HOW FAR DID GERMAN HISTORY INFLUENCE NAZI FOREIGN POLICY: Part 1/2

I know, really strange place to start but this is what my mock is on so, deal with it 😀

This section will cover the 1.5 Question:

HOW FAR DID GERMAN HISTORY INFLUENCE NAZI FOREIGN POLICY:

Hitler had 3 main strands of his historical view:

  • Largely fictional ‘racial History’
  • Nostalgia for earlier empires & land and power were Germany’s right.
  • First World War and the Treaty of Versailles.

How Did Aryan Racial Theory Nazi Foreign Policy? 

  • Aryan = superior race over all other races. Included ethnic groups: Black, Asians, Russian and Eastern European Slavs and especially Jews. This also included: gypsies and the disabled.
  • True Germans were Aryans, thought other Northern European Countries (Including Britain) had Aryan Roots. Favoured diplomatic alliances with these ‘acceptable’ countries.  Aryan Empire = Pan Germanism
  • Favoured German Expansion eastwards, taking land from those socially inferior. Still made alliances with inferior countries for temporary advantage.

Why the Third Reich?

  • Germany returned to rightful power. Nazis were not revisionists (like Weimar) – wanted to overturn Versailles and expand to secure more land than German had in 1914.
  • Focus on: The First Reich (Charlemagne, Holy Roman Empire 800-1806) and the Second Reich (founded by Otto von Bismarck after Prussia defeated France, 1871, by 1914 it was falling apart) – both empires gained land, keeping it by war and military strength. Worked Hard diplomatically for acceptance. 
  • Nazi Propaganda focused on the glory of these empires and influenced Hitler, especially in his earlier years as he stressed his desire for peace. 
  • Reminiscing the earlier empires gave them cred(ibility) and appealing to Nationalist Germans and those who wanted History. Stressed they were ‘restoring’ and ‘continuing’ a great Germany. 
  • Propaganda postcards showed: Frederick the Great (ruler of Prussia, 1740-86), Bismarck, Hindenburg and Hitler facing one direction. “What the King conquered, the Prince formed, the Field Marshall defended and the solider saved and unified” (See Featured Picture)

 

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