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Understanding Nazi Germany

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Understanding Nazi Germany

A response: The Nazis, Part One: Helped into Power

The Holocaust proved to be nothing short of a display of great human injustice and is undoubtedly the most tragic incident of racist and political persecution done from one human to another. The hardest thing for mankind to accept about the occurrence is that it happened in a not-so-distant time where humans were no doubt conscious and productive, industrialized, and full of culture, education and technology Ð'- far from the barbarians we associate with the wars of Ancient history or even the enslavement of others based on race within the past couple hundred of years. It is invaluable that we understand what motivated and justified Hitler and the Nazis to the conclusion that the "final solution" would be to exterminate an entire race. In the video documentary, The Nazis: Part One, Helped into Power, this is addressed.

Out of principle, it is hard for Americans, whom have grown up glorifying the idea of democracy and liberty, to understand how a leader like Hitler who openly endorsed fanaticism and racism came into power. Understanding the context of the Holocaust is, therefore, necessary. Hitler's rise occurred all within the period between WWI and WWII Ð'- a time of great economic suffering for Germany. Due to the loss of WWI, many war debts needed to be paid, by a country that had been scavenged by the war effort. The stock market crash in America that lead to the Great Depression also had a profound effect on Europe, and the already struggling Germany was hit hard. The depression lead to an economic crisis in agriculture, causing unemployment to rise in 1931. Were it not for this struggle, Nazis would never have come to power Ð'- indeed, in 1924 when there was a temporary and slight restoring of the economy, the Nazi ideology "became irrelevant."

Germans turned to the Nazis because they provided a reason for this struggle. It is hard for any country to accept the loss of a war, and the Nazis placed blame on a specific demographic Ð'- the Jews and Communists. In Mein Kampf, Hitler points out that five of the seven Communist leaders were Jewish. Building off of long



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