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Germany in WW2
Judaism

Was it only Jews that got killed during the final solution?

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December 06, 2008 7:25PM

Simple answer: Yes, since you used the term "Final Solution" in your question.

The full term is: "The Final Solution to the Jewish Question." It's not clear exactly when this term was coined or by whom (some scholars credit Adolf Eichmann, at the Wannsee Conference in January 1942), but during what is generally termed "The Holocaust," the period from approximately November 9-10, 1938 (Kristallnacht, or the Night of Broken Glass) to the end of World War 2 in Europe in May of 1945, approximately 6 million European Jews were deliberately murdered by the Nazi regime in Germany for the sole reason that they were of Jewish extraction.

As the German Army conquered territories after 1939, right behind them would come the Einsatzgruppen, special death squads of the SS whose task it was to find and kill, primarily Jews, and others deemed "undesirables" by the Nazi regime.

The question gets a little stickier when we try to put the terms "Final Solution" and "Holocaust" together. There is no doubt that "Final Solution" referred to the Jews alone, but scholars are mixed on whether "Holocaust" applies only to Jews, or includes the other approximately 5 million non-Jewish people murdered by the Nazis because they were ...

* Slavs (especially Soviet POWS) * Gypsies (Roma and Sinti) * Disabled and/or mentally ill * Homosexuals * Freemasons * Jehovah's Witnesses ... Or anyone else the Nazis thought they could define as Untermenschen (literally "undermen" or subhuman). Some scholars exclude non-Jews from the Holocaust, others include them, but the fact remains that the evidence shows that the Germans and some other Europeans under the Nazis made a concerted attempt to kill everyone they didn't like, starting and ending with, always above all, the Jews.