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27 Cards in this Set

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Winston Churchills view

According to the British Prime Minister, Winston Churchill, WW2 Was mainly caused by Hitler's polecies and aims.

Important people of WW2:
Brief introduction

Adolf Hitler: Fomer member, becoming chancellor in Germany 1933.
Streseman: German Chancellor before Hitler.
Von Hindenburg: President Left-wing, Hitlers opponent
Ludenorff: Military leader
Winston Churchill: British primeminister
Stalin: Russian general secratary of USSR

Foreign Policy 1919-1933:
Hitler: background information

Hitler was fighting as a soldier in WW1, but because he got temporarily blinded by the gas, he had to go to the hospital. During his time in the hospital, he decided to go into politics. As many other x-soldiers of ww1, Hitler was in rage over the unfair outcomes of WW1 as Germany surrendered. This also caused a general trend of division between the Münich democrates and the ekstreemist right-wing people.

Foreign Policy 1919-1933:
Hitler: background information 2

The defeat on the western front, The unfair demands of the Treaty of Versailles, the land gained in the treaty of Brest Litovsk which then had to be given back - were all factors that made Hitler go to the right-wing side.

He even referred to the Democrats at Münich as the November criminals, because they signed the Armistice on the 11/11 1918, confirming Germany's surrender.

Hitler enters politics:

1919: Hitler became the 55th member of the small party: DAP (deutsche arbeiter partei)
1920: DAP becomes NSDAP (Nazionalsozialistische Deutsche Arbeiter Partei. They called themselves the Nazi's.
1921: Hitler is very popular and noticable as a spokesman and he eventually becomes the leader of the party.

25- point plan

In 1921, the NAZI party came up with the 25-point plan. The plan was sort of a layout of the NAZI policies within Germany. The plan included points like:

- Unification of all Germans

- An end to the treaty of Versailles
- Stronger state
- Creation of a national army
-Exclusion of Jews from German society

Coup d'état in Münich 1923
Hitlers attempt to sieze power

In November 1923 Hitler and the NAZI's went to the Munich Beer Hall, where they attempted to sieze power in an illigal coup d'état over the weimar republic. 16 NAZI's were killed, and Hitler was sentenced to 5 years of prison, he ended up serving for only 9 months.
In prison, Hitler had time to think his policies through and he produced the very first edition of Mein Kampf (my struggle) which was a book concerning the policies and ideas/aims of Hitler and the NAZI's.

Mein Kampf

My Struggle - Evidence of longterm planning.

The book was a mixture between an autobiography and political philosophy. In Hitler's first edition of mein kampf which he wrote during his time in prison, Hitler layed out the essentials for Nazi policy. there was a great focus on:

- Aryan race: The purification of the German race
- Lebensraum: "living space". Space for the Aryan race in terms of territory.

Success of the Nazi's

Germany's population was getting tired of the weimar-republic. The destruction of war, depth and the great depression resulted in a fast growing unemploymentrate. People were desperate and they wanted a solution now. Therefore a correlation between the increase in unemplyment and the support/success of the Nazi's can be found.
In the end, Heinrich Von Hindenbourg and the concervatives led Hitler to power, as they believed that having him on their side would be useful + they thought they could control him.

Hitler becomes chancellor:

Due to the support of many right-wing parties of the weimar republic, the nazi's came to power.
They had gained a lot of their support because these powers meant that Hitler would encourage his foreign policies, Lebensraum.
There was also a huge rely on rearmment.
The rule was totalitarian.

Short term Causes of WW2
Withdrewal from the Treaty of Versailles
Militarism and Reperations

- Hitler announced that the Nazi's refused to pay for further reperations in europe. This went against the agreement signed in the Treaty of Versailles. It had already been declared that germany didn't want to pay, back in 1931, but Hitlers reanouncement was good propaganda.

- An IMPORTANT factor for the increase in tension, was Hitlers plans for rearmment in Germany. This went against settlements in the Disarmment conference of 1933.

Hitlers agression causing tension

In 1933, Hitler withdrew from the League of Nations.

The withdrewal + the foreign policy + the rearmement upset the powers of europe. Germany was a threat, as they had a huge military force and they showed that they did not care for the League and collective security.

Also a non-agression pact was signed with Poland.

Assassination of Engelbert Dollfuss

Hitler wanted to unify Austria and Germany to a collected empire called Anschluss. The unification was forbidden by the League of Nations and was stated as an article in the Treaty of Versailles. If any attempt on unification would happen, Germany knew they would have to face confrontation with the European powers. In austria, pro-nazi groups stated to arise. And in 1934, they actually murdered their own Austrian Chancellor: Engelbert Dollfuss at an attempt at a coup d'état. Hitler saw this as an opportunity of creating Anschluss, but Moussolini sent his troops to the Austrian borders, to scare Germany

Further Violation of the Treaty of Versailles

And positive propaganda

In 1935, the mandate Saar, was as an outcome of WW1, led to selfdetermination. With a vote of a ratio of 9:1 in favour of unifying with Germany. This was great for the Nazi's as it showed that they had support.

Hitler then announced to the rest of Europe that he had an army consisting of 500.000 men and admitted his airforce. This made other powers of europe VERY concerned.

