The Night of the Long Knives Essay

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The Night of the Long Knives Describe and explain how and why Hitler consolidated his power by eliminating opposition and accommodating support in this event. Between 1929 and 1933, a series of events brought Adolf Hitler to power in the crumbling Weimar Republic; now facing economic crisis and political disunity. Although encountering great opposition from the general public and, particularly, the left wing, within a year of his appointment Hitler had already removed most, if not all, of the surrounding disapproval. However, even though opposition from the outside had been terminated, there still remained dangers from within the government and the Nazi Party itself. On one side, Hitler needed to gain the approval of the Reichswehr and, on the other; he had to reassert his power by eliminating any threat of opposition from the SA and its leader, Ernst Röhm. Hitler had to concede certain favours to the Reichswehr in order to gain its loyalty, while coercing the SA into approval. On the weekend of the 29th to the 30th of June, Hitler took quick action, sending SS squads throughout Germany to hunt down SA leaders (including Röhm), Communists, Social Democrats, and old enemies. After the events, almost unanimously, the army applauded the Hitler’s actions, even though conservatives and members of the military, such as ex-Chancellor Kurt von Schleicher, were among the victims. The ailing President Hindenburg, Germany's highly revered military hero, thanked Hitler for "nipping treason in the bud". The SA did not cease to exist as an organisation, but the Reichswehr absorbed most of its members. This way, Hitler conceded to the army the presence and position of the SA; that is, it became Germany’s most important military force. On the other hand, the remaining bits of opposition were coerced into approving Hitler’s authority, not only because the SA, the main
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