewish free Germany, and probably the world.

[Dawidiowcz notes that Hatred and anti-semitism have never been a blatant aftermath of a system of beliefs by a group, let alone a person.  Hitlers view of the jews was the the most probable origin of  expounding vile belief in the justification of viscious murders, an instance never encountered in history before. ]  Moreover, Hitlers hatred of the Jews were the core of his beliefs and is credited to be the sculptor of his general outlook and political intentions.  It is in this contexts that the heart of the National Socialist constitution was grounded.

In the structulist angle, there were several factors that contributed to the Holocaust.  [Primarily, the components of the German Government were in direct inolvement as far as the operations on the mass killing were concerned, classifying Germany as a Genocidal State.[7]]  Legislative acts regarding persecution of jews were already drafted and approved long before Hitler acquired power.  Hence, the Holocaust was also influenced by several factors.

In the conference of ministers, Nazi representative, Adolf Wagner,  contended that economic instability will continue until the government has come up with a firm policy against the jews.  [The minister of Economics, Dr. Hjalmar Schacht, countered the theory claiming such a theory makes no sense and that jews have remarkable entrepreneurial skills.  In the same regard, but Schacht did not condemn the anit-jewish policy and even approved of the passing of the legislation just to put order to an intensifying situation.[8]]  [Structulistically, it was quite obvious that the Holocaust wass not only rooted to the personal hatred of Adolf Hitler, but on the economic turmoil as well, [9]]

A closer look at the circumstance may support the theory that the ruthless Nazi treatment of jews was also the cause of the declining economy integrated with  international relations and reactions to and from Germany.  The hierarchy of officials from Hitlers government were involved in the accomplishment of the Holocaust together with the local populace, police, army and national railways.  These constituents have a broader view and knowledge of the totality of what was really happening across the nation since the millions of lives processed by Nazis required manpower since the accomplishment of Hitlers advocacy included operations from several nearby regions and huge numbers of paperwork.[10]

The structulist point of view was backboned by the doctoral dissertation which eventually became a book, Hitlers Willing Executioners.  Author and Harvard Affiliate for the center of European Studies Daniel Goldhagen argues that the participation and involvement of ordinary non-jewish Germans were also another perspective in the events of the Holocaust with reference to the responsibility and completion, Goldhagen (1996) contested that the general public of Germany had knowledge and approval of the execution of the Holocaust and that the majority would have personally done the act if required or had the oppurtunity to do so.[11] ] [Goldhagen also wrote that the antisemitist tendencies of the Germans were unique as it had eliminationist implications.[12]  ]

Another argument by structulists was the low ratio of Germans against the mass murder of Jews and other political opponents of the government at the time.  In spite of the contradictions to the theory, Goldhagen stayed firm with his central claims.  In his own description, he claimed that the intent of his witten work was to address three debatable truths.  [The German perpetrators of the Holocaust treated Jews in all the brutal and lethal ways that they did because, by and large, they believed that what they were doing was right and necessary. Second, that there was long existing, virulent antisemitism in German society that led to the desire on the part of the vast majority of Germans to eliminate Jews somehow from German society. Third, that any explanation of the Holocaust must address and specify the causal relationship between antisemitism in Germany and the persecution and extermination of the Jews which so many ordinary Germans contributed to and supported.[13] ]

Structulists believe that Hitler only scrutinized and exploited something that was already innate of a German.  [A reflection on the central ideas of Goldhagens book clearly stated that the Germans did not massacre the jewish tribes due to prior claims of social and psychological pressure, nor was it driven by solid fidelity to Hitler, it was applied with the hereditary hatred that were prepared years before the holocaust even became a reality in the German social landscape.[14]]  Moreover, jewish hatred, was already a culture of Germans and Hitler only implied it as a heroic act to persuade the people, that abruptly became the reason behind less resistance from recruited willing executioners to do Hitlers job for him.

[The structulist application of Goldhagens idea denotes the persecution and extermination of the jews in Germany and Europe was not the first first of its kind.  Throughout centuries various movements have been made towards the oppression of the jews, however, in the case of the Holocaust, the brutality was brought about by several factors which include social and cultural injection of hatred towards a particular race.  The methods used were different in the sense that the government amplified an emotion that was already present in the first place, years of implanting emotion was the recipe of total annihilation of the jews.[15] ]


 The Holocaust was one of the bloodiest racial discriminations ever experienced in history.  The question of Hitlers involvement is of vital relevance since his tyranny utilized full extent of power to solve the Jewish problem.  However, contrasting views such as Structulists deem of numerous factors that led to the Holocaust and its flawless accomplishment against the intentionalists conviction in reference to Hitlers personal intentions and sentiments may cause confusion as to who really was responsiblefor it.  The fact of the matter is that no one has the right to willingly claim the life of a person and/or race grounding from personal or innate rationality.


[1]    L. Dawidowicz. The War Against the Jews.  Bantam. New York.  1986

[2]    Ibid.

[3]    L. Dawidowicz. The War Against the Jews.  Bantam. New York.  1986

[4]    Ibid. 4

[5]    Ibid.

[6]    Ibid.

[7]    J. Boas, German-Jewish Internal Politics under Hitler 1933-1938. 1984. p. 3

[8]    J. Boas, German-Jewish Internal Politics under Hitler 1933-1938. 1984. p. 3

[9]    Ibid. 4

[10]  D. Goldhagen. Hitlers Willing Executioners.  Random House Inc. New York. 1996 p. 40

[11]  D. Goldhagen. Hitlers Willing Executioners.  Random House Inc. New York. 1996 p. 40

[12]  Ibid.

[13]  Ibid.

[14]  D. Goldhagen. Hitlers Willing Executioners.  Random House Inc. New York. 1996

[15]  Ibid.

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