The German people supported Hitler more than they opposed him Essay

Submitted By James-breen
Words: 1336
Pages: 6

“The German people supported Hitler more than they opposed him”

Yes, I do think that this is true because only 1% only ever opposed Hitler throughout his time in power. However, some may argue that they only supported Hitler due to being forced. Terror and propaganda played big roles in ensuring people never resisted the Nazi regime and many historians would argue that the German people never actively support Hitler they were just afraid to speak out against the Nazi regime. On the other hand you could argue that 1934-39 is when people supported Hitler the most, due to foreign and economic policy. Terror and propaganda were never needed because the German people were witnessing good change first hand. There are many factors that play into the interpretations that we must evaluate first.

At the beginning one could argue that perhaps more people opposed the regime that supported it, the march election vote supports this. The Nazi party only receive 43.7% of the overall vote, this was down to the fact that Hitler’s main supporters were the middle class, church and industrialists. Hitler simply didn’t have enough support he needed the working class only ¼ supported him at the point. One could argue that the only reason why Hitler was never opposed is because he quickly eradicated anyone who could oppose him. Used terror and propaganda in to justify, the crushing of the trade unions. This gave Hitler a huge chunk of power over the working class. But did this gain their support? To a certain extent yes. This is because with the trade unions out the way Hitler could create jobs for all and no one to speak out against him or question him. And if they did, well it would end the same way as it did for many others. This further backs up the point that people never opposed Hitler because they were afraid, it was easier to just support him. Many historians argue that Hitler’s support was based on fear, which he used terror and propaganda to spread. The German people witnessed what would happened if you did oppose Hitler if you look at Martin Niemoller and Dietrich Bonhoffer, you see that they were imprisoned in concentration camps as soon as the spoke about Hitler. People didn’t want to go through that, why would they? You could argue that Hitler made sure that people lacked leadership so it was impossible for them to oppose Hitler. Without leadership there is no organisation. Hitler Knew if a resistance movement was to be successful organisation and leadership had to be there, so he simply took that option away from resistance groups. Hitler also made it clear the Night of the Long Knives that anyone who threatened him or the Nazi regime would know what to expect.

On the other hand between 1934-39, Nazi support has undoubtedly increased and much more people supported Hitler rather than oppose him. One could argue that this was down to the fact Hitler was so successful in the early years that there was no reason to resist. An historian by the name of Jeremy Noakes stated in his booked Nazism that during the 1930’s Hitler was seen as savour the German people loved him. This supports the view that Hitler wasn’t supported because he was feared it was because he was a passionate and good leader that rescued Germany from a crises. Economic and foreign policy were vital in gaining support at this time and that’s what rallied the people’s support. However, there were still people who didn’t agree with everything Hitler was doing a man called Count Clemens August von Galon he spoke out about the Nazi euthanasia programme. This took a lot of guts because this individual of the Catholic Church must have known what he was getting into he has witnessed what Hitler is capable of. The was a very powerful man who could influence the opinions of many with the full back up of people who follow the Catholic Church. This does also support that the church was selfish and that they only spoke out when I concerned them, where were they when the Jews