Initial Consolidation of Power in Germany 1933-1934

800 Words4 Pages
Due to the failure of the Weimar Republic and general public dissatisfaction arising from poor economic conditions exacerbated by the Treaty of Versailles, coupled with the 1929 Wall Street Crash, German citizens were understandably desperate for change. Until this point in time the Nazi party, and Hitler, had been essentially unpopular. However, the economic situation ensured Hitler’s increasing popularity as the people looked toward more extreme but non-communist ideals. The initial consolidation of Nazi power in 1933 arose from key events such as the reichstag fire, implementation of the Enabling Law, removal of external and internal opposition, and the night of long knives. Although Hitler was appointed chancellor, the Nazi party was still outnumbered in the cabinet, so when the election was called in February 1933 Hitler knew that he must once again win the support of the public. At the same time a Communist Dutch named Marinus Van De Lubbe burnt down the Reichstag building which coincidently tremendously helped the Nazi party to consolidate its power. The event caused country wide panic and Hitler and the Nazi party used this panic to their advantage. They blamed communism for the fire and made it seem as if the country was in a state of emergency because of the threat of communism. This ultimately allowed for Hitler and the Nazi party to implement the "Reichstag Fire Decree" which allowed the government to restrict the liberty of the public. This included freedom of speech, freedom of association, letter openings and gave the Nazi's the power to deal with political opposition. This furthered the extend of Nazi control over the public due to the state of emergency and was paramount towards the consolidation of Nazi power. Once the February election concluded the Nazi's and DNVP won over 50% of the votes and hence gave them the majority. This allowed
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