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to what extent was collective security the most important developement beetween 1902 - 1939

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Introduction

To what extent was the search for collective security the most important development in British foreign policy between 1902 and 1939? There were several major developments between 1902 and 1939. These included the search for collective security throughout the 1920's, the signing of the Versailles treaty in 1919, the series of ententes signed between 1902 and 1907, as well as the rise of Germany, which culminated in both world wars, between 1905 and 1939. The search for collective security, which was seen during the 1920's, was symbolised by Britain joining the League of Nations. The league was the idea of Woodrow Wilson, following the First World War. Wilson believed in peace, and collective security. The idea behind the league was that countries could discuss disputes, and as punishment economic sanctions could be placed upon a country, leaving war to be a last resort. ...read more.

Middle

This was also due to Britain not seeing herself as a member of the League of Nations, but rather as her own world power. Britain also supported many of the efforts to help Germany's economy during the 1920's, such as the Dawes plan and the young plan. France did not agree with this at all, as it strengthened the German economy significantly, allowing her to rebuild her country. In many respects Britain were far too worried about France, while giving Germany too much opportunity to rebuild herself. However, following this, throughout the 1920's and 1930's Germany began to rise to power again. The Versailles treaty had created a massive desire for revenge among the German people, and Hitler conveyed this message of despise to the world. He quickly began revising the treaty, by rearming his military and navy in 1935, by creating an anschluss with Austria in 1938 and by remilitarizing the Rhineland in 1936. ...read more.

Conclusion

Despite all of these, the major development during the period of 1902 - 1939 has to be the rise of Germany, and the German question. Both the rise leading to world war one, led by Kaiser Wilhelm, and the rise leading to world war two lead by Hitler are of fairly equal importance, although it could be argued that the first of these rises led to the second, meaning it is of slightly higher importance. This also added a newfound relevance to the series of ententes signed between 1902 and 1907, as they allied a majority of Europe against Germany. Collective security was a big development, however at the time it was a fairly catastrophic failure. The Versailles treaty was also important, although Britain did not become too involved in enforcing these terms until it was too late to stop a full scale war. ...read more.

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