Quotes on Genocide
• There aren't just bad people that commit genocide; we are
all capable of it. It's our evolutionary history.
• Morality binds people into groups. It gives us tribalism, it
gives us genocide, war, and politics. But it also gives us
heroism, altruism, and sainthood.
What are our goals today?
• Explain why the Holocaust is the most famous genocide
• Examine different definitions of the term ”Genocide”
• Compare and Contrast different definitions
• Define “Genocide” in our class
Why is the Holocaust the most famous
• One of the most documented events in history
• Many materials on the Holocaust (books, videos, etc)
• Captured the interested of everyone
• Focal Point (Western Europe, place, and time)
• Many survivors still alive
Compare and Contrast different definitions
of Genocide
• Working in a small group (3 people at most) read the
different definitions of genocide.
Compare and Contrast the different definitions. What do
they have in common? What is different?
Fill out the “Genocide Definitions” (second page) sheet
using the definitions of Genocide for Part 1
Part 2 read over each scenario and decide if it is a
Create your own definition of genocide – Write it down on
a piece of paper
Genocides of the 20th Century
• 1904 - German government massacred over 81% of the
population of the Hereros in southern Africa (65,000 out of a
total population of 80,000).
1915 - Ottomans killed over one million Armenians attempting
to completely eradicate (kill) all of the Armenians living in
1919 - Ukrainians executed up to 250,000 Jews.
Early 1930s - Stalin of the Soviet Union purposely starved to
death up to ten million Ukrainian people.
Late 1930s - Soviet Union shot and killed up to 500,000 people
for political reasons (there is proof that in 1937-1938,
sometimes up to 1000 persons were shot per day in Moscow
Early 1940s - Nazi Holocaust killed nearly six million Jews by
firing squad, burning alive, and poison gas.
Genocides (cont.)
• Early 1940s - Germans executed up to 500,000 gypsies in an attempt to
destroy them. 8. 1950s - China attempted to destroy Buddhism in Tibet
and killed thousands.
1965 - Indonesia killed 600,000 people accused of being "communist.”
Late 1960s - Tutsi killed up to 300,000 Hutus in African nation of Burundi.
Since 1965 - over 100,000 Indians killed in Guatemala by military.
Late 1960s - thousands of Ibos in Nigeria were massacred or starved to
death by the government.
1971 - up to three million Bengalis killed by the Pakistan government.
1972-1973 - Thousands of Ache Indians were tortured, enslaved, or killed
by the Paraguayan government.
Late 1970s - up to three million Kampucheans killed by the Kmer Rouge.
1975 to present - up to 100,000 out of a total population of 600,000 East
Timorans killed by Indonesian troops.
1980s - Thousands of Bahai have been tortured and killed in Iran and
Middle East.
Could this happen at MTHS?
• In one school, a group of four boys began whispering and
laughing about another boy in their school that they thought
was gay. They began making comments when they walked by
him in the hall. Soon, they started calling the boy insulting antigay slurs. By the end of the month, they had taken their
harassment to another level, tripping him when he walked by
and pushing him into a locker while they yelled slurs.
• Some time during the next month, they increased the
seriousness of their conduct – they surrounded him and two
boys, held his arms while the others hit and kicked him.
Eventually, one of the boys threatened to bring his father’s gun
into school the next day to kill the boy. At this point another
student overheard the threat and the police were notified.
• (From Sticks and Stones by Stephen L. Wessler)
Triangle of Hate
Stage 1: Classification
• “Us versus them”
• Distinguish by nationality, ethnicity, race, or religion.
• Classification is a primary method of dividing society and
creating a power struggle between groups.
Stage 2: Symbolization
Names: “Jew”, “German”, “Hutu”, “Tutsi”.
 Languages.
 Types
of dress.
Group uniforms: Nazi Swastika armbands
Colors and religious symbols:
Stage 3: Dehumanization
One group denies the humanity of another group, and
makes the victim group seem subhuman.
Dehumanization overcomes the normal human revulsion
against murder.
