Adolf Hitler

Born HYPERLINK «» \o «April 20»
April 20 , HYPERLINK «» \o «1889»

Died HYPERLINK «» \o «April 30»
April 30 , HYPERLINK «» \o «1945»

Political party HYPERLINK
\o «National Socialist German Workers Party» National Socialist German
Workers Party (NSDAP)

Political positions HYPERLINK
«» \o «Fuehrer» Fuehrer
(Leader) of the NSDAP (1921-1945)

«Chancellor of Germany» Reichskanzler of Germany (1933-1945)

Fuehrer und Reichskanzler (head of state) of Germany (1934-1945)

«Hitler» redirects here. For other uses, see HYPERLINK
«» \o «Hitler
(disambiguation)» Hitler (disambiguation) .

\o «De-Adolf Hitler.ogg» Adolf Hitler ( HYPERLINK
«» \o «Wikipedia:Media
help» help · HYPERLINK
«» \o
«Image:De-Adolf Hitler.ogg» info ) ( HYPERLINK
«» \o «April 20» April 20 ,
HYPERLINK «» \o «1889» 1889 –
HYPERLINK «» \o «April 30» April
30 , HYPERLINK «» \o «1945» 1945 )
was HYPERLINK «» \o
«Chancellor of Germany» Chancellor of Germany from 1933, and
HYPERLINK «» \o «Fuehrer»
Fuehrer (Leader) of HYPERLINK «»
\o «Germany» Germany from 1934 until his death. He was leader of the
\o «National Socialist German Workers Party» National Socialist German
Workers Party (Nationalsozialistische Deutsche Arbeiterpartei or
NSDAP), better known as the HYPERLINK
«» \o «Nazism» Nazi Party.

Hitler gained power in a Germany HYPERLINK
«» \o «Weimar Republic»
facing crisis after HYPERLINK
«» \o «World War I» World War I
, using HYPERLINK «»
\o «Charismatic authority» charismatic oratory and HYPERLINK
«» \l «Nazi_Germany» \o
«Propaganda» propaganda , appealing to economic need of the lower and
middle classes, HYPERLINK «»
\o «Nationalism» nationalism and HYPERLINK
«» \o «Anti-Semitism»
anti-Semitism to establish an HYPERLINK
«» \o «Authoritarian»
authoritarian regime. With a restructured economy and rearmed military,
Hitler pursued an aggressive foreign policy with the intention of
expanding German HYPERLINK «»
\o «Lebensraum» Lebensraum («living space») which triggered
«» \o
«European Theatre of World War II» World War II in Europe by ordering
the invasion of Poland. At the height of its power, HYPERLINK
«» \o «Nazi Germany» Nazi
Germany occupied most of HYPERLINK
«» \o «Europe» Europe , but it and
the HYPERLINK «» \o «Axis
Powers» Axis Powers were eventually defeated by the HYPERLINK
«» \o «Allies of
World War II» Allies . By then, Hitler’s HYPERLINK
«» \o «Racial
policy of Nazi Germany» racial policies had culminated in the
HYPERLINK «» \o «Genocide»
genocide of 11 million people, including about six million HYPERLINK
«» \o «Jew» Jews , in what is now known
as the HYPERLINK «» \o
«Holocaust» Holocaust .

In the final days of the war, HYPERLINK
«» \o «Hitler’s death»
Hitler committed suicide in HYPERLINK
«» \o «Fuehrerbunker» his
underground bunker in HYPERLINK «»
\o «Berlin» Berlin with his newlywed wife, HYPERLINK
«» \o «Eva Braun» Eva Braun .


HYPERLINK «» \l «Early_years» 1 Early

HYPERLINK «» \l «Childhood_and_heritage»
1.1 Childhood and heritage

«Early_adulthood_in_Vienna_and_Munich» 1.2 Early adulthood in Vienna
and Munich

HYPERLINK «» \l «World_War_I» 1.3 World
War I

«The_early_years_of_the_Nazi_Party» 2 The early years of the Nazi Party

«Hitler.27s_entry_into_politics» 2.1 Hitler’s entry into politics

HYPERLINK «» \l «The_Beer_Hall_Putsch»
2.2 The Beer Hall Putsch

HYPERLINK «» \l «.22Mein_Kampf.22» 2.3
«Mein Kampf»

«The_rebuilding_of_the_party» 2.4 The rebuilding of the party

HYPERLINK «» \l «The_road_to_power» 3
The road to power

«The_Br.C3.BCning_administration» 3.1 The Bruening administration

«The_cabinets_of_Papen_and_Schleicher» 3.2 The cabinets of Papen and

«Hitler.27s_appointment_as_Chancellor» 3.3 Hitler’s appointment as

«Reichstag_Fire_and_the_March_elections» 3.4 Reichstag Fire and the
March elections

«The_.22Day_of_Potsdam.22_and_the_Enabling_Act» 3.5 The «Day of
Potsdam» and the Enabling Act

«Removal_of_remaining_limits» 3.6 Removal of remaining limits

HYPERLINK «» \l «The_Third_Reich» 4 The
Third Reich

HYPERLINK «» \l «Economics_and_culture»
4.1 Economics and culture

«Rearmament_and_new_alliances» 4.2 Rearmament and new alliances

HYPERLINK «» \l «The_Holocaust» 4.3 The

HYPERLINK «» \l «World_War_II» 5 World
War II

HYPERLINK «» \l «Opening_moves» 5.1
Opening moves

HYPERLINK «» \l «Path_to_defeat» 5.2
Path to defeat

HYPERLINK «» \l «Defeat_and_death» 5.3
Defeat and death

HYPERLINK «» \l «Legacy» 6 Legacy

«Hitler.27s_religious_beliefs» 7 Hitler’s religious beliefs

HYPERLINK «» \l «Medical_health» 8
Medical health

HYPERLINK «» \l «Hitler.27s_family» 9
Hitler’s family

«People_associated_with_Hitler» 10 People associated with Hitler

HYPERLINK «» \l «Trivia» 11 Trivia

HYPERLINK «» \l «Hitler_in_various_media»
12 Hitler in various media

HYPERLINK «» \l «Movie_clip» 12.1 Movie

HYPERLINK «» \l «Films» 12.2 Films

HYPERLINK «» \l «Documentaries» 12.3

HYPERLINK «» \l «Dramatizations» 12.4

HYPERLINK «» \l «Further_reading» 12.5
Further reading

«Speeches_and_talk_by_Hitler» 12.6 Speeches and talk by Hitler

HYPERLINK «» \l «See_also» 13 See also

HYPERLINK «» \l «References» 14

HYPERLINK «» \l «External_links» 15
External links

Early years

Childhood and heritage

Adolf Hitler as an infant.

Adolf Hitler was born on HYPERLINK
«» \o «April 20» April 20 ,
HYPERLINK «» \o «1889» 1889 at
HYPERLINK «» \o «Braunau am
Inn» Braunau am Inn , HYPERLINK
«» \o «Austria» Austria , a small
town in HYPERLINK «» \o
«Upper Austria» Upper Austria , on the border with HYPERLINK
«» \o «Germany» Germany . He was
the third son and the fourth of six children of HYPERLINK
«» \o «Alois Hitler» Alois
Hitler (born Schicklgruber) (1837–1903), a minor HYPERLINK
«» \o «Customs (tax)»
customs official, and HYPERLINK
«» \o «Klara Poelzl» Klara
Poelzl (1860–1907), his second cousin, and third wife. Because of the
close kinship of the two, a papal dispensation had to be obtained for
the marriage. Of Alois and Klara’s six children, only Adolf and his
younger sister HYPERLINK «»
\o «Paula Hitler» Paula reached adulthood. Alois Hitler also had a son
«Alois Hitler, Jr.» Alois Junior ) and a daughter ( HYPERLINK
«» \o «Angela Hitler» Angela
) by his second wife.

Alois was born illegitimate and for the first thirty-nine years of his
life bore his mother’s name, Schicklgruber. In 1876, Alois began using
the name of his HYPERLINK «» \o
«Stepfather» stepfather , HYPERLINK
«» \o «Johann Georg
Hiedler» Johann Georg Hiedler , after visiting a priest responsible for
\o «Births, deaths and marriages registry» birth registries and
declaring that Georg was his father (Alois gave the impression that
Georg was still alive but he was long dead). The name was variously
spelled Hiedler, Huetler, Huettler and Hitler and probably changed to
«Hitler» by a clerk. About the origin of the name there are two

From HYPERLINK «» \o
«German language» German Hittler and similar, «one who lives in a
hut», «shepherd».

From HYPERLINK «» \o
«Slavic languages» Slavic Hidlar and Hidlarcek.

Later, Adolf Hitler was accused by his political enemies of not
rightfully being a Hitler, but a Schicklgruber. This was also exploited
in Allied HYPERLINK «» \o
«Propaganda» propaganda during the Second World War when HYPERLINK
«» \o «Pamphlet» pamphlets
bearing the phrase «Heil Schicklgruber» were HYPERLINK
«» \o «Airdrop» airdropped over
German cities.[ HYPERLINK
«» \o
«Wikipedia:Citing sources» citation needed ] Adolf was legally born a
Hitler, however, and was also closely related to Hiedler through his
maternal grandmother, HYPERLINK
«» \o «Johanna Hiedler»
Johanna Hiedler .

Hitler’s given name, «Adolf», comes from the HYPERLINK
«» \o «Old High German» Old
High German for «noble wolf» («Adel»=»nobility» + «wolf»). HYPERLINK
«» \l «_note-0» \o «» [1] Hence, not
surprisingly, one of Hitler’s self-given nicknames was Wolf or Herr Wolf
— he began using this nickname in the early 1920s and was addressed by
it only by intimates (as «Uncle Wolf» by the Wagners) up until the fall
of the Third Reich. HYPERLINK «» \l
«_note-1» \o «» [2] The names of his various HYPERLINK
«» \o «Headquarters»
headquarters scattered throughout HYPERLINK
«» \o «Continental
Europe» continental Europe ( HYPERLINK
«» \o «Wolfsschanze»
Wolfsschanze in HYPERLINK «»
\o «East Prussia» East Prussia , Wolfsschlucht in HYPERLINK
«» \o «France» France , Werwolf in
HYPERLINK «» \o «Ukraine» Ukraine ,
etc.) seem to reflect this.

Hitler was not sure who his paternal grandfather was, but it was
probably either Johann Georg Hiedler or his brother HYPERLINK
«» \o «Johann Nepomuk
Hiedler» Johann Nepomuk Hiedler . There have been rumours that Hitler
was one-quarter HYPERLINK «» \o «Jew»
\o «» [1] and that
his paternal grandmother, HYPERLINK
«» \o «Maria
Schicklgruber» Maria Schicklgruber , had become pregnant after working
as a servant in a Jewish household in HYPERLINK
«» \o «Graz, Austria» Graz
. During the 1920s, the implications of these rumours along with his
known family history were politically explosive, especially for the
proponent of a HYPERLINK «» \o
«Racism» racist HYPERLINK «» \o
«Ideology» ideology . Opponents tried to prove that Hitler, the leader
of the HYPERLINK «» \o
«Anti-Semitic» anti-Semitic HYPERLINK
«» \o «Nazi Party» Nazi Party ,
had Jewish or HYPERLINK «» \o
«Czech people» Czech ancestors. Although these rumours were never
confirmed, for Hitler they were reason enough to conceal his origins.
HYPERLINK «» \o «Soviet Union»
Soviet propaganda insisted Hitler was a Jew, though more modern
research tends to diminish the probability that he had Jewish ancestors.
According to Robert G. L. Waite in The Psychopathic God: Adolf Hitler,
Hitler made it illegal for German women to work in Jewish households,
and after the Anschluss with Austria, Hitler had his father’s hometown
obliterated as an artillery practice area. Hitler seemed to fear that he
was Jewish, and as Waite points out, this fact is more important than
whether he actually was.

Because of Alois Hitler’s profession, his family moved frequently, from
HYPERLINK «» \o «Braunau» Braunau
to HYPERLINK «» \o «Passau» Passau
, Lambach, HYPERLINK «» \o
«Leonding» Leonding , and HYPERLINK
«» \o «Linz» Linz . As a young child,
Hitler was reportedly a good student at the various HYPERLINK
«» \o «Elementary school»
elementary schools he attended; however, in HYPERLINK
«» \o «Sixth grade» sixth grade
(1900–1), his first year of HYPERLINK
«» \o «High school» high school
(Realschule) in Linz, he failed completely and had to repeat the grade.
His teachers reported that he had «no desire to work.»

Hitler later explained this educational slump as a kind of HYPERLINK
«» \o «Rebellion» rebellion
against his father Alois, who wanted the boy to follow him in a career
as a customs official, although Adolf wanted to become a HYPERLINK
«» \o «Painter» painter . This
explanation is further supported by Hitler’s later description of
himself as a misunderstood artist. However, after Alois died on
HYPERLINK «» \o «January 3»
January 3 , HYPERLINK «» \o «1903»
1903 , when Adolf was 13, Hitler’s schoolwork did not improve. At the
age of 16, Hitler left school with no HYPERLINK
«» \o
«Professional certification» qualifications .

Early adulthood in Vienna and Munich

From 1905 onward, Hitler was able to live the life of a HYPERLINK
«» \o «Bohemianism» Bohemian
on a fatherless child’s HYPERLINK
«» \o «Pension» pension and
support from his mother. He was rejected twice by the HYPERLINK
«» \o «Academy
of Fine Arts Vienna» Academy of Fine Arts Vienna (1907 – 1908) due to
«unfitness for painting», and was told his abilities lay rather in the
field of HYPERLINK «» \o
«Architecture» architecture . His own memoirs reflect a fascination
with the subject:

«The purpose of my trip was to study the picture gallery in the Court
Museum, but I had eyes for scarcely anything but the Museum itself. From
morning until late at night, I ran from one object of interest to
another, but it was always the buildings which held my primary
interest.» (Mein Kampf, Chapter II, paragraph 3).

