• Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

'In the years 1933-37, German foreign policy was essentially nationalist rather than specifically Nazi'. How far do you agree with this opinion?

Extracts from this document...


'In the years 1933-37, German foreign policy was essentially nationalist rather than specifically Nazi'. How far do you agree with this opinion? J. Noakes and G. Prindham describe the main task of Hitler's foreign policy as 'providing diplomatic cover for the consolidation of Nazi power at home and for an acceleration of the rearmament programme' and that 'Hitler was aware of the need to move cautiously'. Hitler understood that the western democracies were becoming increasingly suspicious towards him, and as a result, ensured that his regime took common ideas from earlier nationalist thinking (e.g. racism and anti-Semitism, the reintroduction of national service and the overthrow of the Versailles Treaty) before progressively acting to imprint his own Nazi ideology of acquiring lebensraum in the east, forging alliances with other nations and rearming Germany for war. The context in which Hitler found himself in 1933 must be considered when exploring the ideology of German foreign policy in this period. ...read more.


This progression from nationalist to Nazi foreign policy on the issue of rearmament is exemplified through the Anglo-German Naval Pact of June 1935, which can be seen to show how Hitler used circumstances to his advantage in order to allow him to rearm as quickly and efficiently as possible. Subsequently, he could then begin exerting his own ideology on Germany at home so he could pursue expansion in a faster time. Hitler's desire for lebensraum in the east was not a newly-found idea in German foreign policy, and neither was the desire for a union of all Germans in a 'Greater Germany'. In fact, Chancellor Behtmann Hollweg's 'September Programme' of September 1914 and the Treaty of Brest-Litovsk of March 1918 had both fundamentally referred to expansionism as well as the 'biological struggle' between races during warfare. Hitler, however, had taken his race thinking one step further through the pseudo-scientific boost of social Darwinism. ...read more.


By showing some continuity with nationalists of the Weimar era, Hitler had ensured that initially he had not appeared greatly controversial or radical in his demands. However, despite his cautious approach to begin with, Hitler had used favourable circumstances to exploit the weaknesses of other nations in order to step up in his own Nazi policies. For example, he had managed to denounce the Versailles Treaty's armament limitations, increase pace of rearmament, leave the League of Nations, forge new alliances, reintroduce conscription and reoccupy the Rhineland in a short time period with little or no resistance. It is therefore apparent that, in 1933-37, Hitler had appeared to lay nationalist foundations on which he could then step up his rearmament programme in order to realise his underlying Nazi expansionist ambitions. However, he had done this whilst still satisfying the nationalist wishes of his government, industrialists, leading military figures and many of the German population. ?? ?? ?? ?? A2 History - Unit 4 - 27/11/2008 ...read more.

The above preview is unformatted text

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our AS and A Level Modern European History, 1789-1945 section.

Found what you're looking for?

  • Start learning 29% faster today
  • 150,000+ documents available
  • Just £6.99 a month

Not the one? Search for your essay title...
  • Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

See related essaysSee related essays

Related AS and A Level Modern European History, 1789-1945 essays

  1. "The most important aim of foreign policy 1933-1936 was to overthrow the terms of ...

    was signed which made Germany and Italy allies and partners of business. They shared views over General Franco's Spain and even assisted in the over throwing of the Republican government and lastly they shared the same views about communist Russia.

  2. Hitlers Germany

    The Battle of France had already been lost. The thing to do was to prepare for the coming Battle of Britain. A. "Miracle of Dunkirk" Lord Gort feared lest the Germans, who had reached the Channel and turned north, cut off his egress to the sea.

  1. The outbreak of war in Europe in 1914 was due to an aggressive German ...

    However, this evidence is questionable, there are few records of this meeting and so it is not clear what was discussed; the importance of the meeting is also highly suspect as the political course taken during the July Crisis of 1914 supposedly differs totally from that which was laid out

  2. "Hitler's foreign policy successes between 1936 and 1939 rested on his remarkable tactical skills ...

    This broke the little entente, and began to drive a wedge into Europe. This aside however, the reoccupation of the Rhineland was a minimally planned gamble, and by no means a show of neither skill nor exploitation. On 5th November 1937, a secret meeting took place at the Reichstag chancellery

  1. How effectively did Irish Catholic and nationalist leaders advance their cause in the years ...

    Their basic violence tactics, which went wrong on more than one occasion killed many innocent people. There were also members of the Fenian movement in parliament who used a tactic called Obstruction where they would link every point made, if possible, to Ireland.

  2. How far do you agree that Mussolini's foreign policy was a failure from the ...

    This foreign policy was a failure as it completely tied Mussolini down to conform to Hitler?s ideology and wars; and it was through this pact that Italy was forced to intervene with the Second World War and this was the beginning of the end of Mussolini?s rule.

  1. Nazi consolidation of power in 1933 was primarily due to their use of violence ...

    The success that this election also brought about for the Nazis was the improved financial situation. Hitler made a promise at a meeting with twenty industrialists to provide three million Reichsmarks. He was evidently aware that he would gain support from more areas of society, thus increasing their power.

  2. How far do you agree that the limited appeal of Mazzini's ideas was the ...

    Not every could read and those who could, may not have understood the complex language Mazzini used in his magazines and newspapers promoting national unity. Therefore, one way Mazzini?s ideas slowed the progress of national unity is that he failed to find a way to communicate his ideas effectively to everyone.

  • Over 160,000 pieces
    of student written work
  • Annotated by
    experienced teachers
  • Ideas and feedback to
    improve your own work