This sample essay on Hitler’s Weaknesses reveals arguments and important aspects of this topic. Read this essay’s introduction, body paragraphs and the conclusion below.
Hitler was always seen as a very strong dictator but he did have several weaknesses as a leader. For instance it was widely known that Hitler was lazy and spent much of the day sleeping and eating. Historical sources inform us that he wasn’t very interested in policy discussions. Frequently far away from Berlin, spent a lot of time in his villa, the Berghof.
Hitler also encouraged others to make decisions on his behalf by letting them ‘interpret’ his original details.
On some occasions it was fair to go as far as saying that Hitler was unwilling to make decisions. Mommsen said; Hitler was unwilling to take decisions, frequently uncertain, exclusively concerned with upholding his prestige and personal authority, influenced in the strongest fashion by his current followers, in some respects a weak dictator.
‘ Hitler’s style of control is known as ‘polycratic’ meaning that there were many different bodies. If a problem emerged, then Hitler would often just set up a new body. Also, Hitler may have made some long standing Nazis a bit disappointed since they thought that he would simply promote them to high ranking positions such as civil servants.
However, Hitler often kept the old Weimar civil servants. Hitler saw loyalty in personal not institutional terms; this is why he did not mind the leading Nazis such as Goering or Goebbels building up their own personal power because he always thought inevitably they would always be loyal to him.
He like the quarrels they had amongst themselves because Hitler was a strong believer in ‘survival of the fittest. ‘ Also many people would argue that the method of control could be described as ‘chaotic.
This can be interpreted as showing Hitler as a weak dictator because there was a major ‘overlapping’ of bodies which meant that it was very unclear who had the responsibility of making certain sectors work. The confusion seemed to be caused by the nature of Hitler’s leadership, i. e. everyone relying on the leader. The fact that there wasn’t a real power structure made things a lot less efficient. My final words on the subject of Hitler’s weaknesses are as follows: Many of Hitler’s ideas were not very rational. He was an opportunist who wanted to constantly increase his own personal power.
Hitler did not have much effective opposition in the Third Reich; he was cautious of all his possible opponents but was not completely able to dictate proceedings. All the confusion simply arose from the nature of Hitler’s leadership and was certainly not deliberate policy. Also completely unrelated events and decisions such as the Holocaust can be used to examine Hitler and his decision-making, for example many historians such as Ian Kershaw believe that ideas such as the mass extermination of Jews developed from the mass radicalisation within the Nazi regime and the outside influence of events such as the World war.
Finally all the confusion due to his leadership was not planned. It was not a deliberate policy. However, Hitler did have many strengths and qualities of a strong dictator. For example his methods of consolidating his power were very effective and minimised future opposition. He inflicted horror and fear over potentially rebellious characters, and killed his opponents such as Ernst Rohm. Hitler was also a good orator and therefore could easily persuade ordinary German people to agree with his views. Also he seemed to have all the answers to Germany’s problems.
He solved the economic problem and almost created full employment. He seemed to have something to offer every single German. Also looking at sources around the time, admittedly they may be fixed or altered such as the many plebiscites, where the Nazis always seemed to achieve an overwhelming majority landslide victory. This can be used as evidence of Hitler’s popularity and therefore possibly his power as a dictator. Also simply the fact that Hitler dominated Germany from 1933 to 1945 shows that he was a strong dictator.
Also, the new way in which laws were passed, Hitler would state his wishes or maybe even simply his officials’ interpretations would serve as laws. Hitler’s power and strength as a dictator was based on his unique relationship with the German people. ‘His will was absolute because it was the will of the people. ‘ This is crucial evidence because that statement is very strong and shows just the sheer amount of power Hitler has and he is a very strong dictator who has complete power. There were no constitutional restraints on him.
After so many years of such weak dictatorship, many Germans desired a strong leader, a Messiah. Helped by successful policies and the super effective propaganda machine in Goebbels Hitler achieved the Messiah type image throughout the Third Reich known as the ‘Hitler myth. ‘ Also, there is the issue of decision-making in Germany. Many people claim that because Hitler did not really get involved in decision-making and was often unwilling to make decisions that he was a weak dictator.
However, it can be argued that because he didn’t have to make any decisions this can be reflective of just how powerful he was and just how much of a strong dictator he was since he never even had to make any decisions. The Fuhrer system meant that there was no need for a formal power or decision-making structure; Hitler’s will was law. Rich said; ‘The point cannot be stressed too strongly; Hitler was master in the Third Reich. ‘ Bracher agreed with this stating; ‘The omnipotent power of the Fuhrer, abrogating (breaking) all state and legal norms and sanctioning (authorising) all deeds, was basic law of the Third Reich.
All those who believe that Hitler was a strong dictator would argue so because of the following ideas; Hitler had clear aims especially those associated with anti-Semitism, anti-Bolshevism and Lebensraum. Hitler had extreme amounts of power and was able to apply his aims successfully. Hitler aimed to eradicate the Jews and due to his strength as a dictator was eventually able to do so. Finally Nazism can be seen as ‘Hitlerism’ because it was totally dependent on Hitler, his decisions, his power and his views.
All the other factors that seem to make us believe that Hitler was a strong dictator are stated as follows: Hitler is the key activator of all the successes within the Nazi party. Most of the Nazi policies are reflective of Hitler’s overall vision. And crucially there is no effective opposition to his will. My final conclusion on whether Hitler was a strong dictator or a weak dictator is as follows. Even though Hitler was often uninvolved in decision-making and that this could be seen as a factor for him being a weak dictator.
But at the same time it can exemplify his immense power. To maintain the figure of him being an absolute dictator he could not be seen dealing with small irrelevant arguments between lower-ranking party members. For most of the time his subordinates competed with one another to ‘work towards the Fuhrer. ‘ Whenever Hitler did intervene he was completely unchallenged. Thus with this factor and the others stated previously I believe that Hitler was a strong dictator who at times was seen as weak because of his ineffectiveness and unwillingness to deal with all party issues.