The Causes of World War II
“WAR! Bombs Rain on Warsaw” in the headlines grasped the attention of the public signifying that World War II two had started; however there were few people who knew the events that caused the start of the Second World War. After World War I, some problems arose concerning terms associated with the Treaty of Versailles. The aggression of Adolf Hitler, Benito Mussolini, Hideki Tojo, and the sympathy shown by Great Britain created a substantial difference that was negative in the treatment of the German people. The last main cause of the initiation of World War II was the failure of the League of Nations. World War II was not only the fault of Hitler’s deception, but also the faults of other countries that participated in World War I due to the agreements that Germany was forced into. Foremost, the Treaty of Versailles was established to ensure that there was repayment for countries that were destroyed during World War I and punishment to weaken the army power of Germany.
The problem was that the terms of the Treaty of Versailles were not upheld as strongly as they should have been. Many Germans hoped that if they agreed to the terms, life would go back to the way it was before the war. [Author] agrees, saying that is, “Germany had been expecting a treaty based on Wilson’s 14 points and were not happy with the terms of the Treaty of Versailles” (historyonthenet.com). This foreshadows the defiance that the German people would later have and exemplifies how some of the terms were unfair.
The author demonstrates the unjust treatment of the Germans by saying, “There were not many hobs and the price of food and basic goods was high” (historyonthenet.com). It was a pressing time for Germans; they would take any chance they could to improve their current situation. Any actions which would improve their situation in the short run appeared acceptable. Succeeding the terms of the Treaty of Versailles, there was aggression and sympathy that was prominent in Hitler and the countries that enforced the treaty in Germany.
A country that was aggressive during this time was Japan. A prime example of Japan’s aggression was towards China. There is a statement that pertains to the aggression of Japan. “Japan wanted a Nipponese empire in the Pacific, extending into China and Australia” (rpfuller.com). This demonstrated the anticipation for war.
Japan and Italy wanted better standards of living for themselves. This would give Hitler the resources and power he needed to begin his plans for the fair treatment of German people because Japan and Italy would give Hitler weapons, while Hitler would trade some of his army power to support the acts by Japan and Italy. As a democratic power, Great Britain started appeasing the rebuilding of the German army. Britain was explained as a passive power as well because “between 1934 and 1937, Britain was sympathetic to German recovery. “Between May 1937 and March 1939, Britain appeased Germany” (rpfuller.com). Neville Chamberlain, the prime minister of Britain, didn’t think Hitler would cause a war. This trust shows the problem that letting the chains loosen on Germany would result in some sort of problem. Chamberlain gave Germany an inch of sympathy and some Germans took a mile. Conjointly, the League of Nations failed to provide other countries with help when those countries requested it in the face advancements of Japan and Italy. The idea of the failure of the League of Nations is supported by the following quote: “In theory the League of Nations was a good idea and did have some early successes.
But ultimately it was a failure” (historyonthenet.com). This means that the League of Nations failed to keep peace and promise to help attacked nations. Another fact that supports the idea that the League of Nations neglected its duties is that “Italy attacked Abyssinia… The League condemned the attack and called on member states to impose trade restrictions with Italy. However, the trade restrictions were not carried out because they would have little effect” (historyonthenet.com).
To promise something to certain nations means that those promises should be kept, but in this case the League of the Nations failed to keep their promise to defend nations that were being attacked and asked for help. Consequently, World War II was a direct result of the failure of the League of Nations, the aggression and the sympathy of countries towards Germany, and the failure to keep the terms of the Treaty of Versailles intact was World War II. Adolf Hitler felt there should be something to do that could allow the Germans to be treated fairly. This idea from Hitler is stated as, “People were dissatisfied with the government and voted to power a man who promised to rip up the Treaty of Versailles. His name was Adolf Hitler” (historyonthenet.com). Adolf Hitler was determined to help the Germans, but in doing so he started a very violent war. The start of the physical war began with Hitler’s command. “German tanks invaded West Prussia and Posen on the 1st September 1939 using blitzkrieg tactics” (rpfuller.com).
War was initiated by Hitler, but Britain, France, and the United States were antagonized through a breach of contracts that were setup in order to avoid another war. All in all, due to the aggression and sympathy from world nations, and the failures of the Treaty of Versailles and the League of Nations, World War II began. The lessons learned from the causes of the war would be that there was not one cause, but four causes or restrictions that caused unfair treatment which triggered rebellion in the long run. This mutiny could have been avoided if the people of Germany were not given such harsh rules and not been dealt with in such a severe manner from other nations.