Holocaust vs. Native American Genocide Essay

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The term genocide brings awful things to mind. For most, it probably directs their attention towards the Holocaust; this was definitely a gruesome and obvious example of genocide, but there are many others with great similarities that are not very well known. One of these is the decimation of the Native American population by the European settlers and the atrocious things that were done to them such as the trail of tears following the Indian Removal Act of 1830 during the settling of North America. The Holocaust might be the most well known but there have been many other incidents in history just as abhorrent. The Holocaust and Native American Genocide are different in weapons used and the motives for killing but similar in intent, …show more content…
The Nazis justified their killing through survival. To the Nazis, as a superior race they had the right to dominate the world, and their survival and lives as individuals were far more important than the people they persecuted. They believed they had the right to expand to cover the globe and to kill everyone who interfered with this mass expansion. They also believed that the natural order of nature required them to assert their dominance, that as the dominant race it was their job to do this, and that it was also nature’s intention (“Victims”). On the other hand, the European settlers justified the killing of the Native Americans as noncompliance. They believed that they had right to the land of North America, since it was only occupied and not colonized. On top of this, the natives were primarily nomadic tribes and did not live in the same area year-round (”Settlement”). In their quest for land, the settlers told the natives they were to move west; when the natives did not obey, they were made to do so by force. These Native Americans were sometimes coerced into leaving their lands through murder and biological warfare by the settlers (“Lewy”). The settlers, however, did not believe the murder of the native people was ultimately necessary. They even set aside tracts of land in which the lives of the American Indians would not be interfered if they complied. They also traded with natives regularly and were greatly assisted