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Tema: Biography of Adolf Hitler  (Pročitano 10783 puta)
13. Jul 2007, 09:18:34
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Adolf Hitler (1889-1945), German political and military leader and one of the 20th century's most powerful dictators. Hitler converted Germany into a fully militarized society and launched World War II in 1939 (see Federal Republic of Germany). He made anti-Semitism a keystone of his propaganda and policies and built the Nazi Party (see National Socialism) into a mass movement. He hoped to conquer the entire world, and for a time dominated most of Europe and much of North Africa. He instituted sterilization and euthanasia measures to enforce his idea of racial purity among German people and caused the slaughter of millions of
Jews, Roma (Gypsies), Slavic peoples, and many others, all of whom he considered inferior.

Adolf Hitler was born in Braunau am Inn, Austria-Hungary, in 1889, the fourth child of Klara and Alois Hitler. Hitler’s father worked his way up in the Austrian customs service to a position of considerable status, and as a result Hitler had a comfortable childhood. His grades at school were above average. It was decided that he would attend a Realschule, a secondary school that prepared students for further study and emphasized modern languages and technical subjects. However, Hitler and his father strongly differed over career plans. His father wanted him to enter the civil service; Hitler insisted on becoming an artist. As a result, Hitler did poorly in Realschule, having to repeat the first year and improving little thereafter.

During this time, Hitler began to form his political views: a strong sense of German nationalism, the beginnings of anti-Semitism, and a distaste for the ruling family and political structure of Austria-Hungary. Like many German-speaking citizens of Austria-Hungary, Hitler considered himself first and foremost a German.
The death of Hitler’s father in January 1903 changed everything. The family income was adequate to support Hitler, his mother, and his sister, but the absence of a dominant father figure altered Hitler's position in the family. He spent much of his time playing and dreaming, did poorly in his studies, and left school in 1905.

Hitler had hoped to become an artist but was rejected as unqualified by the Vienna Academy of Fine Arts in October 1907. His mother died in 1908, and Hitler pretended to continue his studies in Vienna in order to receive an orphan’s pension. In reality, he mostly wandered about the city admiring its public buildings and frequently attending operas, especially those of Richard Wagner, whom Hitler adored for his heroic portrayals of German mythology.

When he had exhausted his inherited funds, Hitler, unwilling to take a job, ended up in a homeless shelter. It was there that he was first exposed to extreme political ideas, particularly the racial concepts of Lanz von Liebenfels. Liebenfels published a periodical about the supposed superiority of Aryans, an ill-defined race that included Germans, and the inferiority of other races, especially Jews. At the same time Hitler acquired a hatred for socialism and came to equate it with the Jews.

Between 1910 and 1913 Hitler’s life improved when he began to paint and sell postcards and pictures for a living, copying famous paintings and drawing public buildings. He debated ideas with others in the hostel in which he lived, developing the beginnings of his public speaking style. Failure to register for conscription in Austria led him to flee for Munich, Germany, in 1913 to escape the Austrian authorities. He was extradited to Austria but was found physically unfit to serve in the military. He then returned to Munich.

The outbreak of World War I in 1914 came as an opportunity for Hitler, as his money was running out. He volunteered for a Bavarian unit in the German army and served the whole war. Though repeatedly decorated for bravery, he was never promoted beyond private first class. In a war of very high casualties, this is difficult to explain. Perhaps officers considered him a loner who could carry messages and perform other dangerous duties but who was unsuited to commanding men.

Hitler saw trench warfare as a form of the struggle for survival among races, a struggle that he was coming to see as the essence of existence. At the same time, his anti-Semitic feelings were growing extreme. When Germany was defeated in 1918, Hitler was lying in a military hospital, temporarily blinded by mustard gas. He decided Jews had caused Germany’s defeat and that he would enter politics to save the country.

Hitler returned to Munich after the war. He was selected to be a political speaker by the local army headquarters, given special training, and provided with opportunities to practise his public speaking before returning prisoners of war. His speaking successes led to his selection as an observer of political groups in the Munich area. In this capacity, he investigated the German Workers' Party—one of the many nationalist, racist groups that developed in Munich in the post-war years.

The German Workers' Party, later renamed the National Socialist German Workers’ Party (abbreviated to NSDAP or Nazi Party), became Hitler’s political focus. Here he found an outlet for his talents in political agitation and party organization. The party espoused essentially the same ideas Hitler had picked up in Vienna: violent racial nationalism and anti-Semitism. He also shared the Nazis’ opposition to the liberal democracy of the German Weimar Republic, which had been established after the war.

Though still in the army, Hitler quickly became the new spokesman for the party. His talent for public speaking and the use of the local army's resources to generate publicity drew large audiences to events sponsored by an organization that had only 100 to 200 members. When he presented the party's official programme to a gathering on February 24, 1920, there were almost 2,000 present.

