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Dr. Götz Aly
2002-2003 J.B. and Maurice C. Shapiro Senior Scholar-in-Residence

"The Financing of World War II and the Exploitation of Jewish Property in Nazi Occupied Europe"

Professional Background

Dr. Götz Aly received Ph.D. in history and political science at the Free University in Berlin, Germany. During his fellowship at the Museum, he was an independent historian. For his J.B. and Maurice C. Shapiro Senior Scholar-in-Residence Fellowship, Dr. Aly conducted research for his project “The Financing of World War II and the Exploitation of Jewish Property in Nazi Occupied Europe.”

Dr. Aly has published over twenty books on Holocaust-related subjects. In addition to several scholarly articles and book chapters, he has authored or edited many publications including, with co-author with Susanne Heim, 2002-2003 Charles H. Revson Foundation Fellow at the Center for Advanced Holocaust Studies, United States Holocaust Memorial Museum, Architects of Annihilation: Auschwitz and the Logic of Destruction (Princeton University Press, 2003), originally published as Vordenker der Vernichtung: Auschwitz und die deutschen Plaene fuer eine neue europaeische Ordnung (Fischer, 1993); with Christian Gerlach, Das letzte Kapitel : Realpolitik, Ideologie und der Mord an den ungarischen Juden 1944-1945 (Stuttgart: Deutsche Verlags-Anstalt, 2002); Cleansing the Fatherland: Nazi Medicine and Racial Hygiene (Johns Hopkins University Press, 2000); “Endloesung”: Voelkerverschiebung und der Mord an den europaeischen Juden (Fischer Verlag, 1995) which has been published in English, Japanese and Rumanian; The Value of the Human Being: Medicine in Germany 1918-1945 (Arztekammer Berlin,1991); Aktion T4, 1939-1945: die “Euthanasie”-Zentrale in der Tiergartenstrasse 4 (Berlin: Hentrich, 1987); and Sozialpolitik und Judenvernichtung: gibt es eine Oekonomie der Endloesung? (Rotbuch Verlag, 1987). For his path-breaking research and illuminating analyses, Dr. Aly has received some of the most prestigious prizes and honors in Germany, including the Heinrich-Mann-Prize and the Marion Samuel Prize.

Fellowship Research

During his tenure at the Museum, Dr. Aly examined the links among Nazi war planning, anti-Jewish measures, and the development of the Reich’s leading state and private financial policies. He focused his research on large state and private operations of confiscation and money laundering. He determined that, with the help of Germany’s major banks, the Reich’s Finance Ministry extracted 1.2 billion marks from the Jews as “reparations” for the November 1938 pogrom. Dr. Aly discovered that similar examples of state-led robbery on such a massive scale occurred across Nazi-occupied Europe and contributed directly to the funding of the Nazi war machine. Nazi-occupied countries were forced to pay the Germans’ “occupation costs”—exorbitant sums of money that occupied countries usually raised through arbitrary taxes levied against the Jews and outright confiscation of Jewish assets. Wehrmacht soldiers received wages and pensions through a money laundering system that began with the seizure of Jewish property. Dr. Aly’s research was published after his tenure in Hitlers Volksstaat. Raub, Rassenkrieg und nationaler Sozialismus [Hitler’s Primary State: Robbery, Racial War and National Socialism] (Fischer, 20) 

Dr. Aly was in residence at the Mandel Center from March 1 to August 1, 2003.