Nazis' rise, Weimar's demise

Through his charisma and oratory.
By 1921, he was the driving force as Propaganda Chief.
Hitler himself encouraged the use of armed squads, the salute, the swastika and uniform.
Drexler and other committee members tried to limit his influence but Hitler threatened to resign and won back the support of the party in two meetings in July 1921.
He rejected merging with other right wing groups and shifting the HQ to Berlin in order to retain his own influence in Munich.
How did Hitler assert himself in the NSDAP?
3300 members in 1921, 20 000 by 1923.
Voelkischer Beobachter set up 1921 and became daily.
1922, Hitler won Julius Streicher's support who had run a rival right wing party and the newspaper, Der Stuermer, which was anti-Semitic.
Influential aristocrat, Hermann Goering joined in 1922. His social contacts helped build Nazism's respectability among the elites.
Growing support for Nazis before the Putsch?
Hitler grossly overestimated public support for a Putsch. Lacked real planning. Relied Heavily on Ludendorff's promised support. Kahr and Lossow held back at the last minute.
Hitler, Göring, Streicher, Röhm, Himmler, Ludendorff and 2000 SA men marched into Munich but they had no military backing and the Bavarian police killed 14 Nazis
Hitler arrested, sentenced to 5 years (but released after 10 months). NSDAP banned. Hitler turned his trial into a propaganda success for himself and the NSDAP, winning the respect from other right wing nationalists.
Wrote his political strategy in Landsberg prison, dictating Mein Kampf in 1924
Reasons for Munich Putsch's failure and the consequences?
25 - "We demand the creation of a strong central power of the Reich"
Authoritarian point of 25-ponts?
creation of an empire including the entire German Volk. German superpower to compete with Britain and USA. Lebensraum. Poland, Ukraine and Russia had the raw materials, cheap labour and food supplies Germany needed. Wanted to create a 'New Order' in Eastern Europe, including destroying the USSR.
The first two point of the 25-points plan demanded German national self determination and the revocation of Versailles.
Declared Nazi Nationalist aims?
Point 14 demanded profit sharing in large industrial enterprises. They demanded old age insurance, nationalisation of all businesses. Hitler accepted the popular appeal but never committed to these ideas. Only dropped by 1934
Socialist elements of Nazi ideology?
To overcome class, religion and politics. Work together for the nation and promote 'German values.' Only benefit the German Volk. Appealed to all sections of soceity. Powerful messages of German unity whilst simultaneously scapegoating Jews and outsiders.
The tenth point claimed that it was everyone's duty to work physically or mentally for the greater good.
The fourth point declared that only members of the Volk may be citizens of the state. Only those of German blood may be members of the Volk. Accordingly, no Jew may be a member of the Volk
Ideals of the Volksgemeinschaft?
NSDAP officially refounded 27 February 1925. Hitler wrote the 'New Beginning' editorial in the Vökischer Beobachter at this time
How did Hitler refound the party after his imprisonment?
Gregor Strasser leader in North Germany. More socialist than Hitler. Brother Otto supported. Goebbels supported.
SA, founded in 1921 by Ernst Roehm, represented the left wing.
February 1926 Bamberg Conference - split came to a head. Agreed to run the Nazi party by the Fürerprinzip and that there was no place for disagreements. BUT 25-points declared unchangeable, including anti-capitalist elements. Re-established unity within the party but there were still significant differences.
Offered Goebbels advancement and made him Gauleiter of Berlin for agreeing to support Hitler.
Refused Strasser to become Vice-Chancellor. Strasser was isolated. Only Hitler as Kanzler.
Night of the Long Knives.
Right-left split within the NSDAP? How did Hitler control the left wing of his party?
Joseph Goebbells Berlin Gauleiter. Strasser sympathiser but supported Hitler from 1926 so Gauleiter post was his reward. Tasked to win over the capital. Created the newspaper Der Angriff but not appointed Chief of Propaganda until 1930.
Goebbels' early role?