Hitler was discharged from the army the following month, and he soon attained dominance in the Nazi Party. He was the party’s most effective recruiter and, thanks to paid attendance at his speeches, its most successful fundraiser. When opposed within the party, he found ways to push out rivals and dissenters. Several times he did so by threatening to leave the party himself. Hitler obtained enough support to have himself chosen as Führer (absolute leader) of the party on July 29, 1921.

Hitler appealed to a wide variety of people by combining an effective and carefully rehearsed speaking style with what looked like absolute sincerity and determination. He found a large audience for his programme of national revival, racial pride in Germanic values, hatred for France and of Jews and other non-German races, and disdain for the Weimar Republic. Hitler asserted only a dictatorship could rescue Germany from the depths to which it had fallen. His views changed only minimally

At the end of World War I, the Allies had demanded that Germany pay reparations—that is, payments for war damages. The government refused to pay all that was demanded by the Allies. When Germany failed to pay enough, France and Belgium occupied the coal mines in the Ruhr industrial area in west-central Germany in January 1923.

In protest, the German government halted all reparation payments and called for passive resistance by all the workers in the Ruhr area. This resistance took the form of a general strike, with labourers throughout the Ruhr refusing to work. To pay the striking workers, and to make up for money lost due to the stoppage of coal production, the government printed huge amounts of new money. This vast increase in the money supply triggered runaway inflation, as the German currency rapidly lost value. People saw their savings become worthless, while the price of goods skyrocketed.

Faced with massive inflation and growing civic unrest, the German government abandoned passive resistance and attempted to work out a new agreement with the Allies. At this point, Hitler decided the time was right to start a revolution. His followers were becoming restless, and he feared that the opportunity to launch a coup might pass if the government worked out an agreement and ended inflation.

On November 8, 1923, Hitler and 600 armed members of the Sturmabteilung (or SA, a Nazi paramilitary force) made their move. They marched on a Munich beer hall where Gustav von Kahr, head of the provincial Bavarian government, was addressing a public meeting. Hitler took von Kahr and his associates hostage and declared in von Kahr's name the formation of a new national government. Von Kahr was then released, and he immediately retracted the statement, outlawed the Nazi Party, and ordered the Bavarian police to crush Hitler’s revolution.

Undaunted, Hitler and his men led a march to the centre of Munich the following day. State police halted the march, shooting started, and 16 of Hitler's followers were killed. Lacking mass support, Hitler had no chance against the police and military power of the Bavarian government. The so-called Beer Hall Putsch (revolt) had failed. Hitler fled but was soon arrested and tried. In court he practically took over the proceedings, denouncing both the Weimar Republic and the Bavarian government. Hitler was sentenced to five years in prison for treason, but was released after less than one year.

Even though the putsch failed, it proved useful to Hitler. He received a great deal of publicity and learned an important lesson about the way to destroy democracy. It was not to be destroyed by outside force, but by working within its system to build up popular support, always avoiding a confrontation with its police and military power.

While in prison, Hitler dictated the first volume of Mein Kampf (“My Struggle”, translated 1939); after his release he continued with a second volume. This work contained many of his basic ideas. Hitler believed that history was the record of struggles among races. He held that the superior Aryan race, centred in Germany, would be the final victor and would rule the world. But to win this struggle, Germany would have to be ruled by a dictator and would have to be racially aware. Racial awareness would come through a process of mobilizing the masses with propaganda that appealed to their feelings, not their reason, and aroused their hatred for all other allegedly inferior races, especially Jews. No class or other distinctions in German society mattered.

Another of Hitler’s major ideas was the concept of Lebensraum (living space). He denounced as hopelessly stupid those German political parties and movements that wanted to reverse the 1919 Treaty of Versailles and reclaim what Germany had then lost. Instead, Hitler argued that Germany needed large amounts of territory in which to expand, a need that he would meet by conquering territory and expelling or killing the local populations. Such measures naturally required wars, but not for political or economic objectives. Hitler’s wars would be fought to win vast stretches of land on which German settlers would raise large families. Eventually more land would be needed, but the population would have grown sufficiently to provide the soldiers needed to replace the losses caused by war and to conquer more land. What would happen when the German settlers met on the other side of the globe was not explained.

During his time in jail, Hitler had turned over direction of the party to Alfred Rosenberg. Rosenberg edited the party's newspaper, the Völkischer Beobachter (Popular Observer), but had no administrative ability. As a result, Hitler easily resumed complete control of the party upon his release in December 1924. In the years from 1925 to 1930, he built up a network of local party organizations over most of Germany, and reorganized the SA. At the same time he organized the black-shirted Schutzstaffel (defence corps), or SS, to protect him, supervise and control the party, and perform police tasks.

