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3 Italian expansion, 1933 1940


Examine the reasons or Italy pursuing a more

expansionist oreign policy in the 1930s.
To what extent was there continuity in Italian oreign
policy in the 1930s?
Discuss the consequences o oreign policy in the
1930s or Italy.

A ter a 13 year campaign, the Italian

colony o Libya is subdued 1932

1933 January Hitler becomes Chancellor o Germany

Mussolini proposes the Four Power Pact July

1934 June Mussolini meets Hitler in Venice

Italy sends troops to its border with
Austria to prevent Hitler s attempts July
1935 April The Stresa Con erence

Italy invades Abyssinia October

1936 May Italy conquers Abyssinia

Mussolini initiates talks o an Axis
agreement with Hitler October Italy intervenes in the Spanish Civil War
Hitler s Germany also sends assistance
to Franco
Italy joins Germany in the Axis
1936 October
An unofcial agreement is made with
1937 Britain accepting the status quo in
Mussolini is impressed by Hitler on a
visit to Germany September
Italy joins the Anti-Comintern Pact with
November Germany and Japan, an anti-Soviet

Italy withdraws rom the League o
Italian and British agreement: Britain
1938 April recognizes Italian Abyssinia
Hitler visits Mussolini
Anti-semitic laws are passed in Italy
September The Munich Con erence

Mussolini announces his long-term 1939 February

April Italy invades Albania

Italy and Germany sign the Pact o May

Steel military alliance
Italy declares itsel a non-belligerent
1 September
when Germany invades Poland
Mussolini declares war on Britain
1940 June
and France
Italy invades Egypt and Greece

Italy declares war on the Soviet Union 1941 June

December Italy declares war on the USA

What factors had an impact on Italy s foreign

policy in the 1930s?
1. The impact of fascism
The character o the Italian people must be moulded by fghting.
In the 1 93 0s, Italian oreign policy continued to be in uenced by the
actors identifed on page 84. However, historians generally agree that
Italian oreign policy was directed by Mussolini during this period
Self-management and and that he pursued a more clearly Fascist oreign policy rom the

mid- 1 93 0s: glorifcation o war or its own sake, pursuit o imperial

thinking skills expansion, and a move away rom diplomacy and cooperation.
Re er back to the diagram on
D uring this period, Mussolini s methods became more assertive and
page 89 which identifes the key
he was more aggresive diplomatically. He continued to assert anti-
characteristics o Fascism. As
French territorial claims, but he moved away rom his relatively good
you read through this chapter,
relationship with the B ritish, instead ostering closer ties to Hitler s
identi y where Fascist ideology
Germany. This led to a series o Italo German agreements including the
appears to have shaped
Rome B erlin Axis and the Pact o S teel. Mussolini also engaged in wars
Mussolini s oreign policy.
in Abyssinia, S pain and Albania.

C H APT E R 2 . 3 : I TALI AN E X PAN S I O N , 19 3 3 19 4 0

The road Mussolini embarked on in the 1 93 0s would ultimately lead

to the Italian entry into the S econd World War in 1 940 as an ally
o Germany.

2. The impact of domestic economic isues

As with the other European countries and Japan, Italy was also a ected
by the Great D epression. The economic problems caused by overvaluing
the lira were exacerbated by this worldwide crisis. Investment rom the
US A was withdrawn, and Italian armers were also badly a ected by the
collapse in grain prices. Industry declined and unemployment grew to 2
million. The government responded with more intervention, including
bailouts or the industrialists. The B ank o Italy was on the brink o
collapse when the government set up the Istituto Mobiliare Italiano
in 1 93 1 , which gave fnancial support to banks and industries. The
allocation o raw materials was brought under government control and
direct control o maj or industries increased. The Istituto per la Ricostruzione
Industriale was set up in 1 93 3 and took over shares o companies and TOK
banks. As a result, Italy developed the largest public sector in Europe,
Discuss in pairs the extent to
excluding the S oviet Union. Indeed, by the end o the 1 93 0s, the
which economic orces are the
government controlled 2 0% o the capital o key companies. Wages that
main driving orce or historical
had already allen be ore the depression were cut urther.
change. You should consider
There were some measures that provided relie rom the impact o the the rst case study on Japan
Great Depression, such as public works programmes and the removal o the in the 1920s and 1930s as
ban on emigration. Indeed, Mussolini managed to prevent the social and well as considering this case
political upheaval that the depression precipitated elsewhere in Europe and study on Italy. Make notes rom
he retained power. Nevertheless, the economic crisis meant that Mussolini your conversation and add to
needed to distract the Italian public rom Italy s internal economic problems these as you read through this
by ostering the revolutionary spirit that he and ascism espoused. Foreign chapter.
policy would now need to be more dynamic and inspirational.
The result o this, however, was that rom 1 93 6 the Italian economy was
urther undermined by Mussolini s emphasis on autarky, and the costs o
Il Duce s wars. Thus, domestic economic actors may have been a actor
Economic independence, or
in Mussolini s decision to invade Abyssinia and intervene in the S panish
sel -su ciency.
C ivil War; nonetheless, these wars came at a high price or the Italian
economy. E ven though taxes were increased, the wars led to an annual
budget defcit o 2 8 billion lire by 1 93 9. This ultimately had a negative
political impact and undermined support or the regime rom the elites.

Who controlled Italian foreign policy in In 1936, Mussolini appointed his son-in-law, Count
the 1930s? Galeazzo Ciano to work on oreign policy. Ciano had
initially supported closer links with Germany. However,
When he came to power in 1922, Mussolini wanted to Ciano then became disillusioned with Hitler and argued
control Italian oreign policy himsel . In 1929, once his against the Pact o Steel, signed in May 1939. Ciano
authority seemed secure, he appointed Dino Grandi as advised Mussolini to create a bufer zone in the Balkans
oreign minister. Grandi was a committed Fascist who against Germany and he supported the invasion o
avoured a strong oreign policy. He wanted to move Albania. Ciano lost avour with Mussolini or his anti-
away rom Anglophile policies and demonstrate Italian German stance when Hitler swept victoriously across
strength, and ultimately ready the armed orces or the Europe. Ciano ultimately relented and supported Italy
coming war . Grandi believed that Italy should not trust joining the war with Germany in June 1940.
the League o Nations. Nevertheless, Mussolini still
directed oreign policy and in July 1932 he moved Grandi
to the position o ambassador in Britain.

Source skills
J. C alvitt C larke and C. Foust. Russia and could Italy willingly concede to any other
Italy against Hitler: The Bolshevik Fascist power hegemony in the Mediterranean s
Rapprochement of the 1 930s (1 991 ). hinterland the D anubian ( including Austria
and Hungary) and B alkan areas.
In the mid- 1 930s, Italy received 86 percent
o its imports by sea, and o these, 1 3 percent First question, part a 3 marks
passed through the D ardanelles, 1 7 percent
What key points are made in this S ource
through S uez, and 70 percent through
regarding Italian economic needs and their
Gibraltar. Hence the ascist conviction that
in uence on Italian oreign policy in the 1 93 0s?
Italy must either dominate or be the prisoner
o its Nostro Mare, the Mediterranean. Nor

E xaminer s hint: In pairs, identify three of the following points. Highlight

them in the source.
Italy was dependent on imports from the sea.
The majority of imports came through Gibraltar.
Italy had to dominate the Mediterranean.
Italy could not allow another power to dominate the area.

3. Changing diplomatic alignments in Europe after 1933

E xtract from D ino Grandi s diary, 1 93 2
I have asked myself why the Boss is so taken with Hitler. [Mussolini] has
searched breathlessly for the last ten years or so, wherever they might be
found, for allies for a revolutionary foreign policy destined to create a
new order in Europe, a new order of which He considers himself supreme
Pontiff not only in the spiritual but also in the material sense An
international action founded exclusively on the Party, on the Regime, on a
revolutionary ideology.

Social skills
Discuss the following question with a partner.
What does the quote from Grandi s diary (above) suggest Mussolini wanted to
gain from potential allies ?

To demonstrate Italy s central role in E uropean diplomacy, Mussolini

held a meeting in Rome in 1 93 3 . Mussolini s intention was to develop
an alternative to the League o Nations or E uropean diplomacy. The
Four Power Pact, or Quadripartite Pact, was signed on 1 5 July 1 93 3
in Rome. It set out that smaller nations should have less say in Great
Power relations, unlike their role at the League o Nations. B ritain,
France, Germany and Italy signed the agreement, although the French
parliament never ratifed it. The signatories agreed to adhere to the
League s covenant, the Locarno Treaties and the Kellogg B riand Pact.

