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The Eugenics Movement | Brief History| Eugenics & 3rd Reich| Experiments |
|Marriage & Race Laws| Judenrein | The Aryan Experiment|

The Same Blood: Blueprint of the "Master Race"

I. The Eugenics Movement

* "Those of the same blood, belong to the same Reich."

  • A. A Brief History and Definition of the Eugenics Movement

  • Probably one of the most hideous aspects of the Third Reich was their notorious fascination and experimentation with Eugenics. Eugenics may be defined as "The study of hereditary improvement of the human race by controlled selective breeding."1 It is a science of applied Eugenics, negatively characterized by many because it it often used in the interest of racial "refinement" or in extreme cases, genocide. The general movement of Eugenics prospered from the late 1800s to the 1950s; there are still outspoken advocates. While the notions of 'pure-breeding' the human race has been around since the time of the Greek philosophers, the actual 'science'(or pseudo-science) of Eugenics has taken hold mostly in the last 100 years, as more accepted sciences such as Genetics and studies of "Individual Differences" and Psychometrics began to appear. Encarta sites the United States, England and Germany as the foremost nations in which the Eugenics Movement Developed.

    Philosophies

    Several philosophical underpinnings are important for the understanding of the rise of the Eugenics Movement. In the then newly developing area of Psychology, Sir Francis Galton in England became fascinated at patterns of optimal functioning (genius) running in families. At the time, most of the idea of inherited traits was speculative: measurements of individual differences such as hand-strength, height, weight, reaction-time, and so on , were the subject of exhibitions; one such exhibition appeared in the World Fair of 19xx. Galton collated great bodies of data tracing individual differences in prominent families in London as well as collecting and analyzing histories. His work greatly influenced also the growing interest of psychological measurement and studies of intelligence measures.3
    Darwin around the turn of the century influenced the development not only of the emerging social sciences but also the emerging concepts in Eugenics. Most have heard of the "survival of the fittest" or natural selection theories of Darwin, in which he believe according to evolutionary patterns, over the course of human history, the most fit individuals and hence traits would survive and prevail over the weaker, leading in course to a more fit and able person, presumably ending in a perfected homo sapien. He also developed the concept of the GAS: General Adaptation Syndrome; in which this evolving perfection would suit itself progressively to the enviroment and social conditions. Inherent in his beliefs was the assumption that over time, man and the world would evolve in every level towards a more perfect state. Eugenics relied heavily on that process, hoping to hurry it along by genetically altering and selecting what were deemed more desireable4 traits. What many do not know, is that Darwin recanted much of what he had proposed near his death.5

    In Addition to Natural Selection and the Study of Individual Differences, a religious philosophy of the time was re-introduced after laying dormant since the early Christian era. It is believed to stem from gnostic writings6 The philosophy was called "Root-Race" Theory and was held by some occultists in Europe at the time, particularly Mme. Blavatsky and Theosophy.7 Root Race Theory held that there was originally a 'root-race' which was basically analogous to the Jews. They believed there was a superior race, descendants of the population of Atlantis, and that over time, the superior, Master Race of Aryans, those descendants, would be pre-eminent at first and then virtually populate the world which would in turn become a utopia. In order for this Master Race to succeed, the 'root-race' would need to either die out over time or be eliminated. This was to ensure the pure blood lines of these Atlantean "paragons." This theory along with nordic mythology of a superior nation of warriors was incorporated into a network of sinister philosophy which fueled the concept of Eugenics, or the breeding of the perfect human race. Other philosophies also contributed to the support of Eugenics, such as Nietzche's concept of the SuperMan: the ultimate in Human attributes and optimal functioning: this model became the forefront paradigm for Hitler's goals in human breeding. (see: Philosophies and Religious Beliefs of the Nazis)


