Presentation on theme: "Chronology of Boxed Section March 1936Rhineland July 1936 - 39 Spain March 1938Anschluss October 1938Munich 1920s – 1939Overview (8 marker) Issues:Factors."— Presentation transcript:
Chronology of Boxed Section March 1936Rhineland July 1936 - 39 Spain March 1938Anschluss October 1938Munich 1920s – 1939Overview (8 marker) Issues:Factors shaping Government reaction to events i.e. the use of appeasement -political - economic - military -public opinion - dilemmas (public and private concerns of the government at the time which influenced how they dealt with issues at the time
What happened?Government reactionPublic opinion Rhineland Crisis March 1936 On 7th March 1936 Hitler moved 22,000 troops into Rhineland - previously demilitarised under Versailles Treaty. Hitler had broken Versailles and Locarno Treaties. Britain and France did not take action against Hitler. Britain did not want to be dragged into a war arising out of Franco- German hostility Britain succeeded in preventing France retaliating. Majority view Treaty of Versailles was out of date. It needed revision. It was too harsh on Germany. Rhineland belonged to Germany. Germans had gone into own backyard. German action was not the same as Italian aggression against Abyssinia. It is not a serious matter to cause a war. Minority view Germany had broken Versailles and Locarno. Hitler should be stopped now before he gets too strong. Rhineland was German. Treaty should be revised. French antagonised the Germans with their Pact with the Russian. Not worth fighting for. Government did nothing except make a formal protest at the way the Germans had gone about their grievance over the Rhineland. Rhineland was not vital British interest Germany was a bulwark against Communism (Russia).
Source A: extract from the diaries of Harold Nicholson - 11th March 1936 Source A The French know that the invasion of the demilitarised zone was only decided on against the advice of the German general staff and the Foreign Office, and therefore they feel that if we show firmness we may discredit Hitler with his own people. On the other hand, if we do nothing, then finally the League and collective security will cease to have any meaning. All this is indisputable, but what is also indisputable is that the country will not allow us to take drastic action in what they regard as a purely French interest... 1. How fully does Source A illustrate the issues raised by the remilitarisation of the Rhineland in Source A? 6 Use the source and recalled knowledge. Source A: extract from the diaries of Harold Nicholson - 11th March 1936 Source A The French know that the invasion of the demilitarised zone was only decided on against the advice of the German general staff and the Foreign Office, and therefore they feel that if we show firmness we may discredit Hitler with his own people. On the other hand, if we do nothing, then finally the League and collective security will cease to have any meaning. All this is indisputable, but what is also indisputable is that the country will not allow us to take drastic action in what they regard as a purely French interest... 1. How fully does Source A illustrate the issues raised by the remilitarisation of the Rhineland in Source A? 6 Use the source and recalled knowledge.
Do you accept Harold Nicholson's analysis of the remilitarisation of the Rhineland in Source A? What is the question asking you to do? Set immediate context - give a few sentences to put issue/event in context with our Paper 2 course Identify the views of the author -in a nutshell! - i.e. the big picture - what is his overall view Make a judgement as to how far you accept what he is basically saying (extent) Back this up by selecting points from the source (bones) then putting flesh on them by using recall This will allow you to 'evaluate/assess' how far you accept them (i.e. by saying things like - point X by the author is accurate/relevant /or does highlight issues considered by the government / public at the time on this issue because... giving reasons/evidence to develop.) Then use 'additional' recall to develop argument with balance of recall- e.g. other evidence/ views which agree & those not in agreement -then and since -e.g. an opportunity for some historiography
Step 1 - Immediate Context Source refers to the issues in debate during the first major foreign policy expansion by Hitler in 1936. In 1919 it had been decided to ban Germany from having any military in the Rhineland. Supposed to help French security, any German forces found there could be seen as an act of war against France. In March 1936 Hitler sent in 22,000 troops into the Rhineland and broke the terms of Versailles/Locarno.
As 'guarantor' powers Britain and France should have acted. As it turned out, both did not. The remilitarisation of the Rhineland is seen today as a significant step in the road to war in 1939. The source highlights some of the issues influencing British policy at the time of the events in the Rhineland.
Step 2 -Big Picture Writing at the time of the actual events. The diary entry by Nicholson (a contemporary politician) notes the immediate reactions and general speculation of people towards what Hitler had done. He does capture the dilemma between what the Government should have done/perhaps wanted to do / or not The source highlights why they would not be willing to risk war over the issue and some of the factors influencing the Government debate over what to do. Many weeks of debate ensued in the House of Commons. NOW use the source.
