Ellis Washington
Adolf Hitler: The March to War (1933-1939)
By Ellis Washington
October 7, 2015

If this was a rape of the Austrians, then the Austrians liked being raped.

~ Norwegian Newspaper, March 1938

The great strength of the totalitarian state is that it forces those who fear it to imitate it.

~ Hitler

One of the most enduring propaganda images of the Third Reich – the omnipotent Führer (with Himmler and Lutze) in front of 160,000 Germans arraigned in perfect geometrical formation (1934).

Hitler appointed Chancellor of Germany

By late 1932 it was evident that Paul von Hindenburg would likely win the presidential elections in Germany which would bring to an end to the failed, feckless government of the Weimar Republic, yet Hindenburg did not have enough votes to win a governing plurality (majority) at the Reichstag (German Parliament). Therefore, the deficiency of an operative government provoked two leading politicians, Franz von Papen and Alfred Hugenberg, together with a coalition of other major capitalists and businessmen to draft a letter to Hindenburg. The signatories pressed Hindenburg to appoint Hitler as chancellor of Germany, the effective leader of a government "independent from parliamentary parties." They believed that the moribund and ineffectual Hindenburg needed an infusion of dynamism and charisma which Hitler had in abundance and Hitler would in turn "enrapture millions of people."

Hindenburg grudgingly decided to appoint Hitler as Chancellor after two additional parliamentary elections – in July and November 1932 – all failed to give him his coveted coalition government. Hitler would not relent; he led a transitory coalition government of the NSDAP and Hugenberg's party, the German National People's Party (DNVP). After months of marathon negotiations, Hitler, like he repeatedly did throughout his political career, arose like the mythical Phoenix from the ashes of seemingly political defeat to be triumphant and on 30 January 1933 he fulfilled his promise to himself back in 1919 to become Germany's Man of Destiny – Hitler was now the Chancellor of Germany. His new NSDAP cabinet gained three positions, in addition to Hitler being was named Chancellor, Wilhelm Frick Minister was appointed of the Interior, and Hermann Goring Minister of the Interior for Prussia. Hitler, in his patented Machiavellian manner, mandated that these political posts be given to his Nazi cronies as a means to seize control over the police of Germany – a penultimate a step towards seizing absolute power as Germany's Der Führer.

The Reichstag Fire: February 27, 1933

In an earlier essay, I wrote that Hitler's Reichstag fire solidified Hitler's tyrannical power over the German people. 'On February 27, 1933, just after 9:00 pm, the Berlin Fire Department was alerted that the Reichstag was burning. The building was virtually destroyed by the blaze when extinguished by the firemen at 11:30 pm. Upon inspection the firemen and police found twenty bundles of inflammable material (firelighters) unburned lying throughout the ruins. That evening Hitler was having dinner with Hermann Goering at the apartment of Joseph Goebbels in Berlin.

Upon receiving the news, Hitler and Goebbels' immediately left the apartment and drove the few blocks to the Reichstag, just as the firemen had brought the fire under control. Meeting Hermann Goering at the Reichstag, he proclaimed to Hitler, "This is Communist outrage! One of the Communist culprits has been arrested." Hitler would characterize the fire a "sign from God" and prophesied it was a Fanal (signal) predestined to mark the commencement of a Communist Putsch (revolution) that Hitler was ordained to utterly annihilate.'

Hitler Enacts Martial Law: Enabling Acts of March 1933

Hitler's first official act after January 30, 1933 when he was sworn in as Chancellor and leader of the coalition government was to insist that German President Paul von Hindenburg immediately disband the (German Parliament) and demand new parliamentary elections. Hindenburg, then a very old man whose' s political heyday was during the times of Otto von Bismarck of the 1870s, believed Goering's lies that the Reichstag fire was a Communist plot and quickly acceded to Hitler's demands and new parliamentary elections would be held on March 5, 1933 in the name of national security. Hitler, ever the opportunist, concocted the Machiavellian scheme to first consolidate a National Socialist majority controlled by his Nazi Party, and then quickly secure his position as dictator of Germany by combining his present position as Chancellor with that of President of Germany and eliminate all Communist resistance. And who would stop him? Hindenburg was old and not up for a fight, but Hitler needed the ubiquitous Nazi Pretext that he had used so many times in the past to provide him (and the German people) the necessary reason to seize absolute power.

