RISE OF HITLER
Half Austrian and half German. Serves with distinction, wounded returns to Bavaria after war (served in a Bavarian regiment). -
German nationalist+supporter of authoritarianism+ opposed to democracy and socialism + racially motivated (anti-Semitism v German Volk) -
Pseudo spy for Bavarian govt and runs into the DAP (German Workers Party). Likes their anti-capitalist, anti-Semitic and nationalist message. Anton Drexler is founder/head; Hitler has energy, oratory and propaganda skills. -
1920 – 25 Points authored by Hitler/Drexler. DAP>NSDAP. Hirtler in charge of propaganda: salute, uniforms,swastika. Also creates armed squads. -
Drexler alarmed – power play but loses as Hitler offers to resign and instead becomes chairman and Fuehrer. -
1921-23 party reorganization.
A) Armed squads reorganized into SA headed by Ernst Roehm: intimidation and violence. B) 1921 Newspaper – People’s Observer
C) Julius Streicher gives Hitler support (rival right wing group in Bavaria) D) Hermann Goering joins party in 1922. Aristocracy/high society makes party “more respectable” 1923 – 20,000 members – powerful mainly in one part of Bavaria. 1923 – Beer Hall Putsch: successful example of Mussolini and weaknesses of Weimar: a) hostility of elites (top army brass, aristocracy, industry); b) limited popular support, and economic problems. c) Nostalgia for Kaiser and Imperial Germany, not used to democracy d) Economic problems: costs of WWI and debts, reparations, new welfare benefits provided by State (health insurance, housing), hyperinflation because of Ruhr crisis. e) Association with defeat in war – Treaty of Versailles, November criminals and stab in the back myth. Hitler plots “March on Berlin” with Gustav von Kahr (ultra-conservative leader of Bavarian govt) and General von Lossow (local head of army). However, poor planning, not enough public support, too much reliance on General Ludendorff, Kahr and Lossow back out at last minute. Nov 8, Hitler announces a “national revolution” and next day marches into Muncih with 2000 SA. Easily crushed by police and 14 Nazis killed, Hitler arrested for treason. Consequences: Nazi party banned. Hitler gets onto national stage and attracts attention of other right wingers; 5 year sentence>10 months.
Stresemann’s years in power 1923-29.
Mein Kampf written in Landsberg Prison – extension of 25 points. -
Social Darwinism and survival of the fittest, Aryan race and racial purity, no interbreeding, weakness of democracy, November criminals and the stab in the back, Fuehrerprinzip (all powerful single leader), A Reich uniting all German speakers (incl. Austria), the Volk and Volksgemeinschaft (people’s community) living in a harmonious racially pure community. A Great Power needs space – Lebensraum – to the east from inferior people – can get raw materials, cheap labor and food. A “New Order”. An original ideology? -
German political center moves right of center: Democratic Party and Peoples Party lose support after 1924; Center Party (catholics) (ZP) and Nationalist Peoples’ Party (DNVP) move right; Social Democrats don’t join most coalitions. -
Nazi party in disarray, Hilter reorganizes it 27 Feb 1925, writes editorial in party newspaper – “A new beginning” - Decides must have absolute control, no more coups – Policy of legality: to gain power legally. -
Party disagreements esp from Strasser brothers who are more socialistic. Tension between nationalists and socialists, between Bavaria and other German Nazi branches. 1926 Bamberg Party Conference won by Hitler. -
Party Structure changes: Gauleiters (regional party leaders) – a vertical party structure. -
Joseph Goebbels – Gauleiter for Berlin. Founds “The Attack” newspaper; will become head of propaganda in 1930. -
New groups: Hitler Youth; Nazi Teachers Asstn, Union of Nazi Lawyers; Order of German Women. SS created in 1925 first as Hitler’s elite bodyguards. A) 1928 Reichstag elections – 2.6%
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