C H APT E R 2 . 3 : I TALI AN E X PAN S I O N , 19 3 3 19 4 0

The resulting Four Power Pact allowed or urther Great Power

cooperation, though in reality this pact had little meaning and was
dismissed by the other powers. In Italy, however, it was heralded as a
success or Mussolini.
Nevertheless, in 1 93 4, Mussolini s actions seen as signifcant, not
only domestically, but also by the other European powers. Italy had Class discussion
promoted an independent Austria since the end o the First World Discuss Mussolini s attitude
War and so Mussolini opposed (the name given to Austria s towards Hitler s new
unifcation with Germany, which was one o Hitler s aims) . When, government in Germany up to
on the 2 5 July 1 93 4, Austrian Nazi supporters murdered the Austrian 1935. Why might Italy be seen
C hancellor E ngelbert D ol uss, Mussolini immediately mobilized his troops by the Western democracies
to the border to deter any attempt by Hitler to achieve . This as key to containing an
action was su fcient to deter Germany and Hitler did not intervene. expansionist Germany?
In addition, because by 1 93 5 Hitler s rearmament was alarming the rest
o Europe, Italy was now perceived to be key to guaranteeing the status
quo in Europe. In response to Hitler s policies, Italy, B ritain and France
met in the Italian town o S tresa in April 1 935 . The Final D eclaration
o the Stresa C on erence , signed on 1 4 April 1 93 5 , aimed to rea frm
the Locarno Treaties and to confrm the independence o Austria. The
three powers also agreed to resist urther attempts to breach the Treaty o
Versailles. Together, they protested against Hitler s violation o the Treaty
o Versailles. This Stresa Front agreed to work to prevent any uture
changes to the European settlement. (See also pages 21 4 2 1 5 .)
However, the agreement was vague and did not even specifcally name
Germany. No methods to uphold their aims were agreed. In act, Italy
had been keener than B ritain to adopt a frm stance regarding Germany;
B ritain was more concerned not to o end Hitler. None o the signatories
would sanction an actual invasion o Germany.
Nevertheless, Mussolini knew that a resurgent Germany would
righten B ritain and France, and that this could lead them to be more
accommodating towards Italian territorial demands. The Stresa Front also
gave Italy more protection rom . Most signifcantly, Mussolini got
the impression during the Stresa talks that, in working with B ritain and
France, he had gained their consent to expand Italian control in Abyssinia.
Only two months later, in June 1 93 5 , B ritain apparently broke the
principles agreed at Stresa when it signed the Anglo German Naval
Agreement with Hitler s Germany ( see page 2 1 4) . B y signing this
agreement, B ritain had condoned German naval rearmament and had
done so without consulting its S tresa Front allies. Mussolini believed that
this action ended the S tresa agreement.

Source skills
Robert Mallet, a B ritish historian and settlement o ered ascist Italy, i allied to
academic, in an academic book Mussolini and Germany, clear possibilities or the creation
the Origins of the Second World War, 1 93 3 40, o Mussolini s long anticipated B alkans,
(1 983 ) . Mediterranean and Red Sea empire. As
Mussolini stressed to Hungarian prime
In the long- term Hitler s avowed
minister, Gyualia G mb s, that same spring,
determination to overturn the Versailles

he did not intend E thiopia to be the limit o policy should consider its uture de ence rom
an Italian expansionist drive. O n the contrary, German incursions to be an absolute priority.
a ter taking E thiopia he would also conquer Meanwhile the Italian military continued to
the B ritish-controlled territories o Egypt express their own reservations to the wisdom
and the S udan, thereby linking Italian north o Mussolini s enterprise In actual act,
A rica possessions with those to the east o Mussolini had already elected to give orthodox
the continent. Italy s empire would stretch diplomacy one last try. Amid rumours that
uninterrupted rom the Mediterranean to the the German and Austrian general sta s had
Indian O cean. recently held conversations, the dictator
requested a meeting o B ritish, French and
B ut in the immediate short term Mussolini
Italian statesmen that April at Stresa, in
continued to ace domestic anxiety over his
northern Italy I Mussolini had wanted to
plans or Ethiopia. The ear that Hitler might
sow anxiety within o fcial German circles, he
well attempt a coup against Austria once Italy
had succeeded.
had deployed large numbers o troops to East
A rica remained widespread, and Mussolini First question, part a 3 marks
could not move without quelling Italian
According to this source, what were Mussolini s
anxieties which, by mid 1 93 5 , were mounting.
key motives or engaging in the Stresa Front
The oreign ministry, although having given
support to Mussolini s A rica policy, remained
emphatic in its demands that Austria should Second question 4 marks
remain an independent state. A detailed report With re erence to the origin, purpose and content
on the current European situation o 2 nd April o this source, assess its values and limitations or
concluded that Austria amounted to Italy s own historians studying Mussolini s oreign policy in
demilitarised zone , and that Italian de ence the 1 92 0s.

Examiner s hint: Remember Sel -management, social and thinking skills

that, as this is a to what
In pairs, discuss and make bullet point notes on the ollowing question.
extent question, you should
identify points that agree and Mussolini s foreign policy had only limited success up to 1 935. To what extent
points that disagree with the do you agree with this statement?
assertion that Mussolini s
foreign policy had only limited
success up to 1 935. Italian foreign policy, 1935 39
Mussolini s Italy was at war continuously between 1 93 5 and 1 93 9. The
key turning point in Italian oreign policy was the invasion o Abyssinia
in 1 93 5 3 6, which would take Italy s oreign policy on a new course.
This action was condemned by the League o Nations and limited
sanctions were imposed. Although its aggression had a negative impact
on its relations with the Western democracies, the invasion was received
positively in Italy. The conquest o Abyssinia led to a surge o nationalist
eeling and this in turn encouraged Mussolini to urther acts o aggression.

What were the domestic infuences on Italian agriculture had not ul lled Mussolini s goal o autarky
oreign policy in 1935 39? and the economy would not be able to sustain a general
war. The limited war in Abyssinia and the intervention in
There was a lack o support rom the political elites, Spain would be a drain on Italian resources. These actors
including the King, or a shi t in Italian oreign policy that had to be borne in mind while Mussolini still aspired to
had traditionally supported Britain. These groups were control the Mediterranean and maintain the momentum o
generally hostile to the Germans. The economic situation Fascistization that had ollowed the war in East A rica.
also infuenced oreign policy. Italian industry and

C H APT E R 2 . 3 : I TALI AN E X PAN S I O N , 19 3 3 19 4 0

Why did Mussolini invade Abyssinia in October 1935?

Source skills
Source A Source B
A sp eech Mussolini made to the Italian Patricia Knight. Mussolini and Fascism (2 003 ) .
p ublic the day before the Italian invasion of
The invasio n o Abyssinia was undertaken
Abyssinia, O ctober 1 93 5 .
primarily to de mo nstrate Italy s great power
It is not only our army that marches to its status and, in doing so, avenge Adowa,
objective, 44 million Italians march with that the scene o the disastrous de eat o Italian
army, all united and alert. Let others try to tro op s in 1 8 9 6 . O ne o the mo re rustrating
commit the blackest injustice, taking away aspects o Versailles had bee n Italy s ailure
Italy s place in the sun. When, in 1 91 5 , Italy to acquire any new colo nie s and Mussolini
united her ate with the Allies, how many no w intended to recreate the glories o the
promises were made? To fght the common Ro man E mp ire and achieve a place in the
victory Italy brought her supreme contribution sun to rival B ritain and France . Further
o 670,000 dead, 480,000 disabled and more mo tives were the p ro sp ect o economic
than one million wounded. When we went to gains in the orm o o il, co al and go ld and
the table o that odious peace they gave us only o A rican recruits or the Italian army.
the crumbs o colonial booty. Mussolini also tho ught o E ast A rica as a
ertile area or Italian settlement, given the
First question, part a 3 marks exp ected increase in p op ulatio n ro m the
What, according to S ource A, were the reasons or B attle or B irths. Abyssinia was in any case
the invasion o Abyssinia? the o nly remaining uncolo nized A rican
te rritory and se eme d an easy target, given
Second question 4 marks Italy s military sup eriority and its p resence
With re erence to the origin, purpose and content in ne ighbo uring E ritre a and S omaliland.
o Source A, assess its values and limitations or
historians studying the Italian invasion o Abyssinia.

