The Sudetenland, 1938

About the Sudetenland Crisis in a timeline showing the actions of Hitler, Britain and France.

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  • Created on: 18-05-10 20:58
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The Sudetenland, 1938
Actions of Hitler Actions of Britain and France
Unlike Austria, Czechoslovakia would be
Hitler had designs on Czechoslovakia. no walk-over for Hitler. Britain, France
This new state created by the TOV and the USSR had all promised to support
included a large number of Germans in Czechoslovakia if it came to war.
the Sudetenland.
The Czechs themselves had a modern
Henlein, who was the leader of the Nazis army. The Czechoslovak leader, Benes,
in the Sudetenland, stirred up trouble was prepared to fight. He knew that
among the Sudetenland Germans and without the Sudetenland and its forts,
they demanded to be part of Germany. railways and industries, Czechoslovakia
would be defenceless.
All through the summer the tension rose
in Europe. If there was a war people
expected it would bring heavy bombing of
Hitler made it clear that he intended to civilians as had happened in the Spanish
May 1938
fight Czechoslovakia if necessary. Civil War, and in cities around Britain
councils began digging air-raid shelters.
Magazines carried advertisements for air-
raid protections and gas masks.
In a last-ditch effort to avert war
Chamberlain flew to meet Hitler. The
Hitler moderated his demands saying he
meeting appeared to go well.
was only interested in parts of the
Sudetenland-and then only if a plebiscite
1938 Chamberlain thought this was reasonable.
showed that the Sudeten Germans wanted
He seemed convinced that if Hitler got
to join Germany.
what he wanted he would at last be
The French and British put to the Czechs
19th September
their plans to give Hitler the parts of the
Sudetenland which he wanted.
However, at a second meeting, Hitler
increased his demands. He said he
`regretted' that the previously arranged
Chamberlain told Hitler that his demands
terms were not enough. He wanted all the
were unreasonable. The British navy was
22nd September Sudetenland.
mobilised. War seemed imminent.
To justify his demands he claimed the
Czech government was mistreating the
Germans in the Sudetenland and that he
intended to `rescue' them by October 1.
With Mussolini's help a final meeting was held in Munich. The leaders of Britain,
Germany, France and Italy decided on the fate of Czechoslovakia. They decided to give
Hitler what he wanted. They announced that Czechoslovakia was to lose the
29th September Sudetenland. They did not consult the Czechs or the USSR. This was known as the
1938 Munich Agreement.
The following morning Chamberlain and Hitler published a joint declaration which
Chamberlain said would `bring peace to our time'.
German troops marched into the
The Czechs had been portrayed. Benes
Sudetenland. At the same time, Hungary
resigned. But the rest of Europe breathed
1st October 1938 and Poland helped themselves to Czech
a sigh of relief and Chamberlain received a
territory where Hungarians and Poles
hero's welcome back in Britain.
were living.


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