Political views of Adolf Hitler

The political views of Adolf Hitler have presented historians and biographers with some difficulty. His writings and methods have been adapted to the past, including anti-semitism , anti-communism , anti-parliamentarianism , German Lebensraum (“living space”), belief in the superiority of an ” Aryan race “and an extreme form of German nationalism . Hitler personally claimed he was fighting against Jewish Marxism . [1]

Hitler’s political views have been formed during three periods: (1) His years as a poverty-stricken young man in Vienna and Munich a prior to World War I , where he turned to nationalist-oriented political pamphlets and antisemitic newspapers out of distrust mainstream newspapers and political parties; (2) The closing months of World War I when Germany lost the war; Hitler is said to have his extreme nationalism during this time, desiring to “save”, who, in his view, betrayed it; (3) The 1920s, during which his early political career began Mein Kampf. Hitler formally renounced his Austrian citizenship on 7 April 1925, but did not acquire German citizenship until almost seven years later; allowing him to run for public office. Hitler was influenced by Benito Mussolini who was appointed Prime Minister of Italy in October 1922 after his ” March on Rome “. [2]

In many ways, Adolf Hitler epitomizes “the strength of personality in political life” as mentioned by Friedrich Meinecke . [3] He was essential to the very framework of Nazism’s political appeal and its manifestation in Germany. So important were Hitler’s views that they immediately affected the political policies of Nazi Germany . He asserted the Führerprinzip (“Leader principle”). The principle relies on the absolute obedience of all subordinates to their superiors. Hitler viewed the party structure and later the government structure as a pyramid, with himself-the infallible leader-at the apex. [4]

Hitler firmly believed that the force of “will” was decisive in determining the political race for a nation and rationalized his actions accordingly. Given that Hitler was appointed “leader of the German Reich for life”, he “embodied the supreme power of the state, as the delegate of the German people”, it was his role to determine the “outward form and structure of the Reich “. [5] To That end, Hitler’s political motivation consisted of an ideology That combined traditional German and Austrian anti-Semitism with year racial doctrine resting on an admixture of bits intellectualized and pieces of social Darwinism and the ideas – mostly Obtained second-hand and only partially understood – of Friedrich Nietzsche ,Richard Wagner , Houston Stewart Chamberlain , Arthur Gobineauand Alfred Rosenberg , Paul de Lagarde , Georges Sorel , Alfred Ploetz and others. [6]

Army intelligence agent

After World War I, Hitler stayed in the army, qui Was Mainly engaged in suppressing socialist Uprisings across Germany, Including in Munich , Where Hitler returned in 1919. He Took share in “national thinking” courses Organized by the Education and Propaganda Department (Dept Ib / P) of the Bavarian Reichswehr , Headquarters 4 under Captain Karl Mayr . [7]Mayr recruited Hitler to help re-educate soldiers in the wake of the social revolution across Germany. In the 1939, Hitler heard readings on Germany’s economic situation, the political history of the war and other matters, all delivered in an anti-Bolshevik disposition, inciting him to proselytize nationalist messages to his comrades. [8] This helped popularize the notion that there was a scapegoat responsible for the outbreak of war and Germany’s defeat. Hitler’s own bitterness over the collapse of the war effort also began to shape his ideology. [9] Like other German nationalists, he believed the Dolchstoßlegende (stab-in-the-back myth ), which claimed that the German Army, “undefeated in the field”, had been “stabbed in the back” on the front by civilian leaders and Marxists , later dubbed the “November criminals”. [10] “International Jewry” has been described as a relentlessly destructive Germany. [11] Such scapegoating was essential to Hitler’s political career, and it seems that he was genuinely believed that Jews were responsible for Germany’s post-war disorders. [12]

In July 1919 Hitler was appointed Verbindungsmann (intelligence officer) of an Aufklärungskommando (commando reconnaissance) of the Reichswehr , both to influence other soldiers and to infiltrate the German Workers’ Party(DAP). [13] [14] Much like the political activists in the DAP, Hitler blamed the loss of the First World War on Jewish intrigue at home and abroad, espousing völkisch- nationalistic political beliefs with the intention of resurrecting Germany’s greatness by smashing the Versailles Treaty . Along those lines, Hitler proclaimed that the “German yoke must be broken by German iron” (Das deutsche Elend muß durch deutsches Eisen zerbrochen werden ). [15]

