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    (Original post by steverf)
    Yeah, you need to name other historians, check wikipedia for functionalism vs intentionalism, lists loads on there. and you need to talk about their views
    You don't need to name other historians, you need to evaluate the sources within the context.
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    (Original post by Charlotte_Heart_NYC)
    Hey guys, if this helps I've got two example essays here for the June 2006 paper. My friend did the first which got 64/80 and I did the second which got 60/80 (I think, can't quite remember). My history said if we combined the two they would be perfect as mine was good on sources and hers was good on general knowledge.

    My friend's:
    How valid are these two sources as evidence to an historian interpreting Hitler’s relationship with the German military, 1933-45?

    During the years 1933-1945 Hitler’s relations with the generals varied dramatically from sheer devotion to deep distrust between the two. Much of this was caused by Hitler’s changing attitude and constant push for a greater Germany which frequently caused Hitler to push the boundaries of what was acceptable to the other countries and which often caused the German generals much stress and worry.

    Source A is written by a General von Blomberg, a high ranking Nazi general at the time this source was written. At this point in 1934 Blomberg was not only one of Hitler’s most trusted advisors, but also one of his most intimate and beloved friends. Blomberg was extremely devoted to Hitler. The source was published in a Nazi newspaper in 1934 which shows it to be first hand and therefore would be accurate of the time. The source speaks of ‘the army standing in unity with the whole nation’ which could be in reference to the choice Hitler had made between the army and the SA in the Night of the Long Knives. By choosing the army and destroying the SA leaders Hitler had created unity and prevented pressure from both sides. The source also talks of Adolf Hitler ‘who cam from out of our ranks and will always remain one of ours’ giving the impression Blomberg really respects him especially since he has built himself up from nothing. He seems to see him as a man of the people fighting for his people. Blomberg is full of admiration.

    In Source B it speaks of the beginnings of changes within the generals relations with Hitler. Some seem to be becoming more disillusioned and Beck who was previously a respected and influential figure became increasingly critical of Hitler’s regime. He felt Germany needed more time to re-arm herself. Few generals were as brave as Beck in criticising Hitler. The source tells of how a key turning point was Hitler’s expansionist course which worried the generals. The writer of the source is Karl Bracher who is an academic historian specialising in Nazi Germany and so he would know a great deal about the subject he was writing about and will have researched the material widely. However the book was written in 1969 which was before the Russian archives were open to the Western historians so he would not have had access to all the resources available.

    These sources do not however cover the entire period of Hitler’s relationship with the generals. It only covers the early and mid-30s which does not include many of the key turning points in Hitler’s relations with his generals for example one of the key turning points was in 1938 when the Blomberg-Fritsch affair took place which was caused because neither Blomberg nor Fritsch agreed with the Hossbach memorandum. This turned into a massive issue and Hitler looked for excuses to rid his cabinet of these men. He took his chance when Blomberg married a Czech prostitute and he dug up an old accusation against Fritsch that he was a homosexual. This led to Hitler having a complete reshuffle of his cabinet and replacing his disillusioned generals with ‘yes men’ who would agree with whatever he told them.

    Another key event was Beck’s resignation in August 1938. Hitler had been concerned Beck’s views were too much like that of a Reichswehr general and not enough like that of a Wehrmacht general. He had to resign as Hitler had held a conference at which he attacked Beck’s views and lost him a great deal of support. The point at which Hitler particularly lost a lot of his general’s support was his decision to invade Russia in Operation Barbarossa. The generals had a particular problem with this as they felt they would be forced to fight a war on two fronts as they were fighting in the west already in 1941 and that this would over extend the army. Also, after he proceeded with his plans he was relentless particularly as he would not let his troops withdraw in Stalingrad when they were losing the war in 1942.

    The turning of the tide took place in 1942 where the Germans began losing the war; at this point Beck was gathering together generals who had become critical of Hitler. They began to assemble assassination plans against Hitler to prevent Hitler’s war going any further. They had two failed attempts on Hitler’s life; however Hitler was aware of the unrest among his generals and was suspicious. The third attempt of Hitler’s life was actually carried out but failed at the last moment and Hitler was keen for revenge and killed over 5000 people.

