Major deportations to extermination camps, 1942-1944
US Holocaust Memorial Museum
At the Wannsee Conference in Berlin in January 1942, the SS (the elite guard of the Nazi state) and representatives of German government ministries estimated that the Final Solution, the Nazi plan to kill the Jews of Europe, would involve 11 million European Jews, including those from non-occupied countries such as Ireland, Sweden, Turkey, and Great Britain. Jews from Germany and German-occupied Europe were deported by rail to the extermination camps in occupied Poland, where they were killed. The Germans attempted to disguise their intentions, referring to deportations as "resettlement to the east." The victims were told they were to be taken to labor camps, but in reality, from 1942 onward, deportation for most Jews meant transit to killing centers and then death.
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