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WHY WERE THE JEWS SINGLED OUT FOR EXTERMINATION?

The basis for Nazi antisemitism—prejudice against or hatred of Jewish people—was the Nazis’ distorted worldview of human history as racial struggle. The Nazis falsely considered the Jews to be a race. They incorrectly believed Jews had a natural impulse, inherited through generations, to strive for world domination, and that this goal would not only prevent German dominance but would also enslave and destroy the German “race.” The Nazis believed that all of history was a fight between races, which would culminate either in the triumph of the superior “Aryan” race or in its total extinction. As a result, Nazi leaders considered the death of all Jews to be a precondition necessary for the survival and the eventual dominance of the so-called “German-Aryan” race. According to the Nazis, the Jews, as an “inferior” race, would use their supposed control of world finances and of world mass media to support Communist uprisings and to encourage other “inferior” races to overwhelm and triumph against Nordic-Germanic races.

Nazi antisemitism linked traditional negative and false images of Jews and their behavior with modern pseudo-scientific beliefs. Among these stereotypes were those derived from centuries-old Christian anti-Jewish thinking, which incorrectly presented Jews as murderers of Christ, agents of the devil, and practitioners of witchcraft. The Nazis linked these negative stereotypes to a “Jewish way of thinking” that they believed was based in genetics and, therefore, not subject to change. The Nazis used this belief to justify the discrimination, persecution, and, eventually, physical murder of Jewish people.

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Originally posted 2017-12-17 21:31:21.