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With what justification did the Nazi regime claim to have achieved an economic miracle in Germany by the end of 1938 Essay

The nazi economy by the end of 1938 did show some signs of a ‘economic miracle’ by the economy being more secure in 1938 than in earlier years “1938 GNP=105 RM billions 1935=74 RM billions”. This exemplified that the German economy was achieving in this sense a ‘economic miracle’ because this demonstrates that the gross national product of the economy had increased. Although this is true the economy was still not what Hitler wanted it to be, he wanted “fulfilment of the task”(Hitler speech, Decree on the execution of the four year plan) which was the four year plan and this was not provided in the way that was outlined by the plan with its goals, which were mainly in production of German

Raw materials but also in distribution of raw materials, the labour, agriculture production, price supervision, and foreign exchange matters. Most of the goals were undershot and by this you can tell that the German economy hadn’t quite achieved the miracle that it had set out to accomplish.

Hitler believed that war was “inevitable” (Hite and Hinton) so he thought that the economy should be geared mainly towards rearmament but the man in charge of the economy in 1936 was Schacht and he favoured boosting exports and not so fast a rearmament because he recognised that a “war economy in peacetime had raised serious problems such as mounting foreign debts, balance of payment deficits, and shortage of raw materials”(Nazi Germany K.P. Fischer) Hitler was against this and he acquired Goering as the head of the economy because his views were more like Hitler’s. He believed in guns apposed to butter (‘guns v butter’) “Guns make us powerful butter only makes us fat” (Goering). Hitler produced a memo, which informed Goering what he wanted done in the economy, and targets he wanted met.

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They never had achieved all the goals they set out to complete on German raw materials (autarky: self sufficient) which was dramatically shown in mineral oil (including synthetic petrol) when in “1938 output of mineral oil was 2,340 thousand tons which was an increase of 130% but “still only covered 18% of the demand”. Which was significant because 40%-50% of total investment of the plan went towards the production of synthetic oils.

They also didn’t achieve any of the goals in other raw materials such as explosives “1938 explosives=45,000 tonnes plan target =223,000 tonnes” Explosives were vital for the war effort for obvious reasons and by not achieving the target in these and also all the other goals of the raw materials were not met (aluminium: used to make planes. Buna rubber: valuable for uses requiring resistance to the action of oils or abrasion. Nitrogen: used to prepare fertiliser. Gun powder. Steel: buildings, ships. Iron ore. Brown coal and Hard coal).

These figures seriously go against the suggestion that the Nazis have achieved an economic miracle because they show that the “German economy had been subjected to no more than partial mobilisation for the purposes of rearmament”(Nazism 1919-1945: J. Noakes and G. Pridham). The output of raw German materials does generally increase in 1942 e.g. explosives in 1942 300,000 tonnes, plan target=223,000 tonnes. This shows they met some targets but by 1942 the war was already in full swing and it was also too late by than because the USA were in the war and this would prove to be a major turning point.

The goals set by Hitler could be considered as unreachable targets but are there to encourage more work. This is dismissed however because if they had produced enough, how could of they lost the war. By the start of the war Germany was more prepared for war than it was in 1914. Though they weren’t fully prepared so it wasn’t quite a ‘miracle’ more an improvement.

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