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

Why did Europe go to war in 1939

Extracts from this document...


Why did Europe go to war in 1939? By 1939 Hitler and the Nazi party had slowly been breaking more and more of the Treaty of Versailles rules. They had rearmed and invaded Czechoslovakia. Also Germany had allied with Italy, Russia, and Japan and formed a union with Austria. France and Britain reacted to these events only by appeasement. In September of 1939 Germany invaded Poland. Britain and France had issued warnings to Hitler and after Poland was invaded declared war on Germany. Although France and Britain declared war, many historians would argue there were a series of events leading up to the declaration of war and it was effected both by the Nazi regime and by the League of Nations and allies. France and Britain in using appeasement almost encouraged Hitler to take more and more. But appeasement seemed the only option for France and Britain as they had a very weak military. In World War One Britain had 750,000 soldiers killed and 1,500,000 wounded and France had 1,400,000 soldiers killed and 2,500,000 wounded. Appeasement gave them time to build there forces, eventually French and British armies had been built up some what and as Hitler had gone one step too far, war was declared. ...read more.


Sure enough Hitler came to power in 1933, although looking back on it people think Hitler had a lot of support behind him and was bound to rule Germany strongly, at the time the general attitude was that Hitler would lose power quickly and very few could have foreseen that by the summer of 1934 Hitler would be supreme dictator of Germany. He achieved this by a very clever combination of methods, some legal, others dubious. His first action was to put Germany under complete Nazi rule. He then took the position of Fuhrer upon Hindenburg's death. From the start of the Nazi reign of Germany through to 1939, Hitler had been ignoring the rules of the Treaty of Versailles, in 1937 he allied with and formed an anti-communist pact with Italy and Japan. In 1939 he allied with Russia eliminating most risk of Russian invasion. Hitler also made a union with Austria. All of these went against the rules of the Treaty of Versailles. Hitler had spent most of Germany's finances on rearmament and by 1939 was ready to invade and sure enough took back the Sudetenland then took Czechoslovakia whilst they were in a state of chaos. ...read more.


In Mein Kampf (A book Hitler wrote during his imprisonment after the Munich Putsch) it shows the extremes that Hitler backed his 'Aryan race.' He was prepared to kill millions of Jews too and in his frame of mind make the world a better place. In Hitler's early years he was a soldier and it showed his 'passion for war.' From the start of his reign it was inevitable that he was going to expand the German empire. He even wrote about it in Mein Kampf. Hitler was a very strong character who was very passionate about all of his beliefs and had he never come to power in Germany it may have never had such a bold leader as to directly break the rules of such an important treaty and a war on the scale of World War Two would never have broken out. However after WW1 I believe a war was inevitable due to the unresolved issues and tension around the world at the time. Many if not all countries were dissatisfied with the terms of peace after WW1. The combination of Hitler's lust for power and the poor terms on which WW1 ended caused Europe to go to war in 1939. ...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. Why Did War Break Out In 1939?

    When Hitler met Prime Minister Neville Chamberlain he told him that he wanted nothing more than the Sudetenland where many Germans lived. Britain and France agreed to give him part of it. Eventually, Hitler wanted all of the Sudetenland, Chamberlain refused but then gave in as he wanted no repeats of the first world war.

  2. Why did Britain go to war over Poland in September 1939?

    Also many of the British public and the media, and such as The Times, Daily Telegraph, were urging the British government to resist Hitler, and to reject his demands.

  1. Why did war break out in Europe In 1939.

    Appeasement from the British & French allowed him to get away with acts such as re-militarisation of the Rhineland (in 1936, when the German army was ordered to retreat on any resistance from the French). Another example of appeasement was giving Hitler the Sudetenland.

  2. British Policy of Appeasement May 1937 - March 1939.

    and Germans, thus making the stipulation on future, potential German military action; So, when this part of the treaty was broken, the allied reaction to maintain peace should have been to defend the rules set out in the Versailles Treaty.

  1. Why did Britain go to war in 1939?

    This caused huge anger within Germany, the ideal situation for the rise of a dictator who seemed to have all the answers to save Germany. Therefore the Treaty of Versailles can be seen to be the earliest cause of the Second World War, as it led directly to the rise of Nazism, and a hunger for revenge.

  2. Why Did War Break-Out in Europein 1939?

    for 'their' damages, they had to suffer from territorial loses for example Alsace-Lorraine and Danzig, they had to limit their armed forces plus they were denied access into the League of Nations. Hitler as well as many other people (German and Non-German)

  1. Why did war break out in Europe in 1939?

    This was also interesting for Hitler because it showed a weakness in the League of Nations. This was because the league was ideally designed for this and took no action. This showed Hitler that he could almost get away with murder. In 1931-32 Japan took over the area of Manchuria.

  2. What is the tradition of animosity between racial groups in Europe during the Twentieth ...

    In Spain they settled in fairly large numbers at the same time. While some Gypsies became Muslims (in Bosnia, and elsewhere) or Orthodox (in Serbia) most European Gypsies became Roman Catholics, but kept many of their pre-Christian beliefs alongside their new religion, which caused many fractions of the church to

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