Germany 1918-1945

GERMANY 1918-1945

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In 1923 Germany couldnt pay the reparations

-France and Belgium occupied the Ruhr- the richest industrial part of Germany- to take resources instead. This led to fury in Germany, while workers in the Ruhr refused to work. Germany industry was devastated again, plunging the economy into hyperinflation. 

-Hyperinflation happens when production can't keep up with the amount of money there is, so the money keeps loosing its value.

HYPERINFLATION- Price of an EGG in germany.

Hyperinflation had 3 major results

- Wages were paid TWICE a day before prices went up again
-The middle classes lost out as bank savings became worthless
-The German Mark became worthless  

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Stresseman and Recovery

August 1923- Stresseman became Chancellor and gradually led germany back to recovery. He believed that the best chance for recovery was working with other countries. 

DAWES PLAN- USA > Lends money to Germany > Germany pays back Britain and France (Reperations) > Britain and France pay back debts to USA..

1. In September 1923 he told workers in the Ruhr to return to work. 

2.Accepted Dawes Plan in 1924 and introduced a new German Mark called the Rentenmark to make the currency more stable.
3.In 1925 the French and Belgian troops left the Ruhr. 
4. In October 1925 he agreed to the Locarno Treaty where the western borders of Germany were agreed, but not the eastern. He won the Nobel Peace Prize for his efforts in this field. 
5- In 1926 Germany joined the lague of nations and became one of the permanent members of the Council. 
6-In 1928 Germant was 1 of 65 countries to sign the Kellogg-Briand Pact. They promised not to use violence to settle disputes.
7-In 1929, Young Plan replaced Dawes Plan- reparations would be reduced by 3/4 of the amount and Germany was given 59 yrs to pay them.

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Germany Had Begun To Recover- but depended on US m

Life was beginning to look better for Germany thanks to Stresseman. But he died in October 1929, just before the WALL STREET CRASH. The plans he had agreed would only work if the USA had enough money to keep lending to Germany- but now it didnt. Things were going to get worse again. 

On 14th October 1929 (black Thursday) the Wall Street Crash occured. The USA recalled all loans, which meant that Germany was put into more debt, and was not able to fund it's government properly, resulting in the Great Depression. Stresemann, foreign minister of Germany, knew that the economy was unstable, "dancing on a volcano", and because of this economic instability the Weimar Republic could not control the crisis, and extremist political parties became more popular. 

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Weimar Republic had many Cultural Achievements

1- Germanys capital Berlin became a centre for culture under the Weimar Republic.
2. There were advances in art, architecture, music and literature. German films were successful- e.g. 'Metropolis', directed by Fritz Lang. 
3.Some developements were bold and new, like the drama of Bertolt Brecht. The Bauhaus School of design was highly influential.
4.The Weimar Republic encouraged new ways of critical thinking at places like Frankfurt Uni. 
5.Not everyone approved of these cultural changes- the cabaret culture in Berlin was seen as immoral by some. The culture of the Weimar Republic didn't survive under the Nazis.. 

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Adolf Hitler was the Nazi Leader

- Born in Austria 1889, Hitler had lived in Germany from 1912 onwards. 
- He'd been a brave soldier on the Western Front in World War I, winning the Iron Cross twice. He couldn't accept that Germany lost the war.
-In 1919 he joined the German Workers party, led by Anton Drexler- it was a tiny party- Hitler was the 55th member. In 1920 the name was changed to the National Socialist German Workers Party (Nazis) 
- Hitler was a charismatic speaker and attracted new members. He took over the leadership of the party.
- The party set up its own armed group called the SA- brown shirted storm troopers who protected Nazi Leaders and harrassed their opponents.  

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Hitler Tried to Over Throw the Government in the M

The Munich Putsch was an attempt by the Nazis to seize control of Bavaria in November 1923 and then to try to seize control of Germany. The attempt failed and Hitler was sent to prison. It seems that the consequences of the Munich Putsch had more of an effect than the actual event.

1. In 1923, things were going badly for the Weimar Republic- it seemed weak.
2. Hitler planned to overthrow the weimar government- starting by taking control of the government in a region called Bavaria.
3. Hitler's soldiers occupied a beer hall in the Bavarian city of Munich where local government leaders were meeting. He announced that the revolution hed begun. 
4.The next day Hitler marched into Munich supported by storm troopers. But the revolt quickly collapsed when police fired on the rebels. 

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Hitler Wrote Mein Kamp in Prison

1. Hitler was imprisoned for his role in the Munich Putsch. 
2. He wrote a book in prison describing his beliefs and ambitions. The title Mein Kampf means 'My Struggle' 

What was In Mein Kampf? 
-Germans had a right to LEBENSRAUM (more space to live)
-Hitler believed other races were inferior
-Would Create a greater Germany
-Would reverse Versailles Treaty
-Would join Austria and Germany (Anschluss)
-Believed ARYAN races were master race

The Treaty of Versailles was the treaty the officially ended WWI. It was signed by France, England, Germany and Italy. Since the Germans had lost the war, the treaty made Germany pay for the entire war and made them say that the war was their fault. This treaty also established the League of Nations. The USA did not sign the treaty because Congress refused to ratify the treaty. 

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