In this process of extending National Socialist power, Hitler was assisted by several men who had worked with him before 1923. Hermann Göring was a World War I fighter pilot who saw to the reorganization of the SA and was Hitler's closest confidante. Rudolf Hess, also a former pilot, became Hitler's secretary and played a major role in party organization. Joseph Goebbels was an aspiring author who came to worship Hitler and developed the Nazi propaganda techniques that swayed more Germans to join in that worship. Ernst Röhm was an army officer whose involvement increased army support and who built up the SA; he was killed on Hitler's orders in 1934 when Hitler felt that Röhm was becoming a threat to his plans. Heinrich Himmler, who had studied agriculture, began his work in the party in a secretarial capacity but moved into the SS, which he later headed. Max Amann had been Hitler's immediate superior in World War I and was placed in charge of the party's newspaper and publishing firm, which he turned into profitable businesses.

In 1928 Hitler began his attempt to build the power of the party by democratic means. In the 1928 election the Nazi Party received just under 3 per cent of the vote, but during the campaign it had gathered a strong base. In 1929 a new settlement of the war reparations question, the Young Plan, was adopted, opening up the possibility of an early end to the remaining foreign occupation of a portion of Germany. Such an event might stabilize the republic, and in fear of this, the republic’s opponents organized a national initiative against the plan. This initiative, which was financed by the German nationalist Alfred Hugenberg, provided Hitler with opportunities to speak throughout Germany. The initiative to stop the Young Plan failed, but Hitler had recruited new followers who not only believed his message but were also willing to finance the Nazi Party.

In late 1929 the first effects of the worldwide economic depression (see Great Depression) were felt in Germany. The last government of the Weimar Republic based on a majority in the Reichstag (the German parliament) was not able to cope with the crisis and fell in March 1930. President Paul von Hindenburg appointed a new government led by Heinrich Brüning as chancellor. However, Brüning and the Reichstag could not agree on how to resolve the crisis. Hindenburg dissolved the legislature and operated the government by emergency decree, rather than through the normal legislative procedure. In new elections held that September, the Nazis scored a great electoral breakthrough, increasing their representation in the Reichstag from 12 to 107.

The victory of the Nazi Party, which had campaigned vigorously for the repudiation of all of Germany's financial obligations, caused foreign investors to withdraw their money from Germany, and the German banking system collapsed due to lack of capital. As economic conditions worsened, the appeal of the Nazis was far more effective than that of other parties: the Nazis were the one group that claimed to have all the answers. In a short time, the other political parties lost voters to the Nazis. Unemployment rose dramatically, and in this time of great economic hardship many who had never voted before were drawn to the Nazi Party, which offered simplistic but appealing solutions to the country’s problems and was not tied to one class or interest group. Consequently, many believed the party could establish a government that would be more effective than the republic. In elections held in 1932, the Nazis received more votes than any other party, and Hitler demanded that President Hindenburg appoint him chancellor.

Though Hindenburg at first refused, a small group of men around the president urged him to do so. They felt that Hitler could be controlled and his popularity and talents could be used to further the interests of the government. As the year progressed, Brüning's successor Franz von Papen grew unpopular as his attempts to revive the economy failed. Hindenburg replaced him with the political leader of the army, Kurt von Schleicher. Von Papen took revenge on Schleicher by joining forces with Hitler and Alfred Hugenberg. They talked the elderly Hindenburg into making Hitler chancellor of a Cabinet in which von Papen would be vice-chancellor and most other ministers would be non-Nazis. On January 30, 1933, Hitler was sworn in as chancellor of Germany. Those who disliked the republic had persuaded the president to turn over authority to its sworn enemy.

Immediately upon becoming chancellor, Hitler moved to consolidate his power. He persuaded Hindenburg to issue a decree suspending all civil liberties in Germany. A subservient legislature passed the Enabling Act, which permitted Hitler's government to make laws without legislative approval. The act effectively made the legislature powerless. Hitler then installed loyal Nazis in important posts in the bureaucracy, the judiciary, and the German provincial governments. He replaced all labour unions with the Nazi-controlled German Labour Front and banned all political parties except his own. The economy, the media, and all cultural activities were brought under Nazi authority. An individual's livelihood was made dependent upon his or her political loyalty. Thousands of anti-Nazis were taken to concentration camps—the existence of which was widely publicized—and all signs of dissent were suppressed. A massive propaganda campaign celebrated the end of democracy in Germany, and huge, staged demonstrations gave the impression that everyone supported Hitler.

Existing social, economic, and professional organizations were quickly taken over by individuals either already in the party or who would quickly join it. For the most part, leaders of Germany’s Protestant and Catholic churches rallied to the new government. Schools taught Nazi ideology. Soon the spare time of the young was absorbed by the Nazi Party as well—boys were drawn into the Hitler Youth, and girls became members of the Nazi-led League of German Girls. The goal was to indoctrinate people into the party starting at a young age. By the summer of 1933, the Nazi Party was in complete control of the country.

