Exactly how did Hitler come into power? What drove him to become the way he was? Why did he kill all those people? In this report, Ill examine these questions and many others.
Hitler was born on April 20, 1889 at Branau am Inn in Austria-Hungary. He went by his mother’s last name Schicklegruber until 1876 when he took the name Hitler. He spent much of his childhood in upper Austria linz. He had a terrible record in school. He stayed in school until 1905 when he was 16 years old. He aspired to become an artist and applied for entrance into the Vienna academy but was rejected for lack of talent.
Hitler’s mother passed away five years after the death of his father. The death of his mother was an important event because it helps to explain his anti-Semitic views. His Mother Klara was diagnosed with breast cancer and treated with a kind of iodine. Their family doctor was Jewish and his name was Edward Bloch.
Klara died on December 21, 1907. On Christmas eve Hitler went and thanked Bloch for doing all he could and then Bloch gave him the bill. His mother’s doctor bill amounted to ten percent of his mother’s estate. That was when Hitler became furious with Jewish peoples and began hating Jews. For the next few years, Hitler made his living writing postcards for advertisements.
German generals requested armistice negotiations with the allies in November of 1918. Under the terms of the armistice, the German army was allowed to remain intact. They were not forced to admit defeat by surrendering. The French and British were convinced Germany would not be a threat again. The failure to force German general staff to admit defeat would have a huge impact on the future of Germany. The German general staff would support the false idea that the army had not been defeated on the battlefield and couldve fought on to victory.
Many people believed in the stab in the back theory. German politicians who signed the armistice on November 11, 1918 became known as the November criminals. Many of which were Jewish. After the armistice, remnants of the German army straggled home from the front to face big uncertainty. Germany was now a republic-form government, which Germans historically had little experience or interest in. Germans blamed Jews for the loss of World War I. It was easy for people to make Jews scapegoats.
In the summer of 1919 Adolph Hitler was still in the army. He was stationed in Munich and had become an informer. Corporal Hitler named soldiers in his barrack who supported Marxist uprisings in Munich, which resulted in arrests and executions. Hitler became one of many undercover agents in the German army weeding out Marxist influence in the ranks. Adolph was a lonely man, who unable to establish even ordinary human relations.
The army sent him to a political indoctrination course at the university of Munich, where he came to the attention of his superiors. Hitler’s anti Semitic outbursts impressed his superiors. In August of 1919, Hitler was given the of job lecturing returning German POWs on the dangers of communism, pacifism, democracy and disobedience. He also delivered tirades against the Jews that were well received among the weary soldiers that were looking for someone to blame for all their misfortunes. Hitler discovered much to his delight that he could speak well in front of a strange audience, hold their attention and sway them to his point of view. Hitler referred to himself as a born orator. For his next assignment, he was ordered in September of 1919 to investigate a small group in Munich called the German Workers Party.
IV. The new republic and the treaty of Versailles
After they were defeated in World War I, Germany established the Weimar republic under the treaty of Versailles. The new German republic would eventually have a constitution on paper that made it one of the most liberal democracies in history. The constitutions ideals included equality, political power for the people, political minority representation, a new Reichstag cabinet, a chancellor and a president. Germany was a nation in political and social chaos.
The Weimar republic was doomed from the start. The development of the Weimar republic caused agitation, unemployment and massive inflation. The leaders of the new German democracy made deal with German general staff that allowed the generals to maintain rank as long as they had the armys support in return.
On June 28, 1919 the treaty of Versailles was signed and the allies dutifully ratified the German democratic government. Under the terms of the treaty, Germany alone was forced to accept responsibility for causing the war and had to pay huge war reparations for the damage. The Germans were forced to give up land to France and Poland. The German army was limited to 100,000 men. The German army forbidden have submarines military aircraft. The treaty humiliated the German nation to the world.
Hitlers ideas of an Aryan super race gained support among the Germany Nordic races. Hitler thought the superior race would have blond hair, blue eyes and be Christian. He expressed interest in expanding German territory, which helps explain why he invaded Europe before Russia. He stated Jews planned to keep Germans from ruling. Hitler describes the struggle for world domination in an ongoing racial, cultural and political battle between Aryans and Jews. He began negative views of Jewish people after a Jewish doctor couldnt save his mother from cancer and left a huge bill.
Hitler believed the Aryan race was superior to the Jews. He blames the Jews for Germany’s problems including the horrific loss of World War I. After Mein Kampf, discussions on genocide rely less on concealment and camouflage because Germany became accustomed to it. Only later could he convert genocidal idealogy to physical actions. He followed anti -Semitic writings by Sigmund Freud, who believed there was superior races and inferior races. Hitler believed all advances in art, technology and sciences came from Aryan people and never Jews, although Albert Einstein was Jewish.
Hitler wanted see the nation throw the limitations of the treaty and take it’s place in the world. Hitler wanted rebirth Germany into a strong nationalist government. Hitler would speak out endlessly against the treaty and gain much support. Hitler believed building a strong nationalist, pro military, anti -Semitic party made of working class people. Hitler associated Marxism with Jews.