The whole of Germany divided into Gaue. Gauleiter created district and branch groups. E.g. Goebbels Gauleiter of Berlin. Gregor Strasser built up an efficient party structure which increased membership from 25 000 in 1925 to over 100 000 in 1928
New organisations - Hitler Youth, Nazi Teachers' Association, Nazi Welfare Association, giving the needy food, Union of Nazi Lawyers and the Order of German Women all created
Early organisation of NSDAP?
Proof of increased Nazi influence - structure effectively organised, membership increased fourfold 1925-8, Hitler's leadership strong and secure. Other right wing groups joined NSDAP
Reichstag election, May 1928 - only 2.6% of the vote. Nazism had taken root but could not flourish. Weimar was stabilising, with extreme parties only gaining 30% of the vote. Nazis made significant gains in the north among rural and urban lower middle class e.g. in Schleswig-Holstein.
Regional and state elections 1929 - • Grain production only three quarters of its 1913 figure and farmers faced debt and falling incomes. The average income in agriculture was 44% below the national average, partially due to falling world prices. In Thuringia, the Nazis won 11.3% of the vote. Nazis could exploit the Great Depression.
Nazi success after the Putsch but before the crash?
October 1929. US loans ceased and returns were demanded.
Exports fell by 50% and prices fell.
50 000 businesses bankrupted.
Loss of banking confidence caused 5 major banks to collapse 1931.
Unemployment rose to 3m a year after the crash. Jan 1932, 6.1m. Around 40% of the workforce unemployed at times! Unemployment fell spring 1933. Welfare impossible, Brüning later dismantled the system.
Production fell over 40% from 1929 to 1932
Wages and income in agriculture fell. Agricultural prices Around 75% of 1913 prices.
Limited social security benefits, many workers faced destitution. Low demand for shopkeeper's good and for lawyers and doctors. Poverty, loss of pride and respectability
Rural poverty. Some tenant farmers evicted from generations long family homes
DEATH OF WEIMAR - had been stable in 1928. In 1929, the economy couldn't cope.
Date and effects of wall street crash?
DVP drifted to the right after Streseman's death but soon lost most support (1930)
The ZP tended towards Laissez-faire policies of the right 23-9. Brüning + Kaas conservative
The ZP tried to create a coalition with the Nazis in 1932, since no coalition could exist without either their support or KPD support. Brüning was their leader and they advocated by this point "authoritarian democracy." They condemned Papen's rule, who left the party
The DDP merged with the right wing youth group, the Young German Order (later incorporated into the HJ) in 1930, forming the State Party. Lost lots of votes
Drift to the right of Weimar parties?
Hugenburg, leader of DNVP gathered the 'National Opposition' of right wing forces, including NSDAP, which drafted the Law against the Enslavement of the German People, denouncing reparations and ministers who agreed to pay them. Gained enough signatures for a referendum in December 1929. Less than 6m votes and had required 21.
NSDAP membership grew to 130 000 by the end of 1929 and Nazism got a national standing
Successful party rally at Nuremburg on a bigger scale than ever before
It gave Hitler access to Hugenberg's vast media empire to promote his message
Effects of Young Plan referendum?
4 coalition parties could not agree on how to tackle the deficit left in the National Insurance scheme by mass unemployment. SPD wanted higher contributions, DVP reduced benefits. Müller resigned, coalition collapsed.
People's shift to the right - collapse of coalition seen as a FAILURE OF DEMOCRACY. Brüning chosen in order to form more authoritarian gvnt. The people agreed authoritarianism needed but voted Nazi instead
Court intrigue - Otto Meissner, State secretary, Oskar von Hindenburg, president's son and Major General Kurt von Schleicher, encouraged Hindenburg to appoint Brüning, ZP, as Kanzler. Were all conservatives and thought Brüning would be a good leader, to use article 48 to effect
Why was Bruening appointed?
By destroying Parliamentary democracy.
