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THE ROAD TO DICTATORSHIP: GERMANY 1933-1939. Leaving Cert History. The Weimar Republic 1919-1933. January 1919 at Weimar. Liberal and democratic. Reichstag and Reichrat (like senate) Crushed the Spartacist rebellion the same month. The Treaty of Versailles. Not negotiated

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  1. THE ROAD TO DICTATORSHIP:GERMANY 1933-1939 Leaving Cert History

  2. The Weimar Republic 1919-1933 • January 1919 at Weimar. • Liberal and democratic. • Reichstag and Reichrat (like senate) • Crushed the Spartacist rebellion the same month.

  3. The Treaty of Versailles • Not negotiated • Article 231 ‘guilt clause’ and loss of land angered Germans • Weimar government blamed. • Wolfgang Kapp led extreme nationalists and soldiers (freikorps) in a march on Berlin. • A general strike supporting the government ended the Putsch. • £6,600 million Reparations • 1923 failure to pay French and Belgian troops occupied the Ruhr. • German workers went on strike. • Currency collapsed.

  4. The Streseman Era • Foreign Minister 1923-29 • Believed they should try to fulfil Versailles to make Germany ‘acceptable’ again. • Ended passive resistance and brought in a new currency (Rentenmark) • 1924 the American Dawes Plan eased repayment schedule and gave a loan. • 1929 the Young Plan reduced the amount to £2000 million. • Signed Locarno Pact accepting Germany’s borders. • Germany accepted into the League of Nations. • The economy picked up but he died in 1929

  5. The Great Depression • US loans stopped. • The government cut expenditure. • Unemployment soared to over 6 million. Tenants evicted. Shops empty. • Democracy was blamed. Germans not used to it. • Weak coalition governments contrasted with Bismarck’s days. • President Hindenburg sacked the PM Heinrich Bruning and Franz Von Papen took over. • In 1933 Hitler took over. He promised a lot.

  6. Hitler and the Nazi Party

  7. Hitler’s Early Years (listed) • Braunau in Austria • Failed to get into Vienna art college • Iron cross for the corporal • War ended while he recovered from gas attack. He felt betrayed.

  8. Nazi Party • Sent to investigate Anton Drexler’s German Workers Party and joined it. • His fanatical right wing views and mesmerising speeches gathered support. • He became leader and renamed it the National Socialist German Workers’ Party.

  9. The Brownshirts • SA or Stormtroopers were gangsters who protected Hitler’s rallies and broke up others. • By 1923 they numbered 15,000 and were armed. • The Swastika was party of the effort to create a religious aura.

  10. The Beer Hall Putsch • 1923 economy bad. Hitler thought it a good time for rebellion. • Had General Ludendorff’s support. • Police killed 16 and they gave up

  11. Landsberg Prison • Got 5 years and served 9 months. • Used trial well • Wrote Mein Kampf

  12. Nazi Ideas • Aryan master race • Jews to blame for Germany’s ills • Lebensraum • Communism evil • Treaty of Versailles torn up • Totalitarianism

  13. The Nazis Seize Power • 1920s economy improved and the Nazis were banned. • Hitler seemed to become democratic and the ban was lifted. • He reorganised the party. • Sections for women and children were established. • His team: • Goebbles. Propaganda • Goring. Second in command • Hess. Hitler’s secretary • Himmler Law and order • Alfred Rosenberg. Party philosopher.

  14. The Breakthrough • 1928 got only 12 seats. • The Depression struck. • Hitler promised jobs, land to tenants, government contracts to business and to build up the army. • 1932 they had 230 seats out of 650. • Hindenburg didn’t like Hitler but Von Papen and then Von Schleicher did not have the support of the Reichstag and eventually had to make Hitler chancellor in 1933.

  15. 1933 Election • 1933 H called another election • Goring turned 50,000 SA into police and opposition disappeared. • Reichstag fire blamed on a Dutch socialist. • Hindenburg issued an emergency decree and Communists were banned and jailed. • Did not get an overall majority • March 1933 the Enabling Act allowed Hitler to act without parliament. • All other parties banned. • State governments dismissed and replaced with Reich governers. • The Nazi run Labour Front replaced the trade union movement. • 1934 Hindenburg died and H became Fuhrer.

  16. The Night of the Long Knives • Rohm in charge of 2 million SA and criticised H for taking employers side. • 30th June 200 killed by the SS led by Himmler.

  17. The Nazi Economy • Minister for Finance Hjalmar Schacht. His aim was autarky (self-sufficiency) • Public works such as Autobahn created jobs • Rearmament created jobs and iron industry boomed. • Conscription • Industry encouraged (Volkswagen) • Imprisonment of Jews, communists and other opponents created jobs

  18. Hitler’s Foreign Policy • Main aims were to get rid of the Treaty of Versailles and Lebensraum.

  19. Rearmament • Began by asking that other countries disarm as Germany could not defend itself. • When they refused he left the Disarmament Conference and the League of Nations in 1933. • 1935 Goring was forming the Luftwaffe and Conscription was introduced. • 1935 Naval Agreement with Britain allowed Germany to have 35% of Britains ships and the same number of submarines. Versailles was at an end. • 1935 Italy invaded Abyssinia and the Stresa Front was at an end.

  20. Invasion of the Rhineland • 1936 3 battalions sent in with orders to retreat if they met resistance. They did not. • Now Hitler would continue to gamble

  21. Rome-Berlin Axis • 1935 after Abyssinia Hitler ignored the League’s sanctions. • Hitler promised not to claim German-speaking Tyrol • Both helped Franco. • 1936 Rome-Berlin axis signed. Vague support of each other. • 1937 Anti Comintern pact with Japan. • 1939 Pact of Steel a military alliance.

  22. Anchluss • Once part of Germany and German speaking. • Anchluss forbidden by Versailles. • 1938 the Nazi, Seyss-Inquart, replaced Schuschnigg as PM. • He ‘appealed’ to Hitler to send in troops to prevent civil war. • France and GB protested but did nothing.

  23. The Sudetenland • 2 million Germans • Hitler told Sudeten leaders to make complaints about discrimination. • Chamberlain believed that if all Germans were in Germany, Hitler would stop (appeasement).

  24. Munich Conference 1938 • Mussolini agreed to try to persuade Hitler. • Mussolini, Chamberlain, Daladier and Hitler met. • Neither Czechoslovakia nor USSR invited. • 1st October 1938 Germany took Sudetenland • Chamberlain claimed ‘peace with honour’ • March 1939 Hitler took the rest of Czechoslovakia.

  25. Polish Guarantee • Britain and France armed and introduced conscription. • Both countries gave Poland a guarantee that they would help if Poland were attacked.

  26. The Nazi-Soviet Pact • Hitler believed a deal with Stalin would frighten Britain and France from helping Poland. • Also he did not want war on 2 fronts. • Stalin felt that he would be left alone against the germans. • Stalin also wanted time. • Molotov-Ribbentrop Pact. • To outsiders it was a10 year non-aggression pact. There were secret clauses dividing Poland between them and giving USSR the Balkan States.

  27. War • 31 August 1939 Germany claimed a radio station had been attacked by Poles. • 1st September Germany invaded Poland • 3rd Britain and France declared war.

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