Germany 1918-39

  • Created by: Etyler296
  • Created on: 10-10-18 16:49

The Treaty of Versailles

The Treaty of Versailles was the treaty that Germany signed which settled the terms of peace after the First World War. Germany was not present at the Paris Peace Conference where the victorious allied powers decided these terms. 

The Treaty ended up punishing Germany for the war and blaming Germany for starting the war. As well as guilt, Germany was involuntarily forced to pay £6.6 billion in reparations to the allied forces. In addition to this Germany's army was restricted to only 100,000 soldiers, Simultaneously they were not allowed any tanks, submarines or airplanes. The size of Germany's navy was also confined to ensure that they could not start another war.

If this wasn't enough. Germany had lost all her overseas colonies and had land taken from her in continental Europe. Alsace-Lorraine was given to France, the polish corridor was created and the German city of Danzig was made a free city. The total percentage of land that was lost by Germany was 13% which equated to 12.55 of their population. Furthermore, punishments such as the demilitarisation of the Rhineland which bordered Germany and France and the prohibition of union with Austria were all included in the Treaty.

Germany saw the Treaty as a dictated peace and therefore gave it the name `diktat`. Many Germans blamed their struggles on the Weimar Republic for betraying  Germany and agreeing to such harsh demands. 

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Hitler Takes Total Control

Hitler took complete control over the Nazi party in January 1922. During a conference, Hitler persuaded members of the party that election for the leader was a mistake and that the Nazi party did not need this. He also banned all debate on the party policy. 

This crushed any chance of democracy that existed within the party beforehand and ensured that he had total control over the entire party.

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The 25 Point Programme

The 25 Point Programme was created by Hitler and Drexler to plan out their vision for a perfect Germany, which was then relayed to the citizen that they were trying to win their votes off. It was based around the ideals of Nationalism, Socialism and wove the ideas of anti-semitism into their policies. The 25 point programme is listed below:

  1. The unity of all German-speaking peoples into one greater Germany.

  2. The destruction of the Treaty of Versailles.

  3. Colonies and land to feed Germany’s population.

  4. Only Germans can be citizens.   No Jew can be a German.

  5. People in Germany who are not citizens must obey special laws for foreigners.

  6. Only German citizens can vote, be employed or hold public office.

  7. Citizens are entitled to a job and a decent standard of living.

  8. No immigration of non-German must be allowed.   Anyone who has come to since 1914 must be removed.

  9. All citizens have equal rights 

  10. The duty of a citizen is to find employment

  11. All unemployment benefits should end.

  12. All profits made during the war must be shared.

  13. Nationalization of public industries including electricity and gas.

  14. Large companies must share their profits with the workers

  15. Pensions must be improved

  16. Help for small shops and businesses; large department stores must be closed down to support this.

  17. Property reform to give small farmers land

  18. Criminals and profiteers must be punished by death.

  19. Reform of the law to make it more German.

  20. Improve education so that all Germans can find employment

  21. Improve people’s health by forcing people to do sport. 

  22. Abolition of the Army, and a new People’s Army in its place.

  23. German newspapers must be free of foreign influence.

  24. Freedom of religion.

  25. A strong government with unrestricted authority over Germany.

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The Nazis, Women and the Family

When the Nazis finally took control of Germany in 1933 they faced a falling in birth rate, which worried them severely. A decrease in birth rate meant that Germany wouldn't have enough workers or soldiers for the future in Germany. With this imminent crisis in the German population, the Nazis enforced several changes which were designed to resolve this problem.

It was the Nazis View for women to get married and raise a family in accordance with the Nazi vision. To encourage this, the Nazis provided a financial incentive to those who got married. Loans of 1000 Reichsmark were made available to couples who married. This was a compelling amount roughly equating to 3/4 of a years salary. However, the Nazis applied conditions to the loans so that the wife would remove herself from the labor force. The law itself also contained benefits to families that accommodated children. Each time a family had a child, there would be a reduction of a quarter f the loan. Divorce laws were also renewed so that they were designed to promote the birth of children. A man could divorce his wife if she would not or somehow couldn't conceive children.

Rewards were offered to mothers who exceeded the number of children. if a mother had four or five kids she would receive a Bronze medal, six or seven for a Silver medal and 8 or more to receive a Gold medal. It was seen as a huge honor to receive one. The medals had the date of the award and Hiter's signature on the reverse.

In 1935, the Nazis started the Lebensborn programme which encouraged children to be born to ** men to create pure Ayrans who would be the future leaders of Germany. The Programme was headed by the ** leader Heinrich Himmler.

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