Talk:Reichstag Fire Decree

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Please use Talk:Gleichschaltung for discussion. -- djmutex 2003-04-30

Where are you dJmutex?

Papen knowledge Deputy arrest:Negative[edit]

Alongwith the bland assertions within these articles comes this, from "nizkor project" from

During the cross-examination, Papen was asked whether he knew about the arrest and mistreatment of individual Communist and Social Democratic personages.Papen gave an essentially negative answer........
During the years of the National Socialist regime, we learned again and again that the knowledge of acts of violence remained restricted to the narrow circle of the direct participants mentioned to him.

This from Kuboschok, remember, is for the defence of Papen, but nevertheless it is revealing. Further on Kubuschok adds :

Thus, it seems to me absolutely explainable that Papen knew very little about the measures which, during the first months, were almost exclusively taken against political opponents of National Socialism coming from leftist circles. At any

[Page 223]

rate his knowledge did not go beyond the fact that, in this respect, arrests were made within the scope of the "Decree for the Protection of People and State".............

But knowledge of the arrest of those politicians is by no means connected eo ipso with the knowledge of the details and of the extent of the measures taken at that time......

It was a different matter, however, with the later encroachment on the rights of Church offices and organizations, which to a large extent appealed to him and which at once he energetically tried to help.........
In any case it is a decisive fact that the measures, as far as they were outside the law, were subject to the jurisdiction of the police and the Ministry of the Interior. The law itself is an emergency decree of Hindenburg's. It came about legally. The new broadened conception of protective custody does not in itself constitute a crime.

Fair use/educational/public as above from page following below this link

The measure of the decree seems to be ignorance then, lack of clarity at Nuremberg and equal ignorance now . I still see no reason to assert that any Deputy arrest and protective custody ( as the Trials show on-going from 6 March at Goering's in-judicial speech ) was legal. I do not believe, but do not know, that the Police in the Berlin, is it, district of Prussia , had power over Deputies beyond their Constitutional protections.It would appear that Papen equally knew of no such power over deputies . I have come to this conclusion from reading the Fire Act and the Enabling Ac Act neither of which relate to Reichstag Deputies or any part of that Institution......And 'dormancy' which Str1977 estimates as appearing either on 21 or 23 March is still hazy to me in contitutional terms. I repeat that Section 2 or the EAct protects Deputies as part of the Institution , and that this Decree seems to provide no Deputy arresting power either, which is why the dormany comes in, somehow, later . EffK 23:11, 7 December 2005 (UTC)

Goering,Concentration Camps and 'Protective Custody'[edit]

This Nuremberg Trials Document from:, fair-use/educational/public :

MR. JUSTICE JACKSON: After you came to power, you regarded it necessary, in order to maintain power, to suppress all opposition parties?

Goering: We found it necessary not to permit any more opposition, yes.

MR.TUSTICE JACKSON: And you also held it necessary that you should suppress all individual opposition lest it should develop into a party of opposition?


18 March 46

Goering: Insofar as opposition seriously hampered our work of building up, this opposition of individual persons was, of course, not tolerated. Insofar as it was simply a matter of harmless talk, it was considered to be of no consequence.

MR. JUSTICE JACKSON: Now, in order to make sure that you suppressed the parties, and individuals also, you found it necessary to have a secret political police to detect opposition?

Goering: I have already stated that I considered that necessary, just as previously the political police had existed, but on a firmer basis and larger scale.

MR. JUSTICE JACKSON: And upon coming to power you also considered it immediately necessary to establish concentration camps to take care of your incorrigible opponents?

Goering: I have already stated that the reason for the concentration camps was not because it could be said, "Here are a number of people who are opposed to us and they must be taken into protective custody." Rather they were set up as a lightning measure against the functionaries of the Communist Party who were attacking us in the thousands, and who, since they were taken into protective custody, were not put in prison. But it was necessary, as I said, to erect a camp for them -- one, two, or three camps.

