Adolf Hitler

Adolf Hitler, born 20 April 1889 in Braunau am Inn in Austria (then Austria-Hungary) and died by suicide on 30 April 1945 in Berlin; Hitler was a German leader, founder and central figure of Nazism, founder of the totalitarian dictatorship. He was also a politician, painter, author and soldier. Hitler’s best known literary work is Mein Kampf, the political manifesto he dictated to a fellow inmate while in prison in 1924.

Hitler was a powerful speaker. His passion and his words moved people. He promised to build a strong nation, undo the injustice of the Versailles Treaty and restore the dignity of the German people. He promised employment for those looking for work, and a secure future for the youth. He promised to weed out all foreign influences and resist all foreign ‘conspiracies’ against Germany.

Nazi ideology was synonymous with Hitler’s worldview. According to this, there was no equality between people, but only a racial
hierarchy. In this view blond, blue-eyed, Nordic German Aryans were at the top, while Jews were located at the lowest rung. They
came to be regarded as an anti-race, the arch-enemies of the Aryans. All other coloured people were placed in between depending upon their external features.

In the period from 1939 to 1945 Hitler led Germany while engaged in the greatest conflict of the twentieth century, the Second World War. Germany, along with Italy and with Japan, formed the Axis. The Axis would be defeated only by external intervention group of countries calling themselves the “Allies”. This group became notable for having been constituted by the main representatives of the capitalist and socialist systems, including the Soviet Union and the United States. These unions became oppositions in the postwar period, known as the Cold War.

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Under Hitler’s direction, in 1941 the German forces and their allies occupied most of Europe and North Africa. These territorial gains gradually decreased after the battle of Stalingrad, until 1945, when the Allied armies defeated the German army. The Second World War brought about the death of an estimated 50 to 70 million people. In Europe the second world war was the cause of the death of 17 million people, including six million Jews and between 500,000 and 1.5 million gypsies. This was called the Holocaust.

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