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Analysis: Nazi Nobleman
The reality of this trope is far more complicated than the trope itself.

You might think that eugenics, Social Darwinism and reverence for the ancient tradition of Jew-bashing would be a perfect match for a system of hereditary privilege, but in practice this trope was often averted in Real Life. Nazism, while anti-democratic and racist, was a strongly egalitarian (among "Aryans", at least) and meritocratic populist movement when it came to traditional social class lines, and aristocrats found no special place in Nazism. While the old nobility were not keen on democracy, they were a class of themselves, and usually strongly disdained the "plebeian" Nazi party, which they often considered as rabble risen from the gutters. The majority of the 20 June 1944 conspirators to kill Hitler were noblemen. For the Nazi's part, the feeling was mutual, with many holding the aristocratic Prussian nobility who lost the First World War in nothing but contempt. When the deposed Wilhelm II sent a letter to Hitler expressing his hope that the monarchy would be restored, Hitler simply remarked to his valet, "What an idiot!"

With regards to the military proper (as opposed to the SS), it was more sympathetic to the old traditions and had a number of old-style nobility in it who were Just Following Orders. This was a great bother to Adolf Hitler who couldn't get along without them but absolutely hated officers; partly because he had once been an enlisted man (during WW1 the German officer corps was made up almost entirely of Prussian nobility), partly because they often had minds of their own within the confines of their profession, and partly because they deflected loyalty away from him.

To start with, Nazism was, from beginning to end, a populist, grassroots movement, and German aristocrats were opposed to the involvement of the common people in politics as a matter of principle. In fact, one of - if not the - largest anti-semitic argument made by the Nazis was that Jews were greedy elitists. Indeed, the German and especially the Austrian professional/upper-middle classes (the highest class of society besides the gentry and the industrialists) at the time was dominated by Jews; 70% of lawyers and 50% of doctors in Vienna were Jews, and one would be hard-pressed in either country to find a gentile theater director. The Rothschilds were a wealthy German-Jewish banking family. The Nazis held mass rallies and recruited ordinary Germans into paramilitary organizations like the SA and the SS; noblemen loathed the idea of mass rallies (or mass-anything, really), and were genuinely worried about the fact that the Nazi paramilitary organizations did not recruit their officers from the ranks of the aristocracy, as the German Army had traditionally done. And, of course, the more political power Hitler concentrated in his own hands, the less power was left to go around for everyone else.The Nazis also sought to not merely compete for political power, but to replace traditional focuses of loyalty; in effect, Nazis and the Aristocracy were competing for the same space and in that sense were more natural adversaries than natural allies. Indeed, one of the Nazi movement's early targets were the aristocratic upper-class Prussian generals who had led Germany to defeat in World War I.

Hitler capitalized on popular disgust with the aristocratic leadership of Wilhem's Imperial Germany, which they scapegoated as incompetent generals who had signed the Treaty of Versailles even though the loyal German army was "winning". This stems from the technicality that the aristocratic generals surrendered before the front lines had actually been pushed back into Germany itself - when they'd exhausted their last reserves of troops in the last desperate offensive of 1918, and with more American reinforcements coming in every day, they realized that defeat was inevitable and it made no sense to keep fighting. Many Germans were so demoralized by the defeat that they defiantly refused to acknowledge this.

So, even though many among the German and Austrian nobility partially or wholly agreed with Nazism's assessment of "lesser races" and were eager to re-assert German military strength in Europe, they generally resented Hitler's appeal to the masses and lack of regard for tradition. Some of them also felt that Hitler was incompetent, and that his war strategy was disastrous, and although some aristocrats had low opinions of non-Germans, most were thoroughly disgusted by Nazi racial extermination policies. As a result, aristocrats were disproportionately involved in military plots against Hitler.

At the same time, Nazis did woo the nobility - with considerable success. One important reason the SA, the militia that Nazis relied heavily early on in their history, was suppressed by Hitler (with their leaders summarily killed off in the Night of Long Knives and the rest of organization made insignificant) was because it was deemed too crass and rowdy to be viewed favorably by the upper classes. In order to gain credibility with the "respectable" classes, like the nobility, it had to disappear from the sight. In its place, the SS gained more influence and, specifically, to make it more respectable, Paul Hauser, a highly regarded regular army general, was brought in to organize and train its military branch, the Waffen-SS, with proper military discipline. By 1938, a fifth of all SS officers were noblemen. High-born noble families were particularly prone to Nazism: between one third and one half of all eligible people with princely titles joined the Nazi party. And, of course, the Nazi Wehrmacht was built out of the earlier German armies, so they inherited all of the officers wholesale, including a bunch of aristocratic officers, natch.

There are many reasons that this trope keeps recurring, but some of the main factors include confusing Imperial Germany with Nazi Germany, simple prejudice against aristocracy, a desire to include cool titles and ancestral castles, and assuming that everyone who opposes democracy does so for exactly the same evil reasons (also the reasoning behind Commie Nazis). Another problem is that superficially, the Nazi ideology of "Racial Superiority" sounds like something that ought to dovetail neatly with aristocratic superiority. Unfortunately, writers who focus too much on "official" Nazi ideology tend to miss the fact that the popularity of the Nazi party was also driven by envy, resentment, and fears of inferiority. At the same time, Himmler did see the endogamous practices of the nobility as a model of eugenics.

The reaction to a trope can become a trope itself. Of course, Imperial Germany led to Nazi Germany, and the German Army fought a genocidal war of extermination for the Third Reich. Both of these rather obvious points have been de-emphasized in - not merely German - public discourse, thanks in part to the early entrance of post-war West Germany into the Western bloc.

To some extent, this trope also applies to the British nobility. A small number of the British aristocracy were sympathetic to the Nazis. Unfortunately, the handful that were sympathetic were also the ones everyone remembers, often because they were very good at marketing themselves. This means that there are a lot of Britons out there who are wrongly convinced, and often convinced beyond dissuasion, that the aristocrats were all Nazis. Ironically, Winston Churchill was himself the grandson of a duke, and numerous other members of Churchill's administration were similarly high-born (although only two or three titled aristocrats were members of Churchill's War Cabinet, many if not most were related to Peers in some way—politics being a common pursuit for younger sons of aristocrats). Even among the British aristocrats who did have far-right, quasi-fascist leanings, most were such knee-jerk British jingoists they loathed the Nazis anyway (a prime example being Lord Redesdale, aka David Freeman-Mitford, whom his communist daughter Jessica called "one of nature's fascists" but who only accepted his Nazi daughter Unity's fraternization with Hitler when he persuaded them he was a thorough Anglophile—and promptly went back to hating Germans after the beginning of the war).

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