Essay The Effectiveness of Hitler's Pre-World War II Propaganda

Essay The Effectiveness of Hitler's Pre-World War II Propaganda

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The mention of the name Adolf Hitler automatically recalls one of the most hate filled and destructive periods in the history of humanity. More people died in World War 2 than in any war ever fought, but it wasn't merely soldiers; innocent civilians were persecuted for nothing more than their views of the government or for their religion. The specific focus here will be to deal with Hitler's hatred of the Jews, and how it progressed in the years before the war. The other point to bring up from this time was the Nazi's use of propaganda to rally their people and deceive the foreign community from strongly intervening in their plans.

To (attempt to) understand the actions taken by Hitler, one must first try and understand his unrelenting hatred of the Jews. There are many stories as to how this came to be, some proving more truthful and likely than others. The first claim, presented by Rudolph Binion in his book Hitler Among the Germans, is that Hitler's hate developed with the death of his mother. His mother Klara was diagnosed with a very advanced form of breast cancer by Jewish doctor named Edward Bloch. Hitler consulted the doctor and it was determined that the best form of treatment would be to apply "iodoform directly onto the ulcerations caused by the cancer." The treatment was very painful and performed in the kitchen of the family's home. The malignant cancer had spread to far, and by December of 1907, Klara had died. When Hitler went to see Dr. Bloch, he handed Hitler a bill that amounted to 10% percent of Klara's estate. According to Binion, this incident cemented in Hitler's subconscious a stereotype [probably of greed or of having no compassion or soul] associated with Jews. Binion also related this incid...


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...se through means of persuasion. Propaganda was the second most powerful means of getting support within Germany, but it was most effective in getting foreigners to stand bye idly while the Nazi's committed their crimes against the Jews and other minorities. Germany received respect from the foreign press for its efficiency in the Olympics, which was a precursor to the `efficiency' they showed in slaughtering millions of innocent captives in concentration camps. Yet the Nazi's, lead by their charismatic leader, were able to pass their laws in a legitimate fashion, and persuade the world to look the other way. The world stood by in fear and awe, hoping the storm would just blow over, but by September 1939 Hitler and the Nazi's had progressed too far, and there was no stopping them from undertaking in what would be the most lethal war in the history of the world.

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