Was Hitler a military genius, or was he just lucky?

Hitler is one of the most infamous dictators of the 20th century. It’s impossible to deny that this person was quite talented and intelligent. However, Naz Germany still failed to conquer the whole world due to the strong resistance of the Allies and the USSR. However, in the first years of WWII, Hitler managed to conquer almost the whole of Europe and made Germany one of the most powerful states in the world. It can’t be denied that Hitler was an effective leader and great ideologist who managed to influence the minds of thousands of people and consolidate his nation into one huge war machine.


There are still debates about what factors have made Hitler so successful in warfare. Therefore, it is necessary to define and analyze these factors to understand whether Hitler was a military genius or just lucky. The first factor that should be considered is the ideology created by Hitler and his Nazi party. After the WWII, Germany was quite destabilized economically and socially (Motyl, 2000, p. 190). In addition, Germany lost huge territories. Hence, the German people felt humiliated. When society lives in constant poverty and has numerous social problems, it is quite easy for radical movements to become popular. As a result, Hitler managed to use nationalism to show that all troubles experienced by Germany were caused by another state.

Therefore, people should unite and face the threat posed by external forces (Motyl, 2000, p. 190). When WWII started, Hitler had millions of highly motivated people who were ready to fight to the death and believed that they deserved to conquer the world. Thus, the ideology played a significant role in making Nazis so strong and gave them confidence that the destiny of their nation was to become the most powerful in the world.

In 1938, Hitler managed to annex Austria, which provided him with more resources and soldiers (Berger, 2009, p. 81). Additionally, this territory allowed him to march into Czechoslovakia’s Sudetenland. Another huge victory made by Hitler was that he had a strong political alliance with Mussolini before WWII.

As can be seen, Hitler was focused on gaining as much power, force, and resources as possible to start the war. He also developed the main military warfare concept used by the Nazi Germany, which is known as blitzkrieg or lightening war. While Europe was absolutely unprepared for the German invasion, it was quite easy for Hitler to capture new territories when the war began.


Small European states like Poland, Greece, Monaco, Luxemburg, Netherlands, and others couldn’t resist Nazi aggression and surrendered almost immediately. In some cases, Hitler’s forces seized countries in one day. Even one of the most powerful countries in Europe, France, wasn’t able to provide effective resistance to the Nazi forces and was seized in 6 weeks (Crawford & Foster, 2007, p. 68).

These fact victories can be explained not only by the talent of Hitler as a military commander but also by his talent as a politician. Huge countries such as Britain and the USA didn’t want to take part in the first years of the war because Hitler had a political alliance with the USSR. Moreover, when Hitler annexed Austria, people believed that the Nazis would stop and won’t make any attempts to invade other European countries. Hence, Hitler used the desire to avoid a war between huge European countries and the USA and managed to capture almost the whole of Europe without serious resistance.

Works cited:
Motyl, A.J. Encyclopedia of Nationalism, Two-Volume Set. Elsevier Science, 2000. Print.
Bergen, D.L. The Holocaust: A Concise History. Rowman & Littlefield Publishers, 2009. Print.
Crawford, K., and S.J. Foster. War, Nation, Memory: International Perspectives on World War Ii in School History Textbooks. Information Age Pub., 2007. Print.


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