Brüning's austerity measures rejected by a majority of 63 in the Reichstag, so he used Article 48. When the Reichstag challenged its legality, he got Hindenburg to dissolve the Reichstag
September 1930 election - NSDAP vote increased from 800 000 to nearly 6 and a half million
Nazis won 18% of the vote, becoming the 2nd largest party in Germany. DNVP vote halved
SPD vote lost 5%, KPD vote increased slightly. DDP + DVP combined fell from 70 seats to 50
SPD prepared to tolerate Brüning's government and Article 48 in face of NSDAP and KPD
Parliamentary Democracy gave way to presidential government with Reichstag backing
In 1930, Article 48 only used 5 times and nearly 100 Reichstag laws were passed. In 1932, Article 48 was used 65 times and only 5 Reichstag laws were passed.
He imposed cuts by decree - lowered demand (to increase export prices) which worsened slump. More unemployed, worse benefits. Brüning nicknamed the 'Hunger Chancellor'
aimed to balance the budget, prevent inflation and get rid of the burden of reparations. Cut spending drastically, dismantling the welfare system and raised taxes. Millions without jobs or welfare. Who to turn to? One third of the later Nazi vote was from the working class and unemployed. Those who turned to Communism just worsened middle class fears and enabled Hitler to profit from the fear of the Red Threat. Helped him win over the middle class.
How did Bruening help the Nazis?
Spring 1932 Presidential Election - Hindenburg re-elected with just over half the votes as the alternative to Hitler (over 35%) and Thälmann.
Brüning forced to resign in May 1932 because Hindenburg didn't sign any more decrees:
1) Lacked industrial work creation schemes as the crisis worsened. More and more unemployed.
2) National Opposition reformed as the Harzburg Front in 1931, demanding Brüning resign.
3) Land Reform - Brüning planned to turn East Prussian Junker estates into 600 000 allotments. Accused of agrarian Bolshevism.
4) Intrigue - Land reform angered Kurt von Schleicher, who persuaded H to force Brüning to resign in May 1932 and create a right wing government. Had only survived on H's support

Brüning successfully ended the payment of reparations but didn't realise the economy's instability, nor the dependence of his own undemocratic position of H's support
Why did Bruening's chancellorship collapse?
Schleicher encouraged H to appoint the weak ZP nationalist Papen to better influence events
Catholic aristocrat who was not even a Reichstag deputy but formed a friendship with H
Non-party cabinet of 'national concentration,' nicknamed 'cabinet of barons' but only the DNVP truly supported Papen
Why was Papen appointed?
Hitler supported the cabinet in exchange for Reichstag dissolution and a new election, as well as the end of a gvnt ban on the SA and SS introduced after violent presidential election
The Prussian state gvnt had been dominated by SPD and ZP but Papen abolished it completely on 20 July 1932, declaring himself Reich Commissioner of Prussia. This was an unconstitutional act, replacing a Parliamentary system with an authoritarian one. The democrats, especially the SPD and trade unions, gave in without much resistance
Election 31 July 1932 - brutal campaign, street violence. 86 died in political fights in July
Nazis won over 35% of the vote, largest political party. DNVP fell further. DDP and DVP vote fell to just over 2% combined. SPD fell to just over 20%, KPD increased to nearly 15%
How did Papen help Hitler?
Papen lost a vote of no confidence on 12 September. More than 500 votes vs less than 50
So Papen dissolved the Reichstag, called a new election. Nazis lost 5% of the electorate.
Papen considered martial law and presidential dictatorship. Schleicher got H to fire him.
Schleicher got H to appoint him Kanzler on 2nd December 1932. Aimed for political stability by gaining left wing support with public works and attract the socialist wing of the Nazis, splitting the party, by offering Gregor Strasser the position of vice-Chancellor.
Trade Unions suspicious and broke off negotiations. Strasser wanted to accept but this sparked an NSDAP row. Strasser left isolated and resigned. Party morale fell.
Papen wanted power back, so met Hitler on 4th January 1933. Nazi-Nationalist Coalition with Papen as vice Chancellor agreed
Papen gathered the support of the elites - Junkers, industry and the army - who feared Schliecher's intrigue and appeal to the left. Oskar H and Meissner convinced H to make Hitler Kanzler. H withdrew support for Schleicher 28 January, sanctioned N-N coalition.
Papen and H both believed that Hitler could be controlled by Conservatism.
How did Papen's Chancellorship fall and the Nazis take power?
