Adolf Hitler’s annexation of Austria in 1938 was a major event in world history; it marked the beginning of the Second World War. Despite the immense opposition to this move, many idealistic supporters of the Nazi party were willing to endorse it. What were the reasons behind such endorsement? And what were the consequences of Hitler’s annexation of Austria?
Reasons Behind Nazi Supporters’ Endorsement
The Nazi party had been gaining momentum since its establishment in 1920. Hitler was seen as an idealistic leader who was devoted to the cause of German nationalism. His annexation of Austria was seen as a way of unifying the German people and restoring Germany’s lost glory. Moreover, many supporters of the Nazi party believed that Hitler was a man of action and that his bold move would bring Germany out of its economic crisis.
Another reason why Nazi supporters endorsed Hitler’s annexation of Austria was because of the Nazi ideology of racial superiority. The Nazi party believed that Germany was the superior race and this belief was further strengthened by the annexation of Austria. It was seen as a way of expanding the German race and bringing more people under the Nazi banner.
Consequences of Hitler’s Annexation of Austria
The consequences of Hitler’s annexation of Austria were far-reaching. The move was seen as a major violation of international law and it resulted in the condemnation of the Nazi party by other countries. This led to increased tensions between Germany and other countries and ultimately led to the outbreak of the Second World War.
The annexation of Austria also had serious implications for Austria itself. The country was annexed with little resistance and the people of Austria were subjected to oppressive Nazi rule. This led to a decline in the quality of life in Austria and the country was eventually annexed by Germany in 1941.
Hitler’s annexation of Austria was a major event in world history and it had serious consequences for both Germany and Austria. While many idealistic supporters of the Nazi party were willing to endorse the move, it was ultimately a violation of international law and it led to the outbreak of the Second World War.
Idealistic supporters of the Nazi Party were willing to endorse Adolf Hitler’s annexation of Austria during the late 1930s because of the political and economic opportunities that the plan promised. This highly controversial move, referred to as the Anschluss, was one of Hitler’s first steps towards a ‘Greater German Reich’ and motivated the Nazis’ dream of restoring Germany’s former glory.
The annexation of Austria was seen as a crucial step in the Nazi ideology of uniting all German speakers into a single homeland and so it was supported by those who believed in the vision of a strong and unified Germany. By absorbing Austria, the Nazis looked to not only increase the country’s population from 61 million to 85 million, but also the country’s economic resources including natural resources, industrial and naval production, and agricultural land.
The Nazi Party also promised a number of political benefits with its annexation of Austria, particularly the closure of the ‘southern flank’ of Germany. The political leader of Austria, Kurt von Schleicher, had threatened an alliance with Czechoslovakia and Poland, creating a hostile force towards Germany’s western border. Hence, eliminating his leadership from Austria was seen as essential in order to provide stability to the region.
The Nazi Party also promised an improved stance in foreign affairs, as this annexation was widely seen as a way of opening up agreements with Italy, Hungary and other countries which had pro-German sympathies.
It was therefore no wonder that the Nazi Party’s idealistic supporters saw the annexation of Austria as a beneficial move for Germany. They saw the potential of the country’s growth and believed it could restore German national pride. The Nazi’s promise of political and economic advantages convinced idealistic supporters to endorse the Anschluss and view it as a positive step towards realizing the Nazi vision of a strong and united Germany.