    Altogether Hitler’s relationship with the generals follows a distinct pattern, when Hitler’s policy seemed to be working they were more than happy to support the Fuhrer. However when the Fuhrer made extravagant proposals the army were unsure they could fulfil, they because increasingly sceptical. Hitler’s drive seemed to make the criticise him and since he was unreasonable with his demands they either had to be submissive or were no longer part of Hitler’s regime. However not all of Hitler’s generals felt that Hitler’s policy was outlandish. Many such as Rommel stayed loyal till the very end in 1944 and when Hitler committed suicide they felt they should do the same. So to say his relationship with all his generals deteriorated is untrue. The ‘yes men’ followed blindly and pledged themselves to Hitler completely which is what Hitler wanted in his regime.

    Mine:
    How valid are these two sources as evidence to an historian interpreting Hitler’s relationship with the German military, 1933-45?

    Hitler’s relationships with his Generals went through many phases, highlighted by key turning points such as the Night of the Long Knives 1934, the Blomberg-Fritsch affair 1937, the Beck Plot 1938 and the Bomb Plot 1944.

    Source A, a primary source, describes a period of warm relations between Hitler and the German military, epitomised by the phrase ‘wearing with pride the symbol…’ which indicates that the ‘army’ are proud to be part of the new, Germanic state. The overall tone of this excerpt is very positive, but of course one would expect no less from the sophisticated Nazi propaganda machine: this source has been published in the ‘official Nazi newspaper’ which means that it will not be critical of Hitler which leads us to question the reliability of the source. However, this source is probably indicative of how the loyal Blomberg felt about Hitler at this point - it was not until 1937 that he fell out of favour with Hitler and the Nazi party which Bracher discusses briefly in source B. Perhaps one of the most important aspects of source A when considering it’s usefulness to an historian is its date of publication, ‘29th June 1934’ the eve of the infamous Night of the Long Knives when the Nazi party murdered key members of the SS including Hitler’s friend, Ernst Rohm in order to align themselves fully with the German army. Blomberg will therefore be trying to pave the way for this alignment and the oath of loyalty that the army will swear to the Fuhrer, by portraying their relationship as one of close ‘unity’.

    Source B (the secondary source) on the other hand, discusses the initial break in what Blomberg in source A perceives to be a ‘loyal’ relationship between the German army and Hitler as the Fuhrer embarked on an ‘expansionist course’. This refers to the Hossbach Memorandum which describes the meeting that took place between Hitler and his top Generals in November 1937 where Hitler took the opportunity to outline his plans for war which were met with criticism by certain Generals, leading to the dismissal of Blomberg and Fritsch and Hitler’s decision to become Supreme Commander of the German Army, appointing loyal and subservient Keitel as token, Head of the Wehrmacht. Bracher alludes to Beck’s criticism of Hitler however he fails to mention the key role he plays in the July Bomb Plot, 1944 following his resignation in August 1938 after trying to recruit other disillusioned Generals to stop Hitler carrying out his plan of total war. Whilst Bracher is described as a ‘Nazi specialist’, it must be noted that this book has been published prior to the opening of the Eastern archives to Western scholars and the influential works of historians such as Ian Kershaw, therefore one must wonder whether Bracher’s opinion may have changed had he written this a few decades later.

    The main difference in these sources lies in the perspectives of the authors: at this point, Blomberg would have little reason to describe Hitler’s relationship with his Generals as anything less than ‘united’, Bracher on the other hand, with access to Western documentation and as a specialist in Nazi history, is able to produce a much more balanced overview although his source lacks detail and fails to consider some of the important peaks and troughs of Hitler’s relationships with his Generals.

