“I refer to the conference held in Berlin today and once more point out that the planned overall measures (i.e., the Final Solution) are to be kept strictly secret.”
(Reinhard Heydrich, September 21, 1939)
Most historians assign the “Holocaust decision” to the Wannsee Conference, 20 January. 1941. Heydrich’s speech to his murder crews called Einsatsgruppen preceded by more than a year the supposed tipping point used by many historians today for the Holocaust Decision, the invasion that may have cost Germany the war, Russia.
An Einsatzgruppe D member about to shoot a Jew kneeling at a mass grave in Vinnitsa, Ukrainian SSR, Soviet Union, in 1942. The photograph is inscribed: The last Jew in Vinnitsa.(Wikipedia)
This then represents the public face of Hitler’s evolving or, perhaps better described, gradually revealed intention regarding the Jews. Certainly discussions with his closest lieutenants would have been far more direct. Which explains the candor of Reichsführer-SS Reinhard Heydrich in his September 21, 1939 “Jewish Question in the Occupied Territory” order to his Einsatzgruppen:
“I refer to the conference held in Berlin today and once more point out that the planned overall measures (i.e., the final aim) are to be kept strictly secret. Distinction must be made between:
(1) The final aim (which will require extended periods of time), and
(2) The stages leading to the fulfillment of this final aim (which will be carried out in short terms).
“The first preliminary measure for achieving the final aim is the concentration of the Jews from the countryside in the larger cities. It must be speedily implemented. … as few concentration points as possible should be established so that only those cities are designated which are either railway junctions or at least lie on a railway line.”
Many historians today, along with most Holocaust deniers, insist that Heydrich’s reference to a “final aim” means “resettlement” since that was the public face of Reich policy at that time. But if, as I suggest, the so-called “resettlement” plans such as Niskar to “the east,” or the French African colony of Madagascar were meant as distractions from Hitler’s actual intention all along, the Final Solution of the Jewish Problem then “final aim” as used by Heydrich takes on a wholly different meaning. And, as I wrote above, 1939 is more than a year before Wannsee formally distributed tasks to those representatives of the Reich’s bureaucracy.
The Holocaust, if it’s meaning is not to be lost in the mists of time, folded into Tisha b’Av as ritual on the Jewish calendar by future generations, must be recognized for what it is. The Holocaust is what the Crusades would have sought had they the technology, the Spanish Inquisition redux. Both events of history targeted the Jews for torture and death. What they lacked was the means to efficiently and speedily achieve a full and final solution to the Jewish Problem. Mid-20th century technology provided the means to achieve that which was unattainable in the past, the full and complete eradication of Jewish existence from the world.
Had Hitler won the war, something which even Roosevelt and Churchill once considered possible, there should be no doubt that the assault on the Jews would not have stopped at the western shoreline of Europe. Hitler’s intention was to achieve a final solution to a Jewish Problem born two millennia before, with the first century Pauline and gospel texts.
Hitler wrote in Mein Kampf, and repeated often in speeches, “I believe to-day that my conduct is in accordance with the will of the Almighty Creator. In standing guard against the Jew I am defending the handiwork of the Lord.”
Afterword: A long-standing debate exists between “schools of historians” over whether and when Hitler gave an order for the extermination of world Jewry. And if, as seems likely, no such written document exists, does that change anything? What if it turns out that the only evidence for a start date is the Wannsee Conference, does that become the default start date? And what of the one million Jews murdered before that date, in 1941? Common sense informs that wars commence long before actual military engagement.
Hitler began clandestinely rebuilding the Wehrmacht in 1933; he passed legislation disenfranchising the Jews that same year. Neither constitutes a declaration of war; yet both definitely represent led inexorably to that end. And while the Nuremburg Laws are a historical document, their appearance in 1933 was sufficiently ambiguous that even today it is open to multiple interpretations. And this is the problem academia created: insisting on a likely non-existent written order clouds the fact that the Holocaust, the murder of each and every living Jew, was Hitler’s intention from the start. The debate swings wide the door to the deniers of the Holocaust.
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