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Forum LockedGreatest Rulers of Germany

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Poll Question: Who was Germany’s greatest ruler?
Poll Choice Votes Poll Statistics
1 [2.13%]
3 [6.38%]
2 [4.26%]
1 [2.13%]
1 [2.13%]
3 [6.38%]
26 [55.32%]
5 [10.64%]
5 [10.64%]
0 [0.00%]
This topic is closed, no new votes accepted

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    Posted: 22-Mar-2005 at 18:24
The French had their poll, so I can't see why we shouldn't have one.
So folks, who was Germany's greatest ruler ever?
I've interpreted "ruler" and "Germany" in the widest possible sense, not all of them were "rulers" ( eg. Arminius and Bismarck) and not all of them ruled over Germany of today, as we know it and love it.
For obvious reasons I had to include the Austrian painter and decorator in here.
My rational choice would be Frederik the Great of Prussia, as he dragged Germany out of the Middle Ages and laid the foundations for the unification of Germany that was eventually achieved under Bismarck. However, for personal reasons I choose Frederik II of Hohenstaufen, a truly extraordinary character whose merits are discussed in another thread.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Winterhaze13 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 22-Mar-2005 at 18:38
I think you forgot Konrad Adenauer, but I vote for Bismarck who made the German Empire strong. Good thread!!

Edited by Winterhaze13
Indeed, history is nothing more than a tableau of crimes and misfortunes.

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Komnenos Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 22-Mar-2005 at 18:45
Originally posted by Winterhaze13 Winterhaze13 wrote:

I think you forgot Konrad Adenauer, but I vote for Bismarck who made the German Empire strong. Good thread!!


I didn't forget him, is was a rather personal choice for the one slot for a post-war Bundeskanzler, and I think Willy Brandt's achievements had a far greater effect on contemporary European politics than Adenauer's. But I'm glad you mentioned him.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Thegeneral Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 22-Mar-2005 at 20:05

I wanted to choose Frederich but my hand wouldn't let me!  For some reasone it wanted Hitler!  But in all seriouness he did do some great things to get Germany out of the depression they were in after WWI.  Until he ruinedit by invading Poland. 

So it was a really hard choice between Frederich and Hitler.  Now I know I'm gonna get smoked for that but oh well.  If you thin of the good things he did before the war it makes sense.

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Komnenos Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 23-Mar-2005 at 04:23
Originally posted by Thegeneral Thegeneral wrote:

I wanted to choose Frederich but my hand wouldn't let me!  For some reasone it wanted Hitler!  But in all seriouness he did do some great things to get Germany out of the depression they were in after WWI.  Until he ruinedit by invading Poland. 


So it was a really hard choice between Frederich and Hitler.  Now I know I'm gonna get smoked for that but oh well.  If you thin of the good things he did before the war it makes sense.



You're gonna get smoked indeed. What good things did Hitler do before the outbreak of the war?
If you're refering to the Autobahns and the reducing of un-employment and the recovery of the German economy and all that, there was only ever one purpose and one reason, preparations for an agressive war.
Hitler began his military campaign the day after he came to power in 1933 and not only in September 1939.
The same with the Holocaust, it didn't begin with the first gaschamber being used, it started with the first discriminations against Jews, and that in 1933.
Hitler did not do any "good things before the war", there was no "before the war", it started in 1933.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Master of Disaster Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 23-Mar-2005 at 06:25
Tough choice between Willy Brandt and Frederick the Great. But I voted for latter one, as he deserves great credit for bringing the enlightenment to Germany, calling himself "the first servant of the state".
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Tobodai Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 23-Mar-2005 at 15:58
I cast first vote for Arminius.
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I have learned to hold popular opinion of no value."
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Thegeneral Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 23-Mar-2005 at 16:07

Actually, Hitler was doing good things before, yes before, the war.  When the prime minister before Churchill(I forgot his name) came to talk with Hitler he was amazed at how well Germany was doing thanks to Hitler. 

If Hitler had not started the war he would have gone down in history as one of the greatest leaders ever! 

My vote still stands but Friederich was good too

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Temujin Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 23-Mar-2005 at 16:37
Originally posted by Thegeneral Thegeneral wrote:

Actually, Hitler was doing good things before, yes before, the war.  When the prime minister before Churchill(I forgot his name) came to talk with Hitler he was amazed at how well Germany was doing thanks to Hitler. 

you prolly refer to chamberlain but chamberlain was nuts so...

 

bah, what bad choices...out of pure disgust I choose Wilhelm II (emperor) and Wilhelm I. of Württemberg for local patriotism...



Edited by Temujin
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Thegeneral Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 23-Mar-2005 at 17:36
He was nuts?  Really, why do you say that?
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Komnenos Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 23-Mar-2005 at 17:46
Originally posted by Thegeneral Thegeneral wrote:


If Hitler had not started the war he would have gone down in history as one of the greatest leaders ever! 


What a ridiculous statement!

What Hitler did before 1939: He came to power, eliminated all oppositions, initiated the race laws that would lead to the murder of 6 Million Jews, he build highways and re-build the the German armament industry in preparation for the war he had planned, he annexed parts of CSR and all of Austria, and that made him "one of the greatest leaders ever"? Rubbish!

Even if he hadn't started the war, he would have gone down in history as one the most brutal and deranged dictators ever.
Do some reading!
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Komnenos Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 23-Mar-2005 at 18:00
Originally posted by Temujin Temujin wrote:

bah, what bad choices...out of pure disgust I choose Wilhelm II (emperor) and Wilhelm I. of Württemberg for local patriotism...



