In this retelling of the past, one key date--May 24, was singled out. On that date, several hundred people protested the announced expulsion of the Jews from Sofia.
The authorities proceeded with an estimated arrests, and Jews were interned in the Somovit concentration camp. After failing to obtain an audience with the King, the Metropolite spoke from his pulpit in Nevski Cathedral about the persecution of the Jews. A less biased account of these events that records the number of participants--estimates ranged from several hundred to several thousand participants, depending on the source --remains to be written.
Corroboration of the presence of non-Jews among the Jewish protesters and details concerning the reactions of Jewish communists and Zionists to the protests would also deepen understanding of this critical set of events. Widespread opposition to anti-Jewish policies is among the most well known aspects of wartime Bulgarian history. For several decades after the war, emphasis on overt resistance to deportations of Bulgarian Jews caused numerous historians underestimate or neglect the number of Bulgarians who were actually implicated in creating and enforcing anti-Jewish policies.
The resulting culture of silence muzzled reactions to other anti-Jewish programs, particularly the Aryanization of Jewish property and assets. Indeed, one of the blind spots of Bulgarian, Macedonian, and Greek historiography of the period concerns the evolution of relations between Jews and non-Jews as the war progressed. A line has often been drawn in Bulgaria between the pro-Fascist government and affiliated organizations including Ratnici , the Legionnaires, the mass youth organization Brannik , which is occasionally compared to the Hitler Youth , and other elements of Bulgarian society said to have massively opposed anti-Jewish policies, either through non-public gestures of solidarity towards Jewish neighbors or in public protests.
References to the occupation in Macedonia and Greece, and the lack of local power and of records, and the speed of the deportations have made it difficult to develop critical accounts of the fluctuating levels of solidarity shown by local Greek inhabitants towards their Jewish neighbors. Recent studies have begun to tarnish the rosy image of unswerving support for Jewish victims of persecution in Macedonia among members of the Partisan movement, for example. Close examination of the Aryanization of Jewish properties in Bulgaria and the plundering of Jewish assets and property following deportations in occupied territory reveals a range of predatory practices that included pilfering, theft, abusively low purchase prices, and efforts by some individuals to obtain favors from delegates for Jewish Affairs and members of the Commissariat.
Obviously, the outcome of these strategies was that Bulgarian officials and neighbors appropriated the worldly possessions and property that had been confiscated from local Jews. The challenges faced by historians attempting to write balanced accounts of these events include keeping the exceptional nature of the Bulgarian public outcry against anti-Jewish legislation in the fall of firmly in view. It also requires consideration of later opposition to the attempted deportation of the Bulgarian Jews in March , and the existence of situations in which individuals — sometimes the same individuals — simultaneously took advantage of opportunities for enriching themselves made possible by official anti-Semitic policies.
Several particularly significant episodes are also worth pausing to consider.
The Law for the Defense of the Nation was referred to earlier in this article, but not a full account of the protests that contributed to the postponement of roundups of Bulgarian Jews in March The facts surrounding this exceptional series of events were reported in a seminal book by the American historian Frederic Chary. Although the actual preparations for deportations were shrouded in secrecy, some information did circulate prior to the arrests. In early March in Kjustendil, another Bulgarian town near the Macedonian border, an agent for the Commissariat for Jewish Affairs, a corrupt local doctor, and the regional prefect broke the silence surrounding the preparation of the arrests of Bulgarian Jews.
Requests for containers and food from the Delegate for Jewish Affairs in Kjustendil to Jewish community leaders confirmed suspicions of the arrests, as did the fact that thirty-five railcars were parked at the railway station in nearby Radomir. After initially denying the imminence of the roundups, the Minister at last agreed to place a telephone call suspending the arrests.
To this day, the reasons for his change of heart have never been fully accounted for. He only submitted the petition to pro-government Parliamentary representatives, hoping to persuade the Prime minister, Bodgan Filov, that he risked exposing himself to public opprobrium after forty-two Parliament members signed the letter one member later withdrew his support. First, divergent accounts of what transpired reflect the political affiliations of various authors, even to the present day. The second historiographical controversy involves how to interpret the principles underlying Bulgarian opposition to anti-Jewish policies.
However, it is implausible to attempt to contradict this essentialization of collective representations by deploying arguments that are solely based on the exceptional moral rectitude of particular individuals. What is needed is systematic exploration of the social dynamics that enabled specific beliefs to take shape and lead some people — beyond questions of personal ethics — to publicly oppose anti-Jewish policies and to take action. Controversies surrounding Bulgarian wartime policies towards the Jews were somewhat muted during the Cold War, but they have been the subjects of increasingly bitter debate since the fall of communism.
The first variable that might explain this renewed rancor is the annexation of the Holocaust to political and identity-based debates that are only tangentially related with these events. The most important of these debates include the redefinition of national identities in post-Yugoslav Macedonia, the shaping of political cleavages in post communist Bulgaria and, somewhat less enthusiastically, the re-negotiation of the intricate relationships between the histories of the civil war and World War Two in Greece.