In 1933 Hitler initiated polices to rid the Aryan race of undesirable elements and eliminate other races that he considered inferior and dangerous to the Germans. First, the government approved marriage loans to the “right kind” of Germans—those whose ancestors and appearance measured up to the Nazi’s standard of Aryan purity. These loans were repaid as the newlyweds produced babies. To discourage the propagation of the “wrong kind” of people, a law required the compulsory sterilization of men and women deemed likely to have defective children, primarily those with physical or mental handicaps. By 1945 some 400,000 Germans had been sterilized.

The first discriminatory laws against Jews also came in 1933. These laws barred Jews from government employment and restricted their admission to universities. In subsequent years, the anti-Semitic laws became increasingly harsh, as Jews were deprived of citizenship, excluded from more and more jobs, forbidden to own cars, thrown out of public schools, and stripped of their property. These events culminated in Kristallnacht (the “Night of Broken Glass”), the night of November 9, 1938, when Nazi mobs killed dozens of Jews, smashed thousands of windows in Jewish neighbourhoods, and set fire to almost all Jewish houses of worship throughout Germany. Following Kristallnacht, the Nazis sent more than 30,000 Jews to concentration camps. Hundreds of thousands of others fled the country.

Despite Hitler’s drive for German self-sufficiency he knew that Nazi forces alone could not overcome the major European powers—at least not at first—and he began to seek allies. Hitler had long hoped to win the support of Italy in any coming war. He admired Italian dictator Benito Mussolini, whose nationalistic and militaristic policies mirrored his own. This admiration was reciprocated, and in 1936, Hitler and Mussolini established the Rome-Berlin Axis. Hitler then turned to Japan as a possible ally against Britain and France. In 1940 the Rome-Berlin Axis was extended to include Japan and became the Rome-Berlin-Tokyo Axis.

One of Hitler’s primary goals had always been to unite all German-speaking peoples in Europe. To this end, Hitler strongly pursued Anschluss (union) between Germany and Austria. The latter country was the primarily German-speaking remnant of the old empire of Austria-Hungary, which had been dissolved after World War I. The union of Germany and Austria had been forbidden by the treaty that ended World War I, a restriction deeply resented in both countries. Hitler, himself an ethnic German of Austrian birth, had always expected to incorporate Austria into his German empire—an empire he named the Third Reich. Union with Austria would increase Germany’s population, strengthen its army, and open an avenue to south-eastern Europe.

Efforts to accomplish Anschluss by external pressure and an internal coup failed in 1933 and 1934. These heavy-handed tactics considerably dampened Austrian enthusiasm for union with Germany. By 1937 Hitler was openly threatening the Austrian government and massing troops along the Austrian border. In March 1938 the Austrian chancellor resigned and was replaced by a member of the Austrian Nazi Party. On March 12, Hitler ordered his army to march into Austria. It met no resistance, and the following day in Vienna, Hitler proclaimed the official union of Austria and Germany.

In early May 1938 Hitler decided to begin the first of his wars, that against Czechoslovakia. Hitler planned to crush Czechoslovakia, use its sizeable ethnic German population to enlarge his army, and expel or kill its non-German inhabitants. To build support for this plan, the Nazis organized a massive propaganda campaign in Germany, which portrayed ethnic Germans in Czechoslovakia as victims of repression and discrimination at the hands of the Czechs. This campaign was unsuccessful—too many Germans remembered the horrors of the last war, and too few hated the Czechs. In addition to this lack of domestic support, there was unexpected foreign pressure against an invasion. Mussolini urged Hitler to negotiate, and Britain took a firm stand in support of Czechoslovakia.

Hitler called off the invasion in favour of negotiations, which ended in the Munich Pact. By the terms of this agreement, Czechoslovakia ceded to Germany portions of its land that were inhabited by ethnic Germans—primarily the area in western Czechoslovakia known as the Sudetenland. Hitler accepted this agreement against his better judgement; he really wanted a war that would destroy Czechoslovakia. For the rest of his life, he considered this his worst mistake, and he was determined never to be cheated of war again.

In the winter of 1938 and 1939 Hitler believed the time had come for war with France and Britain. Those countries hoped war could be avoided; the experience of World War I had convinced them that even a victorious war would not be worth the cost. As a result, leaders in London and Paris had worked hard to settle whatever international issues might arise and to escape war if at all possible. The idea that anyone might actually want war was inconceivable to them. The signs that Germany was looking for further expansion even after Munich, however, led the British and French governments to decide in early 1939 that if Germany took action against any other country and that country resisted, they would go to war. Germany’s breaking of the Munich Pact by occupying most of the rest of Czechoslovakia in March 1939 pushed the bulk of the British and French peoples behind this agreement.

