The Night Of Broken Glass

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On the night of November 9, 1938, violence against Jews broke out across the Reich. It appeared to be unplanned, set off by Germans' anger over the assassination of a German official in Paris at the hands of a Jewish teenager. During the Holocaust, six million Jews were murdered while others were thrown out of their homes with nowhere to go, hundreds became homeless and sick. One of the most significant events that took place during this time is called Kristallnacht. This is better known as, "the night of broken glass". Many people thought this event triggered the Holocaust to begin. Kristallnacht occurred on the nights of November 9th and 10th in 1938. As we now look back we realize that these unforgettable night are one of the most embarrassing and horrific moments in German and Jewish history. The people that are most affected are the survivors. Kristallnacht was a Nazi street riot where streets were littered with broken glass. It was presented by the Nazi regime as a spontaneous public outburst provoked by the assassination of a minor German diplomat in Paris, Ernst vom Rath, by a seventeen-year-old Polish Jew, Herschel Grynszpan. The pogrom's name comes from the German word for beveled plate glass (Kristallglas) and refers to the broken shop windows of the Jewish stores, hence Kristallnacht, or Night of the Broken Glass. Mass destruction broke out across Germany: synagogues were destroyed and burned, shop windows were broken and stores looted, Jewish homes were invaded and household furnishing stolen or destroyed, and Jewish people were physically assaulted, sometimes even raped and murdered, and arrested. 5,000 Jewish shops were wrecked, and all but one of the city’s 21 synagogues were burnt down. The significance of Kristallnacht lay in the reaction of the Nazi regime to intense and vocal criticism from abroad, which reacted to the pogrom with horror and
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