My Thoughts

In this class I had a wonderful time learning about all of the different incidents not only about the Holocaust but also about many other genocides. Though it does seem quite weird to use the word wonderful to describe this class it was. Though I was able to lean a lot of things from this class one main thing that surprised me was the fact that we do not realize that all of us have that ” killing way” inside of us. In a different situation we do not realize that we too could fall under the same propaganda that Hitler used to fill the minds of the German people with false accusations. Though we stand up for things we believe in everyday it is really hard to see that we could actually do some of these terrible things that at the time we are learning about them we say we would never do.

When genocides or bigotry occur I think it is very hard to say how I could make a difference because it would really depend. Like I said before we all have that right to stand up for what we believe in and that may have us kill for what we believe. I think that I can make a difference by spreading the word about these genocides and showing that Never Again has come Again.

Never Again probably had a meaning at some point but it truly to me has no meaning anymore. At the point right after the Holocaust it probably had great meaning in Never Again having such a thing happen, but since then many genocides have occurred and though they may not have been as bad they still have had an affect on our lives. It is scaring knowing that Never Again may just be a memory in the past.

North Korea vs. Holocaust

The North Korean genocide is still happening to this day and why is that? I thought that we said never again would such a terrible thing happen after the Holocaust. Just reading about the North Korean camps makes me sick. There are many similarities between North Korea and the Holocaust. First there is the obvious starvation in both camps. The Jews and the Koreans in the different camps both had to  and have to go through starvation everyday. For the Jews they were able to get little amounts of food served to them but with the North Koreans they get little to no food and the food they do get they have to find for themselves. Many have had to drink their own urine, or eat mice, moles, frogs or worms. The second similarity between these two camps that i found was that there was a lot of betrayal between prisoners at both of the camps. The Jews would rat each other out any day if it meant keeping themselves or their families safe, even though usually they too were eventually taken to concentration camps or death camps. The North Koreans would tell on each other just to get a little food or as a way to not get tortured. The last way that these two places were similar is the way that they had public executions. In both of the camps if someone had tried to escape or if they had done something wrong there would be public executions to show the other prisoners what could happen to them. In both North Korea and Germany they had similar ways of executing them such as shooting or hanging them. I feel that North Korea was one of my favorite genocides to learn about in this unit because it was very informative on how the two, the Holocaust and the Korean camps, were so similar.

The North Korean Concentration Camps

Link to learn more: North Korea Now

Darfur vs. Holocaust

In both the Holocaust and the Darfur genocide the Jews and the African tribes, were killed because they were different. Some similarities between these two horrific events are surprising. You would never expect something as terrible as these two acts to happen over and over. A similarity between Darfur and the Holocaust is that there was no government representation. For the Jews during the reign of Hitler there was never a Jew who was in the government or at least one who would fight back for his beliefs. This is the same thing with Darfur. The African tribes did not have any say in the government because they did not have a representative in office therefore there was never someone to stand up for them. The second similarity is that both the Jews and the African tribes were persecuted because of their religion difference. The African tribes did not have the same beliefs as the Arab Janjaweeds so they were persecuted because they were not Arabians. The Jews were also persecuted for their religion and many a times were told to quit practicing it. The final similarity between these two terrible acts is that both of the groups who were persecuting people were allowed to freely roam inside of peoples houses or belongings. The Jews were kicked out of their homes or stayed their while Nazi soldiers dug around in their belongings and took what  they liked. Then the African tribes were forced to let the Janjaweed destroy and dig through their homes as they pleased. There are many differences between the Darfur incident and the Holocaust but also many similarities that I hope to have just explained to you.

Darfur

Link to learn more: Darfur

Rwanda vs. Holocaust

The Rwanda genocide may have some similarities to the Holocaust and the Nazi death camps but mainly it is very different. Though there are many differences between the Rwanda genocide and the Holocaust I feel that the importance is in the similarities. One main similarity between the Rwanda episode and the Holocaust is that both were killed for helping someone. If say a Nazi helped a Jew to escape and was caught than both the Jew and the Nazi would be killed. Same thing with the Hutus and Tutsis. Hutu who helped a Tutsi in a time of need and was caught would be executed so that everyone would know not to help the other people. The second way that these two incidents are similar is that both of the people would take the clothes and shoes of those who were dead. With the Nazi death camps when the Jews were killed than the Nazis would take the clothes and shoes of those dead and keep them for themselves and or ship them back to Germany. With the Tutsis and the Hutus when the Tutsis were killed the Hutus would take their clothes and shoes and even sometimes skulls to line up and show hey this is what happens when you think you are the master race. Then the last thing that is similar about these two genocides is that both victims were killed because of racial purity. The Nazis wanted to purify their country by getting rid of the thieves, murderers and all around criminals so they felt the need to kill all Jews because they were considered to have ruined Germany. With the Hutus and the Tutsis the Hutus wanted to racially purify their area by getting rid of the Tutsis. There may be many important differences between the Rwanda genocide and the Holocaust but the most important thing to look at is the fact that the similarities are scary. When we say that these types of horrific acts will never happen again we should truly mean it.

