Nazi Foreign Policy up to 1939

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What domestic policies were linked to foreign polices?
Autarky, rearmerment, four year plan and nationalism were all linked to the party's foreign policy
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What had the treaty of Versailles created?
a power vacuum in central and eastern europe with the collapse of the russian, Austro-Hungarian and turkish empires
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What could this vaccum not be filled with?
the succesor countries to the Austro-Hungarian empire, the USSR or the new Turkish republic
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What would a Revolutionist interpretation say?
1933-36 the Nazis tried to revise the Treaty of Versailles, intially throught the cause of diplomacy
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What does the Road to War interpretation say?
1936-39 Nazi foregein policy became more agressive and assertive in an attempt to expand German territory- eventually resulted in the second world war
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What were Hitlers foregein policy aims?
1. Lebensraum 2. Pan-German ambitions (unite all German pp) 3. Elitmate Marxism/Bolshevism 4. Revise the TOV 5. preserve Racial community and enlarge it
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Who were Germanys Foregien ministers during this period?
Count Konstantin Von Neurath (32-38) & Joachim Von Ribbentrop (38-45)
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What was the General situation in Europe during the 1930s?
world slump dissolved international solidarity and fostered attiude of National insularity- memories of WW1 still strong so many ppl and statesmen were determind to avoid another war
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What did France want during the 1930s?
harsh TOV to be maintained
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What did France see was central to their defence?
military superiority and collective security
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What did France try to do?
develop its links with countries on Germany's eastern boarder e.g. czechoslovakia, Romaina and Yugoslavia
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Who did France make a defence alliance with in 1935?
Czechosloviaka and USSR
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What was the state of France like at this time?
polically dived (series of weak governments) and had major economic problems
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What and Why was the British empire concerned about?
empire at its largest so resources were strenched- concerned about Japanese expansion in east & wary of Germany & fascist Itlay
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What did Britian want to aviod so how did its policy differ from France's?
another war so policy towards germany was more Pragmatic than frances
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What did Brittan think of the TOV?
thought it was unfair & supported 'redress of legitimate grivances'
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What did some see eastern Germany as?
aa a proper German sphere, thought this would divide Britians attention away from maritime & Imperial concerns
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What were many right wing brits like?
hostlie to stalin, sympathic to Hitler
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What was Itlays gov like during this time?
Facist gov, initally hitler and Mussolini did not have good relasonship
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What was Itlay concerned about?
to uphold Brenner Frontier & defend Austrian independance
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What did Italy do in 1935 and what did it reveal?
invade Abyssinia- the weakness of the league of nations
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Why had the USSR had econonic and sercret miltary links with Germany since 1922?
Rapallo Pact
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Who did the USSR make as allies and how was this alliance weakened?
1935 with France and Czechslovakia but weakened by Stalins purge of the military 1936-8
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What did Germany do in October 1933?
Withdraw from the Disarmament Confernace & the Legue of nations
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Why did Hitler do this?
He disliked the multilateral nature of the legaue of nations and resented the discrimination against Germany over armerments
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What did Germany do in January 1934?
sign a Non-agression pact with Poland
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What did this pact do?
created a favorable impression of a reasonable Germany. It also falsely suggested to the poles that an accomidation with Nazi Germany was possible
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What did this effectively breach?
the French system of alliances in Eastern Europe and in the short term secured Germany eastern boarder
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What happens in July 1934 to help with Anschluss?
Austrian Nazis assassinate Chancellor Dolfuss in an attempt to unite Germany and Austria
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How does Mussolini get involed in this?
he sends troops to the brenner Frontier and the attempt fails.
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How did Hitler react to this?
Hitler had great influence over Austrian Nazis but disclaims any responsiblity
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What did a plebiscite in January 1935 find?
90% in Saarland in favor of rejoining Germany (triumph for Hitler)
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What did Germany announce in March 1935?
exsistence of Military aircrafts & shortly after the introduction of conscription- went directly againsit TOV
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What agreement was made in June 1935?
a Naval agreement with Britian which limited its navy to 35% of that of Britians
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What did this bilaterial agreement do?
modify the TOV, breaks the Strasa Front againsit Germany- hitler hoped for a broader agreement with Britian
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What was Hitlers approach like between 1933-35 and why?