  • B. The Eugenics Movement and the Third Reich

    The Third Reich did not announce publicly its more sinister beliefs and plans as they took over political control of Germany in the early 1930s. Goebbels, in his conference notes8 noted that "we will of course not mention Wotan", meaning Woden, the Norse Warrior God. (pg. xxx) The Nazis, especially the upper echelon such as Hitler, Himmler and Goebbels were keenly interested in the emerging field of Eugenics. They were training youth from the cradle in their new philosophies and goals with a strong emphasis on nordic traits, physique and physical fitness and procreation: German mothers were encouraged in a variety of ways to have many children. New icons of perfect aryan children were promoted in the culture of the time. Early in the Reich, doctors were recruited to the field of Eugenics: one of Hitler's more prominent doctors published research in Margaret Sanger's journal on Birth Control in the United States. By the time research and experimentation in Eugenics hit the Concentration Camps, it had already been well-developed. Volumes had been written and compiled on racial features and characteristics and the measurement thereof. Eugenics figured heavily in the facilitation of proposed replacement of the Aryan race and culture for others.

  • C. The Eugenics Movement in America

    The Eugenics Movement in America was more pronounced than many knew. Two persons figured heavily in the new field: Margaret Sanger, known for Birth Control, Women's Liberation and the founding of what was to become Planned Parenthood; and W.Davenport, a reknown Eugenicist and Zoologist. Davenport, a Harvard educated Scientist who taught at the University of Chicago, and headed the "Station for Experimental Evolution"1in New York, believed that biological Statistics could be applied to the Study of Inheritance. He proposed that certain moral traits were also subject to inheritance/genetic factors such that one could 'breed' moral traits into the human race. He was one of a number of scientists, who in the first part of the century argued heartily against immigration; redefining bigotry as science, believing that immigrants were largely genetically inferior. His ideology set the the tone for the emerging interest in Eugenics in this country.

    Equally or even more influential on popular culture was Margaret Sanger 1883-1966. Sanger is known as a crusader for contraceptive rights; but few know that her concern for contraception was based firmly on concern for racial control. Her early work in impoverished environments led her to the belief that 'genetically inferior' persons should have less children, and that centers for birth control should be 'wisely' placed in neighborhoods which were impoverished, which also frequently happened to be in minority settings. Her first major 'research' journal, Birth Control Review published articles and research by Eugenicists including a few published by one of Hitler's Eugenicists. 9 Few know of Sanger's concern with racial policies and control, but a careful perusal of authors and articles in these early journals demonstrate her concern with human engineering. She was later in life appointed honorary head of Planned Parenthood, the group which grew out of her original organization in the 1940s; the journal has continued as a research arm of Planned parenthood till this day, under a different name. These and other influences of Eugenics proponents in the United States were formidable contributing factors in the lobbying for isolationism and restricted immigration during World War II, hurting mostly Jewish persons wishing to escape the Shoah.

    II. The Genetically Unacceptable

  • A. The Jews

    Why were the Jewish people genetically unacceptable to the Nazis? The answer lies in the way the Third Reich viewed the Jews. Much of this has been discussed in other sections.(See "Judenrein") While many people throughout history have seen and defined the Jews as both a race and religion, the Nazis went to great links to define the Jews first as a race, with complex racial definitions R and secondarily as a religious and political threat.p The Nazis wanted to rid Europe of the Jews not just because of their religion and politics, but because they believed that the Jews were the modern day descendants of the Hebrews, a group they considered the "root-race". ( See Root Race Theory A Superior or Master Race would emerge and take over Europe and then the World when this 'root race' was eradicated, ushering in a Utopian period populated by a genetically superior people. That people, according to the belief of the Nazis was the Aryan Race, with strong Nordic characteristics, white, with blue and light-colored eyes and light-colored hair, with strong physiques. The upper-most decision makers believed that by eliminating the Jewish bloodlines of Europe and the other bloodlines of 'less-desireable' peoples, that within a generation or two, this perfect Aryan Race would emerge, and usher in the Third Millenium, the Third Reign, which Hitler would rule. Himmler even believed he was the re-carnation of Heinrich I, who reigned earlier in history in a similar matter. The plan to make Europe "Jew-free" Judenfrei or Judenrein was from the beginning: excuses and apologetics having to do with 'relocating' the Jews for economic reasons covered the true motivation of the upper echelon of the Third Reich. The aim was to annihilate even the remnant of Jewish blood (we would now say DNA) from the peoples of Europe.

