November 25th in German History: The Anti-Comintern Pact

In the mid 1930s, most of the international community did not think Adolf Hitler’s Germany would start the next great war. Indeed, many thought that it could be a bulwark against communism. Although fears of communist invasion had abated somewhat following the ascension of Joseph Stalin who helped to normalize the nation in international relationsContinue reading “November 25th in German History: The Anti-Comintern Pact”

Wunderwaffe and the Myth of German Technological Supremacy

Since the end of the Second World War, much has been made of German weapons and their purported superiority over their Allied counterparts. German planes are supposed to have been faster and better armed, German small arms possessed a higher rate of fire, German missiles revolutionized long-range warfare, and German tanks ruled the battlefield. PropagandaContinue reading “Wunderwaffe and the Myth of German Technological Supremacy”

German Industrial Development

As I said on Monday, I have decided to stop posting daily as school has started and I now have less time. I intend instead to write longer posts on more general topics. Each week, I plan to pick a topic and write a summary of it and and provide analysis and historical context. TheContinue reading “German Industrial Development”

September 7th: The Death of Wilhelm Pieck and Update

Wilhelm Pieck was a communist activist and East German politician. He was born in 1876 and was educated as a carpenter. In 1894 he joined the German Timber Workers Association and the wood-worker’s federation. As a member, he became increasingly political and in 1895 he joined the Social Democratic Party of Germany. He rose throughContinue reading “September 7th: The Death of Wilhelm Pieck and Update”

September 6th in German History: The Munich Massacre

Germany has seen its fair share of terrorist attacks. Political and religious extremists have multiple times killed Germans so as to create fear or make a perverse point. However, less common are attacks on German soil that have targeted non-Germans. One such attack was the Munich massacre, which ended on September 6th, 1972. On SeptemberContinue reading “September 6th in German History: The Munich Massacre”

September 4th in German History: Fritz Todt is Born

A few days ago, I discussed Albert Speer. Speer was catapulted to the height of his power by the death of another man, Fritz Todt. Todt was the Minister for Armaments and Production before his death in 1942. He was born on September 4th, 1891. Todt was born in Baden, in the south of Germany,Continue reading “September 4th in German History: Fritz Todt is Born”

September 3rd in German History: France and the UK begin the blockade of Germany

In every war Germany has fought with the UK, the Royal Navy has been able to cut off Germany from oceanic trade. WWII was no different. On September 3rd, two days after Germany invaded Poland, Great Britain and France used their navies to stop the passage of trade vessels to German ports. The initial phaseContinue reading “September 3rd in German History: France and the UK begin the blockade of Germany”

September 2nd in German History: Germany Annexes the Free City of Danzig

For nineteen years the Free City of Danzig was an independent city-state inside of the Polish-controlled Danzig corridor between Germany and its exclave of East Prussia. It stood as a reminder of Germany’s defeat in WWI and saw a great deal of tension between its German and Polish populations. In 1939, Germany demanded that PolandContinue reading “September 2nd in German History: Germany Annexes the Free City of Danzig”

September 1st in German History: The Death of Albert Speer

Albert Speer was a German architect and industrialist who was responsible for armaments organization during the latter years of WWII. During the decades after the war, he was often credited with significant increases in German weapons production and with being less brutal than other Nazis. He died on September 1st, 1981. Speer was born inContinue reading “September 1st in German History: The Death of Albert Speer”

August 31st in German History: The Gleiwitz Incident

One of the realities of international relations is that even the most bellicose of nations need justification, however flimsy, to initiate war. When Germany invaded Poland on September 1st, 1939, the stated pretext was a series of Polish attacks on German military installations. The most significant of these attacks was the Gleiwitz incident, which sawContinue reading “August 31st in German History: The Gleiwitz Incident”