Compare and contrast Hitler's and Stalin's roads to power.
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Compare and contrast Hitler's and Stalin's roads to power. First and foremost, the inter-war years 1919-1939 were a period of dictators in Europe. Many historians consider tyrants - Hitler and Stalin - and their ideologies to be quite similar. These two despots were the most famous and probably the most bloody dictators in this period. No wonder these two are compared to one another. In addition, the scheme of taking power by any autocrat seems to be very simple: dissatisfaction from contemporary rules or death of the leader and skilful takeover by a person with some horrific vision of the future. But historic events are never as simple as that. Now, arises the interesting question if Hitler's and Stalin's roads to power were similar or different or maybe both options are true to same extent. Nevertheless, Hitler tried twice to gain power in a period 1923-1934 while Stalin only once in years 1924-1929. Firstly, similarities in consolidating oppressor's position will be discussed. ...read more.
and were not prepared to compromise and left beyond personal intrigues. What is more, left wing was divided itself - Zinoviev with Kamenev argued with Trotsky and KPD considered SPD as its main enemy. Besides in the Weimar Republic workers were weakened by unemployment and could not afford to strike against the Nazis. Moreover, there were almost no supporters of democracy and liberalism thanks to long authoritarian tradition. It might also be mentioned that in both countries Hitler and Stalin were underestimated. Austrian corporal was expected to be a puppet in the hands of the Right who would not last long, especially that there were only three Nazis in the government. Nobody remembered that he managed to bring party members together after the failure of the Münich Putsch and breaking the law in the Night of the Long Knives did not open the eyes of ordinary Germans. In the same way, 'Tovarishch Kartotekov' was considered as 'the grey blur', mediocre intellectual who is not able to win the contest for power. ...read more.
To sum up, both autocrats had the same aim - creating an image of themselves - using propaganda machine. Similarly, these tyrants appealed to the complaints and needs of majorities. In addition, Hitler had total control over his party, likewise Stalin. What is more, both despots made concessions and alliances. These dictators were respected, especially that they used terror and intimidation. Furthermore, they faced divided, weak and not having power to pose real threat opposition. Above all, their opponents - Kamenev, Zinoviev, Trotsky, Papen and others - underestimated these future tyrants and respected legal actions although they led to gaining power by Stalin or Hitler. However, on the contrary to Stalin, Hitler two times tried to gain power in the Weimar Republic and made people join a huge range of different organisations for everybody. Equally important is the fact that Hitler did not have strong position in the government and he had to act very carefully in order to become all-powerful leader of Germany. Taking everything into account, Hitler's and Stalin's roads to power are quite analogous and differences between these routes are caused by circumstances in which these two found themselves. ...read more.
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