Nazi Control Over Germany
Identify Nazi opposition: 1.) Communists 2.)Social Democrats 3.)Anti Nazi teachers and University Professors 4.)Roman Catholic Church 5.)Protestant Churches 6.)Jews and other persecuted minorities (once purges started).7.)Lander (State parliaments) 8.) trade unions
How Nazis dealt with opponents? To ensure political dominance, Nazis wanted to make Germany into a one-party state.To wipe out communists, Hitler used Reichstag fire as an excuse of a “communist uprising” to disable much of the communist activities.
It is to be noted that anti-communism was a major part of Hitler’s ideals. Social democrats were disabled as well. Lander were allowed to exist but lost all power.
Anti Nazi teachers and university professors posed the threat of spreading an anti-Nazi message. The Nazis even wanted subjects to be taught according to their principles. These people were kept in check by fear of Gestapo.
Roman Catholic church was a political threat and the church also had influence over people. In 1933, Hitler signed a concordat with Pope and said Nazis will not interfere with church affairs if church stayed out of politics. However Nazis broke concordat when it dissolved catholic youth league as it was a rival to Hitler youth. Catholic schools closed down after protestations. By 1937, church conflicting with Nazis and pope Pius XI issued Encyclical saying that Nazis were “hostile to Christ and his church”. Hitler angered and 1000’s of priests +nuns sent to conc. camps. Protestant churches were attempted to merge into Reich church. Failed and after protests, people sent to conc. Camps.
Jews sent to conc. Camps and murdered.
Trade unions banned and replaced with German labour front which reduced pay and took away right to strike
How did Nazis use culture and mass media to control people? After Nazis gained power, all forms of media were controlled by Joseph Goebbels. This made sure that no anti-Nazi ideas were publicized. Jewish works were banned as part of the anti-Semitism policies. By these methods, the way the German people thought could be adjusted to the Nazis’ will. Culture was used in the way of making Aryan people feel that they were a superior race. Cultural Activities of racial minorities were mostly banned so that they would have no effect on Aryan ideals.
Why Nazis persecuted many groups? The Nazis had an ideology of “racial purification”, whereby only the Aryans were to be in Germany. Therefore Jews and other small races were sent to conc. Camps. Jews were also persecuted because they owned many shops and businesses (once they were removed, these jobs given to Aryans). Mentally and physically disabled people were also persecuted because the Aryan race was supposed to be “perfect”. Homosexuals were persecuted as well.
Was Nazi Germany a totalitarian state? A totalitarian state is a system of govt. where there can be only one party and the people are totally devoted to the state. Nazi Germany was definitely one of these because:
1. One party state: only the national socialists allowed existing. Power taken away from Lander.
2. Civil service purged of “enemies of the state” until it was fully reliable.
3. Trade unions banned
4. Education system controlled and Nazi ideals fed into children by Hitler youth.
5. Communication and media controlled.
6. Economic control by which unemployment was reduced and Germany brought close to self sufficiency.
7. Religious control
8. People monitored by Gestapo so that if a person was anti-Nazi, he would be taken away.
9. Anti Semitism and other forms of unjustified racial discrimination.