Following the school rector’s recommendation, he too became convinced
this was the path to pursue, yet he lacked the proper academic
preparation for HYPERLINK «»
\o «Architecture» architecture school:

«In a few days I myself knew that I should some day become an architect.
To be sure, it was an incredibly hard road; for the studies I had
neglected out of spite at the Realschule were sorely needed. One could
not attend the Academy’s architectural school without having attended
the building school at the Technic, and the latter required a
high-school degree. I had none of all this. The fulfillment of my
artistic dream seemed physically impossible.»»(Mein Kampf, Chapter II,
paragraph 5 & 6).

On HYPERLINK «» \o «December
21» December 21 , HYPERLINK «» \o
«1907» 1907 , his mother Klara died a painful death from HYPERLINK
«» \o «Breast cancer» breast
cancer at the age of 47. Hitler gave his share of the HYPERLINK
«» \o «Orphan» orphans ‘ benefits to
his younger sister HYPERLINK
«» \o «Paula Hitler» Paula ,
but when he was 21 he inherited some money from an HYPERLINK
«» \o «Aunt» aunt . He worked as a
struggling painter in Vienna, copying scenes from HYPERLINK
«» \o «Postcard» postcards and
selling his paintings to HYPERLINK
«» \o «Merchant» merchants and
tourists (there is evidence he produced over 2000 paintings and drawings
before HYPERLINK «» \o «World
War I» World War I ). Several biographers have noted that a Jewish
resident of the house named Hanisch helped him sell his postcards.[
«Wikipedia:Citing sources» citation needed ]

A watercolour by Adolf Hitler depicting HYPERLINK
«» \o «Laon» Laon , HYPERLINK
«» \o «France» France .

After the second refusal from the Academy of Arts, Hitler gradually ran
out of money. By 1909, he sought refuge in a HYPERLINK
«» \o «Homeless shelter»
homeless shelter , and by the beginning of 1910 had settled permanently
into a house for poor working men.

It was in Vienna that Hitler first became an active anti-Semite, or so
he says. Nothing Hitler wrote should be accepted at face value, and his
early childhood was likely awash in antisemitism. Still, it is true that
antisemitism was in the air in Vienna, mixing traditional religious
prejudice with recent racist theories. Vienna had a large Jewish
community, including many HYPERLINK
«» \o «Orthodox Jews»
Orthodox Jews from HYPERLINK
«» \o «Eastern Europe»
Eastern Europe . (See HYPERLINK
«» \o «History of Vienna»
History of Vienna .) Hitler was influenced over time by the writings of
the race ideologist and anti-Semite HYPERLINK
«» \o «Lanz von
Liebenfels» Lanz von Liebenfels and HYPERLINK
«» \o «Polemic» polemics from
HYPERLINK «» \o «Politician»
politicians such as HYPERLINK
«» \o «Karl Lueger» Karl Lueger
, founder of the HYPERLINK
«» \o «Christian
Social Party» Christian Social Party and HYPERLINK
«» \o «List of
mayors of Vienna» mayor of Vienna , one of the most outrageous
demagogues in history. and HYPERLINK
«» \o «Georg
Ritter von Schoenerer» Georg Ritter von Schoenerer , leader of the
pan-Germanic Away from Rome! movement. He later wrote in his book
HYPERLINK «» \o «Mein Kampf»
Mein Kampf that his transition from opposing anti-Semitism on religious
grounds to supporting it on racial grounds came from having seen an
HYPERLINK «» \o «Orthodox
Judaism» Orthodox Jew :

«There were very few Jews in Linz. In the course of centuries the Jews
who lived there had become HYPERLINK
«» \o «Europeanization»
Europeanized in external appearance and were so much like other human
beings that I even looked upon them as Germans. The reason why I did not
then perceive the absurdity of such an illusion was that the only
external mark which I recognized as distinguishing them from us was the
practice of their strange religion. As I thought that they were
persecuted on account of their faith my aversion to hearing remarks
against them grew almost into a feeling of abhorrence. I did not in the
least suspect that there could be such a thing as a systematic

Once, when passing through the inner City, I suddenly encountered a
phenomenon in a long caftan and wearing black side-locks. My first
thought was: Is this a Jew? They certainly did not have this appearance
in Linz. I carefully watched the man stealthily and cautiously but the
longer I gazed at the strange countenance and examined it feature by
feature, the more the question shaped itself in my brain: Is this a

(Mein Kampf, vol. 1, chap. 2: «Years of study and suffering in Vienna»)

Hitler began to claim the Jews were natural enemies of what he called
the HYPERLINK «» \o «Aryan
race» Aryan race . He held them responsible for Austria’s crisis. He
also identified certain forms of HYPERLINK
«» \o «Socialism» Socialism and
especially HYPERLINK «» \o
«Communism» Bolshevism , which had many Jews among its leaders, as
Jewish movements, merging his anti-Semitism with anti-Marxism. Blaming
Germany’s military defeat on the 1917 Revolutions, he considered Jews
the culprit of Imperial Germany’s military defeat and subsequent
economic problems as well.

Generalising from tumultuous scenes in the parliament of the
multi-national HYPERLINK
«» \o «Austria-Hungary»
Austria Monarchy , he developed a firm belief in the inferiority of the
democratic HYPERLINK
«» \o «Parliamentary
system» parliamentary system , which formed the basis of his political
views. However, according to HYPERLINK
«» \o «August Kubizek»
August Kubizek , his close friend and HYPERLINK
«» \o «Roommate» roommate at the
time, he was more interested in the HYPERLINK
«» \o «Opera» operas of HYPERLINK
«» \o «Richard Wagner»
Richard Wagner than in HYPERLINK
«» \o «Politics» politics .

A landscape painted by Adolf Hitler.

Hitler received the final part of his father’s estate in May 1913 and
moved to HYPERLINK «» \o «Munich»
Munich . He later wrote in HYPERLINK
«» \o «Mein Kampf» Mein Kampf
that he had always longed to live in a «real» German city. In Munich, he
became more interested in architecture and the writings of HYPERLINK
«» \o «Houston
Stewart Chamberlain» Houston Stewart Chamberlain . Moving to Munich
also helped him escape HYPERLINK
«» \o «Conscription» military
service in Austria for a time, but the Austrian army later arrested
him. After a physical exam (during which his height was measured at 173
cm, or 5 ft 8 in) and a contrite plea, he was deemed unfit for service
and allowed to return to Munich. However, when Germany entered
HYPERLINK «» \o «World War I»
World War I in August 1914, he immediately petitioned King Ludwig III
of Bavaria for permission to serve in a Bavarian regiment, this request
was granted, and Adolf Hitler enlisted in the HYPERLINK
«» \o «Bavaria» Bavarian army.
HYPERLINK «» \l «_note-2» \o «» [3]

World War I

Hitler saw active service in HYPERLINK
«» \o «France» France and
HYPERLINK «» \o «Belgium» Belgium
as a messenger for the regimental headquarters of the 16th Bavarian
Reserve HYPERLINK «» \o
«Regiment» Regiment (also called Regiment List after its first
commander), which exposed him to enemy fire. Unlike his fellow soldiers,
Hitler reportedly never complained about the food or hard conditions,
preferring to talk about HYPERLINK «»
\o «Art» art or HYPERLINK «» \o
«History» history . He also drew some HYPERLINK
«» \o «Cartoon» cartoons and
HYPERLINK «» \o «Instruction»
instructional drawings for the army newspaper. His behaviour as a
soldier was considered somewhat sloppy, but his regular duties required
taking dispatches to and from fighting areas and he was twice decorated
for his performance of these duties. He received the HYPERLINK
«» \o «Iron Cross» Iron Cross ,
Second Class in December 1914 and the Iron Cross, First Class in August
1918, an honour rarely given to a HYPERLINK
«» \o «Gefreiter» Gefreiter .
However, because of the perception of «a lack of leadership skills» on
the part of some of the regimental staff, as well as (according to
Kershaw) Hitler’s unwillingness to leave regimental headquarters (which
would have been likely in event of promotion), he was never promoted to
«Unteroffizier» Unteroffizier . Other historians, however, say that the
reason he was not promoted is that he did not have German citizenship.
His duty station at regimental headquarters, while often dangerous, gave
Hitler time to pursue his artwork. During October 1916 in northern
France, Hitler was HYPERLINK «» \o
«Wound» wounded in the leg, but returned to the front in March 1917.
He received the HYPERLINK «»
\o «Wound Badge» Wound Badge later that year, as his injury was the
direct result of hostile fire. HYPERLINK
«» \o «Sebastian Haffner»
Sebastian Haffner , referring to Hitler’s experience at the front,
suggests he did have at least some understanding of the military.

On HYPERLINK «» \o «October 15»
October 15 , HYPERLINK «» \o «1918»
1918 , shortly before the end of the war, Hitler was admitted to a
HYPERLINK «» \o «Field
hospital» field hospital , temporarily HYPERLINK
«» \o «Blindness» blinded by a
HYPERLINK «» \o «Poison gas»
poison gas attack. Research by Bernhard Horstmann indicates the
blindness may have been the result of a HYPERLINK
«» \o «Hysterical» hysterical
reaction to Germany’s defeat. Hitler later said it was during this
experience that he became convinced the purpose of his life was to «save

Some scholars, including Lucy Dawidowicz HYPERLINK
«» \l «_note-3» \o «» [4] , argue that an
intention to mass murder Europe’s Jews was fully formed in Hitler’s
mind, though he probably hadn’t thought through how it could be done.

Two passages in HYPERLINK «» \o
«Mein Kampf» Mein Kampf mention the use of HYPERLINK
«» \o «Poison gas» poison gas :

At the beginning of the Great War, or even during the War, if twelve or
fifteen thousand of these Jews who were corrupting the nation had been
forced to submit to poison-gas . . . then the millions of sacrifices
made at the front would not have been in vain. (Volume 2, Chapter 15
«The Right to Self-Defence»).

These tactics are based on an accurate estimation of human weakness and
must lead to success, with almost mathematical certainty, unless the
other side also learns how to fight poison gas with poison gas. The
weaker natures must be told that here it is a case of to be or not to
be. (Volume 1, Chapter 2 «Years of Study and Suffering in Vienna»)

Hitler had long admired Germany, and during the war he had become a
passionate German HYPERLINK «»
\o «Patriotism» patriot , although he did not become a German citizen
until 1932. He was shocked by Germany’s HYPERLINK
«» \o «Capitulation»
capitulation in November 1918 even while the German army still held
enemy territory. Like many other German HYPERLINK
«» \o «Nationalism»
nationalists , Hitler believed in the HYPERLINK
«» \o
«Dolchstosslegende» Dolchstosslegende («dagger-stab legend») which
claimed that the army, «undefeated in the field,» had been «stabbed in
the back» by civilian leaders and Marxists back on the HYPERLINK
«» \o «Home front» home front .
These politicians were later dubbed the HYPERLINK
«» \o «November
Criminals» November Criminals .

«Treaty of Versailles» Treaty of Versailles deprived Germany of
various territories, HYPERLINK
«» \o «Demilitarization»
demilitarized the HYPERLINK «»
\o «Rhineland» Rhineland and imposed other economically damaging
sanctions. The treaty also declared Germany the culprit for all the
horrors of the Great War, as a basis for later imposing not yet
specified reparations on Germany (the amount was repeatedly revised
under the HYPERLINK «» \o
«Dawes Plan» Dawes Plan , HYPERLINK
«» \o «Young Plan» Young Plan
and the HYPERLINK «» \o
«Hoover Moratorium» Hoover Moratorium ). Germans, however, perceived
the treaty and especially the paragraph on the German guilt as a
humiliation, not least as it was damaging in the extreme to their pride.
For example, there was nearly a full demilitarisation of the armed
forces, allowing Germany only 6 battleships, no submarines, no air
force, an army of 100,000 without HYPERLINK
«» \o «Conscription»
conscription and no armoured vehicles. The treaty was an important
factor in both the social and political conditions encountered by Hitler
and his National Socialist Party as they sought power. Hitler and his
party used the signing of the treaty by the «November Criminals» as a
reason to build up Germany so that it could never happen again. He also
used the ‘November Criminals’ as scapegoats, although at the Paris peace
conference, these politicians had very little choice in the matter.

The early years of the Nazi Party

A copy of Adolf Hitler’s forged HYPERLINK
«» \o «German
Workers’ Party» DAP membership card. His actual membership number was
555 (the 55th member of the party — the 500 was added to make the group
appear larger) but later the number was reduced to create the impression
that Hitler was one of the founding members (Ian Kershaw Hubris). Hitler
had wanted to create his own party, but was ordered by his superiors in
the Reichswehr to infiltrate an existing one instead.

