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Kurt Von Schleicher And The Rise Of Nazism In Germany

1024 words - 4 pages

The nineteen thirties proved to be a decade of turmoil politically, economically, and socially in Germany. While the German government continued to be one of disorder and confusion throughout this time, January 1933 is a principle period to focus on when studying the turbulence of the country's government. The thirty days included in this month are a primary target time span to center on in order to understand Adolph Hitler's rise to power. Many men, and specifically Kurt von Schleicher, played paramount roles politically in regards to Hitler's rise to power in the nineteen-thirties.Kurt von Schleicher played an important role in German politics throughout World War I and on into the uproar in the later thirties. By the spring of 1932, Schleicher had become a close advisor to President Hindenburg. "A member of the minority nobility of western Germany rather than of the Junker aristocracy of the East that predominated in the upper echelons of the office corps, Schleicher had nevertheless enjoyed a rapid rise as a career officer". As Schleicher's political career continued to rise, as he was regularly given tasks that included issues related to defense and transportation. His reputation heightened with his title of defense minister under Chancellor Franz von Papen.From an outsider's view of the German government during this time, one might see an intricate working and respectable institution; however, there was a great deal of chaos and disorder within the internal operations. President Hindenburg continued to support Papen. Papen could make decisions as well as take actions and have a confident feeling that the President would support him in those decisions. The support from Schleicher however, was not nearly as strong if it existed at all. (p.18) Both Papen and Schleicher took active measures against each other with intentions of politically destroying one another. While Schleicher continued to dissolve Papen's political career, he put himself in a position to become chancellor.Franz von Papen resigned from his position on December 2, 1932, at which time President Hindenburg appointed Schleicher Chancellor. Not only did Schleicher become chancellor of Germany, but he also took back over the role of defense minister and commissar for Prussia. Throughout his rule, Schleicher focused on preventing Hitler and the Nazi party from gaining power. He wanted to do this by making a deal with Hitler, or at least gain some type of understanding on where Hitler stood politically as a threat. He wanted to split off the moderate wing of the Nazi Party and gain support from the Catholic trade unions. Schleicher also not only demanded power from the President, but also voiced plans for dissolving the Reichstag and assuming emergency powers.Schleicher attempted to reach the Nazi party on a number of levels. When deals with Hitler did not seem to materialize, Schleicher turned to the second man in command in the Nazi party, Gregor Strasser. While Strasser seemed to...

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