The Nazi Experiment 1929-49

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October 1929

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1

October 1929

Wall street crash in America prompts worldwide depression, particularly impacts Germany (due to loans)

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6 million

Unemployment in 1932

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1/3

Amount of people who had no regular wages

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4

1930

Muller’s (grand coalition) cabinet all resign, after which the need for a chancellor to have a majority was ignored and Bruning (Z) was brought in

Mostly used Article 48

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5

1930 election

Prompted after Bruning gets Hindenburg to dissolve Reichstag as SPD disagree with finance reform

Extremist support grows at the expense of moderates: SPD = 24.5%, NSDAP = 18.3%, KPD = 13.1%

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6

109

Emergency decrees passed under Bruning (1930-32) compared to 29 Reichstag bills

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7

Bruning’s policies

Banned the SA

Negotiated the end of Reparations

Austerity programme with higher tax (unpopular)

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8

1932 presidential election

Hitler splits the vote in the first round, forcing a second, which Hindenburg wins

Increases Nazi confidence and makes SA ban unworkable (has 100k members by 1931)

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9

June 1932

Appointment of Papen as chancellor

Neither him or his cabinet are Reichstag members so have to rule by decree

Aimed to gain Nazi support by being anti communist, lifting SA bans and calling July elections

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10

July 1932

Papen forces a coup in Prussia to overthrow the SPD government and make himself Reich comissioner

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July 1932 elections

Extremist voteshare increases further, Nazis get more vote from MC & Farmers

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12

November 1932 election

Forced by Hitler after he rejects the vice-chancellorship and joins the KPD vote of no confidence, but Nazis lose votes slightly

Papen is replaced by Schleicher

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Schleicher’s policies

Tried to negotiate with Nazis by opening talks with Strasser, backfires as he is expelled from party

Tried to cancel Papen’s wage & benefit cuts to get WC on his side but failed and alienated Hindenburg

Persuaded Hindenburg to make Hitler chancellor with him as vice-chancellor

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14

Jan 1933

Hitler becomes chancellor - elites hope to use him but he starts consolidating his own power

Calls election and starts propaganda

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15

Feb 1933

Reichstag Fire is blamed on Communist

Hitler persuades Hindenburg to use article 48 “for protection of people and state” allowing Nazis to remove opponents

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16

1933 election

Nazis win 43.9% vote so use Zentrum and DNVP to get 2/3 majority to ban communists

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17

March 1933

Hitler passes “enabling act” giving him dictorial powers in the last ‘democratic’ Reichstag session

Only 94 socialists vote against it

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18

Gleischaltung

Process where every German institution has to conform to Nazi ideals

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19

April 1933

“law for restoration of professional civil service” allows Nazis to force Jews out of civil positions

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20

May 1933

All unions are banned, workers have to join D.A.F (german labour front)

New ‘academies’ (leagues) controlled academic jobs

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21

June 1933

SPD banned

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22

June 1933

“law against the formation of new parties”

deal is made with church where they keep out of politics in exchange for religious freedom

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23

Dec 1933

“law to establish unity of party and state” officially establishes one-party state (after Nazis get 92% in Nov ‘elections)

However parallel institutions are allowed to develop causing competitions between agencies e.g. lander ministers alongside reich govenors

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June 1934

Night of the Long Knives

Hitler wanted to gain support of army, who were hostile to SA, so rumors were spread about a potential coup

Allowed them to kill 86 “plotters”

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25

Aug 1934

Hindenburg dies and Hitler makes himself “Fuhrer”

Army swear loyalty to him

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26

Fuhrerprinzip

Belief in one strong leader

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27

Social Darwinism

“survival of the fittest” part of Nazi ideology that people live in competition and the strongest rise to the top

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28

Volksgemeinschaft

Aryans need to form tight knit communities in which class divisions/individualism is subordinate

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29

Goebbels

Minister for Propaganda

Utilised it heavily in schools/workplaces and helped introduce celebrations of Hitler / Nazi salute

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30

Blud and Boden

Phrased used to encourage agriculture / rural Germans but in practice little was done to assist them

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31

72, 6, 1

Cabinet meetings in 1933, 1937, 1938

Shows Hitler’s lack of involvement in formulating policy

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32

Working towards the Fuhrer

Subordinates created policies they believed that were in Hitler’s interest

e.g. 1942 Wansee Conference & Final Solution: Hitler was not there

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33

Himmler

Was head of the SS (the auxillary police - main terror agency)

Also became head of the Gestapo & Main police later on

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34

Lawyers

Had to be nazi members, and law was intepreted according to the “will of the Fuhrer”