Hitler’s entry into politics

Main article: HYPERLINK
«» \o «Hitler’s
political beliefs» Hitler’s political beliefs

After the First World War, Hitler remained in the army, which was mainly
engaged in suppressing HYPERLINK
«» \o «Communist» communist
uprisings breaking out across Germany, including Munich (the HYPERLINK
«» \o «Bavarian
Soviet Republic» Bavarian Soviet Republic ), where Hitler returned in
1919. He took part in «national thinking» courses organized by the
Education and Propaganda Department (Dept Ib/P) of the Bavarian
Reichswehr Group, Headquarters 4 under Captain HYPERLINK
«» \o «Karl Mayr» Karl Mayr . A
key purpose of this group was to create a HYPERLINK
«» \l
«Political.2FSociological_Scapegoating» \o «Scapegoat» scapegoat [
«Wikipedia:Citing sources» citation needed ] for the outbreak of the
war and Germany’s defeat. The scapegoats were found in «international
Jewry», communists, and politicians across the party spectrum,
especially the parties of the HYPERLINK
«» \o «Weimar Coalition»
Weimar Coalition , who were deemed » HYPERLINK
«» \o «November
Criminals» November Criminals «. In July 1919, Hitler was appointed a
Verbindungsmann (police spy) of an Aufklaerungskommando (Intelligence
Commando) of the HYPERLINK «»
\o «Reichswehr» Reichswehr , for the purpose of influencing other
soldiers toward similar ideas and was assigned to HYPERLINK
«» \o «Infiltration»
infiltrate a small party, the HYPERLINK
«» \o «German
Workers’ Party» German Workers’ Party (DAP), which was thought of to
be a possibly HYPERLINK «» \o
«Socialist» socialist party. During his HYPERLINK
Workers%27_Party» \o «Adolf Hitler’s inspection of the German Workers’
Party» inspection of the party , Hitler was impressed with HYPERLINK
«» \o «Anton Drexler» Drexler
‘s HYPERLINK «» \o
«Anti-Semitic» anti-Semitic , HYPERLINK
«» \o «Nationalist» nationalist
and anti- HYPERLINK «» \o
«Marxist» Marxist ideas, which favoured an HYPERLINK
«» \o «Hegelian» Hegelian concept
of the strong universally present state, a «non-Jewish» version of
socialism and mutual solidarity of all members of society. Here Hitler
also met HYPERLINK «» \o
«Dietrich Eckart» Dietrich Eckart , one of the early founders of the
party and member of the occult HYPERLINK
«» \o «Thule Society» Thule
Society . HYPERLINK «» \l «_note-4» \o «»
[5] Eckart became Hitler’s mentor, exchanging ideas with him, teaching
him how to dress and speak, and introducing him to a wide range of
people. Hitler in return thanked Eckart by paying tribute to him in the
second volume of Mein Kampf.

Hitler was discharged from the army in March 1920 and with his former
superiors’ continued encouragement began participating full time in the
party’s activities. By early 1921, Adolf Hitler was becoming highly
effective at speaking in front of even larger crowds. In February,
Hitler spoke before a crowd of nearly six thousand in HYPERLINK
«» \o «Munich» Munich . To publicize
the meeting, he sent out two truckloads of Party supporters to drive
around with HYPERLINK «» \o
«Swastika» swastikas , cause a commotion and throw out HYPERLINK
«» \o «Leaflet» leaflets , their
first use of this tactic. Hitler gained notoriety outside of the Party
for his rowdy, HYPERLINK «» \o
«Polemic» polemic speeches against the Treaty of Versailles, rival
politicians (including monarchists, nationalists and other
non-internationalist socialists) and especially against Marxists and

The German Workers’ Party was centered in Munich which had become a
hotbed of German nationalists who included Army officers determined to
crush Marxism and undermine or even overthrow the young German democracy
centred in Berlin. Gradually they noticed Adolf Hitler and his growing
movement as a vehicle to hitch themselves to. Hitler traveled to Berlin
to visit nationalist groups during the summer of 1921 and in his absence
there was an unexpected HYPERLINK
«» \o «Revolt» revolt among the DAP
leadership in Munich.

The Party was run by an executive HYPERLINK
«» \o «Committee» committee
whose original members considered Hitler to be overbearing and even
HYPERLINK «» \o «Dictatorial»
dictatorial . To weaken Hitler’s position they formed an HYPERLINK
«» \o «wiktionary:alliance»
alliance with a group of socialists from HYPERLINK
«» \o «Augsburg» Augsburg . Hitler
rushed back to Munich and countered them by tendering his HYPERLINK
«» \o «Resignation» resignation
from the Party on HYPERLINK «» \o
«July 11» July 11 , HYPERLINK «» \o
«1921» 1921 . When they realized the loss of Hitler would effectively
mean the end of the Party, he seized the moment and announced he would
return on the condition that he was made chairman and given dictatorial
powers. Infuriated committee members (including founder HYPERLINK
«» \o «Anton Drexler» Anton
Drexler ) held out at first. Meanwhile an HYPERLINK
«» \o «Anonymous» anonymous
HYPERLINK «» \o «Pamphlet»
pamphlet appeared entitled Adolf Hitler: Is he a HYPERLINK
«» \o «Traitor» traitor ?,
attacking Hitler’s lust for power and criticizing the violence-prone men
around him. Hitler responded to its publication in a Munich newspaper by
HYPERLINK «» \o «Lawsuit» suing
for HYPERLINK «» \o «Libel» libel
and later won a small settlement.

The executive committee of the DAP eventually backed down and Hitler’s
demands were put to a vote of party members. Hitler received 543 votes
for and only one against. At the next gathering on HYPERLINK
«» \o «July 29» July 29 ,
HYPERLINK «» \o «1921» 1921 , Adolf
Hitler was introduced as HYPERLINK
«» \o «Fuehrer» Fuehrer of the
National Socialist Party, marking the first time this title was publicly
used. Hitler changed the name of the party to the National Socialist
German Workers Party (Nationalsozialistische Deutsche Arbeiterpartei or

Hitler’s beer hall HYPERLINK «» \o
«Oratory» oratory , attacking Jews, HYPERLINK
«» \o «Social democracy»
social democrats , HYPERLINK «»
\o «Liberalism» liberals , reactionary HYPERLINK
«» \o «Monarchist» monarchists ,
HYPERLINK «» \o «Capitalism»
capitalists and HYPERLINK «» \o
«Communism» communists , began attracting adherents. Early followers
included HYPERLINK «» \o
«Rudolf Hess» Rudolf Hess , the former air force pilot HYPERLINK
«» \o «Hermann Goering»
Hermann Goering , and the flamboyant army HYPERLINK
«» \o «Captain» captain
HYPERLINK «» \o «Ernst
Roehm» Ernst Roehm , who became head of the Nazis’ HYPERLINK
«» \o
«Paramilitary organizations» paramilitary organization , the
«Sturmabteilung» SA , which protected meetings and attacked political
opponents. He also attracted the attention of local business interests,
was accepted into influential circles of Munich society and became
associated with wartime General HYPERLINK
«» \o «Erich Ludendorff»
Erich Ludendorff during this time.

The Beer Hall Putsch

Main article: HYPERLINK
«» \o «Beer Hall Putsch»
Beer Hall Putsch

Encouraged by this early support, Hitler decided to use Ludendorff as a
front in an HYPERLINK «» \o «Coup»
attempt to seize power later known as the HYPERLINK
«» \o «Beer Hall Putsch»
Beer Hall Putsch (and sometimes as the Hitler Putsch or Munich Putsch).
The Nazi Party had copied the Italian HYPERLINK
«» \o «Fascism» Fascists in
appearance and also had adopted some programmatical points and now, in
the turbulent year 1923, Hitler wanted to emulate HYPERLINK
«» \o «Benito Mussolini»
Mussolini’s » HYPERLINK «»
\o «March on Rome» March on Rome » by staging his own «Campaign in
Berlin». Hitler and Ludendorff obtained the clandestine support of
HYPERLINK «» \o «Gustav von
Kahr» Gustav von Kahr , HYPERLINK
«» \o «Bavaria» Bavaria ‘s
HYPERLINK «» \o «De facto» de
facto ruler along with leading figures in the HYPERLINK
«» \o «Reichswehr» Reichswehr
and the police. As political posters show, Ludendorff, Hitler and the
heads of the Bavarian police and military planned on forming a new

However on HYPERLINK «» \o
«November 8» November 8 , HYPERLINK
«» \o «1923» 1923 Kahr and the
military withdrew their support during a meeting in the
Buergerbraeukeller, a large beer hall outside of Munich. A surprised
Hitler had them arrested and proceeded with the coup. Unknown to him,
Kahr and the other detainees had been released on Ludendorff’s orders
after he obtained their word not to interfere. That night they prepared
resistance measures against the coup and in the morning, when Hitler and
his followers marched from the beer hall to the Bavarian War Ministry to
overthrow the Bavarian government as a start to their «March on Berlin,»
the army quickly dispersed them (Ludendorff was wounded and a few other
Nazis were killed).

Hitler fled to the home of HYPERLINK
«» \o «Ernst Hanfstaengl»
friends and contemplated suicide. He was soon arrested for HYPERLINK
«» \o «High treason» high
treason and appointed HYPERLINK
«» \o «Alfred Rosenberg»
Alfred Rosenberg as temporary leader of the party but found himself in
an environment somewhat receptive to his beliefs. During Hitler’s trial,
sympathetic magistrates allowed Hitler to turn his debacle into a
HYPERLINK «» \o «Propaganda»
propaganda stunt. He was given almost unlimited amounts of time to
present his arguments to the court along with a large body of the German
people, and his popularity soared when he voiced basic nationalistic
sentiments shared by the public. On HYPERLINK
«» \o «April 1» April 1 ,
HYPERLINK «» \o «1924» 1924 Hitler
was sentenced to five years’ imprisonment at HYPERLINK
«» \o «Landsberg prison»
Landsberg prison for the crime of conspiracy to commit treason. Hitler
received favoured treatment from the guards and had much fan mail from
HYPERLINK «» \o «Fan
(aficionado)» admirers . As he was considered relatively harmless,
Hitler was released on December 20 HYPERLINK
«» \o «1924» 1924 .

«Mein Kampf»

While at Landsberg he dictated his political book HYPERLINK
«» \o «Mein Kampf» Mein Kampf
(My Struggle) to his deputy HYPERLINK
«» \o «Rudolf Hess» Rudolf Hess
. The book, dedicated to HYPERLINK
«» \o «Thule Society» Thule
Society member HYPERLINK
«» \o «Dietrich Eckart»
Dietrich Eckart , was both an autobiography and an exposition of his
political ideology. It was published in two volumes in 1925 and 1926
respectively, but did not sell very well until Hitler came to power
(though by the late 1930s nearly every household in Germany had a copy
of it). Hitler spent years dodging taxes on the income from his book. By
1934 he had accumulated about 405,500 Reichsmarks (6m euros) in
backtaxes, all of which were waived once he became chancellor.
HYPERLINK «» \l «_note-5» \o «» [6] .

The rebuilding of the party

At the time of Hitler’s release, the political situation in Germany had
calmed down, and the economy had improved, which hampered Hitler’s
opportunities for agitation. Instead, he began a long effort to rebuild
the dwindling party.

Though the Hitler Putsch had given Hitler some national prominence, his
party’s mainstay was still Munich. To spread the party to the north,
Hitler also assimilated independent groups, such as the Nuremberg-based
Wistrich, led by HYPERLINK
«» \o «Julius Streicher»
Julius Streicher , who now became HYPERLINK
«» \o «Gauleiter» Gauleiter of
HYPERLINK «» \o «Franconia»
Franconia .

As Hitler was still banned from public speeches, he appointed
HYPERLINK «» \o «Gregor
Strasser» Gregor Strasser , who in 1924 had been elected to the
«Reichstag (institution)» Reichstag , as Reichsorganisationsleiter,
authorizing him to organise the party in northern Germany. Gregor,
joined by his younger brother HYPERLINK
«» \o «Otto Strasser» Otto
and HYPERLINK «» \o
«Joseph Goebbels» Joseph Goebbels , steered an increasingly independent
course, emphasizing the socialist element in the party’s programme. The
Arbeitsgemeinschaft der Gauleiter Nord-West became an internal
opposition, threatening Hitler’s authority, but this faction was
defeated at the HYPERLINK
&action=edit» \o «Bamberg Conference (1926)» Bamberg Conference (1926)
, during which Goebbels joined Hitler.

After this encounter, Hitler centralized the party even more and
asserted the HYPERLINK
«» \o «Fuehrerprinzip»
Fuehrerprinzip as the basic principle of party organization. Leaders
were not elected by their group but were rather appointed by their
superior and were answerable to them while demanding unquestioning
obedience from their inferiors. Consistent with Hitler’s disdain for
HYPERLINK «» \o «Democracy»
democracy , all power and HYPERLINK
«» \o «Authority» authority
devolved from the top down.

A key element of Hitler’s appeal was his ability to convey a sense of
offended national pride caused by the HYPERLINK
«» \o «Treaty of
Versailles» Treaty of Versailles imposed on the defeated HYPERLINK
«» \o «Second Reich» German
Empire by the HYPERLINK
«» \o «Allies of World
War I» Entente . Germany had lost economically important territory in
Europe along with its HYPERLINK «»
\o «Colony» colonies and in admitting to sole responsibility for the
war had agreed to pay a huge HYPERLINK
«» \o «Reparations» reparations
bill totaling 32 billion HYPERLINK
«» \o «German gold mark»
mark . Most Germans bitterly resented these terms but early Nazi
attempts to gain support by blaming these humiliations on «international
Jewry» were not particularly successful with the electorate. The party
learned quickly and soon a more subtle propaganda emerged, combining
anti-Semitism with an attack on the failures of the » HYPERLINK
«» \o «Weimar» Weimar system» and
the parties supporting it.

Having failed in overthrowing the Republic by a coup, Hitler now pursued
the «strategy of legality»: this meant formally adhering to the rules of
the HYPERLINK «» \o
«Weimar Republic» Weimar Republic until he had legally gained power
and then to transform liberal democracy into an authoritarian
dictatorship. Some party members, especially in the paramilitary
«Sturmabteilung» SA , opposed this strategy and HYPERLINK
«» \o «Ernst Roehm» Ernst
Roehm ridiculed Hitler as «Adolphe Legalite».

