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The Second Most Powerful Man In Germany

2304 words - 10 pages

Greed, covetousness, avarice, cupidity; these are what killed Heinrich Himmler, the second most powerful man in Germany to Adolf Hitler during World War II. As the second most feared man in the Nazi regime, (Smith) he could not handle just being the second most; he had to be the most powerful. Himmler was in charge of the SS, SA, SD, Gestapo, and eventually provisional president of the police of Munich. The Holocaust began in Germany in the early 1920s and ended in 1945. The Holocaust caused the death of 6 million Jewish people and 5 million non-Jewish people. At least 1.1 million of that 11 million were children. The SS (Schutzstaffel) was the secret police of the Nazis, Hitler’s bodyguard. By the end of the Holocaust, two thirds of the Jews from Europe were killed by these men. The SA, a force similar to the SS but much less authoritative, was originally led by Ernst Roehm, but Himmler persuaded Hitler to kill him. (Encyclopedia of World Biography) When Roehm was dead, Himmler took authority over his division. The Gestapo was the police force that was in charge of all of the camps. They worked in camps and took the lives of millions of prisoners in the camps that Himmler designed. Even though Himmler had so much power, he constantly wanted more and more, worrying that he would lose supremacy over these divisions, and relentlessly doing anything possible to become the number one most powerful man in this era.
Heinrich Himmler was born on October 17, 1900 to the son of a Catholic school teacher. (Encyclopedia of World Biography) He was brought up as a devout Roman Catholic in a close middleclass family. He had two brothers, Ernst Himmler and Gebhard Ludwig Himmler, with Heinrich being the middle child. (Worth) He graduated from a high school in Landshut, Germany when he was nineteen. Just before the age of twenty, he was old enough to fight in World War I, and he enlisted. (Trueman) Even though he wanted to fight in it very badly, he never got to participate in any way. After WWI, he studied to be a poultry farmer and a businessman from the Technical University in Munich, Germany. (Worth) He failed at those careers, but the Nazi party’s growing success drew him in. (“Heinrich Himmler.” Himmler joined the Nazi party in 1923 when he was only twenty-three years old. (Encyclopedia Britannica online)
Himmler got married to Margarete Boden on July 3, 1928. (“Heinrich Himmler.” His daughter, Gudrin, was born in 1929. (“Heinrich Himmler.” United States Memorial Museum) He absolutely adored Gudrin and took her everywhere with him. He called her ‘Püppi’ which means, doll. (“Heinrich Himmler.” His wife, Margarete, thought Himmler was simply a German police man, not a feared leader of the SS. She was very anti-Semitic, and supported what the SS and the Nazi’s did. (“Love Letters of a Nazi Monster” Mail Online. Associated Newspapers) ...

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