How Hitler Won Over the German People

February 2, 2008

Very interesting article posted on Der Spiegel‘s International site.

 THE FÜHRER MYTH

There were still many Germans who were skeptical of Hitler when he became chancellor in 1933. But Führer propaganda and military success soon turned him into an idol. The adulation helped make the Third Reich catastrophe possible. 

…German troops marched into the demilitarized zone of the Rhineland. In a spectacular move that fully exposed the weakness of the western democracies, Hitler could celebrate his greatest triumph in foreign policy to date. The domestic problems of previous months — shortage of foodstuffs, high prices, low wages and, in Catholic areas, much antagonism towards the regime over the struggle between the church and state were temporarily forgotten in the euphoria. 

(The Führer cult) was a manufactured consensus, a propaganda construct, with repression of political opponents, “racial enemies” and other outsiders to the proclaimed “national community” as the other side of the coin. The “superman” image of Hitler amounted to the central component of the fabrication. 

http://www.spiegel.de/international/germany/0,1518,531909,00.html

Map: Election results for the National Socialist Party in Weimar Germany, 1932 general election

http://www.spiegel.de/international/germany/0,1518,grossbild-1081636-531909,00.html

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