The Holocaust for the Children
The Holocaust was a particularly harrowing experience for children. These young people often lost their lives simply because of what they were, and most times for no other reason at all. It wasn't unusual for children to be killed at birth, shot at random, or sent as the first in line to the death camps where they would be killed because they were 'useless eaters' in the eyes of the Nazi leaders that were in charge of Germany at the time. Adolf Hitler was known to love children, although he wasn't known to have any of his own. He was the godfather to many of the children of his leading men.
Still, he somehow managed to oversee the deaths of more than 1.5 million children throughout the Holocaust, which lasted for just over 12 years in Nazi Germany. This event is one of the largest cases of genocide in history and definitely a black mark on 20th century history, but the senseless murder of children is perhaps the most disturbing part of it all for some people. Children that were sufficient to be 'Germanized' were often kidnapped from German-occupied countries and adopted by German families.
Jewish and other children, as well as German children who were mentally or physically disabled, were often killed just because they took up space and provided no value. Children who were over the age of 12 had a much better chance of survival because they could at least be sent to labor camps and put into other forced labor situations. Some were sent for medical experimentation, which still didn't always result in a lot of torture or a death sentence. Many children were killed when they were born, while others were put in the front of the line at death camps when they arrived. Still more died from starvation, disease, and exposure while they lived in ghettos and concentration camps during the Nazi rule of Germany.
Often, many women would seek abortion to avoid having their babies killed. For a few years, an operation known as Kindertransport existed to help children escape Nazi Germany, but this operation was all but abandoned as Germany continued to gain power. The punishment for hiding children was death, under no uncertain terms. People still continued to attempt to hide them, and by the end of the Second World War, there were thousands of orphaned children that needed to be relocated because they had somehow survived the Holocaust.