The weaknesses of the Weimar Republic played a massive part in Hitler’s rise to power. This includes the impact of the first world war, the constitutional weakness of the Republic, the implications of the Treaty of Versailles and the Kapp/Munich Putsch; along with other factors that led to Hitler’s success, that were not directly related to the Weimar republic, for example the Wall Street Crash, propaganda techniques adopted by the Nazis, and Hitler’s charisma, personality and leadership skills.
Firstly there was the impact of the defeat at World War I and the Treaty of Versailles that followed the defeat. This includes the anger of the German people at their country’s humiliating defeat and surrender. This is known as the ‘stab-in-the-back ’myth because the politicians signed a treaty leading to Germany’s defeat at the war. Reasons for this public feeling were because the Germans weren’t defeated on their own soil, and most soldiers thought they were winning.
Other problems include the poverty in Germany, this involved people going to the length of bartering for food. When the new republic was declared, Ebert was chancellor, which also immensely angered the right-wingers, as Ebert was predominantly a socialist. Finally, the government at the time was completely reliant on the judiciary, army and police to keep order. The problem with this was that the majority of them were loyal to the old system, as well as being right wing. They were much harsher on left wing crime; a prime example of this is Hitler serving just 10 months’ imprisonment for treason.
A significant problem with the Weimar republic was the fact that it was constitutionally weak; the very nature of the PR system proves this, due to the failure to form a majority government. Parties only needed 2% of votes in order to gain seats. There were also a lot of elections, for example in 1932 there were