As these competing voices attempt to institutionalize rival interpretations of the past, they should be considered within the context the growing transnationalization of Holocaust narratives. Bulgarian Jews settled in the United States and Israel, as well as non-Jewish Balkan diasporas, have actively contributed to these conflicting memorial initiatives. Relatedly, the salience of memorial issues surrounding Bulgarian wartime policies cannot be considered separately from more recent changes that have affected European and international memorial policies and have assigned a central place in European memory to the Holocaust.
Until Yugoslavia imploded in , the Holocaust in Macedonia was poorly represented in Yugoslavian historiography, and the attention of historians was primarily focused on massacres that took place in Croatia, Serbia, and Bosnia-Herzegovina. In the s and s, historical disputes between Bulgarians and Macedonians intensified, expanding to include the ethnic background of the Macedonian people and language. The creation of an independent Macedonia in initially had only a minor influence on the importance of the Holocaust in the national historical narrative.
The extermination of the Jews of Macedonia became far more visible after a law was adopted that denationalized property that had belonged to the Jewish community and created a Holocaust Fund for Macedonian Jews. Plans for a Holocaust Memorial Center were laid five years later, and the site was finally inaugurated in March The museum initiative is part of a series of similar initiatives around the world that are designed to encourage Holocaust remembrance.
The subject of the Holocaust first began to generate interest among Bulgarian politicians in the late s. Meanwhile, politicians uniformly stigmatized political uses of the past in Macedonia. Descendants of Jews from Bulgaria and Macedonia who emigrated to Israel or the United States have become full participants in these public debates. Two episodes illustrating their role deserve mention. After a series of hearings with survivors, historians, and memorial institutions, in July , Judge Bejski proposed a single monument to commemorate both the victims of extermination and those involved in the rescue of Bulgarian Jews.
The Bulgarian occupation and deportation are told through a love-starred plot involving a young Jewish woman and a Macedonian football player. Even before the film was released, generous funding from the Macedonian state and a visit to the filming site by Nikola Gruevski, the Macedonian Prime Minister, were interpreted in Bulgarian governing circles as evidence that the Macedonian government had commissioned the film.
Once again, transnational dynamics played a key role in animating a public controversy. This time however, the key factor was the use of EU member-state status by Bulgarian politicians as a source of leverage over their Macedonian neighbor which was a candidate for EU membership at the time. The EU provided Bulgarian officials with a broader theater for the debate, as well as the potential to influence the outcome.
The Holocaust had historically played a less tendentious role in Bulgarian-Greek relations. A new body of scholarship has recently emerged under the impulse initially of foreign historians, followed by local scholars. In tandem with these developments in historiography, it is possible that the Bulgarian government may come under increased internal and international pressure to acknowledge the role of the state in wartime roundups and deportations from territories under Bulgarian control. These changes will enable a better understanding to emerge of the truly exceptional nature of the social protests against Bulgarian anti-Jewish policies in and Nadja Danova i Roumen Avramov, Ed.
Bulgarian archival documents], Sofia: Obedineni izdateli, , 2 vol. Documentary exhibit], Sofia: CDA, Gutenberg, Sofia. David Koen Ed. Sbornik ot dokumenti [Survival.
Vladimir Paunovski i Josif Iliel Eds. Nikolaj Poppetrov Ed. Albena Taneva i Vanja Gezenko Eds. Iztok-Zapad, Jak Eskenazi i Alfred Krispin Eds. Anotirana bibliografija [The Jews in Bulgarian Lands. A Collection of Studies and Memories.
Albert Romano et al. Studii [The Jews in Bulgaria Studies], Sofia: Iz. Fakel-Leonidovi, Minna Rozen Ed. Kliment Ohridski, William I. Brustein and Ryan D. Issues in Contemporarary Jewish History, 3, July Alfred Krispin Ed. Lea Cohen, You Believe. Hagen Fleischer, Stemma ke svastika. Sofija Grandakovska Ed. Zdenko Levental Ed. Dalkavoukis, El. Paschalousi, Il.
Savage pacification measures reduced Partisan activity appreciably. The pact contains a secret protocol on the disposition of Poland , which will be divided between the two larger nations. Finally, there was a deep sense of insecurity due to Hungarian and Bulgarian revisionist demands and, in the case of Romania, also of Soviet refusal to recognize the Romanian possession of Bessarabia. German authorities in Poland officially declare the existence of the Warsaw Ghetto. Unfortunately this warning went unheeded by the Yugoslav nation. Bulgaria incorporated parts of Yugoslavia. President Roosevelt asked arming of American-flag ships engaged in foreign commerce.