Rwanda Genocide

Link to learn more: Rwanda Genocide

Pol Pot vs Hitler

Hitler and Pol-Pot were both deranged dictators who committed genocide on their people. This is only one similarity between the two genocides that occurred, and there are many more. The first way that they are similar is that both dictators starved and worked their prisoners to death or until too weak to work, where they were then sent to their death. In the Nazi death camps prisoners were sent right off the cattle cars either straight to their death or into a separate line where they were then forced to work and do strenuous activities. In Cambodia they were worked as slave labor in the rice fields. Second way that these two genocides are so similar is the fact that in both camps they were tortured. In Cambodia they would torture the prisoners by water boarding, beatings and maiming. In the Nazi camps they were tortured by being beaten and also by cruel human experimentation by Dr. Mengele and others. The last reason that these to genocides were so similar is the fact that the United States new about these genocides and did not do anything right away. In Cambodia when the U.S. learned about what was happening they did not do anything for a while and pretended that nothing was happening. Then with the Holocaust when the U.S. began to learn about it, it was a little too late and also the government did not want to get into a war so they ignored what was happening. Although there may be some very different things between these camps it is apparent that there are also many similarities. Even though there is the saying Never Again… it seems as though we still constantly have these terrible things happening.

The Cambodian Genocide or Pol-Pot’s reign.

Link to learn more: History of the Pol-Pot Genocide

Soviet Gulags vs. Nazi Death Camps

Although the Soviet gulag was at a different time than the Nazi death camps there are many similarities between them. First similarity is that those who were persecuted were both taken to these separate camps the same way. Both those who were sent to the Soviet gulags and those sent to the Nazi death camps were both transported by cattle cars and treated like animals. The second similarity is that they both had very similar barracks that they had to live in while in the camps. The Nazi camps and the gulags both had barracks that stunk of sickness and death as well as feces and just an overall dirty smell. The final reason that these two places were so similar is that both of their living conditions were the same. In both places they did not have very much food and they were forced to do manual labor such as digging graves for fellow prisoners who had died or were killed.

Also there were many differences between these camps. The Soviet gulag some would say had a much harder time than those Jews who were sent to the death camps. During Stalin’s time was when the Soviet gulags happened. Prisoners were either killed immediately or forced to work which is similar to the Jews from the Nazi time, but during the gulags they would interrogate the prisoners and if you happened to survive this terrible time then you would have to live your life out with the terrible scars of what had happened. And if you were caught doing something bad or just you were the one the guards decided to  pick on for the day then you were sent to a cell with no blankets or really any food and you were forced to stay there for as long as the guards left you there. Though there may be many similarities between these to places I feel like the Soviet Gulags may have been worse than the Nazi death camps.

Soviet Gulag

Link to learn more: Soviet Gulag History

Holocaust Denial

Debating a Holocaust denier can be done as long as you have evidence to back up your facts. The first way to debate a holocaust denier is by using documents left by the Nazis. A specific document that would help you to prove the Holocaust is the blueprints for the crematoria and the gas chambers. Many deniers believe that there were no gas chambers or crematoriums but according to this document there are gas chambers and also very specific places for the crematoriums and the gas chambers. The next form of evidence that you can use as evidence to support that the Holocaust really did happen is the photos or films taken by the Nazis and the Russians. There are many different photos that have been pulled to America’s attention. Some of these photos were taken by the Nazis and they show them shooting the victims and other photos and films are from when the Russians came and liberated the camps. There are pictures of piles and piles of dead bodies as well as pictures of the mass graves. As a Holocaust denier how can you really say that these camps did not exist when there is all of these photos that prove that this happened? The last thing you can use as evidence is eyewitness accounts. One of the eyewitness accounts is from the side of the Nazis. Adolf Eichman when asked about the discussions at the Wannsee Conference he said that they discussed all the ways they could kill the Jews. Okay so this is a straight up account of what was going on how can deniers not see this? Though debating a Holocaust denier can be very hard as long as you have evidence you can prove that the Holocaust really did happen.

This is an image of a gas chamber blueprint

Link to learn more: Holocaust Denial