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

Germany's resonsibility in WWI and WWII

Extracts from this document...


In what ways should Germany be held responsible for bringing about World War I and World War II? Germany had taken part in both World War I (1914- 1919) and World War II (1939- 1945) as a major power, and in fact, to a large extent, Germany was responsible for bringing about the two World Wars by her aggressive foreign policies. Kaiser William II's global policy and Hitler's expansionist policy created international tension which finally led to the outbreak of the two world wars. I shall first discuss about Germany's responsibility for bringing about World War I. The Alliance System started by Bismarck after Germany defeated France in 1871 until the formation of Triple Entente of 1907 showed the first way of how Germany was responsible for bringing about World War I. The original aim of Bismarck was to isolate France. However, the alliance system caused international tensions. Eventually, the alliance system divided Europe into two armed camps, namely the Triple Alliance (1882) which consisted of Germany, Austria and Italy and the Triple Entente (1907) ...read more.


The armament race hence further strained the tense relations between the two rival camps and made war likely. In addition, Germany's extreme nationalism and expansion was undoubtedly a cause for the outbreak of World War I. The Pan- German Movement aimed at uniting all the Germans of Central Europe under one German state. However, the Pan- German Movement clashed with Pan- Slavism. Since Germany supported Austrian expansion in the Balkans, she came into conflicts with Russia as well. This further enlarged the conflicts between the two armed camps. Other than the underlying causes, Germany also contributed to the immediate causes of World War I. In the Bosnian Crisis of 1908 and the Balkan wars of 1913, Germany strongly supported Austrian expansion in the Balkans. It increased Austria's ambitions. After the Sarajevo assassination, Germany gave Austria a "blank cheque", this unlimited support towards Austria strengthened Austria's determination to crush Serbia and made the conflict between Austria and Serbia localise impossible. Germany's militarist policy was also one of the immediate causes for the outbreak of World War I. ...read more.


When Sudetenland of Czechoslovakia was annexed by Germany, Hitler's spirit of invasion was much strong. The direct outcome was the occupation of the rest of Czechoslovakia in March, 1939. Then after signing the Non- aggression Pact with Soviet Russia in August, 1939, Germany invaded Poland on 1st September, 1939 and this directly brought the outbreak of World War II. Forming co- operation and alliances with other aggressive powers actively was also another German responsibility. To help create fascist Spain as a hostile neighbour of France, from 1936 both Germany and Italy jointly intervened the Spanish Civil War. The combined German and Italian forces helped General Franco to capture Madrid and set up a Fascist dictatorship in Spain. This stimulated Mussolini's intention in further territorial expansion. The Berlin- Rome Axis, the Anti- Comintern Pact and the Berlin- Rome- Tokyo Axis aggravated the situation. Finally, the Nazi- Soviet Non- Aggression Pact which agreed to divide Poland between Germany and Soviet Union set the prelude of World War II. Al in all, the outbreak of the two World Wars was to a great extent due to Germany's aggressive expansionist policies. Both Kaiser William II's ambitious policy and Hitler's aggressive moves heightened international tensions and finally contributed to the two World Wars. 1 ...read more.

The above preview is unformatted text

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our GCSE Germany 1918-1939 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 GCSE Germany 1918-1939 essays

  1. Was german foreign policy responsible for the outbreak of wwII?

    Also Austria's soldiers, weapons and its rich deposits of gold and iron ore were added to Germany's increasingly strong army and economy. In 1938 Hitler took over the Sudetenland of Czechoslovakia then less than a year later despite stating over wise Invaded the rest of Czechoslovakia.

  2. What were the causes of World War II?

    nothing about it, following up on the idea about only caring about their own, internal affairs. In the 1920s, the League had dealt with weak countries. In the 30s great empires like Germany, Italy and Japan attacked weaker countries. The league was too weak to stop them thus letting them do everything.

  1. Germany was solely responsible for the outbreak of World War II - Discuss.

    written while he was in prison. In this book there is evidence that points to the fact that Hitler was indeed aware that in order to achieve a Lebensraum, war was inevitable. This can be supported by the fact that Hitler was rearming Germany and reintroduced conscription, despite the treaty of Versailles.

  2. Was the Schlieffen plan the cause of Germany's defeat?

    reinforcements to help with the fighting and give the other troops a rest. Another cause of Germany's defeat was the failure of German submarine warfare. This was in two parts : restricted and unrestricted. One cause of this was the lack of U-boats since all of their surface vessels had

  1. AJP Taylor's views of the causes of WWII v. Bullock's.

    Although it is obvious that Hitler's greed played an important role in his struggle for power, Bullock, like Taylor, recognizes the circumstances, which allowed and enabled him to become what he was. After the First World War and the Treaty of Versailles, Germany, suffering from a major loss, was

  2. Nazi Germany

    The purpose of the BDM was to teach women how to care for their health so they could prepare for motherhood and raise as many babies as the German population required and so they remained loyal to his Nazi regime.

  1. Causes of WWII

    Hitler used his new found arms to support Franco in the Spanish Civil War (1936-9) Hitler sent the Condor Legion of the Luftwaffe to bomb Guernica on 26th April, 1937. Guernica was razed to the ground and Franco went on to conquer the Basque areas of Spain.

  2. History controlled assessment - Germany between the wars

    1931 -Alfonso XIII abdicated and Spain became a republic. 1932 -New Reichstag elections - the Nazis became the largest party with 37.3% of the votes and 230 seats. - Over this period, Hitler toned down much of his anti-Semitic rhetoric and concentrated more on German nationalism; he won much support from the unemployed, the disaffected middle classes and younger people.

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