Download West German Politics by Geoffrey K. Roberts (auth.) PDF

By Geoffrey K. Roberts (auth.)

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But, encouraged by British and American pressures, a deliberate element of 'education for democracy' was introduced, countering tendencies to gloss over or distort Germany's own past. These policies were generally successful in the rehabilitation of Germany, and the elections of 1953, 1957 and 1961 were all victories for the CDU-CSU. Indeed, in 1957 the CDU-CSU won 270 seats in a Bundestag of 497 members, but nevertheless formed a coalition Government. Meanwhile revisions of the electoral law and polarisation of the electorate meant that by 1961 only the Christian Union parties, the Social Democrats and the Free Democrats were still represented in the Bundestag.

His period in office would in any case have been important for the future development of the new state. Adenauer made certain that it was crucial. His policies, his political style and his political attitudes shaped the Germany of 1971 as Bismarck had shaped the Germany that came into existence in 1871. He came to the Chancellorship at the late age of seventythree, already very much the elder statesman of his party, with long experience as 0 berbilrgermeister of Koln and, in his capacity as President of the Parliamentary Council, having been very influential in the shaping of the Basic Law.

Ure of Power (London, 1966). 3 W. Manchester, The Arms of Krupp (London, 1969) pp. 400-8. POLITICAL HISTORY (Foreign Minister) and von Blomberg (Defence). However, Hitler could not find the parliamentary majority which had been Hindenburg's self-justification for agreeing to accept Hitler as Chancellor, so an election was called (the eighth national campaign since 1928'). The Nazi campaign was more vicious in its style and more anti-democratic in its content than ever before. The mysterious burning of the Reichstag in the middle of the campaign gave Hitler additional excuse for attacking the Communists, who were blamed for the fire, and for excluding them from the Reichstag after the election itself.

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