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You cannot overwrite this file. In Belorussia , a guerrilla collaborationist organization, Belaruskaya Narodnaya Partizanka Belorussian National Guerrillas , is established. Auschwitz is the death camp that is to carry out the greater part of the Jewish extermination. Mass gassings, not shootings, are determined to be the most effective means to exterminate the large numbers of Jews. Mass shootings of Jews in begin in Ponary Forest, the killing grounds near Vilna.
More than 62, Jews are murdered in western Russia. By , 70, to , perish there. British codebreakers monitoring radio traffic coming from German troops in the Soviet Union become aware of Nazi massacres of Soviet Jews. More than Jews are slaughtered at Zhitomir, Ukraine. Weintraub is immediately shot. In the Bialystok region of Poland, Nazis murder members of the Jewish intelligentsia.
German killing squads begin to murder Jews remaining in Kishinev, Romania. The Hungarian government undertakes a mass roundup of almost 18, Jewish refugees for deportation to Kamenets-Podolski, Ukraine. Twenty-two-year-old Jew Haya Dzienciolski finds a pistol, leaves Novogrudok, Ukraine , and helps to organize a group of young partisans in nearby forests. One hundred Jews are murdered at Lyakhovichi, Belorussia.
Hundreds of Jews are killed at Plunge, Lithuania. After Germans and Ukrainians spread a rumor that Jews had contributed to the execution of Ukrainian political prisoners, rioting erupts in Lvov , Ukraine. Hundreds of Jews are exterminated by the Nachtigall battalion, a Ukrainian militia directed by the Gestapo. In the Ukrainian town of Koritz, Nazi troops murder Jews and prepare three burial pits, one each for men, women, and children. Members of the Einsatzgruppen , the Wehrmacht, and Esalon Special, a Romanian unit, kill more than , Jews in Bessarabia, a region of eastern Romania.
German cavalry unit on patrol in Lubieszow, Volhynia, Ukraine , murders Jewish resisters. One hundred Jews are murdered at Bialystok , Poland. In the Ukraine , Jews are killed at Zloczow and hundreds die at Drohobycz. Soviet leader Joseph Stalin orders the establishment of partisan units to harass German troops in occupied Soviet territory.
Fifty-four Jews are killed at Vilna , Lithuania. Germans order Lithuanian militiamen to murder Jewish men and 47 Jewish women at the Seventh Fort. Five thousand Jews are killed in Ternopol, Ukraine. Ninety-three Jews are shot at Vilna , Lithuania , by an Einsatzkommando unit. Jews in Lvov , Ukraine , are murdered in the streets by antisemitic locals.
In the Ukraine , Jews are murdered at Chernovtsy; are killed at Skalat. Two thousand Jews are murdered at Khotin, Ukraine. Thirty-two Jews are killed in Mariampole, Lithuania. Jews in the Baltic states are forced to wear a distinguishing Jewish badge. Hundreds of Jews are killed at Noua Sulita, Romania.
Executions of Jews begin at Ponary, Lithuania. All Jewish residents of the Polish town of Jedwabne are accosted by their Polish neighbors, and by peasants from outlying areas, and are marched to the central market. In a day-long ordeal, the Jews are tortured and subsequently herded into a barn, which is set ablaze with kerosene. The massacre is not carried out by the Germans, who maintain only a token presence in Jedwabne on this day. Smolensk captured. Becomes the headquarters of the German Army Group Center.
Twelve hundred Jews are murdered at Slonim, Belorussia. Thousands of Jews are murdered at Kishinev, Romania. Minsk ghetto established in German-occupied Soviet territories, and by July 25, all Jews in the area were concentrated in the ghetto. Forty-five Jews in Minsk , Belorussia , are forced to dig pits, then are roped together and tossed into the pits.
Belorussians are ordered to bury Jews alive. When they refuse, Jewish and non-Jewish Belorussians alike are murdered by Einsatzkommandos. About Jews are killed in a pogrom at Kovno , Lithuania. Local Ukrainians at Lvov seize thousands of Jewish men and women and beat to death at least The killings are retribution for the murder of a Ukrainian antisemitic leader, Simon Petliura, by Shalom Schwarzbard, a Jew. Germans take Jews from Belgrade, Yugoslavia, to a camp at Tasmajdan, where every tenth captive is shot.
Local police and militiamen, acting with the acquiescence of SS troops at the prison at Drogobych, Ukraine, use guns, clubs, and fists to slaughter hundreds of Jews. The streets are choked with badly injured fleeing Jews and mangled corpses. German occupation troops in and around Belgrade, Yugoslavia, execute Communists and Jews for resistance. The killers are German Einsatzgruppen, Romanian troops and militia, Ukrainian peasants, and Lithuanian civilians. In Belgium, a collaborationist military organization, Legion Wallonie Wallonian Legion , is established.
German troops in Slobodka, Ukraine, fill the local synagogue with dead cats and force Jews to tear up the Torah scrolls and scatter the pieces atop the dead animals. The Nazi troops then set fire to the building. Father Bernhard Lichtenberg, dean of St.
