When the topic of dictators is brought up who comes to mind? Most anyone will say Adolf Hitler. Why was he so cruel? What drove his hatred for the Jews? Why did he want a so-called “perfect” race? Well the answer to all these questions might be answered from Hitler’s childhood. Adolph Hitler was born on April 20, 1889, in Braunau am Inn, Austria. He was the son of Alois, a customs official, and Klara Hitler. Alois was a very mean and stern father. His death, in 1903, came as a
relief to Adolf. His relationship with his mother was totally opposite than his relationship with his father, Adolf idealized his mother so when she died in 1907 it was a very traumatic experience to him. This led to many problems, especially school.
While living in Vienna, Hitler made his living by drawing small pictures of famous landmarks, which he sold as post cards. But he was always poor. He was also a regular reader of a small paper, which claimed that the Arabian race was superior to all and was destined to rule the world. The paper blamed Communists and Jews for all their problems and Hitler agreed to those views. Hitler agreed with most of the points made in the publication. He continued to live a poor life in Vienna and in 1913 decided to move to Munich. Still living in Vienna and being Austrian by birth, Hitler showed more loyalty to the country of Germany. He thought that the Aryan race was destined to rule the world. Many believe that he tried to escape the draft but it was never proven. His life in Munich was not much better then before and he continued to be poor. Then in 1914 World War I broke out and Hitler saw this as a great opportunity to show his loyalty to the “fatherland” by volunteering for the Imperial army. He did not want to fight in the Austrian Army. Hitler was a good soldier. Many of his political opponents claimed that he was a coward but records clearly show that he was not. He received two awards of bravery but never achieved a high rank.
In 1918 Germany surrendered and Hitler was very upset about the loss. He believed that it was the Jews and the Communists who betrayed the “fatherland” and it was here that his disliking of the Jews most likely began. Germany, after the war, was in chaos. With no real Government to control the country, mangroups tried to take control. One day a big communist group staged a big riot but another group of ex-soldiers, including Hitler, managed to hold them back. Hitler’s political rise starts to take off in the year of 1919.
Since there were not many chances for employment Hitler stayed in the army. Hitler was assigned the job of going to various meetings of groups, which came up frequently, and to report on them. One day on September 12, 1919 – a fateful day in history, Hitler was sent to investigate a small group, which called itself the “German Workers Party”. Hitler was not too happy about his assignment. He thought it wouldn’t be worth it to even go. At the group they mainly talked about the Countries problem and how the Jews, communists, and others where threatening the master race and offered their own solutions. Hitler was bored by the meeting but when a man stood up and claimed that Bavaria should separate from Germany, Hitler got up and argued that point. He argued that Germany and Germans must unite into one to survive. His natural ability to speak impressed the leader of the group and at the end of the meeting he gave Hitler a pamphlet and an initiation the next meeting. He wasn’t interested in attending but after reading the hand out he accepted. He later joined the German Workers Party and was in charge of propaganda. The party was small at first but Hitler’s great skill at deliberating speeches attracted more and more listeners and it soon became a major party with many followers. Eventually Adolf Hitler became its leader and the rest as they say is history, as the Nazi Party had come to the forefront of Germany.
