Adam Tooze But, as THE WAGES OF DESTRUCTION makes clear, Hitler was never remotely strong enough to beat either Britain or the. An extraordinary mythology has grown up around the Third Reich that hovers over political and moral debate even today. Adam Tooze’s controversial new book. Buy The Wages of Destruction: The Making and Breaking of the Nazi Economy New Edition by Adam Tooze (ISBN: ) from Amazon’s Book Store.

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The Wages of Destruction: The Making and Breaking of the Nazi Economy by Adam Tooze

A cooperative union of the European states, such as was promoted after the war, did not accord with Hitler’s racist obsessions. The Wages of Destruction is a brilliant, fascinating exploration of Nazi Germany’s economy. They got fairly technical it helps to know basic macroeconomic concepts like current account deficits, currency revaluation, or the relationships between deficit spending, taxation, and inflationbut they were necessary to understand why Germany chose to start the war ineven though their own plans showed that they weren’t ready.

The question was one of practicalities. Eventually, England “divide wwges conquer” the continent and France revanchisme would be willing to revive the mortal era, hoped to be faded away since Far from being a mad nutcase, Hitler had a deep, even prescient, understanding of the strategic situation.

The Battle of Britain was, “in retrospect, an extremely one-sided affair”. Whatever else it was, Adolf Hitler’s short-lived regime was also a colossal destrucion process by which the wealth and productive power of much of Europe was wrenched from its normal wagss and converted into a machine for killing. While individual military goals made more sense even still-questionable ones like Barbarossafrom a practical standpoint Germany might as well have been trying to conquer the solar system.

Thus, initial German plans, in the wake of Operation Barbarossa, hte called for the starvation of a million “surplus population” of Slavs. Jul 20, Gwern rated it it was amazing. Thus, up to the end of the war, Hitler refused to raise taxes and mainly sought destructio mobilize savings through increased loans.

It destroys many of the myths in which the Nazi regime has been wrapped, and shows that it was neither the miracle of efficiency claimed by apologists for dictatorships, nor the irrational buffoonery projected by some of its critics. This was effectively the approach tried under the Weimar Republic. After having read this book, I don’t think Germany ever could have won, but they could have failed even more spectacularly than they did in real life.


But the persistent reader will be rewarded by a book which confirms that the final word on one of the defining events of the 20th century has probably not yet been written. If they are identified, it is usually on the basis of nefarious special interests hoping to get their narrow agendas satisfied. It is much more rare to see an analysis of the economic situation facing leaders and how this constrains their behavior.

It seems that men, despite all their hubris, cannot overcome the reality that prices set on a free market are the best way to allocate resources.

We need more books like Tooze’s that examine these things. The theme of Germany pushing its economy and society to the limit in an attempt to win the war quickly is brought home by comments like: Hitler reasoned that the advantage he had in would only diminish over time. tokze

The Wages of Destruction: In addition, at leastPolish forced laborers died in Germany. I had never realized that tanks were such a small percentage of the overall military budget, but as Tooze points out, aircraft gave by far the biggest bang for the buck.

Without delivering full employment Hitler risked being forced from power. It tried to remedy this through technology, but synthetic rubber and fuel plants which required a lot of coal never reached the point of providing all of Germany’s needs.

Covers the full Nazi economy and is filled with new insights. But they are there. Germany was an economic basket case when he took power, and the improvements he appeared to bring to the standard of living were illusory and unsustainable. However, the Nazi regimes resistance to devaluing their currency in order to stimulate exports in the face of a strengthening Reichsmark was not pursued for two reasons: Germany would never be able to create wealth for its impoverished populace via free trade.


Surprisingly, contrary to the Holocaust, the Hungerplan was not kept secret: This means that 1. As if from a commanding height, Tooze points out for the reader fields and factories and autobahns, the delusive investment in radios and passenger cars, the financial and credit market subterfuges of the s, and the scramble for military aircraft and battle tanks and ammunition.

Every Worker his Work. Oct 16, Denis Patterson rated it it was amazing. German Economic responses deflation led to domestic down turn and unemployment, opening the door for the nationalistic political right in Germany, of which the Nazis were members, to step into power. The story is that fascist Nazis linked arms with industry and created an unstoppable military. Operation Barbarossa sealed the fate of the third Reich because it was lack of resources that made victory against the Soviet Union impossible, because the Soviet Union was supplied by Britain tioze the US to supplement its resources.

Now we have already counted The Third Reich J.

Hitler’s gold

German leaders knew they could never compete with the empires of Britain and France, so they instead sought to align America’s interest with their own. Of course, America was generally known to have incredible industrial resources even before the war, and the fact te they were underutilised due to the Great Depression made it much easier to mobilize these resources for military purposes when needed.

Sep 17, Pieter rated it it was amazing Shelves: Western allies could squeeze Germany economically recall they were importers of key resources and there was only so much the State could do to keep the economy humming.

Hitler hoped that Ukraine would be the solution to the food problem, but Germany faced food rationing pretty much from pf outset of the war. Neat planes and cool tanks were replaced destriction the appreciation grand strategy and the details of battles.