German Workers’ Party

In September 1919 Hitler wrote what is often considered as an antisemitic text, requested by Adolf Gemlich, who had participated in the same “educational courses” as Hitler. In this report Hitler argued for a “rational anti-Semitism” that would not resort to pogroms , but instead “legally fight and remove the privileges enjoyed by the Jews as opposed to other foreigners living among us.” Its final goal, however, must be the irrevocable removal of the Jews themselves. ” [16] [17] This is a call for forced expulsion. Europe has a long history of expelling Jews and the auto-da-fé of the Inquisition . [18]

While he was studying the activities of the German Workers’ Party (DAP), Hitler became impressed with founder Anton Drexler’s anti- Semitic, nationalist, anti-capitalist and anti- Marxist ideas. [13] Drexler was impressed with Hitler’s oratory skills, and invited him to join the DAP on 12 September 1919. On the orders of his army superiors, Hitler applied to join the party, [19] and 555 (the party started counting membership at 500 to give the impression they were a much larger party). [20] [21] Hitler, in his work Mein KampfThe President of the Party is the Seventh Party Member. [22]

Hitler was discharged from the army on March 31, 1920 and was working full-time for the party. [23] Displaying his talent for oratory and propaganda skills, with the support of Drexler, Hitler became chief of propaganda for the early 1920s party. When early party members promulgated their 25-point manifesto on 24 February 1920 (co-authored by Hitler , Anton Drexler, Gottfried Feder , and Dietrich Eckart ), it was Hitler who penned the first point, revealing his intention to unify German-speaking peoples, claiming that the party demanded, “all Germans be gathered together in Greater Germany on the basis from the right of all peoples to self-determination. ” [24] By the spring of 1920 he engineered the change of name toNational Socialist German Workers’ Party ( Nationalsozialistische Deutsche Arbeiterpartei – NSDAP), Commonly Known as the Nazi Party. Under his influence, the party adopted a modified swastika , a well-known good luck that had previously been used in Germany as a mark of volkishness and ” Aryanism “, along with the Roman salute used by Italian fascists. [25] At this time the Nazi Party was one of many small extremist groups in Munich, but Hitler’s vitriolic beer hall speeches began attracting regular audiences. [26] He became adept at using populist themes, including the use of scapegoats, who were blamed for their listeners’ economic hardships. [27] He gained notoriety for his rowdy polemic speeches against the Treaty of Versailles, rival politicians, and especially against Marxists and Jews. [26]Hitler used personal magnetism and an understanding of crowd psychology to advantage in public speaking. [28] [29]

In June 1921, while Hitler and Eckart were on a fundraising trip to Berlin , a mutiny broke out within the Nazi Party in Munich. Members of its executive committee wanted to merge with rival German Socialist Party (DSP). [30] Hitler returned to Munich on July 11 and angrily tendered his resignation. The committee members realized that the resignation of their leading public figure and speaker would mean the end of the party. [31] Hitler announced that he would replace Drexler as party chairman, and that the party headquarters would remain in Munich. [32] They capitulated to Hitler’s demand and on July 29, 1921 a special congressHitler as the new chairman; the vote was 543 for Hitler and one against. [33]

He asserted the Führerprinzip (“Leader principle”). The principle relies on the absolute obedience of all subordinates to their superiors; So he viewed the party structure and the government as a pyramid, with himself-the infallible leader-at the apex. Rank in the party was determined by elections-positions were filled through by those of higher rank, who asked for an answer to the will of the leader. [4]

Early followers of the party included Rudolf Hess , Hermann Göring (command of the Sturmabteilung (SA) as Oberster SA-Führer in 1923), [34] Ernst Röhm (later head of the SA), Alfred Rosenberg (prominent theorist), Gregor Strasser , Dietrich Eckart (a key founder of the party), Hermann Esser , Ludwig Maximilian Erwin von Scheubner-Richter and Erich Ludendorff (Field-Marshal who was the party’s candidate for President of the Republic in 1925). [35]

