Hitler and the NSDAP


Explain why and how, Hitler and the NSDAP began to attract some support from people in Germany between 1919 and 1923.

There were many reasons why Hitler got into power: the defeat in world war one, Treaty of Versailles, ďstab in the back theoryĒ, weak leadership, fear of communist/revolutions, economic impact of world war one, reparations, hyperinflations of 1923, French invasion of the Ruhr.

In 1914 at the beginning of the war, the Germens were very confident that they were going to win the war. However, by 1917 it was very clear to the armyís High Command that they were not going to win the war. The army still had a little hope, when Bolshevik seizure of power in Petrograd in November 1917. Then in 1917, Germany was talking about peace with Russia, which led to the Treaty of Brest-Litovsk (March 1918). Under the Treaty of Brest-Litovsk Germany gained a lot of land from the east. Now they could concentrate on the west side of Germany. The extra men helped at first but the Allies did not give up, and then soon started to gain land. In September 1917, Germanyís army chiefs- Paul von Hindenburg, head of the high Commands, and Erich Ludendorff, his senior quartermaster general, realised that it was certain they would not win the war. Hindenburg and Ludendorff cared the most about the armyís reputation. They knew that if they lost the war, it would look bad on them, because they were the one who were responsible of the country while Germany was at war. Therefore, they asked the Kaiser if their power of the country could be give to civilian politicians. Prince Max of Baden, head of the German Red Cross and a political moderate, was appointed the Imperial Chancellor, in 1st October 1918.

However, the army were still sending out propaganda to the people, convincing them that they will win the war even when the army knows they will not. After four long years of blood, war and propaganda, people started to believe the posted and advertisements. Therefore, when the Weimar Government signed the Armistice in 1918, the German people did not understand why they had given up. They felt that that the new Government have signed them away to the Allies. They felt as if the Weimar Government has stabbed them in the back. Some people did not believe that they have been defeated because they Germanís were still in French territory when they were asked to stop fighting.

Then in June 1919, the Germanís were forced to sign the Treaty of Versailles. NO one liked the Treaty of Versailles because it was so unfair; the Germanís were given total blamed for starting the war (the war guilt clause). They had to pay £66000 million in reparations. All of Germanyís territories and colonies were taken away then shared out amongst the Allies. Germanyís proud army was reduced to 100,000 men, Conscription was banned-the soldiers had to join the army voluntarily, Germany was not allowed any armed vehicles, submarines or aircrafts, the navy was only allowed to build six-battle ship, the Rhineland became a demilitarised zone. This means that no German troops were allowed into that area; the Rhineland was important because it was the land separating France and Germany. Then they were not allowed to join the League of Nations when it opened, which the German people found very insulting.

It was very hard to have a stable government because, at times there could be up to four or five different parties in the coalition government, this made it very hard to run a government. All the different parties would have different ideas and they would not be able to agree on anything. The more parties there are in a coalition government the harder it is to solve problems, and the shorter time the government would run the country, before it collapses and another government is elected. In about 5 years, they could of when through around 5 to 7 different governments. This just shows who unstable the country is. This concept must be very hard for the more mature German citizens, because they were used to having strong leadership all their lives and now they have been through into a very unbalanced leadership.

The German economic was