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Cumulative Radicalisation

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Ben Smith

on 11 March 2011

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Transcript of Cumulative Radicalisation

Cumulative Radicalisation Working Toward the Fuhrer Part of Members of the German State and Party Bureaucracy took the initiative to start policys to go along with Hitlers percieved wishes Cumulative Radicalisation is the way in which Nazi policy became increasingly more extreme Because power in the Nazi state revolved around your access to Hitler. People would Work towards what they believed was the Fuhrers will, because of this people in the German state would become increasingly more extreme so they could get one up on their rivals and get closer to the Fuhrer Why did the Third Reich become more radical ?? Hitlers Weltanschauung Structure and Operation of The Third Reich Hitlers increasing power Adoption of more Radical Policies War, Genocide and other atrocities Lack of Contraints Radical Momentum Lack of Formal Restraints Hitlers Popularity Decay of collective Government No institutional Constraints Hitler Myth Source Q: The assumption that the fragmentation of politics arose from a deliberate divide and rule strategy on Hitler’s part is, however, misleading. Rather this was a reflection of the social-Darwinist conviction that the best man would ultimately prevail. The consequent technique of operating through special emissaries promised short run efficiency, but meant in the long run that a great deal of energy was wasted in personal feuds and taken up by increasing inter-departmental rivalries as well as between party and state agencies. These mechanisms were, however, of the utmost importance from the development of the regime. The social Darwinist struggle led to an escalating ruthlessness in pursuit of the extreme goals of the movement, and thus to a process of cumulative radicalisation. Owing to the lack of institutional guarantees, individual’s chieftains felt compelled to fight competitors with all means at their disposal. Each office holder tried to gain the special sympathies of the Fuhrer by appearing as a fanatical fighter for the realisation of visionary and extreme goals of the Weltanschauung.

Hans Mommsen, ‘Cumulative Radicalisation and Progressive Self-destruction as Structural Determinants of the Nazi Dictatorship’. In Ian Kershaw, Hitler, 1998
Hans Mommsen Source S: the office of Fuhrer has developed out of the National Socialist Movement. In its origins it is not a state office…The position of the Fuhrer combines itself all sovereign power of the Reich; all public power in the state as in the movement is derived from Fuhrer power… For it is not the state as an impersonal entity which is the source of political power but rather political power is given to the Fuhrer as the executor of the nations common will…Fuhrer power is not restricted by safeguards and controls, but rather it is free and independent, exclusive and unlimited.

Ernst Huber, 1934, a constitutional theorist quoted in J. Noakes and G Pridham, Nazism 1919-1945, 2000
Ernst Huber Source T: The Fuhrer is the supreme judge of the nation. There is no position ion the constitutional law in eh Third Reich independent of this elemental will of the Fuhrer…Constitutional Law in the third Reich is the legal formulation of the historic will of the Fuhrer.

Hans Frank, 1938, Nazi Assoc. of Lawyers and of the German Academy of Law quoted in J. Noakes and G Pridham, Nazism 1919-1945, 2000
Hans Frank
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