He is subsequently denounced to the Gestapo and arrested. Unpatriotic because their films advocate involvement in the European war. Other congressmen express antisemitism. Many Americans agree with these sentiments. Many Americans also believe that should the United States go to war, it must be against the Soviet Union, not against Germany. Shmuel Verble, chairman of the Jewish Council in the Ukrainian village of Kamien Koszyrski, volunteers for death after discovering an execution list with the names of 80 ghetto residents. Twelve hundred Jews are arrested by the local Einsatzgruppen at Chernovtsy, Romania; are executed by German and Romanian police.
All residents of the Jewish community of Lesko, Poland, are transported to Zaslaw, Poland, and executed.
Each is allotted three square feet of living space. Heinrich Lohse, Reich commissioner for Eastern Territories of the Ostland Eastern Europe region, decrees that Jews must wear two yellow badges, one on the chest and one on the back; that Jews cannot own automobiles or radios; and that their presence in public places will be severely proscribed. Einsatzkommando 8 as well as local collaborators in Mogilev, Belorussia, kill more than Jews. About Jews are sent from Paris to Drancy, a transit camp in France.
These are the first of 70, Jews who will be deported to Drancy and then to extermination camps, primarily Auschwitz-Birkenau. In order not to reveal that British Intelligence has cracked the German radio code, Churchill makes no specific mention of the plight of Jews in the Soviet Union or elsewhere in Occupied Europe. Eighty-six-year-old Dr. Jacob Wigodsky, longtime leader of the Jews of Vilna, Lithuania, is arrested and imprisoned. He will be executed a week later at Ponary, Lithuania. German military and civilian authorities meet at Vinnitsa, Ukraine, to discuss the fate of about 20, Hungarian Jews impressed into forced labor and interned at Kamenets-Podolski, Ukraine.
General Friedrich Jeckeln announces that all 20, will be liquidated by September 1. In Yugoslavia, Jewish residents of Belgrade are transported to Topovske Supe, where they are murdered. Nearly 25, Hungarian-Jewish forced laborers are shot to death in bomb craters near Kamenets-Podolski, Ukraine. The butcher and the other Jews are immediately shot.
More than Jewish men, women, and children are taken from Vilna, Lithuania, to nearby Ponary, where they are shot as retribution for the partisan ambush of a German patrol. Other exhibits portray the Jew as a repulsive monster destroying France. In the first few days, more than , Parisians visit the exhibit. Romanians and Germans force nearly , Jews into death marches to internment camps in Bessarabia, Ukraine. Many die of beatings, random shootings, fatigue, hunger, thirst, exposure, and disease.
All Jews age six and older in Slovakia, Bohemia, and Moravia are ordered to wear Yellow Stars, effective September 19, and to suspend all business activity. The program will continue unofficially, however. First gassing tests in Auschwitz using Zyklon-B. The victims were Soviet prisoners of war and non-Jewish polish inmates. Another group blows up a large store of German arms. The Vilna Ghetto is created with a population of 40, Jews. German and Lithuanian units kill tens of thousands of Jews in the nearby Ponary woods. Suspicious that the Allies may be decoding its radio messages, Berlin orders German commanders in the Soviet Union to send future reports of Nazi executions of Jews and other Soviet civilians by courier instead of radio.
Their greatest danger to this country lies in their large ownership and influence in our motion pictures, our press, our radio, and our government. All Jews over the age of six in Germany have to wear a yellow Star of David in public at all times. All 24, Jews of Uman, Ukraine, are assembled at the town's airport and murdered by German troops. Several thousand Jews, mostly women and children from Kovno, Lithuania, are executed at the local synagogue after being held there for three days. Policemen in Kiev, Ukraine, adopt armbands identifying the wearer as a member of the Nazi-sponsored Organization of Ukrainian Nationalists.
Nearly Jews escape from Ejszyszki, Lithuania, after being alerted to an impending Nazi sweep. Soviet troops in Kiev, Ukraine, booby-trap two hotels, the post office, a radio station, and other major buildings, which are exploded via wireless radio after German troops have settled in. About Germans are killed. The Germans immediately plot a reprisal. Jews of Swieciany, Lithuania, are massacred in the nearby Polygon Woods.
Several hundred young Jewish men manage to escape. As a reprisal for the September 24 booby-trap deaths of German troops at the hands of Soviet soldiers in Kiev, Ukraine, 33, Jews are shot to death in a ravine at Babi Yar, Ukraine. The massacre is masterminded by Sonderkommando 4a commander Paul Blobel. The German government prohibits further Jewish emigration from Germany. At the Auschwitz camp, SS officer Arthur Johann Breitwieser takes note when a comrade is rendered unconscious after accidental exposure to a disinfectant called Zyklon B.
