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Word Count: 562
The events of the Holocaust occurred in two main phases 1933-1939 and 1939-1945 I 1933-1939On January 30 1933 Adolf Hitler was named Chancellor the most powerful position in the German government by the aged President Hindenburg who hoped Hitler could lead the nation out of its grave political and economic crisis Hitler was the leader of the right-wing National Socialist German Workers Party called the Nazi Party for short it was by 1933 one of the strongest parties in Germany even though reflecting the countrys multi-party system the Nazis had only won a plurality of 33 percent of the votes in the 1932 elections to the German parliament Once in power Hitler moved quickly to end German democracy He convinced his cabinet to invoke emergency clauses of the Constitution which permitted the suspension of individual freedoms of the press speech and assembly Special security forces the Special State Police the Gestapo the Storm Troopers SA and the Security Police murdered or arrested leaders of opposition political parties communists socialists and liberals The Enabling Act of March 23 1933 forced through a Reichstag already purged of many political opponents gave dictatorial powers to Hitler Also in 1933 the Nazis began to put into practice their racial ideology Echoing ideas popular in Germany as well as most other western nations well before the 1930s the Nazis believed that the Germans were racially superior and that there was a struggle for survival between them and inferior races They saw Jews Roman Gypsies and the handicapped as a serious biological threat to the purity of the German Aryan Race what they called the Master raceJews who numbered around 500000 in Germany less than one percent of the total population in 1933 were the principal targets of Nazi hatred The Nazis mistakenly identified Jews as a race and defined this race as inferior They also spewed hate mongering propaganda which unfairly blamed Jews for Germanys economic depression and
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