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World War II From Appeasement to Victory. What is the situation in the late 1930’s? After World War I the Western democracies wanted to preserve peace.

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Presentation on theme: "World War II From Appeasement to Victory. What is the situation in the late 1930’s? After World War I the Western democracies wanted to preserve peace."— Presentation transcript:

1 World War II From Appeasement to Victory

2 What is the situation in the late 1930’s? After World War I the Western democracies wanted to preserve peace throughout the world. The leaders of Germany, Italy and Japan took aggressive actions but were met with only verbal protests and pleas for peace. The Western democracies had a policy of appeasement toward Hitler and Mussolini. They wanted to avoid war at all costs after the destruction of World War I.

3 What is appeasement? The granting of concessions to avoid conflict. Essentially it means giving someone what they want to keep from having to fight with them.

4 Why choose appeasement? The policy of appeasement developed for several reasons. France and Britain were demoralized and suffering from political and economic problems related to the Great Depression. Some people thought Hitler’s actions were justified due to the harsh conditions of the Treaty of Versailles. Fascism was seen as a defense against the spread of communism. Most of all widespread PACIFISM (opposition to war) developed following the terrible losses sustained in World War I, leading governments to seek peace no matter what the price. Popular sentiment in the U.S. also expressed a desire to stay out of foreign affairs and avoid war. Reflecting this isolationist feeling, the U.S. Congress passed the Neutrality Acts, which forbade loans or the sale of arms to any nations at war

5 Japanese Aggression in the Pacific 1931 Japan invaded Manchuria in Northeastern China. China protested the action at the League of Nations. The League ordered Japan to give up Manchuria. Japan simply withdrew from the League of Nations, which was powerless to stop them. In 1937, Japan conquered much of Eastern and Southern China. By 1940 the Japanese conquered French Indochina, and much of the Dutch East Indies.

6 Italian Aggression In 1935 Mussolini ordered the Italian army to invade Ethiopia after more than a year of border disputes. The League of Nations condemned the attack and placed economic sanctions on Italy. Unfortunately the sanctions did not stop the sale of oil, coal, or iron, which were the resources needed for war, so the sanctions had little effect. The League of Nations had no real power to enforce these sanctions. By 1935 Mussolini had conquered Ethiopia


8 Spanish Civil War In 1931 King Alfonso of Spain abdicated. A new Republic was established with socialist leanings. The fascist Nationalists opposed the Loyalists, who were socialists and those who wanted democracy. When war broke out Germany and Italy supported the Nationalists, and the Soviet Union backed the Loyalists. Eventually the Nationalists won control and established a fascist dictatorship under Francisco Franco. The Nazis used this war as “practice” for future campaigns.

9 Axis Powers Italy, Germany and Tokyo formed the Rome-Berlin- Tokyo Axis They joined together to fight Soviet communism They agreed not to interfere with any plans the others had to expand their territory.

10 Nazi Expansion Hitler sent German troops into the Rhineland in France in 1936, violating the Treaty of Versailles. The League of Nations did not stop him. In 1938 the Nazis sought to unify Germany and Austria in the ANSCHLUSS, claiming that the two countries shared a common history and language. Some Austrians were in favor of this and Hitler quickly silenced any who opposed it. The Western democracies took no action, so Hitler had his way.

11 Nazi Expansion The Sudetenland was a region of eastern Czechoslovakia with many Germans. Hitler demanded that Sudetenland be given independence. Britain and France did not want to go to war over this region and wanted a peaceful resolution. Believing Britain and France to be weak, Hitler increased his demands and insisted that the Sudetenland be united with Germany.

12 Early Nazi Expansion

13 Munich Conference On September 29, 1938 the leaders of Germany, Italy, Britain, and France met in Munich to solve the Sudetenland problem. In an attempt to avoid war, Britain and France persuaded the Czechs to give up this land. In return, Hitler promised not to seek more territory. Peace seemed to be assured and British Prime Minister Neville Chamberlain claimed that the meeting ensured “peace for our time.” In March 1939 Hitler invaded the western part of Czechoslovakia anyway. Britain and France realized their policy of appeasement had failed and vowed to protect Poland, Hitler’s next likely target.

14 Nazi-Soviet Pact In August 1939 Germany and the Soviet Union signed the Nazi-Soviet Non-Aggression Pact. They agreed to peaceful relations Secretly, they agreed to not fight if the other went to war. The two sides also agreed to split Poland into a German area in the West and a Soviet area in the East. Stalin and Hitler joined forces because of mutual need: Hitler did not want a war with the West and the Soviets at the same time Stalin tried to avoid war with Germany and gain land in Eastern Europe.

15 Invasion of Poland Germany invaded Poland on September 1, 1939. Britain and France declared war on Germany two days later. World War II had begun.

16 Map: On the other side of the map you completed on Thursday, identify areas of Nazi and Italian expansion in Europe and North Africa. Use two colors: First color: German territory Second color: Italian territory

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