E xaminer s hint: Read the provenance o Source A or the invasion and what the Italian public would
again. In response to the second question, consider the have related to at the time. It o ers an insight into
values and limitations given below. what Italians saw as important in October 1 935.
Would you have ound the same values and Limitations
Mussolini needed to justi y his policies publicly and
Which ones had you not thought o ? may not be representing the wider views held in
Italy at the time.
Do you have any comments to add?
The date o the speech may be a limitation, as
it is the day be ore the invasion and Mussolini
A value o the origin is that it is a speech made by the needs to rally support. Indeed, as this is a speech,
dictator o Italy himsel , and Mussolini directed oreign it is probably propaganda. Other motives or the
policy. The author had planned and ordered or the invasion, such as to rally public support or his
invasion o Abyssinia. personal dictatorship, would not be revealed.
A value o the purpose is that it o ers insight into The speech lacks hindsight as it was given on the eve
how the invasion was presented at the time to the o the invasion.
Italian public. As it is a speech, it will give the
The content ocuses on the justifcations, mainly
reasons that Mussolini used to justi y the invasion.
historical, or Italian expansion. It presents a highly
A value o the content is that it reveals what the one-sided perspective o Italy s position and does not
Italian government believed to be the key reasons elaborate on the specifc aims o Il D uce.

Thinking skills Thinking skills
Re er back to the terms o the In pairs, discuss the ollowing questions.
Treaty o London on page 87, 1 What key actors motivated the Italian invasion o Abyssinia according to
and the gains Italy attained rom Source B on page 135?
the Paris Peace Settlement on
page 90. In pairs or small groups, 2 Attempt to fnd evidence rom the sources and this chapter that support:
discuss the validity o Mussolini s economic motives or the invasion
claim that Italy had been given ideological motives or the invasion
only the crumbs of colonial
booty (Source A page 135) . changing diplomatic alignments in Europe as a actor in the invasion.

Musso lini s o reign policy o bj e ctives in invading Abyssinia, which

had not yet bee n co lo nize d, o riginated in the lo nge r- te rm Italian
Communication skills natio nalist ambitions to build an emp ire and to beco me a gre at
imperial p o wer like B ritain and France. He also asp ired to an empire
Draw a mind map that
akin to the classical Ro man E mp ire, which had contro lled large
summarizes the reasons
swathes o A rican te rritory.
or Mussolini s invasion o
Abyssinia. The political reason or the invasion was to consolidate Mussolini s
personality cult ( Il Duce) and to rally support behind the regime. War
or its own sake was also an element o the Fascist ideal, and this war
would give Mussolini an easy victory as Abyssinia was not modernized.
It would also be revenge or Italy s ignoble de eat to the Abyssinians
in 1 896. In addition, Mussolini would be able to bolster his own
military orces by drawing on colonial troops. However, there were
also economic reasons or conquering Abyssinia. Mussolini needed to
divert attention rom the ailings o
the corporate state and the impact o
the Great D epression. Abyssinia was
targeted in order to gain territory or
emigration and to provide an export
market or Italian goods. Mussolini
also hoped to fnd oil.
When Hitler announced German
rearmament, Mussolini brie y
hesitated in his invasion plans as he
did not want to leave himsel too
exposed in Europe when he was at
war in A rica. However, the S tresa
C on erence led him to think he
had nothing to ear; the meetings
had convinced him that B ritain and
France would not obj ect strongly to
an expansion o Italian control in the
territory. Mussolini also wanted to
demonstrate Italy s power to Germany.
Nevertheless, Mussolini did not make
his plans clear to B ritain and France
as he did not want to provoke them in
an area where they, too, had colonial
Map of the Italian invasion of Abyssinia, 1935 36 possessions ( see map) .

C H APT E R 2 . 3 : I TALI AN E X PAN S I O N , 19 3 3 19 4 0

The events What happened? Communication

As you see rom the map on the previous page, Italy had already skills
acquired colonial territory on the border o Abyssinia. The border itsel
Go to
lacked clarity, and this lack o clarity gave Mussolini the opportunity to
watch?v=op-dD3oUMh0, or
manu acture an incident that would lead to war.
search for The Abyssnia Crisis,
It was Italy that had backed Abyssinia s entry into the League o Nations 1935 6 .
in 1 92 3 and ( as you read on page 1 02 ) the two countries had signed a
This clip from The Road to
treaty o riendship in 1 92 8. However, Italy drew up a plan to annex
War: Italy shows the Italians
Abyssinia in 1 92 9 and an invasion plan in 1 93 2 . Then, in D ecember
motives and actions in
1 93 4, Italian orces clashed with Abyssinians at the disputed Wal Wal
oasis, which resulted in the death o 3 0 Italians. Mussolini demanded an
apology and considerable compensation; the Emperor o Abyssinia, Haile
S elassie, requested an investigation by the League o Nations. However,
Mussolini would not entertain the idea o a League investigation, and in
a secret order instructed his orces to attain total conquest o Abyssinia.
Il Duce made a huge commitment to the war, sending an army with
support personnel totalling 5 00, 000 to E ast A rica. The Abyssinians,
without modern weapons, were soon in retreat.
In S eptember 1 93 5 , the League resolved that neither side could be Class discussion
held responsible or the Wal Wal incident as the area had been
disp uted. O n 3 O ctober, Italy launched its ull- scale invasion, and Why was the conquest of
then on 6 O cto ber, Italian orces captured Ado wa. This had historic Abyssinia important to
impo rtance to Italy as its orces had been de eated there in 1 89 6. The Mussolini? Consider the role
League o Nations co ndemned Italy as the aggressor on 7 O cto ber of ideology as well as other
and, our days later, the League o Nations Assembly voted to impose factors such as economics and
sanctions. O n the 1 8 November, these sanctions, although limited, the impact of events outside
were p ut into e ect. Italy.
D uring the war, tensions between Italy and B ritain reached crisis
point in the Mediterranean, where B ritain had two large naval bases.
However, B ritain and France wanted to retain good relations with
Italy and to maintain the S tresa Front to contain Hitler s Germany. In
D ecember 1 93 5 , the B ritish and French oreign ministers, S amuel Hoare
and Pierre Laval respectively, drew up a secret pact which would o er
Italy hal o Abyssinia to bring about a swi t resolution to the crisis.
However, this plan was leaked to the press, and B ritain and France were
pressured by public opinion to withdraw the deal ( see C hapter 2 .6) .
Italy continued its war and, on 6 April 1 93 6, the Abyssinian army was
de eated at Lake Ashangi. Italian orces fnally took the capital, Addis
Self-management skills
Ababa, on 5 May 1 93 6, and Emperor Haile S elassie ed to B ritain.
On 9 May, Abyssinia was ormerly annexed by Italy. It became part Summarize Mussolini s actions
o Italian East A rica with Eritrea and Somaliland. in Abyssinia on a detailed
timeline. Place Mussolini s
Mussolini had his great conquest. The war had the desired impact
domestically, with a surge in nationalist sentiment that was urther
actions above the timeline.
After reading Chapter 2.6, you
encouraged by the League s condemnation and economic sanctions.
can add the actions of Britain
E ven the Italian Queen Mother had supported the war e ort, and
and France below the timeline.
participated in the call to und the war by donating her gold wedding
ring to the government.

Thinking skills
Source A with a Golden Rose.
R. Overy and A. Wheatcroft. The Road to War: Mussolini now enjoyed a new role as conqueror and
The Origins of World War II, pages 220 21 (2009) . imperialist; his reputation in Italy reached its highest point.
The threat o sanctions united public opinion behind Source B
Mussolini. There developed a strong anti-British Extracts from Mussolini s telegrams to a commander in
sentiment. In ca es, zuppa inglese was re-christened Abyssinia, 1936 37.
zuppa imperiale. The war was popular at home. Women
exchanged their gold wedding rings or iron substitutes 5 June 1936
to swell the national bullion reserves. The Queen was All rebels made prisoner are to be shot.
the rst o 250,000 Roman women to o er her ring in 8 June 1936 [SECRET]
a ceremony held at the War Memorial in Rome. A total
o ten million were collected nationwide. When the To nish o rebels as at Ancober use gas.
war began to go Italy s way in February 1936, the new 8 July 1936
commander, Marshal Pietro Badoglio, became a national I repeat my authorization to initiate and
hero. But the victory was won only with a massive war systematically conduct policy o terror and
e ort, using all the modern weapons o war against extermination against rebels and populations in
Ethiopian tribesmen armed with rifes and spears. By complicity with them. Without the law o ten eyes
May 1936 there were over 400,000 Italian and native or one we cannot heal this wound in good time.
troops in Ethiopia, and a war that was supposed to cost
1.5 to 2 billion lire in total ended by costing 1 billion lire 21 February 1937
every month. To speed up occupation the Italian air orce Agreed that male population o Goggetti over
used gas bombs on Ethiopian soldiers, both mustard gas 18 years o age to be shot and village destroyed.
and phosgene, a total o 1521 canisters, which killed and
maimed an unknown number o soldiers and civilians. In Questions
May the whole o Ethiopia was annexed and on the 9th In pairs or as a class, discuss what the telegrams in
King Victor Emmanuel was declared Emperor. The King Source B suggest about the nature o the Italian war in
received the news, Mussolini recorded, with tears in his Abyssinia. In what ways do these telegrams support the
eyes . The Pope presented the new Empress o Ethiopia points made by Richard Overy in Source A?

