Adolf Hitler (German: [ˈadɔlf ˈhɪtlɐ] ( listen); 20 April 1889 – 30 April 1945) was an Austrian-born German politician and the leader of the National Socialist German Workers Party (German:Nationalsozialistische Deutsche Arbeiterpartei, abbreviated NSDAP, commonly referred to as the Nazi Party). He was Chancellor of Germany from 1933 to 1945, and head of state (as Führer und Reichskanzler) from1934 to 1945. Hitler is most commonly associated with the rise of fascism in Europe, World War II, and the Holocaust.
A decorated veteran of World War I, Hitler joined the precursor of the NaziParty (DAP) in 1919, and became leader of the NSDAP in 1921. In 1923 Hitler attempted a coup d'état, known as the Beer Hall Putsch, at the Bürgerbräukeller beer hall in Munich. The failed coup resultedin Hitler's imprisonment, during which time he wrote his memoir, Mein Kampf (My Struggle). After his release in 1924, Hitler gained support by promoting Pan-Germanism, antisemitism, and anti-communismwith charismatic oratory and propaganda. He was appointed chancellor in 1933 and transformed the Weimar Republic into the Third Reich, a single-party dictatorship based on the totalitarian andautocratic ideology of Nazism.
Hitler's avowed aim was to establish a New Order of absolute Nazi German hegemony in continental Europe. His foreign and domestic policies had the goal of seizing Lebensraum(living space) for the Germanic people. This included the rearmament of Germany, resulting in the invasion of Poland by the Wehrmacht in September 1939, leading to the outbreak of World War II inEurope.
Under Hitler's direction, German forces and their European allies at one point occupied most of Europe and North Africa. These gains were reversed in 1945 when the Allied armies defeatedthe German army. Hitler's racially motivated policies resulted in the systematic annihilation of as many as 17 million civilians, including an estimated six million Jews targeted in the Holocaust...
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