The Beer Hall Putsch

Hitler enlisted the help of World War I General Erich Ludendorff to try to seize power in Munich (the capital of Bavaria ) in the Beer Hall Putsch of 8-9 November 1923. [36] This would be a step in the nation of power, overthrowing the Weimar Republic in Berlin. On November 8, Hitler’s forces were successful in occupying the local Reichswehr and police headquarters; however, neither the army nor the state [37] The next day, Hitler and his followers marched from the beer hall to the Bavarian War Ministryto overthrow the Bavarian government on their “March on Berlin”. Hitler wanted to emulate Benito Mussolini’s ” March on Rome ” (1922) by staging his own blow in Berlin to be followed by a challenge to the government in Berlin. However, the Bavarian authorities ordered the police to stand their ground. The putschists were dispersed after a short firefight in the streets near the Feldherrnhalle . [38] In all, sixteen Nazi members and four police officers were killed in the coup. [39]

Hitler fled to the home of Ernst Hanfstaengl , and by some accounts he contemplated suicide; this state of mind has been disputed. [40] Hitler was depressed but calm when he was arrested on 11 November 1923. [41] Fearing “left-wing” members of the Nazi Party might try to seize leadership from him during his incarceration, Hitler quickly appointed Alfred Rosenberg temporary leader. [42]

Mein Kampf

Beginning in February 1924, Hitler was tried for high treason before the special People’s Court in Munich. [41] He used his trial as an opportunity to spread his message throughout Germany. At one point during the trial, Hitler discussed political leadership, where it is stated that it is a subject of political science ( Staatswissenschaft ) but an innate ability, one of statecraft ( Staatskunst ). [43]He further elaborated by claiming that one of the ten thousand politicians only one Bismarck emerged, subtly implying that he too had been born with this gift; Karl Marx, who has been inspired by the Russian Revolution Lenin, is not making his way to the mind but to the senses. [44] His rousing speeches during the Hitler famous trial, but they did not exonerate him. In April 1924, he was sentenced to five years’ imprisonment in Landsberg Prison , where he received more favorable treatment from sympathetic guards and received substantial amounts of fan mail, including funds and other forms of assistance. During 1923 and 1924 at Landsberg, the first volume of Mein Kampf ( My Struggle; originally entitled Four and a Half Years of Struggle Against Lies, Stupidity, and Cowardice ) to his deputy, Rudolf Hess ; [45] his publisher shortened the title to Mein Kampf . [46]

The book, dedicated to the Thule Society member Dietrich Eckart , was an autobiography and exhibition of his ideology. In Mein Kampf Hitler speaks on his life, his early days in the Nazi Party, general ideas on politics, including the transformation of German society into one based on race ; some passages imply genocide . [47] Published in two volumes in 1925 and 1926, it sold 228,000 copies between 1925 and 1932. In 1933, Hitler’s first year in office, 1,000,000 copies were sold. [48] The book acts as a reference, giving insight into the world of which Hitler never wavered throughout his life. [49][50]

It states that during his childhood, Hitler had little interest in politics, he had ambitions to become a painter. Like other boys in his part of Austria, he was attracted to Pan-Germanism , but his intellectual pursuits were those of a dilettante . Hitler portrays himself as a born leader interested in knightly adventures, exploration, and who by the time he was eleven, was a nationalist interested in history. [51] [52] Ultimately, Hitler never finished his primary schooling when he was 16, devoting his attention to his artistic pursuits to Vienna in 1905. [53]It was in Vienna where Hitler was later acquainted with some hard lessons, namely, that it was a critical struggle between the weak and the weak. ” [54]

While Hitler was incarcerated at the Landsberg Prison writing Mein Kampf , he had a routine visit from the respected First World War veteran, Major General Dr. Karl Haushofer , who was the chair of the military science and geography department at the University of Munich. These meetings consisted of readings and academic briefings are geopolitics, Most Certainly covering the Nazi ideal of Lebensraum and qui Likely Influenced the views Hitler laid out in Mein Kampf . [55] Perhaps confirming Hitler’s assertions, Haushofer espoused the theory that Germany was defeated in the Great War by her lack of sufficient space and autarchy. [56]Continental space and the necessity of an abundance of soil in the form of an important distinction between the British Empire and the United States. Hitler believed it was Germany’s right to seize the cultivable land in Russia since, the earth belongs to those people willing to “industriously” as opposed to the slothful, incompetent people unworthy to possess it. Describing the Russians in the harshest of terms while intimating that the German people were more deserving by virtue of their alleged superior intellect, Hitler stated, “[57] Presaging this Nazi goal, Hitler wrote in Mein Kampf , “Without consideration of traditions and prejudices, Germany must find the courage to gather our people and their strength for an advance along the road that will lead this people from its present restrictive living space to new land and soil, and also from the danger of vanishing from the earth or of a slave nation. ” [58] In this sense, social Darwinism and geography were merged into Hitler’s mind.

