09 November, 2021

09 November, 1938


A rare double “On This Day” post for me. Just as I remember the Wall Coming Down so well, I should also remind you of the other major event on this day in the 20th century.

This one is perhaps more relevant today as anti-Semitism is quite on the rise again.

Kristallnacht, the Night of Broken Glass, was a nationwide anti-Jewish pogrom in Nazi Germany beginning on the evening of November 9, 1938, and continuing through the next day. Actually, it was much more than just a pogrom. Kristallnacht was the day Hitler’s final solution came out of the closet with anti-Jewish riots in Germany, Austria, and the Sudetenland region of Czechoslovakia. It was the night the Holocaust began.

The Holocaust is unique in its volume and horrors and is a singular event in world history. Yes, there are genocides of other people and other horrors. There were even other atrocities committed against the Jewish people.   But generally, a genocide is waged to suppress a group, take their territory, or for political reasons, or some economic reason like taking their wealth or enslaving a people. This was different– the Jews targeted by Hitler and the Nazis had no land and held relatively little power.  Beginning with Kristallnacht, the Nazis engaged in a genocide of Jews. Its only purpose was to wipe them off the face of the Earth.


Never again. Never forget.

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