MR. JUSTICE JACKSON: But you are explaining, as the high authority of this system, to men who do not understand it very well, and I want to know what was necessary to run the kind of system that you set up in Germany. The concentration camp was one of the things you found immediately necessary upon coming into power, was it not? And you set them up as a matter of necessity, as you saw it?

Goering: That was faultily translated -- it went too fast. But I believe I have understood the sense of your remarks. You asked me if I considered it necessary to establish concentration camps immediately in order to eliminate opposition. Is that correct?

MR. JUSTICE JACKSON: Your answer is "yes," I take it?

Goering: Yes.

MR. JUSTICE JACKSON: Was it also necessary, in operating this system, that you must not have persons entitled to public trials in independent courts? And you immediately issued an order that your political police would not be subject to court review or to court orders, did you not?

Goering: You must differentiate between the two categories; those who had committed some act of treason against the new state, or those who, might be proved to have committed such an act, were naturally turned over to the courts. The others, however, of whom


18 March 46

one might expect such acts, but who had not yet committed them, were taken into protective custody, and these were the people who were taken to concentration camps. I am now speaking of what happened at the beginning. Later things changed a great deal. Likewise, if for political reasons -- to answer your question -- someone was taken into protective custody, that is, purely for reasons of state, this could not be reviewed or stopped by any court. Later, when some people were also taken into protective custody for nonpolitical reasons, people who had opposed the system in some other way, I once, as Prussian Prime Minister and Reich Minister of the Interior, I remember...

MR. JUSTICE JACKSON: Let's omit that. I have not asked for that. If you will just answer my question, we shall save a great deal of time. Your counsel will be permitted to bring out any explanations you want to make.

You did prohibit all court review and considered it necessary to prohibit court review of the causes for taking people into what you called protective custody?

Goering: That I answered very clearly, but I should like to make an explanation in connection with my answer.

MR. JUSTICE JACKSON: Your counsel will see to that. Now, the concentration camps and the protective custody...

THE PRESIDENT: Mr. Justice Jackson, the Tribunal thinks the witness ought to be allowed to make what explanation he thinks right in answer to this question.

MR. JUSTICE JACKSON: The Tribunal thinks that you should be permitted to explain your answer now, and it will listen to your answers.

THE PRESIDENT: I did not mean that to apply generally to his answers. I meant it to apply to this particular answer.

Goering: In connection with your question that these cases could not be reviewed by the court, I want to say that a decree was issued through me and Frick jointly to the effect that those who were turned over to concentration camps were to be informed after 24 hours of the reason for their being turned over, and that after 48 hours, or some short period of time, they should have the right to an attorney. But this by no means rescinded my order that a review was not permitted by the courts of a politically necessary measure of protective custody. These people were simply to be given an opportunity of making a protest.

MR. JUSTICE JACKSON: Protective custody meant that you were taking people into custody who had not committed any crimes but who, you thought, might possibly commit a crime?


18 March 46

Goering: Yes. People were arrested and taken into protective custody who had not yet committed any crime, but who could be expected to do so if they remained free, ......

the trial considered the Nazi means of Propaganda. The above shows that the arrests were made under the frick/Goering/Hindenberg Courts Decree , avoiding necessity to bring complaining arrested persons to Court if subject to 'Political' or 'Secret' Police detention. However , constitutionally , I question whether this Courts Decree over-rode the Deputies sovereignty ........

Goering continues:

The arrests which you attribute to the Reichstag fire are the arrests of communist functionaries. These arrests, as I have repeatedly stated and wish to emphasize once more, had nothing to do with this fire. The fire merely precipitated their arrest and upset our carefully planned action, thus allowing several of the functionaries to escape.

MR. JUSTICE JACKSON: In other words, you had lists of Communists already prepared at the time of the Reichstag fire of persons who should be arrested, did you not?

