Rise and Fall of Nazi Germany

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Jon Smith
Rise and Fall of Nazi Germany final paper

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A Totalitarian regime uses terror not only as an instrument to suppress opposition, but once free of opposition, terror is employed to ensure the movement of the regime. As Hannah Arendt contends, "if lawfulness is the essence of non-tyrannical government, and lawlessness is the essence of tyranny, then terror is the essence of totalitarian domination."(p. 162) Terror is the instrument used by the totalitarian movement to achieve a complete totalitarian state. Unlike many other totalitarian states, “The Third Reich was not a totalitarian state; it was a caricature of onea caricature reflecting all the dreams, hopes and ideas of the early Nazi leaders as they constituted their authoritarian state.” (9, Hhne) Totalitarianism is the establishment of a political regime in which all of society is held accountable for the acceleration of a stated movement. All activity in society, public and private, is focused towards achieving a state of complete unison, in which every man's entire life can only serve one goal, the fulfillment of the predetermined forces of nature. By establishing a universal ideology, upon which every man's fate and purpose in society can be deduced, a totalitarian regime completely erases the need for the expression of individual will and purpose. The Totalitarian government does not just curtail liberties or essential freedoms, nor does it succeed in "eradicating the love for freedom from the hearts of man,"(Arendt, 164). This terror prevents people from even the smallest of political and social discussions, leaving only assumption to fuel a resistance. With the abolishment of self-determination, the totalitarian regime effectively isolates every individual from his own thoughts and judgements, creating a human being that cannot believe his own conclusions, rendering him effectively useless as a...
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