Adolf Hitler and Joseph Stalin were two of the most well known dictators of the twentieth century. Despite their many similarities, they had several major differences in their approach to totalitarian rule. While Hitler was very charismatic and managed to gain immense popular support among the German people, Stalin was seen as a sharper and more calculating ruler, who had to resort to ruthless tactics to keep the population in line.
Hitler’s main aim was to create a nation of German Aryan’s, through a process of racial purity, which led to the extermination of millions of Jews. On the other hand, Stalin sought to establish a socialist state and encourage the development of heavy industry and collectivization of farming. This was achieved by means of coerced labor camps, thus earning Stalin’s reputation as a brutal dictator.
Hitler’s ideological convictions were not shared by Stalin, who often employed ruthless means to achieve his political objectives. The Night of the Long Knives, Hitler’s purge of the German population, was conducted without public knowledge, whereas Stalin’s campaign of terror was so overtly oppressive and merciless that it earned him the nickname ‘the red tsar’.
Joseph Stalin’s economic and social policies were vastly different from those of Adolf Hitler. Stalin sought to modernize and industrialize the Soviet Union by implementing the policy of ‘Five-Year Plans’, which aimed at rapid modernization and development of the Soviet economy. Hitler, on the other hand, sought to achieve racial purity at the expense of all else, and his economic policy of autarky (self-sufficient economic system) led to the isolation of Germany from the rest of the world.
Stalin was also renowned for his despotism and use of terror, which was evident in his policy known as ‘Great Terror’, where millions of his political opponents were imprisoned or killed. Hitler, however, chose to establish his authority by becoming the leader of the Nazi Party, and he sought to gain popular support through appealing speeches and his charisma rather than through fear and violence.
Adolf Hitler and Joseph Stalin were two of the most notorious and oppressive rulers of the twentieth century, yet their style of rule and objectives were deeply divergent, with Hitler’s focus on creating a nation of German Aryan’s and Stalin’s productive agenda of industrialization and modernisation. Consequently, it can deduced that the ideologies, methods and objectives of these two dictators were drastically varied and ultimately marked a stark contrast between the two.
One of the main differences between Adolf Hitler and Joseph Stalin was their respective economic policies. Hitler’s misguided economic plan, based on autarky or self-sufficiency, made Germany completely isolated from the international market, which had devastating economic consequences. On the other hand, Stalin encouraged industrialisation and collectivisation of farming in order to modernise the Soviet Union and improve its economic wellbeing. This was achieved by a series of ‘Five Year Plans’. Stalin’s regime also drew heavily on the resources of the Soviet population, thus leading to extreme poverty and suffering.
Hitler and Stalin both wanted to establish their authority in their respective countries and achieve dictatorships, however their ideologies and tactics to achieve power were vastly different. Hitler aimed to gain popular support through his charisma and by exploiting the hatred and propaganda against the Jews, whereas Stalin imposed a reign of terror by purging an estimated 20 million people to keep his population in line.
Hitler’s main agenda was to create an Aryan nation, which led to extreme discrimination of the Jews and other minorities. Hitler proposed the policy of Aryanisation, through which non-Aryans were forced to leave their land and the property acquired by them was redistributed to the German people. Stalin, on the other hand, sought to preserve and promote the cultural heritage of the Soviet Union by encouraging the revival of traditional Russian culture and literature.
Hitler’s main aim was to dominate Europe and take control of the entire continent as well as parts of Asia, leading to a World War II that killed millions of people. His aggressive foreign policy, together with his refusal to accept the terms of the Treaty of Versailles, resulted in Germany’s expansion of its territory across Europe. Stalin was more focused on the building of a socialist state, and saw expansion as necessary for its own security, resulting in the invasion of Poland, Finland and Romania.