The most notable fact about the Holocaust is that more than 11 million people were killed. Out of the 11 million recorded deaths, six million were Jews. The Holocaust also claimed the lives of more than 1.1 million children.
Apart from Jews, the Nazis also wanted to eliminate homosexuals, the disabled, Jehovah’s Witnesses and Gypsies. The word “Holocaust” was derived from the Greek word “holokauston” which translates to “sacrifice by fire.”
The Nuremberg Laws were established to segregate Jews from the public. The laws also banned marriages between Germans and Jews. Nazis announced a nationwide boycott against businesses run by Jews on April 1, 1933. The Nazis then banned Jews from appearing at public parks.
Jews were also fired from government jobs. Jewish doctors were not allowed to treat other patients apart from their fellow Jews.
When World War II commenced, Jews were ordered by Nazis to put on a yellow Star of David on their clothing for easier identification and targeting. Dachau was the first concentration camp. It was opened on March 20, 1933. There were a total of six extermination camps: Chelmno, Sobibor, Belzec, Treblinka, Majdanek and Auschwitz. The largest extermination camp during the Holocaust was Auschwitz where more than 1.1 million people died.
Prisoners were often ordered to undress to take a shower but instead, they were directed into underground gas chambers for extermination. The main difference between extermination and concentration camps during the Holocaust was that the former were built to quickly kill the victims, while the latter were designed to overwork them to death after starvation.