General Question

Ncshawty's avatar

Im trying to limit my topic of the holocaust, which would you most like to hear about in a essay?

Asked by Ncshawty (79 points ) October 21st, 2008

help please

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33 Answers

jvgr's avatar

Perhaps you could list the specific areas which you are considering.

Ncshawty's avatar

I was thinking maybe the history of the holocaust….

tonedef's avatar

Write about oppression of gypsies. You never hear about the gypsies.

jvgr's avatar

Ncshawty: “I was thinking maybe the history of the holocaust…”
That’s pretty broad for an essay.
I like @tonedef’s suggestion, and there are undoubtedly similar issues you could uncover if you focus your topic.

jessturtle23's avatar

If you go a pick up a copy of The Rise and Fall of the Third Reich you will find all sorts of stuff to write about. It goes into some pretty horrific things like how the Nazi Generals families entertained guest that you really don’t hear much about.

tonedef's avatar

Wikipedia has an extraordinarily large amount of material on the Holocaust. Don’t use it as the primary info source for your essay, but it’s really inspiring. Maybe inspiring isn’t a good word for it. It gives you lots of good ideas.

MrMeltedCrayon's avatar

Maybe you could write about the German Resistance. So often you hear about those horrible, evil Nazis but you (or I, at least) almost never see anything about the Germans that resisted and fought against the Nazi regime. Colonel Stauffenberg and the 20 July plot are particularly interesting in my opinion.

jvgr's avatar

Another possibility is to base an essay on this quote by Herman Goering
and the abililty of leaders to cow the citizenry into agreeing with bad ideas.

deaddolly's avatar

Personally, I think a brief intro about how it all began and then following a family thru it. That would be interesting.

shilolo's avatar

How about a discussion of the complicity of the average German citizen in the atrocities of the Holocaust. For example, while many of the concentration camps were in Poland, some very large ones were in Germany proper. Dachau is 10 miles from Munich, Germany’s third largest city.

Another possibility is to discuss the use of slave labor by many German firms, for which little restitution has been paid in addition to no atonement. Many of these companies thrived during the war, and represent the bastion of German industry today.

Tantigirl's avatar

The holocaust wasn’t just one single event, it comes under the umbrella of many, many events that happened. There is so much you could write about, it is hard to pin one topic down. There were the concentration camps, the extermination camps, the third reich, the SS, Hitler Youth, Jews (both in hiding and the camps), Gypsies, Gay people, the underground, the medical experiments (Mengele was just one of the doctors who performed experiments on the camp inmates), the Nuremburg war trials. In fact I would suggest reading books about the criminal proceedings during Nuremburg as they would be extremely helpful. They would have inmate accounts of what was done and by whom during the war, and also the Nazis accounts of what they say happened. Some of them did actually tell the truth.

If you are considering writing about the medical experiments, a good book to read is Doctors from Hell: The Horrific Account of Nazi Experiments on Humans written by Vivien Spitz, who was a young court reporter during the criminal trials of the doctors who performed the medical experiments. I’ve read this book, and it goes into great detail about the experiments performed (with rather shocking photographs), why the doctors performed the individual experiments, and what the results actually were.

I also suggest that you check out the website for the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum in Washington DC (http://www.ushmm.org/). There is a huge amount of information on their site, and I think that if you contacted them directly they would be of great help to you.

asmonet's avatar

Nazi experiments have always fascinated me the most, and how far reaching their abuse was. Did you know Bayer bought people for experimentation from Nazi Germany? Not sure on the specifics, but I know they got involved. :(

jessturtle23's avatar

Bayer could have been buying the people to get them away. That happened a lot especially when rich people were trying to get their families out.

shilolo's avatar

@jesseturtle23. Sorry, but that apologistic story doesn’t fit the truth. IG Farben (Bayer) not only held the patent for and participated in the synthesis of Zyklon B for the mass murder perpetrated in the concentration camps, but also used slave labor. This article from 1999 talks about the use of slave labor, and the formation of a compensatory fund for victims.

asmonet's avatar

@shilolo: You beat me to it!