Goering: We had always drawn up, beforehand, fairly complete lists of communist functionaries who were to be arrested. That had nothing to do with the fire in the German Reichstag.

MR. JUSTICE JACKSON: They were immediately put into execution -- the arrests, I mean -- after the Reichstag fire?

Goering: Contrary to my intention of postponing this action for a few days and letting it take place according to plan, thereby perfecting the arrangements, the Fuehrer ordered that same night that the arrests should follow immediately. This had the disadvantage, as I said, of precipitating matters.

Special Courts[edit]

relevant to the above comes this (fair-use/educational) from Samuel A. Fletcher On the Courts of the Third Reich:Servants or Opponents of National Socialism?

The last weapon available to the courts in their pursuit of Nazi justice was the use of Special Courts. These were courts that dated back to the Weimar Republic which were designed to try political criminals. Under the auspices of National Socialism, Special Courts became the prime machinery for speedy justice in the Reich. In the words of Supreme Court judge Otto Schwarz, the concept of Special Courts "fulfills the aim of punishing a crime... by letting the penalty follow upon the criminal act with the greatest possible thoroughness and speed, and at the lowest cost" (Mueller, p. 153-154). The conspicuous omission of fairness in such a statement is rather telling. Judges of the Special Courts were paid to deliver the verdicts sought for as quickly as possible. Public prosecutors enjoyed using the Special Courts when they believed that "swift sentencing... [was] called for in view of the depravity or the seriousness of the deed, public reaction to it, or the danger it posed to public order and safety"(Mueller, p. 157).

Fletcher seems to refer to Ingo Mueller, Hitler's Justice: The Courts of the third Reich (Cambridge, MA, 1991)

It appears that Wikipedia articles greatly err in suggesting that the Fire Decree effected the rigging of the Reichstag by the arresting of Deputies. it would appear that such little "legality" there was , came completely retro-actively, that 6 March can mark only the end of such arrests , whereas Goering above here confirms the arrests were brought forward following the Fire and began immediately after it. He states that this was to prevent the flight [into exile] of the Deputies. The Courts Decree was signed on the 21 March, allowing that political cases could avoid being brought to court.It came into effect,was it? after 48 hours. This was the protective custody, and confusion reigns due to the statements that the Fire Decree effected this.The constitutional situation is still not clear, and maybe User:Str1977 or some German user could investigate as to how this decree was signed : by Hindenburg , Frick and Goering or not, and how it might relate to the question remaining of dormancy achieved either through the Council of Elders of the Reichstag (un-named) or Frick alone, or the Reichstag in Session, whichever it is, as a purely procedural change as WP says . WP qualifies the Common Plan or Conspiracy as legal sometimes, and illegal elsewhere,following my intervention. It appears that the Trials are not altogther closer in their analysis , than the WP present contradiction. What is certain is that the 21 Decree is more relevant to legalities ,than the Fire Decree , but retro-actively. No wonder Papen claimed not to know.

EffK 20:30, 10 December 2005 (UTC)EffK 21:44, 10 December 2005 (UTC)

Special Courts in the Weimar Republic: 6 October 1931[edit]

Again from the Yale Avalon project: and concerning Special Courts imposition-

On authority of Chapter II of the Sixth Section of the decree of 6 October 1931...
Under the same supposition in the state of Austria and in the Sudeten German territories....
For the legal procedure the decree of 21 March 1933 (RGBl I, page 136) is applicable.

Here is the Yale record of a 21 March Decree effective from 24 march, after the Enabling Act and signed not by Frick or Goering but by Hitler: [[1]]

..basis of Chapter II, Part 6 of the third decree of the Reich President to safeguard economy and finances and to combat political excesses, of 6 October 1931 (Reichsgesetzblatt I pp. 537, 565)

and is presumably the recorded Special Courts Decree [mark 1] preceding as to 21 March 1933, or else there were two such Special Courts Decrees issuing ,

at: [[2]]

The legality itself of Deputy arrest chases back to 6 October 1931..... EffK 21:56, 10 December 2005 (UTC)

This 6 October Decree is not mentioned under Brüning or Hindenburg, and does not Google any text. I ask any passing Editor or reader to specify it, and to pay partcular attention to any anti-constitutional pro-rogation of Reichstag Deputy Sovereignty (as per Article 2 of the Enabling Act)it may or may not contain.