A gaseous variant of the compound will eventually be used to kill millions of Jews. Einsatzgruppen members gather Jews of the Baltic port of Libau and machine-gun them at the local naval base. At the Buchenwald concentration camp , Dr. One victim, Serna Morgenstern, is shot in the back by an SS officer after he complimented her beauty and told her she was free to go.
In Kovno proper, Nazis lock the Jewish hospital and set it ablaze, incinerating all inside. Ghetto in Theresienstadt , Czechoslovakia established. Thousands of Jews are murdered at Edineti, Romania. At Sabac, Yugoslavia , hundreds of Gypsies are murdered. Orders for deportation of German Jews from Germany as defined by its borders. German authorities in Poland decree that any Jew found outside a designated ghetto will be shot.
Further, any non-Jewish Pole who aids a Jew will be executed. Three days after the German murder of 15, Jewish residents of Dnepropetrtovsk, Ukraine, an additional Jews are executed in the town. Mass executions of Soviet Jews in Borisov, Belorussia, 50 miles east of Minsk, Belorussia, are carried out by an Einsatzkommando following a night of celebration by German troops. Thousands of Jews are murdered at Kraljevo, Yugoslavia. Sixty-six German enlisted men and officers, and 17 Romanian officers, are killed when the Romanian headquarters in Odessa, Ukraine, explodes.
Three hours later, Jews and Communists are hanged in the central square. The next day, Jews and other civilians are seized and shot. Thousands of Jews are murdered at Kragujevac, Yugoslavia. Sixteen thousand Odessa, Ukraine, Jews are force-marched out of the city toward Dalnik, where they are bound together in groups of 40 to 50 and shot, at first in the open and later through holes drilled in the walls of warehouses. Three of these structures are set ablaze and a fourth is exploded by artillery fire. The rebellion is put down by regular German Army units, artillery, and air power.
All Jews in Tatarsk are murdered. Eichmann approves plan for use of mobile gas vans. Pigeon-keepers at Kiev, Ukraine, are executed on the assumption that the birds could be used to carry messages. Germans inform Jews of Kalisz, Poland , that elderly Jews in convalescent homes are to be moved to another home the next day. The van is specially outfitted to route carbon monoxide into the cargo are. Jews of Sluzk, 60 miles south of Minsk, Belorussia, are annihilated by Einsatzkommando troops, half of whom are German, half Lithuanian.
More elderly Jews from a convalescent home in Kalisz, Poland , are taken away in gassing vans. A year-old boy who escapes the Ninth Fort massacre of October 28 returns to the Kovno Ghetto and reveals what happened. Einsatzgruppen mass killings of Jews all over Southern Russia. Preparations include construction of the killing centers at Belzec, Sobibor, and Treblinka in the territory of the General Government. More than 15, Serbian Jews deported to a concentration camp at Sajmiste, Yugoslavia , are later killed in mobile gassing units disguised as Red Cross vans.
A Jewish ghetto is established at Brest-Litovsk, Belorussia. Construction of an extermination center begins at Belzec, Poland. A Jewish ghetto at Grodno, Belorussia, is established. Popular German film star Joachim Gottschalk kills his family and himself rather than submit to the deportation and probable deaths of his Jewish wife and child. Twelve thousand Jews are transported from Minsk, Belorussia, to burial pits in the nearby Tuchinka Forest and murdered. More than 17, Jews are forced from Rovno, Ukraine, and murdered at burial pits in the Sosenki Forest, outside of town.
Germany is forced to halt outside Moscow due to sub-sero temperatures. Eight Warsaw Jews, including six women, are executed for leaving the ghetto without permission. The executioners, pressed into service, are Polish policemen. Over the next two months Mennecke determines that about prisoners are too weak or ill to work. He orders their killing as part of an operation codenamed 14f To prepare for the imminent arrival of inmates, young Jewish men from Prague are brought in as forced laborers. Auschwitz II Auschwitz-Birkenau is established. The camp was originally designated for the incarceration of large numbers of Soviet prisoners of war but was later used as a killing center.
The first of 19 deportation trains leaves Germany for Riga, Latvia. Hitler entertains Hajj Amin al-Husseini. The grand mufti of Jerusalem pledges to cooperate in the extermination of the Jews and offers to enlist Arabs to fight for Germany. The German Ministry of Occupied Eastern Territories decrees that the destruction of Jews shall continue irrespective of economic considerations; i. During the murder of Jews at Novogrudok, Belorussia, Jews resist and kill 20 Nazis before being gunned down. A death camp opens at Chelmno, Poland. Mass murders of Jews in the Ukraine and Volhynia region of Poland are slowed when the frozen ground prevents the digging of execution pits.