The road to power

Main article: HYPERLINK
«» \o «Hitler’s
rise to power» Hitler’s rise to power

The Bruening administration

The political turning point for Hitler came when the HYPERLINK
«» \o «Great Depression»
Great Depression hit Germany in 1930. The HYPERLINK
«» \o «Weimar Republic»
Weimar Republic had never been firmly rooted and was openly opposed by
right-wing conservatives (including monarchists), Communists and the
Nazis. As the parties loyal to the democratic, parliamentary republic
found themselves unable to agree on counter-measures, their HYPERLINK
«» \o «Grand Coalition»
Grand Coalition broke up and was replaced by a minority cabinet. The
new Chancellor HYPERLINK
«» \o «Heinrich
Bruening» Heinrich Bruening of the Roman Catholic HYPERLINK
«» \o «Centre Party» Centre
Party , lacking a majority in parliament, had to implement his measures
through the President’s emergency decrees. Tolerated by the majority of
parties, the exception soon became the rule and paved the way for
authoritarian forms of government.

The Reichstag’s initial opposition to Bruening’s measures led to
premature elections in September 1930. The republican parties lost their
majority and their ability to resume the Grand Coalition, while the
Nazis suddenly rose from relative obscurity to win 18.3% of the vote
along with 107 seats in the HYPERLINK
«» \o «Reichstag
(institution)» Reichstag , becoming the second largest party in

Hitler emerges from the Brown House in Munich (headquarters of the Nazi
party during the last days of the Weimar Republic) after a post-election
meeting in 1930.

Bruening’s measure of budget consolidation and financial HYPERLINK
«» \o «Austerity» austerity
brought little economic improvement and was extremely unpopular. Under
these circumstances, Hitler appealed to the bulk of German HYPERLINK
«» \o «Farmer» farmers , HYPERLINK
«» \o «War veteran» war
veterans and the HYPERLINK
«» \o «Middle-class»
middle-class who had been hard-hit by both the HYPERLINK
«» \o «Inflation» inflation of
the 1920s and the HYPERLINK
«» \o «Unemployment»
unemployment of the Depression. Hitler received little response from
the HYPERLINK «» \o «Urban
area» urban working classes and traditionally Catholic regions.

Meanwhile on HYPERLINK «» \o
«September 18» September 18 , HYPERLINK
«» \o «1931» 1931 Hitler’s
HYPERLINK «» \o «Niece» niece
HYPERLINK «» \o «Geli Raubal»
Geli Raubal was found dead in her bedroom in his Munich apartment (his
half-sister HYPERLINK «» \o
«Angela Hitler» Angela and her daughter Geli had been with him in
Munich since 1929), an apparent suicide. Geli was 19 years younger than
he was and had used his gun, drawing rumours of a relationship between
the two. The event is viewed as having caused lasting turmoil for him.

In 1932 Hitler intended to run against the aging HYPERLINK
«» \o «President of
Germany» President HYPERLINK
«» \o «Paul von
Hindenburg» Paul von Hindenburg in the scheduled HYPERLINK
«» \o
«German presidential election, 1932» presidential elections . Though
Hitler had left Austria in 1913, he still had not acquired German
citizenship and hence could not run for public office. In February
however, the state government of HYPERLINK
«» \o
«Brunswick-Lueneburg» Brunswick , in which the Nazi Party participated,
appointed Hitler to some minor administrative post and also gave him
citizenship. The new German citizen ran against Hindenburg, who was
supported by a broad range of reactionary nationalist, monarchist,
Catholic, Republican and even HYPERLINK
«» \o «Social Democracy»
social democratic parties, and against the Communist presidential
candidate. His campaign was called «Hitler ueber Deutschland» (Hitler
over Germany). The name had a double meaning.

Hitler over Germany. Political campaign by airplane.

Besides an obvious reference to Hitler’s dictatorial intentions, it also
referred to the fact that Hitler was campaigning by airplane. This was a
brand new political tactic that allowed Hitler to speak in two cities in
one day, which was practically unheard of at the time. Hitler came in
second on both rounds, attaining more than 35% of the vote during the
second one in April. Although he lost to Hindenburg, the election
established Hitler as a realistic and fresh alternative in German

The cabinets of Papen and Schleicher

President Hindenburg, influenced by the HYPERLINK
«» \o «Camarilla
(history)» Camarilla , became increasingly estranged from Bruening and
pushed his Chancellor to move the government in a decidedly
authoritarian and right-wing direction. This culminated in May 1932 with
the resignation of the Bruening cabinet.

Hindenburg appointed the nobleman HYPERLINK
«» \o «Franz von Papen»
Franz von Papen as chancellor, heading a «cabinet of barons». Papen was
bent on authoritarian rule and since in the Reichstag only the
conservative HYPERLINK
«» \o
«German National People’s Party» DNVP supported his administration, he
immediately called for new elections in July. In these elections, the
Nazis achieved their biggest success yet and won 230 seats.

The Nazis had become the largest party in the Reichstag without which no
stable government could be formed. Papen tried to convince Hitler to
become Vice-Chancellor and enter a new government with a parliamentary
basis. Hitler however rejected this offer and put further pressure on
Papen by entertaining parallel negotiations with the HYPERLINK
«» \o «Centre
Party (Germany)» Centre Party , Papen’s former party, which was bent on
bringing down the renegade Papen. In both negotiations Hitler demanded
that he, as leader of the strongest party, must be Chancellor, but
President Hindenburg consistently refused to appoint the «Bohemian
private» to the Chancellorship.

After a HYPERLINK «»
\o «Vote of no-confidence» vote of no-confidence in the Papen
government, supported by 84% of the deputies, the new Reichstag was
dissolved and new elections were called in November. This time, the
Nazis lost some votes but still remained the largest party in the

After Papen failed to secure a majority he proposed to dissolve the
parliament again along with an indefinite postponement of elections.
Hindenburg at first accepted this, but after General HYPERLINK
«» \o «Kurt von
Schleicher» Kurt von Schleicher and the military withdrew their
support, Hindenburg instead dismissed Papen and appointed Schleicher,
who promised he could secure a majority government by negotiations with
both the Social Democrats, the trade unions, and dissidents from the
Nazi party under HYPERLINK
«» \o «Gregor Strasser»
Gregor Strasser . In January 1933 however, Schleicher had to admit
failure in these efforts and asked Hindenburg for emergency powers along
with the same postponement of elections that he had opposed earlier, to
which the President reacted by dismissing Schleicher.

Hitler’s appointment as Chancellor

Meanwhile Papen, resentful because of his dismissal, tried to get his
revenge on Schleicher by working toward the General’s downfall, through
forming an intrigue with the HYPERLINK
«» \o «Camarilla
(history)» camarilla and HYPERLINK
«» \o «Alfred Hugenberg»
Alfred Hugenberg , media mogul and chairman of the HYPERLINK
«» \o
«German National People’s Party» DNVP . Also involved were HYPERLINK
«» \o «Hjalmar Schacht»
Hjalmar Schacht , HYPERLINK
«» \o «Fritz Thyssen» Fritz
Thyssen and other leading German businessmen. They financially
supported the Nazi Party, which had been brought to the brink of
bankruptcy by the cost of heavy campaigning. The businessmen also wrote
letters to Hindenburg, urging him to appoint Hitler as leader of a
government «independent from parliamentary parties» which could turn
into a movement that would «enrapture millions of people.» HYPERLINK
«» \l «_note-6» \o «» [7]

Finally, the President reluctantly agreed to appoint Hitler Chancellor
of a coalition government formed by the HYPERLINK
«» \o «DNVP» DNVP . Hitler and two
other Nazi ministers ( HYPERLINK
«» \o «Wilhelm Frick» Frick ,
«Hermann Goering» Goering ) were to be contained by a framework of
conservative cabinet ministers, most notably by Papen as HYPERLINK
«» \o
«Vice-Chancellor of Germany» Vice-Chancellor and by Hugenberg as
Minister of Economics. Papen wanted to use Hitler as a figure-head, but
the Nazis had gained key positions, most notably the Ministry of the
Interior. On the morning of HYPERLINK
«» \o «January 30» January 30 ,
HYPERLINK «» \o «1933» 1933 , in
Hindenburg’s office, Adolf Hitler was sworn in as HYPERLINK
«» \o «Chancellor» Chancellor
during what some observers later described as a brief and simple

Reichstag Fire and the March elections

Having become Chancellor, Hitler foiled all attempts to gain a majority
in parliament and on that basis convinced President Hindenburg to
dissolve the Reichstag again. Elections were scheduled for early March,
but on HYPERLINK «» \o
«February 27» February 27 , HYPERLINK
«» \o «1933» 1933 , the HYPERLINK
«» \o «Reichstag fire»
Reichstag building was set on fire . Since a HYPERLINK
«» \o «Marinus van der
Lubbe» Dutch independent communist was found in the building, the fire
was blamed on a Communist plot to which the government reacted with the
«Reichstag Fire Decree» Reichstag Fire Decree of HYPERLINK
«» \o «February 28» February 28
, which suspended basic rights, including HYPERLINK
«» \o «Habeas corpus» habeas
corpus . Under the provisions of this decree, the HYPERLINK
«» \o «Communist
Party of Germany» Communist Party and other groups were suppressed,
and Communist functionaries and deputies were arrested, put to flight,
or murdered.

Day of Potsdam

Campaigning continued, with the Nazis making use of paramilitary
violence, anti-Communist hysteria, and the government’s resources for
propaganda. On election day, HYPERLINK
«» \o «March 6» March 6 , the NSDAP
increased its result to 43.9% of the vote, remaining the largest party,
but its victory was marred by its failure to secure an absolute
majority. Hitler had to maintain his HYPERLINK
«» \o «Coalition» coalition with
«» \o
«German National People’s Party» DNVP , as the coalition had a slim

The «Day of Potsdam» and the Enabling Act

On HYPERLINK «» \o «March 21» 21
March , the new Reichstag was constituted itself with an impressive
opening ceremony held at Potsdam’s garrison church. This «Day of
Potsdam» was staged to demonstrate reconciliation and union between the
revolutionary Nazi movement and «Old Prussia» with its elites and
virtues. Hitler himself appeared not in Nazi uniform but in a tail coat,
and humbly greeted the aged President Hindenburg.

Because of the Nazis’ failure to obtain a majority on their own,
Hitler’s government confronted the newly elected HYPERLINK
«» \o «Reichstag
(institution)» Reichstag with the HYPERLINK
«» \o «Enabling Act» Enabling
Act that would have vested the cabinet with HYPERLINK
«» \o «Legislative» legislative
powers for a period of four years. Though such a bill was not
unprecedented, this act was different since it allowed for deviations
from the constitution. As the bill required a two-thirds majority in
order to pass, the government needed the support of other parties. The
position of the Catholic HYPERLINK
«» \o «Centre
Party (Germany)» Centre Party , at this point the third largest party
in the Reichstag, turned out to be decisive: under the leadership of
HYPERLINK «» \o «Ludwig Kaas»
Ludwig Kaas , the party decided to vote for the Enabling Act. It did so
in return for the government’s oral guarantees regarding the HYPERLINK
«» \o «Roman Catholic
Church» Church ‘s liberty, the concordats signed by German states and
the continued existence of the Centre Party itself.

On HYPERLINK «» \o «March 23» 23
March , the Reichstag assembled in a replacement building under
extremely turbulent circumstances. Some HYPERLINK
«» \o «Sturmabteilung» SA
men served as guards within while large groups outside the building
shouted slogans and threats toward the arriving deputies. Kaas announced
that the Centre would support the bill amid «concerns put aside.», while
Social Democrat HYPERLINK «» \o
«Otto Wels» Otto Wels denounced the Act in his speech. At the end of
the day, all parties except the HYPERLINK
«» \o
«Social Democratic Party of Germany» Social Democrats voted in favour
of the bill. The HYPERLINK «»
\o «Enabling Act» Enabling Act was dutifully renewed every four years,
even through HYPERLINK «» \o
«World War II» World War II .

Removal of remaining limits

With this combination of legislative and HYPERLINK
«» \o «Executive
(government)» executive power, Hitler’s government further suppressed
the remaining political HYPERLINK
«» \o «Opposition
(politics)» opposition . The HYPERLINK
«» \o «Communist
Party of Germany» KPD and the HYPERLINK
«» \o
«Social Democratic Party of Germany» SPD were banned, while all other
political parties dissolved themselves. HYPERLINK
«» \o «Trade Union» Labour
unions were merged with employers’ federations into an organisation
under Nazi control and the autonomy of state governments was abolished.

Adolf Hitler in HYPERLINK
«» \o «Triumph of the
Will» Triumph of the Will .

Hitler also used the HYPERLINK
«» \o «Sturmabteilung» SA
paramilitary to push Hugenberg into resigning and proceeded to
politically isolate Vice Chancellor Papen. As the SA’s demands for
political and military power caused much anxiety among the populace in
general and especially among the military, Hitler used allegations of a
plot by the SA leader HYPERLINK
«» \o «Ernst Roehm» Ernst
Roehm to purge the paramilitary force’s leadership during the
«Night of the Long Knives» Night of the Long Knives . Opponents
unconnected with the HYPERLINK
«» \o «Sturmabteilung» SA
were also HYPERLINK «» \o «Murder»
murdered , notably HYPERLINK
«» \o «Gregor Strasser»
Gregor Strasser and former Chancellor HYPERLINK
«» \o «Kurt von
Schleicher» Kurt von Schleicher .

Soon after, president HYPERLINK
«» \o «Paul von
Hindenburg» Paul von Hindenburg died on HYPERLINK
«» \o «August 2» 2 August
HYPERLINK «» \o «1934» 1934 . Rather
than holding new presidential elections, Hitler’s cabinet passed a law
proclaiming the presidency dormant and transferred the role and powers
of the head of state to Hitler as Fuehrer und Reichskanzler (leader and
chancellor). Thereby Hitler also became supreme commander of the
military, which swore their military HYPERLINK
«» \o «Oath» oath not to the state or
the constitution but to Hitler personally. In a mid-August HYPERLINK
«» \o «Plebiscite» plebiscite
these acts found the approval of 90% of the electorate. Combining the
highest offices in state, military and party in his hand, Hitler had
attained supreme rule that could no longer be legally challenged.

