Adolf Hitler (1889–1945)
Adolf Hitler, the leader of Nazi Germany, who had fascist policies that led to World War II, where millions of people were killed. He is one of the most notorious dictators in history. Despite all this, Hitler remains one of the most fascinating and enigmatic figures of the 20th century. His story is one of rising to power, military conquest, and ultimate downfall.
It is a story that continues to resonate today, nearly 80 years after the end of World War II. In this article, we will explore his early life, his rise to power, the horrific events of his regime, and his tragic end.
Adolf’s Early Life
Adolf was born on 20 April 1889 in Bruno Am, near Austria’s upper borders. Hitler and his family moved to Linz, the capital of Upper Austria, in 1898. His father wanted him to join the Habsburg civil service, but Hitler wanted to be a plastic artist.
His father, Alois, was a customs official, while his mother, Klara, kept the house and tended to Adolf and his younger sister, Paula. Adolf’s early years were happy ones. He excelled in school and was popular with his classmates.
However, tragedy struck the family when Adolf’s younger brother, Edmund, died of measles in 1900. Two years later, Klara also passed away from breast cancer. These deaths had a profound effect on Adolf, who became increasingly withdrawn and sullen.
Alois remarried in 1903, and Adolf’s new stepmother soon had a baby girl of her own. Adolf did not get along with his new mother and step-siblings and often retreated into his own world. It was around this time that he developed a strong interest in German nationalist politics.
As a teenager, Adolf moved to Vienna to study art. However, he failed to gain admission into the city’s prestigious Academy of Fine Arts. This rejection only deepened his feeling of inferiority and resentment towards Austria’s establishment.
He lived in Vienna from February 1908 to May 1913 before leaving for Munich. He used to earn his living through watercolour drawings and designs until World War I, which completely changed the course of his life. He joined the army, got wounded twice during the war (in 1916 and 1918), and won several medals.
World War I
Hitler served in France and Belgium with the 16th Bavarian Reserve Regiment, which was known as the List regiment, In relation to his first commander. The war ended with him receiving the rank of Jeffrey (a rank equivalent to a corporal in the British Army and a first-class soldier in the American armies).
He acted as a messenger among the armies; it was one of the most dangerous jobs on the Western Front and was often exposed to enemy fire. He also participated in a number of major battles on the Western Front, and these battles included the First Battle of Ypres, the Battle of the Somme, the Battle of Arras and the Battle of Passchendaele.
The Battle of Ypres took place in October 1914, where about 40,000 soldiers were killed in twenty days. The battalion of which he was a member had been reduced from two hundred and fifty to forty-two by December. The biographer John Keegan wrote that this experience made Hitler withdraw into isolation during the remaining years of the war.
Hitler was awarded two medals in recognition of his bravery in the war. He was awarded the Iron Cross, 2nd class, in 1914, and the Iron Cross, 1st class, in 1918. It is an honour rarely received by a soldier of the rank of Jeffrey. However, Hitler was not promoted to the rank of Unteroffizier (the equivalent of a corporal in the British Army) due to his lack of leadership skills from the point of view of his regiment commanders.
Some other historians say that the reason he was not promoted was that he was not a German citizen. Hitler’s assignments at military headquarters were usually risky but allowed him to continue producing his artwork. Hitler drew caricatures and educational graphics for an army newspaper.
In 1916, Hitler was wounded either in the groin or in the left thigh while participating in the Battle of the Somme but returned to the front again in March of 1917. He received the wounded insignia later that year. Sebastian Haffner noted Hitler’s experience at the front, explaining that it at least allowed him to understand military life.
Hitler was sent to the Military Hospital in Bazhafak in October 1918 after he was partially blind in the mustard gas attack near Ili in Belgium. He arrived with the truce news that occurred on November 11, 1918, while he was in the hospital during his recovery. Hitler was allowed to leave the hospital in November 1918 and then returned to Munich.
In 1919 he joined the media office of the Bavarian Military Administration. This office collected intelligence information on the civil political parties and provided the soldiers with “political education” against communism. In August 1919, he, as a teacher in those educational sessions, gave his first anti -Semitic speeches. A month later, he wrote in the newspapers for the first time about the anti -Semitic ideology, calling for the Jews away from Germany.
Nazi Party Leader
Hitler joined the Nazi Party in October 1919. He helped put the party’s political program in 1920. The program was based on anti -Semitic, expansionist nationalism, and anti-immigration. By 1921, Hitler, led by the Nazi Party, was alone in holding the Führer (leader). The number of members of the Nazi party increased in two years until it reached 55,000, and 4,000 men from the semi-military wing of the Nazi Party Sturmabteilung (Storm Battalion) supported it.
