A.H Adolf Hitler

Early Life

Adolf Hitler was born in Braunau am Inn, Austria on April 20, 1889. He was the fourth of six children born to Alois Hitler, a customs official, and his third wife Klara. During his early days, Hitler had difficulty fitting in and his parents often disagreed on his upbringing. However, he had a good relationship with his mother which was significantly different from his relationship with his father, who was strict and often violent.
Hitler had an artistic temperament and did not like discipline. He was frequently in trouble at school and had an avid interest in German nationalist and anti-Semitic ideologies. In 1903, his father died and the now teenaged Hitler took up more local jobs odd jobs to support the family. In 1905, Hitler left school with ambitions to become an artist, but his mother insisted he join the civil service, so he apprenticed for a local customs office instead.


Hitler’s racial ideologies appear to have been largely influenced by the 19th century racial theorists such as Arthur de Gobineau. His anti-Semitic beliefs, by contrast, were shaped by the anti-Semitism common in the upper and middle class households of the fin de siècle and the anti-Jewish terrorism of Prussian nationalist groups. In 1909 he moved to Vienna, where he encountered a large anti-Semitic population and some of the most notorious anti-Semites and racists of the time, such as Karl Lueger and Georg von Schönerer.

World War I

In 1914, the outset of World War I saw a change in Hitler’s life. He was eager to fight and volunteered in the German army. In Flanders, on the frontlines, Hitler demonstrated uncommon bravery and was eventually promoted to the rank of Corporal. In 1918, Hitler was blinded by a mustard gas attack and spent time in a hospital in Pasewalk. Upon his recovery, Hitler heard the news that Germany had surrendered, leading him to adopting an antipathetic attitude towards the Weimar Republic, and fueling his anti-Semitic rhetoric as he blamed Jews for Germany’s defeat.

Rise to Power

In 1919, Hitler joined the German Worker’s Party (DAP) which he would soon rename and revamp into the Nationalsozialistische Deutsche Arbeiterpartei (NSDAP) or Nazi Party. He spoke out his racial ideologies and drew in the attention of many who wanted to support his cause, quickly moving up the ranks of the organization. In 1923, he attempted to thrust his party into power by attempting a coup d’état – the Nazi Party followed up on this failed effort with a successful election in 1933, and Hitler was appointed Chancellor of Germany, where he formed a coalition government.

Cult of Personality

Hitler quickly became the face of the Nazi Party, and cultivated a cult of personality that would benefit him greatly. Utilizing powerful, but theatrical gestures and thinly veiled allusions to German superiority, Hitler became a symbol of hope to a desperate nation. Every rally, speech and procession was full of energy and enthusiasm, all channeled through their leader in absolute devotion. Hitler knew how to manipulate the emotions of the crowd, and as his role became increasingly secured, his speeches became increasingly elaborate, eventually becoming almost 2 hours long.

The Nazi Regime

The Nazi regime aimed to create a socialist state with a focus on an ‘Aryan’ race superstate in which Germans possessed the most power, followed by other Nordic or Germanic peoples. This new order was to eliminate lower class ‘non-Aryans’, the mentally impaired, religious and political dissidents and anyone else deemed ‘undesirable’. Nazi policies of this kind were enacted through various means, such as the Reichstag Fire Decree which allowed Hitler to suspend basic civil rights and pass laws without parliamentary consent, and the Enabling Act which gave Hitler sweeping legislative powers. Nazi Germany also carried out large scale genocide, murdering millions of people deemed ‘undesirable’ by Hitler.

World War II

In 1939, Hitler unleashed World War II when Nazi Germany invaded Poland, triggering a European conflict. In 1941, Germany occupied the Eastern territories and declared war on the United States after the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor. Facing the Allied Forces on multiple fronts, Hitler sought to obtain an advantage by using the element of surprise and seeking out new weapons and tactics.
In 1945, faced with inevitable defeat, Hitler and his wife, Eva Braun, committed suicide in his Berlin bunker. Upon Hitler’s death, his forces surrendered, ending World War II.


Since his death, Adolf Hitler’s legacy continues to be highly contentious; with some deifying him as a courageous leader, while others revile him as a megalomaniacal mass murderer. Hitler is also to blame for unforeseen consequences which continue to shape the world today, from the way we think about political racism and the rise of neo-fascism, to the modern state of Israel.

Foreign Policy

In foreign policy, Hitler was committed to violently expanding the German Empire. He sought to build German hegemony in Europe and the world at large with a vision for a new German-led order in Eurasia. In an effort to achieve this goal, Hitler signed the Molotov-Ribbentrop pact with the Soviet Union which allowed them to divide Eastern Europe and take Lithuania, Latvia and Estonia as its own. He also extended financial support to fascist Italy, Nazi puppet states such as Slovakia, and various non-Nazi states such as Finland and Romania, while also supporting the Japanese Empire throughout their occupation of the Far East.

Military Strategy

Hitler’s military strategy consisted of two main strategies: blitzkrieg and scorched earth, both of which were designed to quickly conquer enemy territories. Blitzkrieg, meaning ‘lightning war’, involved fast and mobile incursions by German forces to cut off the enemy’s supply and communication lines, while scorched-earth tactics involved aimed to deplete a region’s resources and make it uninhabitable for future enemy occupation. He also established the Waffen-SS, a paramilitary unit of the Nazi Party, to serve as the main armed force of the Third Reich and was responsible for some of the most notorious wartime atrocities.

Economic Policy

Hitler’s economic policy served as the cornerstone of his National Socialist agenda and aimed to create a ‘people’s capitalism’ in which the state would take responsibility for the economic wellbeing of the German population. He sought to drive rapid industrialization, create employment and increase living standards, while also providing food security and social security by establishing programs such as ‘Strength Through Joy’ and ‘Kraft durch Freude’.
To achieve these goals, the Nazi regime enacted a series of economic reforms such as reducing unemployment through public works and state investment, instituting price controls, creating subsidies and creating government-controlled trusts to manage major industries. It is argued that Hitler’s economic policies provided immediate relief to a public that was suffering from the ramifications of the Great Depression, and it is also argued that his policies enabled Germany to arm and equip its military forces on a massive scale in preparation for World War II.

Elizabeth Baker is an experienced writer and historian with a focus on topics related to famous world dictators. She has over 10 years of experience researching, writing, and editing history books and articles. Elizabeth is passionate about uncovering lost stories from the past and sharing interesting facts about some of the most notorious dictators in history. In her writing, she emphasizes how dictators can still affect modern-day politics and society. She currently lives in Seattle, Washington where she continues to write and research for her latest projects.

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