The European Response

Stresa front and Naval agreement 1935

Due to Hitlers Agression towards the treaty of Versailles, Britain, France and Italy signed an alliance called "the Streasa front". The alliance only lasted a month, as they came to realize their possibility of stopping Hitler was minimal. Also Britain signed an Angelo-German Naval agreement in 1935, allowing Germany to expand their army way more than the Treaty of Versailles allowed. Britain did this due to self-interests and also they tried to control the expandsion of the German army.

Remilitarisation of Rhineland

Germany remilitarized the neutral Rhineland in 1936. This was a crucial violation of earlier agreements made in the treaty of versailles.

The rhineland had been demilitarized in the first place, in order to secure the French border against the German.
So, when Germany turned towards the Rhineland, some generals were afraid that France and maybe Britain would react, and they were told to retreat at the first sight of any troops. This never happened as the French couldn´t fight alone and Britain was uninterested in war.

Rome-Berlin Axis and the Anti Comintern Pact 1936

The Anti-comintern pact or the anti communists pact, was a pact that was anti communist. Germany signed it with Japan in 1936, where in 1937, Italy joined.
The aim:
Was to forbid any traties signed with the Soviet Union. This was also sort of an alliance, in case the Soviets would attack either of these powers.
- Germany agreed to accept the newly invaded Manchurria as Manchukuo, to favour Japan to insure less agression in Asia.

The Hossbach meeting 5th of november 1937

In november 1937, hitler called in for a meeting where he would lay out his four-year-plan for Germany´s economy.

Anschluss 1938
The creation

In 1938, Hitler sent his troops to Austria, when the Austrian Chancellor Schnuschnigg called in for a meeting regarding the future of Austria. Hitler did not fear Italy anymore, since they were now an allie, and the british Minister Chamberlain, argued that the Treaty of Versailles, had been to harsh as it banned the creation of Anschluss. Hitler sent his troops down there and used the excuse, that they were there to make sure everything would settle peacefully throughout the election. 99.75% were in favour of Anschluss.

Tension over the Sudetenland

Hitler wanted to regain the lost Sudetenland, from Czhechoslovakia, which was lost due to the Treaty of Versailles.
The Czechs then Turned to France whom they had an agreement with. The british and the USSR also agreed to support the Czechs.
Hitler announced that he would be willing to FIGHT for Czechoslovakia. This triggered an attempt by Chamberlain, to meet with Hitler and resolve these issues.

Munich Agreement September 1938

September 15: After Hitlers announcement of war-like tendencies, Chamberlain of Britain, set up a meeting with Hitler, where the outcome was that Hitler would get a small porportion of the Sudetenland which were already in favour of becoming German.
September 22nd: Another meeting was held, but this time, Hitler demanded ALL of the Sudetenland. This led to Britain starting to mobilize their army.
September 29th: Hitler got his will. France, Britain and Italy agreed on Hitlers ultimatum, but NO ONE consulted the Czechs Nor the USSR

The situation so far

Germany: singed Angelo-German naval agreement in 1935, Hitler admitted his huge army and airforce, Stresa front, Militarisation of Rhineland, Allied with Italy after Spanish Civil war 1936, Achieved anschluss 1938, Signed treaty with Italy 1936, Japan 1937, Munich agreement allowed Germany to take over Sudetenland, Hitler rearmed and reconstructed the arm race in 1939.

Immediate Causes of WW2

The Nazi-Soviet Pact

Hitlers next step was the invasion of Poland in 1939.
Hitler wanted to avoid a two front war and Britain and France already made it clear that the invasion of Poland would mean war.
Hitler turned to the USSR and signed the Nazi-Soviet pact, stating that they could not attack one another AND then they secretly divided Poland between them.

Hitler: benefitted from the pact as it meant he could fight off the west before the east.
Stalin: Beneffited as he could take care of the threats from Japan and not participate in the European war.

WW2 Starts

. 3rd of March 1939: British minister Chamberlain announces that Britain and France wants to secure the independence of Polan.
-Germany ignorred the threat and invaded poland in 1939 and Britain + France declares war 1st of september, as warned earlier.

1930s Apeasement

1. Chamberlain feared another war. People wanted peace = not enough public support to go to war.
2. General belief that League would prevent aggressing Hitler further
3. Britain was too weak for war in 1938, needed time to re-arm, apeasement bought them a year. 4. Treaty of Versailles was considered unfair by Chamberlain, so many British people sympathised with Hitler's demands. 5. Chamberlain misjudged Hitler so he trusted Hitler's promises that Sudetenland was the last thing he wanted. 6. Fear of Crommunism so people let Hitler grow strong because they thought a strong Germany could stop Russia. A

Apeasement abandonned

APPEASEMENT WAS ABANDONED IN 1939 1. Feb: Franco (a Fascist) won the Spanish Civil War so it seemed Fascism was on the increase everywhere. 2. 15 March: Hitler invaded Czechoslovakia so people realised that only a war would stop him. 3. March: Chamberlain promised to defend Poland which made war inevitable when Hitler invaded Poland. 4. April: Mussolini conquers Albania which made it seem that Fascism wanted to take over the world.

Appeasement abandoned (2)

5. May: Pact of Steel [Hitler and Mussolini] which showed Hitler was building up his forces for war. 6. Aug: British alliance with USSR failed, but 23 August Nazi-Soviet Pact so Hitler was free to invade Poland. 7. Aug: Hitler stirred up trouble in Danzig and demanded the Polish corridor, then 8. Sept: Hitler invaded Poland.