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

Why did Chamberlain sign the Munich Agreement on September 30th 1938?

Extracts from this document...


Why did Chamberlain sign the Munich Agreement on September 30th 1938? In 1938 most British politicians and the public still believed in a policy of appeasement to avoid war with Germany. There was still also a strong pacifist feeling and many people did not want a repeat of the First World War, as they had lost many close relatives. The Oxford Union debate in 1935; showed most of the public favoured disarmament, which meant they thought war wasn't an option. Also the British people wanted more money and resources spent on social welfare, which meant improving the standard of living, and if Chamberlain had decided to go to war in 1938, he would have looked very foolish because he would have gone against public opinion, his own foreign policy and other members of parliament. Britain was losing its grip on its empire and it wanted to preserve it. The British military was everywhere and therefore it was a long way away from home. ...read more.


Also Britain's Dominions weren't going to help, if she went to war and its allies like France were weak and unprepared. Also the French government was unreliable and unstable and if Britain went to war the French government could elect another prime minister who might decide to compromise with Germany. The USA was still isolationist and would not help Britain in a war, and it didn't join the war until December 1942. Britain was unprepared for a war militarily and Chamberlain needed time to build it up so signing the Munich Agreement, helped to prevent a war in 1938. Also Britain was an island and needed a large navy to protect its seas, because most ships were far away. The British politicians feared aerial bombing because the German airforces, the Luftwaffe, were very strong and Britain's airforce was very weak. The RAF told Chamberlain they would not be as ready until 1939, so appeasement was necessary. ...read more.


Within the government there was a little bit of tension because Duff Cooper the 1st Lord of the Admiralty was in favour of mobilisation and the French primeminister Daladier was opposed to giving concessions. Chamberlain finally convinces the French that handing over the land to Hitler is best option and as Czechoslovakia was a successor state, he tells the Czechs that Britain made their country and so Britain could dismantle their country as well. Also Chamberlain was arrogant and he thought he could persuade Hitler on his own and nobody knew that Czeckslovakia's military was stronger than they thought at the time and therefore could have put up a bigger struggle. On 30th September 1938, Britain, France, Italy and Germany attended the Munich Conference and Russia was not invited as the Western powers distrusted her. 'Rump' Czechoslovakia was handed to Germany and Hitler signed a personal promise that Germany would not fight Britain By signing the Munich Agreement Chamberlain bought time for the military to prepare for war, he kept Hitler busy with by giving concessions and avoided a war at the time. By Hyder Mushtaq ...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 International History, 1945-1991 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 International History, 1945-1991 essays

  1. Retaliation for September 11: Not An Easy Choice

    It states "Afghanistan is more than a terrorist camp overseen by an implacably fundamentalist regime. Its also the site of one of the world's greatest humanitarian crises, with up to 1 million people in danger of starvation this year." If the White House were to oppose diplomatic interventions such as

  2. Communist Purification in Czechoslovakia.

    seemed to take advantage of the country's democratic popularity in the west. Since the Czechoslovak democrats cooperated both with native and Soviet communists, the western observers became more and more disenchanted in Czechoslovak democratic attempts and claimed it as being fake and a bad example to a true western democracy.

  1. Were Contemporaries Correct in Viewing Chamberlain as a Peacemaker?

    Chamberlain especially thought that the Treaty was far too harsh, and was using appeasement to try to comply with Germany. Germany was far from fearing the treaty. The below source describes their attitude: "Vengeance! German nation! Today at the Hall of Mirrors at Versailles a disgraceful treaty is being signed.

  2. Press Treatment of the September 11th

    The racism is implicit. Who cares about Afghan peasants? No Paul McCartney concert for them. Moreover, people can be sprayed with bomb lets that blow the heads off children, and we in the west are spared, or denied, the evidence. It is clear that most of the media are suppressing horrific images, as was done in the Gulf slaughter.

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