Step 3 – Select relevant points from the source and use recall to evaluate each point Point one from source French know German invasion of Rhineland was action against Army advice Recall evaluating point from source This is accurate - Hitler later found to have said that his actions were a gamble/most nerve- racking 48 hours of his life etc. and that orders were given to retreat if any French troops appeared.
Point two from source Firmness may discredit Hitler Recall evaluating point from source This is accurate - some members of the British Government shared a fear that counter action could destabilise Hitler and lead to a Communist regime! This we did not want and were prepared to opt for the lesser evil! Some did not want to risk current road to closer friendship established with Anglo-German Naval Pact (1935) while others believed the 'sweet talk' of Hitler (promises)
Point three from source Doing nothing will undermine the League further Recall evaluating point from source This was an issue close to Nicholsons heart As a key supporter of the League, he was angry at recent events in Manchuria/Disarmament failure/ Abyssinia/conscription and rearmament by Germany He, like many others, could see the damage being done to the reputation of the League - a lack of effective response could do further damage
Point four from source Country will not allow us to take action Recall evaluating point from source This is accurate - many examples of public opinion at the time reflect anti-war feeling and certainly over German actions to 'free' themselves (as it was seen at the time) from Versailles e.g.. letters in the press. majority warned against action e.g. elections, peace ballot, Oxford Union debate all reinforced this impression e.g. anti-Versailles feeling by many British - Germany had legitimate grievances - harshness of the treaty/sympathy etc. The current debate - Italy/Abyssinia was far more violent since Hitler claimed his move was defensive not offensive and Hitler's promises and offer of 25-year non-aggression pact sounded good!
Point five from source Issue is purely a French concern Recall evaluating point from source This is accurate - certainly reflects the hostility of many in the UK towards the counter-productive nature of the Franco-Soviet Pact and the continual French obsession with Germany Germany were the victim as painted by anti-French propaganda
Link back to the question How fully does Source A illustrate the issues raised by the remilitarisation of the Rhineland in Source A? 6 So Nicholson does highlight some of the issues which were on the mind of the Government and public at the time. He captures the essence of the debate on the Rhineland issue caused at the time and the dilemma i.e. difficult position Hitler's action put Britain in! i.e. we knew, technically, we should have acted, but in the cold light of day were the actions worth a war?... we concluded no!
Additional Recall With the benefit of hindsight and not probably known by Nicholson when he recorded his observations in his dairy were other factors influencing British reaction: 1. Although privately concerned the Government wanted to cool the threat that the Rhineland might potentially cause - with statements like 'back-garden' 'action out of proportion' etc they hoped to take the sting out of the event. (Although the Government did not agree with what Hitler had done they were more concerned with the way he had carried out the remilitarisation) but the Government had economic/political reasons to consider before contemplating action:
without allies, (old WWI allies now not available or willing or unreliable) there was little funding for war, (welfare/dole) the effects of depression, (weak economy) apparent anti-war public opinion, (as examples above tended to show) overestimation of German military capability (believed propaganda) French defensive mentality having built the Maginot line. weaknesses of the British military which was currently overstretched due to the demands of the Empire and under-funded by the effects of the Ten Year Rule acts etc. All these factors had a bearing on the ability of the British Government to act even if they had wanted to. In general, the opinion at the time was to use the event to bring Hitler back into the League and move to negotiate what they considered as legitimate grievances to maintain peace. This was a step to further treaties and peace, not towards war as it appears now with the benefit of hindsight. Additional Recall
2. Although Nicholson records the lack of will to act, there were some voices at the time who did demand action. The scathing cartoons of David Low and EH Shepherd (illustration of the Nazi Goose Step into the Rhineland) could be added to criticisms by Churchill, Duff Cooper and Austin Chamberlain and a number of individual letters to newspapers. But their views were largely unheeded.
Yes, we can accept the issues raised by Nicholson as reflecting the dilemmas underlying the British response and a willingness to accept and deal with Hitler. It was a compromise, the first example of appeasement in action, as Eden himself noted at the time. Conclusion
1-2Selects some relevant evidence from the source and/or recalled knowledge but without making the required evaluation. 3-4Selects relevant evidence from the source and uses limited recall to inform a basic evaluation in terms of the question. 5-6Establishes the main points in the source and uses recalled knowledge to evaluate these and reach an appropriate conclusion.