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Weimar‘s foreign policy, 1922-29 Lecture 10 10 April 2012 HIST2133. The Weimar Republic through Documents, 1918-1933.

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Presentation on theme: "Weimar‘s foreign policy, 1922-29 Lecture 10 10 April 2012 HIST2133. The Weimar Republic through Documents, 1918-1933."— Presentation transcript:

1 Weimar‘s foreign policy, Lecture April 2012 HIST2133. The Weimar Republic through Documents,

2 Genoa Conference (1922) USA & UK invited G + SU to discuss reparations & EU economic problems: F rejected participation to avoid discussing reparations Separate Treaty of Rapallo between G + SU (‘the outsiders’): No mutual claims from wartime + new diplomatic relations = Strategic success of G but worsening relations with West = Strong mistrust by F & GB vs. ‘Ghost of Rapallo’

3 Improving foreign relations Dawes Plan & London Conference (1924) Acceptance by French PM Herriot → evacuation of Ruhr (1925) Signing of Locarno treaties (1925)

4 Stresemann’s policy Realistic assessment of G position: Accepted war defeat + dependence on Allies Rejected nationalism & confrontation as harmful Strived to convince Allies of G’s will for peace & for cooperation & for mutual understanding Tried to have Versailles Treaty revised = Aimed at renewed big-power position for G

5 Stresemann’s security policy Aimed at peaceful understanding with F to end Ruhr occupation + to have Versailles Treaty revised His secret notes to F + GB to achieve guarantee treaties on basis of given territorial situation in West F generally positive but demanded guarantee treaty also in East (PL) →

6 Locarno Conference (1925) German-Allied Security Conference Treaty of Mutual Guarantee: Inviolability of G’s western borders (G, F, B, GB, I) → G accepted De-militarisation of Rhineland + gave up permanently Alsace-Lorraine (F) & Eupen- Malmedy (B) Treaties of Arbitration (G with B, F, PL, CZ) → G vs. PL renounced border changes by force but no ‘Eastern Locarno’


8 Locarno Treaties: Results Most important positive event in foreign politic for Europe since war (Oct 1925): → End of G moral & political isolation + return as leading European power with enhanced foreign policy options → G as permanent member of League of Nations (Sep 1926) → Positive repercussions for G expected too quickly but only successively

9 Treaty with Soviet Union Strong mistrust in SU on G’s turn to West (Locarno) > Stresemann’s parallel talks > Treaty of Berlin (Apr 1926) = Mutual neutrality in case of outside & non- provoked attack on SU or G = Mutual non-participation in economic & financial boycotts vs. SU or G



12 Relations with Poland No ‘Eastern Locarno’ (1925): No guarantee of G-PL borders by any power Treaty of Berlin further pressured on PL Stresemann’s hoped for PL’s economic & financial collapse but PL saved by F No concessions by PL vs. G: Valuable access to Baltic + nationalist sentiments = Eastern border still open wound for G

13 Relations with France ‘Spirit of Locarno’ as good start Hopeful meeting of Stresemann & Briand to solve economic problems in mutual interest but rejected in both countries (Sep 1926) Briand-Kellogg Pact to outlaw aggressive wars with ca. 60 signatories as major success of Stresemann (1928) Minor developments & general stagnation after 1928

14 Stresemann’s merits 6 years of foreign politics under difficult conditions: Combined peace & revision policies Paved way for peaceful alteration of post-war order + brought G out of isolation Bettered considerably relations of G with former enemies Achieved UK + US support Realistic attitude & ready to accept compromises = Improved position of G in international politics

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