Many historians contend that Hitler’s essential character and political philosophy can be discovered in Mein Kampf . Historian James Joll once asked that Mein Kampf constituted, “all of Hitler’s beliefs, most of his program and much of his character.” [59] Evidence within the text of Mein Kampf is nothing less than the very crux of Hitler’s program according to Andreas Hillgruber. [60] One of Hitler’s foremost goals was that Germany should become “a World Power ” on the geopolitical stage or as he stated, “it will not continue to exist at all.” [61] Biographer Joachim Fest asserted Mein Kampfcontained a “remarkably faithful portrait of its author.” [62]

In his infamous tome, Hitler categorized human beings by their physical attributes, claiming German or Nordic Aryans were at the top of the hierarchy while assigning the bottom orders to Jews and Romani. Hitler claimed that dominated people benefit from learning from superior Aryans, and said the Jews were conspiring to keep this ” master race ” from rightfully ruling the world by diluting its racial and cultural purity, and exhorting Aryans to believe in equality rather than superiority and inferiority . Within Mein Kampf, Hitler describes a struggle for world domination, an ongoing racial, cultural, and political battle between Aryans and Jews, the necessary racial purification of the German people, and the need for German imperial expansion and colonization eastwards. [63] According to Hitler and other Pan-German thinkers, Germany needed to obtain additional living space or Lebensraum , which would properly nurture the “historic destiny” of the German people; he has a central idea in his foreign policy. [64] Hitler wrote in Mein Kampfof his hatred towards the world of twin evils: communism and Judaism. He stressed his intention to unite German and moreover, he stressed his intention to unite all Germans in the process of destroying them. [65]

Völkisch nationalism

Hitler was a Pan-Germanic nationalist whose ideology was built around a philosophically authoritarian , anti- Marxist , anti-Semitic, anti-democratic worldview. Such views of the world in the wake of the fledgling Weimar government were not uncommon in Germany when democratic / parliamentary governance ineffectual to solve Germany’s problems. Correspondingly, veterans of the First World War and like-minded nationalists formed the Vaterlandspartei which promoted expansionism, soldierly camaraderie and heroic leadership, all under the guise of völkischtraditions like ethnic and linguistic nationalism, but which also includes leadership in decision-making. [66] The völkisch parties began to fractionalize during Hitler’s absence from the revolutionary scene in Germany after the failed ” Beer Hall Putsch ” of November 1923. When he re-emerged upon release from Landsberg Prison, his importance to the movement was obvious cam to Believe That He was the realization of völkisch nationalistic ideals in a lot of near Messianic narcissismwhich included his conviction to the Treaty of Versailles, and to “restore Germany’s might and power”, creating a reborn German nation as the chosen leader of the Nazi Party. [67]

Hitler stressed the völkisch ideology, claiming Germanic / Aryan superiority in Mein Kampf with:

Every manifestation of human culture, every product of art, science and technical skill, which we see before our eyes today, is almost exclusively the product of the Aryan creative power. This very fact fully justifies the conclusion that it was the Aryan alone who founded a superior type of humanity; therefore it represents the archetype of what we understand by the term: MAN. He is the Prometheusof mankind, from whose shining brow the divine spark of genius has at all times, always kindling anew that fire which, in the form of knowledge, illuminated the dark night by the eye of the mystery and thus showing man how to rise and become master over all the other beings on the earth. Should he be forced to disappear, a deep darkness will descend on the earth; within a few thousand years human culture will vanish and the world will become a desert. [68]

