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2014-08-17T15:20:11+05:30
In 1895, at age six, two important events happened in the life of young Adolf Hitler. First, the unrestrained, carefree days he had enjoyed up to now came to an end as he entered primary school. Secondly, his father retired on a pension from the Austrian civil service. This meant a double dose of supervision, discipline and regimentation under the watchful eyes of teachers at school and his strict father at home.

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One day, young Hitler went rummaging through his father's book collection and came across several of a military nature, including a picture book on the War of 1870-1871 between the Germans and the French. By Hitler's own account, this book became an obsession. He read it over and over, becoming convinced it had been a glorious event.

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Soon after the war in Munich, Hitler was recruited to join a military intelligence unit (the Press and Propaganda Department of Group Command IV of the Reichswehr), and was assigned to keep tabs on the German Worker's Party. At the time, it was comprised of only a handful of members. It was disorganized and had no program, but its members expressed a right-wing doctrine consonant with Hitler's.

He saw this party as a vehicle to reach his political ends. His blossoming hatred of the Jews became part of the organization's political platform. Hitler built up the party, converting it from a de facto discussion group to an actual political party. Advertising for the party's meetings appeared in anti-Semitic newspapers. The turning point of Hitler's mesmerizing oratorical career occurred at one such meeting held on October 16, 1919. Hitler's emotional delivery of an impromptu speech captivated his audience. Through word of mouth, donations poured into the party's coffers, and subsequent mass meetings attracted hundreds of Germans eager to hear the young, forceful and hypnotic leader.


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