Presentation on theme: "International relations 1919-1933 What happens to Germany and the Versailles-treaty?"— Presentation transcript:
International relations What happens to Germany and the Versailles-treaty?
International situation 1919 Same great powers as 1914 except _____ USA is strongest economically but decides to leave Europe to it self (isolationism) Britain and France weak economically but still world powers Russia weak and isolated but has potential. New government: Soviet socialist republic Germany weak and isolated but revanchist and has potential. New government: Weimar republic The eastern buffer zone: a power vacuum.
Prospects for the future In 1919 we have a flawed peace settlement, No agreed means of its enforcements A weak international system And then in 1930 we get the economic crisis
Key dates Paris Peace settlement 1921 Reparations fixed at 132 billion gold marks 1922 Treaty of Rapallo between Germany and USSR 1923 French occupation of the Ruhr 1924 Dawes Plan 1925 Locarno Treaty 1926 Germany enters the League of Nations 1929 Young plan, Wall Street Crash 1932 Reparations virtually abolished: 1933 Hitler comes to power.
USA European policy USA did not become a member of the League of nations. The Versailles treaty was not ratified and US withdrew its promise to help France in case of German attack. In spite of isolationism USA participated in the Dawes plan (1924) and the Young plan (1929) so they could get some of their war loans back. Did the US jump from its responsibilities?
British policy towards Germany Attempt to reconcile France and Germany in Genoa 1922 fail. Britain disapproves of the Ruhr occupation 1923 Britains policy victorious in the Locarno-Treaty, Belgium, France, Germany agree to respect their joint frontiers.
French policy towards Germany Tough stand to Occupation of Ruhr France did not get backing from Britain so they revert to policy of friendship: –Dawes, Locarno, Young. Tough again after 1931 –reject the German-Austrian customs union
USSR foreign policy Isolation –Western countries participated in Civil war –Russia not invited to Versailles –Bolsheviks instigated world revolution Rapollo treaty with Germany –Diplomatic relations and Germans allowed to build and test weapons in Russia. Cool relations with France and Britain.
What is the German Policy to 33 Germans had a hard time accepting a treaty that treated Germans as a defeated nation Stresemann's primary goals were 1) the protection of Germans abroad; 2) the readjustment of the eastern frontiers and 3) a union with German Austria.
International relations Economic depression hits Europe hard 1930 –Huge reduction in trade – customs barrier –Bancrupties and unemployment with accompanying social disruption –Nationalistic and fascist movements gather strength Japanese expansion in Asia
German foreign policy after 33 Hitler comes to power in 1933 His popularity is not least due to his aggresive ideas about foreign policy. He wants to make Germany strong again by: destroying the Versailles-treaty build upp the army unite Germans accquiring lebensraum in the east Dominance of the aryan race (space and race) Historians do not agree if these are new in German policy and if he planned a major war to obtain these aims. Brest-Litovsk was based on these principles
Breakdown of Versailles Leaves disarmament conference and league of nations oct 1933 Anti-agression pact with Poland 1934 Dollfuss assassinated by Austrian Nazis 1934 Saar votes to return to Germany 1935 Reintroduction of conscription march 1935 –Plans for rearmament extend back to Weimar (1932)
Weakness of France and UK France –Depression, eight governments 33-35, the army was defensive, no offensive or bombing capacity, pacifism. Britain –Small army busy overseas in empire, support for disarmament and league of nations. Taxes unpopular during depression. –Versailles unpopular –Britain wants to negotiate with Hitler
Anglo-German naval pact Dollfuss assassination got Italy, France and Britain to condemn Germany April 1935 at Stresa France and Russia sign a treaty of mutual assistance may 1935 Hitler made an naval pact with angry Britts, allowed 35% of British naval power – triple existing levels – France not consulted –So much for the united Stresa front –AGNP and the Abyssinian crisis alienated Mussolini
Mussolini and the Germans In 1934 M stopped a Nazi putch in Austria. Turning points in M attitude towards Germany: –Anglo-German naval agreement –M was displeased with the economic sanctions applied by the League of Nations after the invasion of Abbysina even if they were useless –Hitler did not criticize the invasion. –Both M and Hitler supported Franco in the Spanish civil war. –1936 Berlin-Rome axis Anti-comintern pact with Germany and Japan Pact of Steel.
Hitler takes action Mussolinis turn encourages Hitler Remilitarisation of Rhineland march 1936 –The western powers take no action Olympic games in Berlin 1936 Hossbach memorandum Anschluss with Austria march 1938 –Schuschnigg chancellor of Austria had announced a plebiscite after Nazis staged demonstration in all major cities. –Hitler decided to invade Austria
Appeasement Britain and later France try to avoid war with Italy and Germany by giving way to their demands. Time: Locarno to German occupation of Czechoslovakia in March 39. Munich sept 1938 is the high point. –Why? Avoid war at all cost (pacifism among the public) Rearmament is to expensive in depression The demands of Germany are reasonable Hitler is better than Stalin Use the peace for British rearmament
Munich: highlight of appeasement: Demonstrations in Sudetenland –Hitler wants to invade Czechoslovakia Sudetenland handed over to Germany at a four power conference in sept 1938 –Hitler, Mussolini, Chamberlain, Daladier –Czechs and Russians excluded The effect of appeasement and Munich –Hitler convinced of British and French weakness –Stalin suspects that the Western powers are giving Germany free play in Eastern Europe
1939 March - Germany occupies what is left of Czechoslovakia Public opinion in the west turns Britain promises to defend Pollands independence but are to slow to approach the USSR Hitler wants Danzig and the Polish corridor August 24 German-Russian non-agression pact Sept. 1. German invasion of Poland Sept. 3. Britain declares war against Germany.