Before attacking in the west, Hitler needed to secure two things: a quiet front on Germany's eastern border and allies against Britain and France. The first of these meant subordinating Hungary, Lithuania, and Poland to Germany. A change of government in Hungary favoured Hitler’s aims. He then successfully intimidated Lithuania into submitting to the Germans and annexed the former German region of Memel, which had been ceded to Lithuania after World War I. The Poles, however, were unwilling to surrender without a fight. Hitler decided to conquer Poland first and then turn to the west. As for securing allies, Italy was willing but Japan hesitant. Japan was interested only in an ally against the USSR, not against France and Britain. In a reversal of his former anti-Communist stance, Hitler turned to the USSR.

The Soviet Union had made offers of agreements in prior years, but Hitler had turned them away. Now, in Hitler’s eyes, the Soviet Union could help destroy Poland and then provide Germany with supplies while Nazi forces defeated Britain and France. Then, in turn, Hitler would crush the Soviet Union. Consequently, concessions made to Soviet leader Joseph Stalin made no difference to Hitler—they would all be taken back later. Hitler offered Stalin whatever he wanted to get an agreement signed. Inducements included a plan to split Eastern Europe between Germany and the Soviet Union, and a promise that the USSR need only remain neutral in case of a German conflict with another nation, instead of having to fight on the German side. The deal, the Nazi-Soviet Pact, was signed on August 23, 1939. Germany's ambassadors to London, Paris, and the Polish capital of Warsaw were recalled from their posts. On Hitler’s orders, the invasion of Poland began on September 1, 1939. Almost immediately, Britain and France declared war on Germany. World War II had begun.

Polish resistance was no match for the German army, and the country quickly fell. Hitler had originally hoped to attack in the west in late 1939, but bad weather forced postponement. In the meantime the German navy urged an occupation of Denmark and Norway and war with the United States. Hitler agreed to the first stage, an operation conducted in April 1940, but preferred to postpone war with the United States until he could either complete construction of a navy large enough to fight the Americans or could acquire an ally who had one. In May and June of 1940, Hitler’s forces routed the armies of the Netherlands, Belgium, and France.

Although Hitler failed to subdue Britain, he felt that by driving all resistance off the European continent he had effectively won the war in the west. He immediately accelerated the preparations for war with the United States and decided to attack the USSR in the fall of 1940. The British refusal to surrender confirmed his decision to attack the USSR; advice from the military led him to delay the invasion until late spring of 1941. Hitler believed the United States would come to Britain’s aid, and a German invasion of the USSR would encourage Japan to attack the Americans before they had a chance to help the British. He also encouraged a Japanese attack by promising to join Japan in a war against the United States. Japan had the large navy Hitler felt he needed.

The invasion of the USSR was launched in spite of Stalin’s attempts to prevent it. Even though Hitler had been massing troops on the border with the USSR for several weeks prior to the invasion, Stalin insisted that Soviet forces should take no action that could provoke the Nazis. His policies proved futile, and the attack began on June 22, 1941. The Germans seriously underestimated the USSR, however, especially the ability of its government to control and mobilize the country’s resources. The Soviet army halted and then defeated the Germans in 1941 and crushed subsequent German offensives in 1942 and 1943.

As his armies were rolling through Polish resistance, Hitler stepped up the elimination of peoples he saw as inferior to Germans. Shortly after their 1939 conquest of Poland, the Germans began killing thousands of Poles and driving thousands more out of their homes to make way for German settlers. The Nazis also herded Jewish Poles into city ghettoes, killing thousands of them and condemning the rest to starvation. Within Germany, Hitler ordered a programme to systematically kill handicapped Germans, and over 200,000 were eventually murdered.

The German authorities planned to kill all Jews in the portions of the USSR they occupied and began the process in the summer of 1941. In late July 1941, Hitler decided to extend the systematic killing of Jews to all of German-occupied Europe. After the renewed German offensive in the USSR in October 1941 appeared to make great progress, he decided the time had come to go even further: all Jews on Earth would be killed. However, the Nazis found that German police and soldiers who did the killing were often traumatized by the experience. To make the slaughter faster and less stressful, the Germans built specially designed death camps, primarily in occupied Poland, to which Jews and other prisoners from all over Europe were transported. These camps contained large gas chambers where hundreds of prisoners at a time could be quickly, easily, and impersonally murdered by poison gas.

In his public speeches, Hitler repeatedly referred to the killing of Europe's Jews but without detailing the process. Because the Allies halted Germany's forces, Hitler's global ambitions were not realized; however, of the approximately 18 million Jews in the world, one-third were killed in what came to be known as the Holocaust. The great majority of European Jews perished, a fact that Hitler boasted of in his last testament.

