Monday, November 9, 2009

Kristallnacht - November 9-10, 1938

Kristallnacht broken shop windows
Kristallnacht, example of physical damage

Kristallnacht was an anti-Jewish pogrom in Nazi Germany and Austria on 9 to 10 November 1938.

In German, Kristallnacht means crystal night or the night of broken glass, alluding to the enormous number of shop windows of Jewish-owned stores that were broken that night.

Kristallnacht was triggered by the assassination (November 7, 1938) of German diplomat Ernst vom Rath, in Paris, by Herschel Grynszpan (17), a German-born Polish Jew, as revenge for the expulsion of 12,000 Polish-born Jews back to Poland, among them was Grynszpan's family.

As a result, in a coordinated attack on Jewish people and their property, 99 Jews were murdered and 25,000 to 30,000 were arrested and placed in concentration camps. 267 synagogues were destroyed and thousands of homes and businesses were ransacked. This was done by the Hitler Youth, Gestapo, SS and SA. Kristallnacht also served as a pretext and a means for the wholesale confiscation of firearms from German Jews.

Herschel Grynszpan was transferred from Paris to Berlin, in 1940, by the Nazis and probably was murdered by the Gestapo by the end of the war.

While the assassination of Rath served as a pretext for the attacks, Kristallnacht was part of a broader Nazi policy of antisemitism and persecution of the Jews. Kristallnacht was followed by further economic and political persecutions and is viewed by many historians as the beginning of the Final Solution, leading towards the genocide of the Holocaust.

Source: Wikipedia (All text is available under the terms of the GNU Free Documentation License)

1 comment:

  1. thank you for commemorating this awful moment in human history...may the world never forget what happened on this fateful day in 1938...and may we echoe the refrain of survivors everywhere, "never again!"

    Never Again! admin