The Nazi Experiment 1929-49 - Coggle Diagram
The Nazi Experiment 1929-49
Political Authority 1929-45
Wall Street Crash 1929:
The Wall Street crash had devastating impact on Weimar Germany - Unemployment had tripled to 6 million by 1931.
By 1930 there was increased support for parties such as the KPD and NSDAP.
In January 1933 Hitler was sworn in as chancellor.
Long term causes for the collapse of Weimar:
Too few Germans believed in the Republic
- their political culture was shaped by the authoritarian heritage of the Kaisereich and Weimar was immediately tarnished with the ToV. - However, the people did push for it to work (socialist parties originally gained 85% of votes)
Weimars inheritance was incredibly damaging
- founded on the back of loosing the war which people struggled to accept.
Circulating myths that surrounded the Republic
("Stab in the back" and "November Criminal")
- Nazis had 12 seats in 1928 and 107 in 1930.
Deep rooted economic difficulties;
territorial losses, war debts and reparations constituted a mountain that the Republic could not climb.
This links into the Great Depression and the reliance on American Loans which lead to the ultimate downfall of Weimar.
Short term causes for the collapse of Weimar:
- By autumn of 1932 the number of people unemployed/in short term jobs outnumbered those in permanent roles.
The left wing parties refused to unite whereas the right wing parties merged to create the powerful Nazi party.
In 1932 the KPD got 89 votes and the SPD got 133 whereas the Nazis got 230
(If they had merged they would have won).
Night of the Long Knives 1934
- Hitler killed off any opposing political threats he faced as well as appeasing the German Military of viewed the SA as a potential rival (Rohm wanted to merge the two).
Reichstag Fire 1933
- Hitler used this to induce Hindenburg to issue the Reichstag Fire decree which helped the Nazi Party come to power.
The Nazi-controlled police made mass arrests of communists, including all of the communist Reichstag delegates. This severely crippled communist participation in the 5th of March elections. After the 5th of March elections, the absence of the communists gave the Nazi Party a majority in the Reichstag, greatly assisting the Nazi seizure of total power.
Government and Opposition until 1945
Apparatus of terror state:
- Had the authority to investigate cases of treason, espionage, sabotage or criminal attacks on the Nazi Party.
(Peaked at 30k members).
- Originally established as Hitlers personal bodyguards but later become an elite guard of the Nazi Reich.
- Serve as Hitlers security detail and as military support to enforce Hitlers orders.
- Subgroup of the SS and led by Heinrich Himmler.
- The Terror state mainly fed off of information from the public reporting to the gestapo (57%). It was very rarely the gestapo themselves (0.5%)
Dussledorff population was 4 million - in 1937 had 281 gestapo members.
Opposition and why it failed:
- The group became more active during the war however in 1944 13 of the leaders were hung and the group died down.
- Opposed Hitler and his policies however failed to persuade the German general staff to resign en masse. He was later killed due to his role in the 1944 Bomb plot.
How the 3rd Reich functioned:
There was no coherent system go government in the 3rd Reich. - It was a rampant competition within its power structures, as individuals and groups fought to establish their own dominance.
All political authority emanated from Hitler whether this was by direct order or it was justified by being in line with the Fuhrers pronouncements.
Political Authority and Government 1945-49
Issues of conflict between the Allies from 1945:
Yalta Conference 1945
- The Americans declared they wanted a democratic state to emerge whereas Stalin wanted a neutral and disarmed Germany.