The Night of the Long Knives: Hitler's Brutal Consolidation of Power

TLDR The Night of the Long Knives was a pivotal moment in Nazi Germany's rise to power, as Hitler brutally eliminated his enemies within the party, solidifying his control and the cult of Hitler. This bloody faction fight resulted in the suspension of civil liberties, the formation of a totalitarian state, and widespread public approval of Hitler's actions.

Timestamped Summary

00:00 The Night of the Long Knives was a bloody faction fight within the Nazi party in 1934, marking a significant moment in their rise to power.
05:07 The conservative elites bring Hitler in as chancellor in 1933, leading to a wave of violence, the suspension of civil liberties, and the formation of a totalitarian state in Germany.
09:48 Hitler is struggling to balance his image and control the SA, the stormtroopers, who are causing disorder in the streets but are also essential for maintaining Nazi control.
14:18 Hitler's loyalty to Ernst Ruhm, despite his controversial behavior, is tested when Ruhm suggests that the SA should replace the traditional army, leading to tensions and the possibility of Ruhm plotting against Hitler.
18:51 Hitler's power base includes the police, the army, and the emerging power center of the SS, and he is anxious about the army's loyalty.
23:33 Hitler's vice chancellor, Frans von Papen, gives a speech that is seen as a threat to Hitler, leading to a summit meeting with Hindenburg and the head of the army where they tell Hitler to bring his party and movement to order or else the army will take action, while at the same time the Gestapo and police falsely inform Hitler that Ernst Ruhm and the stormtroopers are planning a coup against him, prompting Hitler to decide to crush all his enemies.
27:58 Hitler rushes away from a wedding reception, goes back to his hotel, puts the army on alert, and prepares to deal with both the stormtroopers and the conservatives in what will become the Night of the Long Knives.
32:20 Hitler arrives in Munich, where there are rumors of a confrontation between the stormtroopers and the rest of the party, and he immediately takes action by arresting and imprisoning the local leaders of the SA.
36:44 Hitler hesitates to order the shooting of Ernst Röhm, the leader of the SA, because it reflects badly on his choice of personnel, while Göring in Berlin goes through lists of people to shoot, including General Schleicher, his wife, and other old order people, resulting in the deaths of about 85 people.
41:15 Hitler orders the shooting of Ernst Röhm, but after 10 minutes of no shots, they come back in and shoot him, and Hitler later justifies the killings with a retrospective law.
45:26 The German people are largely happy with Hitler's crackdown on the SA, as they viewed them as thugs and bullies, and the army sees Hitler as the leader and binds themselves to him through an oath of loyalty, leading to a plebiscite where 90% of the public approves Hitler as the head of state, government, and leader of the Nazi party, solidifying the cult of Hitler and the concept that he is Germany itself.
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