This is part 7 in the ongoing series- for those of you who struggle with Roman numerals.
A key component to the Nazi personality, along with ambition, insecurity and intelligence, was manipulation. Hitler was the master of this trait, but others close to him were able to manipulate people and circumstances to forward their own goals as well as the party’s. Himmler and Heydrich were able to use manipulation to create a power base for themselves and get rid of their competitors in the SA. Goering too, had designs on power, and while he noticed “Himmler’s spinsterish face...concealed a ravenous ambition,” he was also secretly concerned with attaining a higher post for himself within the regime.
While Himmler and Goebbels’ quest for power was well evidenced at the time, especially with Rohm’s execution, Goering played a significant role in implicating the SA head, and used it to vault himself higher in the Nazi pecking order. Goering, clearly seeing that Himmler and Heydrich were the men on the rise in Hitler’s eyes backed their SS consolidation of power by giving them control of the police in states which he administered. Now with Himmler firmly in power, Goering no longer had to worry about Rohm, and Himmler had to only report to Hitler himself.
Deception was another a key element to the makeup of the ideal Nazi. Throughout the time leading up to the assassination of Rohm and his SA confederates, Himmler, Heydrich and Goering lied to Hitler to protect their own personal interests. These men were not above lying to their beloved Fuhrer to obtain their goals. Manipulation and deception went hand in hand, and the deception that went on in the Nazi regime was done to manipulate circumstances for the success of the Third Reich. During the war, the deception among the party elites was so prevalent that it led to widespread corruption. Each of the top Nazis was so good at deception and shady dealings that it crumbled the bureaucracy as time wore on. Hitler’s closest advisors were almost taught to lie by the Fuhrer himself.
Not only was Hitler a master manipulator, he was also a great deceiver. He was able to create enough deception in Germany to convince the people of the Jewish threat, and that the only way to achieve his Aryan utopia was to get rid of the Jews. As time went on, Hitler and the SS heads lied more and more to the German people about the course of the war, and the fate of Jews and other undesirables.