Der Stürmer Nazi Newspaper:
“The Blood Flows; The Jew Grins”
Kangura Newspaper, Rwanda: “The
Solution for Tutsi Cockroaches”
From a Nazi SS Propaganda Pamphlet:
Caption: Does the same soul dwell in these bodies?
Stage 4: Organization
• Genocide is a group crime, so must be organized.
• The state usually organizes, arms and financially supports the groups
that conduct the genocidal massacres. (State organization is not a legal
requirement --Indian partition.)
• Plans are made by elites for a “final solution” of genocidal killings.
Stage 5: Polarization
• Extremists drive the groups apart.
• Hate groups broadcast and print polarizing propaganda.
• Laws are passed that forbid intermarriage or social interaction.
• Political moderates are silenced, threatened and intimidated, and
•Public demonstrations
were organized against
Jewish merchants.
• Moderate German
dissenters were the first
to be arrested and sent
to concentration camps.
Attacks are staged and
blamed on targeted
In Germany, the Reichstag
fire was blamed on Jewish
Communists in 1933.
Cultural centers of
targeted groups are
On Kristalnacht in 1938,
hundreds of synagogues were
Stage 6: Preparation
Members of victim
groups are forced to
wear identifying
Death lists are made.
Victims are separated
because of their ethnic
or religious identity.
Stage 7: Extermination (Genocide)
begins, and
becomes the
mass killing
legally called
"genocide." Most
genocide is
committed by
Einsatzgrupen: Nazi Killing Squads
Stage 8: Denial
Denial is always found in genocide, both during it and
after it.
Continuing denial is among the surest indicators of further
genocidal massacres.
Denial extends the crime of genocide to future
generations of the victims. It is a continuation of the intent
to destroy the group.
The tactics of denial are predictable.
Denial: Deny the Evidence.
Deny that there was any mass killing at all.
Question and minimize the statistics.
Block access to archives and witnesses.
Intimidate or kill eye-witnesses.
Denial: Blame the Victims.
Emphasize the strangeness of the victims. They are not
like us. (savages, infidels)
Claim they were disloyal insurgents in a war.
Call it a “civil war,” not genocide.
Claim that the deniers’ group also suffered huge losses
in the “war.” The killings were in self-defense.
Is this a Genocide?
• The government declares that subversive groups have
been undermining national security by using terrorist
tactics against social institutions (military, educational,
economic). A national emergency is declared and
subversives are arrested, imprisoned and eventually
many “disappear.”
Is this a Genocide
• Government policy of converting forests and surrounding
areas into pastureland has produced conflict between
indigenous peoples and new settlers. New settlers take
action to expand their control over forestlands, and in the
process eliminate not only the food sources but the
economic livelihoods of the indigenous cultures.
Indigenous peoples who resist are relocated, and some
die in the process. Most significantly, survival of the
indigenous culture is threatened.
Is this a Genocide?
• In a society where ethnic tensions have long been a
problem, a minority religious and ethnic group has long
suffered at the hands of the majority ethnic group. Recent
attempts by the majority group to solidify control of the
national government through use of discriminatory
legislation have led to violent uprisings by the minority
ethnic group, which also has a distinct religious tradition.
Military forces controlled by the majority ethnic group
have retaliated and massacred elements of the minority
group in isolated towns and villages.
Is this a Genocide
• A revolutionary government has recently come to power
and has begun to take reprisals against its opponents in
this nation. Those opponents of the current regime who
were in positions of high status or influence prior to the
revolution are prime targets of the reprisals, and many
have been deported, relocated into labor camps, or
imprisoned. A policy of “re-education” of the young has
been implemented by the revolutionary government, and
all who oppose it are either exiled or killed by the
revolutionary army.
Is this a Genocide?
• The government of this country has determined that the most
effective means for solidifying its control over the population is
to identify a cultural group that has long been a target of
prejudice and discrimination, and blame it for recent internal
social and economic problems. Despite the support of a vocal
minority of intellectuals and some outside pressure from
sympathetic governments, the targeted group has received
little aid in its protests against this policy. Forced relocation and
denial of basic civil rights have already been imposed upon this
group by the government, and some group members have fled
the country warning of harsher measures to come.

Introduction to Genocide - Montville Township School …