Adolf Hitler was the (Leader) of Nazi Germany, the instigator of World War II and the driving force behind the attempt to exterminate European Jewry, otherwise known as the Final Solution or the Holocaust.
Hitler enlisted in the German army and saw four years of front-line service during which he was wounded several times and decorated for bravery twice. He was gassed near the end of the war. During this time, he served as an intelligence agent for the military authorities, in the course of which he attended a meeting of the tiny German Workers Party in 1919. He later joined the party, became its leader and changed its name to the National Socialist German Workers Party, later called the Nazi Party. In 1920, the 25 Points of the Nazi Party were proclaimed, one of which called for the removal of the Jews from German society.
The Nazis tried to seize power by force in November 1923 (called the Beer Hall Putsch), but were thwarted by the Munich police. Hitler was
convicted of high treason and sentenced to prison, where he served about a year. During that time, he began to write Mein Kampf ("My Struggle"), which later became the second Bible in Nazi Germany. Hitler resolved to achieve power legally, and after a series of events too numerous to detail here, was appointed Chancellor of Germany by President von Hindenburg on January 30, 1933.
Over the next 6 years, Hitler undertook a series of measures designed to rid Germany of its obligations under the Treaty of Versailles (imposed on Germany after World War I), restore the economy which had been devastated by the Great Depression, rearm the country, and acquire ("living space") for Germany. In Mein Kampf, he had written of the need for this "living space" which he said could only be acquired at the expense of countries to the east, notably Russia. In 1938, by a series of intrigues, Germany annexed Austria and the Sudeten portion of Czechoslovakia, and, in 1939, occupied the remainder of...