Appeasement 1930-6

HideShow resource information

Politicians involved in appeasement

  • Ramsey MacDonald - Understandably, MacDonald had a greater focus on domestic issues during his time as Prime Minister. However, he was the first UK Prime Minister to speak to the US Congress. His Foreign Secretaries were Arthur Henderson and John Simmons
  • Stanley Baldwin - Baldwin played a far greater role in foreign affairs than his Foreign Secretaries
  • Neville Chamberlain - The Prime Minister most commonly associated with appeasement. Chamberlain's Foreign Secretaries were Anthony Eden and Lord Halifax, the latter of which played a very important role

Other people also played an important role in appeasement:

  • Neville Henderson - The British ambassador in Berlin during the time, was a supporter of appeasement and advised Chamberlin for its use
  • Robert Vansittart - He was the Permanent Under-Secretary for Foreign Affairs. He was an anti-Nazi who was perhaps the loudest voice in opposition to appeasement


A list of the key events in Foreign Policy during the 1930s:

  • Wall Street Crash 1929. The subsequent world-wide economic down turn splits the world in into two camps - the satisfied and dissatisfied countries. The latter choose to look for foreign expansion to gain resources. In this extreme situation Europe splits to the extremes of the political spectrum. It was an ideological battleground between the far right and left which became a real battle in Spain
  • 1931-32 Invasion of Manchuria Crisis was a key point which Historian AJP Taylor saw as the beginning of WWII
  • Throughout the early 1930s the League of Nations hosted disarmament conferences but ultimately these were ignored in the latter part of the decade
  • The Abyssinia (Ethiopia) Crisis of 1935 drew Italy and Germany closer as allies
  • The Anglo-German Naval Agreement demonstrated the world-wide shift to rearmament
  • Italy and Germany finally became formal allies; the Axis troops
  • In 1936 the Rhineland Crisis showed the expansionist aims of Hitler
  • Throughout 1936-39 there was the Spanish Civil
  • The 1937 Sudeten Crisis was another land-grab by Hitler
  • This was followed by the Anschluss in February 1938
  • In the same year was the Munich Agreement, a highly controversial moment
  • In 1939 was the Polish Guarantee another very complex situation
  • This was followed by the Nazi-Soviet Pact
  • War was finally declared in September 1939


  • 1920s-1935 - Britain was dedicated to the idea of Collective Security. They could achieve this through the League of Nations and Britain had great faith in the League despite its weaknesses
  • 1935-37 - Policy had changed to Passive Appeasement. The Abyssinia Crisis and the bilateral agreement of the Anglo-German Naval Agreement had shown an abandonment of Collective Security
  • 1937-39 - This was the period of Active Appeasement. Where Britain made unilateral agreements in attempts to avoid conflict - perhaps the zenith of this was the Munich Agreement

What shapes foreign policy

  • Public opinion
    • Many Newspapers favoured appeasement including the Telegraphy and Express. The Times was the most well-read paper at the time with its owner Jeffery Dawson a firm appeaser. These papers helped shaped public opinion in favour


No comments have yet been made

Similar History resources:

See all History resources »See all Modern Britain - 19th century onwards resources »