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            The Growth and Implementation of Hitler's Continental Expansionist Foreign.
             One of the most interesting historiographical debates about the Second.
             World War concerns the nature of Hitler's foreign policy. Everyone knows.
             that the Second World War was horrible, even worse than the First, but it.
             has yet to be unequivocally decided what exactly was Hitler's role in.
             bringing about such a catastrophe. The most important issue relates to the.
             question of whether or not Hitler had evolved a clear and coherent foreign.
             policy by the time he assumed office and to which he was to adhere until his.
             suicide in the bunker. Historical scholarship has produced two main.
             differing schools of thought on this subject, known as intentionalists and.
             structuralists. The intentionalists argue that Hitler did indeed have a.
             clear foreign policy program when he became Chancellor in January 1933. He.
             had formulated this strict set of ideas several years earlier, and he.
             consciously followed this plan throughout his twelve years in power. The.
             structuralists counter this by arguing from several angles that Hitler was.
             an unprincipled optimist with a central concern in "propaganda exploitation.
             and the protection of his own prestige." (1) That he was subject to.
             pressures from elite groups and therefore not a free agent able to follow.
             any clear design. And finally that foreign policy has to be seen as a form.
             of social imperialism, an outward conveyance of domestic problems. All of.
             which reject any possibility of coherent intention or program in Nazi.
             Germany's foreign policy.(2) The ferocity of this debate, perhaps best.
             personified by the AJP Taylor, Trevor-Roper duels, has only increased the.
             stubbornness of each side, and impeded any sort of configuration of a middle.
             group.(3) It seems almost impossible to prove that any side can be.
             completely and inequivocally correct due to the vast amount of sometimes.
             contradictory statements made by Hitler which can be used by both sides.

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