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In Support of Appeasement

In Support of Appeasement



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Published by Huxley10

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Published by: Huxley10 on May 10, 2008
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In Support of Appeasement Author: Liam Hogan
In Support of Appeasement
Dusting down the Real Causes of WW2
Student Name
: Liam Hogan
: 9843183
: International History of the 20
Module Code
: Dr. Ruan O’Donnell
April 9
, 2003
In Support of Appeasement Author: Liam Hogan
 The British
strategy of appeasement toward Germany, Italyand Japan during the 1930’s is normally and quite generallyassociated with the politics of naivety failure andmiscalculation.By appeasement, we mean
the policy of settling international (or, for that matter, domestic) quarrels by admitting and satisfying grievances throughrational negotiation and compromise, thereby avoiding the resort to an armed conflict, which would be expensive, bloody and possibly very dangerous
(Kennedy 1983).
 The majority of historians, politicians, and socialcommentators have vilified this appeasement policy sincethe end of, and during, the Second World War.But is it fair to blame this policy for whetting the appetite of Hitler’s megalomaniac tendencies, and thus igniting theinevitable outbreak of war? To investigate this we need to look at the facts and notempirical rhetoric.(re: Junior Certificate History Books).It is totally unjustified to state that no matter how the Anglo-Franco-Soviet states behaved prior to the war, that Hitlerwas going to try and take over the world – This viewpointwould clearly illustrate the policy of appeasement as a wasteof time. In light of what Germany, Britain, France and Russiawere
planning for, this viewpoint is grossly unfairand over simplistic.
In Support of Appeasement Author: Liam Hogan
 The key motivation for avoiding war was the sorry state of the British armed forces, whose budgets had been slashedafter the First World War to help pay off the large amounts of debt that this conflict had incurred. The Ten Year Rule of 1919 prepared budgets for the services based on theassumption that Britain would not be involved in any large-scale conflict in the following decade. Thus the defencespending, which had stood at £766m in 1919-20, had fallento just £102m in 1932. What had accounted for 3% of government expenditure in 1913, by 1933 stood at just over10%. Following an agreement with the other naval powers in1921, a cap was placed on naval construction for ten years,which had left Britain by the 1930s with a fleet of obsoletevessels that senior naval officers warned were no longercapable of defeating other naval powers; for the first timethe Royal Navy could not be regarded as the superior navalforce. The RAF had few modern aircraft (Spitfires andHurricanes only arrived as the war broke out), and had nolong-range strike capacity to attack targets in Germany; suchmissions, it was warned by the Chiefs of Staff, "might end indisaster."More disturbing than this was the perceived threat from theLuftwaffe, given Britain's lack of air defence fighters andradar network. It was feared that should Germany launchconcerted attacks against Britain, there would be seriouslosses to life and property as a result; if occupied bases in

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