The Third Reich

Main article: HYPERLINK «» \o
«Nazi Germany» Nazi Germany

Photographs like the one on the cover of HYPERLINK
«» \o «Heinrich Hoffmann»
Heinrich Hoffmann ‘s book of photography were used to HYPERLINK
«» \o «Promotion
(marketing)» promote Hitler’s populist- HYPERLINK
«» \o «Nationalist» nationalist
(Voelkisch) image.

Having secured supreme political power, Hitler went on to gain their
support by HYPERLINK «» \o
«Persuasion» persuading most Germans he was their saviour from the
Depression, the HYPERLINK «» \o
«Communists» Communists , the HYPERLINK
«» \o «Versailles Treaty»
Versailles Treaty , and the HYPERLINK
«» \o «Jews» Jews along with other
«undesirable» HYPERLINK «» \o
«Minorities» minorities .

Economics and culture

Hitler oversaw one of the greatest expansions of industrial production
and civil improvement Germany had ever seen, mostly based on debt
flotation and expansion of the military. Nazi policies toward women
strongly encouraged them to stay at home to bear children and keep
house. In a September 1934 speech to the National Socialist Women’s
Organization, Adolf Hitler argued that for the German woman her “world
is her husband, her family, her children, and her home,” a policy which
was reinforced by the bestowing of the Cross of Honor of the German
Mother on women bearing four or more babies. The HYPERLINK
«» \o «Unemployment»
unemployment rate was cut substantially, mostly through arms production
and sending women home so that men could take their jobs. Given this,
claims that the HYPERLINK
«» \o «Economy of
Germany» German economy achieved near HYPERLINK
«» \o «Full employment»
full employment are at least partly artifacts of HYPERLINK
«» \o «Propaganda» propaganda
from the HYPERLINK «» \o «Era» era .
Much of the financing for Hitler’s reconstruction and rearmament came
from currency manipulation by HYPERLINK
«» \o «Hjalmar Schacht»
Hjalmar Schacht , including the clouded credits through the HYPERLINK
«» \o «Mefo bills» Mefo bills .
The negative effects of this HYPERLINK
«» \o «Inflation» inflation were
offset in later years by the acquisition of foreign HYPERLINK
«» \o «Gold» gold from the treasuries
of conquered nations.

Another popular photo theme was Hitler and his dog HYPERLINK
«» \o «Blondi» Blondi , here seen at
the terrace of the HYPERLINK
«» \o «Berghof
(Hitler)» Berghof .

Hitler also oversaw one of the largest infrastructure improvement
campaigns in German history, with the construction of dozens of
HYPERLINK «» \o «Dam» dams ,
HYPERLINK «» \o «Autobahn»
autobahns , HYPERLINK «» \o
«Railroad» railroads and other civil works. Hitler’s HYPERLINK
«» \o «Policy» policies emphasised
the importance of family life: men were the «breadwinners», while
women’s priorities were to lie in bringing up children and in household
work. This revitalising of industry and infrastructure came at the
expense of the overall standard of living, at least for those not
affected by the chronic unemployment of the later Weimar Republic, since
wages were slightly reduced in pre-war years despite a 25% increase in
the cost of living HYPERLINK
«» \o
«The rise and fall of the third reich» (Shirer 1959) .

Hitler’s government HYPERLINK
«» \o «Sponsorship» sponsored
HYPERLINK «» \o «Architecture»
architecture on an immense scale, with HYPERLINK
«» \o «Albert Speer» Albert
Speer becoming famous as the first architect of the Reich. While
important as an Architect in implementing Hitler’s classicist
reinterpretation of German culture, Speer would prove much more
effective as armaments minister during the last years of WWII. In 1936
Berlin hosted the HYPERLINK
«» \o «1936 Summer
Olympics» summer Olympic games , which were opened by Hitler and
HYPERLINK «» \o «Choreography»
choreographed to demonstrate HYPERLINK
«» \o «Aryan» Aryan superiority over
all other races, achieved mixed results. HYPERLINK
«» \o «Olympia (film)»
Olympia , the movie about the games and documentary propaganda films for
the German Nazi Party were directed by Hitler’s personal filmmaker
HYPERLINK «» \o «Leni
Riefenstahl» Leni Riefenstahl .

Although Hitler made plans for a HYPERLINK
«» \o «Breitspurbahn»
Breitspurbahn ( HYPERLINK «»
\o «Broad gauge» broad gauge railroad network), they were pre-empted
by World War II. Had the railroad been built, its gauge would have been
three metres, even wider than the old HYPERLINK
«» \o «Great Western
Railway» Great Western Railway of Britain.

Hitler contributed to the design of the HYPERLINK
«» \o «Car» car that later became the
«Volkswagen Beetle» Volkswagen Beetle , and charged HYPERLINK
«» \o «Ferdinand Porsche»
Ferdinand Porsche with its construction. HYPERLINK
«» \l «_note-7» \o «» [8]

Rearmament and new alliances

Main article: HYPERLINK
«» \o «Tripartite Treaty»
Tripartite Treaty

Axis Powers signing with HYPERLINK
«» \o «Saburo Kurusu» Saburo
Kurusu ( HYPERLINK «» \o «Japan»
Japan ‘s Ambassador to Germany), HYPERLINK
«» \o «Galeazzo Ciano»
Galeazzo Ciano ( HYPERLINK «» \o
«Italy» Italy ‘s Foreign Minister) and Adolf Hitler.

In March 1935 Hitler repudiated the HYPERLINK
«» \o «Treaty of
Versailles» Treaty of Versailles by reintroducing HYPERLINK
«» \o «Conscription»
conscription in Germany. He set about building a massive military
machine, including a new Navy (the HYPERLINK
«» \o «Kriegsmarine»
Kriegsmarine ) and an Air Force (the HYPERLINK
«» \o «Luftwaffe» Luftwaffe ).
The enlistment of vast numbers of men and women in the new military
seemed to solve HYPERLINK «»
\o «Unemployment» unemployment problems but seriously distorted the
economy. For the first time in a generation, Germany’s armed forces were
as strong as those of her neighbour, HYPERLINK
«» \o «France» France .

In March 1936 Hitler again violated the HYPERLINK
«» \o «Treaty of
Versailles» Treaty of Versailles by reoccupying the HYPERLINK
«» \o «Demilitarized
zone» demilitarized zone in the HYPERLINK
«» \o «Rhineland» Rhineland .
When HYPERLINK «» \o
«United Kingdom» Britain and France did nothing, he grew bolder. In
July 1936 the HYPERLINK
«» \o «Spanish Civil War»
Spanish Civil War began when the military, led by General HYPERLINK
«» \o «Francisco Franco»
Francisco Franco , rebelled against the elected HYPERLINK
«» \o «Popular
Front (Spain)» Popular Front government of HYPERLINK
«» \o «Spain» Spain . Hitler sent
troops to support Franco and Spain served as a testing ground for
Germany’s new armed forces and their methods, including the bombing of
undefended towns such as HYPERLINK
«» \o «Guernica (city)»
Guernica , which was destroyed by the Luftwaffe in April 1937, prompting
HYPERLINK «» \o «Pablo
Picasso» Pablo Picasso ‘s famous HYPERLINK
«» \o «Eponym» eponymous painting
\o «Guernica (painting)» Guernica ).

An HYPERLINK «» \o «Axis
Powers» Axis was declared between Germany and Italy by HYPERLINK
«» \o «Galeazzo Ciano»
Galeazzo Ciano , HYPERLINK
«» \o «Foreign minister»
foreign minister of HYPERLINK «»
\o «Fascist» Fascist HYPERLINK
«» \o «Dictator» dictator
HYPERLINK «» \o «Benito
Mussolini» Benito Mussolini on HYPERLINK
«» \o «October 25» October 25 ,
HYPERLINK «» \o «1936» 1936 .
«Tripartite Treaty» Tripartite Treaty was then signed by HYPERLINK
«» \o «Saburo Kurusu» Saburo
Kurusu of HYPERLINK «» \o
«Imperial Japan» Imperial Japan , Adolf Hitler of HYPERLINK
«» \o «Nazi Germany» Nazi
Germany and Galeazzo Ciano of HYPERLINK
«» \o «Fascist Italy» Fascist
Italy in HYPERLINK «» \o
«September 27» September 27 , HYPERLINK
«» \o «1940» 1940 and was later
expanded to include HYPERLINK «»
\o «Hungary» Hungary , HYPERLINK
«» \o «Romania» Romania and
HYPERLINK «» \o «Bulgaria»
Bulgaria . They were collectively known as the HYPERLINK
«» \o «Axis Powers» Axis Powers
. Then on HYPERLINK «» \o
«November 5» November 5 , HYPERLINK
«» \o «1937» 1937 , at the HYPERLINK
«» \o «Reich Chancellory»
Reich Chancellory , Adolf Hitler held a secret meeting and stated his
plans for acquiring «living space» ( HYPERLINK
«» \o «Lebensraum» Lebensraum )
for the German people.

The Holocaust

Main article: HYPERLINK «» \o
«Holocaust» Holocaust

Adolf Hitler with HYPERLINK
«» \o «Heinrich Himmler»
Heinrich Himmler , chief of the HYPERLINK
«» \o «Schutzstaffel» SS

Between 1939 and 1945 the SS, assisted by HYPERLINK
«» \o «Collaborationist»
collaborationist governments and recruits from HYPERLINK
«» \o «Military
occupation» occupied countries, systematically killed about 11 million
people, including about 6 million Jews HYPERLINK
«» \l «_note-8» \o «» [9] , in HYPERLINK
«» \o «Concentration
camp» concentration camps , HYPERLINK
«» \o «Ghetto» ghettos and mass
HYPERLINK «» \o «Execution»
executions , or through less systematic methods elsewhere. Besides being
gassed to death, many also died of HYPERLINK
«» \o «Starvation» starvation
and HYPERLINK «» \o «Disease»
disease while working as HYPERLINK
«» \o «Slave labour» slave
labourers (sometimes benefiting private companies in the process,
because of the low cost of such labour). Along with Jews, non-Jewish
HYPERLINK «» \o «Poland» Poles
(over 3 million of whom died), alleged HYPERLINK
«» \o «Communist» communists or
political opposition, members of resistance groups, resisting
HYPERLINK «» \o «Roman
Catholics» Roman Catholics and HYPERLINK
«» \o «Protestants» Protestants
«Homosexuality» homosexuals , HYPERLINK
«» \o «Roma (people)»
Roma , the physically HYPERLINK
«» \o «Disability» handicapped
and mentally HYPERLINK «» \o
«Retarded» retarded , HYPERLINK
«» \o «Soviet Union» Soviet
HYPERLINK «» \o «Prisoner of
war» prisoners of war , HYPERLINK
\o «Jehovah’s Witnesses and the Holocaust» Jehovah’s Witnesses ,
anti-Nazi HYPERLINK «» \o «Clergy»
clergy , HYPERLINK «» \o
«Trade union» trade unionists , and HYPERLINK
«» \o «Psychiatric» psychiatric
HYPERLINK «» \o «Patient»
patients were killed. This industrial-scale HYPERLINK
«» \o «Genocide» genocide in
Europe is referred to as the HYPERLINK
«» \o «Holocaust» Holocaust (the
term is also used by some HYPERLINK
«» \o «Author» authors in a
narrower sense, to refer specifically to the unprecedented destruction
of European Jewry in particular).

The massacres that led to the coining of the word » HYPERLINK
«» \o «Genocide» genocide » (the
HYPERLINK «» \o «Final
Solution» Endloesung der juedischen Frage or » HYPERLINK
«» \o «Final Solution» Final
Solution of the Jewish Question «) were planned and ordered by leading
Nazis, with HYPERLINK «»
\o «Heinrich Himmler» Himmler playing a key role. While no specific
order from Hitler authorizing the mass killing of the Jews has surfaced,
there is documentation showing that he approved the HYPERLINK
«» \o «Einsatzgruppen»
Einsatzgruppen and the evidence also suggests that sometime in the fall
of 1941 Himmler and Hitler agreed in principle on mass extermination by
gassing. During HYPERLINK «»
\o «Interrogation» interrogations by Soviet HYPERLINK
«» \o «Intelligence
officer» intelligence officers declassified over fifty years later,
Hitler’s HYPERLINK «» \o «Valet»
valet HYPERLINK «» \o «Heinz
Linge» Heinz Linge and his military HYPERLINK
«» \o «Aide» aide Otto Gunsche said
Hitler had «pored over the first HYPERLINK
«» \o «Blueprint» blueprints of
HYPERLINK «» \o «Gas chamber»
gas chambers .»

To make for smoother intra-governmental HYPERLINK
«» \o «Cooperation» cooperation
in the implementation of this «Final Solution» to the «Jewish
question», the HYPERLINK
«» \o «Wannsee
conference» Wannsee conference was held near Berlin on HYPERLINK
«» \o «January 20» January 20 ,
HYPERLINK «» \o «1942» 1942 , with
fifteen senior officials participating, led by HYPERLINK
«» \o «Reinhard Heydrich»
Reinhard Heydrich and HYPERLINK
«» \o «Adolf Eichmann» Adolf
Eichmann . The records of this meeting provide the clearest evidence of
central planning for the Holocaust. Days later, on HYPERLINK
«» \o «February 22» February 22
, Hitler was recorded saying to his closest associates, «we shall regain
our health only by eliminating the Jew».

World War II

Opening moves

Hitler with HYPERLINK «» \o
«Romania» Romanian leader HYPERLINK
«» \o «Ion Antonescu» Ion
Antonescu (far left).

