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Was Hitler or European Democracies responsible for war in Europe?

Hitler violating the Treaty of Versailles

Hitler violating the Treaty of Versailles

The picture shows Hitler trying to break off from the claws of the Treaty of Versailles. For example, he militarized the Rhineland, allowed conscription and set up an air force. The German people resented the Treaty of Versailles and believed that Hitler was justified in his actions. With this, Hitler had support from his citizens. I chose this source as it shows how ambitious and bold Hitler was. He completely violated the Treaty of Versailles and did not fear criticisms or attacks from the Allies. After he successfully undo the Treaty, he grew more eager to start creating lebensraum. Hitler began eyeing up on his neighbours (Britain and France), which worried them. After Germany invaded many countries, Britain and France finally declared war on them. Thus I can conclude that the violation of Treaty of Versailles without resistance led to Hitler becoming bolder day by day, which eventually led to war in Europe. If he was not brave enough to abandon the treaty, a war might not have started.

mtholyoke.edu
Nazi-Soviet Nonaggression Pact

Nazi-Soviet Nonaggression Pact

The Nazi-Soviet Nonaggression Pact was an agreement stipulating mutual nonaggression between the Soviet Union and Germany. The picture shows Hitler and Stalin having their hands around each other, making it seem like they are very good friends. In actual fact, both sign the pact for their own gains, and Hitler turned on Stalin later in the war. I chose this picture as it shows how scheming Hitler was. He knew fighting the war in two fronts would prove difficult for his country, and thus he wanted to have peace with Soviet Union for the time being. This would allow him to channel more forces to the divisions fighting the war in the western fronts. Hitler well know that the Soviets were not on good terms with the allies, and thus seized this opportunity to get Stalin on his side. Together, they invaded Poland, which led to Britain and France declaring war on Germany. Britain and France said that if Hitler were to attack Poland, they would invade Germany. However, Hitler still chose to invade Poland, well knowing a war would start. Therefore I can conclude that Hitler's intelligent schemes and the determination to invade Poland had led to war in Europe.

sites.google.com
Germany's involvement in Spanish Civil War

Germany's involvement in Spanish Civil War

The video proved how Hitler used the Spanish Civil War to his country's gains. He knew Britain and France would not take action against him and thus boldly involve his country in the civil war. While diverting his attention from his plans for expansion into Eastern Europe, the involvement in war also gave Hitler the chance to test his army and air force. I chose this source as it shows how smart Hitler was and how calculated his moves were. He knew when and why to get involved with foreign affairs, and how to use it to his own gains. Since he had successfully tested out his weapons, he had more reaffirmation that his country was ready for war. Therefore, I can conclude that Hitler's efforts had led to the outbreak of war in Europe.

youtube.com
Chamberlain and Hitler in Munich for Negotiations on the Munich Agreement in 1938

Chamberlain and Hitler in Munich for Negotiations on the Munich Agreement in 1938

The picture shows Chamberlain and Hitler meeting to sign a treaty, allowing Hitler to take over Sudetenland. Chamberlain seemed positive about the agreement, thinking Hitler would keep to his promise and not invade the rest of Czechoslovakia. I chose this source as it indicates Chamberlain's misjudgment of Hitler. He believed Hitler was a man that could be reasoned with and that his words were reliable. Chamberlain believed Hitler's promise that he would cease making demands once he controlled Sudetenland. In actual fact, Hitler repeatedly made promises to Chamberlain and then broke them. Chamberlain's misjudgment led to Hitler getting whatever he wanted without any resistance. Chamberlain was a person who wanted to avoid war as much as possible, and thus agreed to many of Hitler's demands as long as peace was maintained. Hitler thus became more ambitious as he knew Chamberlain would not dare to stop him. Thus I can conclude that the European Democracies, in this case Chamberlain was responsible for war in Europe.

washingtonpost.com
Cartoons about Communism and Fascism from Punch | PUNCH Magazine Cartoon Archive

Cartoons about Communism and Fascism from Punch | PUNCH Magazine Cartoon Archive

{ Caption: The Awful Warning. France and England. "We don't want you to fight, but, by jingo, if you do, we shall probably issue a joint memorandum suggesting a mild disapproval of you." }

This cartoon illustrates the Britain and France condemning Mussolini for his actions but not doing anything else. Mussolini's disdain facial expression proved Britain's and France's warning to be ineffective. I chose this source as it indicates that the Britain and France were not at all convincing in stopping Mussolini from invading other countries. They were fearful of retaliation and would rather let Italy have their way than have their own country put at an disadvantage. The caption also mocks Britain and France by mentioning they would only continue to criticise Mussolini even if he attack other countries. Thus, I can conclude that the European Democracies' lack of conviction resulted in war in Europe.

punch.photoshelter.com
WW2 - OverSimplified (Part 1)

WW2 - OverSimplified (Part 1)

The video (5:40 - 7:15) shows Hitler building up his army and the allies following a policy of appeasement. Despite Hitler boldly violating the Treaty of Versailles and invading other countries, the allies did not stop Hitler. This clearly shows that the Allies view their own country's interests as more important than keeping Germany in check. They would rather reduce conflicts than to confront Hitler as they wanted to keep war as far away from home as possible. I chose this source as it clearly shows the lack of the Allies' interference with Hitler's action and them allowing Hitler to do as he liked. The policy of appeasement the Allies followed only led to Hitler being more aggressive and bold. Had they stopped Hitler the first few times, war in Europe could have been prevented. Moreover, Chamberlain believed Hitler was someone he could negotiate with, and thus did not take action against Hitler's behaviours. Although Hitler broke promises numerous times, Chamberlain still chose to trust Hitler, which was apparent that it was a wrong decision. Thus I can conclude that the European Democracies were responsible for war in Europe.

youtube.com