From 1921 through 1923 the value of German currency dropped dramatically. They owed over seven billion dollars to American investors. This made German citizens lose faith in their government. Hitler and the nazi party realized it was time to strike in November 1923. Hitler and comrade Erich Ludendorff led an attempt to overthrow the government. This attempt to overthrow the government was known as the beer hall putsch. The beer hall putsch failed miserably and Hitler was convicted for accounts of treason. Hitler was sent to Landsberg prison for a five year sentence. Hitler only served six months in jail.
Adolph Hitler authored Mein Kampf in Germany in prison from 1923 to 1924. Mein Kampf means My Struggle in German. Mein Kampf was published in 1925. The book expresses plans for Germany, ideas, politics, race, youth, early days and the nazi party. This book is the roots of all Hitlers discriminatory and genocidal beliefs and dreams. This book claims German Aryans with blond hair and blue eyes to be the superior race.
The book places Jews, Polish, Russians, Czechs and Gypsies at the bottom of the hierarchy. This book focuses hatred toward communism and Judaism. Mein Kampf states the ultimate goal is to eliminate both from the face of the earth. Mein Kampf details Hitlers anti-Semitic beliefs.
On September 12, dressed in civilian clothes, Hitler went to a meeting of the German Workers Party in the back room of a Munich beer hall with 25 people. He listened to a speech on economics by Gottfried Feder on how capitalism was to be eliminated. After the speech Hitler was about to leave when a man rose up and spoke in favor of breaking away from Germany to form the nation of Austria. An enraged Hitler spoke forcefully against the man for 15 minutes to the astonishment of everyone.
After Hitlers outburst ended, Drexler hurried to Hitler and gave him a forty -page pamphlet entitled My Political Awakening. He urged Hitler to read the pamphlet and invited Hitler to come back. Hitler read the pamphlet. He was delighted to find the pamphlet, which was written by Drexler, reflected his own political thinking. A few days later, Hitler received an unexpected postcard saying hed been accepted as a member into the party. He was asked to attend an executive committee meeting, which he did. At the meeting he was joyfully welcomed as a new member although he was actually undecided on joining. He decided to join the party after thinking about it.
Hitler took charge of party propaganda in early 1920. Hitler recruited young men he had known in the army. He was aided in recruiting efforts by Ernst Rohm, who was a party member and would play a vital role in Hitlers eventual rise to power. Many people were joining the German workers party. He tried to get invitations printed at a stationary store. He got more to come to monthly meetings. He placed an advertisement in a anti-Semitic newspaper in Munich. He moved meetings to a beer cellar that could hold one hundred people. Some members were concerned they might have trouble filling the beer cellar, but one hundred showed up.
Hitler was scheduled as the second speaker in the meeting. October 16, 1919 was his first time as a speaker. Some committee members doubted Hitlers ability at this time. Hitler astounded everyone with his highly emotional speech making. His first meeting was an important moment in his young political career. Donations were used to buy advertising and to print leaflets. Hitler was featured a speaker at nazi meetings. Hitler spoke against the treaty of Versailles and said anti -Semitic messages. In his speeches he blamed the Jews for everything. Attendance slowly increased, numbering in the hundreds. In February of 1920, Hitler urged the German workers party to hold its first mass meeting. Some members thought a mass meeting was premature. Hitler had no of fear disruption in meetings. He had the hall decorated in red to aggravate the Marxists.
A mass meeting was held February 24, 1920 and Hitler was thrilled when entered the large meeting hall. 2000 people waited for the meeting, including communists. A few minutes into the speech, it was drowned out by shouting that was followed by an open brawl between nazi associates and disruptive communists. Hitler resumed speaking and proceeded to outline the 25 points of the German Worker’s Party. The meeting was a huge success. Hitler realized the party lacked a recognizable symbol or flag. In the summer of 1920, Hitler chose the swastika as the symbol of the nazi party. The swastika was an ancient symbol found in a monastery.
Since many people feared Hitlers storm troopers and concentration camps, they joined him instead of standing against him. By 1921, Adolph Hitler was becoming highly effective at speaking in of front larger crowds. In February of 1921 Hitler spoke in front of a crowd of six thousand in Munich. He gained notoriety outside the nazi party for rowdy hysterical tirades against the treaty of Versailles. People listened to racist speeches on his strange philosophy. He spoke out against politicians, political groups and Jews.
He traveled to Berlin to visit nationalist groups in the of summer of 1921. He threatened to leave nazi party but they realized how tremendous the loss would be. He announced his resignation from the party on July 11, 1921.The nazi party was centered in Munich. They named him chairman of the nazi party and gave him dictatorial powers. Hitler was named the fuhrer of the nazi party on July 29, 1921.
In conclusion, Hitler eventually became chancellor of Germany by using the nazi party. He gained control of the entire country through assassinations, and elections. Hitler later went on to start World War II and the Holocaust. But he killed himself in a bunker at the end of the war. His holocaust resulted in many trials and executions. In this report I have tried to give you a little bit of information about Hitler, what made him like he was, and his rise to dictator of Germany.
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Hoffman, Peter “Adolf Hitler” World Book, Chicago 1998.
Keegan, John Hitlers War Against the World U.S. News and Reports,Washington,D.C. August 1989.
Shirer, William The Rise and Fall of the Third Reich United States, Ballantine
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