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The Use of Rhetoric by Adolf Hitler

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Throughout history, the question of “Does the end ever justify the means?” can be brought up and argued against many different political situations and standpoints, such as the current situations with Nelson Mandela and Edward Snowden. The most popular, and most likely argued, situation is Adolf Hitler’s siege for power in Germany. Many argue that he had purely blamed the Jewish Community due to them being rich in a time of poverty, while others believed he had just reasons for blaming them (American-Israeli Cooperative Enterprise). Hitler’s “end” did not truly justify the “means.” This standpoint can be brought up in the facts that are displayed throughout the whole of World War II. While it is believed that he did not truly justify his reason for killing the large mass of people, he was able to do so by the use of propaganda and certain forms of rhetoric. These can all be expressed through his speeches. The first speech that Adolf Hitler began to use rhetoric was his speech at Salzburg in August of 1920. This speech was the first of many (Hitler and Nazis, Statements Concerning Jews and Judaism). The cultural influences of Adolf Hitler began with his experiences with the Jewish Community. He had believed that due to them being heavily unaffected by the first World War, they were the cause of Germany’s downfall during it (Trueman). Lastly, the ultimate question of “Does the end ever justify the means?” will be answered with proper reference to reasons toward the answer.

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The style of rhetoric was used in multiple speeches created by Adolf Hitler to convince the German people to blame the Jewish Community for the downfall of Germany in World War I. The first speech to be analyzed is his speech delivered in Salzburg, Germany on the eighth of August in 1920 (Hitler and Nazis, Statements Concerning Jews and Judaism). In the second paragraph of the transcript, Hitler writes that they must go against and solve the “Jewish Problem.” In the third paragraph, he references the words “racial tuberculosis” to the Jewish Community. They are also stated as the “Jewish Contamination” and referred to as “this poisoning of the nation” (Hitler and Nazis, Statements Concerning Jews and Judaism). By using such strong connotation, Hitler is able to convince the German people of the issues that were presented with the Jewish Community. The second speech that covers Hitler’s use of rhetoric is his closing speech at the Nuremberg Party Conference on the twelfth of September in 1938 (Hitler and Nazis, Statements Concerning Jews and Judaism). In this speech, Hitler refers to exterminating the Jews to create “a true community of people” and also refers to the Jewish Community as an “alien race which has nothing to do with us” (Hitler and Nazis, Statements Concerning Jews and Judaism). In the speech and the examples from it that are provided, Hitler is using falsification and incorrect statements to convince the German people and the Socialist Party. He also uses repetition in the speech by repeating that they, as the Socialist Party, must exclude these “aliens” from their perfect community. The third and final speech to be analyzed is Hitler’s speech to the Reichstag on the thirtieth of January in 1939 (Hitler and Nazis, Statements Concerning Jews and Judaism). In this speech, Hitler states that “Europe cannot be at peace until the Jewish question has been solved.” He states that he must “once more be a prophet” and that Jewish financers are going to be “plunging the nations once more into a world war.” Lastly, he states that the victory of Jewry will not be achieved due to the “annihilation of the Jewish race in Europe” (Hitler and Nazis, Statements Concerning Jews and Judaism). In these examples from this speech, Hitler is using empty terms and meaningless statements to express the idea of the extermination of the Jewish Community. He is also manipulating the emotions of the audience by using strong words, such as “annihilation” and “plunging.” As can be clearly seen in his speeches, Adolf Hitler used rhetoric to convince the German people of the extermination of the Jewish Community.

Adolf Hitler first discovered his “hatred” toward the Jewish Community after World War I. He served the army during the time of World War I and was surprised by the surrender of Germany. This caused him to begin speculating the betrayal of the German Army, specifically in the Treaty of Versailles (A&E Television Networks). During his work as an intelligence officer for the army, he had been introduced to the German Worker’s Party (DAP) and adopted most of the views of their leader, Anton Drexler. This caused him to join in 1919. In about two years, Hitler had changed the name of the group to the National Socialist German Workers’ Party (NSDAP), rose to the rank of chairman in the group, and designed the logo of the group. This logo is commonly referred to as the swastika (American-Israeli Cooperative Enterprise). After having become the leader of the NSDAP, Hitler began to quickly gain political reign over Germany and was able to express the view of the Socialist Party. The party itself had multiple negative views against the Jewish Community. They blamed the Jewish Community for all of Germany’s misfortunes, including the loss of World War I due to a Jewish conspiracy and the Treaty of Versailles also being a Jewish conspiracy (Trueman). Overall, Adolf Hitler had been influenced to “hate” the Jewish Community after being introduced to the DAP.

Throughout Adolf Hitler’s reign as the Fuhrer of Germany, he established one goal: to exterminate the Jewish Community and create a true community of people. However, the main concept is whether the end and aftereffects of the Holocaust truly justified the damage that had occurred during it. The end result of the Holocaust did not, and never will, justify the damage that it had caused to not just Germany, but the world as a whole. This viewpoint can be seen from the perspective of humanity as a whole. Throughout the time period of the Holocaust from 1933 to 1945, the amount of deaths that occurred throughout the continent amassed sixty million people. At that time this was over two percent of the population of Earth. However, that was an incredibly large amount of people that had died from the small period of twelve years (Trueman). Therefore, if taken from the perspective of humanity as a whole, the aftermath of the Holocaust does not, and will never, validate its reasons for having sixty million people die. However, if looking at the viewpoint from a political and native German standpoint, it can be argued that Germany thrived much more during its time as having Adolf Hitler as its Fuhrer, then after the Holocaust had occurred. In the end, the Holocaust will never truly justify its reason for the deaths of those sixty million people.

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All in all, the question of “Does the end ever justify the means?” in the case of the Holocaust can be answered with the simple response of “no.” The use of rhetoric by Adolf Hitler can be expressed through the speeches that had occurred all over Germany and the continent of Europe. Hitler’s use of rhetoric was one of the reasons of how he had easily convinced the German people to join the Socialist Party. Lastly, Adolf Hitler had first been culturally introduced to hatred towards the Jewish Community after World War I, by the Chairman of the DAP, Anton Drexler. This caused Hitler’s true understanding of why he had hatred for the Jewish Community. Overall, the Holocaust created a large indent in the timeline of the world that will never justify its reasons for killing sixty million people.

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