  • B. The Polish

    the Jews were by far the most criminally treated in the Shoah, but the Poles were among the peoples seen as "less-desireable" than the Germans. For the most part, German-Polish marriages were not forbidden or outlowed as were Jewish liasons, which were seen as racial-defiling. The Poles however were seen as less intelligent, and less noble a people than the Germans, in part because of their tolerance for the Jews in Poland. While many Poles were in league with, or were Nazis, many also saw German occupation as a very intolerable condition. Polish citizens were among those relocated and deported to Auschwitz, and a number of Polish children who were not Jewish were the subject of the bizarre experiments of Mengele. Polish land once confiscated was seen as the manifest destiny for the accomplishment of "Lebensraum" or the brancing out of the German populace into the realm of Europe to reign and command resources.

  • C. The Mentally Retarded

    Even before the Jews were targeted by Hitler as genetically unacceptable, the developmentally delayed or 'mentally-retarded' citizens of Germany came under the bitter scrutiny of the Third Reich. Hitler had no no appreciation of the value of a human life for its own sake: the mentally unfit were seen as a flaw in the German bloodlines and an economic/social burden to the state. For this reason, early on, the Reich sought sterilization and euthanasia procedures in institutions which housed large numbers of what Hitler considered the 'unfit'. This was often done without the consent of families of the 'feeble-minded' as they were often called: parents and families would often receive a notice that their loved one had died a peaceful death, without explanation. They would often have to carry the costs of burial. With the mentally ill, the developmentally delayed were also the subjects of early experiments in mass murder, as the Nazis sought 'efficient' means of killing large numbers of persons with minimum problems. One of the first pamplets by Bishop Galen which the White Rose group at the University of Munich distributed, had to do with a protest and cry against the Reich's treatment of the mentally infirm. 10

  • D. The "Mentally Ill"

    The mentally-ill, while not slow in intelligence were also seen as genetically inferior to ideals for Hitler's Master Race. His scientists believed then as many believe now that "mental-illness' is a genetically predisposed condition, and that it can be bred in or out of the human condition. Others disagree vehemently to the nature of what we call "mental-illness", attributing much of it to social-adaptibility and developmental factors.11 Most of the deaths of the mentally ill took place earlier in the 'final solution' and were independent of racial factors.

  • E. Political and Philosophical Protestors

    Political Prisoners and Prisoners of Conscience are the only category here which were not really a 'genetic' category: but often their treatment was the same: they were forbidden procreation in order to breed out if possible even political/religious predispositions. They were not seen or handled in the same way the others were handled.

  • F. The Roma and Sinti ( Gypsies)

    the Roma and Sinti were European groups of peoples, often having roots in Hungarian and Slovak areas which are popularly called 'gypsies'. They were considered undesireable and targeted for eradication because of their perceived qualites of deceptiveness, instability and wanderings. They were considered of lesser intelligence and some even considered them 'evil'. Many Roma and Sinti were sent to the Killing Centers for extermination along with the Jews.

  • G. Mixed Race

    Mixed race marriages early on were seen as unacceptable and outlawed in Germany. Jews who dated or married aryans wee accused of 'racial-defilement' and were publicly humiliated, as were their mates. However, when Jewish spouses were arrested and deported and robbed of citizenship, their spouses most often were not and retained full citizenship rights.

  • H. The Religiously Unacceptable

    Again, while not considered a racial group to be expunged, the 'religiously-unacceptable' were often treated in the same manner, and were also sent to concentration camps and often executed. The most prevalent were Jehovah's Witnesses, Evangelical Christians, and what the Nazis called "Political" Catholics and Protestants. These persons were considered incorrigible because of their firm stands against Nazi policies and beliefs and because they seldom recanted their positions even under pressure. Freemasons were also watched carefully, but the Nazis also incorporated certain of their beliefs in their own. their inclusion here is not because they were a direct target of the Reich's Eugenics programs, but becuase their treatment was the same as those who were.

  • I. The Elderly

    The elderly were often targeted for euthanasia or extermination not because of bloodlines or defects but becuase of their lack of contribution in a utilitarian philosophy. Jewish elderly were sent often to Terezin which the Nazis tried to promote as a 'retirement community', but which in fact proved to be a disguised gateway to Auschwitz. In Hitler's progressive views of youth and vitality and a new Germany, the elderly of all racial backgrounds were denigrated as contributing little to the new Reich. They were among the first killed when deported to the killing centers because of their perceived burden.

