Switch headers Switch to TIGweb.org

Are you an TIG Member?
Click here to switch to TIGweb.org

HomeHomeExpress YourselfPanoramaLESSONS FROM THE HOLOCUAST
a TakingITGlobal online publication

(Advanced Search)

Panorama Home
Issue Archive
Current Issue
Next Issue
Featured Writer
TIG Magazine
Short Story
My Content
by Lucky Musonda, Zambia Jan 20, 2007
Human Rights   Opinions
 1 2   Next page »


By Musonda Lucky (YUNA-Zambia Secretary General)

Out of curiosity, one would wonder what really the term holocaust means; the New Lexicon Webster’s Dictionary of the English Language (1989) defines Holocaust as a large-scale sacrifice or destruction, especially of life, especially by fire. However, this word, in modern society does not only refer to the destruction of life by fire. The origin of the word holocaust is mostly identified with the fate the Jews faced at the hands of the Nazi regime of Adolf Hitler during the Second World War. The holocaust was the murder of approximately six million Jews by the Nazis and their collaborators. Between the German invasion of the Soviet Union in the summer of 1941 and the end of the war in Europe in May 1945, Nazi German and its accomplices strove to murder every Jew under their domination. Because Nazi discrimination began with Hitler’s accession to power in January 1933, many historians consider this to be the start of the holocaust. The Jews were not the only victims of Hitler’s regime, but they were the only group that the Nazis sought to destroy entirely.

When Hitler was appointed Chancellor of German on 30th January, 1933, by President Hindenburg, he attained power in very little time, which used to broaden his base of power and dismantle the democratic constitution piece by piece. A crucial landmark was the so-called Law of Empowerment, which authorized the government to enact laws without recourse either to the parliament or to the president. The Nazi seized of power was completed with in a sense, with the Law against the Establishment of New Parties on July 14th 1933, by dint of which the Nazi party became the only legal political party in German. After a series of other ‘decrees’ the rights of Jews were being stripped off them slowly day by day.

One would wonder why the Nazi’s murdered the Jews (why were the Jews the only target? Many answers to this question have been offered- theological, historical, philosophical, psychological and Marxist-but none alone will ever be satisfactory. The answer might be read like this: in the 1930s large segments of the German populace consented to live in a society based on the tenets of hatred, ethnic Utopians, and violence. They went to war to redress every wrong and perceived wrong perpetrated against them over the previous 200years, and to create their version of a better world. A central belief in the system by which they lived was that the Jews (or “The Jew”) represented everything diametrically opposed to them and, for this reason, had to be removed. This belief was closely connected to a racial worldview, shared by many, which defined the Germans as members of the master race-the Nordic Aryans-and Jews as an “anti”-race befouled by destructive physical characteristics. The utopia toward which these Germans strove would be unattainable if the Jews remained. When the geographical removal of the Jews proved unfeasible, they resorted to the most radical of solutions: a Final solution. This led to the killing of Jews in Ghettos, extermination camps run by the SS. Other units that were involved in the killing were the Einsatzgruppen, Police formations and groups such as construction crews and musicians, using gas vans, gas chambers, concentration camps, and physically (by way of fighting or torturing).


From the information given, we now know that the Jews were killed all because they were Jews. It is something that makes us wonder; why should being what you are be a crime? The Jews committed a crime because they were born Jews. Over 60 years down the line society is still hearing of this group rising against another. So many lives have been lost because certain sections of society could not get along with others. Africa has had several events similar to and also referred as holocausts. The Rwandan genocide case, the apartheid is South Africa; the civil war in Congo DR, the list goes on. All these cases of atrocities have been repeated in different parts of today’s world with very little learned from them.

Much of the root cause of these events in Africa and around the world has been traced in man’s greed and selfishness. Whenever people have been left out on most of the opportunities or when they feel marginalized, the lack an audience and the end result is using the most unconventional methods of airing their grievances. On the other hand, people have just thought of themselves to be very superior to others and so have taken advantage of this and passed laws and ‘decrees’ that only favour them.

Here in Zambia, there is need to appreciate the fact that the many civil wars which have been recorded in many countries of the worlds some of which are our neighbours can befall us if we do not respect each others dignity. Being different does not mean one deserves different treatment. It is not wrong to be different, but certainly it is to be treated differently. Seventy-two tribes (or the many languages) that this country should all be seen to be as equal as any other though some may be more popular than others. The moment we start asking each other questions like where do you come from? We are inciting a cold war within ourselves. We need not look at where we come from , but who we all are-Zambians.

 1 2   Next page »   


You must be logged in to add tags.

Writer Profile
Lucky Musonda

This user has not written anything in his panorama profile yet.
You must be a TakingITGlobal member to post a comment. Sign up for free or login.