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Hitler was not German!

Adolf Hitler was born on April 20th 1889, in Bramau am Inn, near Linz, now in Austria; at the time, it was part of the Austrian-Hungarian Empire. So Hitler was Austrian, as his parents were.

Adolf Hitler
from German Federal Archive (Bundesarchiv,Bild 183-S33882/CC-BY-SA)

However, during World War I, he fought with the 16th Bavarian Reserve Regiment, i.e. the German Army, as an Austrian volunteer. He was decorated twice.

For a significant portion of his life, Hitler remained Austrian. This includes the episode of his attempt to seize power with a coup: the Beer Hall Putsch in 1923 (the putsch failed and Hitler was sent to prison for five years but went out after nine months).

Only on February 25th 1932, the interior minister of Brunswick, a Nazi, appointed Hitler as administrator for the state’s delegation to the Reichsrat in Berlin. Doing so, he made Hitler a citizen of Brunswick, and thus of Germany. Without this naturalisation, Hitler wouldn’t be able to run for Presidential elections in March 1932 against von Hindenburg…. Hitler didn’t become President then but, by gathering a significant 35% of votes, forced von Hindenburg to nominate him Chancelor (i.e. Prime Minister).

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{ 1 comment… add one }
  • Maddy 29-Oct-2013, 14:42

    Whoa! Didn’t knowabout this one absolutely.

    So the entire German hullabaloo around Nazism was actually strengthened by an Austrian! Nice post.

    Cheers,
    Maddy