On assuming power in 1933 the first people the Nazis targeted for summary arrest and incarceration were political opponents – primarily communists, trade unionists and social democrats. It was the Nazi’s fierce opposition to communism which tempted traditional conservatives like President Hindenburg to invite them into government as a ‘least worst option’ to combat the threat from Bolshevism.
Dachau, the first Nazi concentration camp, was built to imprison political opponents, such as communists. The Communist Party (KPD) was banned in March 1933, trade unions were disbanded in May and the Social Democrats (SPD) abolished in June. Leaders of these parties and unions were arrested or fled into exile.
- read the collected letters of Marian Serejski in I am healthy and I feel fine who was held as a political prisoner in Auschwitz