The twentieth century was a time of change. With two world wars occurring within roughly three decades, it was no surprise that society became forever changed. These two world wars, however, resulted in perhaps one of the most significant and catastrophic events in history - the Holocaust. The Holocaust saw about six million Jews killed by command of German dictator Adolf Hitler. Despite resulting from World War II, however, Hitler’s massive genocide of European Jews was planned before the Second World War, and therefore was intentionalism, because of the blame from post-World War I Germany, the twentieth century movement of eugenics as a “racial hygiene”, and the actions to exterminate Jews before the outbreak of World War II.
Faced with harsh peace terms at the end of World War I, Germany was put in the perfect position for extreme political turmoil to rise, along with the need to place the blame for the German defeat. The Treaty of Versailles, which was the Allies’ peace treaty with Germany following World War I, “... took territories from Germany in the east and west, destroyed the Austro-Hungarian Empire, humiliated Germans by including a “war guilt” clause, imposed disarmament, and demanded heavy reparation payments for war damage” (Weisser). This “peace” treaty, littered with bitter terms for Germany, did great harm to the nation. Germany was not only stripped of its once powerful nation by depriving it of its territories and armaments; but also by the destruction of its economy through hyperinflation, a result of printing more money in order to pay reparations. This treaty therefore ruined Germany, putting it in an atrocious state, which would eventually allow for dramatic political change and the placing of blame for the German defeat.
As a result of Treaty of Versailles, extreme political turmoil took place in Germany. According to an article known as “World War I: Aftermath”, the onerous peace terms of the Treaty of Versailles destroyed the democracy that was the Weimar Republic, and fueled the desire for an authoritarian rule, which German voters found in Adolf Hitler and his National Socialist Party ("World War I: Aftermath"). The detrimental Treaty of Versailles, through its severe peace terms, left Germany in a disastrous state. The middle class, no longer impressed by the Weimar Republic, and having almost no hope for the country itself, became convinced only a strong leader like Adolf Hitler could save the nation of Germany. “Dispirited by postwar inflation and the effects of the world depression, a substantial minority of Germans voted for candidates in Adolf Hitler’s extremist Nazi Party in the nation’s 1933 elections” (Weisser). Subsequently, Hitler owes his successful rise to power to the dreadful Treaty of Versailles which impoverished the nation of Germany.
Hitler, however, brought with him the Dolchstosslegende, or the stab-in-the-back legend, necessitating the act of placing the blame for the loss of World War I....