The völkisch nationalism of Hitler and Nazis encompassed the notion que la German Volk Was epitomized by German farmers and Peasants, celebrities Who Remained uncorrupted by modern ideals and Whose greatest attribute Was their “cheerful subservience” and Their capacity to sponds to their “monarchical calling. ” [69] Hitler was their new ‘monarch’ in a manner of speaking. Völkisch nationalism also forged into its ideals, the importance of nature, the centrality of a knightly savior (Hitler in this case), and the belief in the superior Aryan. [70] Antisemitism remained a key component of the völkischmovement and a permanent undercurrent of conservative parts in German history and after many years culminated with the view that the Jews were the only thing standing in the way of the ideal society. [71] Unfortunately, Germany’s newfound völkisch nationalist leader, Hitler, instantiated a policy of ethnic nationalism replete with directives to exterminate Jews and other identifiers enemies as Nazism has become the religion of the movement and the “irrational became concrete” under the terms of its “ideological framework.” [72]

Social conservatism

Hitler and the Nazis promoted a socially conservative view of many aspects of life, supported by harsh discipline and a militaristic point of view. [73] Conservative opinions about sexuality amid the Nazis led to extreme homophobiawhich resulted in the systematic persecution of homosexuals . [74] Hitler and his paladins also controlled what is acceptable artistic expression in Nazi Germany, abolishing what they considered ” degenerate art “. [75]The Nazis strongly discouraged, and in some cases outright rejected the following behaviors: the use of cosmetics, premarital sex, prostitution, pornography, sexual vices, smoking, and excessive drinking. [76] In many ways, there was a distinct Anti-intellectualism present within Nazi philosophy. [77] Hitler and the Nazis have been tempted to a more promising future. [78]

Evidence of Hitler’s Disdain for Weimar’s cultural and social decadence appears on multiple occasions in Mein Kampf . In his seminal volume, he expresses an ultra-conservatism:

If we study the race of our cultural life in the last twenty-five years we will be able to see how far we have come in this process of retrogression. Everywhere we find the presence of those germs that give rise to protuberant growths that we need to get closer to the ruin of our culture. Here we find undoubted symptoms of slow corruption; and woe to the nations [79]

Hitler raved against what he considers to be tasteless and morally destructive art on display throughout Germany in Mein Kampf , calling some of it morbid and declaring that “people would have benefited by not visiting them at all.” [79] Convinced that it was necessary to show the German people what, “degenerate art” so as to protect them in the future, Hitler arranged for a formally commissioned exhibit in July 1937 of specially selected carvings, sculptures, and paintings. Once the exhibit has been published, selected artist’s works have been banned from Nazi Germany. [80]

Well known was Hitler’s vehement opposition to racial-mixing; he also believed to have had Pan-Germans that Germans had an obligation to procreate:

That such a mentality [racial purity] may be possible without any preclusion of the principle of their own choice, without being obliged to do so by anything except an ecclesiastical precept. Why should it not be possible to induce people to make such a claim, instead of such a precept, that they are simply supposed to be Reviews another. And, further, they should be made aware of the fact that they are bound to give to the Almighty Creator as such He himself made to His own image. [81]

Another area of ​​concern for Hitler and which was mentioned by his childhood companion in Vienna, August Kubizek, was prostitution – which Hitler associated with venereal disease and cultural decline. [82] Moreover, Hitler found the practice of counterintelligence and misinterpretation in Mein Kampf , writing:

Prostitution is a disgrace to humanity and can not be removed simply by charitable or academic methods. Its restrictions and final extermination presupposes the removal of a whole series of contributory circumstances. The first remedy must be established as soon as possible, especially for young men … [83]

He goes on asserting that prostitution was dangerous and more important, destructive socio-political implications. [84] Once Hitler came to power, his regime moved against all forms of sexual deviations and sexual crimes, especially homosexuality, to ‘crime’ which was prosecuted as many as 30,000 times between 1934 and 1939. [85] Hitler’s social conservatism was so extreme towards homosexuals that are considered as “enemies of the State” and grouped in the same category as Jews and Communists; A special department of the Gestapo was formed to deal with the matter. [86]

