In discussions of Third Reich terror, one controversial issue has been the degree to which the ‘ordinary German’ population experienced terror, and if this terror could adequately account for the Germans’ complicity, cooperation, or collaboration with the Nazi Party. In other words, should ordinary German citizens be largely exempt from guilt of the Holocaust because they themselves lived in a state of fear of arrest, imprisonment, and death? This article explains how there existed two Nazi societies during the Third Reich, one marked by extreme terror and the other of minimal, if any, terror.

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