When the Allies knew about the concentration camps, why did they do nothing to stop it?
- Pages: 5
- Word count: 1050
- Category: Refugee
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“Churchill knew, we all knew, and we couldn’t do anything about it—except win the war ” (Mazanski). While many may think that the Allies had done much to help the Jews during World War II, they actually did not do anything at all. During July of 1941, the Allies intercepted messages from the Germans that were talking about the Holocaust. They knew that saving the Jews was not the first priority. “I would like to speak about the persecution of Jews in Germany. It is a horrible thing that a race of people should be attempted to be blotted out of the society in which they had been born”(Churchill). Chruchill meant that he hates the Germans for trying to wipe out the Jews.
Churchill was also described as harping the issue but not doing much about it. Later on, the Allies finally did something about the refugee crisis from the end of the war in 1945 when all three of the main Axis powers surrendered. The Allies did not try to stop the Concentration camps because the Allies placed immigration quotas on banning Jews entering their country during and after the war, the Allies did not provide any haven in neutral countries and failed to work together to solve the issue, and the Allies thought that winning the war more important than rescuing Jews from the concentration camps.What the Allies knew about the Concentration campsThe world knew everything that was going on in the concentration camps, the gas chambers, and the death camps that kill many people, but no one worked to stop it immediately. In a summer 1941 newspaper, the British had hacked German radios and started to listen to them; they heard that the Germans were killing a lot of the people in some European countries. Everyone knew, “As [Hitler’s] armies advance, whole districts are being exterminated…”(Churchill). Critical journals and newspapers, including the 1942 London Times, Montreal Daily Star, New York Journal American, and Los Angeles Times, stated the massacre of Jews at one million in many death camps.
The economic devastation of the Great Depression in the United States during the 1930s to the 1940s, combined with a commitment to neutrality in the war with President Roosevelt’s campaign and widespread hostility toward immigrants, reduced the ability of Americans to welcome refugees. The U.S. Department of State passed new restrictive laws during that time that made everything more difficult for immigrants to reach the United States. Clearly, the world had known what was going on in the Holocaust, but didn’t do anything to help. Immigration quotas placed by the AlliesDuring this time of war, there were many immigration quotas placed by the Allies. In 1939, a refugee ship left Germany, but the refugees could not get into America because of immigration laws, such as the Non-Legislative State Department Restrictions. That restriction made applicants now needed two financial written oaths instead of one, thus increasing the number. The refugees tried to have a compromise with President Roosevelt, but he ignored it. The refugees were blocked into the Allied countries and the Allies did not try to help, “As is notorious, Franklin Roosevelt long refused to take political risks on behalf of the European refugees who were predominantly Jewish” (Daniels). The Allies were not willing to risk their economy and their higher social status over the other countries just to save the Jewish refugees from poverty. Therefore, the Allies were taking them in, they blocked them; nothing was changed until after France’s defeat, the Allies realized the dire situations of the Jews and had small actions trying to help them survive through the situation of the war. Not providing any haven in the Neutral countriesAlthough the Allies may have reasons for not letting the Jewish refugees into their countries, the Allies do not have any excuses for not providing any refugee camps in neutral countries. The Jews sought help from the Americans, but they rejected. Many neutral countries such as Switzerland, Turkey, Portugal, Spain, etc, could have done much to take in refugees, but they didn’t. What the Allies could have done was pressuring the neutral countries neighboring the Axis powers to take in refugees to save the Jews.
The Allies could have put more pressure on international level committees like the International Red Cross to help the refugees by aiding them and setting up refugee camps near the Axis countries. Also, when Romania, the only country that agreed to take in more Jewish and other countries’ refugees, had a plan to take in 70,000 more, the Americans and the other Allies used excuses to turn their backs against the plan and canceled all funding and all support physically and economically for this huge project that may be a huge success. The pressuring of the Axis powers will let the Jews have hope and wish the Allies can free more concentration camps and many more prisoners.In conclusion, the Allies did not do anything to rescue the Jews in the concentration camps.
The Allies were doing nothing to stop the spread of the concentration camps because the Allies passed and enforced new immigration laws on banning Jews entering their country. The Allies would not provide any haven in neutral countries, and the Allies’ first priority was winning the war, not saving the Jewish population from the Concentration camps. The refugees tried for a compromise, but President Roosevelt ignored the message sent by the Jews for help. Additionally, when Romania agreed to rescue the Jews, the Americans and the Allies could have actually funded and supported the project of saving Jews. It would most likely be beneficial because Germany would be more pressured about the concentration camps issue and the Allies could have gotten greater glory. However, the Allies chose to turn their backs against the Romanian project to take in refugees, and with no support, the project was shut down. Nowadays, if the Jews had escaped earlier from the concentration camps, millions would not have died, and millions would not have that terrible memory in their mind. Many more would have made it out alive. And if the Nazi were defeated quickly because the concentration camps were freed, many Neo-Nazi movements wouldn’t have springed up. If the Allies had helped the Jews escape, would the war ended earlier, would the Allies benefit nowadays, or would nothing have occurred?