The Holocaust was the systematic, bureaucratic, state-sponsored persecution and murder of approximately six million Jews by the Nazi regime and its collaborators. The worldwide Jewish population at the time was ~15 million. Including 90% of the Jews of Poland And a majority of the Jews in all the countries conquered by Germany. “Holocaust” is a word of Greek origin meaning “sacrifice by fire.” Elie Wisel used the word to describe the Nazi genocide of the Jews. The Nazis, who came to power in Germany in January 1933, believed that Germans were “racially superior” Jews were deemed “inferior,” and were an alien threat to the so-called German racial community. During the era of the Holocaust, German authorities also targeted other groups because of their perceived “racial inferiority”: The Roma (Gypsies), the disabled, and some of the Slavic peoples Poles, Russians, and others. Other groups were persecuted on political, ideological, and behavioral grounds, among them Communists, Socialists, Jehovah’s Witnesses, and homosexuals, but the Jews suffered the greatest brutalities and the greatest population loss.
Fredericton has two members of the Jewish community who have had their memoirs of the Holocaust published, Eta Berk (The Chosen) and Dr. Israel Unger (The Unwritten Diary of Israel Unger.)
Sgoolai Israel Synagogue holds an annual commemoration of the Holocaust. For more information on this event contact Israel Unger.
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