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35

225,000

people convicted of political crimes 1933-39

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36

162,000

people placed in ‘protective custody’ without trial 1933-39

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37

Civil Disobedience

Included reading banned literature, protecting Jews, refusing to join Nazi organisations, supporting non-Nazi churches and groups

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38

1.3m

People sent to prison camps 1933-39

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39

Reich Church

Protestant church that endorsed the Nazis

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40

Confessional church

Breakaway protestant church opposing the Nazis, set up by Pastor Niemoller

He ended up in a concentration camp 1937-45

Churches overall posed little organised resitance but did motivate individuals

Overall attendance was maintained and even increased after 1939

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41

800

Pastors incacerated by 1937

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42

1938

Hitler combines role of supreme commander and war minister and replaced critical generals (around 16 overall) with nazis

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43

Effects of War on Nazis

Personal rivalries increased

Damage to the economy

Hitler preoccupied with foreign affairs

After 1943 Nazi popularity declined

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44

Swing clubs

Youth groups established in big cities

Rejected Nazi values, dressed in American clothes and danced to Jazz

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45

Eidelweiss Pirates

WC youth group who enjoyed attacking Hitler Youth. Some joined resistance e.g. one group helped army deserters, another killed head of Cologne Gestapo

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46

White Rose

Nazi opposition group developed by Sophie & Hans Scholl in Munich University. Distributed leaflets and spread anti-Nazi messages

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47

1939

Pastor Bonhoffer became involved with anti Nazi intellegence aiming to overthrow Hitler and helped Jews escape Germany

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48

1941

Catholic Bishop Von Galen condemns Nazi Euthanasia

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49

Abwher

Nazi military intelligence, was rife with resistance including the head of the agency: though they were later absorbed into the SS

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50

July 1944

Operation Valkerieye bomb plot almost kills Hitler: 5000 executed in response

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51

6.5m

Killed/Unaccounted for Germans after the war

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52

Feb 1945

Yalta conference with “big three” confirmed temporary occupation was needed after war, decided to divide & also give France a ‘zone’

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53

Four Ds

Demilitarisation, Decentralisation, Denzaification, Democratisation

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54

June 1945

Zones occupied & Berlin divided

German army disbanded & Nazis banned

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55

Soviet Zone

Had advantage of Berlin

Communists lead by Ulbricht established Lander governments under soviet military authority

Population 17.3m

Mainly rural, had key industry areas including Saxony but needed Ruhr coal imports

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56

Western Zones

Favoured ‘democratic’ govs but wanted to prevent Nazism & Communism so suspended political activity

Sep 1945 licensed some parties to have Lander elections, SPD, KPD, CDU, LDP

CDU lead by Adaneur dominated

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57

British Zone

Contained Ruhr with 87% of coal production and 70% of steel production

Agriculture dependent on imports

22.3m population

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58

US Zone

Modern manufacturing in some areas but needed coal imports

Good agriculture

17.2m population

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59

French Zone

Saar coalfields & Black forest timber

Some agriculture

15.9m population

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60

Potsdam Conference

July-Aug 1945, attended by “big 3” and saw specific differences in opinion over future development

Agreed to take reparations from own zones

Turned zones into seperate economic units

Main issue was Stalin pushing polish border into Germany meaning 1/4 territory lost

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61

Reparations

USSR were extensive and broke up/moved whole factories, had extra from allied zones

Allies were less demanding and wanted economic revival - from 1946 refused to pay USSR

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62

Denazification

1946 Nuremburg trials 19/22 Nazis convicted of war crimes

USSR imprisoned them at first but later offered amnesty to anyone willing to support socialism

West saw it as individual issue, many kept their positions

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63

Democratisation in East

Soviet Zone merged SPD & KPD forming SED, smaller left wing parties forced to coalition

Drew up plans for GDR in 1946 but hoped not to use

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64

Democratisation in West

Americans heavily promoted democracy

French were suspicious of the Germans

British wanted to impose their own processes

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65

Feb 1947

British & American zones merge into ‘Bizonia’ which became efficient for distributing Marshall Aid

Operated in Federal way, central gov with Lander representatives

By 1948 had a supreme court

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66

June 1947

USSR set up German Economic Commission in response to Bizonia, to coordinate Soviet economic policy

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67

1947-48

Ulbricht calls two “people’s congress” meetings to first try and go against division, and then made to draw up new constitution

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68

1948

Establishment of Bank Deutscher Lander in Western Zones: France are pressured to join but USSR refuse

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69

June 1948

Trizonia is formed and the Deustchmark is introduced. Soviets claim this breaks Potsdam terms

