Dr. Alex Grobman
Dr. Alex Grobman Courtesy

Why the Jews? And specifically the Jews?

To the Nazis, they were a satanic force that supposedly ruled the world through their control of Wall Street and the communist regime in the Soviet Union. A sophisticated individual would probably have recognized the inconsistency of this logic as well as the false assertion that Jews are a separate race. Yet, however simplistic, for the common German, and later for the rest of Europe, this absurd claim served as a useful rationalization.

Sadly, there are people throughout the world who still subscribe to this and like myths.

Believing in all sorts of pseudoscientific and racial nonsense, the Nazis saw the Jews as a cancer, a dangerous virus, a bacillus that, if left unchecked, would allow the Jews to dominate the world completely. [1]

In 1942, Hitler told Heinrich Himmler, head of the SS, that “The discovery of the Jewish virus is one of the greatest revolutions that has taken place in the world, the battle in which we are engaged today is one of the same sort as the battle waged, during the last century, by [Louis] Pasteur and [Robert] Koch. How many diseases have their origin in the Jews. We shall regain our health only by eliminating the Jew. Everything has a cause, nothing comes by chance.” [2]

Hitler believed that the Jews, through miscegenation, were race polluters whose aim was to obliterate the white race: “With every means he tries to destroy the racial foundations of the people he has set out to subjugate. Just as he himself systematically ruins women and girls, he does not shrink back from pulling down the blood barriers of others, even on a large scale. It was and it is the Jews who bring the Negroes into the Rhineland, always with the same secret thought and clear aim of ruining the hated white race by the necessarily insulting bastardization, throwing it down from its cultural and political height, and himself rising to be its master.[3]

Failure to confront the Jew would spell disaster for the human race, Hitler thought, as the following excerpt from Mein Kampf shows:

If, with the help of his Marxist creed, the Jew is victorious over the other peoples of the world, his crown will be the funeral wreath of humanity and this planet will, as it did thousands of years ago, move through the ether devoid of men.... by defending myself against the Jew, I am fighting the work of the Lord. [4]

In other words, as philosopher Steven Katz has noted, “the Holocaust was intended as, and received its enormous power from, the fact that it aimed at restructuring the cosmos anew-now without the Jews.” [5]

Those who understood national socialism as "nothing more than a political movement," Hitler rightly observed know “scarcely anything of it. It is more than a religion: it is the will to create mankind anew.” [6]

This abiding obsession with destroying the Jewish people can also be seen in Hitler's Political Testament. In his last communication with the German people, written on April 29, 1945, at 4 a.m. just before he and his mistress Eva Braun committed suicide, Hitler declared that “Above all I charge the leadership of the nation and their followers with the strict observance of the racial laws and with merciless resistance against the universal poisoners of all peoples, international Jewry.[7]

It is this unconstrained, ideologically driven imperative that every Jew be murdered that distinguishes [the Holocaust] from prior and to date subsequent, however inhumane, acts of collective violence, ethnocide, and mass murder. [8]

No longer did the Jews have the option to convert to Christianity and escape being killed. As long as the Nazis viewed them a separate race, the Jews were destined for extinction. Nothing the Jews could do would change that.

When the Nazis attacked the Soviet Union in June 1941, they did so not only for political and strategic reasons, but also for the eradication of their mortal enemy-the Jews. [9] They pursued this ideological war even when it meant diverting resources from their troops at the front. When the need for trains to transport soldiers and supplies conflicted with the requirement to transport Jews to the extermination camps, both received equal consideration.

In June 1942, the Germans were preparing a new summer offensive in southern Russia, to which they were committing all of their 266 reserve divisions on the Eastern front. In preparation for the attack, a two-week ban on civilian traffic had been declared. After Wilhelm Kruger, Himmler's top agent in Poland, objected to the head of the railroad authority about this arrangement, they reached an agreement whereby some civilian transports would be permitted during this period. Himmler felt this was inadequate, so he intervened, leaving no doubt that regardless of the military needs the "Jewish problem" was still of the highest priority. As a result, from July 22 a train containing 5,000 Jews left Warsaw for Treblinka each day. In addition, twice a week a train containing 5,000 Jews from Przemyśl left for Belzec. [10]

During the following winter, the position of the German military began to deteriorate. The German troops who were besieging Stalingrad had been surrounded by the Red Army. To break through the Russian lines, the Germans sent in a fresh Panzer division in mid-December. At the same time, the Germans imposed a one-month ban on civilian railroad transport beginning on December 15, 1942. Even after the ban ended, the disaster at Stalingrad required extensive rail transport. But Himmler again intervened, this time on January 20, 1943, to ensure that trains were available for moving Jews to the extermination camps.

