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Causes Of World War Ii Essay

1169 words - 5 pages

During the period from 1919-1939 the Germans were compelled to deal with the Treaty of Versailles, a document formed solely by the Allied powers to discipline Germany. Even as the people of world marveled at the end of the “war to end all wars” and thought joyously that such a war would never be fought again, they had no idea that an even greater war was brewing, a war whose origins came in the form of the Versailles treaty. World War II was certainly no inevitable war, but a result of numerous years of German pride and contempt towards rivals building up as a result of the Treaty of Versailles. The Treaty of Versailles helped cause World War II through three main atrocities towards the ...view middle of the document...

To make matters worse, land that was rich in natural resources was given to Germany’s rival, France. The treaty of Versailles, “undermined a sense of worth” for the people of Germany by stealing land (Document D). Additionally, Germany was forced to give up Prussia to Poland, another rival of Germany (Document A). These actions caused intense anti-Western sentiment and hatred of the Allied powers of France and the United Kingdom. Adolf Hitler said that “The restoration of the frontiers of 1914 could only be achieved by blood” clearly demonstrating that not only was the German people extremely angry at the territorial losses but also prepared to turn to violence in order to undo the misdeed (Adolf Hitler, Mein Kampf, Document A). Adolf Hitler also said, “No Nation can remove this hand from its throat except by the sword” symbolizing the anti-Western sentiment that enveloped many Germans who saw the Western powers as choking them out of land, money and pride; also that they were prepared to use the ‘sword’ or violence in order to change this (Document A). Territorial loss was not only embarrassing for the people of Germany, but this precious land was rich with resources and given to rivals thus fueling German hatred of their neighboring countries.
In addition to blatantly taking land away from Germany, the Treaty of Versailles also limited the number of troops that Germany was allotted. The treaty stated that, “By a date which must not be later than March 31, 1920, the German Army must not comprise more than… one hundred thousand men,”(Article 60, Document B). All of Germany’s neighbors had significantly more troops like France, which had almost 50 times more troops than Germany (reserve and active troops) causing many Germans to be indignant towards their western rivals (Document B). France had the largest army near Germany at the time and France’s enormous army only fueled Germany’s hatred of both the treaty and France. In a German political cartoon, Germany is “chained” and is being oppressed (Document B). This symbolizes how angry the people of Germany were because they were chained and nothing could be done to fix this, so the people turned to someone who could change their country, Adolf Hitler. When Hitler came to power he immediately violated the Treaty of Versailles by increasing Germany’s military far past the allotted 100,000 troops. The Treaty of Versailles was, in the eyes of Germany, a way to get...

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