Home Contact Us
Index Purchase Info
About Site About Us
Appendices Credits
Further Reading Links
Special Features
By Keyword:

Page Number:
Click on an image to see a larger, more detailed picture.
1942: The "Final Solution"
 pg. 386 
Arms raised, a German tank officer surrenders to bayonet-ready soldiers of the British Eighth Army. The fierce battle in El Alamein, Egypt, was a turning point in the African campaign, as a rejuvenated Eighth Army, supplied with tanks from Britain and America, defeated the German Afrika Korps. For those in ghettos, the battle spelled hope of an eventual Allied victory over the Nazis and Fascists.
Photo: SYddeutscher Verlag Bilderdienst
An antisemitic cartoon features members of a Jewish athletic club marching behind a banner that reads, "Meisel Sport Ima Talmud Federation." Blatant symbology links Jews to Freemasons and Communists. Propaganda such as this was created to reinforce the notion that Jews constituted a race, or national entity, that was fundamentally distinct from Germans. Given the German love of sport and attachment to local clubs, imagery such as this resonated with the local populace.
Photo: Raphael Aronson / United States Holocaust Memorial Museum Photo Archive
The Coveted Ausweis

The Ausweis (identification card) meant the difference between life and death, between remaining in the ghetto and being deported to the concentration or death camps.

The card indicated that the bearer was employed and therefore not simply a "useless" Jew. At least temporarily, it granted a margin of safety to oneself and members of one's family, sometimes forcing the permit holder to make impossible choices about whom to include. Gaining a valid Ausweis was not easy since Nazi authorities frequently changed the color of the cards, requiring new ones. Gaining a card sometimes required bribing the Judenrat, which distributed them, especially as the Germans increasingly limited the number of work permits.

In Vilna in October 1941, the Germans reduced the number of cards to 3000, allowing only 12,000 of the ghetto's 27,000 Jews to be saved. In the end, the Nazi quest to exterminate all Jews left no piece of paper a guarantee of safety.

 November 2, 1942: Six thousand Jews are deported from Siemiatycze, Poland. Resistance is led by Herschl Shabbes.
 November 2, 1942: Wolfram Sievers, head of Germany's Ancestral Heritage Society, requests skeletons of 150 Jews. SS chief Heinrich Himmler okays a plan to establish a collection of Jewish skeletons and skulls at the Strasbourg Anatomical Institute in France, near the Natzweiler-Struthof concentration camp.
 November 2, 1942: Allied forces at El Alamein, Egypt, send German General Erwin Rommel's troops into full retreat.
 November 3, 1942: Jewish communities of Bilgoraj, Poland, and Ostryna, Belorussia, are destroyed at the Belzec and Auschwitz death camps, respectively.
1942: The "Final Solution"
 pg. 386 
The Holocaust Chronicle
© 2009 Publications International, Ltd.