From February 1943, trains were used to deport Jews from Berlin to Auschwitz and from the Bialystok ghetto to Treblinka. By March, Jews from all over Europe were being transported to their death. In July 1944, when the Germans were evacuating Greece and needed all available rail transport, the deportation of the Jews remained on schedule. [11]

As the late Richard Rubenstein pointed out, “The Jews, during World War II, were the first victims of an all-out attempt at the physical annihilation of a people, but there is no guarantee that such an effort will not be repeated against some other group.... The mere fact that every modern government possesses such power cannot but alter the relations between those who govern and those who are governed. This power must also alter the texture of foreign relations. In a very real sense, Auschwitz has enlarged our conception of the state's capacity to do violence. A barrier has been overcome in what for millennia had been regarded as the permissible limits of political action.” [12]

“Our continued interest and fascination with the Nazi period” waned the late historian Jacob Talmon, “should keep us vigilant.it is entirely possible that this is the end that awaits many races and nations-maybe all of them. And the Jews will then prove to have been the first victim of this new experiment. The question remains, Has Auschwitz become an eternal warning or merely the first station on the road to the extermination of all races and the suicide of humanity?” [13]

Ms. Goldberg, is it clear now?

End Notes

[1] Alex Bein, "The Jewish Parasite," Leo Baeck Year Book IX (New York: East and West Library,1964): pp.3-40; Franklin H. Littell, The Crucifixion of the Jews (Macon, Ga.: Mercer University Press, 1986); Joshua Trachtenberg, The Devil and the Jews: The Medieval Conception of the Jew and Its Relation to Modern Anti-Semitism (New York: Meridian Press, 1961); Jacob L. Talmon, "European History: Seedbed of the Holocaust," Midstream XIX (May 1973): pp. 3-25; Jackson Spielvogel and David Redles, "Hitler's Racial Ideology: Content and Occult Sources," Simon Wiesenthal Center Annual 3 (New York: Kraus International Publications, 1986), 227-246; Shmuel Ettinger, "The Origins of Modern Anti-Semitism," in The Catastrophe of European Jewry: Antecedents, History, Reflections, eds. Yisrael Gutman and Livia Rothkirchen (Jerusalem: Yad Vashem, 1976),3-39; Alex Grobman, License to Murder: The Enduring Threat of the Protocols of the Elders of Zion (Noble: Oklahoma: Balfour Books, 2011); Robert Wistrich, A Lethal Obsession: Anti-Semitism from Antiquity to the Global Jihad (New York: Random House, 2010); Richard Landes and Steven T. Katz, The Paranoid Apocalypse: A Hundred Year Retrospective on The Protocols of the Elders of Zion (New York: New York University Press,2012); Phyllis Chesler, The New Anti-Semitism (Jerusalem, Israel: Gefen Publishing House, 2015).

[2] N. Cameron and R H. Stevens, trans., Hitler's Table Talk (New York: Oxford University Press, 1988), 332.

[3] Adolf Hitler, Mein Kampf (New York: Houghton Mifflin, 1969), 293-296.

[4] Ibid. 60.

[5] Steven .T Katz, The Holocaust in Historical Context, vol.1, (New York: Oxford University Press, 1994), 7.

[6] Hermann Rauschning, Gesprache mit Hitler, 231 ff., quoted in Katz, op. cit. 7.

[7] Quoted in The Life and Death of Adolf Hitler by Robert Payne (London: Jonathan Cape LTD., 1973), 591.

[8] Katz, op. cit., 10.

[9] Yehuda Bauer, "Against Mystification," in The Holocaust in Historical Perspective (Seattle: Washington University Press, 1978), 41-42.

[10] Lucy Dawidowicz, The War Against The Jews (New York: Bantam Books, 1975), 188-190.

[11] Ibid. 190-191.

[12] Richard Rubenstein, The Cunning of History (New York: Harper Colophon, 1975),2