  • J. People of 'Color'

    One would automatically assume that Hitler and the Nazis would see all non-Aryan people as genetically inferiour, and to a certain extent, this was true. All non-white, non-european peoples were seen as genetically inferior to the Nordic peoples. However, the Nazis views towards for example, the blacks or Indians, was more complex than one might think. Early in the war, the Nazis courted the Indians for thier anti-British sentiment: Goebbels encouraged comparisons between Hitler and Ghandi.12 There were very few persons of African descent in Europe, but the views of the Nazis on the persons of color were at once disparaging, and sometimes 'magical': they were seen as having a role in the move towards the replacement of the root-race with the Master Race.

  • K. Sexual Deviants

    Sexual deviants were seen as genetically and socially unacceptable, although this was a hypocritical position because it is now known that many of the upper-level Nazis were sexual deviants. This category included homosexuals, pedophiles and those with perversions. In Dachau, homosexuals were forced to wear pink triangles as badges to denote their reason for incarceration. Many have strongly speculated that Hitler and his cohort may have had a homosexual relationship, although this may have equally played in the removal and death of the many who is credited with the fierce countenance of the "Brown Shirt"s or SA. Often in a 'reaction-formation' or 'projection' mechanism, those behind the Third Reich at once condemned social deviants and at the same time participated in the deviancy in a perverse catharsis.

    III. Nazi Germany and the Eugenics Projects

    As mentioned previously, Germany, America and Britain were the three nations leading in fascination and experimentation with the pseudo-science of Eugenics in the first half of the 20th Century. While we tend to think only of Germany in this manner, the Eugenics programs flourished in this country, reaching even the legislature for avenues of acceptance. Many Eugenists on both continents believed that society and a nation could rid itself of human ills by 'breeding-out' genetically based unacceptable temperaments and behaviors: there was an underlying assumption than much criminal behavior had a genetic base. In this pre-cloning, pre-DNA era, the emphasis was on breeding: the principles of animal breeding were thought to be closely applicable to the breeding of humans as well. German scientists, in line with views on race began to search for viable means of establishing "clear" or "pure" Nordic/German/Aryan bloodlines. In addition to wishing to establish a perfect physical race, their spiritual beliefs intertwined to produce the concept of a genetically perfect, and intellectually superior people who would tke the reigns of Europe in the 3rd Reich (or Realm, or Millenium)

  • A. The Aryan Cause/Belief and the "SuperRace"

    The funding and focus on developing a science of "Eugenics" or human engineering increased immediately with the Nazis taking power in 1933. This was also a function of timing: American interest in Eugenics was at its apex also; it fit perfectly into early plans of Hitler to create a Europe free of Jewish citizens. This 'racial cleansing' was decided early. While some argued for years after the war that Hitler either did not know about the mass exterminations or that he had no direct decision-making role, nothing could be further from the truth. Early documents, speeches and writings of Adolf Hitler show clearly that he formulated plans early in his involvement in the Nazi party to eradicate the Jewish Race and begin 'Endlosung or final solution to the "Jewish Problem". For example:

