Non-Fiction Books:

The Reach for Empire



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The Reach for Empire by "Time-Life"
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Four days after becoming chancellor of Germany, Adolf Hitler met with his senior generals at 14 Bendlerstrasse, the Berlin residence of Colonel General Kurt von Hammerstein-Equord, the commander in chief of the German army. The occasion, on February 3, 1933, was a dinner party to celebrate the sixtieth birthday of the foreign minister, Constantin von Neurath. Hitler's presence, however, provided Neurath and the military establishment with an unexpected opportunity to hear their new chancellor unbend in private. After a meal Hitler took command. He rose, tapped a glass for silence, and addressed the leaders he hoped would one day execute his ambitious plans for the expansion of the Reich. Hitler spoke for two hours, ranging across a number of topics. According to General Hammerstein's adjutant, who sat discreetly behind a curtain taking notes, Hitler labelled democracy the worst of all possible evils." he promised to eradicate Marxism "root and branch," to restore German military might, and to "weld together" the nation - a task that "cannot be done by persuasion alone, but only by force." At the heart of Hitler's rambling remarks was the concept of lebensraum, or living space. Germany, he insisted, needed "new lebensraum for our population surplus." One of the generals present quoted him as calling for the "conquest of new living space in the east and its ruthless Germanization." Here, for those who listened closely, was a blueprint of Hitler's plans for foreign adventure. He intended not merely to rebuild the armies of the Reich but to unleash them upon a series of countries: Austria, Czechoslovakia, Poland, and one day, the Soviet Union. This of course meant war. His aims, however, went much further. In "Mein Kampf" and later in his speeches, he spelled out his plans for a Reich so vast that it would become "lord of the earth" and "master of the world." He believed Germany's destiny would be determined by race and space. Racial purity, he was convinced, was the prime determinant of history, and the Germans belonged to the superior Nordic race. However to survive and to propagate this genetic superiority, Germany needed more territory. What Hitler had in mind for the these lands once they were conquered went beyond old-fashioned colonisation. He foresaw settlers of pure German stock supplanting the natives, who would be expelled or exterminated. His model was the European conquest and occupation of North America.
Release date Australia
September 1st, 2006
Country of Publication
United Kingdom
New edition
full colour & b/w illustrations, photographs & plans throughout
Time Life Value
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