Nazi Control and Dictatorship 1933-1939


The Reichstag fire.

Events: On 27th February 1933 the Reichstag building was destroyed by a massive fire. A communist suppporter named Lubbe was was caught with matches and firelighters and confessed when put on trial. Hitler saw this as an opportunity to attack the communists and arrested 4000 on that night.

Consequences: Hitller used the Reichstag fire to declare a state of emergy, meaning he could use his emergency decrees. HItler also persuaded Hindenburg to calll another election on March 5th 1933. He also issued the decree for the protection of people and state meaning he could imprison his opponents and ban the communist newspaper. He also appointed Goering as cheif of police, meaning he controlled the force and ignored the activities of the SA. The election led to 70 deaths. Hitler now had 288 seats in the Reichstag and banned the communists taking up their 81 seats, this meant he now had a 2/3s majority.

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The Enabling Act

Causes: Due to the Reichstag fire and the banning of the communists, the Nazis had a 2/3s majority. Hindenburg was also more accepting of Hitler as he had been following the rules set in place and they both had a common enemy, the communists.

Events: In March 1933 Hitler forced through the enabling act which gave Hitler the right to pass laws without going through the Reichstag for the next four years. This law was passed by 444 votes to 94, however Reichstag members were intimidated by the SA.  It also banned trade unions, removed Jews from civil service and set up the minitry of propoganda, run by Goebbels

Consequences:  This marked the end of democracy as Hitler was now a compleate dictator and the Nazi party was the only legal party. It also ensured that newspapers, films and radio could only produce what was approved by Hitler.

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The Night of the Long Knives.

Causes: Hitler was worried about the rise in power of Rohm as the SA numbered now numbered 3 million, Hitler was also concerend about their loyalty. Rohm had opposed some of Hitler's policies as he wanted the party to become more socialist and he wanted the SA to replace the army as there was only 100 000 men. In 1934, leaders of the ** warnerd Hitler that Rohm was trying to seize power.

Events: On 30th June 1934 Hitler, arranged for Rohm and several other members of the SA to be shot. On the 31st Rohm was locked in a cell and given a pistol to commit suicide. He did not and so he was shot. As well as this 400 SA members were shot,one of them being General von Schleider.

Consequences: From that time on the ** became a feared force in Nazi Germany. This reflected welll on Himmler who continued to gain power within Nazi Germany.

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Death of President Hindenburg

On the 2nd August 1934 President Hindenburg died and Hitler moved in to compleate, supreme power.

Consequences: Hitler declared himself Fuhrer and took on all the president's powers. He forced an oath of loyalty to him from every soldier in the army. Another vote was aranged and 90% of votes supported Hitler.

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