Adolf Hitler was the founder and leader of the Nazi Party, a radical political group that rose to power in Germany during the early 1920s. The Nazi Party advocated a number of aggressive and controversial policies, including the conquest of territory in Europe and the extermination of certain groups of people whom they deemed to be inferior.
Under Hitler’s leadership, the Nazi Party gained control of the German government in 1933. Hitler then embarked on a series of ambitious and often brutal policies, including the persecution of Jews and other minorities, the outbreak of World War II, and the development of nuclear weapons.
While Hitler’s actions led to the deaths of millions of people, his regime also oversaw some significant achievements, such as the construction of the Autobahn system and the organization of the 1936 Olympic Games in Berlin. His rule ultimately came to an end in 1945 when he committed suicide as Allied forces closed in on Berlin. In the aftermath of his death, many Germans were left to grapple with their complicity in Hitler’s crimes.
The Third Reich
Adolf Hitler’s reign as the dictator of Nazi Germany was one of the most tyrannical and oppressive regimes in history. Hitler and his Nazi Party controlled every aspect of German life, from the media to the economy to education. Any dissent or opposition was ruthlessly crushed. The Nazi regime also pursued a policy of racial segregation and anti-Semitism, persecuting and murdering millions of Jews in the Holocaust.
Having fully consolidated his hold on political power, Hitler tried to win the support of the masses for his policies by convincing most of the German people that he would save them from the wave of economic depression that swept the world.
He also tried to convince the people that he would get rid of the Treaty of Versailles, communism, and the Jewish Bolsheviks (who had negatively affected the communist movement in the period between the First and Second World Wars) as well as from the influence of other “undesirable” minorities. The Nazi eradicated every opposition he encountered through the process he called coordinating all regimes and merging them into one.
Hitler and Politics
After the end of World War I, Hitler remained in the army and returned to Munich, where he participated in the military funeral of the assassinated Bavarian Prime Minister Kurt Eisner. This is in contrast to his statements that he announced at a later time. Following the suppression of the Bavarian Soviet Republic, Hitler participated in the “National Thought” courses organized by the Department of Education and Propaganda of the Bavarian Reichswehr at the Fourth Main Command under the direction of Captain Karl Mayer.
The blame was laid on the Jewish people, whose members were scattered all over the world, on the Communists, and on politicians of all parties. Especially the Weimar coalition. In July 1919, Hitler was appointed as a police spy and was subordinate to the intelligence command of the Reichswehr National Defense Forces in order to influence other soldiers and infiltrate the ranks of a small party. It is the German Workers’ Party (DAP).
While exploring the party, Hitler was influenced by the anti-Semitic, nationalist, anti-capitalist and anti-Marxist ideas of party founder Anton Drexler. Hitler’s oratorical skills were also admired by Drexler, who invited him to join the party, becoming the party’s fifty-fifth member. Hitler also became the seventh member of the party’s Executive Committee. After a few years, Hitler claimed he was the party’s seventh founder.
Nazi Party forces attempted to overthrow the government in 1923, but the attempt failed and ended with the imprisonment of Adolf Hitler, the party’s leader at the time. The Beer Hall Putsch was a failed coup attempt by Hitler and the Nazi Party to seize power in Bavaria and Germany. The coup attempt took place from the evening of November 8 until the noon of November 9, 1923, and Adolf Hitler had decided to use the name of General Erich Ludendorff as a front in the coup attempt that ended in abject failure and imprisoned then-Nazi Party leader Adolf Hitler.
Hitler and Nazi Party officials rejected political participation in the Weimar elections and sought to overthrow the government in Bavaria, a state in the Republic of Weimar. The Bir Hall coup took place on November 9, 1923. After the coup, the court in Munich tried Hitler and other leaders of the revolutionary for great treason.
Hitler used the trial as a way to attack the system of parliamentary democracy and strengthen nationalist-based nationalism. A judgment was issued to condemn Hitler, but he was sentenced to a reduced penalty and was released after he spent only one year on the reservation.
He took advantage of his time in prison and began writing his autobiography in his book Mein Kampf (My Struggle), which was published in 1926. In the book, he clearly expressed his goal of creating racist and socialist nationalism and also disclosed his anti -Semitic vision of human history. He called for dictatorship within the country, military expansion, and the seizure of the residential space in the east. The Germans intended to purify this residential area in the east of its indigenous and less important population.
After his release from prison, Hitler reorganized and united the Nazi Party. He changed his political strategy to include participation in electoral policy and programs targeting new and disturbing voters, in addition to building bridges to overcome traditional conflicts in German society.
