banner
Sep 15, 2022
0 Views
0 0

Weimar: a fragile democratic republic

Weimar: a fragile democratic republic

The new republic, created in the midst of the great upheavals in Germany in 1919, was forced to bear the legacy of war and defeat. Why did the new government in Germany face so many problems after the Great War?

To the majority of the population, this new government did not seem quite legitimate, born of the revolution. He was made responsible for the surrender. The inexplicable surrender and defeat of Germany in the Great War. While the military avoided responsibility for the catastrophic end of the war.

Between 1919 and 1923, the new republic was troubled by a series of economic and political crises. She was tormented by internal, extremist terror. There were many murders, almost always killings of left-wing politicians or those associated with the founding of this new republic, by right-wing terrorists.

One of the things that the new democratic regime in Germany did not do was to purge the old judiciary and the high command of the army. This failure to clean up the judiciary proved to be very important for the fate of the Weimar Republic.

Instability after the Great War

For the economy to recover and for democracy to have a chance to establish itself.  Therefore, Germany could not afford to shrink its economy.  For example, suffer from unemployment.  Since the economy has moved from wartime to peacetime.

In part, the new Republican authorities did not believe they could afford more instability after the Great War. The German population, which had endured hardship and millions of victims during the war, now faced what they considered a draconian treaty. The Allies were ready to invade Germany if the Germans did not sign the treaty at Versailles.

The government knew that order had to be restored. For the economy to recover and for democracy to have a chance to establish itself. Therefore, Germany could not afford to shrink its economy. For example, suffer from unemployment. Since the economy has moved from wartime to peacetime.

Army, judiciary and communists

The new government saw its greatest enemy not in the revolution. In 1919 – 1920. the social democrats found that the greatest threat came from the radical left. The Social Democratic Party, which broke away during the war. This group formed the Communist Party of Germany in early 1919.

Therefore, the new government needed to rely on the army to maintain order. And he needed a stable judicial system. As a consequence, in addition to the problems that were caused by political assassinations. Often, right-wing thugs who were caught and convicted seemed to get support from the old judiciary.

The new government saw its greatest enemy not in the revolution.  In 1919 - 1920.  the social democrats found that the greatest threat came from the radical left.  The Social Democratic Party, which broke away during the war.  This group formed the Communist Party of Germany in early 1919.

Especially if the victim belonged to a radical leftist movement. Or was someone who was involved with the armistice, the surrender, or the founding of this new democratic German state.

Revolutions in the Weimar Republic

The new republic was also plagued by coups from the left and right. The instability was not limited to political assassinations. But between 1919 and 1924, attempts were made to overthrow this very fragile democratic state by radicals on the left and right.

In January 1919, in Berlin, the Communists revolted to prevent elections for a constituent assembly to draft a constitution. They were brutally suppressed by the police and the army.

In 1920, a conservative military officer stationed on the eastern front attempted to overthrow the government and restore the monarchy. This attempt was thwarted by the announcement of a general strike. There was also a communist uprising in the Ruhr in 1920, which was put down by the army.

In 1923, the Rhenish separatist movement arose when attempts were made to create an independent state of the Rhineland. The consequence of which was the invasion of the French and Belgians in the Rhineland. The French desperately wanted to see the creation of a new Republic of the Rhine in order to weaken the German state.

There was a communist uprising in Hamburg in October.  And then, most significantly, in November 1923, there was an uprising of the German Workers' Party in Munich.  which was named "beer coup".

There was a communist uprising in Hamburg in October. And then, most significantly, in November 1923, there was an uprising of the German Workers’ Party in Munich. Which has received the name “Beer coup”.

Cabinet of instability in the Weimar Republic

After the 1920 elections, the first real elections for a new parliament, no group was able to win a majority. This was the result of a very progressive democratic idea that all parties should have access to representation.

This meant that every splinter group, every lobby, would have a chance of winning a seat in parliament. And this made it very difficult to form a coalition.

In this situation, there were nine different cabinet changes between 1919 and 1923. And all parties, as a rule, were minority coalition governments.

This meant that in the parliament itself, in the Reichstag, there really was no stable majority for them.

It was in this atmosphere of post-war political and social uncertainty and radicalism that the German Workers' Party in Munich was founded.  It was founded by Anton Drexler, who chaired a sort of Executive Committee.

Anton Drexler and the rise of the DAP

It was in this atmosphere of post-war political and social uncertainty and radicalism that the German Workers’ Party in Munich was founded. It was founded by Anton Drexler, who chaired a sort of Executive Committee.

DAP – Deutsche Arbeiterpartei, as the party was called, was actually a sort of debating society. He held his meetings in a beer hall in Munich.

In 1919, Drexler founded this kind of quasi-party. It was just a group of guys who got together to complain about the new German government and the revolution.

It wasn’t until he decided to hold one of these meetings that he had to register. The supervisory authority, in this case, was the German army, which was still imposing martial law in Munich.

It was to this meeting that the army sent a young corporal named Adolf Hitler. Which at that time was in Munich. As a result, Hitler went to the rally and listened to the speech. He was quickly seduced by Drexler’s radical beliefs. He was impressed by this. He soon joined the DAP and his political career began.

Admiring the young corporal's oratorical skills, Drexler was the man who brought Hitler into the party.  His oratory skills soon made him an active and popular member of the party.  So, in February 1921, the party was transformed into what we now know as the Nationalsozialistische Deutsche Arbeiterpartei (NSDAP).  And Hitler was appointed its chairman.

The man who created Hitler

Admiring the young corporal’s oratorical skills, Drexler was the man who brought Hitler into the party. His oratory skills soon made him an active and popular member of the party. So, in February 1921, the party was transformed into what we now know as the Nationalsozialistische Deutsche Arbeiterpartei (NSDAP). And Hitler was appointed its chairman.

The rest, as they say, is history. Hitler stages a failed coup d’état. Known in history as the “Beer putsch”. Hitler is accused of high treason and given five years in Landsberg prison. It is here, in conclusion, that he writes Mein Kampf.

A few years later, after becoming chancellor, in 1933, he promotes a law that would make Hitler combine the titles of chancellor and president. And becomes Fuhrer in 1934. Marking the first steps towards the Second World War.

Article Categories:
Interesting
banner

Leave a Reply