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Jensen1

AmandaJensen
Premont
Honors10English
30March,2016
7thperiod

WorldWarIIargumentpaper:appeasementpolicy
IntheyearsbetweenworldwarsI&II(19191939),duringAdolfHitlersrisetopower
asdictatorofGermany,themajorworldpowers(France,England,Germany,America,etc.)
followedapolicyofappeasementtowardsGermanytoavoidanotherdevastatingconflictlike
whatpeopleknewthenasTheGreatWar.Whatwasapolicyofappeasement?Youmayask.
TheeasiestwaytoexplainitishowitwasexplainedtomebymyAPEuropeanHistoryteacher
Mrs.Shultz:pretendHitlerwasawhinylittlekidatthegrocerystore.Hescryingandgenerally
justbeingannoyingbecausehewantssomethinghesseen,decidedisessentialtohiscontinued
existence,andthinksisunfairhecannothave.Sotomakehimshutup,hiswellmeaningmother
givesinandbuyshimthatthing.ThismakeslittleHitlerbequietforashorttime,untilhesets
hiseyesonsomethingelse,whichhismotherthenbuysagainforhim(T.Shultz).Thiscouldgo
onevirtuallyforever,withthekidsayingeachtimeThisisthelastthing,Ipromise!,whenin
realityitsmostlikelynot.ThisissimilartowhathappenedwithHitler,exceptinsteadofsome
treasuredobjectbeingwanted,itwaslandorsuppliesHitlerdesired,insteadofamothergiving
in,itwasothercountriesandtheirleadersgivingintohim,andthethingsconsideredunfairwere
theendofwartreatiesfromWWI,whichblamedGermanyforstartingthewar,madethempay


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hugereparationssendingthemintohyperinflation,andtookawayalmostalloftheirmilitary
(Richey,WWIandModernism).Myargumentisthis:TheEuropean/Worldpowersshould
NOThavefollowedapolicyofappeasementtowardsHitlerprecedingWWII,becauseitallowed
himtogainlandfor
lebensraum
,whichinturngainedhimthesupportoftheGermanpeople,it
alsoallowedhimtoexpandhispowerandinfluenceinEurope,makingwinningthewarforthe
Alliesmoredifficult/deadly,andgaveHitlerconfidenceandsupporttotakeboldermoves
againstthetreatiesfromtheendofWWI,theAlliedpowers,andtheLeagueofNationsresulting
inmorepowergainsforGermany.
NevilleChamberlain(PrimeMinisterofGreatBritain19371940)wasoneofthemain
advocatesoftheappeasementpolicy,especiallyattheMunichConference,whichresultedinthe
Sudetenland,apartofCzechoslovakia,beingcededtoGermany(Spielvogel786787).Hitlers
landgainattheMunichconferenceinSeptember1938,theearliergainofAustriamarch1938,
andthefollowinggainofCzechoslovakiainOctober1938,weremeanttobeusedfortheideaof
Lebensraum,
orlivingspacetheideawasthatsuperiorraces(Aryanrace)neededmoreroom
toexpandtheirgrowingpopulation,sotheinferiorpeoples(Jews,Gypsies,etc.)hadtobe
removedtomakeroom(Spielvogel783).Givingthelandandpossessionsoftheremoved
inferiorracestothesuperiorrace(Germans),gotHitleralotofsupportaroundthistimefromthe
Germanpeople.Whowouldntwantfreestuff?ThissupportfromtheGermanNationaliststhen
allowedHitlertomoreeffectivelywagewar,becausepeopleweremorewillingtomakesacrifice
forthewareffortandserveassoldiersforTheMotherland.Thismadewarmoredifficultand
costlyforbothsides,areasonwhyanappeasementpolicyshouldnthavebeenfollowed.