cautious as Germany was in a weak postion comapred to its political oppenants
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What did hitler feel secure enough to announce in 1935?
Germanys rearmerment
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What did Hitler sense in parts of Europe?
a reluctance to risk war in defence of possibly an unjust and outdated settlement
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What happens in March 1936? (important!!)
Remilitraztion of the Rhineland
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Why did Hitler decide to do this in 1936?
the international situation seemed favorable to Hitler
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Why would this help things on a domestic level?
needed to distract attention away from the economic situation caused by his increased rearmerment programme
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Did diplomats and army generals have a say?
Hitler overode their worries of it being too risky
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How many troops and police did Hitler send into the Rhineland?
14,000 troops, 22,000 local police
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Where did most of the troops go?
most stayed on the east bank, only 3,000 went as far as the border with France and Belgium
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What orders did the German troops have?
to withdraw if they faced any opposition-French took no militray action
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How did Hitler justfiy the remilitriation of the Rhineland?
argued it was German territory, he also offered non-agression pacts
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How did the Remilirisation of the Rhineland effect Hitlers popularity at home?
his prestiage home and aborad soared
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What did he do on the 7th of march and then on the 29th may?
7 he dissolved the Reichstag and on the 29 he held a plebscite asking German people to approve his action
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What was the outcome of the plebiscite?
99% of the electorate voted and 98.8% voted in Favour of Hitler's actions
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What were the feelings aboard like about his actions?
other threatened regimes now distrusted Britain and espically French resolve- some felt they might have to be conciliatory towards Germany
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What had Germany done in terms of its boarders?
secured its boarder in the West, now felt safer to expand into the east
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What resistance to Germany only likely have caused?
a minor war not a major war
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What pacts did the remilitarization of the Rhine land Break?
Treaty of Varsailles and Locarno pact
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What did Germany start to do in July 1936?
send troops to assit the right wing militrary nationlists in the Spanish Civil war
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What happens in November 1936?
Germany forms Anti-Comintern Pact with Japan.- Rome-Berlin Axsis with Facsit Itlay (establishment of politcal,economic and ideological cooperation)
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Why is 1937-36 seen as the Road to war?
Germany became more assertive in its foreign policy
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What eventes highlighted the League of Nations uneffectiveness to take action againsit members?
Itlays invasion of Abyssinia in 1936 and the Japanese invasion of Manchuria 1931
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What was held in November 1937?
Hossbach Meeting- Hitler adressed Foregein minister Neurath. war minister Bloomburg and the 3 commanders in cheif & tells generals of the need to increase armerments to prepare for major wars in 1940s
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What do some historians see this as?
a turning point in hitler foregin policy- dbate over whether this was a statement of intent or jsut an exploration of possiblites
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Who joined the Anti-Comintern Pact?
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When did Anschluss happen?
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Whay did Hitler see opportunity to increase German influence in Austria?
opponents disunited
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When was the Austro-German Agreement and what did it do?
July 1936 and saw Germany promising to respect Austrian Independance
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What had increased support by 1938 for joining a more properous Germany?
Austrian econmy was still badly hit by the depression
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Why did Hitler get an indication that Britian, France and Itlay would not act if Germany invaded Austria?
in 1934 Itlay had not moblised along the Brenner frontier to resist possible German attack of Austria- nov 37 mussonlini said he would not move againsit germany over Austria
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What happened on the 12th March 1938?
German troops entered Austria- there was no resistance and in the afternoon the Austrain crowds appulded Hitler
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What was Austria renamed after it was absorbed into Germany?
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What were the results of a plebscite that Hitler held on the 10th April?
48.8 million (99% germans & austrains) voted yes for a union- april britian recongised this
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When was the Czech Crisis?
Steptember 1938-March 1939
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Why was Czechoslovakia in a strong position?
member of the league of nations and had been allied to france since 1924 and the USSR since 1935
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How were these alliances not as strong as they could be?
neither France nor the USSR had boarders with Czechoslovakia and the countries surronding Czech would not allow soviet troops through their country
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What were Czechoslovakia's minority groups?
3 million Germans in the Sudetenland, slovaks, Poles and Hungairians (2million) who wanted autonomy
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What were the 2 stages of the Czech take over?
