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A third of Americans would refuse to hide Jews from the Nazis during the Second World War, poll reveals


31 per cent of those polled said they wouldn’t have risked helping Jews

Women were more likely to refuse help than men, as were singletons

Southerners and the religious were most likely to offer a hiding place

Almost a third of Americans would have refused to help hide Jews as they were hunted down by the Nazis, according to a new poll.

An astonishing 31 per cent of those surveyed said they wouldn’t have risked their own skin to help the Jews in Hitler’s Germany, with women more likely to refuse than men.

Of those who said they would help, married people were more likely to help than singletons, while those who followed a religion were more likely to help than the non-religious.

Researchers asked 1,000 Americans to ‘think back to World War II when Jews in Europe were forced into concentration camps and many were killed by the Nazis.’

They then followed up with the question: ‘If you were living in this time period, would you have risked the possible imprisonment and death of yourself and your family to hide Jews?’

According to The Hollywood Reporter, while many demographic were looked at separately, Jews were not because the sample size would have been too small to be accurate.

While no accurate estimate exists of the number of Jews saved during the Second World War after being hidden, it is likely to number in the hundreds of thousands.

Some of the more well know hiding operations operated out of Denmark, where virtually all the Jew were taken into hiding after a Danish businessman revealed the Nazi’s plans to deport them days before it took place.

Using underground resistance networks, 7,200 Jews, out of a total population of 7,800, were then sailed to freedom in nearby Sweden in small fishing boats, according to the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum.

In Poland, around 20,000 Jews were believed to be living in hiding from 1942 to 1944, while thousands more were saved by Catholic clergy in southern France.


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