‘How successful was opposition to Hitler between 1933 and 1945? Explain your answer’

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`How successful was opposition to Hitler between 1933 and
1945? Explain your answer'
Opposition to Hitler was not successful as no individual group managed to gain enough power to
overthrow Hitler although many groups were set up to try and overthrow him. People who spoke
out against Hitler and his policies faced intimidation and threats, or in some cases execution.
However, there were brave individuals and groups who openly opposed Hitler and his policies - a
few survived, but many were killed.
Many youth movements were set up in opposition to the Nazis; the swing movement, the Edelweiss
Pirates, the Navaho Gang and the White Rose Group. The Swing Movement were middle class youths
who wanted to be able to dance and listen to swing music, they rebelled against what typical Nazi
men and women should've looked like and accepted Jews, they did not directly or openly oppose
the Nazi's although many of them were harshly punished so they did not successfully oppose the
Nazi's due to their strict rules. The Edelweiss Pirates had wishes to be able to express their thoughts
and feelings without being persecuted by the Nazis for doing so. They openly opposed the Nazis by
going on hikes, camping, singing and attacked Hitler Youth patrols, but a group of 12 Edelweiss
Pirates were hung after the assassination of the head of the Köln gestapo. The Navaho Gang were a
branch of the Edelweiss Pirates who directly opposed the Nazi Party by sheltering army deserters
and camp escapees; they attacked military targets and also Nazi officials. The White Rose Group was
a group led by Munich students who wanted to stop the cruel slaughter of Jews and Poles. They
distributed leaflets against this during the war but most leaders were captured and executed in
After the economic depression, owners of businesses were very wary of what might happen so
workers (especially unskilled workers) did not have much option but to support the Nazis so they
could follow a government work scheme to have enough money to feed their children and families.
They considered themselves lucky to have a job. The workers did not oppose the Nazis much
because they banned trade unions meaning that the workers did not have a voice and could not
complain. The workers were also scared of the Gestapo so they did what they said.
Hitler took control of other political parties by banning them as soon as he came into power; this
meant that the Nazi party was the only legal political party. Although, this did not stop the Socialists
and the Communists forming underground resistance groups which tried to spread resistance among
factory workers. This opposition was a lot more common than many people realised and the Nazis
were not so good at dealing with it because they were not so aware of it. Many people preferred to
get involved in underground opposition movements rather than oppose the Nazis publicly as critics of
the government could be arrested, tortured, and sometimes executed. The number of people who
protested openly against the government was very small.
The church played an important part in the lives of German people before Hitler came to power, so
the Nazis knew that they could use the church as a way to get through to the public. They united
churches into one Reich Church under a pro-Nazi bishop and these people became known as the
German Christians. Although this worked well for Nazi supporters, there were many opponents
within the Church as they disliked German Christians and Nazis so they formed an alternative
Confessional Church led by Martin Niemöller. Some Catholics publically attacked Nazi policies as early
as 1934 by revealing that they were secretly killing the mentally and physically handicapped.

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Opposition from the Church was quite often overlooked by the Nazis as the majority of 3 million Nazi
Party members' still paid church taxes and registered as Christians so the Nazis were forced to bow
to the public pressure. Although, priests were stopped from teaching religious classes in schools and
in 1939 all of the remaining church schools were abolished.
The army began to turn against Hitler in 1943 when the war was going wrong.…read more


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