What is The Night of Broken Glass? – Learn the causes and consequences of the night of broken glass
The Night of Broken Glass, also known as Kristallnacht in German, was a violent persecution and attack against the Jewish community in Germany and Austria in 1938, organized by the Nazi government and its paramilitary forces.
What happened the night of the broken glass?
This event occurred on November 9 and 10, 1938 in Germany and Austria. It was a violent episode that marked the beginning of the massive persecution of Jews by the Nazi regime led by Adolf Hitler.
During that night, Nazi paramilitary SA and SS forces, as well as German civilians, they ransacked and looted shops, Jewish homes and synagogues. An estimated 7,500 Jewish shops and businesses were destroyed, as well as more than 1,000 temples. In addition, around 100 people died and thousands were arrested and sent to concentration camps.
The Nazi nation justified the violence as a response to the assassination of German diplomat Ernst vom Rath in Paris by a young Jewish man, Herschel Grynszpan, but it was actually a pretext in order to intensify the persecution of Jews in Germany and Austria.
The Night of Broken Glass marked a turning point in Nazi policy towards the Jews, moving from legal discrimination to physical violence and mass deportation to concentration and extermination camps during the Holocaust. This event is considered one of the darkest moments in German history and a reminder of the dangers of extremism and intolerance.
What are the causes of the night of broken glass?
your reasons were a set of factors that had been accumulating since the Nazi Party came to power in 1933. First, the ideology was based on a belief in racial superiority and the need to purify the German nation of ‘undesirable’ elements, including Jews. This led to the enactment of discriminatory laws and policies that limited the rights of Jews and socially marginalized them.
In second place, the german economy was in crisis in the 1930s, with high unemployment rates and galloping inflation. The Nazi government sought culprits for the situation and the Jews were singled out as scapegoats.
Third, the Night of Broken Glass occurred shortly after the assassination of an official in Paris by a young Jewish man named Herschel Grynszpan. The Nazi government took advantage of this event as a pretext to carry out a coordinated action against the Jewish population.
Finally, the Night of Broken Glass talso resulted from tensions within the Nazi government, where radical groups, such as the SA led by Ernst Röhm, vied for power and control. The action against the Jews allowed the Nazi leader, Adolf Hitler, to consolidate his position and eliminate his rivals.
What are the characteristics of the night of broken glass?
Being a significant and profound event in Jewish and German history, It has many features to highlight. Next, I describe some of the main characteristics of that event:
- Widespread violence: During that night, Germany carried out violent attacks on shops, Jewish homes and synagogues throughout the nation and Austria.
- Mass destruction of property: It is estimated that some 7,500 shops were destroyed and Jewish businesses, as well as more than 1,000 temples. Shattered glass from shop windows and destroyed synagogues gave the event its name.
- Deaths and arrests: About 100 people died during the attacks and thousands ended up imprisoned and sent to concentration camps.
- Government Coordination: Although the attack was started by Nazis and civilians, it was also there was a clear joint public management in the event. Which implied the approval and order of the regime led by Adolf Hitler.
- False justification: The government justified the violence by the assassination of the German diplomat Ernst vom Rath by a young Jew, Herschel Grynszpan. But in reality it was a pretext to intensify the harassment of Jews in Germany and Austria.
- Beginning of the massive persecution of the Jews: The Night of Broken Glass marked the beginning of the siege of the Jews by the Nazi regime. This morphed from legal discrimination to physical violence and mass deportation to concentration and extermination camps during the Holocaust.
Who participated in The Night of Broken Glass?
The SA (Sturmabteilung), a Nazi paramilitary organization, played a prominent role in the attacks, along with the SS (Schutzstaffel) and other Nazi paramilitary forces. In addition, many civilians participated in the violence, looting and destroying Jewish property.
Government he also influenced the coordination and planning of the attacks. Joseph Goebbels, the Nazi propaganda minister, organized a meeting of Nazi leaders on November 9, 1938 to discuss the reaction to the assassination of German diplomat Ernst vom Rath. Here, he decided to take advantage of the situation to intensify the persecution of the Jews in Germany and Austria.
Furthermore, the German police was ordered by the Nazi government not to intervene and allow attacks to occur without restraint.
What are the consequences of The Night of Broken Glass?
It had serious consequences for both the Jews and the rest of the world. Next, I present to you what the repercussions were:
- Deaths and detention of Jews: Around 100 people were killed during the attacks and thousands were arrested and sent to concentration camps.
- Property loss: An estimated 7,500 Jewish shops and businesses were destroyed, as well as more than 1,000 synagogues. Many Jews lost their homes, businesses, and property.
- Worsening situation for Jews: The Night of Broken Glass marked the beginning of the massive persecution of Jews by the Nazi regime. This went from legal discrimination to physical violence and the mass deportation to concentration and extermination camps during the Holocaust.
- Rising anti-Semitism: The Night of Broken Glass intensified racism towards Jews in Germany and around the world, as news of the attacks and destruction of property and human lives they got everywhere.
- International condemnation: The global community did not approve of the attacks, which led to further political isolation of Germany and the start of World War II.