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Did Germany recover in the period 1924-1929?

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Introduction

Did Germany recover in the period 1924-1929? Having survived foreign occupation and internal subversion from the Rightt and Left, the Republic found its situation improving. The immediate crisis was halted by the courageous realism of Gustav Stresemann, who was appointed Chancellor in 1923. A genuine Liberal and leader of the German Worker's Party, Stresemann ended the policy of passive resistance and slashed government expenditure. He then proceeded to introduce the Rentenmark as a temporary currency which, being based on a mortgage of all land and industry to the value of 3200 million gold marks was theoretically secure and quickly helped to stabilizese the economy. With his finance minister Hans Uther, Stresemann concluded the Dawes Plan (1924) came a loan of 800 million Gold Marks, mostly from the USA, which enabled Germany to initiate a general economic recovery and to pay annually in reparations only what she could reasonably afford. ...read more.

Middle

The Dawes Plan opened the way for lengthy diplomatic discussion with the Allied powers which culminated in the Locarno Treaties (1925) in which Germany, Belgium & France agreed to respect each other's mutual borders. This did much to relieve international tensions, and the "Locarno honeymoon" brought Germany various advantages. In 1925 the Saar was evacuated; In 1926 Germany was accepted as a full League Member and Stresemann was awarded the Nobel peace prize. In 1927 the Allied Disarmament Commission was removed; In 1928 Germany became a signatory of the Kellogg-Briand Pact; and in 1930 the Allies left the Rhineland. These various successes bolstered support for the Republic and there were general signs that the turbulent events of 1923 had provoked an active response among those who wished to protect German democracy. ...read more.

Conclusion

Industry fared somewhat better, but dearer money caused a high level of unemployment which stood at 1.8 million even in the peak year of 1928. Most importantly loans for its continued prosperity and Stresemann prophetically warned that "Germany is dancing on a volcano.... if her short term loans are recalled, a large section of our economy will collapse". Overworked and underappreciated, Stresemann died of kidney failure in September 1929, thus robbing the Republic of one of the only talented statesmen that it was to produce. Without his steadying influence the DVP and the Reichstag quickly slipped to the Right, where the charismatic figure of Adolf Hitler continued to wax noisily about the failings of the "November Criminals" and built up popular support through his spellbinding oratory. ...read more.

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