Early Twentieth Century
My Interest in Early 20th Century
Ever since a Social Studies teacher ignited my interest in government, history, and politics I have been interested in the early 20th Century. That is 1900-1945. It was a period of a great geographical, political, social, and technological change in various parts of the world as well as various industries and human endeavors throughout the world. Since that period of time we have long tried to understand and deal with for World War I gave rise to World War II, and World War II gave rise to the many wars that have occurred since then. World War I and World War II also gave rise to efforts to bring us all closer together, even while individuals and groups still try to cause unrest and destruction in their quest for world superiority either because of their race or their fanatical ideology.
It was a time in which Man not only began to really study itself as the field of psychiatry, thanks to Freud, delved into the area of one’s sexual orientation. It was also a time when Man showed just how inhumanly it could deal with individuals, ethnic and racial groups deemed inferior and a danger to the greater society.
Also during this period of time, and most especially between 1930 and 1945, in the areas of government and politics it was also a time in which showed groups and individuals with fanatical, close minded ideology could rise to positions of power and cause previously unimagined death and destruction within the relatively short period of time that they are able to remain in power. At the same time it was because of these individuals and what they represented gave rise to courageous individuals who either alone or through the positions they held did what they could to not only inform the world but resist and organize others in efforts to resist these individuals and groups.
My focus in this series will cover a span of time roughly from the the turn of the century to the end of World War II. Now, much has already been written of this time and many of the more famous individuals of the time. In this series I aim to center on many of the changes that began during this and their possible affect on us today for we seem to be facing many of the same issues, and changes, that arose from this period of time. Exactly how wide spread this series will turn out is yet to be determined.
I will begin this series with the changes going on in Germany from World War I and the fall of the Weimar Republic to the rise of Adolf Hitler and the Nazi Party's march to not only conquer Europe and the world but to change it. Change the way people were seen and what they believed. Change not only politics in the world but role of government over the people that government rule to include what resistance to government authority would result in.
Now, much has been written about Hitler and his, and his Nazi Party's, rise to power in Germany. I myself have read “The Rise and Fall of the Third Reich” as well as some biographies of Adolf Hitler, along with a book about Japan’s part in World War II. To this end I will have articles about lesser known, and lesser written about individuals that had a role in this drastic change.
From the Weimar Republic to Nazi Germany
With Germany's defeat at the end of World War I, and the humiliating Treaty of Versailles they had to sign, the German people were forced to face many challenges. One of the affects of these challenges was for Germans to return to those beliefs that made them strong. For a brief period of time the Germans, under the Weimar Republic, experimented with democracy and all the liberal thinking that came along with it. Some of this liberal thinking involved a greater tolerance of homosexuals though Paragraph 175 made homosexual activity illegal. It was opposition to Paragraph 175 that helped make Germany the birthplace of the homosexual rights movement. However, like the Weimar Republic tolerance of homosexuals soon came to an end with the rise of the Nazi Party and Adolf Hitler.with their desire to punish all those that they had seen as causing their World War I.
In this area there will be an article about homosexuals during this time. I will also include an article about Magnis Hirschfeld who was an ambitious, energetic, and imaginative Jewish homosexual who not only sought the repeal of Germany’s Paragraph 175 but sought a better understanding and acceptance of sexual issues, most notably homosexuality, in just about any way he could.
I will also have an article of a homosexual military leader who was not only a member of the Nazi Party, but a close and trusted friend of Hitler, in that he was instrumental in Hitler's rise to power as he lead the Nazi Party's paramilitary Stormtroopers-Ernst Roehm. Then there will be an article about the man who not only worked for Roehm's downfall but took his place with complete authority to "purify" the German race of all "contragenics" including homosexuals- SS chief, Heinrich Himmler
The Islamic Extremist Connection to Nazi Germany
I also hope to do an article about Hajj Amin al-Husseine, a Palestinian Arab who arranged an Arab-Nazi alliance through which he not only hoped to push Hitler to enact his “Final Solution” to the Jewish question in Europe, but to later have Nazi help train Arabs and militant Islamic fundamentalists in their fight to not only make sure that Jews never accomplished their goal of a national homeland in Palestine, but to purify Islam of the modernistic thinking foreigners who, at the time had control over parts of the Arab. His legacy exists today with fundamentalist, Islamic extremists and their efforts to battle all those they see as both inferior and a danger to Islam's destiny to rule the world.with their interpretation of Islam.
Resisters and Conspirators
On the flip side, I will include a couple of articles about some of the individuals who were very much anti-Hitler and anti-Nazi. The most notable of these Pope Pius XII who some have chosen to see as “Hitler’s Pope” and accuse him of not only supporting Hitler and the Nazi but of not doing all he could to help the Jews during the Holocaust, despite all the historical documents and testimonies that show that he was anything but and that he did in fact do a great deal to save as many Jews as he could, either directly or through his position as pope of the Catholic Church.
Then there will be an article about an anti-Nazi Christian pastor, theologian who not only knew many world leaders but individuals in various Allied countries whom he could turn to, but fought the Nazification of churches in Germany to the point of establishing means by which he could influence young pastors throughout Germany- Dietrich Bonhoeffer.
Dietrich Bonhoeffer would later team up with his Jewish, lawyer brother-in-law Ernst von Dohnanjii who worked in the Ministry of Justice during the Nazi regime. While at the Ministry of Justice he accumulated documents regarding Nazi atrocities and violations of the law. It was Ernst who set up a network of resistors, especially among military leaders. It was Ernst who helped plan and execute attempts to assassinate Hitler and end his regime. Finally it was Ernst who drew Dietrich into an attempt to get Allied support in ending the war in such a manner that Germany would not be treated as they were at Versailles at the end of World War I.