By using modern methods that reflect the concerns and hopes of potential voters, the Nazis also made a campaign aimed at:
- Renewing national defence capabilities.
- Restoring national sovereignty.
- Eliminating communism.
- Dropping the Treaty of Versailles.
- Overthrowing foreign political and cultural influence in Germany.
- Evaluating the moral corruption that they claim to create.
- Achieving economic prosperity.
- providing job opportunities.
Upon testing this strategy in the 1928 national parliamentary elections, the Nazis obtained a disappointing vote, which was 2.6% of the votes. With the beginning of the great depression in 1930, the Nazi revolution began significantly affecting the German population.
When the coalition majority government collapsed in March, the three-class parties resorted to emergency constitutional rulings to hold exceptional parliamentary elections in the hope of achieving a ruling majority that would exclude socialist Democrats or the political left from the permanent rule. When this manoeuvre failed, German governments from 1930 to 1932 relied on arbitration by a presidential decision instead of parliamentary approval.
The Nazis achieved their electoral achievements in 1930 by combining modern technology, modern political marketing research, and intimidation by spreading violence that officials denied their responsibility towards. The party’s youth energy has also helped, along with the fact that it was not involved with democratic governments in penetrating the electoral barriers. They acquired nearly one-fifth of the popular votes, and they attracted new, unemployed and disturbing voters.
Hitler was a strong and dazzling speaker, attracting the attention of a wide range of frustrated Germans who wanted to change. The Nazi movement continued to increase between 1931 and 1932 and generated a strong general feeling that Hitler would reach power and save the country from political paralysis, economic stagnation, and cultural and communist chaos. When he was nominated for the Presidency of the Republic in the spring of 1932, Hitler and the Nazis obtained 37.3% of the votes in the July 1932 elections.
They became the largest political party in Germany. The elections continued after 1930, accompanied by political incitement to violence in the streets, leading to a rapid increase in the Nazi party membership to reach 450,000, the military forces to more than 400 thousand, and the Special Security Forces to more than 50 thousand in 1932.
Chancellor of Germany
The Nazi share of votes fell to 33.7% in the parliamentary elections in November 1932. This decreased to weaken Hitler’s campaign and created a political and financial crisis in the Nazi party. Former counsellor Franz von Papen (who ruled from June to November 1932) rescued Hitler. Von Papen believed that the electoral losses of the Nazi party made them more likely to control them with the most efficient and least conservative elites in popularity.
Von Papen was ready to risk making Hitler a consultant to the German Nazi National Coalition, and Von Papen reached an agreement between Hitler and the German nationalists in early January 1933. President Paul von Hindenburg was convinced that Germany had no other options. Von Hindenburg reluctantly appointed Hitler as a consultant on January 30, 1933.
After his appointment as a consultant, Adolf Hitler began laying the foundations of the Nazi state. He seized all possible opportunities to turn Germany into one party’s dictatorship. German President Paul von Hindenburg died in August 1934.
Hitler obtained the support of the army after the funny bird on June 30, 1934. He was able to cancel the presidential system and declared himself a commander of the German people (Volk). All military personnel and all civilian employees were divided into a new section that included Hitler’s personal loyalty as the Führer (Leader). Hitler also continued to hold the position of Reich advisor (Prime Minister).
World War II
In Hitler’s view, it was imperative – in terms of his anti-British approach – to include Poland alongside Germany as a vassal state or even a neutral state in this conflict. Hitler believed that achieving this was a necessity on the strategic level on the one hand because it ensured the security of the eastern side of the Reich, and on the economic level, on the other hand, to avoid the negative impact of the British blockade.
Germany’s ambition was primarily to turn Poland into a vassal state, but by March 1939, when Poland had rejected German demands three times, Hitler resolved to destroy Poland in fulfilment of the main objective of German foreign policy 1939. On 3 April 1939, Hitler ordered his troops to begin preparing for the scheme known as the invasion of Poland (German: Fall Weiss). It was a plan to carry out the German invasion on August 25, 1939.
In August 1939, Hitler spoke with his military leaders about his master plan for 1939 and said: “To establish an acceptable relationship between Germany and Poland in order to fight the West.” But since the Poles would not agree to cooperate with Germany in order to establish an “acceptable relationship” (meaning they would agree to Poland becoming a German client state), Hitler saw no alternative to Poland’s obliteration.
To create a pretext for the aggression against Poland, Hitler demanded the annexation of the self-governing city of Danzig, as well as his right to create “additional” regional routes through the Polish Corridor that had been carved out of Germany against her will by the Treaty of Versailles. For Hitler, Danzig was just a pretext for his aggression against Poland, just as he had done in the case of the Sudetenland region in 1938 and throughout 1939.