Hitler's chance would soon come to achieve his desired revolution in the context of the societal chaos caused by the Reichstag fire together with Hitler using pseudo-legal strictures to eliminate democracy on March 24, 1933 by passing the Enabling Act or Law to Remedy the Distress of the People and the Reich (The Enabling Act). The Enabling Act was a special law which gave the Chancellor the power to pass laws without the participation of the Reichstag; to essentially rule as a dictator (e.g., President Barack Obama [2009-2017]). Ironically Hitler's new dictatorial powers were allowable under the old Weimar Constitution (1919-1932) whereby the President could rule by decree in times of emergency using his Article 48 powers. Nevertheless, the extraordinary new powers of Hitler's Enabling Act went even further than most historian are aware – Hitler's Enabling Act empowered the Chancellor (Hitler), not the President (von Hindenburg) to wield these immense and dangerous powers over the German people.

Hitler once said, "The great strength of the totalitarian state is that it forces those who fear it to imitate it." Applying Hitler's aphorism here into political policy he thus always believed in the cowardice and the manipulation of human nature, in fact it would have been impossible for the Nazis to seize power in the manner in which they did without these twin tactics of human cowardice and human nature the Nazis systematically exploited under the twin policies – Glieshaltung (forcing into line) to form a new, existential Nazi Weltanschauung (worldview). Therefore, after Hitler decreed that the Enabling Acts (essentially martial law) be reestablished in Germany, the Supreme Court did nothing to contest the lawfulness of this fascist act. Thus, the German Court recognized the majority vote, ignoring the absence of the Communist representatives and the Social Democrats who arrested, and many of them killed, for allegedly trying to topple the Nazi Reich by destroying the Reichstag by burning the Parliament down.

Like we will later see with the medical establishment giving legitimacy to Nazi racialist, eugenicist hygiene policy, in effect, most judges believed in the legal legitimacy of Hitler's draconian political policies and therefore failed to recognize why the Nazis declared a "Nazi Revolution." Erich Schultze, one of the first Supreme Court judges to join the Nazi party, declared that the term "revolution" did not refer to an overthrow of the established order but rather to Hitler's radically different ideas – what the Nazis called Weltanschauung (worldview). In the end, German judges – who were among the few who might have challenged Nazi objectives – viewed Hitler's government as legitimate and continued to regard themselves as state servants who owed him their allegiance and support, according to the Holocaust Encyclopedia. With Hitler's fascist Enabling Acts now firmly in place and the German people accepting them, all that was necessary was for Hitler to step into his destiny as Der Führer (the Leader) which became official on August 2, 1934.

Nazi Economy and Culture

Hitler appointed Hjalmar Schacht as Minister of Economics of the Reichsbank in August 1934, yet this bureaucratic position had an aggressive military component for in 1935 he was also appointed as Plenipotentiary for War Economy whose duties included preparing the economy for war. Under Schacht's leadership unemployment went from six million in 1932 to one million in 1936. These draconian rebuilding and rearmament measures under the Nazi Reich were funded through Mefo bills, printing money, and appropriating the possessions and money of people the Nazis called "enemies of the State," especially the Jews.

As the Nazis rampaged throughout Germany, stealing money and possessions from the Jews and other "enemies of the State," these valuable resources were used by Hitler to build the largest infrastructure improvement projects in German history, including the construction of dams, autobahns (the Nazis invented the freeway system), railroads, and other civil developments. Hitler's with his young protégé and Minister of Architecture, Albert Speer, sponsored government architecture on an immense scale. Speer was the major figure in executing Hitler's neoclassicist reinterpretation of German culture and was placed in charge of the proposed architectural renovations of Berlin, including designing a new future Berlin called "Germania." In 1936, Hitler opened the summer Olympic Games in Berlin, but behind the whitewashed cites where the Olympic venues were held, hid Jewish ghettos, concentration camps, work camps, death camps, diabolical experiments in Social Darwinism, racialist eugenics and the beginnings of natural selection, the Nazis would later ubiquitously call the Final Solution or the eradication of all Jews in Europe.