While spending time in prison for trying to overthrow the government Adolf Hitler wrote his famous book “Mein Kampf”, in which he describes many problems and where he states that the Jews and communists were responsible for those problems. He also decided on the “Final Solution” to the “Jewish Question”. It was his goal to eliminate the Jewish race from the European continent. It is interesting to look and see how a small time boy from Austria with no education, money or political background could become within a few years the leader of a big nation such as Germany. Historians believe that Hitler saw a great opportunity to get his views across to the German people who had lost all hope. Of course people did not start to support him right away. After he came into power, the Nazi party took control over every aspect of every day life. Hitler ordered the creation of a special police force to make sure that all opponents would be eliminated, the Gestapo. He also gave orders to set up a special force, which would be used to transport and take care of all political prisoners, and people who were thought to be inferior. The name of the force was the feared SS. Mass propaganda was used to persuade the German people that the “Fuhrer” would make the country strong and powerful again. They also used propaganda against the Jews and other minority groups that were considered enemies. Teachers had to belong to the Nazi party, and children were taught that Jews were the very the source of all their problems. Since the country was in chaos after the war, and was forced to pay billions in damages, the Germans saw hope in Adolf Hitler. In the late 20’s the depression hit which made the situation even worse. Hitler, in his speeches, blamed the Jews and Communists for their misfortunes and many listed problems. Unemployment was very high at that time, standing at about 25%. Hitler also spoke out against the unfairness of the Versailles treaty. Germany lost a lot of its territory. The Empire was no more. He believed the pure Arabian race is destined to rule the world and wanted to build an Empire that would last a 1000 years. He preached that all Germans must unite in order for this goal to succeed. Hitler publicly stated his views on the Jews. But the Jews of Germany didn’t see Hitler as a great threat at first. However when Hitler became chancellor and eventually took over totally they changed their mind. The first thing he did was to take the Jews right to vote away. Soon they were not allowed to marry with a pure German, they could not hold positions such as teachers, doctors, lawyers and so on. Many Jews only then realized that he was serious and many fled Germany. Why did so many Germans follow Hitler? When he took power the economy was basically non-existent. Many looked for answers and hope. Hitler was their answer. He promised to rebuild the Glorious Germany of the past. Germany was not allowed to have more than 100, 000 men, but Hitler broke the treaty and gave orders to increase that number. Factories started putting out weapons and people now had jobs. To the Germans this was a very good sign. Mass rallies were held, where Hitler continued to use his powers of speech on the German people.
At first the allies did nothing about the fact that Hitler broke the Treaty. He gave speeches in which he indicated that the German people needed living space. Later he marched into the Reihnland, an area that Germany lost. Next he moved into Austria, his home country and annexed it without a shoot being fired into the Reich. Following Austria, he wanted control of the Sudetenland, a part of Czechoslovakia that was mainly German speaking. He also achieved that goal. The allies didn’t want another war so they let Hitler do what he wanted to, but when he attacked Poland on September 1st, 1939 the allies no longer stood by and watched. Britain and France declared war on Germany a few days after later, World War II began.
After the Wehrmacht conquered and occupied a territory the SS quickly followed. They would round up Jews, communists, Gypsies, homosexuals and others which were viewed as “inferior” according to Nazi racial theory and enemies of the German people and put them on trains. They were all sent to Concentration camps, which were set up to implement the ‘final solution’. Camps such as Auschwitz, Treblinka, Bergen-Belsen were all equipped with gas chambers to make the killing process quick and effective. In those camps 6 million Jews and many others were killed by the Nazis. Hitler’s army seemed unstoppable but in the end, the allies managed to win many decisive battles. Eventually on Aril 30th, 1945 Hitler committed suicide in his bunker by shooting himself in the mouth. His body was burned, but no one knows what happened to the “Fuhrer’s” ashes. On May 7th, 1945 Germany surrendered unconditionally.
Hitler was one of the most, if not the most cruel man to ever walk the face of the earth. His belief of the superiorority of the “Aryan” race made him hate all others. He believed that the slaws to the east should be made work for the German people. He thought of blacks as being “Sub-human”. And Most of all he hated the Jews. So much that in early 1945, when equipment and manpower was badly needed on the front Hitler insisted on man and equipment staying and continuing to transport Jews to the camps. In his Testament he left his money to his family. And message to the Germany people “Above all I charge the leaders of the nation and those under them to scrupulous observance of the laws of race and to merciless opposition to the universal poisoner of all peoples, international Jewry.” The only people which would be spared were the Scandinavians to the north, since they were closely related to the German race. With Hitler’s death the Nazi party quickly faded. But there is still a lot of tension in Germany today. Hitler left his mark on the country and entire world. One can only imagine how the world would be today had Hitler won in World War II. Now that can only be imagined as opposed to being a reality. Hitler’s cruelty and hatred for humankind in general, besides Germans, is mind blowing. His attitude and hatred might be traced back to his childhood or early adulthood but whatever the reasoning for Hitler’s cruelty and hatred maybe, there is no excuse for his actions. In the end Germany’s biggest enemy turned out to be Adolf Hitler himself. Since his death no one else on this earth has had the same views and beliefs as Hitler, surely no one has taken the same action he has and hopefully we will never see a Hitler type leader again on this planet.