I know the title seems a little inflammatory, but it is not. I was bored this weekend, and a friend and I were discussing politics and society. He is of Germanic descent, but spent most of his life in North America. Anyway, enough preamble, the conversation got around to his ancestors growing up in Nazi occupied land. One thing he said sort of caught me off guard, but made sense when I stepped back from my inital shock. He said that Hitler was a tremendous leader and did a lot of good for uniting and restructuring Germany, despite having incredibly warped genocidal tendencies. We all know about the Holocaust, and how devastated the German economy became during that time, but was he right about anything? What I was wondering was if anyone (German or of German descent) had any other input on this? How do modern day Germans feel about their recent history? I think that moreso than the occupied countries, Germans had to bear the weight of Hitler's psychosis for decades. Is there anything that he did, or systems he put in place that are essential to modern Germany? And I am not looking for views on the Holocaust, as we all know how horrible that was. I was thinking a little less sensational than that. Social programs, universities, etc.