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Memoria e Ricerca

Reichswehr as political agent in the Weimar Republic

di Christoph Jahr
in Memoria e Ricerca n.s. 28 (2008), p. 73

This essay tackles the role of the Armed Forces as a political actor during the transition from WWI to the stabilization of the Weimar Republic. As is well-known, the new Reichswehr supported the democratic republic in the most turbulent phase of the first years, against the movements of extreme left and right, and in exchange for a fundamental autonomy within the State. However, the passivity of the political leadership before its own army was a first step towards suicide. The officers’ body became a fertile ground for dreams of rearmament and revenge, for sympathies towards nationalism and, finally, Nazism.