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How similar were Stalin and Hitler? sample essay

The dictatorships of Adolf Hitler and Joseph Stalin cost many innocent people their lives and caused mass panic and paranoia. By examining evidence, it is clear the two are quite similar in some ways but also totally different. Whilst both of their family lives and their ways of controlling their regimes were very alike, their rise to power and their beliefs and ideas weren’t very similar. Both Hitler and Stalin had difficult early lives that told a tale of absent or weak fathers. Both fathers were alcoholics and both died when Hitler and Stalin were very young. Stalin’s father died when he was 11 and Hitler lost his father with 13 years. Both young boys had no real fatherly figure to guide and inspire them, they only had a drunk who died when they were still at a young age.

The 1920s was an important point in history, Hitler rose to power in Germany while Stalin rose to power in the Soviet Union, although they rose to power during the same time, they achieved this in two different ways. Hitler became head of the Nazi party and was able to convince the German people to vote him as chancellor, when he achieved this he took the power all for himself, he banned all other parties and ensured that he couldn’t be stopped. Stalin’s rise to power wasn’t as easy, he may have been one of the top communist leaders but he wasn’t the favourite. Leon Trotsky stood in Stalin’s path to power, Stalin overcame this obstacle through using his ruthlessness and trickery. Once he was the undisputed leader he did the same as Hitler, he took ultimate control, eliminating anyone who would oppose him.

Hitler and Stalin ruled with an iron fist, they used harsh tactics to eliminate anyone who didn’t agree with their policies. They used similar tactics, for example the secret police, whilst Hitler had the feared Gestapo, Stalin had the ruthless KGB, both secret police had the right to arrest, torture and search houses without any courtly permission. Hitler and Stalin both had a large network of informers that reported anyone who dared to oppose them, everyone lived in fear and paranoia, you couldn’t trust anyone. Both banned any other political parties, in addition both sent any people who might be a danger to their regime into labour camps. Also they both influenced the peoples mind by cunningly using propaganda. From this one can conclude that Hitler and Stalin had very similar ways of keeping control, which was by using terror.

Although both were dictators, Hitler and Stalin had different ideas on how society should be run and organised. Hitler wanted one person in utter control, himself. Whilst Stalin wanted a communist society, people’s power, everyone was equal. Hitler was actually very afraid of communism, he hated the idea of it. Hitler’s main political opponents were the communist party and the social democrats. Also they had very different views about society, Hitler thought the women’s place was at home, they should have many children and be a good wife but Stalin had other ideas he wanted the women to help work in the factories. But they also had some similar views for example both had high expectations of the education of the youth both encouraged children to go to school as long as possible.

In conclusion one can see that Hitler and Stalin weren’t that different after all. Even though they had different beliefs and a different rise to power they still did a lot of things that were quite similar, they kept their countries in control using the same methods they also had a very alike early life. Hitler murdered millions of people, mostly Jews but also other groups of people. Through Stalin’s rule many people were also killed, he forced a famine in the Ukraine to destroy the people there seeking independence from his rule,7 million people died from 1932-1933. Stalin also had most prisoners of war sent to the Gulags (Stalin’s Labour camps), where many died from the harsh conditions but many also survived this.

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