Fur coats belonging to Jews in eastern Germany are confiscated by the Nazis. Seven thousand Jews from Novogrudok, Belorussia, are forced to stand all day and night in frigid temperatures outside the municipal courthouse. Five thousand are taken away to their deaths on the 6th; the remaining are impressed into forced labor at suburban Pereshike. Carrier-based Japanese aircraft attack American naval bases in the Pacific, with heavy assaults against Pearl Harbor, Hawaii, as well as Clark Field in the Philippines. President Roosevelt declares war on Japan. It allows German troops to execute any obstructive non-German civilians in occupied nations.
The Nazis begin gas-van extermination operations at the Chelmno death camp; by April , , Jews had been murdered there. Among the victims is a preeminent Jewish historian, year-old Simon Dubnow. On the 8th alone, Jews are killed this way. Seven hundred victims are from Kolo, Poland. Situated in Polish territory annexed by Germany, Chelmno closed in March and resumed its killing operations during two months in the early summer of SS and German civilian officials killed at least , Jews and an undetermined number of Gypsies and Poles at Chelmno using special mobile gas vans.
Germany and Italy declare war on the United States. Germany , Italy, and Japan agree that none will pursue a separate peace. The U. In the Warsaw Ghetto, a German policeman opens fire on a Jewish funeral procession, killing two mourners and wounding five other people. On this first day of Chanukah, 15 Jews are shot to death in the courtyard of the Warsaw Ghetto prison.
Lipke plans to construct a Jewish hiding place beneath his home. Hans Frank, governor-general of Occupied Poland , notes in his diary that some 3,, Jews live in the region under his control. Nazis display the corpses of several thousand Soviet prisoners of war on a road in Minsk, Belorussia. The United States passes amendments to the Selective Service Act, making men ages 20 to 44 eligible for military service.
A Jewish physician from Prague, Czechoslovakia, Dr. First partisan manifesto in Vilna. Six hundred Soviet prisoners of war are murdered in a gas-chamber experiment at Auschwitz. Christian Wirth, Nazi executions expert, hooks an armored-car diesel engine to the gas chambers at Belzec. The bodies are buried in mass graves in a nearby meadow. Nearly all of the remaining Jews in Odessa, Ukraine , are deported to concentration camps.
A special medical commission visits the Gross-Rosen concentration camp to select human subjects for medical experimentation. Declaration of the United Nations signed by Allied nations. The United Nations is formed in Washington, D. In the U. The Jewish ghetto at Kharkov , Ukraine , is liquidated. Throughout the day at the Chelmno death camp, Jewish deportees from nearby villages are systematically gassed in vans; German and Ukrainian workers pull gold teeth and fillings from the corpses' mouths.
The governments-in-exile of Belgium , Czechoslovakia , France , Greece , Holland , Luxembourg , Norway , Poland , and Yugoslavia condemn German atrocities against their citizens without specifically mentioning Jews. The British Foreign Office approves the declaration but doesn't mention Jews. Concentration and expulsion of Dutch Jewry begins. The United States blacklists European companies, making it illegal for any American to continue or begin business transactions with them.
Walter von Reichenau, a Wehrmacht general who cooperated with Einsatzgruppen in Russia , dies of a heart attack. Soviet forces recapture Mozhaisk, the closest that German troops had come to Moscow.
With this, the Soviet capital is saved from occupation. Figures also are given for nations not yet under Nazi control, including England , , Spain , Switzerland 18, , Sweden 18, , and Turkey 55, The total meeting time is less than 90 minutes. They force them onto the ice, shoot the ice to break it up, and then shoot those who do not quickly drown. Four hundred Jewish intellectuals are arrested and subsequently murdered in Kolomyia, Ukraine. In a speech to the German public, Hitler commemorates the ninth anniversary of his taking power, declaring that the end result of the war will not be the destruction of the Aryans but will be the complete annihilation of the Jews.
The speech is monitored in Washington, D. Report from Einsatzgruppe A pertaining to the liquidation of , Jews in the Baltic states. Start of deportations to Theresienstadt. Thirty-three Jewish doctors in the Warsaw Ghetto begin a study of the effects of starvation as they themselves slowly starve to death. Jewish partisans in the Eastern Galicia region of Poland attack German troops in several locations. Bricks and cut stone made by concentration-camp inmates are diverted from future official monuments and buildings to construct badly needed German arms factories.
The first mass gassings of Jews at the Auschwitz death camp begin. Jews at the Dvinsk concentration camp are forced to witness the execution of a Jewish woman who exchanged a piece of cloth with a non-Jewish inmate for a box of flour. More than Jewish passengers attempting to save their lives by reaching Palestine are drowned. Only one passenger survives. Mass murder of Jews in Charkow Kharkov , Ukraine 14, victims. This month, nearly Jews in the Warsaw Ghetto die of starvation. In Norway , the Hirdens Bedriftsvern, a collaborationist, anti-Resistance unit, is created to protect Norwegian factories and infrastructure from saboteurs.
