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Hebrew Sho'ah, Yiddish and Hebrew Hurban (Destruction) the systematic-sponsored killing of six million Jewish men, women, and children and millions of others by Nazi Germany and its collaborators during World War II. The Germans called this the final solution to the Jewish question. The word Holocaust is derived from the Greek holokauston, a translation of the Hebrew word 'olah, meaning a burnt sacrifice offered whole to God. This word was chosen because in the ultimate manifestation of the Nazi killing programthe extermination campsthe bodies of the victims were consumed whole in crematoria and open fires.