EffK 22:46, 10 December 2005 (UTC)

Un-Constitutionality of 1931 Decrees, from Arthur Rosenburg,1936 ( 1931 Death of Weimar)[edit]

However the decrees issuing under Bruning are focused upon by Weimar historian Arthur Rosenburg who states that :

On October 18, 1930, the majority in the Reichstag composed of Bruning's supporters and the Social Democrats resolved to refer the question of the[misuse as clear from previous pages] question of the emergency decrees to a special commission of the Reichstag and to pass to the order of the day without discussing the proposed vote of no confidence that lay upon the table. The Reichstag thus abandoned the struggle with the un-constitutional dictatorship of Bruning and his friends by majority vote . The same hour saw the death of the Weimar Republic. Since then one dictatorship has succeeded to another in Germany.

fair-use/educational from p 306 in Arthur Rosenburg(ex Berlin University Professor of History)'s A History of the Weimar Republic,1936, Methuen & Co.[Highlight EffK]

This returns us to the continuous un-constitutionality of Hindenburg's use of Decree 48, to which I shall add Rosenberg's completer analysis ,as the implication to WP and other history is considerable. EffK 23:11, 10 December 2005 (UTC)

ps where to insist on reversion of you-Str1977? Here or there at "Concepts"  ?

As both thid decree and the Enabling Act were issued under the Weimar Constitution, it is absurd to suggestt that the constitution was effectively irrelevant after 1933. It remained the legal basis for the regime.

Un-Constitutionality of Germany dating to October 1931, and the Neccessity for the Reichstag Fire[edit]

The Weimar onion burns the eyes. p302 of Rosenburg above :

The revolutionary movement in Germany in the Spring of 1930 was weakly and and inadequately represented by the KPD, the Left-wing SPD, and the Left-wing National Socialists. On the other hand , the counter-revolution was embodied in two powerful coalitions, Conservatives and Reichswehr and 'Hugenberg-Hitler'. The sole surviving champion of the republican constitution was the Right wing SPD . Future developements roughly followed the following course:The counter-revolution allowed the misled revolutionaries to destroy the Weimar Republic and then assumed power itself.[EffK]

The programme for a drastic reduction in national expenditure drawn up by Brüning was put into operation by means of emergency decrees signed by president von Hindenburg in accordance with the provisions of Article 48 of the Reich Constitution. His action was a flagrant breach of the Constitution. For Article 48 applied only to cases of armed revolt and its framers never contemplated that the normal legislative procedure of the Reichstag would be superseded by the President's right to issue emergency decrees. The counter-revolutionaries were fully aware that this action was un-constitutional. Unfortunately Article 48 had already been similarly abused in 1923 at the time of the stabilization of the mark. In 1928 the former Chancellor, Dr.Luther, published an account of the manner in which the currency was stabilised in which he wrote inter alia :

"On November 30, 1923, the new Government under Marx as Chancellor came into office. I was again Finance Minister . Since the new enabling Act was not available for immediate use, the necessary tax regulations were issued by means of Article 48 of the Reich Constitution. This Article confers upon the Reich President the right to issue decrees having the force of law. Obviously these decrees require a counter-signature of a Minister. It must be admitted that at the time these clauses (of Article 48) were drafted the authors only had in view police or other measures for ensuring public order. In reality, this Article proved extremely useful in times of urgent necessity in rendering possible the enforcement of economic measures, especially taxation."

Nothing could be clearer than this statement. the utilization of Article 48 for the purposes of economic and fiscal legislation is indeed un-constitutional but nevertheless 'very useful'..........

