Berlin – Krolloper

Berlin’s Krolloper was built in the mid-nineteenth century at Tiergarten, about 500 meters from the Reichstag. It was used for various cultural purposes but after the Reichstag fire in late February 1933 it was used as a seat for the german (Nazi) parliament. The reason why the Nazis chosed Krolloper as the parliament’s meeting place was partly due to its geographical location and partly due to the large number of seats. On March 23, 1933, the parliament passed the Power of attorney law that gave Hitler right to enforce decisions without Reichstag’s approval. At that time, several of the socialist and communist parliamentarians had, as a consequence of the Reichstag fire, been arrested and put in custody and could not participate in the vote. Other members did not venture to the Reichstag in fear of arrest.

From December 1933, all seats were held by the Nazis and Krolloper became just a symbolic place for the parliament (Nazis). The only times the parliament assembled were to listen to Hitler or vote in Hitler’s favor. Famous speeches that Hitler gave in Krolloper were the 30th of January 1939 speech when Hitler warned international Judaism that a new world war would mean the end of the Jewish race. Hitler declared war on the United States on December 11, 1941 in Krolloper. In this speech, he accused President Roosevelt of being mentally ill. The last time the parliament assembled in Krolloper was on April 26, 1942, when the parliament appointed Hitler as the supreme judge of Germany with the right to change the verdict of the courts. Krolloper were badly damaged in the final stages of the war and in 1951 the remaining ruins were demolished.

Current status: Demolished with information board (2011).

Location: 52° 31'06.70 N 13° 22'04.48 E

Get there: Metro to Bundestag Station.

My comment:

One might wonder what would have happened to Krolloper if it had been renovated after the war. It had actually been Nazi Germany’s political stronghold with a parliament that was completely subordinated to Hitler. But it has nevertheless been overshadowed by both the Reichstag and the new Reichstag. I think the Germans themselves do not mind that Krolloper is gone, in this way, one has never had to face the problem of how the memory and information of Krolloper would be preserved in a satisfactory manner. Now it was enough to establish an information board on the site.

Follow up in books: Kershaw, Ian: Hitler – A Biography (2008).