    Whilst Sources A and B are fairly useful when considering Hitler’s relationships with his Generals in the early period of his reign as Fuhrer, there is, not enough detail of key turning points like the Beck Plot of 1938 and the Bomb Plot of 1944 in the latter years to present a comprehensive picture of the changing relationship between Hitler and his Generals. Also, whilst source A’s status as a primary source written by a favourite General of this period, source B, despite having been written by Nazi ‘specialist’ Bracher, was written prior to the opening of the Eastern archives to Western scholars and so I therefore feel it is not as reliable as it would have been had it been written several years later.

    To conclude, sources A and B could be useful to an historian studying this period, if used alongside other reliable documents, however, when used in isolation, they do not present an accurate and full enough picture to be considered ‘valid’.

    I know my essays aren't perfect but:

    I think that in the first essay there is too much narrative.
    But in the second there is not enough coverage of the whole period e.g. 1934 oath of loyalty, but by the end of war when popularity could have increased because the military seen fighting the war as fighting for their homeland as the Russians had invaded.

    Both of them need to cover the army's initial views of the Nazi Party e.g. "Austrian corporal" but supporting rearmament and nationalistic policies.All you need to do is say for Bacher would have knew about the Austrian corporal because writing after the time he would have been able to cross-reference with other historians whilst Blomberg may not have known about certain military members being satisfied with certain Nazi government policies as he wouldn't have had access to key government minutes like Bacher did (I'm sure you could re-phrase that better, I am very tired now sorry).
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    Yeh they were pretty much the comments my teacher gave us, should've typed them up with the essay. I did say at the beginning that they weren't perfect though.
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    No one doing the changing fortunes of the Nazi party? :O
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    (Original post by Charlotte_Heart_NYC)
    You don't need to name other historians, you need to evaluate the sources within the context.
    I thought so, phew.

    Thanks for the example essays also. Have you been told how many pages on average you should write for it? The exam's 50 mins isn't it, and I think I'll be able to muster up around 4 pages or so... I really don't know :confused:


    (Original post by Cursed)
    No one doing the changing fortunes of the Nazi party? :O
    Yes, along with a few others here it seems.
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    [QUOTE=city_chic]I thought so, phew.

    Thanks for the example essays also. Have you been told how many pages on average you should write for it? The exam's 50 mins isn't it, and I think I'll be able to muster up around 4 pages or so... I really don't know :confused:


    I've just been told not to stop writing under any circumstances!
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    None of you guys/girls seem to INTEGRATE the source analysis with the knowledge?That's the way I've always written my essays for this topic.BTW I'll try and type up an essay which got 62/80 tonight, my style is very different to those example essays.
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    (Original post by Cursed)
    No one doing the changing fortunes of the Nazi party? :O


    No because there is too much knowledge.You can revise in it an hour or two.
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    (Original post by Louisdf)
    None of you guys/girls seem to INTEGRATE the source analysis with the knowledge?That's the way I've always written my essays for this topic.BTW I'll try and type up an essay which got 62/80 tonight, my style is very different to those example essays.
    Hey, I don't seem to have any notes on the Beck Plot of 1938, could you possibly help me out? I can't work out from the internet on whether it's his attempt to get the Generals to resign en masse or him contacting the British Foreign Office during the Czech crisis? Either way help and more detail would be appreciated.
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    Dose anyone have any idea of what i could put down to relate to the cultural or social aspects of 19th century British foreign policy?
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    (Original post by Charlotte_Heart_NYC)
    Hey, I don't seem to have any notes on the Beck Plot of 1938, could you possibly help me out? I can't work out from the internet on whether it's his attempt to get the Generals to resign en masse or him contacting the British Foreign Office during the Czech crisis? Either way help and more detail would be appreciated.


    I have no idea of what you are talking about sorry!


    I've attached my answer to the 2007 question BTW, everyone can feel free to leave feedback if they want.The question is included.
    Attached Files
  1. File Type: doc HI7 2007.doc (28.5 KB, 135 views)
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    Can anyone give me some brief background info to Blomberg (any maybe Fritch too) please?
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    (Original post by Louisdf)
    No because there is too much knowledge.You can revise in it an hour or two.
    "You can revise in it an hour or two" What do you mean?