The leading Social democrats, who were convinced that the Socialist proletariat was too weak to embark upon open warfare, indulged themselves in hopes that the existing crisis would run the same course that had been followed by the crisis of 1923. They were prepared to tolerate the emergency decrees in a similar fashion to that in which they had formerly 'tolerated' the Enabling Act[ the original EAct ] . If Brüning in his struggle with Hitler and Hugenberg only contrived to avoid making any really serious mistake, it was possible- so they argued -that some fortunate concatenation of circumstances would permit of the rescusitation of the Weimar republic. These men forgot that in 1924 democracy in Germany was not rescued by their endeavours, but by the intervention of the new York Stock Exchange. In 1930-31, American financiers were neither willing nor able to rescue the Weimar Republic for a second time .

So:It seems plain enough that all the Decrees issued on and close to 6 October 1931 are un-constitutional, and it also seems equally clear, why the Reichstag had to burn . As ever Hitler is stepping ahead of us all, even now, with his simulation of armed revolt justifying its Gestapo-creation- response through the retro-spective un-constitutional link to a Special Courts decree of 6 October 1931.And Leaving the question as to its earlier un-constitutionality compromised by the provocateurship of the burning amidst 'armed revolt'. Thus does the 'provocatuer-ship' Reichstag Fire take Centre stage, with complete logical intention closing every last Republican constitutional door except for Article/Section 2 of the Enabling Act, and its sovereign protection for the representatives of the German people, answerable to no-one but the German people .

All fair use/educational from 1936 and earlier, provided as for explanation and source for future editing of all the Hitler related articles, as well as this very Article. Almost needless to say there was no more of an armed revolt by the arrested Communists than there was by the Nazis. Those prosecuted for the Fire were aquitted , but for the odd and disturbed 'lone' pastsy.

The illegality of Germany appears to be determinable at October 1931, with this allowance of a mere Commission to study the un-constitutionality of Hindenburg's Decrees .The effort of Hitler to over-come this very illegality is transparent ,as he would have carefully learnt the lessons of October 1931. The only probable decrees with any validity throughout these years would have been the 6 October 1931 Special Courts Decree( if there were an Armed Rebellion), and the Fire Decree (if there were an Armed Rebellion ). I still see no possible constitutional allowance for Deputy arrest whatever .Whether the Nuremberg Trials were aware of the continuing un-constitutionality is unclear, but it may explain the reticence at qualifying exact start to the Common Plan or Conspiracy. Un-constitutionality seems to encompass the entire Weimar Republic from ,well, October 1931. One could almost expect that the decree of that 6 day was aimed at none other than some National Socialist gangs, only to be proudly and ironically resurrected as seen above .

EffK 01:09, 11 December 2005 (UTC)

How can a country be illegal. A state maybe, if founded on treason, but nowadays that is no longer accepted. Was the Weimar Republic illegal (Scheidemann's proclamation certainly was), but switching back to your point:

I'm baffled how much weight you place on a book published in 1936, when things were in flux and sources not readily avaiable. Granted, it's a valid book but 70 years of scholarship have superseeded it. Apart from obvious problematic views, like that black and white description of revolutionary vs. counter-revolutionary.

Your argument also is unsound: the Weimar Constitution, Article 48, allowed for all these things. Luther talked about the drafter intention, but what matters is the text of the law which contains no such restrictions. Attempts of including such restrictions all failed (especially between 1925 and 1930).

Also, I'd like to inform you that the view of the Nazis burning the Reichstag is far from being an established fact. The basis for it is merely some bragging by Göring - and other evidence speaks against this theory. IMHO, it was really lone perpretrator Marinus van der Lubbe who set the building ablaze.

