Under Hitler's rule, Germany was transformed into a totalitarian state where nearly all aspects of life were controlled by the government. Hindenburg died on 2 August and Hitler became dictator of Germany by merging the offices and powers of the Chancellery and Presidency. All power was centralised in Hitler's person and his word became the highest law. The government was not a coordinated, co-operating body, but a collection of factions struggling for power and Hitler's favour. In the midst of the Great Depression , the Nazis restored economic stability and ended mass unemployment using heavy military spending and a mixed economy. Using deficit spending , the regime undertook extensive public works, including the construction of Autobahnen motorways.
But to the world, it became a much more polarizing and defining moment. To schoolchildren. To retirees. To vacationers who stumble upon the museum in the brick building on South Third Street near the Tromp and Tread Boot Plaza and Station Break, where customers can get a minute oil change. The story begins more than three-quarters of a century ago in Portz, Romania, a tiny village where Eva and her family were the only Jews. At 81, Eva still remembers when Hungarian Nazis took over the one-room schoolhouse designed to teach peasant children like her and her twin sister, Miriam.
The first time I drove there, in February , heavy snow was falling and a lorry had jack-knifed on the Berlin ring road, so it would take longer. The head of the SS had friends in the area and would drop in to inspect the camp as he passed by. He rarely left without issuing new orders.