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70

June 1948

Road/Rail passage to Berlin is halted to ‘protect from currency’ and the Ostmark is introduced in the East

E.Berlin refuses to accept western stamps or currency

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71

June 1948

Temporary airlift begins to get supplies to Berlin, aimed to make Soviets back down but ended up lasting 11 months

Counter-Blockade cuts off steel, chemicals and manufactured goods

UN gets involved and agreement reached in May 1949

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72

FRG (West)

“Basic Law” allowed for provisional constitution, came into effect 1949

Aug 1949 held first national elections, CDU largest followed by SPD

Nov 1949 admitted to associate member status of council of Europe

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73

GDR (East)

1949 volkscongress elections held

Volksrat became provisional government, Ulbricht made deputy PM but retained much of his power

SMAD became soviet control commission, and KVP “peoples police” was set up

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74

350m

Fall in value of exports 1929-1932

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75

1700m marks

Budget deficit by 1929: Bruning tried to balance by implementing austerity/deplation and cutting spending

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76

1931 banking crisis

Government set up customs union with Austria, angering France who withdrew currency from Austrian banks

Caused both Austria’s and Germany’s largest banks to collapse

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77

Sep 1932

Papen issues emergency decree offering tax rebates for employers that took on new staff and relaxation of wage agreement system

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78

Nov 1932

Schleicher tries to win over unions with: public works, price-fixing and reduced land settlements in East Prussia. However, this alienated industrialists, including Hindenburg.

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79

12b marks

All peasant debts totalling … are Suspended as part of more ‘socialist’ Nazi policies

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80

Reich food estate

Introduced July 1933, laid down guaranteed prices for produce and increased protection tariffs

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81

Wehrwirtschaft

Economy prepared for war - priority so introduced Schact as minister for economics in 1934

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82

1933 Law to reduce unemployment

Increased government spending on public work schemes, subsidies for private construction and tax rebate and emergency release schemes

Development of amarmemt factories

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83

1935

Reintroduction of Conscription and creation of “Reich Labour Service” (RAD) where 18-25s had 6 months mandatory work

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84

Mefo Bills

Credit notes issued by the Reichsbank and guaranteed repayment

Repaying accounted for 50% gov expenditure 1935

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85

Autobahn

7000km commissioned in 1933, utilised surplus labour

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86

2.2b marks

Public expenditure/investment 1932, later exceeded by private investment

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87

New plan

Sep 1934: increased regulation of imports, development of trade with poorer countries

Strikes later banned

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88

Negligible

Unemployment in 1939

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89

Recovery under Schact

(minister of economics 1934-37, also head of Reichsbank)

Unemployment massively decreased however other factors did influence this

Balance of payments deficit remained and reserves of foreign currency stayed low

Food prices increased

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90

Four Year Plan

Created 1936 with Goering as director, aimed to prepare the economy for war

Included promoting synthetic materials, chemical industry and steelworks

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91

1/3

Raw materials still imported by 1939: at this point rearmament programmes were also incomplete

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92

Albert Speer

“Nazi Architect” appointed as minister of economics in 1942, helped organise economy

Established Central planning board to oversee distribution of raw materials

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93

50%

Increase in armament production within 6 months of planning board’s creation

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94

25,000+

Aircraft produced in 1944 (over 5x 1940 amount)

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95

Post-War East Economy

Centralised bank replaces private banks

Nationalised mines and factories

“SAGs” = soviet joint stock companies, “VEBs” = ex-Nazi companies, by 1948 these controlled 60% of industries

“Centralised command economy”

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96

Post-War west economy

Originally suggested living standards should meet 1932 level, industrial capacity should be 50% of 1938 level & industries would be dismantled

U.S. changed this and said wouldn’t be dismantled if useful

Marshall aid helped grow economy, raising production targets and allowing restructuring

Deutschmark stimulated growth and economy green 30% March-Aug 1938

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97

1933

Independent unions replaced by mandatory D.A.F

Created “strength through joy” scheme to organise workers free time and offers opportunities

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98

Nazis & Births

Nazis got rid of Abortion & Birth control centres to increase birth rates

Increased maternity benefits & Child income tax allowances

Honour cross of German motherhood

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99

Nazis & Marriage

Couples needed certificate of “fitness to marry”

“Unproductive” marriages could be ended

Couples cohabiting after marriage prohibited could be imprisoned

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100

Nazis & Women

“Law for reduction of unemployment” offers allowances to women who give up work

Marriage loans repayment reduced after birth of each child

Banned from jury service & holding senior party / Reichstag positions

Universities took only 10% female students (late 1930s)

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