Tag Archives: dictatorship

Saddam Hussein

The Rise of Saddam Hussein

This revision podcast is aimed at GCSE and IGCSE History students, although AS and IB students may find it a helpful introduction to events in the Gulf in the later 20th Century.  This episode focuses on the factors that allowed Saddam Hussein to come to power in Iraq in 1979.

The podcast breaks Saddam’s rise to power into three key areas: his dominance of the Ba’ath Party, a series of social and economic policies that benefited the vast majority of Iraqis, and a ruthless system of terror and repression that dealt with anyone who dared to oppose him.

The revision guide aims to give clear examples for each of these factors, and explain how each of them contributed to Saddam’s rise to power.

     

Saddam Hussein

Saddam Hussein’s Rule of Iraq

This revision podcast is relevant to both GCSE and IGCSE History students, although AS and IB students may find it a helpful introduction to events in the Gulf in the later 20th Century.  This episode aims explain the factors that allowed Saddam Hussein to maintain his rule of Iraq after he became President in 1979.

The podcast breaks Saddam’s rule into three key areas: his control of the Ba’ath party, his use of repression and violence against his enemies, and his use of economic and social policy alongside propaganda to maintain the support of the population.

The revision guide aims to give clear examples for each of these factors, and explain how each of them contributed to Saddam remaining in power for a quarter of a century.

     

Hindenburg and Hitler as Chancellor

The Rise of Hitler 1929-1934 podcast

This revision podcast is relevant to both GCSE and IGCSE History students studying Nazi Germany. It is the second of two podcasts that present an explanation of the range of factors that contributed to the rise of Hitler. It goes into more detail than the briefer podcast that covers the entire 1919-1934 period. You could also download the Rise of Hitler Revision PowerPoint which complements the two podcasts.

The podcast is the second of two that explore how Hitler came to power. This episode covers the period from the Wall Street Crash to Hitler’s self-appointment of the Fuhrer of Germany in 1934. Specific attention is given to:

* The effects of the Great Depression on Germany
* The Presidential election campaign of 1932
* The appointment of Hitler as Chancellor in 1933
* The Reichstag Fire and the Enabling Act
* The Night of the Long Knives
* The death of President Hindenburg

The revision guide aims to give clear examples for each of these factors, and explains how you might approach a question on them in the exam.

          

Hitler becomes Fuhrer

How Hitler became Führer after Hindenburg’s death

On the 2nd August 1934, the 86 year old German Reichspräsident Paul von Hindenburg died of lung cancer and Adolf Hitler became both the Führer and Reich Chancellor of the German People.

The move effectively merged the offices of both the President and Chancellor into one role, and therefore completed what the Nazis referred to as Gleichschaltung (or “Co-ordination”) by establishing Hitler as both Germany’s head of state and head of government.

Interfering with the post of President was illegal under the terms of the 1933 Enabling Act, and although Hitler merging the two positions removed any political checks and balances of his personal domination of Germany, a plebiscite held 17 days later on the 19th August saw an enormous 90% of people approving of the change.

Hitler’s assumption of the role of Führer also allowed the Nazi Party to more actively pursue its promotion of the ideology of Führerprinzip. This stated that Hitler possessed absolute control over the German government. Supported by a propaganda machine that relentlessly pushed the slogan Ein Volk, ein Reich, ein Führer – which translates as “One People, One Empire, One Leader” – the Führerprinzip also confirmed the Nazi Party’s complete control over every element of German society. This ranged from local government to factories and even to the management and control schools, although in terms of government it sometimes meant that officials were reluctant to make decisions without Hitler’s personal input or approval. It was also used by Nazi war criminals at the Nuremberg Trials to argue that they were not guilty since they were only following orders.

The SS

The foundation of the SS: an overview

The SS was established on the orders of Adolf Hitler to act as his personal bodyguard. He had been released from prison the previous December, having been found guilty of treason following the failed Munich Putsch, and was keen to ensure his safety when attending party functions and events.

The SS was technically a division of the longer-established SA, but the group’s loyalty to Hitler meant that over time it grew to be the dominant organisation. This came about under the leadership of Heinrich Himmler, who was appointed Reichsfuhrer-SS in January 1929. He transformed the SS from a small bodyguard of less than 300 members into a private army containing over 50,000 men by the time Hitler became Chancellor of Germany in January 1933.

Membership of the SS was reserved for those men who would loyally and unquestioningly serve Hitler and the Nazi Party, and who met the SS’s strict racial policy. Through racial selection of both SS members and their spouses, the Nazis hoped to create an ‘elite’ community of people with an ‘Aryan-Nordic bloodline’.

The Night of the Long Knives in June 1934 removed any remaining authority the SA once had over the SS. A month later Hitler formally separated the two organisations, meaning that the SS became answerable to him alone. As the organisation grew even further under the Nazi dictatorship, separate SS subdivisions were established within a sprawling bureaucracy.

By the end of the Second World War the SS had responsibilities that stretched from policing and the collection of intelligence to running Nazi concentration and death camps.