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Hitler As A Totalitarian Dictator Essay

4271 words - 17 pages

Hitler as a Totalitarian Dictator

Before I begin to answer the question, "to what extent was Hitler a
totalitarian dictator", I must first expand on the meanings of these
two widely used political terms. In the "Reader's Digest Great
Encyclopaedic Dictionary", the definition of totalitarian dictator is
as follows: "Totalitarian (adjective). Of, pertaining to, régime which
permits no rival loyalties or parties and arrogates to itself all
rights including those normally belonging to individuals." In short,
totalitarian means a political system that has complete control over
all aspects of people's lives. The very same tome that I previously
quoted from contains this definition of dictator: "Dictator (noun).
Absolute ruler, usually temporary or irregular, of a State; person
with absolute authority in any sphere." These terms elaborated on, I
will attempt to explain and dissect all aspects of Hitler's
dictatorship and comment on how each of them contributed to Hitler's
complete control.

On the twenty-seventh of February 1933, the Reichstag burnt down. The
Reichstag was much like the House of Commons, with the Reichstrat
acting in a similar way to the House of Lords. A Dutch communist by
the name of Marius Van de Lubbe was caught near to the scene in
possession of matches and firelighters. He was taken away by the Nazis
and 'questioned'. He is reported to have confessed, and was tried for
treason. This gave an excuse for the Communist party to be banned from
the government an thus eliminated opposition to Hitler as the
Communist party was the second largest in Germany, and contributed to
his rise to complete control by providing him with a viable scapegoat
and disposing with a major rival.

Also in 1933, the Enabling Act was passed. This allowed a single
person, in this case Hitler, the chancellor, complete control over a
country in crisis. These measures may seem quite harsh but the idea of
the Enabling Act is quite a common one, having been used in Germany
for five years and being used at the same time in the USA. The
Enabling act allowed Hitler to pass laws without them having to go
through parliament, thus decreasing the time taken to actually do
something. One of the first things Hitler did was to ban all other
political parties. This eliminated all political opposition and
allowed him to have complete control by removing any objectors to the
Nazi régime.

When Hitler banned all the political parties, the first party to be
banned was the communist KPD. The socialist SPD party was then banned,
and a 'Law Against the Formation of Parties' was passed, removing the
threat of any new upstarts threatening the Nazis. The leaders of
socialist and communist parties were put in concentration camps, as
well as half of the members of the parties. This allowed Hitler to
have...

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