Question of Survival

1473 WordsApr 22, 20056 Pages
Question of Survival Jewish Resistance We must first realize that resistance was in no way a survival strategy. Yet, even when it seemed obvious that death was near inevitable, why did they not put up a fight? This argument is still puzzling to many holocaust historians, yet the arguments of Raul Hilberg and Yehuda Bauer offer insight to possible reasons why they did not fight and that resistance was more widespread than most people think. First of all we will look at Raul Hilberg 's "Two Thousand Years of Jewish Appeasement," to give us possible reasons why Jews simply willing followed orders to their death. We must see the destruction in a way that has two role-players: the perpetrators and the victims. We will closely look at the…show more content…
First we must understand that any defiance to Nazi law was punishable by death. With that said, resistance seems much more widespread under Bauers ' definition. Nazi leaders allowed the Judenrat to distribute food that delivered a mere 336 calories per day, on such a diet the inhabitants could live at most a couple of months. Knowing this they smuggled and produced more food to give people 1125 calories, which is more than three times the allowed amount, and many people still died from this amount. There were also non-violent resistance in the form of education and religion. There were laws banning education and public religion, yet groups met in soup kitchens or professors ' houses to work and pray together. Within the ghettos there were also armed resistance, but as with any resistance there were consequences. First of all, the Nazis ' held the community accountable for any forms of resistance. Bauer uses an example of two boys who were seen leaving the ghetto and were able to hide and reach safety. The Nazis ' demanded the return of the two boys or the ghetto inhabitants would be killed. They did not return and the next day the entire ghetto was shot. Although this was a powerful tool the Nazis ' used in deferring resistance, the family responsibility was also a large deterrent. In joining a resistance force meant that you must disassociate yourself from your family in every way. The feeling of abandoning
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