Nazi Racial Hygiene, 1933-1939

During Hitler's nihilist march to war: 1933-1939, the Nazis were able to rebuild their military machine to be the strongest in the world and they achieved this feat virtually in secret for the European Powers were cowardly and feckless and Hitler exploited their lack of will to enforce the provisions of the 1919 Treaty of Versailles which strictly restricted the size and scope of the German military. Nevertheless, as important as militarism was to the Reich, Nazism was arguably more concerned with "applied biology," according to Hitler's deputy Rudolf Hess. Most German doctors, scientists and the Academy who had promoted racialist hygiene philosophies before 1933 now enthusiastically incorporated the Third Reich's importance on Social Darwinism, biology and heredity, like today under Climate Change hysteria, in the 1930s-40s racialist eugenics in Nazi Germany was where the new career prospects, and the coveted Nazi Reich money for research projects could be found.

Since the Nazis were building the largest military in the world, they needed many young, strong people to fill the Nazi legions and thus became obsessed with the trend of falling birthrates. In October 1935 the Nazi Reich enacted The Marital Health Law which prohibited unions between the "hereditarily healthy" and persons deemed genetically unfit (e.g., Jews, Gypsies, the insane, religious minorities, the handicapped, etc.). Getting married and having children became a national duty for the "racially fit." In a speech on September 8, 1934, Hitler proclaimed: "In my state, the mother is the most important citizen." On July 14, 1933, the Nazi dictatorship fulfilled the long-held dreams of eugenics proponents by enacting the Law for the Prevention of Genetically Diseased Offspring, Individuals who were subject to the law were those men and women who "suffered" from any of nine conditions assumed to be hereditary: feeblemindedness, schizophrenia, manic-depressive disorder, genetic epilepsy, Huntington's chorea (a fatal form of dementia), genetic blindness, genetic deafness, severe physical deformity, and chronic alcoholism, according to the Holocaust Encyclopedia.

How America's Eugenics Movement inspired the Nazis

The Nazis also learned a tremendous amount of research and information from the American eugenicist movement which was much older (circa 1860s) and more developed than that in Nazi Germany. Like in America, in Nazi Germany the medical community and the Academy were all in full support of the most ghastly medical experiments racial minorities, the infirm and other "undesirables" as long as it was given scientific legitimacy under the self-serving banner of "Racial Hygiene."

Special hereditary health courts gave a phony impression of due process to the involuntary sterilization policies as the choice to sterilize was generally perfunctory. Ironically, in America from the 1860s throughout the 1940s, especially among Leftist intellectuals, inside the Academy and medical communities, American eugenicists regarded the genocidal Nazi laws as the logical evolutionary development of earlier thinking by Germany's "best specialists" and not as "the hasty improvisation of the Hitler regime."

Nazi Annexation of Austria and Czechoslovakia

18 months before Hitler's blitzkrieg would roll across Poland unleashing World War II upon the world on September 1, 1939, Hitler needed to access first how Europe would respond to two annexations the Third Reich would embark upon. Thus between March 11-13, 1938, Hitler abruptly decreed the confederation of Austria with Nazi Germany under the Anschluss (annexation). This fascist decree by Hitler was soon followed by an orgy of organized violence against Jewish persons and property proceeded in Vienna and outer suburbs of the Greater German Reich throughout 1938, reaching a crescendo in the Kristallnacht riots and violence of November 9-10.

Writer Wibke Bruhns in his noted book, My Father's Country (2004), wrote about the turbulent times in Austria during Hitler and the Nazi's brutal Anschluss (annexation):
    In March 1938 German troops enter Austria, and the country comes "home to the Reich." The jubilation in Germany and Austria is indescribable, and the populations of both countries confirm the merger with 99 percent of the votes. Else in the children's diaries: "Of course the march of the troops into Austria was a great risk, but once again it proved that Hitler has chosen the right moment. This triumphal procession through Austria was something the like of which has probably never been seen in history. A Norwegian newspaper wrote that if this was a rape of the Austrians, then 'the Austrians like being raped.'"