While the Danzig affair was highlighted as one of the Germans’ complaints, the Germans usually refused to enter into discussions on the issue. A contrast emerged in Hitler’s plans between his long-term anti-British approach and his current foreign policy over the course of 1939, which likely would have led to a general war after actions such as the assault on Poland.
Hitler overcame his rupture between his short-term and long-term goals with the help of Foreign Minister Ribbentrop, who told Hitler that France and Britain would not keep their promises to Poland and that any war between Germany and Poland would therefore be a limited regional war.
Adolf Hitler’s reign as a dictator during World War II is one of the most well-known and discussed periods in history. Hitler’s actions and beliefs led to the unimaginable horrors of the Holocaust, as well as the devastation of much of Europe during the war.
Despite all that we now know about Hitler and his regime, there are still many unanswered questions about his motivations and what drove him to such extremes. Was he simply a madman, or was he truly convinced that his actions were justified? We may never know the answer to these questions, but studying Hitler and World War II remains essential in order to ensure that such atrocities never happen again.
By the end of 1944, the Red Army had forced the Germans back into Central Europe, and the forces of the Western Allies were advancing toward Germany. Hitler realized that Germany had lost the war but did not allow the withdrawal. Hitler hoped to negotiate peace unilaterally with the Americans and British. A hope bolstered by the death of Franklin D. Roosevelt on April 12, 1945.
Hitler’s stubbornness and contempt allowed military realities to be taken into account in the continuation of the Holocaust. Hitler also ordered the complete destruction of all German industrial infrastructure before it fell into the hands of the Allied forces. He said that Germany’s failure to win the war led to it losing its right to stay.
Thus, Hitler decided that the whole nation must end with him. Hitler entrusted the implementation of the scorched earth plan (destroy everything that could benefit the enemy before withdrawing from the land) to the Minister of Armaments Albert Speer, who did not obey his commander’s order.
In April 1945, Soviet forces attacked the outskirts of Berlin. Hitler found himself in a situation in which his pursuers forced him to flee to the mountains of Bavaria so that he could confront them on a final round in the national stronghold where the remaining remnants of forces had sought refuge. But Hitler was determined to live or perish in his country’s capital.
On April 20, Hitler celebrated his 56th birthday in the Berlin Bunker (Führerbunker) below the Reich Chancellery (Reichskanzlei). The commander of the besieged garrison at Fort Breslau (Festung Breslau), General Hermann Niehoff, distributed chocolates to the besieged troops in celebration of the commander’s birthday.
On April 30, 1945, after violent street-to-street fighting in Berlin, while Soviet forces were within a block or two of the Reich Chancellery, Hitler committed suicide by shooting himself in the mouth with a cyanide capsule. Hitler’s body and that of Eva Braun – his lover, whom he had married the day before he committed suicide and some of the auxiliary officers in the commander’s bunker poured a lot of gasoline on the bodies and set them on fire while the Red Army continued its advance, raining bombs on the city.
In the second of May, Berlin surrendered. In the years following the war, there was conflicting information about the fate of what remained of Hitler’s remains. After the dissolution of the Soviet Union, information came from reports kept in the Soviet archives that the bodies of Hitler, Eva Braun, Joseph Goebbels, his wife Magda Goebbels, the six Goebbels children, General Hans Krebs and the dogs that Hitler secretly owned were buried in cemeteries near the city of Rathenau in Brandenburg.
In 1970, the Soviets opened the cemetery in which they were buried, and the remains they were found were cremated and scattered in the Elbe River. According to information from the Russian Federal Security Service, part of a human skull was kept in the archives of the device and exhibited in an exhibition in 2000; It is one of the remains that remained from Hitler’s body and is considered all that remains of this remains. Many historians and researchers have questioned the fact that this part of the skull belonged to Hitler’s remains.
Hitler’s personality carries several contradictions, and the media shows him as a dictatorial personality that wants to destroy the world. Some describe him as the devil, and others accuse him of being the bomber of the war and the reason behind the massacres that claimed thousands of people, and he was also accused of anti-Semitism. Hitler’s personality remains a controversial figure globally, as the media often show the disadvantages of his personality, most notably anti-Semitism, but Hitler has advantages in addition to his bad deeds.
Hitler’s death marked the end of one of the most brutal dictatorships in history. His reign of terror left millions of dead, homeless, orphans, and devastated people, and the world forever changed. Hitler’s impact is still felt today, nearly 75 years after his death.
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