Hitler inspecting units of the HYPERLINK
«» \o «Kriegsmarine»
Kriegsmarine .

On HYPERLINK «» \o «March 12»
March 12 , HYPERLINK «» \o «1938»
1938 , Hitler pressured his native HYPERLINK
«» \o «Austria» Austria into
HYPERLINK «» \o «Unification»
unification with Germany (the HYPERLINK
«» \o «Anschluss» Anschluss ) and
made a triumphal entry into HYPERLINK
«» \o «Vienna» Vienna . Next, he
intensified a crisis over the German-speaking HYPERLINK
«» \o «Sudetenland» Sudetenland
districts of HYPERLINK «»
\o «Czechoslovakia» Czechoslovakia . This led to the HYPERLINK
«» \o «Munich Agreement»
Munich Agreement of September 1938, which authorized the annexation and
immediate military occupation of these districts by Germany. As a result
of the summit, Hitler was HYPERLINK
«» \o «Time Magazine» TIME
magazine’s HYPERLINK «» \o
«Man of the Year» Man of the Year in 1938. HYPERLINK
«» \o «United Kingdom»
British HYPERLINK «» \o
«Prime minister» prime minister HYPERLINK
«» \o «Neville
Chamberlain» Neville Chamberlain hailed this agreement as «Peace in
our time», but by giving way to Hitler’s military demands Britain and
France also left Czechoslovakia to Hitler’s mercy.

Hitler ordered Germany’s army to enter HYPERLINK
«» \o «Prague» Prague on
HYPERLINK «» \o «March 10» March
10 , HYPERLINK «» \o «1939» 1939
and from HYPERLINK «» \o
«Prague Castle» Prague Castle proclaimed Bohemia and Moravia a German
«» \o
«Protectorate of Bohemia and Moravia» protectorate . After that, Hitler
was claiming territories ceded to HYPERLINK
«» \o «Second Polish
Republic» Poland under the HYPERLINK
«» \o «Treaty of
Versailles» Versailles Treaty . Britain had not been able to reach an
agreement with the HYPERLINK
«» \o «Soviet Union» Soviet
Union for an alliance against Germany, and, on HYPERLINK
«» \o «August 23» August 23 ,
HYPERLINK «» \o «1939» 1939 , Hitler
concluded a secret HYPERLINK
«» \o «Non-aggression
pact» non-aggression pact (the HYPERLINK
«» \o
«Molotov-Ribbentrop Pact» Molotov-Ribbentrop Pact ) with HYPERLINK
«» \o «Joseph Stalin» Stalin
on which it was likely agreed that the Soviet Union and Nazi Germany
would partition Poland. On HYPERLINK
«» \o «September 1» September 1
, Germany invaded the western portion of Poland. Britain and France, who
had guaranteed assistance to Poland, declared war on Germany. Not long
after this, on HYPERLINK «»
\o «September 17» September 17 , Soviet forces invaded eastern Poland.

After capturing western Poland by the end of September, Hitler built up
his forces much further during the so-called HYPERLINK
«» \o «Phony War» Phony War . In
April 1940, he ordered German forces to march into HYPERLINK
«» \o «Denmark» Denmark and
HYPERLINK «» \o «Norway» Norway . In
May 1940, Hitler ordered his forces to attack HYPERLINK
«» \o «France» France , conquering
the HYPERLINK «» \o
«Netherlands» Netherlands , HYPERLINK
«» \o «Luxembourg» Luxembourg
and HYPERLINK «» \o «Belgium»
Belgium in the process. France HYPERLINK
«» \o «Surrender» surrendered on
HYPERLINK «» \o «June 22» June 22
, HYPERLINK «» \o «1940» 1940 . This
series of victories convinced his main ally, HYPERLINK
«» \o «Benito Mussolini»
Benito Mussolini of Italy, to join the war on Hitler’s side in May

HYPERLINK «» \o «United
Kingdom» Britain , whose defeated forces had evacuated France from the
coastal town of HYPERLINK
«» \o «Dunkirk, France»
Dunkirk , continued to fight alongside Canadian forces in the
«Battle of the Atlantic» Battle of the Atlantic . After having his
overtures for peace systematically rejected by the defiant British
Government, now led by HYPERLINK
«» \o «Winston Churchill»
Winston Churchill , Hitler ordered HYPERLINK
«» \o «Bombing raid» bombing
raids on the British Isles, leading to the HYPERLINK
«» \o «Battle of Britain»
Battle of Britain , a HYPERLINK «»
\o «Prelude» prelude of the planned German invasion. The attacks began
by pounding the HYPERLINK
«» \o «Royal Air Force» RAF
airbases and the HYPERLINK «» \o
«Radar» radar stations protecting South-East England. However, the
HYPERLINK «» \o «Luftwaffe»
Luftwaffe failed to defeat the HYPERLINK
«» \o «Royal Air Force» RAF
by the end of October 1940. Air superiority for the invasion,
code-named HYPERLINK «»
\o «Operation Sealion» Operation Sealion , could not be assured and
Hitler ordered bombing raids to be carried out on British cities,
including HYPERLINK «» \o «London»
London and HYPERLINK «» \o
«Coventry» Coventry , mostly at night.

Adolf Hitler inspecting German HYPERLINK
«» \o «U-Boot» submarines together
with Hungarian admiral HYPERLINK «»
\o «Horthy» Horthy .

Path to defeat

On HYPERLINK «» \o «June 22» June
22 , HYPERLINK «» \o «1941» 1941 ,
Hitler gave the signal for three million German troops to attack the
HYPERLINK «» \o «Soviet Union»
Soviet Union , breaking the HYPERLINK
«» \o «Non-aggression
pact» non-aggression pact he had concluded with Stalin less than two
years earlier. This invasion, code-named HYPERLINK
«» \o «Operation
Barbarossa» Operation Barbarossa , seized huge amounts of territory,
including the HYPERLINK «»
\o «Baltic region» Baltic states, HYPERLINK
«» \o «Belarus» Belarus , and
HYPERLINK «» \o «Ukraine» Ukraine ,
along with the HYPERLINK «»
\o «Encirclement» encirclement and destruction of many Soviet forces.
German forces, however, were stopped short of HYPERLINK
«» \o «Moscow» Moscow in December
1941 by the Russian HYPERLINK
«» \o «General Winter»
winter and fierce Soviet resistance (see HYPERLINK
«» \o «Battle of Moscow»
Battle of Moscow ), and the invasion failed to achieve the quick triumph
over the Soviet Union which Hitler had anticipated.

Hitler’s declaration of war against the HYPERLINK
«» \o «United States» United
States on HYPERLINK «» \o
«December 11» December 11 , HYPERLINK
«» \o «1941» 1941 , (which arguably
was called for by Germany’s treaty with HYPERLINK
«» \o «Japan» Japan ) set him against
a coalition that included the world’s largest empire (the HYPERLINK
«» \o «British Empire»
British Empire ), the world’s greatest industrial and financial power
(the HYPERLINK «» \o «United
States» USA ), and the world’s largest army (the HYPERLINK
«» \o «Soviet Union» Soviet
Union ).

In May 1942 HYPERLINK «»
\o «Reinhard Heydrich» Reinhard Heydrich , one of the highest
HYPERLINK «» \o «SS» SS officers and
one of Hitler’s favorite subordinates, was HYPERLINK
«» \o «Operation
Anthropoid» assassinated by British-trained Czech operatives in Prague
. Hitler reacted by ordering brutal reprisals, including the massacre of
HYPERLINK «» \o «Lidice» Lidice .

Adolf Hitler discussing the war strategy with HYPERLINK
«» \o «Erwin Rommel» Erwin
Rommel (left, facing Hitler) amidst other HYPERLINK
«» \o
«Generalfeldmarschall» German Field Marshals .

In late 1942, German forces under HYPERLINK
«» \o «Field Marshal»
Feldmarschall HYPERLINK «»
\o «Erwin Rommel» Erwin Rommel were defeated in the HYPERLINK
«» \o «Second
Battle of El Alamein» second battle of El Alamein , thwarting Hitler’s
plans to seize the HYPERLINK «»
\o «Suez Canal» Suez Canal and the HYPERLINK
«» \o «Middle East» Middle East
. In February of 1943, the lengthy HYPERLINK
«» \o «Battle of
Stalingrad» Battle of Stalingrad ended with the complete encirclement
and destruction of the German HYPERLINK
«» \o «German Sixth Army»
6th Army . Both defeats were turning points in the war, although the
latter is more commonly considered primary. From this point on, the
quality of Hitler’s military judgment became increasingly HYPERLINK
«» \o «Erratic» erratic and
Germany’s military and economic position deteriorated. Hitler’s health
was deteriorating too. His left hand started shaking uncontrollably. The
biographer HYPERLINK «» \o
«Ian Kershaw» Ian Kershaw believes he suffered from HYPERLINK
«» \o «Parkinson’s
disease» Parkinson’s disease . Other conditions that are suspected by
some to have caused some (at least) of his symptoms are HYPERLINK
«» \o «Methamphetamine»
methamphetamine HYPERLINK «» \o
«Addiction» addiction and HYPERLINK
«» \o «Syphilis» syphilis .

Hitler’s ally HYPERLINK
«» \o «Benito Mussolini»
Benito Mussolini was overthrown in 1943 after HYPERLINK
«» \o «Operation Husky»
Operation Husky , an American and British invasion of HYPERLINK
«» \o «Sicily» Sicily . Throughout
1943 and 1944, the HYPERLINK
«» \o «Soviet Union» Soviet
Union steadily forced Hitler’s armies into retreat along the
«» \o
«Eastern Front (World War II)» eastern front . On HYPERLINK
«» \o «June 6» June 6 , HYPERLINK
«» \o «1944» 1944 the Western allied
armies landed in northern France in what was the largest HYPERLINK
«» \o «Amphibious
warfare» amphibious operation ever conducted, HYPERLINK
«» \o «Operation
Overlord» Operation Overlord . Realists in the German army knew defeat
was inevitable and some officers plotted to remove Hitler from power. In
July 1944 one of them, HYPERLINK
«» \o «Claus von
Stauffenberg» Claus von Stauffenberg , planted a HYPERLINK
«» \o «Bomb» bomb at Hitler’s
military headquarters in HYPERLINK
«» \o «Rastenburg» Rastenburg
(the so-called HYPERLINK «»
\o «July 20 Plot» July 20 Plot ), but Hitler narrowly escaped death. He
ordered savage reprisals, resulting in the executions of more than 4,900
people HYPERLINK «» \l «_note-9» \o «»
[10] (sometimes by starvation in solitary confinement followed by slow
«Strangulation» strangulation ). The main resistance movement was
destroyed although smaller isolated groups such as HYPERLINK
«» \o «Die Rote Kapelle»
Die Rote Kapelle continued to operate.

Defeat and death

Main article: HYPERLINK
«» \o «Hitler’s death»
Hitler’s death

Cover of US newspaper The Stars and Stripes, May 1945

By the end of 1944, the HYPERLINK
«» \o «Red Army» Red Army had
driven the last German troops from Soviet territory and began charging
into Central Europe. The HYPERLINK
«» \o «Western Allies»
western allies were also rapidly advancing into Germany. The Germans
had lost the war from a military perspective, but Hitler allowed no
negotiation with the Allied forces, and as a consequence the German
military forces continued to fight. Hitler’s stubbornness and defiance
of military realities also allowed the continued mass killing of Jews
and others to continue. He even issued the HYPERLINK
«» \o «Nero Decree» Nero Decree
on HYPERLINK «» \o «March 19»
March 19 , HYPERLINK «» \o «1945»
1945 , ordering the destruction of what remained of German industry,
communications and transport. However, HYPERLINK
«» \o «Albert Speer» Albert
Speer , who was in charge of that plan, didn’t carry it out. (The
HYPERLINK «» \o «Morgenthau
Plan» Morgenthau Plan for postwar Germany, promulgated by the Allies,
aimed at a similar deindustrialization.)

In April 1945 Soviet forces were at the HYPERLINK
«» \o «Battle of Berlin»
gates of Berlin . Hitler’s closest lieutenants urged him to flee to
HYPERLINK «» \o «Bavaria» Bavaria
or Austria to make a last stand in the mountains, but he seemed
determined to either live or die in the capital. HYPERLINK
«» \o «Schutzstaffel» SS
leader HYPERLINK «» \o
«Heinrich Himmler» Heinrich Himmler tried on his own to inform the
Allies (through the HYPERLINK «» \o
«Sweden» Swedish HYPERLINK «»
\o «Diplomat» diplomat Count HYPERLINK
«» \o «Folke Bernadotte»
Folke Bernadotte ) that Germany was prepared to discuss surrender terms.
Meanwhile HYPERLINK «»
\o «Hermann Goering» Hermann Goering sent a telegram from Bavaria in
which he argued that since Hitler was cut off in Berlin, as Hitler’s
designated successor he should assume leadership of Germany. Hitler
angrily reacted by dismissing both Himmler and Goering from all their
offices and the party and declared them traitors.

After intense HYPERLINK «»
\o «Urban warfare» street-to-street combat , when Soviet troops were
spotted within a block or two of the HYPERLINK
«» \o «Reich Chancellory»
Reich Chancellory in the city centre, Hitler committed suicide in the
«Fuehrerbunker» Fuehrerbunker on HYPERLINK
«» \o «April 30» April 30 ,
HYPERLINK «» \o «1945» 1945 by means
of a self-delivered shot to the head (it is likely he simultaneously bit
into a HYPERLINK «» \o «Cyanide»
cyanide ampoule). Hitler’s body and that of HYPERLINK
«» \o «Eva Braun» Eva Braun (his
long-term mistress whom he had married the day before) were put in a
bomb crater, partially burned with HYPERLINK
«» \o «Gasoline» gasoline by
Fuehrerbunker aides and hastily buried in the Chancellory garden as
Russian shells poured down and Red Army infantry continued to advance
only two or three hundred metres away. He also HYPERLINK
«» \o «Kill» killed his dog
HYPERLINK «» \o «Blondi» Blondi
around the same time.