Hitler’s general perception of women has been ultra-conservative and patriarchal, with their foremost task being a domesticated one who has worked well at home, ensuring it stays clean and orderly; meanwhile, it was the woman’s role to educate her children to be aware of their importance as Aryans and instill within them a commitment to their ethnic community. Therefore, Hitler believed women had no place in public or political life due to their differing nature from men. [87] [88] Like many Romantic artists, musicians, and writers, the Nazis value strength, passion, frank declarations of feelings, and deep devotion to family (with women being seen in the family in Nazi Germany) . [89]

So great was Hitler’s influence in all political aspects of social life, that he was subordinate to his opinion. Profoundly anti-intellectual and anti-physical, and more specifically, the target group, which should be designed to create young German nationals who have been convinced of their “superiority to others.” [90] Moreover, Hitler wanted to create young German soldiers who were willing to fight for their convictions, so they were trained by Nazi propaganda, trained in military discipline, and taught obedience to authority in the Hitler Youth . [91] Ultimate obedience was then transferred directly to their Führer and his political cause.

Contempt for democracy

Hitler blamed Germany’s parliamentary government for many of the nation’s ills. The Nazis and Hitler especially, associated democracy with the failed Weimar government and the punitive Treaty of Versailles. [92] Hitler often denounced democracy , equating it with internationalism . Since democratic ideals espoused equality for all men , it Represented to Hitler and his Nazi ideologues the concept of mob rule and the hatred of excellence. [93] Not only was democracy antithetical to their social-Darwinist abstractions, but its international-capitalist framework was considered an exclusively Jewish-derived design. [94]Hitler also thought it was nothing more than a preliminary stage of Bolshevism. [95]

Hitler believed in the leading principle (henceforth, the Leader, der Führer ), and he considered it to be an idea of ​​governance or morality could be held by the people above the power of the leader. As Joachim Fest described in 1930 confrontation between Hitler and Otto Strasser, “Now Hitler takes Strasser to the task of placing the idea ‘above the Führer and wanting’ to give every party comrade the right to decide the nature of the idea, even to decide whether or not the Führer is true to the so-called idea. ‘ That, he cried angrily, was the worst kind of democracy, for which there was no place in their movement. he embodies the idea and he only knows its ultimate goal. ‘” [96] [97] [98]

Although Hitler achieved that he ascended to power the use of the Weimar Republic’s parliamentary system, he never intended for the continuation of democratic governance. Contrarily, Hitler proclaimed that he would “destroy democracy with the weapons of democracy.” [99] The swift transition made by the Hitler succeeded in this look. For the most part, democratic governance was never embraced by the German masses or by the elite. [100] The ill-fated Weimar democracy’s inability to provide economic relief to the German people during the Great Depression further enhanced its image as an ineffective system of government amid the masses. [100]Hitler offered people the prospect of a “new and better society”. [101] He exploited the conditions in Germany in the ultimate expression of political opportunism when he brought his dictatorial and totalitarian government to power; thereafter, attempting to impose himself and his system on the world in the process. [100]


In Hitler’s mind, Communism was a major enemy of Germany, an enemy he often mentions in Mein Kampf . During the trial for his involvement in the Beer Hall Putsch , Hitler claimed that his singular goal was to assist the German government in “fighting Marxism “. [102] Marxism, Bolshevism, and Communism were interchangeable terms for Hitler as evidenced by their use in Mein Kampf :

In the years 1913 and 1914 I expressed my opinion for the first time in various circles, some of which are now members of the National Socialist Movement, that the problem of how the future of the German nation can be secured is the problem of how Marxism can be exterminated. [103]

Later in his seminal volume, Hitler advocated for “the destruction of Marxism in all its shapes and forms.” [104] According to Hitler, Marxism was a Jewish strategy to subjugate Germany and the world and saw Marxism as a mental and political form of slavery. [105] From Hitler’s vantage point, Bolsheviks existed to serve “Jewish international finance.” [106] When the British tried Negotiating with Hitler in 1935 by Including Germany in the extension of the Locarno Pact, he rejected Their offer and INSTEAD, assured Them That German rearmament significant Was in Safeguarding Europe contre Communism, [107] a move qui Clearly showed his anti-Communist proclivities. [108]

