Early measures to help peasants
- Sept. 1933: The Reich food estate set up by Darre: Regulates agriculture, control prices and wages and sets production quotas.
- As a result, farmers overall income increased by 41% between 1933 - 36
- Reich entailed farm law: protect smaller farms. farms of around 30 acres were 'hereditary' and could not be divided on the death of the farmer, instead, it was passed to the eldest son
- Introduction of protective tariffs on imports
- reduction on mortgage payments to encourage farmers to stay on the land.
- Generous grants for improvements
Economic objectives always took priority over ideology like 'blood and soil'
Hopes of farmers and peasants were largely not met.
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Criticisms of Nazi policy toward peasants
- Enforced petty rules resented by farmers
- Controls on sale of produce imposed on choice of crops
- Entailed farm law applied to only 20% of total farms
- Money allocated to clear debts (650,000 RM) mainly went to larger farms
- Agricultural wages never kept up with industrial workers
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Conformity and resistance by 1939: Evidence for
- Absence of widespread or serious opposition
- A series of plebiscites in the 1930's saw the Nazis obtain 90% of total support
Reasons why there was conformity and support:
- Popularity of some policies
- the effectiveness of propaganda
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Non conformity and resistance by 1939
- There was a fair amount of civil disobedience. (refusal to give the Nazi salute, anti Nazi jokes, refusal to hang flags from homes etc.) in the 1930's
- SOPADE and SD reports indicate people did not wholeheartedly support the regime.
- Lack of opposition WAS NOT evidence of consent: there was an extensive apparatus of terror that made people fear speaking out.
- Plot to remove Hitler by General Beck in 1938
- Assassination attempt by George Elser in 1939
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