Nazism is a fascist ideology promulgated by the practices of the Nazi Party in Nazi Germany. This ideology is a pure form of fascism that is repulsed by liberal democracy and the parliamentary system. Nazism includes extreme anti-Semitism, anti-communism and the use of science to justify racism. The extreme nationalism aspect of Nazism sprung from the Völkisch movement which played a major role in promoting German nationalism since the late 19th century. It takes refuge in pseudo-scientific ideas and theories of a racial hierarchy falsely marking the Germans as a part of what the Nazis considered the superior Aryan race. Its purpose was to dismantle the social divisions and give rise to a homogeneous German society based on racial purity which was represented as the people’s community (Volksgemeinschaft). This ideology aimed to unify all Germans and exclude those whom they looked down on as the “inferior” races. This ideology was further popularized by Adolf Hitler.
Adolf Hitler was a German politician who has been the dictator of Germany from 1933 until his death by suicide in 1945. He gained power as the leader of the Nazi Party, becoming the chancellor in 1933. Furthermore, he assumed the title of Führer und Reichskanzler (leader or guide) in 1934. He supervised military operations and played an extremely central role during the implementation of the Holocaust which characterized the genocide of about 6 million Jews and millions of other victims.
Based on the ideology of the superiority of race, the Nazis set out to wipe out entire generations of people below military the races they considered as inferior. It gave rise to violence and crimes of racial nature which came to be known as the Nazi genocide or the Nazi crime. Nazi crime is an inhumane concept or a heinous action that was tried out, inspired or encouraged by the administration of Nazi Germany (1933–1945). The genocidal war crimes against Jews by the patrons of Nazism are considered a crime against humanity, including other persecutions of people of different backgrounds because of their membership in a particular national, political, social, ethnic or religious group, which is different from theirs. Nazi crimes were also blatantly perpetrated against Communists, homosexuals, Roma, Sinti, socialists, Poles and other Slavs, and Soviet prisoners, among a few.
The violence against people of different races, especially Jews, during the Holocaust was physical as well as had other dehumanising aspects to the crimes about the ego and supremacy of the nazi regime. It is estimated that in Ukraine, 400,000 Jewish people were mass murdered in Nazi concentration camps as the Holocaust continued. About 1,864 Jewish people were killed per day, on average, as these estimates suggest. Moreover, the people who died during the holocaust weren’t buried properly either. Five or more Jewish people at a time were forced to walk over to mass pits and were shot in the back. 5,000 Jews in Ukraine was killed in this way. Children and some people were directly pushed into the pits or into the fire, to save the cost of bullets. The rampant genocide was in practice. These criminal assaults on innocent and helpless victims were also done through beating, drowning, whipping, running over, strangling and gassing. It also encompassed violence against women like sexual crimes or crimes which targeted women’s sexual organs. Another widely used technique of the Nazis was to murder people who euthanize them, as opposed to the harm principle.
The genocide and physical crimes were not the only crimes that were committed, the crimes were all-pervasive. The Nazis were said to commission different crimes including property crimes as well, against different classes. The possessions and incomes of Jews were seized to make it even harder for them to survive, just before the Holocaust. The Nazis labelled the victims of the holocausts endangering public safety. Auschwitz was the central Nazi camp between 1940-1945; where at least 10,000 prisoners of war were killed, including gipsies and gays along with Jews who were killed at the concentration camp. Prisoners sometimes got shot at randomly as the Nazis made sense of it by “killing whoever got in the way”. Many people would do what the Nazi soldiers ordered them to do to keep their families alive. Most of the people who once entered the Nazi concentration camps could not survive.
Citing from the Nuremberg Trials, after World War II was over, Nazis were charged with many crimes and had to appear in endless court hearings. Amendments and alterations were made by the Allies in the Control Council Law 10. The changes asked the Allies to deal with the Nazi crimes of “war crimes, conspiracy to commit war crimes, crimes against peace, and crimes against humanity”.
Even after 73 years of the fall of the Nazi regime, we see the consequences of the terror that the Nazis spread. Anti-Semitism which became a prevailing hatred in the era of Hitler is prevalent in the world today as well. Moreover, we see many political leaders ruling with a fascist ideology in their state, borrowing supremacy techniques right from Hitler’s playbook. In the world of today, we see extremist ideologies often driven by adherence to rightist doctrine or hegemony of a particular majority ethnic and ethnoreligious group. This kind of extremism is inspired by Nazism in one way or another. It began in 1933 with Adolf Hitler and the genocidal Nazi Party wherein they pursued this racist ideology that restructured the entire world along racial lines and its long shadows continue to impact us even today.
1. Fascism: It is a form of far-right, authoritarianism structured and characterized by dictatorial power, forcible suppression of opposition and strong regimentation of the society through military forces.
2. Anti Semitism: Anti-Semitism is hostility to, prejudice or offensive stereotype towards, and discrimination against Jews. A person who is guilty of doing acts of anti-Semitism is called an anti-Semite. An anti-Semitism is a form of racism as well.
3. Holocaust: Holocaust was the systematic genocide of European Jews during World War II. Between 1941 and 1945, Nazi Germany and its combined forces murdered some six million Jews across German-occupied Europe, which was about two-thirds of Europe’s Jewish population.
4. Genocide: Genocide is an internationally recognized crime where crimes are committed with the intent to destroy a national, ethnic, racial, or religious group, through mass killings or mental harm to the population.
5. Euthanize: Euthanize means to painlessly put a person or an animal to death.
6. Nuremberg Trials: The Nuremberg trials were a series of military tribunals held following World War II by the Allied forces under international law and the laws of war. The trials are most notable for the prosecution of prominent members of the Nazi party.
7. Allies: The Allies were an international military coalition formed during the Second World War (1939–1945) to oppose the Axis powers (Germany, Italy and Japan).
8. Ideology: a set of ideas or mindsets which form the basis for a political or economic system and its governing body.
9. Hegemony: Control by one state or organization over other states or within a particular group.
10. Control Council Law 10: Atrocities or offences against persons or property, constituting violations of the laws or customs of war.