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On November 9-10, 1938, the Nazis staged state sanctioned riots against the Jewish community throughout the German Reich. These events came to be known as Kristallnacht, a reference to the untold numbers of broken windows of synagogues, Jewish-owned stores, community centers, and homes plundered and destroyed during the pogroms. Encouraged by the Nazi regime, the rioters burned or destroyed 267 synagogues, vandalized or looted 7,500 Jewish businesses, and killed at least 91 Jewish people. They also damaged many Jewish cemeteries, hospitals, schools, and homes as police and fire brigades stood aside. Kristallnacht was a turning point in history.

The pogroms marked an intensification of Nazi anti-Jewish policy that would culminate in the Holocaust-the systematic, state-sponsored murder of Jews. Since some attacks actually occurred even after the night of Nov 9, 1938, and since the word "Kristallnacht" was a euphemism used by the Nazis, the events are today usually referred to as "November pogrom" or "Reichspogromnacht". To learn more, visit the pages below.