i. Rise of the Nazis
The rise of the Nazis marked the beginning of the mass exclusion of Jews from all critical domains of German's developmental spheres. This fundamentally came as a result of Hitler's blame on the Jew's for German's loss in World War I. Sender remarks "Words like war and Hitler are part of the daily vocabulary. Reserve soldiers are being recalled for duty. It is believed to be only a precaution" (Sender 9). This saw Nazis take charge of the Jews lives in a dictatorship manner; hence, the Jews lived in constant fear. Sender remarks "The power of life and death is in the hands of the Nazi commandant, this cold sadistic woman. What chance do I have?" (Sender 204).
The stage represented the segregation of the Jews where they would be cut off from the rest of the world. This interfered with the normal cycle of life especially for children. Sender narrates that, "The gates of the ghetto in Lodz are shut tight....vacation is long over, but no schools are open for the children of the ghetto" (Sender 28). There was no communication with the other friends and family. Sender observes that, "You know there is no mail going or coming into the ghetto, so why write?" (Sender 50). Moreover, diseases became the order of the day leading to numerous deaths. "Again hunger and diseases take over and spread in the crowded ghetto. Tuberculosis and dysentery hit every home and spread like wildfire, taking hundreds of lives" (Sender 30).
There was rampant abuse of humanity in the ghettos. Werner Reich's admits "I did not have enough worldly experience to deal with the inhumanity of man to man" (Axelrod 34). Sometimes people who could face any more of the suffering gave up their lives. Werner Reich observes that, "Older people, who were educated and sometimes had deep religious feelings, has a completely different attitude. They couldn't take the inhumanity, and many of them committed suicide" (Axelrod 34)
It came a time when a decision was made allowing Jews to be deported from the ghettos. In Sender's testimony "Deportation orders are speeding up. Daily bulletins are placed all over, in the shops, offices, on the street walls. 'Leave the ghetto as volunteers,' they urge. 'You will get an extra loaf of bread" (Sender 122). The fundamental aim of deportation was to separate members of the families in ghettos. At one time Sender exclaims, "Who has been placed on the latest list for deportation? How can we save our friends? What can each of us do to help?" (Sender 102). The choice of people being deported was done in a random basis and focused on disintegrating nuclear or pure family lines.
iv. Destruction Camps
The growing opposition to the Nazis from the Jews led to the establishment of the destruction camps with an aim of exterminating them. Sender remembers "Their parents were to die. Like the six million of their Jewish brothers and sisters who died in gas chambers" (Sender 2). These gas chambers led to the execution of millions of Jews during this phenomenal time. "Werner was fifteen when he entered the concentration camp of Theresienstadt in the former Czechoslovakia" (Axelrod 34). He admittedly survived and came out alive.
The Jews always had a hidden hope to be liberated from these camps. Sender remembers in one incident, "We play games, tell stories, crack jokes. Our favorite game is What If? 'What is the war came to an end today..." (Sender 49). Finally the day of liberation came to an end when Germany lost the war and the Jews were freed from the concentration camps. Sender exclaims in jubilation, "Girls, we are free! Free! Silence hangs frozen in the air. Hysterical cries break the stillness" (Sender 257). However, despite the release of the Jews from the holocaust, many were sick, families were disintegrated, and numerous challenges of reformation lay ahead.