Bayer was no Schindler. I just didn’t wanna start typing from memory on such a controversial issue.

There are stories about some serious crazy jumping off from Nazi administrations to regular jobs. One of the women who ran a woman’s concentration camp went from there to working at BMW. Another company who had close ties with Nazi Germany and later admitted to using tens of thousands of slave laborers. I’ll find out her name soon as I can. But think about it, the woman was top dog, selected those to be gassed on entry, complete psycho. Then, went to BMW. Wtf?

Found it!

mea05key's avatar

How the German torture the jews. Talk about the crazy doctor who did an experiment on people’s eye. Talk about what happened in the camp.

jessturtle23's avatar

I had never heard of bayer being one of the companies that’s why I said maybe. Now I know.

asmonet's avatar

@mea05key: Dr. Mengele?

Being German, the tense of your post bothered me. How the GermanS tortureD the Jews might have been better.

mea05key's avatar

@asmonet yeah must be HIM. he is evil.

asmonet's avatar

The worst part is, we failed to hold him accountable.

Tantigirl's avatar

Mengele was a horrible man, however he is one of many doctors who experimented on the concentration camp inmates.

asmonet, when you say “we failed to hold him accountable”, is the “we” you are talking about the German people?

asmonet's avatar

I don’t necessarily identify hugely with ‘the German people’. In this case, I meant ‘we’ the world. He and every other Nazi member were the problem of every human being and their conscience.

Yes, Mengele was one of many Nazi doctors who did despicable things, I singled him out because he was a top physician for them and because as I recall he was responsible for the ‘eye experiments’ referred to earlier.

Tantigirl's avatar

I thought you may have meant the world as a whole, however I wasn’t 100% from the way it was worded.

I guess it depends on your definition of accountable. From what I’ve read, he was held accountable by the war tribunals at Nuremberg, along with the other doctors who performed those horrible acts.

asmonet's avatar

My definition would be that he didn’t spend the rest of his life country-hopping through Central and South America only to die in his 70s a natural death. I generally do not support the death penalty, I find life imprisonment a far greater punishment. If you’ve ever been arrested and held for any period of time I think you’d see my point. I would have liked him to be locked the fuck up.

At the least.

I see what you mean Tan, having mentioned being German it makes sense. Thanks for pointing that out. :)

shilolo's avatar

@Tantigirl. Your point about the Nuremburg trials is partially true. What I think asmonet is getting at is that only a fraction of the number of people responsible for Holocaust atrocities were ever brought to justice in the sense that they were punished for their actions. Owing to the complicity of various groups ranging from the Germans, to the Austrians, to the CIA, to South Americans, many of the worst offenders were free to live the rest of their lives unfettered.

asmonet's avatar

@Shilolo: Exactly.

Tantigirl's avatar

He should have been locked up without a doubt, and tortured himself, although I don’t think there is any way that he could suffer worse than what he did to the inmates. A lot of these people were on the run though, so again, even though they weren’t ever thrown in the clink, they did live looking over their shoulders for the rest of their lives. They are still finding them too, although I think most of them are dead now. A large majority of them were sentenced at Nuremberg in absentia.

asmonet's avatar

RIght, I mean, not to mention him again but Mengele eventually became a bit unhinged from worry that he would be found out. Still, if that’s all you have to deal with after injecting children with fatal infections and worse… you’re living a sweet fucking life.

cyndyh's avatar

I’m always more interested in discussions of how it happened and how to prevent it from ever happening again. Similarities in conditions in other places where genocide occurred give clues to what it takes to make the environment ready for the horrors and clues about prevention.

Tantigirl's avatar

You’re absolutely right asmonet, the fact that he got away, and actually had friends who helped him escape, and hide, is reprehensible. The fact that anyone could even consider helping that bastard is unbelievable.

Ncshawty's avatar

Thank you ALL :)

Tantigirl's avatar

Ncshawty we kind of got off track there, and hopefully we have been of some help to you when we were on track. lol

asmonet's avatar

Actually, I think you could say our running off onto different tangents may have helped. The subject that proved most popular on here seems to be Mengele and Nazi medical practices. :)

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