Hitler outlines the platform of the National German’s German Workers Party, which eventually becomes the Nazi Party, in a speech delivered to 2,000 people on February 24, 1920. Hitler outlined the goals of his newly renamed party, and true to it’s socialist roots, many points of the platform are extremely socialist. For example, Hitler called for equal rights for all citizens, profit-sharing from large industries, and increases in retirement pensions. In addition, he wanted public education of poor students, as well as maternity welfare centers. The common image of the Nazi Party is restrictive, unyielding, and forceful. When the word “Nazi” is heard, the first association is Auschwitz, and the socialist roots of the party remain undiscussed. However, it is important to note that Hitler calls for these benefits to German citizens, not simply the inhabitants of Germany. He recognizes a clear hierarchy amongst the races, and Aryan is the only race that truly deserves to inhabit Germany. He called for the end of immigration of non-Germans, and the expulsion of non-Germans if food supplies were to run short.

The portions in regards to the superiority of the German race is more in line with the traditional view of Nazism. Hitler’s solution to solving race problems was to expunge non-Germans, which would also cause the available wealth to be distributed more evenly to the superior German race. Upon reflection, it is difficult to accept that an entire nation would be willing to join a party committed to destroying an “inferior people,” but many elements of the party platform remain undiscussed. When an individual is taking home wheelbarrows full of worthless money, the idea of retirement pensions is extremely appealing. While the Jews were not responsible for the terrible peace treaty, the Jews were an easy scapegoat, and the socialist platform was appealing to many Germans. Hitler’s charisma and the turmoil caused by the Treaty of Versailles is often used as the explanation for the rise of Nazism. However, ignoring the socialist platform is disregarding an extremely important part of the popularity of Nazism.

2 thoughts on “Nazism

  1. One thing that Hitler mentions in his twenty-five points (and you mention it too) is education and how all children, no matter their socioeconomic status should have access to education. My question here is this: Why did Hitler want everyone to have an education? Ultimately, I want to know what Hitler wanted to get out of the education system, for we know that he had a plan for everything. It would make sense for Hitler to encourage education and hire educators who felt strongly about his ideologies, therefore they could impart his teachings on the German youth. While I do not know this to be true, it seems like it would be a smart tactic and a way in which Hitler could brainwash the youth of Germany; for if their schoolteachers were telling them to believe in Hitler, students would become even more passionate and grow up to be anti-semitic, exactly what Hitelr wanted them to be.

  2. Hitler did have a plan for all of the education, gymnastics, and swimming–the Hitler Youth. He wanted to educate German children in the ideology of his party, while keeping them isolated from knowledge about the rest of the world. As point 17 states, he wanted to teach “the German Way.” Hitler’s support of education likely had less to do with his concern for the budding minds of German children and more to do with the indoctrination of a new generation of Nazis.

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