Stalin Vs Hitler Essay Research Paper Lewis

Stalin Vs. Hitler Essay, Research Paper

Lewis Butler

World History

Stalin vs. Hitler: How they gained power

There were two men who were on opposing sides, yet had many traits

that made them much alike. One of these men was someone who s name is

instantly recognizable to almost anyone today, Adolf Hitler. The other man was a

major player in world history as well, but his name is not so infamous, Joseph

Stalin. These men were each triumphant in their rise to power in their countries

and they were very comparable in the ways that they succeeded. Their success

was mostly attributed to their new ideas and, especially in Hitler s case, their

politics. Although the two hated each other, the two leaders were similar in many


Hitler and Stalin each rose to positions of high power, and there were

three main reasons that they both were able to do this. Both men used

propaganda, each was immoral, and they both had the ambition to make their

countries the most powerful in the world.

Stalin and Hitler both used their words to twist and manipulate the minds

of people into believing that what they were saying was the absolute truth. Using

this power, they were able to get people to do nearly anything for them. Since

each of their countries were still trying to recover from World War I, they desired

to restore the power and glory back to their countries. The names Adolf Hitler

and Joseph Stalin are synonymous with the word propaganda. The word

propaganda means the spreading of ideas to further or damage a cause; also

the ideas or allegations spread for a purpose. Hitler and Stalin each used

propaganda as their tool to further their ideas and help them gain the backing of

the people in their countries. The form of propaganda that Hitler used was his

words. Hitler made a great number of speeches, but one speech that became

very famous was his speech at his trial for treason. In this speech he gave his

views and opinions on the events preceding the trial. Here is an excerpt from

this speech: …I aimed from the first to…become the destroyer of Marxism…The

army that we are building grows more from day to day, from hour to hour.

Gentlemen, not you who will be the ones that deliver the verdict over us, but that

verdict will be given by the eternal judgment of history, which will speak out

against the accusation that has been made against us…That court will judge

us…as Germans [who] wanted only the best for their people and their

Fatherland, who fought and were willing to die. You might just as well find us

guilty a thousand times, but the goddess of the eternal court of history will smile

and tear up the motions of the states attorney and the judgment of this court: for

she finds us not guilty. After Hitler gave this speech, the court was sympathetic

towards him, and he was sentenced to only five years in prison for his crime.

After nine months of his sentence had been served, he was granted parole. He

was then able to gain Nazi party control and lure enough supporters to his

cause. Hitler even had his own minister of propaganda when he became leader

of the Germany. Joseph Stalin was not quite as blatantly obvious with his uses

of propaganda. One example of propaganda Stalin used can be found in his

speech to the Fifteenth Congress in 1927. Here is an excerpt from this speech:

Evidently, the opposition prefers to be outside the party. Well, let it be outside

the party. There is nothing terrible, or exceptional, or surprising in the fact that

they prefer to be outside the party, that they are cutting themselves off from the

party. If you study the history of our party, you will find that always, at certain

serious turns taken by our party, a certain section of the old leaders fell out of

the cart of the Bolshevik party and made room for newer members. A turn is a

serious thing, comrades. A turn is dangerous for those who do not sit firmly in

the party cart. Not everybody can keep his balance when a turn is made. You

turn the cart – and on looking back, you find that someone has fallen out. After

Stalin said this, an immediate applause was heard. Stalin was telling people

what they wanted to hear. This speech helped to further his cause by gaining

support from the people, and by justifying why Trotsky was not the choice for

leader. Stalin was also demonstrating with this speech that he was taking people

in the right direction. Everyone who became a supporter of him would be getting

into the right cart, and would be heading in the right direction; at least what he

believed to be the right direction. Hitler and Stalin did not limit themselves only

to spoken propaganda, but would use many forms of it. One form of propaganda

that they used was through photographs. These photographs promoted their

nice personality. In these photos they would be depicted as being a hero. They

would usually be helping poor families, or be holding a small child. It was

through the use of these photos that they became appealing to the general

public. These photos would give one the idea that they are caring, loving, and

just completely concerned for the well-being of the people. The use of these

photos was a big contributor to the success of both men. Since Hitler and Stalin

were able to manipulate people with their propaganda, they could convince

people of practically anything. Both would do whatever they thought was

necessary to further their cause, with no remorse about what they had done.

In 1922 Lenin, the leader of the communist party, had a stroke. Over time

his condition got worse and he became less involved in the party’s affairs. When

Lenin died in January of 1924, it left two men in contention for the party’s

leadership. These two men were Joseph Stalin and Leon Trotsky. The men had

opposing ideas on how the party should be run. Stalin was a more aggressive

candidate, and therefore had one of his supporters kill Trotsky. This happened

after Trotsky was exiled, but while in exile Trotsky continued to preach world

revolution. Stalin sent one of his agents to kill Trotsky, who was in exile in

Mexico. Stalin felt that if he eliminated his only threat, it would result in less

opposition to his ideas. This assured Stalin full control over the communist party.

Hitler was another example of an immoral person. He demonstrated this

after he got into power with the holocaust; but he did not foreshadow his

immorality much before he got into power. One incidence of his immorality was

when he killed virtually all of his opposition. The first major victim of the Nazis

was the powerful German Trade Union movement. It was a possible breeding

ground for Socialism and Communism, and therefore, was possible opposition to

Hitler. On May 2, 1933, many Trade Union leaders were arrested and literally

beaten up. Their offices were looted and their funds and property seized. A

Nazi-led “labor front” was established to control the workers and ensure peace

in the factories and workshops. A week after the destruction of the Trade

Unions, the Social Democratic Party suffered a similar fate; soon to be followed

by the Communists. All of their property, possessions, and funds were seized

and both parties were banned. The Center Party, which had supported Hitler in

return for vague promises, collapsed in July of 1933, along with the few other

parties still remaining. After Hitler became Chancellor, he passed a law that

prohibited there being any other party in Germany other than the Nazis. By

doing all of these things, he gave us a glimpse of what he was going to be like

when he got into more power.

Each of their countries had suffered great losses in World War I and were

still trying to recover when the men came into power. Restoring the power back

to their countries was of great importance to both men. After World War I,

Russia had around 9,150,000 casualties and Germany had about 7,143,000

casualties. These losses were immense. Stalin believed that if he forced

industrialization upon Russia, it would help the country to rebuild. Collective

farms were one of Stalin’s plans. One of Stalin s ideas about socialism and its

spread and protection is expressed in this excerpt from one of his speeches:

Engel’s general formula about the destiny of the Socialist state in general

cannot be extended to the partial and specific case of the victory of socialism in

one country only, a country that is surrounded by a capitalist world, is subject to

the menace of foreign military attack, cannot therefore abstract itself from the

international situation, and must have at its disposal a well-trained army,

well-organized punitive organs, and a strong intelligence service. Consequently,

must have its own state, strong enough to defend the conquests of Socialism

from foreign attack. This shows that Stalin’s aspiration was to make his country

strong, and that he definitely had some ideas of just how to go about it.

Hitler’s Germany had a lot to recover from as well. Hitler had plans for

Germanic unity and German living space. German unity meant the gathering

together of all Germans in Europe, one people into one empire, ruled by one

leader . This involved people living in Austria, Czechoslovakia, Danzig, Memel

and other isolated pockets as well. Germany did not have enough farmland to

feed it s population or enough raw materials to supply it s factories. New lands to

the east would then have to be taken over. Hitler intended to destroy the power

of France forever. He hoped to take Great Britain into partnership after settling

the question of the former German colonies. This demonstrates that Hitler

aspired to make Germany strong, powerful, and feared. He wanted to reunite the

German people.


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