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Yes, the Jewish Council ruled the ghetto, but I do not feel Elie is speaking in a literal sense.The Jews during this period were living in a state of denial. They never thought that something like the Holocaust would have occurred. The idea was that they were to live in the ghetto until the war was over and then be sent back home to live their normal lives. In a more literal sense, I think that ultimately the Nazis ruled EVERYTHING! They had the authority to change the lives of millions of Jews. The Nazis forced themselves into their homes and took everything of value. Ultimate control of whether or not the Jewish Council ruled over the ghettos belong to the Nazis. If they wanted to take power from the Jewish Council, it would have been so.
I completely agree with Jaz. The Jewish people did not want to believe that they were in any kind of danger. They were literally "ruled by delusion" as they continuously denied that things around them were changing. They kept telling themselves that life in the ghetto was only temporary and that the Germans would "probably allow [them] to live out [their] wretched little lives [there], until the end of the war."(18). The people knew that something was going to happen, they just didn't know what. I believe they could have sensed their situation was becoming dangerous, but they tried to put such thoughts as far from their minds as possible. They attempted to be 'optomistic', but no matter how much they tried to deny it, they no longer had control over their own lives.- Katie :)
both were delusional I agree with you katie but the Germans were also delusional for thinking they were superior and for thinking that their actions were rational.