Heesemail = SigmaChi25publish = yessubject = World CivIItitle = Hitler’s Weltanschauung (World View)In the early quarter of the twentieth century, a young man wasbeginning to fill his mind with ideas of a unification of all Germanic countries. That young man was Adolf Hitler, and what he learned in his youth would surfaceagain as he struggled to become the leader of this movement. Hitler formedviews of countries and even certain cities early in his life, those views oftenaffecting his dictation of foreign policy as he grew older. What was Hitler’sview of the world before the Nazi Party came to power? Based in large parton incidents occurring in his boyhood, Hitler’s view included the belief thatJews should be eliminated, and that European countries were merely pawns forhim to use in his game of world dominion.
Adolf Hitler grew up the son ofa respectable imperial customhouse official, who refused to let his son dowhat he was most interested in–art. Hitler never excelled in school, andtook interest only in art, gymnastics and a casual interest in geography andhistory due to a liking he had taken to his teacher. It was his history teacherwho would fill Adolf’s mind with a simple thought: ?The day will come, thatall of us, of German descent, will once more belong to one mighty Teutonicnation that will stretch from the Mediterranean to the Baltic, just like theEmpire of the Middle Ages, and that will stand supreme among the peoples ofthis earth. ?Already the young Adolf could envision himself in such a position.
Much of the ideology that Adolf Hitler used was not original by any means. There were many thinkers and writers who laid the groundwork for what wouldbecome not just Hitler’s, but the Nazi Party’s Weltanschauung (world view). Three primary writers were Dietrich Eckart, editor of a harshly anti-Semiticperiodical, Auf gut deutsch (Agd), Alfred Rosenberg, a Baltic German and contributorto Agd, and Gottfried Feder, an opponent of finance capitalism. These threemen molded the political outlook of the German Worker’s Party before Hitlerencountered it in 1919, and would become quite influential in Adolf’s ideology. Rosenberg contributed largely to Hitler’s view of the Jews on an internationalperspective, suggesting the existence of a Jewish conspiracy to overthrow establishednation-states on a worldwide scale. In 1924, Hitler proclaimed that he haddeparted from Vienna as an absolute anti-Semitic, a deadly enemy of the wholeMarxist outlook, and as a Pan-German in his political persuasion.
The Pan-Germanmovement was dedicated to achieving the defense and fortification of the GermanVolk (people) everywhere in the world. The elimination of the Jews wasbut one item on Hitler’s agenda, however. Hitler wanted to do away with theVersailles Treaty which he saw as criminal. He also believed that Germanyshould not ally itself with any other nation, except perhaps Italy and England.
Italy, because of its Fascist regime under Mussolini, and England, becauseit could be considered a Nordic region. While he would go on to ally himselfwith Italy, his views of these two nations would change drastically later. As for other European nations, Hitler’s idea of expansionism laid the groundworkfor his relations with them. Lebensraum or living-space, which Hitler mentionedin his book Mein Kampf, had been a key concept for German National Socialists.
It was an old concept, not inconsistent with beliefs held since the middleages. Hitler believed that an increase in his country’s living-space wouldeffectively improve the health and well-being of his Volk. As Hitler statedin his Secret Book: ?A healthy foreign policy therefore will always keepthe winning of the basis of a people’s sustenance immovably in sight as itsultimate goal. ? Hitler was very hostile towards France and saw the Frenchas a hereditary enemy that was always looking for a chance to annex the leftbank of the Rhine so as to have a ?natural? frontier with Germany.
Hitlerwas ready to support a war against France at any time and any cost. Englandwas portrayed as one of Germany’s absolute enemies, even though Hitler hadconsidered making an alliance at one point. Hitler thought that England hadbeen the Weltmacht, or world power for too long and was not a worthy ally becausethey assisted the Jewish cause and had allowed Jews to hold influential positionswithin the state. Hitler also said that the British people had a reason tobe proud though, because even though they were only a people of a few million,they ruled practically 1/5 of the earth. This, Hitler claimed, had to do withracial purity, British national feeling, and its ability to turn conqueredenemies into friends. He was especially impressed with the British idea that?might makes right.
? In contrast, Russia was not considered an absoluteenemy of Germany, but was rather an enemy because of unfortunate situationson their part. Hitler maintained that war had never really been necessarybetween Russia and Germany, that there was no real conflict of interests. He also maintained that Russia had become Germany’s enemy only because of Austriaand the failure to renew Bismarck’s Reinsurance Treaty with the Russians. Although Hitler did not see Russia as an absolute enemy, he did despise theRussians, whom he saw as inferior people because of their Slavic origins.