When Russian forces reached the Chancellory they found his body and an
autopsy was performed using dental records (and German dental assistants
who were familiar with them) to confirm the identification. To avoid any
possibility of creating a potential shrine the remains of Hitler and
Braun were repeatedly moved, then secretly buried by HYPERLINK
«» \o «SMERSH» SMERSH at their new
headquarters in HYPERLINK «» \o
«Magdeburg» Magdeburg . In April 1970, when the facility was about to
be turned over to the East German government, the remains were
reportedly exhumed, thoroughly HYPERLINK
«» \o «Cremation» cremated , and
the ashes finally dumped unceremoniously into the HYPERLINK
«» \o «Elbe» Elbe . According to the
Russian Federal Security Service, a fragment of human skull stored in
its archives and displayed to the public in a 2000 exhibition came from
the remains of Hitler’s body uncovered by the Red Army in Berlin, and is
all that remains of Hitler; however, the authenticity of the skull has
been challenged by many historians and researchers.


At the time of Hitler’s death most of Germany’s infrastructure and major
cities were in ruins and he had left explicit orders to complete the
destruction. Millions of Germans were dead with millions more wounded or
homeless. In his HYPERLINK
«» \o «Will (law)» will he
dismissed other Nazi leaders and appointed Grand HYPERLINK
«» \o «Admiral» Admiral
HYPERLINK «» \o «Karl
Doenitz» Karl Doenitz as HYPERLINK
«» \o
«Reichspraesident» Reichspraesident (President of Germany) and
HYPERLINK «» \o «Joseph
Goebbels» Goebbels as HYPERLINK
«» \l «Reichskanzler» \o
«Reichskanzler» Reichskanzler (Chancellor of Germany). However,
Goebbels and his wife Magda committed suicide on HYPERLINK
«» \o «May 1» 1 May HYPERLINK
«» \o «1945» 1945 . On HYPERLINK
«» \o «May 7» 7 May HYPERLINK
«» \o «1945» 1945 , in HYPERLINK
«» \o «Reims, France»
Reims, France , the German armed forces HYPERLINK
«» \o «Unconditional
surrender» surrendered unconditionally to the HYPERLINK
«» \o «Western Allies»
Western Allies and on on HYPERLINK
«» \o «May 8» 8 May HYPERLINK
«» \o «1945» 1945 , in Berlin to the
HYPERLINK «» \o «Soviet Union»
Soviet Union thus HYPERLINK
«» \o «End of
World War II in Europe» ending the war in Europe and with the creation
of the HYPERLINK «»
\o «Allied Control Council» Allied Control Council on HYPERLINK
«» \o «June 5» 5 June HYPERLINK
«» \o «1945» 1945 , the Four Powers
assumed «supreme authority with respect to Germany.» Adolf Hitler’s
proclaimed Thousand Year Reich had lasted 12 years.

Since the defeat of Germany in World War II, Hitler, the Nazi Party and
«» \o
«Consequences of German Nazism» results of Nazism have been regarded
in most of the world as synonymous with HYPERLINK
«» \o «Evil» evil . Historical and
«Hitler in popular culture» cultural portrayals of Hitler in the west
are, by virtually universal consensus, condemnatory.

The copyright of Hitler’s book HYPERLINK
«» \o «Mein Kampf» Mein Kampf
in Europe is claimed by the Free State of HYPERLINK
«» \o «Bavaria» Bavaria and will
expire in 2015. Reproductions in Germany are generally authorized only
for scholarly purposes and in heavily commented form. The situation is
however unclear; Werner Maser (whom Theodor Heuss proposed to publish
«Mein Kampf» as a weapon against Nazi Ideology) comments that
intellectual property cannot be confiscated and so, it still would lie
in the hands of Hitler’s nephew, who, however, does not want to have
anything to do with Hitler’s legacy. This situation leads to contested
trials eg. in Poland and Sweden. In the USA, «Mein Kampf» is still
published, as well as in other countries like Turkey or Israel, from
publishers with various political positions.

The display of HYPERLINK «» \o
«Swastika» swastikas or other HYPERLINK
«» \o «Nazi symbolism» Nazi
symbols is prohibited in Germany and political extremists are generally
under surveillance by the HYPERLINK
«» \o «Verfassungsschutz»
Verfassungsschutz , one of the federal or state-based offices for the
protection of the constitution.

There have been instances of public figures referring to his legacy in
neutral or favourable terms, particularly in HYPERLINK
«» \o «South America» South
America , the HYPERLINK «»
\o «Islamic World» Islamic World and parts of HYPERLINK
«» \o «Asia» Asia . Future HYPERLINK
«» \o «Egypt» Egyptian President
HYPERLINK «» \o «Anwar Sadat»
Anwar Sadat wrote favourably of Hitler in 1953. HYPERLINK
«» \l «_note-10» \o «» [11] HYPERLINK
«» \o «Bal Thackeray» Bal
Thackeray , leader of the right-wing HYPERLINK
«» \o «Shiv Sena» Shiv Sena
party in the HYPERLINK «» \o «India»
Indian state of the HYPERLINK
«» \o «Maharashtra» Maharashtra
, declared in 1995 that he was an admirer of Hitler. HYPERLINK
«» \l «_note-11» \o «» [12]

Further information: HYPERLINK
«» \o
«Consequences of German Nazism» Consequences of German Nazism and
HYPERLINK «» \o «Neo-Nazism»

Hitler’s religious beliefs

Main article: HYPERLINK
«» \o
«Adolf Hitler’s religious beliefs» Adolf Hitler’s religious beliefs

Adolf Hitler was brought up in his family’s religion by his Roman
Catholic parents, but as a school boy the began to reject the Church and
Catholicism. After he had left home, he never attended HYPERLINK
«» \o «Mass (liturgy)»
Mass or received the HYPERLINK
«» \o «Sacrament» Sacraments .

In later life, Hitler’s religious beliefs present a discrepant picture:
In public statements, he frequently spoke positively about the Christian
heritage of German culture and belief in Christ. Hitler’s private
statements, reported by his intimates, are more mixed, showing Hitler as
a religious but also anti-Christian man. However, in contrast to other
Nazi leaders, Hitler did not adhere to HYPERLINK
«» \o «Esoteric» esoteric ideas,
HYPERLINK «» \o «Occultism»
occultism , or HYPERLINK «»
\o «Neo-paganism» neo-paganism , and possibly even ridiculed such
beliefs in private, but rather advocated a » HYPERLINK
«» \o «Positive
Christianity» Positive Christianity «, a belief system purged form what
he objected to in traditional Christianity, and reinvented Jesus as a
fighter against the Jews.

Hitler believed in a HYPERLINK
«» \o «Social darwinism»
social darwinist struggle for survival between the different races,
among which the «Aryan race» was supposed to be the torchbearers of
civilization and the Jews as enemies of all civilisation. Whether his
anti-semitism was influenced by older Christian ideas remains disputed.
Hitler also strongly believe that «Providence» was guiding him in this

Among Christian denominations Hitler favoured Protestantism, which was
more open to such reinterpretations, but at the same time imitated some
elements of Catholic church organization, liturgy and phraseology in his

Medical health

Main article: HYPERLINK
«» \o «Adolf
Hitler’s medical health» Adolf Hitler’s medical health

Hitler’s alleged health problems in his later years have long been the
subject of debate, and he has variously been suggested to have suffered
\o «Irritable bowel syndrome» irritable bowel syndrome , HYPERLINK
«» \o «Skin lesion» skin
lesions , HYPERLINK «»
\o «Irregular heartbeat» irregular heartbeat , tremors on the left side
of his body, HYPERLINK «» \o
«Syphilis» syphilis , HYPERLINK
«» \o «Parkinson’s
disease» Parkinson’s disease and a strongly suggested addiction to
«Methamphetamines» methamphetamines .

Most of Hitler’s biographers have characterized him as a HYPERLINK
«» \o «Vegetarian» vegetarian
who abstained from eating meat, beginning in the early 1930s until his
death (although his actual dietary habits are sometimes hotly disputed).
A fear of cancer (which his mother died from) is the most widely cited
reason, though many authors also assert Hitler had a profound and deep
love of animals. He did consume dairy products and eggs however.
HYPERLINK «» \o «Martin
Bormann» Martin Bormann constructed a large greenhouse close to the
«Berghof (Hitler)» Berghof (near HYPERLINK
«» \o «Berchtesgaden»
Berchtesgaden ) in order to ensure a steady supply of fresh fruits and
vegetables for Hitler throughout the war. Personal photographs of
Bormann’s children tending the greenhouse survive and by 2005 its
foundations were among the only ruins visible in the area which were
directly associated with Nazi leaders. For more information on this
topic, see HYPERLINK
«» \o
«Vegetarianism of Adolf Hitler» Vegetarianism of Adolf Hitler .

Hitler was also a fervent non-smoker and promoted aggressive
anti-smoking campaigns throughout Germany. He reportedly promised a gold
watch to any of his close associates who quit (and actually gave a few
away). Several witness accounts relate that, immediately after his
suicide was confirmed, many officers, aides, and secretaries in the
Fuehrerbunker lit cigarettes. HYPERLINK «»
\l «_note-12» \o «» [13] HYPERLINK «» \l
«_note-13» \o «» [14]

Contrary to popular accounts, there seems to be some evidence Hitler did
not abstain entirely from HYPERLINK
«» \o «Alcohol» alcohol . After the
war, an interrogation in the HYPERLINK
«» \o «USSR» USSR of his valet
HYPERLINK «» \o «Heinz Linge»
Heinz Linge could indicate that Hitler drank champagne now and then
with HYPERLINK «» \o «Eva Braun»
Eva Braun .[ HYPERLINK
«» \o
«Wikipedia:Citing sources» citation needed ]

Hitler’s family

Main article: HYPERLINK
«» \o «Hitler
(disambiguation)» Hitler (disambiguation)

Paula Hitler, the last living member of Adolf Hitler’s immediate family,
died in 1960.

The most prominent, and longest-living direct descendants of Adolf
Hitler’s father, Alois, was his nephew HYPERLINK
«» \o «William
Patrick Hitler» William Patrick Hitler . With his wife Phyllis, he
eventually moved to HYPERLINK
«» \o «Long Island,
New York» Long Island, New York and had four sons. None of William
Hitler’s children have yet had any children of their own.

Over the years various investigative reporters have attempted to track
down other distant relatives of the Fuehrer; many are now alleged to be
living inconspicuous lives and have long since changed their last name.

Adolf Hitler’s Genealogy

Sketch of HYPERLINK «» \o «Eva
Braun» Eva Braun by Hitler

HYPERLINK «» \o «Eva Braun» Eva
Braun , mistress and then wife

HYPERLINK «» \o «Alois
Hitler» Alois Hitler , father

HYPERLINK «» \o «Klara
Hitler» Klara Hitler , mother

HYPERLINK «» \o «Paula
Hitler» Paula Hitler , sister

HYPERLINK «» \o «Alois
Hitler, Jr.» Alois Hitler, Jr. , half-brother

HYPERLINK «» \o «Bridget
Dowling» Bridget Dowling , sister-in-law

«William Patrick Hitler» William Patrick Hitler , nephew

HYPERLINK «» \o «Heinz
Hitler» Heinz Hitler , nephew

HYPERLINK «» \o «Angela
Hitler» Angela Hitler Raubal , half-sister

HYPERLINK «» \o «Maria
Schicklgruber» Maria Schicklgruber , grandmother

«Johann Georg Hiedler» Johann Georg Hiedler , presumed grandfather

«Johann Nepomuk Hiedler» Johann Nepomuk Hiedler , maternal
great-grandfather, presumed great uncle and possibly Hitler’s true
paternal grandfather

HYPERLINK «» \o «Geli Raubal»
Geli Raubal , niece and rumoured mistress

People associated with Hitler

Main articles: HYPERLINK
\o «List of Nazi Party leaders and officials» List of Nazi Party
leaders and officials and HYPERLINK
5» \o «List of former Nazis influential after 1945» List of former
Nazis influential after 1945

HYPERLINK «» \o «Martin
Bormann» Martin Bormann , Adolf Hitler’s secretary.

«» \o
«Elisabeth Foerster-Nietzsche» Elisabeth Foerster-Nietzsche , sister of
philosopher HYPERLINK
«» \o «Friedrich
Nietzsche» Friedrich Nietzsche and Hitler supporter.

HYPERLINK «» \o «Hans Frank»
Hans Frank , Hitler’s lawyer and later senior Nazi official in occupied

HYPERLINK «» \o «Joseph
Goebbels» Joseph Goebbels , Minister of Propaganda.

«Hermann Goering» Hermann Goering , Reichsmarschall, Commander of the
Luftwaffe, founder of the Gestapo.

HYPERLINK «» \o «Rudolf Hess»
Rudolf Hess , Hitler’s deputy as party leader, best known for his flight
to Scotland to negotiate peace in 1941.

«Reinhard Heydrich» Reinhard Heydrich , chief of the Reich Main
Security Office (including the HYPERLINK
«» \o «Gestapo» Gestapo )

HYPERLINK «» \o «Heinrich
Himmler» Heinrich Himmler , leader of the SS, key figure in the
Holocaust and the «Final Solution».

«Heinrich Hoffmann» Heinrich Hoffmann , official photographer from 1920
to 1945.

HYPERLINK «» \o «Alfred Jodl»
Alfred Jodl , military officer, knew Hitler since 1923.

HYPERLINK «» \o «Wilhelm
Keitel» Wilhelm Keitel , military Field Marshal during World War II.