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TheappeasementpoliciesofEuropeanpowersallowedHitlertosteadilygainalotof
land,power,andresourcesbeforethewar.Forexample,peoplefromannexedlandswereusedas
soldiers,andindustriesinthoselandswereusedtoproducewarmaterials.Hitleralsobegan
rearming,expanding,andupgradingGermanysairforce,military,andnavywhichwasagainst
theagreementinarticle231ofthetreatyofVersailles(Richey,DictatorshipsandWWII)
(Spielvogel784).Thetreatyshouldhavebeenenforcednotignoredbytheappeasementpolicies.
TheseresourcesgainedbecauseoftheappeasementpoliciesofEuropeanpowersmadeit
possibleforGermanytocauseheavydamageandcasualtiesfortheAlliedpowers,makingit
harderforthemtowinthewar.Ifanappeasementpolicyhadntbeenfollowed,andwarhad
beendeclaredafterHitlersfirstviolationofthewartreaties,beforehecouldgainsomuch
power,thenhecouldhavebeendefeatedmuchswifter,andwithmuchlesslossoflifeonboth
sides.
AdolfHitlerknewBritainandFrancewouldntwanttoorwouldntdaretotakeaction
againstGermanyifhebroketheVersaillestreaty(Richey,DictatorshipsandWWII).This
gavehimconfidence,resultinginboldermovesthanwouldhavebeenmadeifanappeasement
policyhadntbeenfollowedtowardsGermanyduringthistime.Forexample,Hitlerdaredto
annexwholecountrieslikeAustria,andpoliticallyinfiltrateothercountrieslikeCzechoslovakia,
Bohemia,andMoravia,turningthemintoNazipuppetstates(Spielvogel785787).Healso
decidedtorebuildGermanysarmy,againstthetreatyofVersailles.Alloftheseactionsin
defiancetoknowntreatiesandregulations,donebecauseHitlerknewtheredbeno
consequencesduetoappeasementpoliciesinEurope,gainedhimalotofpowerandinfluence.


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Ontheotherhand,somepeoplemayarguethatEuropeanpowerswerejustifiedin,and
shouldhavecontinuedtofollowpoliciesofappeasementtowardsGermany,evenafterthe
GermaninvasionofPoland.Duetothefactthatappeasementhadmanagedtokeeppeaceusing
thismethodsinceHitlerannexedAustriamarch12,1938(History.comGermanyannexes
Austria).EvenearlierthantheAustrianannexation,whenHitlerviolatedtheTreatyof
VersaillesbybeginningtorebuildGermanysdefensesin1936theappeasementpolicieskept
peace(johndclare.netdescribethewaysinwhichGermanybroketheTreatyofVersaillesinthe
period19351938).However,theseclaimsaregroundedinfalsebeliefs.Appeasementpolicy
supportersareimplyingthatignoringyourproblemswillmakethemgoaway.Thisisincorrect,
mostoften,whenproblemsareignoredtheygetworse.ThesameistruefortheEuropean
countriesresponsibleforenforcingandsupportingtheVersaillesTreaty(democracies).Because
Hitlersobviouslythreateningactivitiestowardstheallieswereignored,Hitler/Germanywere
abletogainalotofpower,resources,andconfidencetobeusedinWWIIresultinginmore
death,destruction,andlastinginternationaltensionsbetweencountries.IfHitlerhadbeen
stoppedwhenhefirstviolatedtheTreatyofVersailles,hewouldhavegainedlesspower,andso
thewarwouldhavebeenshorterandlessdestructive.TheappeasementpoliciesinEuropewere
notjustified,orconstructiveinanyway.
Inconclusion,appeasementpoliciespriortoWWII,shouldnothavebeenfollowedand
onlyallowedHitlertogainmorepowerandsuppliestocausemoredamageinWWII.Its
importantthatwerealizetheuselessnessofappeasementpoliciestowardsviolationsoftreaties
andaggressivebehaviortowardsothercountries,sothathumanitycanlearnfromthemistakes


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madeinthepast,andmakebetterdecisionsinthefuture.Historydoesntneedtorepeatitself.
TheappeasementpoliciesshouldnothavebeenfollowedpriortoWWII.

Works Cited
History.com.GermanyannexesAustria.29March2016.Web
Johndclare.net.describethewaysinwhichGermanybroketheTreatyofVersaillesinthe
Period
19351938.29March2016.Web
Richey,Tom.DictatorshipsandWWII.WWIandModernism.OnlineVideoClip.
TomRichey.net
.Web.23March2016
Shultz,Tiffany.APEuropeanHistoryclass.FremontHighSchool.March2016.Lecture.
Spielvogel,JacksonJ..
WesternCivilization,combinedvolume,sixthedition
.
2006

.Print.23
March2016