- Greater Germany and Occupied Countries
- German Allies or Dependent States
- Allied Countries
- Neutral Countries
Yellow stars in the Netherlands
As of April 29, 1942, Jews in the Netherlands were required to wear a yellow Star of David on their clothing. Flora Pfeiffer wore this yellow star badge in the camps of Westerbork (the Netherlands) and Bergen-Belsen (Germany), between 1943 and 1943. Flora stretched the Star on cardboard and attached a sling to be able to change it from her clothes to her nurse uniform. Flora Pfeiffer was a German Jew, who had moved to Amsterdam with her husband Julius and their son Isaac after the Nazis came to power. They had another son, Fred, born in Amsterdam. In October 1943, Fred and Flora were sent to the Westerbork internment camp. Mother and child were later transported to the Bergen-Belsen. They both survived the war.
Jewish yellow badges in Croatia
Starting during the summer of 1941, Jews living in Croatia have to wear yellow badges identifying them as Jews. The boy on the picture, Emil Svarc, was born in 1936 in Zagreb, Croatia from a Jewish father, Djuro, and a Christian mother named Olga. In August 1941, wearing the Jewish badge, Djuro and his brother Ivan were arrested in the street. Eleven days later they were sent to the concentration camp of Jasenovac. Djuro was later released, his wife managing to bribe a policeman. He spent the rest of the war in hiding in Zagreb. His brother Ivan was killed on April 22, 1945, on the day the Jasenovac camp was being liquidated.
Yellow Stars in France
On May 29, 1942, German authorities require all Jews residing in France to wear the yellow Star of David on their outer clothing, effective June 7. The owner of this yellow star, Chil Pszenica, was born in Koszistau in 1903. He was living in France when the war broke out and he joined the French army. In July 1942, Chil was deported in transport number 6 from the camp of Pithiviers to Auschwitz-Birkenau where he was killed.
Germany attacks Poland on September 1; World War II begins. On September 3, the United Kingdom and France, standing by their pledge to protect of Poland's border, declare war on Germany. On September 17, the USSR invades eastern Poland. Warsaw surrenders on September 27 and the country is divided into three regions. The western side is incorporated into the German Reich, the east is annexed by the USSR and in the centre is created the General Government, annexed and ruled by Germany.
Germany invades Denmark and Norway.
Germany invades The Netherlands, Belgium, Luxembourg and attacks France.
An armistice is signed between France and Germany, which results in the division of France. Germany occupies the north, Italy controls a small zone in the southeast and the south becomes an unoccupied zone, the zone libre, governed by the newly formed Vichy government led by Marshal Pétain. At the same time, the Soviet Union invades Lithuania, Latvia and Estonia.
Hungary joins the Axis. On November 22, Romania joins the Axis. The Axis countries fight against the Allied forces in the Second World War. The three principal partners in the Axis alliance are Germany, Italy, and Japan.
Bulgaria joins the Axis.
On April 6, Germany attacks Greece and Yugoslavia. Yugoslavia is dismantled and replaced by Croatia, Serbia and Montenegro. On June 15, Croatia joins the Axis.
Germany and the Axis invade Soviet Union in Operation Barbarossa. The following month, German troops launch a new offensive and reach Stalingrad. For Operation Barbarossa, four Einsatzgruppen (mobile killing units) are created, each numbering 500–990 men. Their mandate is to instigate and encourage pogroms against the Jewish population, killl higher cadres of the Soviet state and seize their offices and documents.
JUNE TO DECEMBER
Einsatzgruppe A starts its operations killing Jews, Roma, Soviet political officials and disabled people in Kaunas, Vilnius, Siauliai and Riga. In July 1941, they massacre Jews in Daugavpils, Pskov and Tallinn. They reach Leningrad in October, killing people in Pesje, Kikerino and Krasnogvardesk on their way. On November 29-30 and December 8-9, 25,000 Jews are killed in Riga. At the end of 1941, high-ranking German officer Karl Jäger reports to Berlin that the “Jewish problem” in Lithuania is now “solved”.
JUNE TO DECEMBER
Einsatzgruppe B starts its operations in Warsaw on June 24, 1941. In July, its killing units reach Bialystok and Minsk, where they shoot thousands of Jews. Einsatzgruppe B then operates in Brest, Baranowicze and Volkovysk. In August 1941, its troops massacre Jews in Vitebsk, Smolensk, Mogilev and Gomel. In September, Einsatzgruppe B personnel are sent to eliminate the Jews of Briansk and Orel; in October of Mozajsk and in November of Kalinin.
JUNE TO DECEMBER
Einsatzgruppe C starts in Krakow and in July, its troops shoot 3,000 Jews in Lvov before murdering people in Rovno, Kamanets-Podolsk and Zhitomir. By September, more than 27,000 Jews have been killed in Zhitomir. On September 25, 1941, troops shoot nearly 34,000 Kiev Jews in a ravine called Babi Yar. The following months, Einsatzgruppe C carries out massacres in Poltava, Dnipropetrovsk and Charkov.
JUNE TO JANUARY 1942
Einsatzgruppe D reach Kishinev in July, where more than 12,000 Jews are shot. In August, 10,000 more people are shot in Nikolajev. On October 16, killing units reach Odessa, where, helped by Romanian troops, they shoot more than 48,000 Jews. In total, 91,000 Jews are killed in the Crimea region by Einsaztgruppe D, including 22,000 in Simferopol. In January 1942, Einsatzgruppe D carries out killings in Rostov, Krasnodar and Kislovodsk.
Germany invades Vichy France and Tunisia. Morocco and Algeria are liberated by the Allies.