    Hitler did not stop at the idea of eradicating Jews and Judaism from Europe. Once this "inferior race" was eradicated, a new Aryan race with Nordic characteristics (see above) would over a generation or two replace earlier inferior races. A master race concept is not new: the idea or concept appears in many cultures, and the description of the race usually fits the archetype of the racial group describing it. Hitler's concepts however went far deeper. He believed with many of his inner circle that the race that inhabited the Ancient possibly mythical city/civilization of Atlantis were a superior group of human beings excelling in every human attribute, physical and intellectual. This race disappeared with some cataclysmic event but certain descendants survived. The Nazis believed the German/nordic people called "aryans" were descendants from this super-race of people. They also believed that the races evolved from more primitive races, and a 'root-race' to more and more complex races. When the 'lower' races were erased, a utopia would evolve. Hitler, Himmler, Goebbels and others believed that a new Aryan Germany would take leadership in this era, over a unified Europe and then over a global society. Eugenics was the science which would aid in this process: people, like animals would be bred towards this aryan perfection: anomalies would be removed from the bloodlines. In Hitler's estimation, the Jews fouled the bloodlines and this purpose: if Jewish children could not be germanized they also would be killed. (Those few chosen for 'germanization' after their parents were deported were often those with aryan-looking phenotypes). Experiments in bring about that perfect bloodline included Lebensborn, the Medical Experiments of Mengele and others in the Killing centers including "Twin " Studies, basic research and the implementation of Racial Laws. Additionally men and women were separated in the Camps to avoid procreation, in the hopes of erasing Jewish birth rates. Forced abortions and outlawed Jewish pregnancies were also legislated in some areas. (See Ghettos

  • B. Early Laws in Germany

    Many laws were enacted when Hitler took the reigns of both Chancellor and President, giving him absolute dictatorial power of enactment and veto, meaning that no German legislation went into law without his approval, and that no law he wished enacted would fail. The early laws began to erase the rights of Jews (1933); The Nuremberg Laws (1935) erased Jewish Citizenship and access to due process and ownership, and various Race Laws, developed other concepts among which was 1)outlawing marriage between Aryans & Jews and 2)Limiting Jewish Procreation. ( See "Jewish Civil Liberties Timeline".)

    Marriage and Race Laws

    a belief in 'Social Darwinism' as well as the 'natural' kind, the Third Reich went to task with the German people to propigate the 'superior' German-aryan race whatever way possible. One of the first ways that Hitler promoted this cause was to give legal and tax benefits to couples marrying and bearing children. One such act, enacted shortly after he came to office in 1933, was to provide a loan to couples marrying who planned to bear children. This loan could be paid off at 25% per child, hence, with 4 children, the loan was forgiven. The promotion of the large German family was for a variety of reasons, including producing an upcoming generation totally raised in on 'fuhrer principles' and on the vision of the "New Reich". The promotion of the increase in propagation was reflected, in art, advertisement, media messages, literature and speeches of the hierarchy of the Reich.

    Corollary to the promotion of the 'pure-aryan' family; was the push legally and medically to make Germany and then Europe Jew-free. One of the first measures was social: mixed marriages of Jews and Gentiles were mocked and ridiculed and even persecuted. By 1935, Jews and Germans were forbidden mixed marriage by law, as they were denied civil rights and access to the the courts. Mixed couples were often in distress when one was set for deportation and degradation, and one was allowed to stay as a free citizen in Germany: some even chose deportation and the killing centers over separation from spouses and children: others sought avenues of hiding family members or aiding escapes.x

    In the ghettos, many Judenrats were forced into policies and laws regarding a ban on Jewish offspring and pregnancy. A woman already pregnant entering the ghetto could have the child, but in some ghettos, if a woman became pregnant, she was required to have an abortion: if she did not willingly have one, it was forced upon her, so intent were the Nazis on putting an end to the Jewish race. The camps were the same, only worse: infants born in camps such as Auschwitz were immediately put to death or used in experimentation, therefore many Jewish midwives would smother or drown newborns and tell the mothers their children had been stillborn. A live baby meant both mother and child would be destroyed in the gas chambers. Couples were also separated in the camps: partly this was due to difference in labor divisions, and partly to avoid married couples having children. The aim was clearly a generation that would see an end to Jewish youth.

  • C. Measurements of Impurity and the determinants of "Jewishness"(genetic & phenotypical)
  • .....1.The Nazi definition of "Jewishness"

    How Jewish did one have to be to be included in the Nazi Laws? This question was greatly in discussion among"Racial Scientists" early in the Reich. Generally, to be even 1/4 Jewish would suffice to have one fall under the laws of racial impurity. Marriage to a Jew was discouraged at first and later outlawed, but the Nazis mistreated but did not deport aryans married to Jews: it was the 'race' of Jews which was the target of the Final Solution. The Nazis wanted to erase BLOODLINES, not just the present generation. They wanted to make sure first, that all Jews were removed from Germany and Europe, then that all Jews were exterminated, and lastly that there would be no seed to begin again. The Laws declaring German Citizenship, the Nuremberg Laws, , stated in Article 2, the requirements for citizenship:

    ARTICLE 2. (1) A citizen of the Reich may be only one who is of German or kindred blood, and who, through his behavior, shows that he is both desirous and personally fit to serve loyally the German people and the Reich. (2) The right to citizenship is obtained by the grant of Reich citizenship papers.

    and the exact definitions of Racial Purity:

    An individual of mixed Jewish blood is one who is descended from one or two grandparents who, racially, were full Jews, insofar that he is not a Jew according to Section 2 of Article 5. Full-blooded Jewish grandparents are those who belonged to the Jewish religious community

    The Nuremberg Laws of 1935 went on to blantantly outlaw German Citizen for Jews, stating they had no part in the Civil Rights of the Reich.13

  • .....2. Nazi measurement/methodology of racial impurity

    Racial Science by the beginning of the Reich had become so engrained in German Society, that it rapidly gained scientific status. Methods of verifying race like the methods that were developing in the Psychological fields of Individual differences and personality theory, took hold and German scientist developed methods of measurements that included

  • 1)Skull formation and size;
  • 2)Eye Color,
  • 3)Facial Features,
  • 4)Background histories, and even stature and other measures.

    They were essentially looking at the 'phenotype', or outward visible manifestations of 'jewishness', before the days of DNA testing. Many of these tests took place before deportations allowing Nazis to identify Jewish persons for their planned pogroms.

  • D.Judenrein
  • 1. Marriage & Relationship Laws Following the destruction of Civil Rights for the Jews, marital laws and policies were enacted which forbade anyone of Aryan Descent from dating, or marrying a Jew. The picture above shows the humiliation of a mixed race couple who were publicly embarassed. Aryans married to Jews were not forced to divorce their spouses, and they were not given the same punishments such as deportations, but the mixed couple was constantly endangered by public opinion and mistreatment as well being subject to separation. Some Aryan spouses chose to join their husband or wife when deported, but many couples became separated until the end of the war unless a death occurred. To have any government deciding such personal issues is seen by most free societies as anathema to civil liberties, but it became mandatory in wartime and pre-war Germany. Mixed race married couples were seen as polluting bloodlines and making the fabric of the New Germany and the future of a nordically 'pure' Germany possible. See [Mischling
  • 2. Sexual Segregation in the Killing Centers

    Husbands and wives, and in most cases all females and males were segregated in the Work Camps and Killing Centers. More than just a move for convenience, it was so there would be no sexual contact, and hence no births: it was deemed fruitless by the Nazis to proceed with a 'final solution' to the Jewish Question if they continued having offspring. When on occasion a child was born in the camps, some midwives killed the child. While this may sound brutal and heartless, a mother giving birth meant death for both the mother and the child at the hands of the Nazis, so in dire conditions, some midwives tried to save the mothers, since the children were seen as a resource burden and would most certainly be killed anyway. Separation of husbands and wives and males and females in the Camps, was one further means of ending the Jewish race in the Nazi's eyes.

  • 3. Offspring: German and Jewish As mentioned before, Jewish offspring were not welcome. In many Ghettos, the Judenrats were forced by the Nazis to pass decrees insisting that Jewish pregnancies be terminated. If pregnancies occurred and were not terminated, the infants and mothers could face sterilization and/or death. German Children and large families, though were greatly encouraged. The Reich passed a law granting loans to families of childbearing years, in which the terms of repayment were reduced with the birth of each additional child. The slogan 'Kirche und Kitchen" {Church and Kitchen} was promulgated in the hopes of promoting strong and large Aryan families on the homefront, ready for indoctrination as soon as the children could talk. Other financial incentives were given for reproduction during war time. Those willing to participate in a 'birthing' experiment at Lebensborn were allowed subsidies for bearing 'genetically favorable' children, thought mostly to be fathered by members of the SS and other elite Nazi Leaders. These Lebensborn children were placed with 'suitable' German families to be raised. The Nazis spread the concept throughout Germany and Scandanavia, and noted the patriotic duty of young women to bear future German citizens. Art and Culture both reflected the preoccupation with motherhood and the propagation of aryan children, which the Reich believed, properly educated would lead to a new uptopia. Hitler at one point made reference to his lack of concern with the present generation in comparison with with the next. He believed that totally taught and raised by the Reich, he could have his perfect generation.14
  • 4. "Germanization" and Jewish Children The 'Germanization' or Aryanization of a select few Jewish children was allowed. These children were high in intelligence, with notably aryan features, who were orphaned or confiscated from deported parents, usually 8 or under. These children were placed with German families and raised as complete aryans. Theoretically, the very few, intermingled in the gene pool would add positive characteristics of intelligence and health, and would not be sufficient in numbers to defuse the Aryan genetic pool.