HYPERLINK «» \o «August
Kubizek» August Kubizek , close friend and roommate in Vienna

HYPERLINK «» \o «Leopold
Poetsch» Leopold Poetsch , Hitler’s HYPERLINK
«» \o «Anti-Semitic»
anti-Semitic school teacher

HYPERLINK «» \o «Leni
Riefenstahl» Leni Riefenstahl , friend and filmmaker who documented the
Nazi party.

HYPERLINK «» \o «Erwin
Rommel» Erwin Rommel , military Field Marshal during World War II.

HYPERLINK «» \o «Ernst
Roehm» Ernst Roehm , leader of the SA and internal critic, killed in
\o «Night of the Long Knives» Night of the Long Knives (1934).

HYPERLINK «» \o «Albert
Speer» Albert Speer , Hitler’s personal architect, Minister of
armaments. Close friend to Hitler.

HYPERLINK «» \o «Paul Troost»
Paul Troost , famous architect who served before Speer.

HYPERLINK «» \o «Winifred
Wagner» Winifred Wagner , head of the Wagner family and close friend of


A nickname for Hitler used by German soldiers was Groefaz, a derogatory
and/or sarcastic abbreviation for Groesster Feldherr aller Zeiten
(«Greatest War Lord of all Time»), a title initially publicized by Nazi
HYPERLINK «» \o «Propaganda»
propaganda after the surprisingly quick HYPERLINK
«» \o «Battle of France»
fall of France .

Hitler did not like women to wear HYPERLINK
«» \o «Cosmetics» cosmetics ,
since they contained animal by-products, and frequently teased his
mistress HYPERLINK «» \o «Eva
Braun» Eva Braun about her habit of wearing makeup. HYPERLINK
«» \l «_note-14» \o «» [15]

He almost never wore a uniform to social engagements, which he attended
frequently whenever in Berlin during the 1930s. When he did wear
uniforms, they were tailored and understated compared to those of other
prominent Nazis who often wore elaborate uniforms with extensive
decorations and medals.

According to the 2001 documentary HYPERLINK
tion=edit» \o «The Tramp and the Dictator» The Tramp and the Dictator ,
the HYPERLINK «» \o
«Charlie Chaplin» Charlie Chaplin parody/satire HYPERLINK
«» \o «The Great
Dictator» The Great Dictator was not only sent to Hitler, but an
eyewitness confirmed he did see it, twice. HYPERLINK
«» \l «_note-15» \o «» [16] . Chaplin has
been quoted as saying, «I’d have given anything to know what he thought
of it.»

Hitler was the 1938 HYPERLINK
«» \o «Time (magazine)»
«Person of the Year» Man of the Year .

Hitler’s favourite film was HYPERLINK
«» \o «King Kong
(1933)» King Kong (1933) and his favourite opera was HYPERLINK
«» \o «Richard Wagner»
Richard Wagner ‘s HYPERLINK «» \o
«Rienzi» Rienzi , of which he claimed to have seen over 40
performances. [ HYPERLINK
«» \o
«Wikipedia:Citing sources» citation needed ]

Hitler in various media

«Wikimedia Commons» Wikimedia Commons has media related to:

«commons:Category:Adolf_Hitler» Adolf Hitler

«» \o «Hitler in
popular culture» Hitler in popular culture

Movie clip

htesgaden.ogg» \o «Adolf Hitler at Berchtesgaden.ogg» Hitler at
Berchtesgaden ( HYPERLINK
\o «Image:Adolf Hitler at Berchtesgaden.ogg» file info )

Video clips of Hitler at his mountain retreat in HYPERLINK
«» \o «Berchtesgaden»
Berchtesgaden , HYPERLINK «» \o
«Germany» Germany .

Problems seeing the videos? See HYPERLINK
«» \o «Wikipedia:Media
help» media help .


During Hitler’s reign, he appeared in and was involved to varying
degrees with a series of films by the pioneering filmmaker HYPERLINK
«» \o «Leni Riefenstahl»
Leni Riefenstahl :

HYPERLINK «» \o «Der
Sieg des Glaubens» Der Sieg des Glaubens (The Victory of Faith, 1933).

«Triumph of the Will» Triumph des Willens (Triumph of the Will, 1934),
co-produced by Hitler.

HYPERLINK «» \o «Tag der
Freiheit» Tag der Freiheit: Unsere Wehrmacht (Day of Freedom: Our
Armed Forces, 1935).

«Olympia (film)» Olympia (1938).

Hitler was the central figure of the first three films, that focused on
the HYPERLINK «» \o
«Nuremberg rally» party rallies of the respective years and are
considered propaganda films, and features prominently in the Olympia
film. Whether the latter is a propaganda film or a mere documentation is
controversial, but it nonetheless perpetuated and spread the
propagandistic message of the HYPERLINK
«» \o «1936» 1936 HYPERLINK
«» \o «Olympic Games» Olympic
Games , depicting Nazi Germany as a prosperous and peaceful country.


HYPERLINK «» \o «The
World at War» The World at War (1974) is a famous HYPERLINK
«» \o «Thames Television»
Thames Television series which contains much information about Adolf
Hitler and Nazi Germany, including an interview with his secretary,
HYPERLINK «» \o «Traudl Junge»
Traudl Junge .

Adolf Hitler’s Last Days, from the BBC series «Secrets of World War II»
tells the story about Hitler’s last days during World War II.

HYPERLINK «» \o «Im toten
Winkel» Blind Spot: Hitler’s Secretary (2002) is an exclusive 90
minute interview with Traudl Junge, Hitler’s final trusted secretary.
Made by Austrian Jewish director Andre Heller shortly before Junge’s
death from lung cancer, Junge recalls the last days in the Berlin
bunker. Clips used in Downfall.


«Hitler: The Last Ten Days» Hitler: The Last Ten Days (1973) is a
movie depicting the days leading up to Adolf Hitler’s death, starring
Sir Alec Guinness.

HYPERLINK «» \o «The Bunker»
The Bunker (1978) by James O’Donnell, describing the last days in the
«Fuehrerbunker» Fuehrerbunker from HYPERLINK
«» \o «1945» 1945 — HYPERLINK
«» \o «January 17» 01-17 to
HYPERLINK «» \o «1945» 1945 —
HYPERLINK «» \o «May 2» 05-02 . Made
into the TV movie HYPERLINK «»
\l «Movie» \o «The Bunker» The Bunker (1981), starring Anthony

«Hitler: The Rise of Evil» Hitler: The Rise of Evil (2003) is a
two-part TV series about the early years of Adolf Hitler and his rise to
power (up to 1933). Stars HYPERLINK
«» \o «Robert Carlyle»
Robert Carlyle .

HYPERLINK «» \o «Der
Untergang» Der Untergang (Downfall) (2004) is a German movie about the
last days of Adolf Hitler and the Third Reich, starring HYPERLINK
«» \o «Bruno Ganz» Bruno Ganz .
This film is partly based on the autobiography of HYPERLINK
«» \o «Traudl Junge» Traudl
Junge , a favorite secretary of Hitler’s. In 2002 Junge said she felt
great guilt for «…liking the greatest criminal ever to have lived.»

HYPERLINK «» \o «»
Hans-Juergen Syberberg ‘s HYPERLINK
«» \o
«» Hitler
— Ein Film aus Deutschland (Hitler, A Film From Germany), 1977.
Originally presented on German television, this is a 7-hour work in 4
parts: The Grail; A German Dream; The End Of Winter’s Tale; We, Children
Of Hell. The director uses documentary clips, photographic backgrounds,
puppets, theatrical stages, and other elements from almost all the
visual arts, with the «actors» addressing directly the audience/camera,
in order to approach and expand on this most taboo subject of European
history of the 20th century.

HYPERLINK «» \o «Max
(film)» Max (film) is a 2002 HYPERLINK
«» \o «Drama movie» Drama movie
, that depicts a friendship between art dealer Max Rothman (who is
Jewish) and a young Adolf Hitler as a failed painter in HYPERLINK
«» \o «Vienna» Vienna .

Further reading

Main article: HYPERLINK
«» \o «List of
Adolf Hitler books» List of Adolf Hitler books

Many books have been written about Adolf Hitler with his life and legacy
thoroughly researched. See HYPERLINK
«» \o «List of
Adolf Hitler books» this list for an extensive HYPERLINK
«» \o «Annotated
bibliography» annotated bibliography , containing also a list of works
authored by Hitler.

Speeches and talk by Hitler

Main article: HYPERLINK
«» \o «List of
Adolf Hitler speeches» List of Adolf Hitler speeches

Hitler was a gifted HYPERLINK «» \o
«Orator» orator who captivated many with his beating of the lectern
and growling, emotional speech. Authentic though they may seem, Hitler’s
speeches were full of propaganda and rhetoric, used to touch a spot with
his audience as a way to persuade them. While his early speeches were
rather amateurish, over time Hitler perfected his delivery by rehearsing
in front of mirrors and carefully choreographing his display of emotions
with the message he was trying to convey. HYPERLINK
«» \l «_note-16» \o «» [17] HYPERLINK
«» \l «_note-17» \o «» [18]

See also

Further information: HYPERLINK
«» \o «Category:Adolf
Hitler» Category:Adolf Hitler

HYPERLINK «» \o «List of
Dictators» List of Dictators


HYPERLINK «» \l «_ref-0» \o «» ^
«» Origin and Popularity
of the Name «Adolph»

HYPERLINK «» \l «_ref-1» \o «» ^ Walter
C. Langer, The Mind of Adolf Hitler, p. 246 ( HYPERLINK
«» \o «Basic Books» Basic Books
: New York, 1972)

HYPERLINK «» \l «_ref-2» \o «» ^
Shirer, William L., The Rise And Fall of Adolf Hitler c 1961, Random

HYPERLINK «» \l «_ref-3» \o «» ^ The
War Against the Jews. Bantam. 1986

HYPERLINK «» \l «_ref-4» \o «» ^
Joachim C. Fest, HYPERLINK
«» \o
«» The
Drummer in The Face Of The Third Reich (London: Weidenfeld & Nicolson,
1970; URL accessed HYPERLINK «» \o
«June 11» June 11 , HYPERLINK «» \o
«2005» 2005 ).

HYPERLINK «» \l «_ref-5» \o «» ^
«» Hitler dodged
taxes, expert finds BBC News

HYPERLINK «» \l «_ref-6» \o «» ^ «Die
Uebertragung der verantwortlichen Leitung eines mit den besten
sachlichen und persoenlichen Kraeften ausgestatteten Praesidialkabinetts
an den Fuehrer der groessten nationalen Gruppe wird die Schlacken und
Fehler, die jeder Massenbewegung notgedrungen anhaften, ausmerzen und
Millionen Menschen, die heute abseits stehen, zu bejahender Kraft
mitreissen.» HYPERLINK «»
\o «» Glasnost archives

HYPERLINK «» \l «_ref-7» \o «» ^
HYPERLINK «» \o «Robert
S. Wistrich» Robert S. Wistrich ,Who’s Who in Nazi Germany (New York:
Routledge, 2002), p. 193.

HYPERLINK «» \l «_ref-8» \o «» ^ «There
is no precise figure for the number of Jews killed in the Holocaust. The
figure commonly used is the six million quoted by Adolf Eichmann, a
senior SS official. Most research confirms that the number of victims
was between five to six million.» HYPERLINK
«» \o
«» How
many Jews were murdered in the Holocaust? How do we know? Do we have
their names? ; FAQs About The Holocaust, Yad Vashem (URL accessed on
HYPERLINK «» \o «January 3»
January 3 , HYPERLINK «» \o «2006»
2006 )

«Between 1942 and 1944, Nazi Germany deported millions more Jews from
the occupied territories to extermination camps, where they murdered
them in specially developed killing facilities» HYPERLINK
«» \o
«» The
Holocaust ; Holocaust Encyclopedia, HYPERLINK
\o «United States Holocaust Memorial Museum» United States Holocaust
Memorial Museum (URL accessed on HYPERLINK
«» \o «January 3» January 3 ,
HYPERLINK «» \o «2006» 2006 ).

HYPERLINK «» \l «_ref-9» \o «» ^
Shirer, William L., Rise and Fall of the Third Reich, ch. 29, The Allied
Invasion of Western Europe and the Attempt to Kill Hitler lists 4,980.

HYPERLINK «» \l «_ref-10» \o «» ^
«» (Review, Excerpts)
Schoeman, Roy. «Salvation Is from the Jews: The Role of Judaism in
Salvation History», Ignatius Press 2004. HYPERLINK
70975X» ISBN 0-89870-975-X

HYPERLINK «» \l «_ref-11» \o «» ^
«» Portrait of a
Demagogue AsiaWeek’s interview with Bal Thackeray

HYPERLINK «» \l «_ref-12» \o «» ^
«» \o
Hitler’s Anti-Tobacco Campaign

HYPERLINK «» \l «_ref-13» \o «» ^
«John Toland (author)» John Toland , Adolf Hitler, p. 741

HYPERLINK «» \l «_ref-14» \o «» ^
HYPERLINK «» \o «Hugh
Trevor-Roper» Hugh Trevor-Roper (ed.), Hitler’s Table Talk, 1941-1944,
section 66

HYPERLINK «» \l «_ref-15» \o «» ^
tor.shtml» \o
tor.shtml» The Tramp and the Dictator . BBC. Accessed HYPERLINK
«» \o «June 22» June 22 ,
HYPERLINK «» \o «2006» 2006 .

HYPERLINK «» \l «_ref-16» \o «» ^
«» The Power of
Speech by A. E. Frauenfeld. Calvin College

HYPERLINK «» \l «_ref-17» \o «» ^
«» The Fuehrer as a
Speaker by Dr. Joseph Goebbels. Calvin College

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