Political Turmoil in Germany 1929 - 1932

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Political Turmoil 1929 ­ 1923
Politics in Weimar (Post Wall Street Crash)
Key Questions:
Why did parliamentary government reach crisis point and eventually collapse in Germany
between 1930-1933?
How have historians explained the post 1930 Nazi electoral breakthrough?
What myriad of factors caused Hitler's appointment as Chancellor in January 1933 and which
was the most important of these?
The Young Plan 1929
The reparations set in January 1921 by an Inter-Allied Reparations Commission at
269 billion gold marks (equivalent of 100,000 tonnes of pure gold). This is
equivalent to more than 50% of all the gold ever mined in history. Many
economists at this time including John Maynard Keynes deemed this to be
irrational and excessive.
Was written in 1929 and adopted in 1930.
The Young Plan agreed in 1929 greatly reduced German reparations to a figure 2
billion gold marks/
The `time-frame' for payment of reparations would be extended (paid over next 59
years) the amount to be paid would be reduced (cut from 2,500 million marks a
year as agreed in 1929 to 2,000 million marks a year). Germany saved 1,700
marks between 1929-1932 as a result of this plan.
However, the Young Plan was centered on the issue of reparations which was a
trigger for the Right Wing as reparations were being part as a result of Article 231,
which angered many Germans.
This is acted as propaganda for the Right Wing parties and instituted the blame for
the `November Criminals'. A number of Right Wing parties decided to oppose the
Young Plan on the basis that reparations should not be paid as the War Guilt
placed on Germany was a `lie'. This helped for the rejuvenation of the Nazi party.
Opposition to the Young Plan/'National Opposition'
The right wing opposition to the Young Plan was led by Alfred Hugenberg who was
a media tycoon, who used all his resources to spread the message against the
Weimar Government.
He had backing from much of the Right Wing fractions including the NSDAP and
This `National Opposition' did not prove successful and the Young Plan was
approved by the Reichstag in March 1930. It served to rejuvenate Right Wing
tendencies at a time when democracy was fragile.
The Right Wing had previously been fractured and divided. We know this was the
reaction for many unsuccessful Putsches (Munich Putsch and Kapp Putsch).
However this `National Opposition' to the Young Plan unified Right Wing opponents
which was a dangerous development for the NSDAP.

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It also had a positive impact on the Rise of the Nazi Party, giving Hitler the publicity
he needed and established him as a potential leader of a Unified Right.
This also enabled the Nazis to campaign on a National Level, beyond the remit of
Muller's `Grand Coalition'
Stresemann arranged a `Great Coalition' in 1923 and it consisted of the 4 main
prodemocracy parties within the Reichstag: the SPD, the Centre Part, the
DDP and the DVP (German People's Party Stresemann led this party).…read more

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Speech of German Chancellor Von Papen to the Lausanne Conference (16th June ­ 9th July
Blamed the `Welfare State' for the
economic crisis.
Brüning as Chancellor 1930 ­ 1932
Heinrich Brüning had been appointed as Chancellor by President von
Hindenburg after the collapse of Hermann Müller's coalition government/'Grand
Coalition' but did NOT have the majority of the Reichstag.
Brüning was popular with the Conservative Nationalists who believed he was a
strong leader who could offer firm relationship.…read more

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However, post1934 correspondence and memoirs frequently contradict reliable accounts of the period, and some
that Brüning's memory played him false on numerous occasions.
Views on Brüning as Chancellor 1929-1932
Few figures of the Weimar Republic's troubled last years have received more historical
attention or generated more controversy than Heinrich Brüning, who served as Germany's
chancellor during the crisis period 1930-1932.…read more


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