What were the results o the Abyssinian War?

S p eech by Mussolini, May 1 93 6
Italy has her empire at last; a Fascist empire because it bears the indestructible
tokens of the will and of the power of the Roman lictors An empire of
civilisation and humanity for all the populations of Abyssinia. That is the
tradition of Rome, who, after victory, associated the peoples with their destiny.
Lowe, C and Marzari, F. 1975.

The results of the Abyssinian War for Italy

B y May 1 93 6, Italy had won the war. Mussolini had succeeded
in creating an Italian E ast African empire. The war had been won
relatively quickly and had co st only 1 , 000 Italian casualties. Mussolini
had demonstrated Italian military might and he had expanded the
Italian empire. This was to be the peak of his foreign policy success.
Giovanni Gentile, a Fascist philosopher, claimed: Mussolini has not
just founded an empire in Ethiopia. He has made something more. He has
created a new Italy .

C H APT E R 2 . 3 : I TALI AN E X PAN S I O N , 19 3 3 19 4 0

Nevertheless, the assault on Abyssinia had initiated a Mediterranean

scare and the Naval C hie o S ta Admiral D omenico C avagnari warned
Mussolini against raising tension with B ritain. Indeed, the Italian
navy was incomplete due to unfnished building and modernization
programmes and it could not take on the B ritish Royal Navy. A naval
war between Italy and France, and their ally Yugoslavia, was possible,
but C avagnari cautioned that a naval war with B ritain would mean
certain de eat.
In addition, although the League o Nations li ted sanctions in July, the
Italian victory had come at a high economic price. The budget defcit had
risen rom 2 .5 billion to 1 6 billion lire during the war, and there was the
continued cost o maintaining 2 5 0,000 occupying troops. In October 1 93 6,
the lira was devalued by 40% , which hit the middle classes hard. Italian
trade had to shi t to Germany due to the sanctions imposed by the League.
The erocity and atrocities perpetrated by Italian orces gave them a
reputation or great brutality. Finally, or Italy, the war did not really end in
1 936. The Italians were orced to fght a drawn-out guerrilla war in Abyssinia
until it ell to the British in 1 941 .

The results of the war for collective security Source skills

The war had once again exposed the weakness Source A
o the League o Nations, which had been utterly
An Italian p oster rom May 1 93 6, Italy
ine ective in its response to Italian aggression. It
fnally has its E mp ire .
also caused Italy to move away rom good relations
with Britain and France, and closer to Germany.
Indeed, it is signifcant that, during the war, on
6 January 1 936, Mussolini told the German
ambassador that he no longer had objections to
Austria becoming a German satellite. He stressed,
however, that it must remain independent.
Then, on 22 February 1 936, Mussolini agreed to
the German rearmament o the Rhineland; this
meant Italy would no longer uphold its Locarno
obligations. (See page 1 62 or urther discussion o
the impact o Mussolini s actions on Germany.)
Source B
A cartoon by D avid Low published in the UK newsp ap er, the Evening Standard,
on 1 5 February 1 93 5 .

First question, part b 2 marks for each source Second question 4 marks
What is the message of the artists in S ources A With reference to its origin, purpose and content,
and B ? assess the values and limitations of Source B for
historians studying the Italian war with Abyssinia.

Thinking skills
1 Discuss, in pairs or small groups, the key diferences in how Source A and B
each get their message across to the viewer. Which source is more efective
in achieving this?
2 In what ways could the Abyssinian crisis be seen as a turning point in
international relations?

Source skills
Fourth question 9 marks b Using the sources and your own knowledge,
Here are some examples of the style of question discuss the results of the Italian invasion of
you could expect for the Fourth question on a Abyssinia in 1 93 6.
Paper 1 set on the Italian expansion in Abyssinia: c Using the sources and your own knowledge,
a Using the sources and your own knowledge, to what extent do you agree that Mussolini s
examine the reasons for the Italian invasion of foreign policy was wholly successful up
Abyssinia in 1 93 6. to 1 93 6 .

C H APT E R 2 . 3 : I TALI AN E X PAN S I O N , 19 3 3 19 4 0

Communciation and social skills
Write a brief plan for the own knowledge part of each of the questions a, b
and c on page 140.
Share your plans with a partner. Give feedback on each other s plans by answering
the following questions.
1 Have you and your partner structured your plans to meet the command terms
of each question? TOK
2 Are there key points that your partner has missed? Spend 30 minutes reviewing
3 What points has your partner included that you have not? the primary sources in the case
studies you have covered thus
far. With a partner discuss how
far you agree with the following
Why did Italy intervene in the Spanish Civil War statement:
in 1936 39? Sources from the time are
Mussolini s success in Abyssinia encouraged him to look or urther always biased and give an
military greatness and, when civil war broke out in S pain in 1 93 6, he incomplete picture of events.
quickly decided to intervene. Taking military action was in line with Follow up on your discussion by
Fascist ideals regarding the central role o war and society. Mussolini considering how the limitations
hoped to gain naval bases in the B alearic Islands rom General Franco of sources pose a challenge for
in return or his assistance, and had aspirations to re-establish the historians. Feedback to the class.
Mediterranean Roman Empire.
Nevertheless, Italian intervention in the S panish C ivil War was also
motivated by ideology; Mussolini responded to requests or assistance The S p anish C ivil War
rom the militarist rebels to help fght against liberal democracy and 1 93 6 3 9
socialism. Mussolini had made, as he had done in Germany, close
The S panish C ivil War
connections to right- wing groups in Spain since the installation o a new
was a war ought between
S panish Republic in 1 93 1 . He wanted to stop communism spreading
Spanish Republican
in S pain and to prevent communists rom attaining a strategically
orces, who supported
important position at the mouth o the Mediterranean. Indeed, he
the democratically
presented the rationale or intervention to the Italian public as part o
elected le t- wing
the continuing struggle against Marxism. Finally, he also intended to
coalition Popular Front
weaken France, part o his wider oreign policy obj ectives, as France
government and S panish
had close links with the le t Popular Front government that Franco
Nationalist orces who
and the generals were attempting to overthrow. Thus, Mussolini would
supported conservative
prevent France rom gaining in uence in a le t- wing S pain, and would
and right- wing groups.
strengthen his own strategic position in the Mediterranean.
These included ascists,
Zara S teiner highlights another reason: supporters o the church,
the military and the royal
Mussolini saw in the Spanish War an opportunity to fashion the new Italy
amily. The Nationalists,
and the new Italian . There is only one way to create a warlike people ,
led by General Franco, had
the Duce claimed, to have ever greater masses who have waged war and ever
attempted to seize power
greater masses who want to go to war . S teiner, 2 01 1
in a coup in July 1 93 6. A
Howeve r, unlike during his invasion o Abyssinia, Mussolini did civil war developed, when
no t have a clear plan when he sent his orces to S p ain; nor were the Nationalist orces
there clear nationalist goals that could ap peal to the wider Italian ailed to take the capital,
po pulation. Italy sent mo re assistance, including 7 0, 00 0 tro ops, to Madrid, and hal the army
Franco than any o ther country and the war raged on ar longer than remained loyal to the
he had anticipated. government.

What were the results o intervention in the Spanish
Civil War?
Although the intervention was supported by the C hurch as Franco s
orces had aligned themselves with the Roman C atholic C hurch in S pain,
it was not generally popular with Italians. Indeed, the consequences
were mainly negative or Italy:
The economic cost had been high; the lira was devalued and it lost
hal its oreign currency reserves. The total cost o the war amounted
to around 1 4 billion lire and it led to Italy increasing its trade with
One third o Italy s arms stocks were consumed by the war. Although
Italy had helped secure a right-wing regime in Europe, and was on
the winning side, Italy s military weakness had been exposed. For
example, Italian orces were roundly de eated by the International
B rigades fghting or the Republic at the B attle o Guadalaj ara in
March 1 937.
Italian submarine attacks on supply ships led to increased tension
between Italy and France and B ritain.
General Franco maintained his independence and Spain did not
become an Italian satellite state.
Italy drew closer to Germany.