Hitler was a charismatic leader - growing demand for authoritarian leadership and Hitler was the most charismatic leader. He continually offered the same promises - he would tackle Versailles, democracy, Marxism and create a Volksgemeinschaft. A new party member wrote: "The personality of the Fuhrer had me totally in its spell." This was a typical response.
Fear of Communism - many unemployed and marginalised turned to Communism, which scared the middle class into Hitler's arms.
Appealed to the marginalised - As unemployment peaked, many of the unemployed turned to Nazism so that one third of its voters were working class. Nazis won over many first time voters, who were facing mass unemployment. There were nearly 2m new voters and turnout increased noticeably.
Gained respectability - Harzburg front. Influence of sympathising elites like Goering, Schacht and Keppler encouraged support. Hitler's speech to industrialists in Duesseldorf i n 1932 also helped.
Better Party structure - developed under Strasser. Gauleiter and Fuehrerprinzip. Able to appeal to more people in wider areas.
Propaganda - 6000 trained public speakers passed through training school by 1933. They combined dramatic techniques like marches and loudspeakers. Adapted to local circumstances, focused in key districts, used grassroots feedback. Posters and leaflets which understood psychology. Tailored to the economic and social interests of specific social groups. E.g. offered benefits to farmers to offset prices, offered the unemployed bread and work, appealed to the Mittelstand, saying Nazism would limit department stores. Mass suggestion, converting people through the atmosphere of emotional mass rallies. Uniforms and music etc.
Unity - Volksgemeinschaft. Unity behind the Fuehrer. Scapegoating.
What were the main reasons why the Nazis gained popularity in 1929?
Geographical support - higher in North and East and lower in South and West. East Prussia to Schleswig-Holstein had the best Nazi results, reflecting religion and the level of urbanisation. Catholic areas less likely to vote Nazi. Highest in Protestant countryside, like Schleswig-Holstein. Exceptions on local circumstances - Catholic, urbanised Silesia still voted highly for the Nazis - nationalist passions generated since half Silesia was lost to Poland.
Peasants - There was rural poverty during the crash. Some tenant farmers evicted from generations long family homes. Prices were 25% lower than 1914 and peasants earned 40% less than average.
Nazi propaganda had more of an effect on small towns and villages. They were big occaisions, especially with trained public speakers, marches, Hitler's 1932 'Flight over Germany,' for three major speaking programmes
Regional/area appeal of Nazism?
1 third of Nazi voters working class. They had well established ideologies opposed intellectually to Nazism. Strong organisation to counter Nazi propaganda - Trade unions, church hierarchy. Persecution under Kaiserreich strengthened associationism
Why did the workers and Catholics reject Nazism more than other groups?
Mittelstand - right wing since Kaiserreich - crushed between TUs and big business. Nazis appealed. point 17 of the 25 point programme promised to communalise department stores and show the "utmost consideration" to all small traders
Politics of Anxiety - middle class felt that Weimar undermined their traditional role in society. The crash and inflation especially. Contempt for democracy.
Leaders gave vague violent orders and SA took the hint. This enabled the leaders to imply that the SA were acting of their own accord and maintain middle class support
Middle class support?
SA and SS led unprecedented waves of violence, persecution and intimidation
SA - Armed Nazi squads set up as the Sturm Abteilung by Ernst Röhm in 1921, who led it 1921-3 and 1930-4. The SA represented the left of the party
Conflict in the town of Coburg degenerated into a pitched battle of communists vs SA
Of the 20-30 year old who joined political parties, 60% joined the Nazis. The young filled the ranks of the SA, often unemployed and without hope. Something to do, hope for change
Rise in unemployment increased SA numbers. Men joined for food and accommodation
SA banned for 3 months but restored by Papen in June 1932
July 1932 campaign, 461 political riots in Prussia alone. During the 1932 campaign, 19 died when Nazis marched through a working class suburb of Hamburg
Control of the streets seen as essential to Nazi expansion. Leaders encouraged
Stennes revolt - Hitler wanted to maintain the semblance of legality to appeal to the middle class. Berlin leader of SS, Stennes, rebelled against Hitler and Goebbels' orders to act legally. Hitler defeated the revolt with a small purge. SA-party relations often difficult
SA violence?
