Class 9 History
The Nazi ideology did not believe in equality among people but only in a racial hierarchy. According to this, the Nordic German Aryans were at the top and the Jews were at the bottom. All other colored people were placed in between.
In your biology class, you may have read about theories by Darwin and Spencer. Darwin proposed the theory of Natural Selection to explain organic evolution, while Spencer added the concept of Survival of the Fittest. These theories helped in understanding the process by which complex organisms evolved from simple organisms. Hitler interpreted the ideas of Darwin and Spencer to suit his own views. While Darwin and Spencer never talked about human intervention, Hitler wanted human intervention to ensure the elimination of other races. According to him, such races were not fit for survival and should be eliminated to make place for the purest race, the Nordic German Aryans.
Hitler’s ideology was also related to the geopolitical concept of Lebensraum, or living space. He believed in acquiring new territories to spread the race of the Nordic German Aryans.
The Nazis quickly began to implement their dream of creating an exclusive racial community of pure Germans. They did this by physically eliminating all those who were seen as ‘undesirable’ in the extended empire. The pure and healthy Nordic Aryans were seen as the only ‘desirable’ race. Many Germans who were considered ‘undesirable’ were killed under the Euthanasia Programme. Even the mentally or physically unfit were killed under this programme.
The Jews, the Russians and the Poles, all of them were widely persecuted. After the German occupation of Poland and parts of Russia, the captured civilians were forced to work as slave labour. Most of them died because of hard work and starvation.
There had been a long tradition of Christian hostility towards the Jews. They had been stereotyped as killers of Christ and usurpers. Until medieval times, the Jews were barred from owning land. Trade and money-lending was their only means for survival. Periodic organized violence and expulsion from land were often used for persecuting the Jews.
The Nazis wanted the complete elimination of the Jews. From 1933 to 1938, the Jews were compelled to leave the country through different means of terror and segregation. In the next phase (1939-1945), there was an aim of concentrating them in certain areas and eventually killing them in gas chambers.
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