Str1977 14:45, 15 December 2005 (UTC)

I agree with Str1977.
One can argue that by his abdication, Kaiser Wilhelm II put an end to the imperial consitution — after all, it provided for leadership by a monarch, and his leaving created a vacuum not provided for by that constitution. Scheidemann's proclamation of the republic had no constitutional basis, but the same can be said of any of the other possible forms of government that were potential at that time — these ranged from the Sparticists establishing a soviet-style republic to the Reichswehr setting up a right-wing martial state. The vacuum created by the collapse of the monarchy was filled when the Weimar Constitution was approved by delegates elected by the people, providing the legal basis for the Republic. (Naturally none of this contradicts the fact that the Reichswehr and forces inside the Reichswehr worked to actively undermine the Weimar Republic, but they were not alone).
My reference to "Illegality" wasn't really in earnest, but merely a reaction of EffK's extreme preoccupation with issues of legality. Granted they are important in their own right, but he's overdoing it.
In the situation of 1918 of course the monarchy was the legal form of government (and in fact 37 monarchies). If I'm not mistaken, at that William had only abidicated (which is not an end to monarchy but only to his reign) as Emperor but not as King of Prussia. Ebert would have preferred to keep a parliamentary monarchy (and from hindsight, I can only agree with him), but the left-wing around Liebknecht wanted to proclaim a Socialist Republic and Scheidemann made his proclamation to forestall Liebknecht.
With respect to the Reichstag Fire, the only fact that historians agree on is that Marinus van der Lubbe was found in the building and claimed responsibility for setting the blaze. What is disputed, however, is whether he had assistance from the Nazis either in terms of supplying flammables or actually helping to set blazes. Few dispute the fact that the Nazi propaganda machine was able to use the fire to great effect — not only to whip up fear of a communist revolution in the hearts of the people, but to create a basis for the Reichstag Fire Decree and obtain legal authority to suspend civil liberties. — JonRoma 16:12, 15 December 2005 (UTC)
With respect to the RT Fire, I want to reference three theories found in my lecture notes (dated summer 2000):
1) Göring and a troop entered the building through an subterraennean way and set it all ablaze (Suisse historian Walter Hofer)
arguments: only Nazis had motives (says Hofer, it is rather: only Nazis profited from the fire), according to a thermodynamic study (unclear to me when this study was made) a single perpretrator couldn't have accomplished this, indirect witnesses (boil down to rumours)
2) loner Marinus van der Lubbe did it by himself (Hans Mommsen, Fritz Tobias, allmost consensus - detailed reconstruction of events)
arguments:Marinus credible, as he had set fire three times before, RT Fire Decree was not waiting in a drawer, but had to be drawn up out of nowhere, with some disputes in the government, there was no general plan, while the idea of a Communist coup was present anyway
3) In 1999 Jürgen Schmeidike (HZ 269, page 203) Der Reichstagsbrand in neuem Licht argued, based oonly Nazis profited from the fire files of the trial and pre-trial research, that there was a cooperation between Nazis and National-Conservatives to cover up the Osthilfeskandal. So he rejects both the thesis of a lone perpetrator as well as the Nazi grand scheme.
What is certain is that Marinus was found in the building and that he claimed to have done it. Since he was an independent Communist this was certainly not the Comintern-plot the Nazis made out of it. Dimitroff was charged with the fire, but acquitted.
Hitler's friend Hanfstängl reported that Goebbels and Hitler at first didn't believe the news about the fire. This would exclude thesis 1, but not thesis 3.
Str1977 16:56, 15 December 2005 (UTC)

FK. It, Rosenberg, is not my POV , so get off my case with this innuendo about illegality. Shirer says that the Tribunal was satisfied "beyond all reasonable doubt" that it was the Nazis. That the amount of combustible materials to achieve the result was beyond the packet of matches/ shirt the lone half wit had had etc etc. That he was found loitering out-side. That he was under arrest for days prior, having been drunkenly bragging of his intentions. I agree that Hitler was surprised, by the pre-emption of the plan by initiative taken against his readiness. I do not know more as to this last, but it may be revealed, that it was Goering for sure-who arrived first, had access etc. I might have a bunch of source in fact, and may stick with this,

