Tuesday, March 06, 2018

A bried but well-done cartoon version of how Hitler became Chancellor of Germany 1933

How did Hitler rise to power? - Alex Gendler and Anthony Hazard TED-Ed 07/18/2016

For a five-minute video, this is remarkably good. It gets the Versailles Treaty, the Beer Hall Putsch of 1923 and the Great Depression into the story, frames anti-Semitism in an accurate way, and presents Hitler as a skilled politician, which he was - very much to the detriment of the whole world including Germany.

I'm particularly impressed that it avoids completely one of my pet peeves in the accounts of Hitler's rise to power, the claim that the hyperinflation of 1923-24 led to Hitler seizing power in 1933. That argument only works if you pretty much ignore the Great Depression, which hit Germany very hard, the actual voting results from 1924-32, and the issues on which the Nazi Party campaigned. The Nazis did use parliamentary methods supplemented by street violence to come to power.

But their biggest vote total in clean elections came in summer 1932, after several years of Herbert-Hooverish economic polices that made the Depression much worse. And their vote total dropped in a second parliamentary election in 1932. There was another vote just after Hitler became Chancellor in 1933 which was semi-free at best. And even then the Nazis failed to get a majority.

There's a history that is a classic from 1938 but is still a valuable sources on the politics of the Nazis takeover, Why Hitler Came Into Power by Theodore Abel.

No comments: