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The Third ReichClass Lecture Introduction The Third Reich refers to Germany in the yearsof 1933 to 1945 when it was governed by the.Nazi Party National Socialist German Workers Party with Adolf Hitler as head of state The foreign policy pursued by Nazi Germany based on the concept of Lebensraum livingspace was among the leading causes of the.Second World War Land Area In addition to Weimar era Germany proper theReich came to include the following areas 1 Austria.2 Czechoslovakia3 Alsace Lorraine5 All German speaking regions of Europe Danzig Luxembourg The Sudetenland Moravia Bohemia and Upper Silesia . The Schutzstaffel The S S The policies of Hitler and the Third Reich were enforcedby the Schutzstaffel The S S The SS was established in 1925 as a personal guard unitfor Nazi leader Adolf Hitler . Under the leadership of Heinrich Himmler between 1929and 1945 the SS grew from a small paramilitaryformation to become one of the largest and mostpowerful organizations in Nazi Germany The Nazis regarded the SS as an elite unit the party s. Praetorian Guard with all SS personnel selected onthe principles of racial purity and unconditional loyalty tothe Nazi Party Nazi Ideology Ideologically the Nazis endorsed the.concept of a Greater Germany They believed that the incorporation of theGermanic people into one nation was avital step towards their national success According to the Lebensraum Program .the occupation of Eastern Europe wasnecessary because Germany neededadditional living space Nazi Ideology The Slavic population who met the Nazi racial.standard would be absorbed into the Reich Those not fitting the racial standards were to beused as cheap labor force or deported eastward Racialism was an important aspect of societywithin the Third Reich . The Nazis combined anti Semitism with anti Communist ideology Nazi Social Policy The Nazi regime was characterized bypolitical control of every aspect of society.in a quest for racial Aryan Nordic socialand cultural purity Modern abstract art and avant garde artwas thrown out of museums and put onspecial display as degenerate art where.it was to be ridiculed Books were burnedthroughout the Reich Nazi Social Policy The Nazi Party pursued its aims throughpersecution and killing of those considered. impure especially targeting minority groupssuch as Jews Gypsies Jehovah s Witnesses and homosexuals Under the Nuremberg Laws passed in 1935 Jews were stripped of their German citizenship.and denied government employment The Nazis also undertook programs targeting weak or unfit people such as the T 4Euthanasia Program Nazi Social Policy. Under the T 4 program tens of thousands ofdisabled and sick Germans were killed in aneffort to maintain the purity of the GermanMaster race The techniques of mass killing developed in.these efforts would later be used in theHolocaust Under a law passed in 1933 the Nazi regimecarried out the compulsory sterilization of over400 000 individuals labeled as having hereditary.defects ranging from mental illness toalcoholism Nazi Social Policy Another component of the Nazi program of creatingracial purity was the Lebensborn or Fountain of Life .program founded in 1936 The program was aimed at encouraging Germansoldiers mainly members of the SS to reproduce This included offering SS families support services including the adoption of racially pure children into.suitable SS families The government housed racially valuable women pregnant with SS men s children in care homes inGermany and throughout occupied Europe Lebensborn also expanded to encompass the placing of.racially pure children forcibly seized from occupiedcountries such as Poland with German families Nazi Social Policy The Holocaust The persecution of minorities and undesirables continued both in Germany and the occupied.countries From 1941 onward Jews were required to weara yellow badge in public and most weretransferred to ghettos where they remainedisolated from the rest of the population . In January 1942 at the Wannsee Conferenceand under the supervision of Reinhard Heydrich and Heinrich Himmler a plan for the FinalSolution of the Jewish Question in Europe was Nazi Social Policy The Holocaust. From then until the end of the war some sixmillion Jews and many others includinghomosexuals Slavs and political prisoners were systematically killed In addition more than ten million people were.put into forced labor This genocide is called theHolocaust in English and the Shoah in Hebrew Thousands were shipped daily to exterminationcamps and concentration camps Some concentration camps were originally.detention centers but later converted into deathcamps for the purpose of killing of their inmates Nazi Social Policy The Holocaust Another distinctive feature was the use of humansubjects in medical experiments . German physicians carried out such experiments atAuschwitz Dachau Buchenwald Ravensbr ck Sachsenhausen Sobib r Treblinka and Natzweilerconcentration death camps The most notorious of these physicians was Dr Josef.Mengele who worked in Auschwitz His experiments included placing subjects in pressurechambers testing drugs on them freezing them attempting to change eye color by injecting chemicalsinto children s eyes and various amputations and other.brutal surgeries Nazi Social Policy The Holocaust The full extent of his work will never be knownbecause the two truckloads of records he sent tothe Kaiser Wilhelm Institute were destroyed by.Dr Otmar von Verschuer Subjects who survived Mengele s experimentswere almost always killed and dissected afterthe experiments He seemed particularly keen on working with.Romani children He would bring them sweetsand toys and would personally take them to thegas chamber Victims KilledSoviet POWs 2 3 million.Political Enemies 1 1 5 millionNon Jewish Poles 200 000 Roma Gypsies 220 000 500 000Freemasons 80 200 000Disabled 75 000 250 000.Gay men 5 000 15 000Jehovah s Witnesses 2 500 5 000Nazi Social Policy: The Holocaust Another distinctive feature was the use of human subjects in medical experiments. German physicians carried out such experiments at Auschwitz, Dachau, Buchenwald, RavensbrÃ¼ck, Sachsenhausen, SobibÃ³r, Treblinka, and Natzweiler concentration & death camps.