G – Gypsies

“In Europe, generally only Jews and Gypsies are of foreign blood.”
– Official German commentary on the Nurmenberg laws, 1935.

During WWII, Romanian people, or “gypsies” were targeted along with Jews as an attempt to “purify” the world of the “inferior races”. The prosecution for gypsies was similar to what Jews went through. In 1899, the Central Office for Fighting the Gypsy Nuisance in Munich was established, which collected information and fingerprints from people of Romanian descent. In 1926, gypsies were forced to carry around identification papers in Baden. Starting 1933, gypsies were required by law to get sterilized. In 1939, gypsies started being deported to concentration camps and many limiting laws were placed upon them, such as the inability to leave their homes or places of settlement. On December 16, 1942 Himmler ordered all Germany gypsies to be sent to Auschwitz , and on August 2-3, 1944, all gypsies remaining at Auschwitz were gassed to death.

Gypsy children playing outside at the Jargeau concentration camp in France

Other Nazi targets

Besides Jews and gypsies, Nazis also targeted Poles, Soviets, physically disabled and mentally retarded people, homosexuals, and transsexuals. The total amount of gypsies killed was over 250,000, the only greater death toll being that of Jewish people.

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