1. the sudetenland 2. Compltete destruction of Cazechoslovakia
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When did the Nazis gain the Sudetenland?
Steptember 1938
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How did Hitler use the arugement of 'Self-Determination' to allow the sudeten Germans to conquer the sudetenland?
throughout summer of 1938 germany used propaganda & verbal attacks againsit Czech to pressure the sudeten land to be handed over
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What had the Bristish primeminister agreed by steptember?
that Czechoslovakia should cede all areas of over 50% german- British and FRench Presstirised Czechs to agree
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How did inital talks break down and war feared?
Hitler raised his claim for all of the sudetenland by the 1st Oct
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When was the 4 power conference?
29-30 steptember at Munich (Britian, france, germany & Itlay)
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Who was Not invited to the conferance?
USSR & Czechoslovakia
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What did the Munich Conferance agree?
it agreed to German occupation of the Sudetenland between 1-10th October 1938- after conferance Nevel Chamberlin made a speech 'peace of our time'
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What were the immediate effects of this policy?
Hitlers domestic popularity increases and boosts hitlers confidnce as the west looks feeble- Czech loses 41,000 sqKM inculding indutrial sites
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What did the USSR see this as?
the west not standing up to Hitler & reinforced soviet idea of making a separate deal with Germany
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Why can this agreement be seen as contributing t o WW2?
French alliance system broken and a classic example of appeasement
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When did complete destruction of Czechoslovakia happen?
March 1939
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How did Hitler start his plans to take over Czechoslovakia?
encouraged poles, Romanians and hungarians to demand pieaces of Czechoslovakia and slovaks to demand autonomy
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What did Hitler do in March 1939 after a Nazi supported attempt to break up Czech had failed?
Hitler demanded Slovakia to declare its independance or it will be taken over by hungary. - slovak governement complies.
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What did President Hacha do on the 14 March?
goes to Berlin in desperation to see Hitler who keeps them waiting till 1.15am whilst he finishes watching a film
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What did hitler threaten Hacha he would do?
hitler demanded that hacha must split Czechoslovakia otherwise German troops would enter the country within a few hours- 4AM hacha gives in
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How was Czechoslovakia spilt?
Bohemia-Moravia became a Geerman protectorate while slovakia remained nominally independant- 15 march german troops entered Prague & Bohemia-Moravia is incorporated into the reich
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What were the immediate effects of this take over?
Germany makes major economic gains, inculding skoda works
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Why was the west's belief in Hitlers moderation weakened?
first time had conquered non German territory-Britian resolved to resist any further German moves
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How did Hitler target Poland?
claimed Germans were being mistreated in poland and demanded the return of Danzig together with rail and road route through the corridor of East Prussia
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What reduced Hitlers chances of bullying Poland into submission?
Poland took the hardline and Britian annoced it would gaurantee poland
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What did Germany demand Lithuania do in March 1939?
return Memel which was lost in 1919
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What were lithuania forced to do on the 23 march 1939?
to agree and memel was annexed by germany
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What 2 major things happened in April & May 1939?
April= Hitler orders plans to be drawn up to attack poland May= signs pact of steel with Itlay to give mutual assiteance if either goes to war
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What did the Nazi Soviet Pact agree on?
publcily stipulates non-agression for 10 years and makes economic agreements- In secret each agreed to help the other if there is a war againsit poland- ahre out spheres of influence in Eastern Europe
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Why did the pact seem remarkable?
the ideological differances between the country and hitlers agruments that the USSR was his main enemy eho were not only Marxists but inferior Slavs and occupying Germanys Lebensraum
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Why was this pact perfect for Germany?
1. isolated poland 2. prevented USSR being brounght into an alliamce with the west 3. avioded Ger fighting on 2 fronts 4. Ger gained vital raw materials from USSR that relived domestic pressure 5. Hitler willing to break agreement when he wanted
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What happened on the 31 August 1939?
SS troops dressed in polish uniforms 'attack' a German border radio post- this used as justification for war so 1st Step Germany invades poland
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On 3rd Steptember Britian and France declare war why did HItler not expect a large scale war?
only thought he would have to fight a local war but due to Polands location britian & france were unable to actually take any action to assit poland
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Other cards in this set

Card 2


What had the treaty of Versailles created?


a power vacuum in central and eastern europe with the collapse of the russian, Austro-Hungarian and turkish empires

Card 3


What could this vaccum not be filled with?


Preview of the front of card 3

Card 4


What would a Revolutionist interpretation say?


Preview of the front of card 4

Card 5


What does the Road to War interpretation say?


Preview of the front of card 5
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