The Night of Broken Glass

November 9th 1938

Adolf Hitler ordered his solders to destroy all Jewish buildings after a 17 year old Parisian Jew shot and killed a German Ambassador. He shot the German Ambassador because he felt that the Germans weren't treating him and his family very well. All over Germany, Austria and other Nazi controlled areas, Jewish shops and department stores had their windows smashed and contents destroyed. Synagogues were especially targeted for vandalism. Hundreds of synagogues were systematically burned while local fire departments stood by or simply prevented the fire from spreading to surrounding buildings.

About 25,000 Jewish men were rounded up and later sent to concentration camps where they were often brutalized by SS guards and in some cases randomly chosen to be beaten to death.

The reaction outside Germany to Kristallnacht was shock and outrage, creating a storm of negative publicity in newspapers and among radio commentators that served to isolate Hitler's Germany from the civilized nations and weaken any pro-Nazi sentiments in those countries.