    IV. The Eugenics Experiments in the Camps: Souless Science

  • 1. Early pre-Shoah Experiments Early in Hitler's Administration, the political-social milieu included new ethical discussions about the 'fitness' of life as it applies to society and the health of a society, and whether or not some lives could be determined to be 'unfit' or without value to the society, and therefore expendable. These ideas were firmly entrenched in those already in theories posited by Binder and Darwin, and applied not only to the 'fitness' of the person , e.g. economic value to society, but also to the hierarchy of power and leadership. Along with these theorists, hotbeds of Racial Science sprang up in such Universities as Jena under Haeckel, reinforcing theory with experiment, and integrated with the general Eugenics movement in Europe and the US. A resurgence since the 1880s of German culture and archetype/mythology, and the introduction of root race theory into the common philosophy or world view [Weltenschaunng], undergirded even further an outlook in which some lives were seen as promoting German society and cause and others were seen not only as unnecessary, but detrimental. Additionally, economic arguments were promoted vigorously, in which the cost to the state of useless lives such as the retarded, the psychotic, terminally ill, and later even alcoholics, epileptics and the chronically unemployed or habitual offender was calculated publicly and even used as math problems in public schools.

    On this foundation, Hitler's earliest experiments in Eugenics and deliberate influencing of 'bloodlines' came under the T-4 program. The T-4 program, named for its Headquarter address, was founded on the principles of Binder and others who posited that some lives, could be classifed as "Lebensunwerte Leben" or Life Unworthy of Life. This term meant to Binder that the state need have no conscience in terminating lives which did not reach a certain criteria of value or consciousness, redefining those lives as subhuman and not for equal consideration, detrimental to both society and to the 'cost-effectiveness' of the economy. Binder had recommended that a State Review panel of at least three persons be appointed to determine the degree of 'unworthiness' of the life at hand, but by the time Conti and Brandt put the T4 program into practice, the criteria had degenerated to a single doctor assessment, and then to a single physician 'caretaker' assessment in which , for example, the head of a State home for 'mental deficients' could make the decision for all those in the institution. By the end of the program, through starvation, lethal injection and other means, close ot 75,000 deaths were accounted for in this manner with many more continuing after public outcry stop the practice, at least officially. The men trained in the T-4 experiments became the central figures in Operation Reinhard, developing from experience, excellent deceptions to keep victims calm until extermination, and methods of extermination which would kill the most in the shortest time, with the least 'demoralization' to the killers.

  • 2. Camp Experiments-

    Many of the Concentration or 'Killing Center' experiments were begun partly as funded investigations of Racial Science, and partly as a larger body of Medical Experiments in general. Scientific research was given a wide berth and paranormal phenomena, racial and racial-determinant research, rare language and culture research as it applied to Race were funded along with traditional sciences which grew to focus on rocketry and technology for the war effort. The vast number of those in forced labor, also allowed for ease in selection 'subjects' [victims] for medical research, without screenings or consent. Experimentation included submerging victims in frigid waters to study hypothermia in pilots down over waterways, disease and bacilli transmission, studies of skeletal structures and preparation of skeletons of certain types for University research [see Nazweiler near Strasbourg] the study of wounds in which victims would be inflicted with wounds to study their course and treatment, and Eugenics studies, such as Mengele at Auschwitz conducted.

