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The Reichstag Fire had given Hitler the opportunity to damage the reputation of the
Communists and to heighten the reputation of the Nazis.
The election of March 1933 and the decision of the Nationalist Party to join with the
Nazis had given Hitler control of the Reichstag.
OPPORTUNISM Hitler wasted no time. On 23rd March he introduced an
ENABLING ACT which would allow him to have complete power in Germany. However,
this law needed to be approved by the whole Reichstag.
INTIMIDATION Great pressure was put on the other parties in the Reichstag by
the Nazis. A. By using the Law for the Protection of the People and State, Hitler
banned the Communists from taking their seats. B. Members of the Social Democrats
were beaten up by the SA, and many were too scared to turn up to the voting.
The result of these tactics was that the Enabling Law was passed.
The Enabling Law gave Hitler the power to pass any laws without consulting the
Reichstag, and without the approval of President Hindenburg.
After March 1933 the Reichstag only really met to hear speeches by Hitler. The
authority of all other political parties had been swept away.
In the next elections, the Nazis were the only party allowed to stand.
The removal of other political parties became formal in July 1933 when Hitler
introduced the Law Against the Formation of New Parties.
This law stated that the Nazi Party was the only party allowed to exist in Germany.
It laid down severe punishment for anyone who tried to set up another party.
Germany was now a one-party state (a dictatorship).
Trade unions were also abolished and their offices destroyed. Workers, or
companies no longer had a political voice against the Nazis.
Leaders of political parties and trade unions were arrested and moved to labour
Hitler made sure that all posts in government were held by Nazi supporters.
Nazi officials were put in charge of the local governments which ran the states of
Hitler made sure that all civil servants and judges were Nazi supporters. Anyone who
wasn't was removed from office.
Hitler soon had complete control of Germany and its political, administrative and
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Once Hitler had control of Germany he didn't need the SA anymore. He was also worried
that they might be a threat to his leadership.
The SA leader Ernst Roehm wanted the SA to have total control of the German army.
This would make him more powerful than Hitler.
Hitler decided that Roehm must be stopped, or the Nazis ran the risk of losing the
support of the army.
On 30th June 1934 the Night of the Long Knives took place.…read more
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January 1933 Hitler is appointed Chancellor Only 3 out of 12 cabinet members are Nazis.
1 February 1933 Hindenburg agrees to dissolve This gave Hitler the opportunity to gain the majority
the Reichstag and hold new he needed to change the Weimar Constitution
17 February 1933 Goering gains control over the He insisted that they serve Nazi interests, and
police brought in an extra 50,000 men, mainly SA
members. They were used to intimidate and
terrorise Nazi opponents.…read more
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New Ministry for Public Enlightenment Concordat between the state and the Catholic Church
and Propaganda created
Reichstag Fire Day of Potsdam
Reichstag Election Night of the Long Knives…read more