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Changes In Germany After World War I That Led To World War Ii

1312 words - 6 pages

After World War I, Germany went through many changes that caused World War II. These changes were in economics, society and politics, the Nazi’s rise to power, the Treaty of Versailles, and the uniting of the Axis Powers. When all of these changes occurred, the stage was set for World War II.
The German economy suffered after World War I. (German) Germany spent $6,000,000,000 on war expenditures, property losses, and shipping losses. (Ellis, Elizabeth, and Esler 551) Many countries agreed that the Treaty of Versailles was unfair to Germany. In addition to the financial losses, Germany lost 13% of its land. Germany tried to recover from the war with social spending. Some of the projects included but were not limited to: transportation projects, the modernization of power plants, and gas works. In 1913 the German Government was spending 20.50 Deutsche Marks on each resident of the country. In 1925, 65 Deutsche Marks were spent on each resident. In 1929 every resident was receiving more than 100 Deutsche Marks in social spending. (German) Germany began to fall behind on its reparation payments in 1923. France took the Ruhr Valley in January 1923, which was a coal-rich area, by force. Workers from Germany protested and they stopped working. The German Government paid their salaries which caused the government to print large amounts of money, leading to inflation. To show how bad the inflation got, an item costing 100 Deutsche Marks in July 1922 would cost 944,000 Deutsche Marks by August 1923. In 1929 the United States Government got the British and French to agree on lowering Germany’s reparation payments. They used the Dawes Plan, which took French forces out of the Ruhr Valley and the United States gave loans to Germany. Germany began to prosper until the Great Depression hit. The Great Depression caused the German People to look for energetic leaders such as Adolf Hitler. (Ellis, Elizabeth, and Esler 551) During the war, the German economy suffered. Industrial output fell by 40% between 1914 and 1918. The technology in the factories was obsolete from poorly trained workers because the trained men were killed during the war. The work force was also weak from food shortages. The people ended up eating dogs, crows, zoo animals, rodents, and even horse meat. (Germany)
Germany had a weak political system because there were so many small parties. The Government was run by the Moderate Democratic Socialists, but they were always being attacked by the more radical parties. The radical parties included the Communists and the Conservatives who wanted a strong leader like Otto von Bismarck. (Ellis, Elizabeth, and Esler 551) The Germans struggled diplomatically because their views were ignored in the Peace Conference in Versailles. This led to the Kaiser being forced into abdication. Then the Weimar Republic rose up. (Seeds) The Weimar Republic culture flourished even as the government struggled to keep afloat. The bad times...

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