Thinking skills
1 What does the extract below rom the historian Richard or France. From 1937 onward Mussolini, who
Overy suggest about: now bore sole responsibility or the three service
the economic impact that Mussolini s wars in departments in the Italian government, began
Abyssinia and Spain had on Italy to authorize substantial new programmes o
rearmament The great weakness o the
the impact o domestic economic weaknesses on Italian strategic position was the economy. Italy
Italian oreign policy? was heavily reliant on oreign sources o raw
War had become an addiction or Mussolini. His materials, particularly coal, oil and iron ore, and
conversation had always been spiced with a was very vulnerable to blockade She lacked
vocabulary o confict, but a ter Ethiopia and Spain, the real means to play the part o a great power.
he came to see himsel as a great war leader. In Mussolini declared the need or a policy o sel -
March, 1938, jealous o the King s position as ormal su iciency To ensure that the strategy worked,
head o the armed orces, he appointed himsel and the state extended controls over the economy
his monarch as First Marshals o the Empire to like in Germany, on trade, investment, and labour
create a spurious equality between them. Yet without utilization. By 1939 the state owned 80% o the
expanding and modernizing Italy s armed orces, country s arms capacity. Italy was trans ormed into
uture war are was in jeopardy The limited e ort a war economy in peacetime.
in Ethiopia and Spain orced Italy to spend almost as Overy, R and Wheatcro t, A. 2009. The Road to War: The
much o her national income on armaments as richer, origins of World War II, pages 222 23.
industrialized Germany, and twice as much as Britain Random House. London, UK

C H APT E R 2 . 3 : I TALI AN E X PAN S I O N , 19 3 3 19 4 0

Changing diplomatic alignments in Europe after 1936

The new relationship between Fascist Italy and Nazi Germany
One o the key results o the S panish C ivil War or Mussolini was that
he now committed himsel to a ormal alliance with Germany by signing
the Rome B erlin Axis Alliance on 2 5 O ctober 1 93 6. This coalition
agreement between Italy and Germany was drawn up by Italian Foreign
Minister Galeazzo C iano.

Source skills
A p ublic sp eech announcing the Rome histo ry in common. B oth believe in will as
B erlin Axis by B enito Mussolini, the determining power in the li e o nations
1 November 1 93 6. and the driving orce o their history
B oth are based on young people, whom we
This vertical line between Rome and B erlin
train in discipline, courage, resistance, lo ve
is an axis around which all the European
o the atherland, and co ntempt or easy
states animated by the will or collaboration
living Germany and Italy ollow the same
and peace can collaborate. It is not a matter
goal in the sphere o economic autarky.
o surprise that today we hoist the fag o
Without economic independence the political
anti-B olshevism
independence o a nation is doubt ul.
We have in common many elements o
our Weltanschauung [world view] . Not First question, part a 3 marks
only have National S ocialism and Fascism According to this source, what key actors do
everywhere the same enemies, in the service Mussolini s Italy and Hitler s Germany have
o the same master, the Third Internatio nal, in common?
but they have many co nceptio ns o li e and

The end of Italian participation in Collective Security Third International

Italy joined the Anti- C omintern Pact in November 1 93 7, with Germany This was also known as the
and Japan. The Pact was directed against the C ommunist International, Communist International or
and stated that in the case o an attack by the S oviet Union the Comintern. It was an association
signatories would consult on measures to sa eguard their common of national Communist Parties
interests . B y j oining the Pact, the member states now ormed the group founded in 1919.
that would become the Axis Powers. Although Italy had drawn closer to
Germany during the mid- 1 93 0s, the Axis Pact is seen by some historians
as a key turning point or Italian oreign policy. Indeed, in D ecember
1 93 7 Italy le t the League o Nations.
Italy s new relationship with Germany was most starkly apparent with
regard to Austria. As you have already read, Mussolini had promoted
and protected Austrian independence since the end o the First World
War. Indeed, he had success ully warned Hitler o in 1 93 4.
However, in 1 93 6 Mussolini told the Austrian government to deal
directly with Germany, thus implying that Italy would no longer protect
it, and in 1 93 8 he accepted when Hitler invaded Austria. This
represented a maj or shi t in the Italian position on Austria. The creation
o Austria had been a key strategic gain or Italy at Versailles, and
Mussolini s shi t in policy was not popular domestically.

Source skills
Source A suppressed, Italian military support could be
D enis Mack S mith. Mussolini (1 983 ) . relied upon to prevent a German invasion.

A ter the Nazis won power in January 1 93 3 , Source B

Mussolini had ideological as well as pragmatic The German Ambassador to Italy rep orts
reasons or closer ties with Germany. The back to the German Foreign Ministry his
victory o Hitler is also our victory was his conversation with Mussolini in January
immediate comment: a victory he had helped 1 93 6.
with arms and money and which raised the
[Mussolini] thought it would now be possible
possibility o creating a new Rome- B erlin
to achieve a undamental improvement in
axis. Hitler sent him messages o homage
German- Italian relations and to dispose o the
and admiration, and other Germans were
only dispute, namely, the Austrian problem
ready with positive encouragement or Italy
The simplest method would be or B erlin
to replace France as the dominant power
and Vienna themselves to settle their relations
in North A rica and the Mediterranean. I
in the orm o a treaty o riendship
this encouragement was sincere, here was a
which would in practice bring Austria into
basis or agreement. Tentative eelers were
Germany s wake, so that she could pursue no
there ore put out to see whether the Germans
other oreign policy than one parallel with
would agree to confne their ambitions to
that o Germany. I Austria, as a ormally quite
Poland and the B altic, leaving Italy ree in
independent state, were thus in practice to
the Mediterranean and the B alkans One
become a German satellite, he would raise no
obstacle to such an axis was Hitler s ideas
obj ection.
about racial inequality A more serious
obstacle to an entente with Germany was Source C
the Nazi ambition to annex Austria, whereas
A cartoon by D avid Low, E urop ean clothes-
Mussolini had confdently promised to de end
line , p ublished in the UK newsp ap er, the
his country against Prussian barbarism
Evening Standard on 9 May 1 93 3 .
Three times in 1 93 3 , D oll uss was brought to
Italy and given a clear promise that, i both
the Nazi and socialist parties in Austria were
C H APT E R 2 . 3 : I TALI AN E X PAN S I O N , 19 3 3 19 4 0

First question, part a 3 marks Second question 4 marks

According to S ource A, what were the key areas With re erence to the origin, purpose and content
o dispute between Italy and Germany? o S ource B , assess the values and limitations o
this source or a historian studying Mussolini s
First question, part b 2 marks position on Austria in the 1 93 0s.
What is the message o S ource C ?

Thinking and self-management skills

1 In pairs, discuss the reasons for the change in Mussolini s position towards
Austria by 1938.
2 How far was the alliance between Mussolini and Hitler an alliance of equals?

What was Italy s role during the Sudetenland See page 178 for a full account
of the Sudetenland Crisis.
crisis in September 1938?
D uring the Munich crisis in September 1 93 8, Mussolini assumed a high
profle. He wanted to be seen as a great broker o peace, helping to avert
a general war. Following C hamberlain s ailure to gain a peace, deal over
the Sudetenland a ter two meetings in Germany, Mussolini stepped in
as a peacemaker at Munich. He was hailed in E urope as the architect
o peace.
However, it was clear by this time that Mussolini was now subservient
to Hitler; in act, he had simply put orward Hitler s own plan or the
S udetenland. In March 1 93 9, Hitler broke the Munich Agreement and
invaded the rest o C zechoslovakia.
The Munich Agreement highlighted the weakness o Britain and France,
and Mussolini was now determined to take advantage o this. In November
1 938, he instructed the Italian parliament to demand the annexation o
C orsica, Nice and Tunis rom France. Mussolini believed that he could win
a war against France, and do so with German support. B ritain had shown
itsel desperate to prevent a war, at almost any price.

Source skills
Source A The bars o the prison are C orsica, Tunisia,
Mussolini s sp eech to the Fascist Grand Malta, C yprus; the guards o this prison are
C ouncil, February 1 93 9. Gibraltar and Suez. C orsica is a pistol pointed
at the heart o Italy; while Malta and C yprus
Italy is surrounded by an inland sea which is are a threat to all our positions in the central
connected to the oceans by the S uez C anal and western Mediterranean. Greece, Turkey,
and by the straits o Gibraltar, dominated by Egypt are all states ready to link up with Great
the guns o Great B ritain. B ritain and complete the political and military
Italy there ore does not have ree access to the encirclement o Italy
oceans; Italy there ore is actually a prisoner in From this situation, you can draw the
the Mediterranean and the more populated ollowing conclusions:
and power ul she becomes the more she will
su er rom her imprisonment.

