A new narrative of the rise and catastrophic fall of the Nazi regime: a twelve-year descent into barbarism, genocide and aggressive war that cost over 50 million lives. On 30 January 1933, Adolf Hitler was appointed the German Chancellor of a coalition government by President Hindenburg. In a few months he installed a dictatorship, jailing and killing his leftwing opponents, terrorising the rest of the population and driving Jews out of public life. He embarked on a crash programme of militaristic Keynesianism, reviving the economy and achieving full employment through massive public works, vast armaments spending and the cancellation of foreign debts. After the grim years of the Great Depression, Germany seemed to have been reborn as a brutal and determined European power intent on avenging the mythical 'stab in the back' that had led to defeat in 1918. As Frank McDonough shows in this masterly popular history of the years from 1933 to 1939, Hitler won over most of the population to his vision of a renewed Reich. But what drove Hitler was also the fatal flaw of his regime: a relentless belief in war as the motor of greatness, a dream of vast conquests in Eastern Europe and an astonishingly fanatical racism. In these years of domestic triumph, cunning manoeuvres, playing neighbouring powers off against each other and biding his time, we see Hitler preparing for the moment that would realise his ambition. The first volume ends after Germany's comprehensive military defeat of Poland in 1939. It was the culmination of a series of triumphs for Hitler from 1933 to 1939.