Hitler Kanzler, Frick Minister of the Interior, Göring Minister Without Portfolio. 3 Nazis, 9 conservative nationalist non-Nazis in the coalition. No majority in the Reichstag
H openly resented Hitler, whose position depended on H's whim since he lacked a R majority
Göring a Minister but also Minister of the Interior in Prussia, controlling the police. Harassed opponents ignored Nazi crimes in Prussia. Goebbels used the State for propaganda purposes
Hitler called a new election within 24 hours of appointment
Göring enrolled 50 000 Nazis into the Prussian police. Violence dominated the election campaign. SPD and KPD meetings broken up violently. 69 people died during the campaign
Nazi appointments once in power?
Blamed the economy on democracy and communists. Idea of 'national uprising.'
Dutch Communist van der Lubbe set the Reichstag on fire, during the election campaign, Reichstag Fire, 27th February 1933
28 February 'Decree for the Protection of People and State' drawn up by Frick, signed by H
Most civil and political liberties suspended and central gvnt strengthened. Communist threat
March election - overly high turnout suggests intimidation and corruption. Nearly 45% voted Nazi but the NSDAP still required Nationalist support as constitutional changed need 2 thirds
How did communism help Hitler consolidate the dictatorship?
Enabling Act doing away with Parliamentary procedure, giving Kanzler 4 years full power
To pass, required the support or abstention of non Nazi representatives
21 March Potsdam Garrison Church - Goebbels organised a ceremony to celebrate the opening of the R in the presence of H, Wilhelm II's eldest son and army generals. Hitler aligned himself symbolically with the forces of old Germany to reassure Conservatives
Vote on the Enabling Act held in the Kroll Opera House. KPD refused entry, members inside were intimidated by the SA. Require two thirds majority so Hitler made a speech promising to respect the Catholic Church's rights and uphold religious and moral values
Only the SPD voted against the Act. Enabling Law passed by 444 to 94 - legal revolution
How did Hitler make dictatorship legal?x
crisis of German capitalism, so big business supported the NSDAP, e.g. Thyssen, who donated over half a million Reichsmarks to various right wing parties, mostly the Nazis. Nazis were simply the agents of big business. Hitler addressed major industrialists at Duesseldorf in Jan 1932, highlighting his anti-Marxism and reassuring them he would protect them. Schacht and Keppler encouraged support amongst big business. Hitler's 20 February 1933 meeting with 20 industrialists. Promised 3m Reichsmarks
Marxist view of how the Nazi takeover of power?
Nazis had already infiltrated federal gvnts in Feb to March 1933. Success turned to violence and fear which Hitler wanted to curb for fear of losing Conservative support.
Law of 31 March 1933 dissolved regional Parliaments (Landtage) and reformed them with acceptable majorities. Nazis dominated central and regional governments
•aw of 7 April 1933 created Reich Governors (Reichstatthalter) who were often also Gauleiter. They only existed to "execute the will of the supreme leadership of the Reich"
Landtage abolished completely in January 1934 - power to Ministry of the Interior
How were the regional states coordinated?
Had defeated the Kapp Putsch and were hostile to the Nazis - threatened stability
By May 1933, the depression had weakened them. Leaders hoped that TUs could continue their role during the Nazi regime and provide the framework for development after Hitler
Nazis declared the day of celebration for international socialist labour (1 May) a national holiday, encouraging the TUs. Next day, SA and SS occupied TU buildings, confiscating funds and sending leaders to early concentration camps like Dachau
Deutscher Arbeitsfront, DAF set up, led by Ley. 22m members but more for control than representation. Could not dispute wages or working conditions (therefore pointless!)
How were Trade Unions coordinated?
KPD already outlawed after Reichstag fire, SPD crushed by lack of TUs but banned officially 22 June, most other parties dissolved themselves in June, ZP dissolved itself 5 July
Nazi party declared the only legal party in Germany on 5 July 1933
How were political parties ended?