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Heritage Civilization and the Jews
About the Series Historical Timeline Resources Lesson Plans Episodes
3100 586 72 732 1492 1789 1925
Into the Future
1925 - 2000
Statue of LIberty

The 20th century brings great changes for world and the Jewish people. There is significant Jewish migration to America and to settle the land of Palestine. European Jewry is almost completely destroyed, and in the wake of the Holocaust a Jewish state is born. Jews across in Israel and across the world continue to shape Jewish identity.


U.S. Stock Market Crash, Beginning of the Depression


Hitler Becomes Chancellor of Germany


Nuremberg Laws

The Nuremberg Laws revoke Jewish rights in Germany on the basis of race.


Spanish Civil War (1936-1939)

1936 - 1937

Stalin Purges

Stalin attempts to destroy Jewish culture in Russia; Jewish schools, theaters, and publications are closed.


German Annexation of Austria; Kristallnacht

Jewish property and synagogues in Germany and Austria are attacked on November 9th. This becomes known as Kristallnacht, the Night of Broken Glass.


Germany Occupies Czechoslovakia, Invades Poland; Outbreak of World War II; British White Paper

Under Adolf Hitler (1889-1945), Nazi Germany grows and Jews face increasing persecution. The British government issues the White Paper, a statement of policy restricting Jewish immigrantion to Palestine.


Ghettos Established

Expelled from schools and professions, Jews are forced by Nazis to leave their homes and move into ghettos, cut off from the world and forced into labor.


Pearl Harbor, U.S. Enters World War II; German Invasion of Russia; Mass Murder of Jews in the Holocaust

Mass murder of Jews is implemented in Germany and Nazi-occupied areas. Millions of Jews are shot, gassed, and forced into slave labor in an effort to rid Europe of "the Jewish problem."


The Final Solution

Nazi officials implement the Final Solution, the plan for the extermination of the Jews. An assembly-line method of murder is devised through transports, death camps, and gas chambers.


Warsaw Ghetto Uprising

Facing deportation to concentration camps, Jews in the Warsaw Ghetto initiate an armed uprising against the Nazis. After 28 days of fighting, the Ghetto is destroyed and the remaining Jews deported. The Warsaw Ghetto Uprising inspires similar resistance in other ghettos.


Allied Invasion of Normandy; Jewish Brigade Formed as Part of British Forces


Atomic Bombs Dropped on Japan; End of World War II; Establishment of Communist Regimes

By the end of WWII, an estimated six million Jews have been murdered and Jewish communities across Eastern and Central Europe destroyed.


UN Votes for Partition of Palestine and Jewish State

The UN votes in favor of the partition of Palestine into an Arab state and a Jewish state.


State of Israel; Communist Anti-Jewish Campaign

With the Declaration of Independence, the State of Israel is established on May 14th. The next day Arab armies attack, and the War of Independence lasts a year. In the Soviet Union Stalin implements an anti-Jewish campaign (1948-1953).


Korean War (1950-1953); Law of Return

Israel parliament passes the Law of Return, declaring that every Jew has the right to settle in Israel and become a citizen.


Sinai Campaign

The Sinai Campaign, a war between Israel and Egypt, is launched by Israel in the wake of mounting Egyptian aggression.


Jewish Reconstructionist Movement Founded


Eichmann Trial

Adolf Eichmann (1906-1962), Nazi official and S.S. officer, is charged with crimes against the Jewish people and humanity and is brought to trial in Israel. He is found guilty and hanged, the only death sentence imposed by an Israeli court. The trial causes great interest in Israel and across the world.


John F. Kennedy Assassinated


Height of Vietnam War (1961-1970)


Six-Day War

War between Israel and Egypt, Jordan, Syria, and Iraq that lasts from June 5-10th. Israel reunites Jerusalem (split since the War of Independence) and annexes the Sinai Peninsula, Golan Heights, West Bank, and the Gaza Strip. Jews around the world take pride in Israel's swift victory, and newly occupied territories pose challenges for Israeli society.


Soviet Invasion of Czechoslovakia


Arab Oil Embargo; Yom Kippur War

Syria and Egypt attack Israel on Yom Kippur, the Jewish Day of Atonement. The Yom Kippur War has major political and social effects on Israel and the Middle East.


Watergate, Nixon Resigns


Peace Treaty Between Israel and Egypt

Camp David agreements lead to peace treaty signed between Israeli Prime Minister Menahem Begin (1913-1992) and Egyptian President Anwar Sadat (1918-1981).


Beginning of the Lebanon War

Israel begins Lebanon War to combat terrorists in Lebonan. The war draws out and provokes intense debate within Israel.



The Intifada, the national uprising of Palestinians in the West Bank and the Gaza Strip, begins. Political consensus inside Israel is shattered.


Collapse of Soviet Union, Start of Major Jewish Migration to Israel


Oslo Accords; Peace Process Begins Between Israel and Palestinian Authority


Rabin Assassinated

Israeli Prime Minister Yizhak Rabin (1922-1995) is killed by a young Jewish man at a peace rally in Tel Aviv. The assasination shocks Israel and effects the Peace Process.


Peace Process Stalls, Terrorist Attacks in Israel


Intifada 2

The second Palestinian uprising against Israel begins in October. The Peace Process struggles to continue.

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