FK.I can source Presidential Dictatorship , I have , but I shall retrieve it again. A contrary source is required to knock it. Rosenberg is Rosnberg is Rosenberg. I understand your constitutional assertions,Str1977, however Rosenberg is the operative source . None deny that these last 4 administrations existed in this un-constitutional use of 48 , and you had better provide source that says it was constitutional that it is not Str1977 original research . You may produce the text of the article, but by the rules you set at me, you also have to produce a published relevant interpretation over-turning and parallel to Rosenberg. Roesenberg source of Dr.Luther cannot be removed , and Rosenberg is beyond reproach as source, whatever anybody here says , and his foundational text is source to following source. Go way wid ye...

FK. I think Shirer c p 242/243 is sufficient source for beyond reasonable doubt, and we can safely ignore Str1977's humble opinion or anyone else's .

...and Rudolf Diels , the gestapo Chief, added in an affidavit that 'Goering knew exactly how the fire was to be started' and had ordered him 'to prepare, prior to the fire, a list of people who were to be arrested immediately after it.'

FK.General Franz Halder is the source for Goering's bragging. Shirer it is who repeats the findings of the Leipzig trial as to the large quantities of fuel and chemicals etc. Reasonable is fairly irksome maybe, but still reasonable .

FK. I do not think we have to detain the text with un-sourced opinions whosoever feels them here-please. It must be reported at least as beyond reasonable doubt, whilst oher pith os source may be include-able as produced.

FK. User:str1977 directed me to his talk here to justify his removal of Presidential Dictatorships at Nazi ..Concepts... I repeat for both Artcles, every article, the above constitutional requirement for actual Source to prevent his opinion being Oiginal research. I find it contradictory that I am constantly accused of t this, along with serious charges of POV pushing. Obey the rules you, please. Now.

FK. Where is Djmutex- does he Djay, and is he having a better time doing that? I shall put up the quote for Presidential Dictatorship, OK ? EffK 19:29, 15 December 2005 (UTC)

Counter Revolution as concept[edit]

This concept is very clear, unlike the fuzziness brought on by modern historiography . At any rate it is sourceable. The concept/epithet of conservative is quite different .

Counter revolution I do not believe exists in sole polar contrast to the brief "German revolution" (which hit poor Ludwig Kaas so hard !!!!!-what the ...!!! ) , but clearly exists to embrace all the opposite forces to those leading towards or from such. EffK 19:39, 15 December 2005 (UTC)

Deputies Absent[edit]

Seems to me there is something lacking in this article- deputies were not absent- or are we Nazis that we call them so? They were re-classified as absent. Torture, un-constitutional imprisonment and murder are not absentee-ism. And, deputy sovereignty is off topic to civil liberties . Come on , as it is ,this is clearly neither strictly on topic nor strictly honest. I cannot help, due to the enforcements against my editing such as the following evidence where I refer you to my response of a few days ago at 15 December [[3]], EffK 09:19, 21 December 2005 (UTC)

Fire theory[edit]

I thought I had heard that the Communists (or the one lone radical) set the fire, but it only burned down the building because the Nazis knew about his plans and had placced accelerants around the building?

added the USA patriot act to the See also section[edit]

I think it is relevant and similar in nature.Vegasjon 09:26, 17 October 2007 (UTC)