In 1939, Hitler told the Swiss Commissioner to the League of Nations, Carl Burckhardt, that everything was “done against Russia” and continued, “if those in the West are too stupid or too blind to understand this, then I will be forced to come to an understanding with the Russians to beat the West, and then, after its defeat, turn with all my concerted force against the Soviet Union. ” [109] When Hitler finally ordered the attack against the Soviet Union, it was the fulfillment of his ultimate goal and the most important campaign in his estimation, as it consisted of a struggle of “the chosen Aryan people against Jewish Bolsheviks.” [110]

Biographer Alan Bullock avows, Hitler “ugly great stress” on the need to concentrate on a single enemy, an enemy he lumps together as “Marxism and the Jew.” [111] Shortly in the wake of the Commissar Order , a directive to the German invasion of the Soviet Union, SS Deputy Reinhard Heydrich informed the SS of Hitler’s geopolitical philosophy, which conflated Bolshevism and Jews, writing “Eastern Jewry is the intellectual reservoir of Bolshevism and in the Führer’s view must be annihilated. ” [112] Considering the eventual Nazi invasion of the Soviet Union ( Operation Barbarossa), no additional inducements are really required concerning Hitler’s hatred of Communism, especially since the Nazi persecution and extermination of these groups was not only systematic, but it was extensive both within Germany and only intensified in the occupied areas under Hitler’s leadership. [113]

Because Nazism co-opted the popular success of communism among others, and it was an alternative to it, Hitler’s anti-communist program allowed industrialists with traditional conservative views (tending toward monarchism, aristocracy, and laissez-faire capitalism) Their lot to cast with, and help underwrite, the Nazi rise to power . [114] [115]

Lebensraum and the invasion of the Soviet Union

Historian Roderick Stackelberg contends that Hitler’s invasion of the Soviet Union ( Operation Barbarossa ) was the result of “mutually reinforcing ideological, racial, and geopolitical assumptions” that Hitler had plainly laid out in Mein Kampf . [116] Noted German historian Andreas Hillgruber shares this view. In fact, Hillgruber encapsulates Hitler’s political views in which the invasion of the Soviet Union. He places it within the context of Hitler’s intention to create a continental Reich, which included the destruction of the Jews. According to Hillgruber, Hitler had the following objectives in mind when he invaded the Soviet Union:

1. The total eradication of all forms of “Judeo-Bolshevik” leadership, which encompassed its biological roots, namely the millions of Jews occupying central and eastern Europe;
2. The requisite acquisition of Lebensraum gold colonial space necessary for German settlement in the finest and most arable territories within Russia, or in those parts of Russia which provided political or strategic advantages in Hitler’s mind;
3. The subjugation and decimation of the Slavic people, which was divided into four territories or “Reich Commissariats” entitled Ostland, Ukraine, Moskovia and Caucasus; Each subordinated to German “viceroys” and ruled much the same way the British ruled their colonial dominion India . One of the principal aims of German leadership in these Reich Commissariats would be the cancellation of any condition of the memory of the Russian statehood and the subordinated “states” to German mastery;
4. Ultimately, a “great space” autarchy in continental Europe under German suzerainty would result, one capable of defeating any possible Allied blockade and for whom, the vanquished eastern territories could provide a theoretically inexhaustible source raw materials and food necessary for any protracted war against the Anglo-Saxon powers. The establishment of this “German Reich of the Germanic nation” also included in its planning – to feed its soldiers to the Russian land, even though that meant that “many millions of people will be starved to death”; a directive already contemplated by the Economic Staff East no later than 02 May 1941. [117]

Not alone in this interpretation of Hitler’s invasion of the Soviet Union as a move of continental expansion and one with an anti-Semitic eliminationist political intent, Hillgruber is joined by the likes of historian Karl Dietrich Bracher among others.[118] In his work, The German Dictatorship, Bracher called the invasion the consequence of Hitler’s “ideological obsession” and stated that “Hitler’s drive for territorial expansion and the relentless expansion of the SS state ushered in the final phase of National Socialist rule.”[119] That final phase proved disastrous for the Jews, Slavs, Roma-Sinti, and countless others – atop the reality that it also brought untold suffering to Hitler’s beloved German Volksgenossenas the British and American bomber forces unleashed their wrath turning the Reich to rubble; meanwhile the Red Army and the German army and the German Army as they counter-attacked.

