The most barbaric of discrimination was reserved for World War II, by Nazi Germany and members of the Axis powers. Many people know of the misery the Jews faced under Hitler, but what is often overlooked, is that the gypsies suffered a very similar fate.
gypsies in a concentration camp
Like the Jews, were defined as “enemies of the state”, with both groups of minorities subject to unspeakably inhumane treatment. The product – a death toll estimated to be between 250 000 and 1.5 million. The Romani were systematically expunged from their homes, sent to concentration camps where they were subject to forced labour, before eventually being slaughtered in droves at extermination camps. Out of the multitude of horrors committed against the Romani, perhaps the most graphic would be that of former prisoners reporting that one of the ‘medical experiments’, a form of torture on their own, had a group of Romani given nothing but seawater for days, dehydrating them to the point where some resorted to ‘licking freshly mopped floors’ to quench thirst. Romani who were lucky enough not to experience any of the above were deported, while others were simply deprived of basic living conditions and suffered in ghettos. Such was the extent of the genocide that the Romani population is believed to have been completely wiped out in a number of countries such as Netherlands, Croatia, Estonia, and Lithuania.