By the time of the Allied D-Day invasion of Normandy (see Normandy Campaign), in northern France, in June 1944, the war was going very badly for Hitler. A series of losses to the Allies and failure to defeat the Soviet Union had left Hitler’s armies severely weakened. Hitler's Germany had also changed a great deal. British and American bombers were devastating its industries and cities. The Germans who had reservations about Hitler’s regime had begun to find some recruits. However, most of the population still supported the regime and especially Hitler; consequently, those opposed to him saw his assassination followed by a military takeover as the only way to topple the dictatorship. Several assassination attempts, beginning in March 1943, miscarried. A bomb was placed in Hitler’s headquarters at Rastenberg in East Prussia (modern Poland) on July 20, 1944 (see July Plot), but did not kill him. The conspirators tried to launch their coup anyway, but with little support the effort failed. Hundreds involved in the coup attempt were executed, and Hitler maintained control of the country.

Underestimating the Americans, Hitler launched his last reserves west into the Ardennes country of Belgium and Luxembourg in the Battle of the Bulge (December 1944-January 1945). He felt that despite massive Allied gains, a hard blow would cause popular support for the war in America to collapse, and would lead to the disintegration of the coalition arrayed against him. All he accomplished, however, was to draw away troops needed in the east, allowing the Soviet army's winter offensive to roll all the way to the gates of Berlin. Hitler decided to remain in the city, hoping to inspire its defenders and anticipating a breakup of the Allies’ alliance. When neither of these hopes were realized, he appointed Karl Dönitz, the head of the navy and a devoted Nazi, as his successor. He then married his mistress Eva Braun and committed suicide in Berlin on April 30, 1945.

Hitler left Germany and much of Europe in ruins. Over 60 million people died worldwide in the war, and tens of millions more lost their health and homes. Certain that they did not want to fight the Germans a third time, the Allies insisted on an unconditional surrender. They occupied all of Germany and divided it into British, French, American, and Soviet zones. Even after the western zones were joined into the Federal Republic of Germany in 1949, the country remained divided until 1990.

The German people discovered for the first time the extent to which modern warfare could destroy a country. World War I had not been fought to any great extent on German soil. The events of the war also demonstrated to many Germans the problems of dictatorship. Increasing numbers were now prepared to try a different, democratic, path at home, as well as an attempt at reconciliation with their neighbours. Both projects would take time, but they were major departures in the history of Germany and of Europe.

The war also brought the Soviet Army into central Europe and provided the Soviet regime with legitimacy in the eyes of its own people, a new empire in eastern and south-eastern Europe, and superpower status in the world. The world role of the United States was also enhanced in spite of the American preference for remaining isolated. Outside of Europe, the war hastened the end of colonial empires and the emergence of the new Jewish state of Israel. It also brought about the creation of new international organizations like the United Nations that might prevent such wars in the future.

Ironically, these developments were the exact opposite of what Hitler had hoped for. His ambition to make Berlin the capital of the world was not realized, and the enormous buildings he started designing for it in the 1920s were never built. Hitler combined organizational and manipulative talents with great cunning. He was simultaneously obsessed with fantastic visions and blinded to reality by those very visions. However, many Germans shared at least a portion of those visions. This support made it possible for Hitler to utilize the resources of Europe's second largest population and most advanced economy to pursue his ends. The result was an outburst of destruction that consumed the lives of millions and transformed the world.
« Poslednja izmena: 13. Jul 2007, 09:19:36 od mimago »
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« Poslednja izmena: 13. Jul 2007, 15:51:43 od hkj »
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АТЕНТАТ НА ХИТЛЕРА

Немачки отпор против Хитлера могао је да успе ако би неки виши команданти јединица били спремни на сарадњу. Бар тако је изгледало у пролеће 1943. године. Такав „неко“ могао је да буде фелдмаршал Гинтер фон Клуге, који је командовао Групом армија „Центар“ на совјетско-немачком фронту. Посебно се први официр његовог штаба Хенинг фон Тресков, много трудио да придобије фон Клугеа за отпор. Тресков је припадао роду пруских официра, а нацисте је свим срцем мрзео. После дугих разговора са фон Клугеом, пошло му је за руком да га убеди како Хитлер мора да се уклони.

Али, фон Клуге је увек устукнуо од своје сагласности баш у тренутку када је изгледало да га је Тресков придобио. Ово се десило не само Трескову већ и бившем градоначелнику Лајпцига, Карлу Герделеру, у то време једном од водећих личности немачког отпора нацизму. У јесен 1942, он је помоћу фалсификованих докумената, које је издао генерал Остер из обавештајне службе, стигао у фон Клугеов штаб. Разговарали су дуго. Изгледало је да су Герделерови аргументи импресионирали фон Клугеа и убедили га у потребу акције. Међутим, по Герделеровом одласку, фон Клуге се опет повукао. Ипак, пораз код Стаљинграда је и на фон Клугеа оставио горак утисак, па је био спремнији за отпор и оптимистички гледао на њетов исход. За то је постојао и други разлог: отприлике у то време отпору се прикључила група младих официра. Захваљујући искуствима са, или боље речено, иза совјетско-немачког фронта, постали су зрели за отпор. Тек тада су схватили какав злочиначки режим држи њихову земљу у рукама. Њихова узнемиреност дала је отпору нове импулсе. Наваљивали су на старије да се што пре нешто предузме. Сматрали су да само Хитлерова смрт може да избрише његов утицај и учини крај злочинима. Изјавили су да су спремни да изврше тај задатак.

