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(1939 - 1945)

Judenrein (Judenfrei; Ger. for “cleansed [or free] of Jews”) is a National Socialist term applied in the “Final Solution of the Jewish Question.” The creation of a “Germany and of German living space and ultimately of a Europe free of Jews” was the definitive aim of the National Socialist “Final Solution.” In National Socialist terminology and in the Nazi policy of extermination of the Jews, the term referred to towns and regions after their entire Jewish population had been deported to the extermination camps. Especially in occupied Poland (General Government), the term judenfrei formed a permanent part of the unofficial and official language used by Nazi officials.

The “cleansing of Jews” was first accomplished by deporting Jews from Germany and other countries to the east. There were discussions about the shipment of Jews to reservations – the Nisko and Lublin plans – and of Jews to Madagascar, where they would be contained. Eventually, as the “Final Solution” evolved, the solution became final, namely the “cleansing of Jews” was accomplished by systematic murder.


Jewish Historical Institute, Warsaw, Faschismus-Ghetto-Massenmord (Ger., 19612), passim.

Source: Encyclopaedia Judaica. © 2007 The Gale Group. All Rights Reserved.