Anti-Semitism and the Holocaust

Poster for The Eternal Jew(1940), directed by Fritz Hippler

Among scholars of the Nazi era, Hitler’s role and relationship to the regime and the Holocaust has been a source of consternation and acrimonious historiographical debate. Biographer Ian Kershawwrote that for historians, Hitler was “unreachable” and that he was “cocooned in the silence of the sources.” [120] What Kershaw Was Referenced by Hitler’s Signed Authorization (primary source documents) concerning the atrocities carried out by his Nazi underlings. Given the abounding circumstantial evidence in Hitler’s Speeches, writing in Mein KampfThis article is about administrative decisions taken by subordinates, and the recollections of those in his inner-circle, it seems that his political intention was for Jews, Slavs, and other “enemies” of the Nazi state to be persecuted without mercy. of how gradual the process actually developed. Hitler’s political role in Nazi policy and the Holocaust. One is termed intentionalist, represented by scholars who contend that virtually all Nazi policies (including the extermination of the Jews) were resultant from Hitler’s desires; The other school, entitled functionalist / structuralist, consists of scholars who see the intensification of Nazi government as a result of their master’s wishes,[121]

Either way, anti-Semitism always one of the most important aspects of Hitler’s political views. Historian Peter Longerich writes that “There can be no doubt that Hitler’s behavior during his entire political career … was characterized by radical antisemitism.” [122] Correspondingly, Germanic cultural and racial purity remained paramount in his understanding of the world, having once exclaimed, “The greatest danger is and remains for us, the alien racial poison in our body.All other dangers are transitory.” [123]

Hitler wrote his first antisemitic letter to Adolf Gemlich on September 16, 1919 stating that Jews were a race and not a religious group, and that the aim for the government “must unshakably be the removal of the Jews altogether”. [124] Throughout Mein Kampf , Hitler employs biological crudity by describing the Jews as “parasites” or “vermin.” [125] Reflecting back on the beginning of the First World War , Hitler makes the presumed statement that these “Hebrew corrupters” have been “held under poison gas” that it may have otherwise saved millions of German lives. [126]

Underlining the argument that Hitler had overt eliminationist intentions for the Jews is the quote from the 30 January 1939 Reichstag speech:

Today I want to be a prophet ounce more: Should the international Jewry of finance ( Finanzjudentum ) succeed, both within and beyond Europe, in plunging mankind into yet another world war, then the result will not be Bolshevization of the earth and the victory Jewry, but the annihilation ( Vernichtung ) of the Jewish race in Europe. [127]

German historian Klaus Hildebrand insisted that Hitler’s moral responsibility for the Holocaust was the culmination of his pathological hatred of the Jews and his ideology of “racial dogma” formed the basis of Nazi genocide. [128]Historian David Welch asserts that even if Hitler never gave the direct order for the implementation of the Final Solution, this is nothing more than a “red herring” as it fails to recognize his “leadership style” where Hitler’s simple verbal statements were sufficient to launch initiatives “from below”. Those “working toward the Fuhrer” would often implement “his totalitarian vision without written authority.” [129] Throughout his work, Hitler and the Final Solution,Heinrich Himmler refers to the Führer-Order concerning the destruction of the Jews, making it abundantly clear that Hitler had indeed, at the very least, verbally issued a command on the matter. [130] The diary entries of Propaganda Minister Joseph Goebbels allude to Hitler being the driving force behind the Nazi genocide, which he followed closely, and Goebbels also described Hitler as “uncompromising” about eliminating the Jews. [131]Taking the scale of the logistical operations that the Holocaust in the middle of a war, it is highly unlikely, if not impossible, that the extermination of so many people and the coordination of such an extensive effort could have occurred. absence of Hitler’s authorization. [132] As Welch relates, if Himmler was the “architect of genocide”, he was merely “an instrument of Hitler’s will.” [133] In the final analysis, Hitler was essentially omnipotent as the Führer of Nazi Germany with all encompassing power as the “supreme legislator, supreme administrator, and supreme judge” along with being “leader of the party, the Army, and the people. ” [134] Every major political decision and move in Nazi Germany was made at his discretion – to include the wholesale extermination of millions of people.

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