1. The task o Italian policy, which cannot presented by Western weakness to change
and does not have territorial aims in the map o the world , to make Italian policy
continental Europe except or Albania, is genuinely independent o the approval o the
initially to break the bars o the prison. West. B ut at the same time he knew that Italy
was not yet strong enough to risk war with
2. O nce the bars have been broken, Italian
a maj or state. Tied down militarily in A rica
policy has only one direction: to march to
and S pain, with a weakened economy, Italy
the ocean.
did not pose the same threat as Germany.
Which ocean? The Indian Ocean, connecting C hamberlain con essed that i he could get
Libya to Ethiopia through the Sudan, or the a German settlement he would not give a
Atlantic Ocean through French North A rica. rap or Musso . O n the other hand Mussolini
In both cases, we come up against Anglo- was aware that B ritain and France were not
French opposition. It is stupid to try to resolve the powers they had been in the 1 92 0s. His
this problem without covering our backs analysis o the old empires as decadent and
on the C ontinent. The policy o the Rome- spineless, frst ormulated in 1 93 5 , seemed
B erlin Axis thus caters or this undamentally truer a ter Munich.
important historical question. First question, part a 3 marks
Source B What, according to S ource A, are key oreign
Richard O very and Andrew Wheatcroft, policy aims or Mussolini s Italy?
B ritish p rofessors of history, in an academic Second question 4 marks
book The Road to War: The Origins of World War
With re erence to its origin, purpose and content,
II (2009) .
assess the values and limitations o Source B or
A ter Munich Mussolini s options became historians studying Mussolini s oreign policy in
narrower still. The German success ed his the 1 93 0s.
desire to share with Hitler the opportunity

Class discussion Why did Italy invade Albania in April 1939?

Hitler broke the terms o the Munich Agreement in March 1 93 9 when
Read Source A again.
he invaded the rest o C zechoslovakia. Nazi Germany had now gone
Discuss the following beyond revision o the Treaty o Versailles and had seized control o a
questions: sovereign state. Mussolini had not been consulted by Hitler. He was only
1 What continuity was there in in ormed o the conquest a ter the act. Mussolini now wanted to regain
Mussolini s foreign policy in the initiative and emulate Hitler s success.
the 1930s? O n 7 April 1 93 9, Italy made a punitive assault on Albania. The invasion
2 What changes had occurred o Albania was rather meaningless as the country had been or some
by 1939 in Mussolini s time a satellite state ( see page 1 01 ) . However, Mussolini wanted to
foreign policy objectives? assert Italian strength in order to imitate Hitler s success ul expansion,
intimidate Yugoslavia, and pursue his ambition o dominating the
Adriatic. D ino Grandi claimed that the conquest o Albania would open
the ancient paths of the Roman conquests in the east to the Italy of Mussolini
and threaten B ritain with the loss of its naval bases, and our complete
domination of the Eastern Mediterranean .

C H APT E R 2 . 3 : I TALI AN E X PAN S I O N , 19 3 3 19 4 0

Italian forces landing at Durazzo, Albania

How did Italy take over Albania?

King Zog o Albania had attempted to assert some independence
rom Italy when in 1 9 34 he signed trade agreements with Greece and
Yugoslavia. He had also re used to be intimidated when Mussolini
sent warships to the region. When, on 2 5 March, Mussolini sent an
ultimatum to the capital, Tirana, demanding agreement to the Italian
occupation o Albania, King Zog re used.
Zog had attempted to keep the Italian ultimatum secret. However, the news
was leaked and even the distraction o the birth o a royal baby, his heir, on
5 April did not prevent widespread anti-Italian demonstrations on 6 April.
Mussolini sent 1 00 planes to y over Tirana dropping lea ets telling the
Albanians to submit but the demonstrators demanded weapons to fght
the Italians. Then, although a mobilization o the Albanian reserves was
issued, many Albanian o fcers and government o fcials ed the country.
Nevertheless, King Zog broadcast a public address to his people stating he
would resist Italian occupation.

Source skills
Source A consideration be given to an outright invasion
G. B ruce S trang. On the Fiery March: Mussolini o Albania as a means o securing Italian
prepares for war (2 003 ) . domination o the Adriatic. D etermined to
secure some orm o immediate gain rom their
C iano had been considering annexing Albania. developing, i tricky, relationship with B erlin,
The Anschluss, while disquieting or Italy, Mussolini and C iano ordered the operation to
also threatened Yugoslavia. He mused that go ahead in early April. The invasion, which
[Yugoslav Prime Minister] S toyadinovic s need included a naval bombardment o the port o
or Italian riendship might mean that the D urazzo, brought widespread condemnation,
Yugoslavian prime minister would be prepared and precipitated yet another crisis in Whitehall.
to sacrifce Albania s independence in order to It also poured scorn on Mussolini s declaration
secure an Italo-Yugoslav alliance. Mussolini o peace ul Italian intentions during his
later agreed, saying that he was prepared to meeting with C hamberlain in January.
ace a war, as long as we get Albania . C iano s
tour o Albania, preceding Hitler s visit to Italy, Third question 6 marks
had represented a kind o reconnaissance C ompare and contrast the views expressed in
mission; Mussolini and C iano needed better S ource A and S ource B regarding Italian motives
in ormation to determine whether or not or invading Albania in April 1 93 9.
their proj ect was desirable or easible. Upon
E xaminer s hint: Take a copy o the above
his return, C iano submitted a report that
sources. Using di erent coloured pens to underline or
encouraged Mussolini s expansionist desire.
highlight the text, identi y the ollowing comparisons
Albania had excellent agricultural potential,
and contrasts.
C iano wrote, and had very extensive deposits
o coal, though no one had yet completed a Comparisons
ull list o Albania s potential mineral wealth. Mussolini had been considering annexing
On the strategic side, there were several Albania or some time.
advantages. In the wake o Anschluss, German
economic, cultural, and political tentacles There were strategic reasons or annexing Albania.
would reach into the ormer Austrian sphere The Italian relationship with Germany
o in uence. A frm warning rom Italy and infuenced Italy s decision to invade.
subsequent annexation o Albania would
C ontrasts
prevent any urther German penetration there.
Source A highlights the role o the Italian Foreign
Source B
Minister Ciano in the decision to invade, whereas
Robert Mallet. Mussolini and the Origins of the Source B highlights the role o the Italian Navy.
Second World War (1 983 ) .
Source B ocuses on the motive o dominating
Less than a month a ter Hitler took Prague, the Adriatic, whereas Source A ocuses on the
the regime in Rome ordered the invasion o economic gains to be made in Albania.
Albania. The idea o an outright annexation o
the B alkan state had been under consideration Source A suggests the invasion was to prevent
by Mussolini since the time o Hitler s visit Germany increasing infuence in the area,
to Rome. It had also been the subject o whereas Source B suggests that it was motivated
some discussion by the naval sta and the by Italy attempting to gain rom its developing
chie s o sta as a whole. As we have already relationship with Germany.
seen, C avagnari had urged B agoglio to give Source A only considers the reasons or the invasion,
the Italian strategic position in the Adriatic whereas Source B also considers the results,
greater ocus rom his very frst days in charge speci cally the impact on relations with Britain.
o the navy. Subsequently, the naval sta
had demanded, in the immediate a termath
o the Mediterranean crisis o 1 93 5 , that
C H APT E R 2 . 3 : I TALI AN E X PAN S I O N , 19 3 3 19 4 0

On 7 April, led by General Al redo Guzzoni, Italy invaded Albania

with a orce o 1 00, 000 men and 600 aircra t. The Albanian army that
Class discussion
aced them had only 1 5 , 000 badly equipped troops which had been In small groups, discuss the
trained by the Italians. King Zog had hoped to fght a war o resistance impact of Fascism on Italian
in the mountains, but Italian agents sabotaged the Albanians limited foreign policy up to April 1939.
equipment. B y the a ternoon o the very frst day o fghting, all ports Does everyone in your group
were in Italian hands. The King and his amily ed to Greece. agree on the impact of fascism
on foreign policy?
On 8 April, Italian orces entered Tirana and seized control o all
government buildings. Then, on 1 2 April, the Albanian parliament What conclusions can be drawn
deposed King Zog in absentia and voted to unite with Italy in personal from your discussions?
union .
Albania withdrew rom the League o Nations on 1 5 April 1 93 9. The
Italians then set up a Fascist government under S he qet Verlaci. The
Albanian oreign o fce was merged with the Italian oreign ministry and
the Albanian army was put under Italian command. Mussolini declared
the o fcial creation o the Italian E mpire and King Victor E mmanuel,
already E mperor o Ethiopia, was crowned King o Albania.
Mussolini would later use Albania as a base rom which to launch an
invasion o Greece on 2 8 October 1 940.