A brief article appears in the London press reporting that all Jews in Mariupol, Ukraine , have been killed. By October , , Jews had been murdered there. Thousands of Belorussian Jews are transported to Koidanav, Belorussia , where they are murdered. Children from a Jewish nursery in the Minsk Ghetto are thrown into a sandpit, tossed sweets, and then smothered to death.
More than Jewish adults from Minsk are also killed. First conference on sterilization : Definitions pertaining to sterilization of persons of mixed blood. During a meeting at the Head Office for Reich Security, Adolf Eichmann emphasizes the need for strict security during deportation and annihilation of Jews presently living in Germany , Austria , Moravia, and Bohemia.
Germans have already killed , Jews in Ukraine alone. At Ilja, Poland , Jews sent to labor on a farm join Soviet partisans in a nearby forest. In reprisal, the Germans shoot old and sick Jews in the streets, then herd more than Jews into a building that is set ablaze.
All inside die. More than Jews from Pochep, Russia , are executed. Extermination camp Belzec established. Full-scale extermination begins; deportees are accepted from Poland and from as far away as the western provinces of Germany. By the end of , , Jews will be murdered there. Resettlement of the ghetto in Lublin : 26, persons sent to extermination camps Belzec and Majdanek and other camps.
The SS establishes a women's camp at Auschwitz-Birkenau. The first deportations of Jews from Western Europe to Belzec begins. Public notices pertaining to the identification of Jewish homes in Germany. Between March and October , deportation of 60, Slovakian Jews, some to Auschwitz , others to the extermination camp Majdanek. The first transport of Jews sent by Adolf Eichmann 's office goes to Auschwitz. The first deportations of Jews from France to Auschwitz begin.
By the end of , the Germans had deported more than 75, Jews from France to camps in the East, above all, to the Auschwitz-Birkenau killing center in Occupied Poland, where most of them perished. Fritz Sauckel is named chief of manpower to expedite recruitment of slave labor. German troops raid the Minsk Ghetto , searching for and arresting Jewish Resistance leaders. Fifteen thousand Jews are deported from Lvov , Ukraine, to Belzec. The Lublin deportations are the first major deportations carried out under Operation Reinhard, the code name for the German plan to kill more than 2 million Jews living in the General Government of Occupied Poland.
Prohibition of the use of public transportation by Jews. Exception only for forced laborers, if their workplace is farther than seven kilometers from their place of residence. Taking a seat in the conveyance is not allowed. Additional restrictions during the course of World War II : Jews were forbidden to use public telephones and automatic ticket dispensing machines; to congregate in railroad stations or visit restaurants; to enter forests parks or step on lawns; to keep dogs, cats, birds, or other pets; to place orders with organized skilled trades; and to obtain newspapers or periodicals.
All electrical or optical equipment had to be turned in without compensation, as well as bicycles, typewriters, fur coats, and wool items. Jews could not obtain any seafood items or ration cards for meat, clothing, milk, or tobacco. They were not allowed any white bread, fruit, canned fruit, candy or sweets, and shaving soap. The first transports of Jews arrive at the camp at Majdanek which will begin gassing Jews later in the year. German headquarters at Arras, France , is attacked by the French Resistance. Jews are mocked and hanged at Mlawa, Poland.
They are deported to the Belzec death camp. Einsatzgruppen Report: No Jews left in Crimea. Three thousand Jews from Zamosc, Poland , are deported to the Belzec death camp. SS officials in the Ukraine inform authorities in Berlin that the Crimea is judenrein purged of Jews. The Nazi government decrees that apartments occupied by Jews in Greater Germany must be identified as such. In the Warsaw Ghetto , 52 people on a wanted list are dragged from their beds and killed. The Reichstag grants Hitler full authority in executive, legislative, and judicial matters.
Nazis execute 60 Jews in the Warsaw Ghetto.
The Jews of Pinsk, Poland , are ordered to establish a ghetto within one day. Twenty thousand Jews will move into it. Twelve hundred Jews are killed in Diatlovo, Belorussia. The Jews offer armed resistance, but it is futile. More than Jews in the Warsaw Ghetto die of starvation. Nazis force their way into Jewish apartments in Warsaw, shoot and club the residents, and throw the bodies from windows. A slave-labor camp opens near Minsk, Belorussia. Small groups of Jewish youths manage to escape into the woods outside Lida and Stolpce, towns in Belorussia.
After trial gassings in April, an SS special detachment begin gassing operations at the Sobibor killing center. By November , the special detachment had killed approximately , Jews at Sobibor. In the Eastern Galicia region of Poland , Jews aged 14 to 60 are driven to isolated spots and killed by hand grenades and machine guns after being forced to dig their own graves. Other victims of this Aktion include orphans, residents of old-age homes, and women in the streets.