  • a.Auschwitz and Mengele

    Mengele is perhaps the most widely known physician of the Shoah era, known predominately for his cruelty and horrific experiments, even on children. During and after conducting his doctoral research on cranial size and features across the races, Mengele continued with his chairperson work on Eugenics, distinguishing features across races, and other studies involving cruelties not allowed by modern standards. Known for his "Twin Studies" at Auschwitz, which was government funded research, Mengele and others selected out certain 'kinds' of individuals such as twins, dwarfs, or those with physical abnomalies for clinical 'investigation'. Medical Experimentation)

  • .....b. Nuremberg, Justice and the Eugenics Experiments
  • V. The Creation of a Master Race

  • A. Theories of Aryan Superiority
  • B. Lebensraum & Eugenics
  • c. Lebensborn and after

  • FOOTNOTES:

    1(Picture Credit:USHMM archives)


    2"The American Heritage® Concise Dictionary," (c) 1994 Houghton Mifflin Company. (c) 1994 INSO Corporation. All rights reserved.
    3Corollating closely with Galton, Piaget's work in Switzerland and France was aligned with the study of individual differences in Intelligence. He was assigned the task of identifying mentally-deficient persons in Public schools in order to provide segregated special education and/or removal. Piaget parted company with other psychometricians in that he looked for positive and normal differences instead of genetically inferior 'traits'.
    4The very crux of the issue of Eugenics is not in the realm of Science; Genetics can indeed, apart from ethical considerations now modify many aspects of human growth and countenance. What sets Eugenics apart from Science, is the critical issue of "Desireability". The concepts of which behaviors and traits are socially desireable in the Eugenics model almost always focused on political and philosophical concepts, mostly utilitarian, in other words, what is 'useful' to society. Eugenics leaves out a more mature understanding of human suffering, depth, and all concepts of faith, leaving society and life as little more than "machines" of adaptation.
  • 5Anastasi, A. Individual Differences
  • 6The Gnostic Gospels Harvard Press; 198x.
  • 7 x
  • 8Boelke, C. (Ed.) The Secret Conferences of Josef Goebbels
    rThe racial definitions examined the racial inclusion not only of a person's parents, but also of their grandparents. While orthodox Judaism uses definitions of maternal inclusion, the Nazis used racial criteria. Originally, a person had to be 1/4 Jewish by genetic definition and later, even broader definitions were used. In addition to the Reich's fascination with human engineering and genetics, they developed psuedo-scientific methods and measures based on bigotry and sterotypes: for example, instruments were developed to measure nose-length and depth of eye color, believing that "Jewishness" was manifested by these characteristics. Portrayal of Jews followed these assumptions. (See Anti-Semitism
    pThe Jews, the Nazis believed were a degenerate people of degenerate politics, and were held as synonymous with "Bolsheviks" or early communists. They reasoned that since Karl Marx and others were Jewish, that the Jews would bring these hated 'egalitarian' ideas and poverty and social degeneration into the social environ of Germany.

    10 Scholl, Inge. Students Against Tyranny

    11The 'nature' vs 'nurture' arguments in psychology and psychiatry will always proceed: most never come to any synthesis: the most important issue here is that the consequences of belief is behavior: because the Reich believed that mental illness was either disease-process or congenital process, their methods were to eradicated the defective genetic state: this was before the more extensive knowlege of DNA and concepts of DNA engineering came about: at that point in history, the cessation of thosese with the condition and the cessation of procreation which produced the condition was targeted. Even more than the retarded, the populations of mental hospitals were targeted for experimentation in killing methods, most notably on record is a detailed description the use of truck exhaust pipes routed into a small room with no ventilation for the purpose of carbon monoxide poisoning of groups of 30 or so. It was determined early in the Shoah, that this means was not the most efficient, and that the poulation of interest took too long to die, and that the clean-up was too intense. Also, there was the occasional misfortune of a survivor who had to be killed, rather than news of the experiments becoming known. These experiments led to the earlier forms of killing in which specially-designed truckss were fitted with exhaust pipes that fed back into tightly sealed back carriage of the truck. Later it was decided that the numbers required for the extermination of the Jews could not be accomplished killing only small groups at a time.

    12See reference 8: Op Cit.

    13 The Nuremberg Laws


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