Italy and the Second World War

Changing diplomatic alignments in Europe after 1939
The Pact o S teel, or Pact o Friendship and Alliance, was signed between
Italy and Germany on 2 2 May 1 93 9. The Pact comprised two sections:
the frst was a declaration o trust and cooperation between the two
nations; the second, a secret protocol, ostered a union o military and
economic policies. The original intention had been to include Japan in
the Pact but Japan had wanted the ocus to be anti- S oviet, whereas Italy
and Germany wanted the agreement aimed at B ritain and France. (S ee
pages 1 81 1 82 or more discussion o the Pact o Steel.)
D espite the Pact o S teel s apparent show o unity, Hitler and his oreign
minister, Ribbentrop, negotiated the Nazi S oviet Pact in August 1 93 9
between the S oviet Union and Germany ( see page 1 83 ) . Mussolini was
only told about the agreement two days be ore it was signed.

Source skills
Richard O very and Andrew Wheatcroft. The dangerous commitments; public opinion was
Road to War: The Origins of World War II (2009) . strongly anti- German. Secret police reports
showed a growing wave o opposition to war,
Now that Mussolini had restored his prestige
economic crisis and the link to Germany
in Albania by matching German with Italian
Mussolini knew that he was increasingly
dynamism , he began to contemplate a
on his own and resented the humiliating
unilateral approach to Germany with the o er
evidence o anti- German sentiment. No doubt
o an alliance which he was to call the Pact o
honour had something to do with his decision
B lood . There was strong resistance to such an
In May he sent C iano to B erlin with
idea inside Italy, even rom the ranks o senior
authority to sign an immediate agreement
Fascists. The generals were hostile to urther

with Hitler pledging ull military assistance might neutralize the threat rom the West
in the event o German involvement in war. over Poland.
On 2 2 nd May the agreement was signed;
Mussolini changed its name to the more First question, part a 3 marks
teutonic Pact o S teel . German leaders were According to Overy and Wheatcro t, why was
surprised and suspicious at Mussolini s move, there resistance in Italy to the idea o a Pact o
though pleased enough that Italian promises S teel with Germany?

TOK Why did Italy remain a non-belligerent in 1939?

When Hitler invaded Poland on 1 September 1 93 9, he unleashed a
In pairs consider how the
general European War. D uring negotiations over the Pact o S teel,
Pact o Steel may have been
Mussolini had suggested that Italy would not be ready or a general
perceived internationally
war until 1 943 . Thus, when Hitler ignited war over Poland, Mussolini
when it was signed. Why might
declared Italy a non- belligerent.
historians view the agreement
diferently to contemporaries? It would seem that Mussolini s response to the outbreak o war in Europe
in September 1 939 was against his aims o creating a warlike militarized
society and his view that war strengthened a nation. It was also against
the terms o the Pact o Steel with Hitler. Some historians have argued
Thinking skills that rom 1 936 Mussolini had sealed the ate o Italy, and rom then on he
was on a path directed by Nazi Germany. However, the Italian historian
Italian government Renzo De Felice asserts that this was not the case and that Mussolini
expenditure for had continued to consider an alliance with Britain and France against
defence, 1931 40 Germany until 1 940. (D e Felice has been criticized by le t-wing historians
in Italy, such as Paolo Alatri, or being too sympathetic to Mussolini and
Year Lire (millions) an apologist or ascism.) However, it could be argued that Mussolini
was being realistic in not joining the war. Italy had been waging war or
1931 4,890
several years, in A rica and in Europe, and the country was war weary
1932 4,880 and could not a ord to j oin a general European con ict.
1933 4,300
Why did Italy join the war in June 1940?
1934 5,590
D espite having declared Italy non- belligerent, it was di fcult or
1935 12,624 Mussolini to keep Italy out o the war or several reasons:
1936 16,573 Not to j oin the war was something o an embarrassment or the
1937 13,272 Fascist leader; it was contrary to his Fascist doctrine and at odds with
his portrayal o confdent and decisive leadership as Il Duce.
1938 15,028
Mussolini did not want Italy to become a lesser rank power by
1939 27,732
staying neutral; he did not want to be another Switzerland . In
1940 58,899 April 1 940, he said: To make a people great [the country] must be sent into
battle .
Overy, R and Wheatcro t, A.
2009. The war could give Mussolini the opportunity to radicalize the
In pairs discuss what the table regime and to remove the in uence o conservatives and the C hurch.
above suggest about Italy s I Italy remained neutral and Germany won the war, Europe would
de ence spending. be dominated by a Germany that would be hostile towards Italy
because it had remained neutral.
The war could bring territorial gains and perhaps control over the

C H APT E R 2 . 3 : I TALI AN E X PAN S I O N , 19 3 3 19 4 0

However, in the end, the Italian motives for joining the Second World War
in June 1 940 were predominantly economic. Germany had been a principal
buyer of Italy s food and textiles, and by August 1 939 it owed Italy US $40
million. Italy received German coal in return and became dependent on it.
This German coal two thirds of the Italian supply had to be delivered by
sea. In March 1 940, B ritain blockaded all German coal ports.
In June 1 940, Mussolini declared war on B ritain and France.

Source skills
Source A Source B
Mussolini s declaration of war on B ritain and A 1 941 p oster showing Italian, Jap anese,
France, June 1 940. German and Italian soldiers attacking. The
text reads Victory! For the new social order,
After having solved the problem of our
for civilization .
land frontiers, we are taking up arms in
establishing our sea frontiers. We want to
break the territorial and military chains that
are strangling us in our own sea. A nation of
45 million souls is not truly free unless it has
free access to the ocean.
This gigantic struggle is only one phase of the
logical development of our revolution it
is the struggle of young and fertile peoples
against sterile ones who stand on the verge
of decline; it is the struggle between centuries
and two ideas.
Delzell, C. 1971.
First question, part a 3 marks
What are the key points made by Mussolini in
S ource A?

First question, part b 2 marks

What is the message conveyed by Source B ?

Perspectives support. Mussolini continued to ollow this plan until his
decision to enter the Second World War in June 1940.
Italian historiography
In general, le t-wing historians in Italy assert that The British historian AJP Taylor
Mussolini had an overtly aggressive oreign policy and Taylor suggests that Mussolini had expansionist goals,
expansionist aims. The right-wing historians, such as but that there was a lot o confict between the oreign
Renzo De Felice (Mussolini s Italian biographer) , argue policies o Hitler and Mussolini. He argues, however, that
that Italy did not have large-scale expansionist plans. De Mussolini thought Hitler would agree to leave Austria
Felice views Mussolini s oreign policy in the context o independent and that Italy could then play France and
the policies pursued be ore 1914 by the liberal Italian Germany o against each other while gaining concessions
government. He argues that, rom the 1920s up to at least rom both. The problem was that Hitler intended to achieve
1935, Mussolini wanted to get France s agreement to Anschluss.
establish Italy as a great power with an expanded empire The German historian Gerhard Schreiber
in North A rica. To this end, he was advised to pursue
the policy o the pendulum or, in other words, to be the Schreiber sees Mussolini s oreign policy as dependent
decisive weight in European relations. In addition, the on socio-economic domestic policy. In his view, oreign
right-wing historians generally claim that the alliance policy was used or propaganda purposes, and its real
with Hitler s Germany was not sealed in order to pursue aim was to gain domestic consensus and limited imperial
imperialist objectives. Britain s pressure on France to expansion. He claims that Mussolini had no clear strategy
ollow sanctions over Abyssinia may have ostered a aligned to Nazi Germany, and was more a victim o his
new course. Felice suggests that Mussolini remained own public promises to his people that he would create a
equivocal about Hitler, and hoped to attain his objectives Fascist empire. By the summer o 1940 he there ore had
by making one side and then the other pay or his no choice but to join Germany in a general European war.

