The Holocaust

Start Free Trial

What are two significant examples of Jewish resistance during the Holocaust?

Expert Answers

An illustration of the letter 'A' in a speech bubbles

The Jewish people resisted the Holocaust in two different ways: active resistance and passive resistance.

Active Resistance:  Active resistance occurred throughout Germany and the German-occupied countries when the Jewish citizens fought back against the Nazis. 

  • 1943 Uprising at Treblinka-- young men forged keys to sneak into the arms storage at the camp.  The inmates distributed weapons and grenades.  The attack resulted in 1,500 lost lives of prisoners, but it disrupted gassing operations at the camp for more than a month.
  • 1943 Warsaw ghetto-- men and women revolted against the SS when it became clear that the Nazis were deporting the ghetto inhabitants to Treblinka.

Passive Resistance:  Passive Resistance also occurred; although not directly confrontational passive resistance made a major impact in saving Jewish lives.

  • Leaving and Hiding-- Many German-born Jews protested their treatment by leaving Germany, before tensions escalated.  Alfred Einstein feared the direction that Germany was headed and left for the United States.  Other families, like the Franks, made famous by the Diary of Ann Frank, had friends to help them hide from the Nazis.
  • Sabotage-- Many of the imprisoned Jewish men in the concentration camp work programs chose to sabotage the machinery and equipment that they were forced to work on.  Mike Jacobs, in his book Holocaust Survivor, recounts how he lied about being a machinist so he could sabotage the steering mechanisms on German aircraft when he was imprisoned in their work camp.

See eNotes Ad-Free

Start your 48-hour free trial to get access to more than 30,000 additional guides and more than 350,000 Homework Help questions answered by our experts.

Get 48 Hours Free Access
Approved by eNotes Editorial