Realities of WWII
In all the decisions I have read (including the John Demjanjuk trial), the prosecution has painted a distorted picture of the realities of WWII. It is as if the whole purpose of WWII was to kill Jews. The anti-German war propaganda has continued and even been amplified to the present day. The reality is that every nation and/or ethnic group fought for their own economic and sociological interests.
(a) Germans - Hitler wanted "lebensraum" to the east and developed his "drang nach Osten" and "ubermenschen" policies accordingly. The area of expansion was to include Poland, Ukraine and the territory up to the Baku oil fields. Slavs (Poles, Ukrainians, Russians) were classified as "untermenschen" specifically so that the German soldiers and populace would feel no compunction in exterminating these dehumanized people. (In contrast, the attitude toward the British was positive, since Hitler wanted them as allies. In fact, during the war, the Germans were far less barbaric to the British than the British to the Germans.)
The Jews were placed in a special category for three reasons. Hitler blamed the Jews for the German loss during WWI. He was especially bitter about Jewish machinations to get the United States to enter the war. Secondly, he was afraid of the economic power of the "international capitalist Jews" which had placed a stranglehold on the German economy before his ascension to power. Thirdly, Hitler was convinced that Communism was a Jewish ideology, and that the Soviet Union was established, run and controlled by Bolshevik Jews. He specifically set up National Socialism (controlled by Germans) as an alternative to International Socialism (controlled by Jews).
Hitler's strategy was to remove Jews from positions of political and economic power within areas of German control. Before WWII, they were ostracized and "encouraged" to emigrate. After the commencement of WWII, they were indeed "ghettoized" in the newly acquired territories as Yitshak Arad correctly states. However, I rather doubt that an official extermination policy called Operation Reinhard actually existed as Arad claims.
(b) British Empire (including Canada, Australia, India) - Hitler had a great deal of respect for the English and wanted them as allies. However, Hitler's plans, if successful, would have ended Britain's domination of the European continent. Britain and Churchill, in particular, would have none of it. Secondly, Churchill was an avowed, self-proclaimed Zionist. (Possibly, he preferred to have the Zionist Jews expend their energies establishing the state of Israel in Palestine, rather than supporting the Communists, who had decimated the Russian Czarist aristocracy in 1917 and were certain to do the same in Britain if they should ever come to power.)
One problem was that most Britons felt a kinship and had respect for Germans as fellow "ubermenschen". Normally, they would have qualms about killing Germans. Consequently, once the war started, Churchill went to great lengths with his war propaganda to vilify Germans. And, of course, he was heavily influenced by the Zionists.
(c) United States - Most Americans simply wanted to stay out of the European war, despite Roosvelt's personal preferences. They were content to expand their economic power by supplying the warring parties. However, after the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor, Dec. 7, 1941, they quickly became the dominant force on the Western front in Europe, as well as in the Pacific.
It must be noted that Jewish influence on American policy was especially strong at the end of the war. The infamous Nurnberg War Trials were one result of this influence.
(d) Soviet Union (Russians) - Stalin, as usual, played a duplicitous game. First, from Sept 1, 1939 to June 22, 1941, he was an ally of the Germans (and received Western Ukraine and the Baltic States in payment). Then, when Hitler double-crossed him and he was on the verge of defeat, he utilized Jewish contacts to obtain military aid from the United States. (In payment, Gromyko later introduced the bill to the UN for the creation of the Israeli state.) Also, as the result of the infamous Yalta Agreement, Stalin got to occupy all of Eastern and Central Europe after the war.
(e) Poland - Poles and Ukrainians have been neighbors, friends and enemies for centuries. Poland had just regained its independence in 1918 and its eastern territory included the Ukrainian ethnographic province of Halychyna (Galicia). Ethnic strife in this region can be easily equated to the Bosnia conflict of the 1990s.
The main goal of the Polish nationalists was to ensure that after the war, they retained their independence and territorial integrity. (They lost Halychyna but gained German territory to the west, and were, of course, dominated by the Russians until 1991.)
(f) Ukraine - suffered over 9 million dead during the WWII Holocaust. There are 3 distinct periods to consider. From September 1939 to June 22, 1941, Western Ukrainians were subject to massive arrests, shootings and deportations as the Russian Communists established control. During the German occupation, the whole nation was dragooned into serving the German war effort. After the return of the Red Army, the population was once again subjected to mass terror as the Communists repacified the countryside.
The overriding goal of politically active Ukrainians was the establishment of an independent Ukrainian state at the end of WWII. To try to achieve this goal, they fought against Germans, Russians and Poles. Sadly, they failed to achieve independence and were once again enslaved within the Soviet Union until 1991.
(g) Jews - Politically active Jews in Poland and Ukraine were predominantly divided into two groups - the Communists and the Zionists. Although ostensibly political rivals, both groups supported the goal of establishing an Israeli state in Palestine. To gain world sympathy and support for their cause, the Zionists publicized exaggerated reports of Jewish deaths during the war. (There is also credible evidence that the Zionists deliberately hindered the saving of Jewish lives in order to increase the number of Jewish casualties.)
After the war both Zionists and Communists were instrumental in instituting and running the infamous Nurnberg War Trials. And in 1948 the state of Israel was established exactly as planned.