The Nazi resettlement bureaucracy and the Baltic states of Estonia and Latvia / by Thomas E. Spring.
Much recent attention has been paid to the manner by which the Nazi administrative system performed its functions and to what extent it was bent to the Führer's will, crystallized in the dispute between “intentionalist” and “functionalist” interpretations. While these interpretations are valuable, the Nazi system also functioned by practices of bureaucratic behavior and policy that mirror administrative procedure common to all bureaucracies. A useful illustration of these procedures can be discovered by using the manner by which the resettlement bureaucracy of the Third Reich, both those Party, State, and SS agencies under the control of Heinrich Himmler, Reichsführer of the SS, undertook the resettlement of the Baltic Germans from Estonia and Latvia and also the attempt by the German occupation authorities of Estonia and Latvia to implement racial selection policy in the Baltic States. What is revealed by an examination of the SS-led Einwandererzentralstelle (Resettler Central Office), and the attempt to implement the Deutsche Volksliste (German People's List) in occupied Estonia and Latvia are salient characteristics of the Nazi bureaucratic system which can be extended to an examination of bureaucracies in general. Furthermore, this examination also provides evidence of the growth of SS power in the Party and State systems of the Third Reich during the Second World War, most particularly the increasing influence of the secret and security police organs of the SS over the resettlement processes and procedures.
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