I don't think it is at all relevant to the Reichstag Fire Decree - the two are on the face wholly unrelated. While you may claim the two events occured under similar circumstances, I think you need some sort of peer-reviewed source to link to, where that claim could be better examined. Even so, I haven't seen many other history pages on wikipedia discussing "events similar in nature occurring under similar circumstances". I'm going to delete the reference, though if you think I am completely off-base and put it back, I won't complain. michael 01:38, 12 November 2007 (UTC)
The Reichstag Fire Decree 'nullified many of the key civil liberties of German citizens' after a terrorist attack. The Patriot Act is similar in that respect. Obviously, it's not a suspension of the constitution or an overt change to the bill of rights but it is an erosion of civil liberties regardless of how you feel about it's usefulness as a tool in the war on terrorism. If you're looking for differences, you could say that the reichstag fire was possibly staged and that the Patriot Act does include useful provisions for improving communications between gov. entities, whereas the fire decree had no provisions other than a suspension of civil liberties. Anyway, I appreciate your difference in opinion and will not add the reference back baring some support from others, in the talk section, for it's inclusion.Vegasjon 01:52, 15 November 2007 (UTC)

Woah... heh, while I am no proponent of the Patriot Act, I'm shocked this has stayed for, what, a year-and-a-half? I guess nobody reads this article. Anyway, sorry, that is waaaay POV. And frankly, to spout forth with my POV, it's probably overstating the case a lot, and this sort of sensationalism could undermine legitimate criticisms of the Patriot Act.

Anyway, my opinion's not important. I am removing this from the See Also section. -- (talk) 17:51, 23 March 2009 (UTC)

Setpember 11, 2001 happened and a month later, the Patriot Act was introduced in the House. The Reichstag Fire happened and when was this decree decreed? I do not know, but I bet it was less than a month later. It sure seems like a reasonable guess that both of these sets of words were ready to go before their respective excuses for publication came to pass. This is not provable though, and it isn't why I would like to see (and may just write) a good comparison between the two. I'm not qualified to write it now, but has a copy of the Patriot Act. Hey, after reading that, I may just have read more law (proposed or otherwise) than Congress!

The two edicts are similar, no matter who you call a terrorist and who you call a freedom fighter. No matter when (or how often) you switch the labels around. No matter how often you switch from Eurasia to Eastasia. No matter how readily the people rip down the posters of the "wrong" enemy. It is beyond doubt that they are related. They are elements of a pattern, doomed to be repeated by those who remain ignorant of it. But hey, let's talk about more important things, like Snooki. (talk) 20:09, 10 September 2010 (UTC)

I've removed the reference to the USA PATRIOT Act because it is dissimilar from the Reichstag Fire Decree. I've left other American references intact. The Espionage Act of 1917 has been used as a governmental tool against American socialists and communists. Communist registration acts, like the Reichstag Fire Decree, are anti-communist. Rex 84 involves the suspension of a constitution. (anonymous, 21 July 2011) — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 05:45, 21 July 2011 (UTC)

The US Patriot Act is very similar. It is a dictatorial decree, issued after a terrorist attack, ostensibly designed to deal with the aftermath of the attack, but actually used to suppress political opposition. Very similar indeed. The major differences are how much slower the Patriot Act was passed (due no doubt to greater German efficiency, and the vast size of the America legislation), and that the German decree was used mostly on internal opponents, and the American on overseas opponents.

The Patriot Act is not a decree, nor was it issued by a dictator. It is a legislative enactment passed by two directly elected bodies, and it was signed into law by an indirectly elected head of state. And what political opposition has it been used to suppress? What parts of the U.S. Constitution did the Patriot Act suspend? This article, which I am sure many people have read and many people will read in the future, needs to maintain a neutral point of view. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 03:51, 14 November 2012 (UTC)

IMO, listing the USA PATRIOT Act in the "See also" section of the Reichstag Fire Decree article is highly POV w/r/t current US politics. On that basis, I am going to remove the link, and I recommend that it should not be added back unless reliable secondary sources can be cited comparing / contrasting the PATRIOT Act with the Reichstag Fire decree. If others insist on adding the link back without citing sources, I suggest the question should be referred to a suitable forum for dispute resolution. — Richwales (no relation to Jimbo) 18:31, 14 August 2014 (UTC)

Emotive and POV language[edit]

Surely "the Nazis were able to throw millions of Germans into a convulsion of fear at the threat of Communist terror" is over the top for Wikipedia?