1. What is the ‘final solution’? How did it differ from what the Hitler Youth envisioned it to be?

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1. What is the ‘final solution’? How did it differ from what the Hitler Youth envisioned it to be?

The ‘Final Solution’ is Jewish genocide. The removal of all Jews through extermination. The Death Camps were designed as a means to accomplish mass murder. The Hitler Youth thought Jews were being sent to Concentration Camps for forced labor, to work for the Reich. (pg. 53-55)

2. What evidence is provided in Chapter 7 that indicates that Hitler was NOT a great military strategist?

Besides his failure to invade Britain because of a change of targets, Hitler also insists on attacking Russia. Previously he had signed a nonviolence pact with Russia, which he broke by invading. Also Hitler, again, switches Targets from the militaristic target of Moscow (Capital) to Stalingrad.

3. Why did the Russian invasion plan fail?

Hitler changed the target from Moscow to Stalingrad. His troops did not receive the supplies and support they needed to be successful.

4. What were the stipulations (conditions) of the “Night and Fog Decree?

Jewish persons were targeted to ‘disappear’ in the middle of the night, as if they got lost in the night and fog. No one knew where they were or what happened to them.

5. How did the Germans react to the news that the United States was entering WWII after the bombing of Pearl Harbor?

Most Germans, and particularly the Nazis, were not concerned about US involvement. They assumed the US would have their hands full dealing with Japan. They couldn’t fight on two fronts: in Europe and the South Pacific.

6. How did Alfons Heck feel about the German Luftwaffe? Describe his emotions and actions in detail.

Alfons was not excited about his offer to join the Luftwaffe. He was afraid of heights. Upon talking to his Hitler Youth leader, he was advised to join because it was the highest honor a soldier could have: being a part of the air force. After Alfons’ first flight, he was hooked and knew he would never be a priest, but a pilot. (pg. 72-75)

7. Why was Hitler outraged during the winter of 1943?

Hitler was outraged at Field Marshall Friedrich von Paulus’ surrender at Stalingrad. Hitler would rather his army be killed than suffer a surrender. He wrote off the remainder of the army in Russia and left them to die.

8. What specifically happened to the Nazi army in North Africa? Who was the Nazi general in charge?

The Nazi army suffered a loss of 38,000 men through battle, injury, or being lost in the Sahara Desert. General Erwin Rommel (the Desert Fox) was defeated by British Field Marshall Bernard Montgomery in late October 1942 at the Battle of El Alamein. (pg. 76)

9. Why did Alfons remain optimistic despite the fact that the Allies were beginning to make significant progress?

Primarily, Alfons was caught up in the fervor of the Hitler Youth, they believed so strongly in German world power, that no setback could have stopped their ultimate victory. Also, Alfons had just been promoted to Scharführer, a leader of 50 men.

10. In what ways did the Nazis get the Jews to mistrust and hate one another?

While Jews were living in the Ghettos, any ghetto with 10,000 or more Jews were appointed a judenrat, a council made up of Jews. The judenrat was to keep track of the Jews in that ghetto. They also were given lists of Jews who were to be deported to concentration camps. If you were connected to the Jews on the judenrat your name was kept off the list (for a season). Because of the favor granted the Council Members, Jews began mistrusting and hating each other as further favor was given to some but not others.

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