Сада је још било потребно да се Хитлер подстакне да посети Групу армија „Центар" чији се штаб налазио у Смоленску. Изгледало је да је Клуге придобијен, а Тресков је око себе сакупио групу официра решених да дејствују. Проблем се, међутим, није могао баш тако лако да реши. Хитлер готово никад није напуштао свој штаб. Када би некуда полазио, тајио би циљ свог кретања што је дуже могао. Официри из пратње обавештавани су тек у последњем тренутку. Често се догађало да се најављене посете откажу, а у случају кад је Хитлер долазио, предузимане су обимне мере предострожности. За време посете био би обустављен железнички саобраћај. Од аеродрома до штаба никада се није возио војним аутомобилом, већ у једној од четири специјалне аутоколоне које су увек биле спремне да оду на место које је Хитлер хтео да посети. Најзад, ту је била и стража која Хитлера никада није остављала самог.

Завереници су прво планирали да неколицина официра убије Хитлера за време обеда у штабу Групе армија. Фон Клуге је упознат с овим планом, како да би могао да се склони у одлучујућем моменту. Он се, међутим, успротавио. Сматрао је да метод није довољно частан, а и бојао се да би меци завереника или Хитлерове страже могли да погоде и тешко замењиве официре. Под његовим утицајем, завереници су одабрали други метод, са којим га овог пута нису упознали. Одлучено је да се кутаја динамита са темпираним упаљачем унесе у Хитлеров авион као пакет, за који би рекли да се ради о поклону за једног од пријатеља у Хитлеровој Врховној команди.

О плану су се опширно договарали са берлинским центром за отпор. Фон Клугеов ађутант Фабијан фон Шлабрендорф, је неколико пута путовао из Смоленска за Берлин. Тамо је посебно разговарао са Остером и Олбрихтом, који је тада био на високом положају код територијалних јединица. Он је могао да се побрине за потребне припреме у Немачкој. Крајем 1942. године рекао је Трескову да му за то треба још осам седмица. Није познато у чему су се састојале његове мере. У Смоленску се, међутим, атентат припремао до најситнијих детаља. Да би се активности у Берлину и Смоленску добро координирале, Остеров шеф, адмирал Канарис, је марта 1943. године организовао пут у Смоленск, јер је, тобоже, био потребан договор са тамошњим обавештајним официрима. Хитлерова посета је тада већ била објављена, али још није био одређен тачан датум.

У Смоленск је заједно са Канарисом стигао и Остер са неколицином блиских сарадника и сандуком делова британских темпираних бомби. Касно увече, после званичних разговора, завереници су разменили мишљења о последњим детаљима, договорили се о лозинкама и сличном. Најзад је, 13. марта, Хитлер је авионом стигао у Смоленск заједно са пратњом. Берлин је тог јутра обавестио фон Клугеа и Трескова тако да су они дошли на аеродром да га поздраве. После опширних договора, Тресков је за време ручка питао пуковника Бранта из Хитлерове пратње, да ли би хтео да понесе пакет са неколико флаша коњака у Берлин. Брант је пристао. Фон Клуте и Тресков су испратили Хитлера и пратњу на аеродром, а фон Шлабрендорф их је следио са динамитом који је био камуфлиран као пакет. Употребљен је британски динамит, јер је за немачки потребаан фитиљ за паљење па би тихо шиштање привукло пажњу. Овај британски динамит палио се темпираним упаљачем, а да при томе не проузрокује звук. Тресков и фон Шлабрендорф су више пута испитали и динамит и упаљач.

Када је Хитлер ушао у авиои, фон Шлабрендорф је кроз пакет притиснуо упаљач и дао пакет Бранту који је такође летео у Хитлеровом авиону. За тридесет минуга требало је да дође до експлозије. Сви упућени напето су чекали. Њихово разочарење није имало граница када је после неколико часова јављено да је Хитлер добро стигао. Центар отпора у Берлину је одмах упознат с неуспелим нападом, а фон Шлабрендорф је назвао Бранта да му саопшти да је случајно дат погрешан пакет. Рекао је да ће сам да дође да га замени. У спаваћим колима воза којим се враћао из Врховне команде опрезно је отворио пакет. Испоставило се да се ударна игла померила унапред, а упаљач, можда због ниске температуре у авиону, није прорадио. Само је мало недостајало.

