One of the most important trials of the 20th Century was one that almost no one outside of Germany ever heard of. It was the trial of Adolf Hitler and several associates for their feeble and unsuccessful effort to overthrow the Weimer government of Germany in what has come to be known as the Beer Hall Putsch of 1923.
The trial that followed the failed Putsch was, however, a great success for Hitler and his followers as Hitler was given every opportunity to use the trial as a propaganda vehicle to generate support among the masses throughout Germany. The prosecutors and judges cooperated with Hitler’s misuse of the trial, and Hitler made the most of his opportunity to claim credit for what proved to be a popular uprising. Hitler received a slap on the wrist sentence of confinement, just long enough to wear “a martyr’s crown of thorns,” but short enough to allow him to return to politics more emboldened and more popular.