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Hitler in Power

Passers-by look at an NSDAP poster. The poster reads: "Hitler: our last hope." Many people in Germany agreed. They thought that Hitler was the one person who could solve all of their problems. Everybody else had failed. In the November 1932 elections, a third of all voters voted for the NSDAP. The party became the largest in Germany.

There were many people who thought Hitler’s party was dangerous. They hoped that other parties could keep him in check and that he would soon disappear. But that didn’t happen. On January 30, 1933 Hitler became Reichskanzler, the leader of Germany.

The Politics of the Nazis

The Nazis quickly began arresting their political opponents, especially Communists and Social Democrats. These were the people who could organize political resistance against the Nazis. Hundreds of opponents were confined to concentration camps, tortured and killed there. People were afraid. Although many Germans did not agree with the Nazis, they did not dare to do anything against the new government. It had become too risky.

Supporters of the Nazis hoped that all of society’s problems would soon be solved. If that meant that some people would be made to suffer then that was a price well worth paying.

The Nazis ruled with an iron fist. Anything that did not fit into their world view was eliminated. Once Hitler and his party had total control of Germany, and most citizens had rallied behind them, they put all their energies into getting back the territories that Germany had lost after the First World War. They were fulfilling campaign promises. Germany had to become powerful, and for this it needed an army. The unemployed were put to work on massive building projects and in the weapons industry. With the help of his new army, Hitler succeeded in expanding German territory in several areas without needing a war to do so.

Copyrights
Copyright Photo: Bildarchiv Preussischer Kulturbesitz, Berlin
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This day in history
Today: 11 December 2017
Then: 11 December 1941

Germany and Italy declare war on the United States; the U.S. respond in kind.

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