The Weimar Republic 1919-1933 (Lancaster Pamphlets) by Ruth Henig

By Ruth Henig

This e-book represents a much-needed reappraisal of Germany among the wars, studying the political, social and financial goals of the recent republic, their failure and the way they ended in Nazism and finally the second one international conflict. the writer includes:
* an exam of the legacy of the 1st international battle and the Treaty of Versailles
* dialogue of the early years of concern culminating within the Ruhr Invasion and the Dawes Settlement
* review of the management of Stresemann and Bruning
* exploration of the situations resulting in the increase of Hitler
* an overview of the historiography of the Weimar Republic.

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Sample text

As Mommsen has 14 commented, ‘the silent majority regarded democracy as an imported product implanted in Germany under allied pressure in 1919’. Wilhelmine state officials pledged their loyalty to the new state, but not to individual party governments. And the adoption by the new republic of the black, red and gold revolutionary flag of 1848 enraged nationalists, causing one Freikorps commander to denounce it as a ‘Jewish rag’. Not only did the Weimar Republic face an uphill battle in establishing its political legitimacy, but it also had to contend with the economic legacy of the war.

To begin with, open defiance was widespread. Then, as the allied Control Commission began more systematic surveillance of the size of Germany’s army, the number of paramilitary organisations still in existence and the level of her armaments, the treaty terms were evaded by deception and by secret deals with the Soviet government. Large numbers of Free Corps units were absorbed into the military police, or were passed off as members of the Home Guards of the different German states. Meanwhile, the new German army, a small but select body of hand-picked recruits serving on a long-term basis under its commander, von Seekt, began a programme of intensive modernisation.

These two men took the view that they had no option but to carry through a policy of ‘fulfilment’, endeavouring to meet allied terms, while at the same time trying to persuade allied leaders of the impossibility of Germany, with her weak economy, being in a position to continue for very long with payments on such a scale. For the next eighteen months, this strategy was pursued. It ran into fierce opposition from several quarters. Within Germany, nationalists objected hysterically to the payment of this ‘slave tribute’ to Germany’s former enemies, and attributed all her economic ills, and her depreciating currency, to the continuing payment of reparations.

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