When the American Stock Market crashed in October 1929 Germany took a massive toll. Germany already had borrowed money from the United States Banks to pay for reparations from World War 1. Now those banks wanted their money back. Germany was in turmoil, many were forced to sell their own homes and unemployment was creeping over Germany.
Hitler saw this as a perfect opportunity to gain influence over the despaired people. He blamed the Jewish and Communist traitors for the German economic instability and promised to restructure the German military and provide new jobs for those who needed them. He won over the military with his promises of a better military and won over the people with his promise of a better structured government.
The German President Paul von Hindenberg chose Hitler as the new chancellor of Germany. Hitler had deceived the whole German Republic. For he was planning on overthrowing it despite all of his promises that got him to where he was now.
The Nazis set fire to the Reichstag, which was the parliament of Berlin and Hitler framed over 4,000 enemies for this act of treason. Hitler then convinced the President to sign the Enabling Act, which placed all power in Hitler’s hands and the Nazi regime. The Act was to protect the people and Germany. Hitler planned on doing the opposite. Hitler now had the legal ability to kill politically enemies, control propaganda. Hitler planned an attack on all the remaining powers of Germany to make his rise to the top eminent, it was called Operation Hummingbird. Also known as Night of the Long Knives.
During the Night of the Long Knives, 85 people were killed for their political stances. Many of them were in the SA which was the Nazi paramilitary organization, who angered Hitler in the past. Hitler was threatened by corruption even though he had all the power of Nazi Germany. The Night of the Long Knives also gained Hitler control of the army.
On June 29th, 1934, Hitler’s evil scheme was put into effect. Hitler’s personal bodyguard the SS, were given very specific orders to sneak up on the SA leaders and generals, Hitler’s opposition, who were staying at a hotel called the Bad Weisse. The SS were to kidnap the SA leaders and bring them to the Nazi Headquarters where they were to be killed. The SS took the SA by surprise and successful threw the unsuspecting leaders into vehicles and drove off to the Nazi Headquarters. Once at Headquarters Hitler commanded the SS to mow them down with guns and that is what they did.
Many people questioned Hitler’s actions and were astounded by such cruelty. The army on the other hand praised Hitler for his heroism and the President of Germany even sent a telegram recognizing this great deed that Hitler had done. Hitler exclaimed to the German people that he did not commit these horrible actions for himself, he instead told the people that it was for them, and for the good of Germany. Hitler made it seem like he himself was doing a heroic action that no one else would ever do, and that it was completely necessary. Hitler always had a disagreement with the SA leaders, especially SA leader Ernest Rohm, who thought that the SA was a vital part of the Nazi Party. Added to Hitler’s dislike there many leaders in the SS who had dislikes for Rohm and just made the Night of the Long Knives more justifiable. Many of the SS leaders convinced Hitler that Rohm was planning a second revolution against Hitler. Hitler of course did not want to take any chances at having even the slightest uprising against him. Hitler even gave Rohm the option of shooting himself, but Rohm was too proud of what he did to do that and the SS did the deed instead.
The final event that rose Hitler to power was the death of German President Hindenberg. Hitler now, with the German army and his SS, was able to fuse the role as chancellor with the role as President and became the dictator of Germany with no one to stop him.
The leader of the SS, Heinrich Himmler, and not only that but he was also head of the police force, any act of opposition against the Nazi’s would be considered treason, and there didn’t even need to be evidence of it. There was never investigations of any crimes by the Nazi Party which quickly converted Germany to become Nazified because most were afraid for their own lives if they did not concur with Hitler’s ways.
Hitler then came up with the idea of concentration camps for all of his opposition, Jews, Communists and all others for who he considered to be a nuisance to Nazi Germany. The people in these camps faced harsh conditions with little food, and very hard abuse from the SS, who were running the camps.
The Night of the Long was the spark that set off the complete Nazification of Germany. The SS tore apart the fabric of the society that was Germany. The churches were torn apart, priests arrested, many were immediately placed in concentration camps. Hitler set up a Nazi oriented church system where kids would go Nazi Youth groups. Boys were taught to accept Nazi rule and competed in physical challenges to embrace the glory of being a Nazi. Women were taught to do chores while men were working.
In 1933 Jews were exiled from Nazi Germany. They were disbanded from society, leaving them jobless. Hitler implemented the Nuremburg laws in 1935 which took away Jewish citizenship and Jews were simply persecuted by the Nazis, they robbed thousands of Jewish shops tens of thousands were arrested without cause.
In the big picture of things the people of Germany were able to go on with their lives without much notice of change. The only ones who really had anything to worry about was the Nazi German opposition, who sadly either was killed or put into concentration camps. Although there would be spurs of Nazis who would abuse their powers and kill innocents of wrongdoing. Such as the Night of the Long Knives but in the end there was nothing that the Germans could do. Most of them felt better about Germany as a country because Hitler seemed to really care about rebuilding Germany and making it better, reestablishing glory to it especially after the embarrassment of the Treaty of Versailles, which Germany was still paying reparations for. Of course Hitler was only doing these things because he wanted to show is power, and to become a world dictator, but it was not too bad for the Germans who were living there as long as they kept their noses down.
The Night of the Long Knives was one of Hitler’s greatest accomplishments and was a huge establishment of a new form of Government. Hitler was established the ruler of the German people and there was no one and nothing that could take away the power he had, he was officially and legally above the law. Despite all of the horrors that Hitler had committed hardly anyone would turn their back on him, he was too powerful to argue with, despite some who did argue, who were immediately arrested or put into concentration camps for their treason. The killing of Rohm and the 400 followers of his was the start and the clear message of what life would be like for the Nazi German people. This is the way Hitler would convert Germany into the Nazi Germany dictatorship that he wanted to have complete and utter control over.
Hitler’s power and influence eventually got the best of him when he was at war with the Americans and the Soviet Union and it came to the point where he committed suicide by cyanide. Hitler is now one of the most renown dictators in the history of the world. He conquered the odds, lied, cheated, committed all evils possible to get to where he wanted to be. He was a complete success and millions of lives were taken by his word, he killed 400 men in the Knight of the Long Knives, and that was just the beginning. It led to the Nuremberg trials which Jews were killed for their treason to their country despite their innocence. Concentration camps were implemented and Germany became Anti-Jew, Anti-Communist, and they were executed and taken away from public office and jobs were taken. Hitler eliminated the SA at all costs, eliminated all possible opposition and made the people of Germany fear him. With fear Hitler was able to conquer Germany and make himself the one and only ruler of Germany. There was nothing that could stop him, nobody that could stop, he started out with hardly anything and rose to the top. With the German President’s death, it was imminent that he would use his power as Chancellor, and with all of the praise the President have given him, he was able to convince the German people, with of course the help of the German army, who pledged their loyalty to him, to accept him as their leader and dictator. The Germans were afraid and would not go against him and Hitler successfully became the complete dictator of Germany.
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