Surely a slight misunderstanding, I didn't ask after the ruler with the best kept moustache in German history or the patron saint of the Bausparkasse.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote dark_one Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 23-Mar-2005 at 18:55
Quote

What Hitler did before 1939: He came to power, eliminated all oppositions, initiated the race laws that would lead to the murder of 6 Million Jews, he build highways and re-build the the German armament industry in preparation for the war he had planned, he annexed parts of CSR and all of Austria, and that made him "one of the greatest leaders ever"? Rubbish!

Bah. Stalin was also a brutal dictator, and while he did do a lot of bad, he made some people (urban and not rural dwellers) very happy.
Hitler brought a lot more people (Aryans) good and much fewer (Jews and other minorities) bad. Look at how he raised the standard of living in Germany (before the war) and even though he was a brutal dictator the "ethnically pure" actually lived quite well (again before the war).
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Komnenos Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 23-Mar-2005 at 19:14
Originally posted by dark_one dark_one wrote:


Bah. Stalin was also a brutal dictator, and while he did do a lot of
bad, he made some people (urban and not rural dwellers) very happy.
Hitler brought a lot more people (Aryans) good and much fewer (Jews and
other minorities) bad. Look at how he raised the standard of living in
Germany (before the war) and even though he was a brutal dictator the
"ethnically pure" actually lived quite well (again before the war).



For the last time, you just can take Hitler apart, in a good and a bit half. You must see in total.
Everything he did, from the very first moment of his coming to power, was in preparation of the ultimate realisation of his deranged policies:
to create the "Lebensraum" (space to live) for the Aryan "masterrace" by conquering other nations and to eliminate or subjucate all people he regarded as sub-human or ethnically inferior.
Even if the German population enjoyed a moment of economic prosperity in the Mid 30s, it had to pay heavily for that only a few years later.
Furthermore, this economic recovery was only made possible through a brutal dictatorship, and the first KZs filled up in 1933.
Wars don't start when the first shot is fired, they begin with planning and preparations, and Hitler's war began in 1933.


Edited by Komnenos
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Thegeneral Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 23-Mar-2005 at 20:05

No, war starts when war is declared not when you build your army.  For instance, say a country began to build a better army. does that mean there is a war?  No!

Hitler was rather brutal but surely you know that there were more ruthless leaders.  For example Stalin.  Hitler helped the German out a lot.  He even got the olympics to be held in Berlin.  At it is a true statement to say that if Hitler had not started the war he would have benn a very famous ruler.

I stick with my choice because of not only what he was but what he could have been.

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Capt. Lubber Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 24-Mar-2005 at 06:58
I think some of Komnenos' point is that all the good Hitler did, has to be seen in context. I don't think he ever intended to make the economy good, and to make the autobahn for the best of the german people. But it was all in preparation for the upcoming war and ethnic cleansing. It was a few good years for the majority of the german people but at the expense of several millions of jews and the worst war in human history. Even if we were to asume that the holocaust or the war had never been, Hitler would still be seen as a crack-pot dictator, just not as blood-thirsty.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Komnenos Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 24-Mar-2005 at 07:33
Originally posted by Capt. Lubber Capt. Lubber wrote:

I think some of Komnenos' point is that all the good Hitler did, has to be seen in context. I don't think he ever intended to make the economy good, and to make the autobahn for the best of the german people. But it was all in preparation for the upcoming war and ethnic cleansing. It was a few good years for the majority of the german people but at the expense of several millions of jews and the worst war in human history. Even if we were to asume that the holocaust or the war had never been, Hitler would still be seen as a crack-pot dictator, just not as blood-thirsty.


Thanks, Lubber, for explaining it again and very well indeed!
May be this time they understand!
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Temujin Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 24-Mar-2005 at 15:32

Originally posted by Komnenos Komnenos wrote:


Surely a slight misunderstanding, I didn't ask after the ruler with the best kept moustache in German history or the patron saint of the Bausparkasse.

bah, how you coem up with Arminius or Frederick II as rulers of Germany at all?

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Thegeneral Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 24-Mar-2005 at 16:03

I unserstand what you are saying; the good things Hitler did are overshadowed by the war.  But what he did was for the good of Germany and the war which he believed was for the good of Germans!

Geze, it is just an opinion!

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote druidebaron.nl Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 25-Mar-2005 at 09:12
Originally posted by Komnenos Komnenos wrote:

Originally posted by Thegeneral Thegeneral wrote:

I wanted to choose Frederich but my hand wouldn't let me!  For some reasone it wanted Hitler!  But in all seriouness he did do some great things to get Germany out of the depression they were in after WWI.  Until he ruinedit by invading Poland. 


So it was a really hard choice between Frederich and Hitler.  Now I know I'm gonna get smoked for that but oh well.  If you thin of the good things he did before the war it makes sense.



You're gonna get smoked indeed. What good things did Hitler do before the outbreak of the war?
If you're refering to the Autobahns and the reducing of un-employment and the recovery of the German economy and all that, there was only ever one purpose and one reason, preparations for an agressive war.




Hitler deserves very little credit for the autobahn. The first highway was build in Italy in 1924. In 1920s several German associations tried to convince the German people that the future belonged to the motor car and cars would need straight stretches of road that allowed them to get up to top speed.
The autobahnen were already planned by the Weimar government in the 1930s. The autobahnen fitted of course very well in Hitler's warplans.
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