Who Made the Decision?
We didn’t have class on Tuesday so my blog post relates to the material we will be discussing in class on Thursday, specifically the major events of World War II. In my term paper I will be addressing the invasion and resistance of Norway, so when Spielvogel discussed this topic I was intrigued. As I’ve learned from research for my term paper, the invasion of Norway was not all Hitler’s idea as some may think. Spielvogel supports this when he says, “Hitler was willing to see Scandinavia remain neutral” (1).
So why did Hitler not leave Scandinavia alone? One man, Admiral Erich Raeder, “emphasized to Hitler the importance of Norway for naval bases as well as the danger…if Britain were to use Norway for bases themselves” (1). He convinced Hitler how important Scandinavia would be in the future. Raeder was a strong believer in the navy being one of key tools to success and wanted their needs satisfied. As a result he saw the attack on Scandinavia as necessary and completed all of the “subsequent planning and execution of the invasion of Denmark and Norway” (2). He was one of the driving forces behind the attack. It’s also important to point out this is another example of an individual who had access to Hitler and as a result had power. Raeder advocated for his navy and would continue to use his power until Hitler removed him from power in 1943 due to “strategic differences” (2).
- Jackson J. Spielvogel and David Redles, Hitler and Nazi Germany: A History Seventh Edition (New Jersey: Pearson Education, 2014), 201
- “Erich Raeder: German Naval Officer,” Editors of Encyclopaedia Britannica, accessed October 28, 2015, http://www.britannica.com/biography/Erich-Raeder, paragraph 2