Consolidation of Nazi Power

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Nazi Consolidation of Power 1933-34

The consolidation of power by the Nazi’s was absolute and effective in the years 1933-34 in Germany. Hitler used a range of events such as the Reichstag fire and Hindenburg’s death to act as a catalyst to achieve his final goal, as the undisputed Fuhrer, by august of 1934. Also the passing of certain laws such “the protection of People and State Act” and the “Enabling act” gave the Nazi’s further power to consolidate their position as the only party in Germany.

The Reichstag fire served as the point wherein action could be launched and was the first real step to Hitler consolidating the Nazi’s power. As the fire was suspected to have been caused by a Dutch communist, the Nazi Party used this to justify the banning of all communist publications and made 4000 arrests. Hindenburg was shaken by the fire, with Hitler convincing him the state was in distress, and forcing him into signing the ‘Protection of People and State Act’ which suspended people’s basic freedoms. Thus Hitler was already using the inherent flaws of the Weimar republics constitution notably article 48 to defy its very democratic principles, whilst simultaneously providing himself with power.

After the 1933 elections in which the Nazi party won 340 seats, Hitler held a lavish ceremony at Potsdam to symbolically assert his power. Potsdam was the ancient city of Frederick and thus by holding the ceremony at Garrison church and not in Berlin, the Nazi party was making the statement that they were the heirs to the pre-war glorious Germany. Hitler himself played a vital role in the preceding as he greeted field marshal and President Hindenburg with a low bow and a handshake thus reinforcing the “symbolic tie between the old and the new.”(Mason). Therefore this was another factor that led to Nazi’s consolidating of their power in 1933-34.

‘The law for the removal of Distress of People and State’ or more commonly known as the enabling act was another factor...
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