Да потсетимо, Хитлер је већ преживео један покушај атентата, када га на самом почетку рата умало није убио Георг Елзер, столар по занимању.

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На овоме свету могу да кажем што се дешава то није истина...мислим на овоме свету, што бих нагласио..да...пропаганда, што већина кажу, о овоме..није истина.
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Život je igra u kojoj ne postoji save game

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Sta je sa fon Staufenbergovim pokusajem atentata? To je jedan od najpoznatijih. Sad cu bas da pogledam da li imam to negde.
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Zvezda u usponu

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Дај види да ли је било још атентата, било би занимљиво знати.
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На овоме свету могу да кажем што се дешава то није истина...мислим на овоме свету, што бих нагласио..да...пропаганда, што већина кажу, о овоме..није истина.
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Život je igra u kojoj ne postoji save game

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Eve ga.

CLAUS SCHENK GRAF VON STAUFFENBERG

Stauffenberg, Claus Schenk, Graf von (1907-1944), German army officer who tried to assassinate Adolf Hitler in 1944. Stauffenberg was born into the Catholic nobility of Bavaria in Jettingen on November 15, 1907. As young men he and his elder brother Berthold joined the circle of the poet Stefan George.

After military training in Dresden and Hanover Stauffenberg became a member of a cavalry regiment, the Bamberger Reiter, in 1930. He was suspicious of the Nazi regime from its establishment in 1933 and had certainly turned against it by 1938, partly because its anti-Christian propaganda offended his Catholic faith. Even so, he served on the army supply staff in Poland from September 1939 to June 1940, when he was transferred to the Army High Command. In Tunisia in April 1943 he lost his left eye, his right hand, and two fingers of his left hand when he was strafed by a British fighter plane.

In October 1943 Stauffenberg was promoted to colonel and appointed to the supply section of the Reserve Army under Colonel General Friedrich Olbricht, a leading figure in a secret plot to overthrow the Nazis concealed within the regime's own “Valkyrie” plans for emergencies. It also involved Colonel General Ludwig Beck, a former chief of staff; Carl Gördeler, a former lord mayor of Leipzig; Ulrich, Freiherr von Hassell, a former ambassador; the military planner Major-General Henning von Tresckow; and many others. Resistance groups had begun forming in 1938, but had been divided by political views, rebuffed by Britain and the United States, and marginalized as long as the German armies were victorious. They had suffered a major blow when Helmuth von Moltke and other anti-Nazis in the Abwehr had been arrested early in 1944, but their sense of urgency was increased by the knowledge that the German war effort would soon collapse.

Stauffenberg's task after joining the group was to kill Adolf Hitler, to whom he was granted direct personal access from July 1, 1944. On his fourth attempt, on July 20, 1944, he detonated a bomb inside Hitler's military headquarters, the “Wolf's Lair” at Rastenburg (now Ketrzyn in Poland), then flew to Berlin to take over the Army High Command building on Bendlerstrasse and contact sympathizers in Paris and Vienna, who began arresting SS officers and other Nazi leaders. However, Hitler had survived the explosion. Stauffenberg, his adjutant Wener von Häften, Beck, Olbricht, and his chief of staff Colonel Albrecht, and Ritter Mertz von Quernheim, were shot dead that evening. In the following months at least 200 people, including Gördeler, Hassell, Moltke, and Berthold Stauffenberg, were executed in connection with what is sometimes called the “July Plot”. (Tretschkow killed himself, as Beck had tried to.) Stauffenberg's surviving relatives, including his pregnant wife Nina, were detained in various camps and forbidden to use the title “von Stauffenberg”, but were reunited after the end of the war. Since then they have used “von Stauffenberg” as their family name.

Bendlerstrasse has since been renamed Stauffenbergstrasse. A monument to the German resistance stands on it, and a museum nearby (opened in 1994) honours the members of the “July Plot” along with others who resisted the Nazis.
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Sertifikovani hejter i negativac

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kako vas ne smori Hitler...
da,bilo je brojnih atentata na njega od strane Nemaca...grupa se zvala SOE...
nego,one je bio preambiciozni i nerealni kreten koji je mislio da je ceo svet osvojiv,a zaboravio kako prevelike sile kratko traju i kako je nemoguce pokoriti ceo svet...
nista dobor od njega nije proizaslo...totalno sludjen covek...
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Život je igra u kojoj ne postoji save game

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 :-k Navedi mi barem dva vladara koji su pokusali da osvoje nesto "krupno" (Evropu, svet,...), a da nisu imali neki psihicki ili fizicki poremecaj.
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Ucesnik diskusija


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Bush  :mrgreen:
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Svakodnevni prolaznik


Благо оном ко довјека живи, имао се рашта и родити

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Буш је идиот. Не можеш њега у исти кош са Хитлером...

Хитлер је био паметан, али луд... А Буш и глуп и луд...
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