    Are you trying to say there is alot more knowledge needed for the changing fortunes than there is for Hitlers relasionship with the military?

    Guh, our lecthuer hardly did anything on German foreign policy or Hitlers relasionship with the german military so i only really have the option to do changing fortunes

    So i have very little notes on the Military question ;/
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    [QUOTE=Cursed]"You can revise in it an hour or two" What do you mean?

    Are you trying to say there is alot more knowledge needed for the changing fortunes than there is for Hitlers relasionship with the military?

    Yep
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    (Original post by city_chic)
    Can anyone give me some brief background info to Blomberg (any maybe Fritch too) please?
    Frirch was caught having gay sex and Blomberg married a prostitute(I think she was 18).That's all our teacher told us about them lol.
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    (Original post by Louisdf)
    Frirch was caught having gay sex and Blomberg married a prostitute(I think she was 18).That's all our teacher told us about them lol.
    That's a bit too vague. At the Hossbach Memorandum (Nov 5th) Blomberg and Fritsch were very critical about Hitler's foreign policy plans. In late Jan 1938, it was discovered tht the woman Blomberg had married was a Czech prostitute/porn star who had lived with a Jewish man and then an old accusation about Fritsch being gay was dug up (very little evidence to substantiate it, just the word of a guy called Schmidt and there were a lot of holes in his argument). Hitler took this opportunity to completely reshuffle the top Generals, leaving only the Kriegsmarine alone. Blomberg and Fritsch were both forced to resign, Keital was employed to replace Blomberg although he was little more than an office worker. Hitler made himself Supreme Commander of the Armed Forces, replaced Neurath with Ribbentrop in the Foreign Office, had already replace Schacht with Funk (a Hitler man) as Minister of Economics and took the opportunity to reshuffle some of the German diplomats in Tokyo, Rome, London and somewhere else (sorry can't remember!).

    The Blomberg-Fritsch affair not only allowed Hitler to completely reshuffle the German army but also, the poor moral code of the Generals gave elevated Hitler's position (that last part is very badly phrased).
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    (Original post by Charlotte_Heart_NYC)
    That's a bit too vague. At the Hossbach Memorandum (Nov 5th) Blomberg and Fritsch were very critical about Hitler's foreign policy plans. In late Jan 1938, it was discovered tht the woman Blomberg had married was a Czech prostitute/porn star who had lived with a Jewish man and then an old accusation about Fritsch being gay was dug up (very little evidence to substantiate it, just the word of a guy called Schmidt and there were a lot of holes in his argument). Hitler took this opportunity to completely reshuffle the top Generals, leaving only the Kriegsmarine alone. Blomberg and Fritsch were both forced to resign, Keital was employed to replace Blomberg although he was little more than an office worker. Hitler made himself Supreme Commander of the Armed Forces, replaced Neurath with Ribbentrop in the Foreign Office, had already replace Schacht with Funk (a Hitler man) as Minister of Economics and took the opportunity to reshuffle some of the German diplomats in Tokyo, Rome, London and somewhere else (sorry can't remember!).

    The Blomberg-Fritsch affair not only allowed Hitler to completely reshuffle the German army but also, the poor moral code of the Generals gave elevated Hitler's position (that last part is very badly phrased).
    Thanks very much!
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    What does everyone think of my answer to the 2007 paper?
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    (Original post by Louisdf)
    What does everyone think of my answer to the 2007 paper?
    Like you said it's completely different to the ones that I posted. I thought it lacked a few summarative lines as an introduction but your source analysis was good.
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    (Original post by Louisdf)
    What does everyone think of my answer to the 2007 paper?
    You seemed to analyse the sources very well. Though I noticed you wrote a lot - 'she needs to have written about...' I'd personally refrain from saying that and just say something like 'a limitation in the source is that there's no mention of blah blah blah which was very significant at the time/would enable us to get a clearer picture of blah blah blah...' It felt a tiny bit repetitive too. Overall good though.
 
 
 
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