View of the Loos Haus, a public building in Vienna, adorned with decorations and a large banner bearing a quote from Hitler, "Those of the same blood belong in the same Reich!" Such banners were hung throughout Austria in the weeks preceding the April 10th plebiscite on the incorporation of Austria into the German Reich. – Library of Congress

Embolden by how smooth things went in the annexation of Austria, six months later Hitler would also invade the so-called "Sudetenland" or the north western province of Czechoslovakia which had a large ethnic German population Hitler skillfully exploited under Nazi propaganda that these ethnic Germans were being attacked in the Sudetenland as a pretext for Nazi invasion of Czechoslovakia. According to the Holocaust Encyclopedia after the Nazi seizure of power in 1933, under the Nazi policy of Lebensraum ("living space"), Germany pressed for the "return" to the Reich of the ethnic German population of Czechoslovakia.

In late summer 1938, Hitler threatened to unleash a European war unless the Sudetenland was ceded to Germany. Just like in modern times under the feckless leadership of America under the Obama Administration, in the late 1930s, the appeasement leaders of Britain, France, and Italy, and held a conference in Munich on September 29–30, 1938 to try to appease Hitler's Germany not to unleash world war. In what became known as the Munich Pact of September 30, 1938, Britain agreed to the German annexation of the Sudetenland in exchange for a pledge of peace from Hitler.

History repeating itself? Neville Chamberlain Pact with Hitler (1938) vs. Obama's Pact with Iran (2015)

Traitorous Treaties always follows Appeasement Politicians

President Obama's Nuclear Pact with Iran (14 July 2015) is dangerously similar to Chamberlain's Munich Pact with Nazi Germany (30 September 1938), the latter traitorous treaty by British Prime Minister Neville Chamberlain only emboldened Hitler and the Nazis to unleash World War II exactly 11 months to the day on 1 September 1939. In both geopolitical treaties it was the Jewish people who suffered the most, but they were not the only ones to suffer. We can only hope that the U.S.-Iran Nuclear Pact will not have the same catastrophic effects upon Israel and the world today as it had the Chamberlain's Munich Pact with Hitler which had the unintended effect of helping Hitler's triumphal march towards World War II.

Adolf Hitler, a master of understanding human psychology and manipulating human nature knew how to exploit human cowardice and appeasement of England and European leader's desperation to avoid world war to the supreme advantage of the Nazi Reich: "The great strength of the totalitarian state," Hitler would say "is that it forces those who fear it to imitate it."

Book Notice

Please purchase my latest opus dedicated to that Conservative Colossus, Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas. Here are the latest two new volumes from my ongoing historical series – THE PROGRESSIVE REVOLUTION: History of Liberal Fascism through the Ages (University Press of America, 2015):
However, before the book is officially released to the public, I have to place 100 pre-publication orders (50 orders per each volume). I need your help to make this happen ASAP. Please place your order today for Volume 3 & Volume 4. Of course, if you can order all 100 copies today, the book will become official tomorrow.

Please circulate this flyer to all your email contacts & Facebook/Twitter followers who may be interested in purchasing this opus which will serve as a ready apologetic against the rampant Marxist-Progressive propaganda taught in America's public schools, colleges, universities, graduate schools, and law schools. Thanks in advance to all my friends, associates and colleagues for your invaluable support! Law and History Blog: www.EllisWashingtonReport.com

Invitation for manuscripts

I am starting a new a program on my blog dedicated to giving young conservatives (ages 14-35) a regular place to display and publish their ideas called Socrates Corner. If you know of any young person who wants to publish their ideas on any subject, have them send their essay manuscripts to my email at ewashington@wnd.com.

© Ellis Washington


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Ellis Washington

Ellis Washington is a former staff editor of the Michigan Law Review (1989) and law clerk at the Rutherford Institute (1992). Currently he is an adjunct professor of law at the National Paralegal College and the graduate school, National Jurisprudence University, where he teaches Constitutional Law, Legal Ethics, American History, Administrative Law, Criminal Procedure, Contracts, Real Property, and Advanced Legal Writing, among many other subjects... (more)


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