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Inmates at Auschwitz-Birkenau are put to work as slave laborers at the camp itself and at a synthetic-oil and rubber plant at nearby Monowitz. Jewish women at Auschwitz-Birkenau are selected for medical experiments. A Jewish inmate at a labor camp at Schwenningen, Germany , is buried in earth up to his shoulders as punishment for having an attack of diarrhea outside a barracks; after more than ten hours in the ground, the man dies.
A slave-labor camp opens at Maly Trostinets , Belorussia. It is charged with the roundup of Dutch Jews for deportation to the East. Communist Jews in Paris initiate organized armed resistance to the Nazi occupiers. The Bund Jewish Labor Organization of Poland appeals to the Polish government-in-exile in London to persuade the Allied governments to warn the German government about the consequences of the murder of the Polish Jews. It reports that , Polish Jews have already been executed.
Hundreds perish from heat and hunger, and others die during Allied bombings after being forbidden to use air-raid shelters. Jewish Council members at Bilgoraj, Poland , are executed after refusing to compile a list of candidates for deportation. About Jews are murdered at Dvinsk, Latvia. Only about Jews are left in Dvinsk, down from 16, from the previous year.
First selection for gassing preformed at Auschiwtz-Birkenau. They were housed in an isolation ward prior to being killed in the gas chambers. Between May and January , more than one million people were killed or died at the Auschwitz camp complex. Close to , were never registered and most likely were selected for gassing immediately upon arrival.
Nine out of ten of those who dies at the Auschwitz complex were Jewish. Jewish teachers and educators in the Warsaw Ghetto create a special day for children, during which they are treated to games, plays, and special rations of sweets. Jakob Edmund Speyer, a Jew from Frankfurt , Germany , who invented an important painkiller called Eukodal, dies of exhaustion. Alter Dworetsky, a member of the Jewish Council at Diatlovo, Belorussia , escapes to a nearby forest, only to be shot to death by Soviet partisans after refusing to hand over his pistol. The demand is ignored by Britain, which controls Palestine.
The New York Times reports that more than , Jews have been machine-gunned by Nazis in the Baltic countries, , in Poland , and some , in western Russia.
The I. Farben synthetic-rubber and petroleum plant opens at Monowice, near Auschwitz , using Jewish forced laborers from the camp. Great Britain and the Soviet Union sign a mutual assistance treaty. Belgian Jews are ordered to wear the Yellow Star. Vichy France forbids Jews access to all restaurants and cafes, libraries, sports grounds, squares, and other public places. Three thousand Jews led by Asher Czerkaski resist Germans at Radziwillow, Ukraine ; are killed but the others melt into nearby forests.
In the Warsaw Ghetto , an ill Jewish man is tossed through a window to the ground, where he is shot. Auschwitz is ravaged by an epidemic of typhus. Germans invade Jewish hospitals in Sosnowiec, Poland , murdering newborns and tearing patients from operating tables. Ambulatory patients are sent to Auschwitz and gassed. A young Sosnowiec Jew named Harry Blumenfrucht endures two weeks of Nazi torture, refusing to name his co-conspirators in a scheme to steal weapons.
His suffering ends when he is hanged. Three thousand Jews at Pilica, Poland , are deported to Belzec , but several hundred manage to escape before the journey is complete. In Yugoslavia , a collaborationist paramilitary force, Heimwehr Home Defense , is established. Treblinka extermination camp opened. Mass exterminations by gassing were started on July 23, ; , Jews murdered there by August Another will be deported the following week. This was an I. Start of deportation of German Jews to Theresienstadt. The BBC reports that , Jews have been exterminated.
Its information comes from a report smuggled out of Poland by the Jewish Bund in Warsaw. Viennese Jews are deported to the Minsk Ghetto. Ten Jewish policemen are among the victims. Reinhard Heydrich , chief of the Reich Security Police and SD, dies of blood poisoning caused by injuries suffered in the May 27 attack by Czech partisans.
Adolf Eichmann insists via a telegram sent to Gestapo officials that residents of a mental institution must be included in a planned mass deportation of Jews from Coblenz, Germany , to Lublin , Poland. A Jewish woman who has escaped from the Warsaw Ghetto into the city proper is dragged back to the ghetto and shot. The Jewish Council at Pilica, Poland , warns that every able-bodied Jew must attempt to flee to nearby forests. At Lidice, Czechoslovakia , Germans begin to murder over men and boys in retaliation for the attack on Reinhard Heydrich.
The Germans will murder another 47 men, women, and children at Lezaky, Czechoslovakia. When a Jewish mother at Pabianice, Poland , fights fiercely for her baby during a deportation, the baby is taken from her and thrown out a window. A gassing van is sent to Riga for the execution of Jews. One thousand Jews are deported from Prague to the East, where they are murdered. Adolf Eichmann meets with representatives from France , Belgium , and Holland to discuss deportation plans for Jews. Two thousand Jews break out of Dzisna, Belorussia.
Authorities in Riga request a second gassing van. Cyril and Methodius Church.