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Why did most German's hate the treaty of Versailles?

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PAPER 1 2001 LIAM WILLIAMS 11Hr a) Why did most German's hate the treaty of Versailles? Even before the treaty of Versailles, Germany had been torn apart by war. This had depressed and possibly angered the people because Germany certainly weren't the cause of the war, and they simply fought for defence and what they felt was right. The German's knew that they would have to pay a price for ultimate peace but they didn't expect it to be as costly as it was. They felt that because the Kaiser had been removed and democracy had been installed that the Allies would be more lenient. The Social Democrats knew that they would have great problems settling the country down into a democracy and they expected some kind of help from the Allies. Essentially, most Germans felt that Germany was not to blame for the war and justice would punish all three countries equally. When the Allies convened at Versailles in 1919, it soon became clear that emphasis of the treaty would be to punish Germany. Supported by the Germany and the USA, France wished to weaken Germany so strongly that it would never be able to mount a belligerent force again. Germany was not invited to the discussions, and they were made to sign the treaty with the threat of war as the alternative. ...read more.


It was clear that the Bavarian government had alerted them. The Munich Putsch itself was a failure on the day but some may argue that over time- in the long term it brought success for the party. It made Hitler famous and gave him the stage he needed to impress Germany. It was events like this that meant little success until 1929. Hitler was imprisoned but he learnt from his mistakes. He now focused on gaining power legally. This would be the more effective plan, but it certainly meant a slower and more laborious route to power. The aftermath of the Putsch brought further delay for the Nazis. Hitler left prison in 1925 and the party's progression could continue. The party worked hard to make itself more effective in election- but it would take time. At this point Stresemann was chancellor of Germany. He was making the country prosperous again. People confided in Stresemann, finally someone was leading the country strongly and decisively and through his alliances and treaties with other countries, such as the Locarno treaty- he was showing that democracy could work for Germany. Germany managed to pull itself out of financial crisis, mainly due to the help of the Dawes plan- a huge loan of 800 million marks from the USA. In 1928, industrial production finally surpassed pre-first world war levels. ...read more.


He also organised mass parades and rallies so everyone in Germany would know the Nazis. Many Germans were impressed by the Nazis dedication and so they earned respect. The Nazis cleverly delivered the idea that if they came to power there would be something for everyone. For example farmers were promised higher prices for their goods and shopkeepers were offered protection against big businesses. The pledges were deliberately vague though. This was not a very important reason for Hitler becoming chancellor, for it did not give much support during the period before the Wall Street clash - although it did deliver the message of the Nazis very clearly. During the Depression the German public were not so concerned with the detailed aims of the Nazis when in power. They just wanted a new government and leader who could help Germany from the great Depression. Nonetheless no one reason can explain why Hitler gained power in Germany in 1933. Many of the reasons are inter-linked. The Depression led to high unemployment because factories had closed down, and farmers and many businessmen could not sell their goods. The Depression led to millions supporting parties that worked to end the Weimar republic. Many businessmen then looked to Hitler to defend them from the communists. The deal with Von Papen led to Hitler gaining office as chancellor and eventually becoming a dictator. Goebbels' intelligent propaganda then built on the anti-Communist and anti-Semitic views that already existed in Germany. This in turn further increased the popularity of the Nazis. ...read more.

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