How many Jews were there in Europe before WW2 and after?

Question by koko99: How many Jews were there in Europe before WW2 and after?

Best answer:

Answer by CallMeMikeDexter,Please
Pre-World War II, there were likely about 8-9 million Jews in Europe–Russia included. Most of these Jewish communities that were decimated existed in what we know as Eastern Europe: Poland, Ukraine, Romania, Hungary and Lithuania. However, there were vibrant Jewish communities in Austria and Czechoslovakia and even France and Greece. Germany, before World War II, had a Jewish population of somewhere around 50,000 people, which begs the question why, in a nation of 60+million people, Germans would have been so fixated on this fabricated Jewish threat. Many Jews from Eastern Europe were the first emigrees to Israel before and after the war. From there, Arab Jews and Jews from Western Europe followed. Russian Jews have made up a big portion of Israel’s population.

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One thought on “How many Jews were there in Europe before WW2 and after?”

  1. Zionism and emigration from Europe
    Many of the newly secular Jews who had embraced Haskalah found themselves deeply troubled by the continuing virulent anti-semitism of the late 1800s, especially the massive pogroms of the 1880s in Russia and the Dreyfus Affair, which occurred in France in 1894, a country many Jews had previously thought of as particularly accepting. Many Jews in Eastern Europe embraced socialism as a potential escape from persecution, but another group, the Zionists, led by Theodor Herzl, viewed the only solution as the creation of a Jewish state. The interplay between Jewish national and religious identities was evident in Zionism, which was initially an entirely secular movement, but drew inspiration and support from the religious connection between Jews and the Land of Israel. Zionism contributed to the growth of the Jewish population there, which at the time was the Palestine province of the Ottoman Empire, and later the British Mandate of Palestine. Zionism, initially one out of a number of competing Jewish political movements, gained nearly universal support from the world Jewish population following the near-complete destruction of the Jews of Europe in the Holocaust, and led to the foundation of the State of Israel.

    In addition to responding politically, during the late 19th century, Jews began to flee the persecutions of Eastern Europe in large numbers, mostly by heading to the United States, but also to Canada and Western Europe. By 1924, almost two million Jews had emigrated to the US alone, creating a large community in a nation relatively free of the persecutions of rising European anti-Semitism (see History of the Jews in the United States).

    The Holocaust
    Main article: The Holocaust
    This anti-Semitism reached its most destructive form in the policies of Nazi Germany, which made the destruction of the Jews a priority, culminating in the killing of approximately six million Jews during the Holocaust from 1941 to 1945. Originally, the Nazis used death squads, the Einsatzgruppen, to conduct massive open-air killings of Jews in territory they conquered. By 1942, the Nazi leadership decided to implement the Final Solution, the genocide of the Jews of Europe, and to increase the pace of the Holocaust by establishing extermination camps specifically to kill Jews. This was an industrial method of genocide. Millions of Jews who had been confined to diseased and massively overcrowded Ghettos were transported (often by train) to “Death-camps” where some were herded into a specific location (often a gas chamber), then either gassed or shot. Afterwards, their remains were buried or burned. Others were interned in the camps where they were given little food and disease was common. Many Jews tried to escape Europe before or during the Holocaust, but were unable to find refuge, giving new urgency to the Zionist goal of establishing a Jewish homeland.

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