Source L is a short section from a book of memoirs, which is a book of memories written by Trudi Eulenburg. In this source Trudi Eulenburg describes how she and her family were treated because they were Jewish and how all of her family and friends didn’t speak or care to know her. She also tells us that no one had any sympathy for them even though none of this was there fault. This source shows us that Trudi Eulenburg believed that all the German people were anti-Semitic and were very easily influenced by the propaganda and lies which was being spread throughout Germany.
The Germans believed that the Jewish people were to blame for all the poverty, all the failures and basically anything bad that had happened in Germany since the end of the First World War in 1919. There are many reasons why Trudi Eulenburg felt like this and one of the reasons is because the brownshirts and normal none Jewish German citizens went round smashing shops windows that belonged to Jews, in her case however her and her fathers shop was left alone but when they arrived there they were told they could never return to the shop and was to sell all the items at whatever price the buyer offered.
Secondly the Germans were lead to believe that the Jews were nothing but people who robbed Germany of there money jobs, education and they were set out the destroy Germany. There are a number of reasons why this source may be a bit unreliable, for example Trudi Eulenburg is going to be bias because of how she was treated by the Nazis and the non Jewish, German society and she would most likely only right about them being horrible and how she was mistreated.
So when writing the book she will miss out some of the nice bits because if she wrote a book on the Nazis being nice it wouldn’t make as much money whereas if she writes a book on them mistreating the Jewish people it will make more money. Another reason why this source is unreliable is because it was published in the early 1980’s which is nearly 40 years after the events had happened and she may have forgotten certain details or exaggerated some of the details to once again make more money in increased sales. Source M is a survey amongst German people carried out by American soldiers in October 1945.
This survey gives you 4 statements and two of which are; Was Hitler right in his treatment of the Jews and Hitler’s actions were in no way justified. This source shows that in 1945, 77% of the German people in the American zone of occupation believed that Hitler’s actions were in no way justified. There are several reasons why source M presents such a different picture of the German people than those mentioned in source L. Firstly the German people may have had a different view on Hitler in October 1945 because World War Two ended in the September of 1945 and the Germans had lost, so they probably would of had a change of opinion on Hitler.
Secondly people would most likely feel more confident to express how they really felt about Hitler and his policies. So this leads to an honest poll showing more think that Hitler’s actions against the Jews were in no way justified. There are a number of reasons why source M may not be totally trust worthy. For example the German people may have been intimidated by the American solders and would have feel embarrassed or silly if they gave an honest opinion. Another reason could be is that we don’t know how many people were asked and only one zone out of four zones were asked, so it is unfair to say that most people believed this.
To conclude the reliability of these sources is unsure because source L shows us that all the German people who were non Jewish followed Hitler’s policies and hated the Jews. But source M shows us that 77% of the German population (in the American zone of occupation) thought that Hitler actions against the Jews were in no way justified. Source N backs up what source L says and most German people didn’t pay attention to the Jewish people. As a historian we will always need more evidence to find out the real truth behind this monstrous event.