Hitler saw the government run by Jewish capitalists as well, which only madehim despise them more. Italy was in the same category as Russia in Hitler’sview. He again blamed poor relations on the Austrians. Hitler’s main reasonfor an alliance with Italy would be to use it to destroy the Versailles Treaty. His desire to ?liberate? Germans living in South Tyrol from Italian rule didnot do much for Italo-German relations.
On the other hand, Italy was concernedabout an alliance with Germany because of the possibility of a German-AustrianAnschluss. There was a contradiction between Hitler’s suggestion of an Italo-Germanalliance and his Grossdeutsch ambitions for Germany. America, like Franceand England, was seen as Germany’s absolute enemy because of its oppositionto Germany’s becoming a major world power. Hitler theorized that England opposedthis for fear of losing its own stand in the world powers, France because itwanted to settle old scores, and America in order to protect investments inthe Entente nations. Japan did not fit into a category in Hitler’s view,because he felt that there was no conflict of interests if Japan wanted tokeep the whites out of Asia. It is unclear whether Hitler was saving the possibilityof an alliance with Japan later, or if he had racial qualms concerning an alliancewith a non-white nation.
Either way, Japan did not play an extensive rolein Hitler’s view of the world in the pre-war period, although Hitler had insistedthat an alliance with Japan could help lead Germany ?into a new future. ? Hitlersaw the Japanese in a similar light as the Germans; hard-working, martiallyaware, racially unspoiled and with little living space. While he showedrestraint in advocating an alliance, Hitler recognized the strategic valueof Japan on the Russian front. Such was the outlook of Hitler in the yearsbefore power. His emerging Weltanschauung was due to the ingestion of Pan-Germanpropaganda in his youth.
His ideas of Lebensraum were less economic in nature,but rather slogans of Pan-German coinage. His entire foreign policy was basedupon his beliefs and views of the country in question, and what he could manipulateout of that country. I do not believe that Hitler had uncontested world dominionin mind before his party came into power. His views and beliefs in regardsto other countries, however, certainly show that his thoughts were leaningin that direction.
One man’s outlook would soon become a nation’s drivingforce. BibliographyBormann, Martin. Collector. Hitler’s SecretConversations.
Introduction: H. R. Trevor-Roper. Trans.
Norman Cameron andR. H. Stevens. New York: Farrar, Straus, and Young, 1953. de Roussy deSales, Raoul, ed.
Adolf Hitler: My New Order. Introduction: Raymond Gram Swing. New York: Reynal and Hitchcock, 1941. Gilbert, Felix. Hitler Directs HisWar.
New York: Oxford University Press, 1950. Hillgruber, A. , ?England’sPlace in Hitler’s Plans for World Dominion,? The Journal of Contemporary History9 (January 1974): 5-22. Robertson, E.
M. Hitler’s Pre-War Policy and MilitaryPlans 1933-1939. New York: The Citadel Press, 1963. Stoakes, Geoffrey.
Hitler and the Quest for World Dominion. Hamburg: Berg Publishers, Ltd. , 1986. Taylor,Telford. Compiler. Hitler’s Secret Book.
Introduction: Telford Taylor. Trans. Salvator Attanasio. New York: Grove Press, Inc. , 1961.
van Loon, HendrikW. Our Battle. New York: Simon and Schuster, 1938. Waddington, G. T. , ?Hassgegner:German Views of Great Britain in the Later 1930s,? History: The Journal ofthe Historical Association 88 (January 1996): 22-39.
OUTLINEI. Hitler’sWeltanschauungA. Introduction: In the early quarter of the 20th century,a young man was beginning to fill his mind with ideas of a unification of allGermanic countries. That young man was Adolf Hitler, and what he learned inhis youth would surface again as he struggled to become the leader of thismovement.
Hitler formed views of countries and even certain cities early inhis life, those views often affecting his dictation of foreign policy as hegrew older. What was Hitler’s view of the world before the Nazi Party cameto power? Based in large part on incidents occurring in his boyhood, Hitler’sview included the belief that Jews should be eliminated, and that Europeancountries were merely pawns for him to use in his game of world dominion. B. Body1.
Background Information(a) Adolf growing up, and influences(b)First idea for new German Empire2. Groundwork for Ideology(a)Prior thinkersi. Rosenberg, Feder, and Eckart(b) The Pan-Germanmovement3. Basic Ideas of Hitler(a) Elimination of Jews(b)Versailles Treaty(c) Alliances(d) Expansionism (Lebensraum)4. Hitler’s View of Major Powers in Europe, and America(a) France(b)England(c) Russia(d) Italy(e) America(f) JapanC.
Conclusion1. Weltanschauung due to Pan-German propaganda2. ForeignPolicy3. World Dominion