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Nazi Germany - The Consolidation of Power 1933-34

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Nazi Germany - The Consolidation of Power 1933-34 The Legal Revolution 1/ Von Papen felt able to boast to a friend following Hitler's appointment as Chancellor in January 1333 saying "In two months we'll have pushed Hitler into a corner so hard that he'll be squeaking" because he felt that he had limited Hitler's power in the government as there were only two other Nazi's in the government, and the President Hiddenburg was very weary of Hitler. 2/ Hitler's position was not as strong at the outset of his Chancellorship because there were only three Nazi's including himself, there others being Wilhelm Frick and Hermann G�ring, in the government of nine members which made it very difficult for Hitler to get his own way. He also did not have the two-thirds majority that he required to make decision without the Reichstag. President Hiddenburg also openly resented Hitler. 3/ Despite not having a strong position at the start of Hitler's Chancellorship the Nazi's and Hitler did have many advantages. ...read more.


Hitler made an "Appeal to the German People" on 31st January 1933 where he blamed the violence on the democratic government and the terrorist activities of the communists. He tried to build up support for the party by claiming that the only way to end the violence and restore the national pride of Germany. 3/ The Nazi financial state improved significantly following Hitler becoming chancellor because big businesses began investing money to try and strengthen the position of the Nazis to make them more resistant to the threat of communism. They also had the treasury of Germany to use how they wanted. 4/ On the 27th February 1933, the Reichstag building was set on fire and a Dutch communist called Van Der Lubbe was caught near by with firelighters. The next day Frick drew up the "Decree for the Protection of People and State" which was signed by Hiddenburg after Hitler persuaded him that it was burnt down in a communist plot and Hitler needed emergency powers to deal with it. ...read more.


At the ceremony there was any empty seat for the Kaiser, the Crown prince, Hiddenburg and the Army's leading generals, aligning the party with the old German regime which appealed the Nationalist party just two days before the vote on the Enabling Bill. 5/ To ensure the Enabling Act was passed, the Kroll Opera House where the new Reichstag met was lined with armed SA and SS men. Those communists not already in prison were refused entrance. A mob of SA chanted "Give us the bill or else fire and murder" further intimidating anyone who refused to vote for the Nazi's. 6/ To gain the support of the Catholic Centre party Hitler provided an assurance that there would be no new Kulterkampf, that he would respect and uphold the morals of the Catholic Church and that he was negotiating a Concordat with the pope. 7/ The Enabling Act was passed by 444 to 94 votes with only the Social Democrats voting against the Bill. 8/ Bracher called this a legal revolution because within a few weeks, the Nazi party had given himself the powers to dismantle the German democracy, all in a legal manner despite not having a two-thirds majority in the Reichstag. Nick Clarke - 1 - ...read more.

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