Aftermath of the Ruhr
The Weimar Republic was already struggling with inflation brought on by the war.
In order to support the workers in the Ruhr, the government printed more money. This lead to hyperinflation to the point that paper money became worthless.
Consequences of the Ruhr occupation:
- Middle class: savings were entirely wiped out. Left demoralized and cynical about their future
- Lost faith in the system
- People vulnerable to the appeal of extremists
- Germany was in danger of collapse
- Allies were not receiving their payments and their hopes for economic recovery decreased.
The US wanted its loans back from the UK and France. This wasn't possible because they weren't getting reparations from Germany. The US interfered with the Dawes Plan. This allowed Germany to reschedule reparations payments so the total amount was reduced and the deadline extended. The US gave loans to Germany.
Results of the Locarno Treaties
Locarno Treaty: Signed on October 1925
- Streseman proposed to accept its current boundaries with France and Belgium
- This was welcomed by the British and the new French premier, Aristide Briand
- Germany accepted its borders with France and Belgium as permanent
- Germany would join the League of Nations
It seemed to be a genuine breakthrough in Franco-German relations.
The French and British may also repair their relationship which had been damaged by French insistance on a harsh approach towards Germany.
The Western borders had been fixed by intl. guarantee, but not the Eastern borders.
- A sense of euphoria
- Great optimism: tensions had been reduced
- Prosperity was returning to Europe
- Democracy was flourishing in Germany