TOK Mussolini s actions in the war up to 1941

Following Mussolini s declaration of war, there were some limited air
In small groups review the
raids and skirmishes between Italy and France before an armistice came
sources by historians in this
into effect on 2 5 th June 1 9 40.
chapter and investigate other
historians who have written Mussolini expanded the war in E urop e in the Mediterranean and
on Italian oreign policy in the into No rth Africa. Italian forces invaded E gypt from the Italian colony
1930s. Where possible, nd of Libya, whilst another Italian force invade d Greece from Albania.
historians writing in di erent However, both of these Italian offensives failed due to the B ritish
languages and at di erent times. response. Mussolini s failures meant Hitler s fo rces were drawn into
What di erent viewpoints can both the B alkans and North Africa. German forces took Yugoslavia
you nd? and Greece in April 1 9 41 , and forced an evacuation o f B ritish forces.
Hitler s fo rces, under General Rommel, had pushed the B ritish back
Consider the origin and purpose and advanced as far as E l Alamein in E gyp t by June 1 9 42 .
o the publications you gather.
Discuss the extent to which the
historian s views seem to be Self-management skills
infuenced by preoccupations
Consider Mussolini s oreign policy aims:
at the time o writing.
Do you agree with the idea that increase national pride dominate the Mediterranean
historical accounts are developed consolidate domestic support or build an empire, gain spazio
by individual historians rather his regime vitale(living space) , and expand
than through collaboration revise the settlement o 1919 20 territories in A rica
between historians? How oster the spread o Fascism.
does this compare with the dominate the Balkans
methodology in other subjects For each o these aims, identi y the extent to which it had been achieved by 1941
such as the natural sciences? and give evidence or your conclusions.

C H APT E R 2 . 3 : I TALI AN E X PAN S I O N , 19 3 3 19 4 0

Full document question: Italy s invasion of Abyssinia

Source A will be no need whatsoever o fcially or a
La domenica del C orriere, weekend declaration o war and in any case we must
sup p lement of the Italian newspaper always emphasise the purely de ensive
Corriere della Sera, dep icting Italian character o operations. No one in Europe
B lackshirts in action against Abyssinian would raise any di fculties provided the
forces, January 1 93 6. prosecution o operations resulted rapidly
in an accomplished act. It would su fce to
declare to E ngland and France that their
interests would be recognised.

Source C
Ruth Henig. The Origins of the Second World
War 1 93 3 41 (1 985 ) .
Since his ascension to power in 1 92 2, the
Fascist leader had made no secret o his
ambition to raise Italy s status as a European
power by increasing its in uence around the
Mediterranean and by expanding its empire.
Unlike Japan, however, Mussolini lacked a
strong economic base and well- equipped,
e ective military orces, and the onset o
the D epression made it even harder or him
to secure them. Thus he aimed in the short
term to seek glorious expansion on the cheap,
possibly in A rica at the expense o Abyssinia,
but or that he needed the agreement, or at
least tacit consent, o B ritain and France
Mussolini was inclined more and more towards
the prospect o a glorious, short, triumphant
war o conquest.

Source D
Martin B linkhorn. Mussolini and Fascist Italy,
(1 984) .
Source B The conquest o E thiopia represented
Memorandum from Marshal B adoglio, C hief Musso lini s accomplishment o what had
of General S taff to Mussolini, D ecember 1 93 4. been an Italian nationalist dream or hal
The problem o Italian- Abyssinian relations a century. Neither the p roblems o the
has very recently shi ted rom a diplomatic depression nor the A rican interests o certain
plane to one which can be solved by orce industrial pressure groups were su fcient to
alone The obj ect is nothing more or dictate it. E xisting colonies were ailing to
less then the complete destruction o the attract the millio ns o potential emigrants
Abyssinian army and the total conquest o beloved o ascist propaganda, and were
Abyssinia. In no other way can we build proving unrewarding to the ew tho usand
the Empire The speedier our action the who actually settled there; mo reover, their
less likely will be the danger o diplomatic administration, p olicing and economic
complications. In the Japanese ashion there in rastructures constituted a considerable
drain on the Italian treasury. The explanation
or the attack on E thiopia thus lies in First question, part b 2 marks
ascism and its D uce. The ascist need or What is the message o the artist in S ource A?
excitement, con ict and dramatic success was
per ectly p ersonifed in Mussolini himsel Second question 4 marks
and sanctifed by the puerile machismo o the With re erence to its origin, purpose and content,
D uce cult. O ther dictators such as Franco in assess the values and limitations o Source B or
S pain and S alazar in Portugal constructed historians studying the Italian invasion o Abyssinia.
personal cults on the ap peal o stability
and lack o excitement. Neither Mussolini s Third question 6 marks
personality no r the psychology o ascism C ompare and contrast the views expressed in
rendered such a thing co nceivable. S ource B and S ource C regarding Mussolini s
motives or invading Abyssinia.
First question, part a 3 marks
According to S ource B how should an Italian Fourth question 9 marks
invasion o Abyssinia be executed? Using the sources and your own knowledge, analyse
the reasons or the Italian invasion o Abyssinia.

Class discussion References

B linkhorn, M. 1 984. Mussolini and Fascist Italy. Methuen. London, UK
Source B was written in 1934.
Which events does it refer to C alvitt C larke, J and Foust, C . 1 991 . Russia and Italy against Hitler: The
when it says: in the Japanese Bolshevik-Fascist Rapprochement of the 1 930s. Greenwood Press. New York,
fashion there will be no need for USA
a declaration of war... What links
D e Felice, R. 1 981 . Mussolini il duce: Lo Stato totalitario (1 936 40). E inaudi.
are suggested here between Turin, Italy
events in Asia and Japanese
expansionism and Italian D elzell, C . 1 971 . Mediterranean Fascism, 1 91 9 45: Selected Documents.
expansionist plans? Macmillan. London, UK
Henig, R. 1 985 . The Origins of the Second World War 1 933 41 . Routledge.
London, UK
Knight, P. 2 003 . Mussolini and Fascism. Routledge. London, UK
Lowe, C and Marzari, F. 1 975 . Italian Foreign Policy, 1 870 1 940. Routledge.
London, UK
Mack Smith, D . 1 983 . Mussolini, page 2 1 0. Paladin B ooks. London, UK
Mallet, R. 1 983 . Mussolini and the Origins of the Second World War, 1 933 40.
Palgrave Macmillan. London, UK
O very, R and Wheatcro t, A. 2 009. The Road to War: The Origins of World
War II. Random House. London, UK
S teiner, Z. 2 01 1 . The Triumph of the Dark: European International History
1 933 1 999. O x ord University Press. New York, USA
S trang, G. 2003 . On the Fiery March: Mussolini Prepares for War. Praeger.
Westport, C T, USA

2.4 German expansion, 1933 1938


Examine the ways in which Hitler challenged the post-war settlement.

Discuss the consequences of Hitler s actions for the international situation.

Adolf Hitler, taken in 1933

Hitler becomes German Chancellor 1933 January

February Hitler introduces a programme of

Hitler leaves the Disarmament Conference rearmament
and announces the intention to withdraw October
Germany from the League of Nations
1934 January Germany signs a non-aggression pact with
Saar Plebiscite 1935 January

March Stresa Agreement

Anglo German Naval Treaty

Italian invasion of Abyssinia
1936 March Germany remilitarizes the Rhineland
Hitler sends military support to Franco s
nationalists in Spain
August Hitler s Four Year Plan is drafted
Anti-Comintern Pact is made with Japan
Rome Berlin Axis November

1937 Hossbach Memorandum

As we have seen, Hitler s main foreign policy aim after achieving power
was to destroy the Versailles Peace S ettlement, which had to be carried
out alongside rearmament. This was achieved between 1 93 3 and 1 93 8
and, in the process, the stage was set for further territorial claims and the
outbreak of general war in Europe in 1 93 9.

Changing diplomatic alignments in Europe

after 1933
The response of B ritain and France to his actions after 1 9 33 would
be key for Hitler and his goal of overturning the Treaty of Versailles;
Germany s position in E urope was still vulnerable and it remained under
the constraints of the Treaty of Versailles. Fortunately for Hitler, the
international situation after 1 93 3 worked to his advantage.

B ritain was pre- occupied not o nly with the economic crisis but also
by events in the Far E ast, where it was worried about Japanese
expansion. Its resources were already overstretched, with its main
prio rity being the safety of the B ritish E mpire. Many B ritish politicians
also considered the Treaty of Versailles to be unfair and supported
some redress of legitimate grievances . Many right- wing politicians
in B ritain were also afraid of the communist dictato r, S talin, and had
sympathy with Hitler, who they also saw as a buffer to the spread of
communism from the E ast.

The Little Entente France

This was a series of
France was very concerned by the possible German threat but was too
treaties between Romania,
weak to act on its own, especially after the failure of its 1 923 intervention
Czechoslovakia and Yugoslavia,
in the Ruhr. It was also politically divided, following a series of weak
which were concluded from
governments, and had major economic problems. Lacking support from
1920 to 1921, and aimed to
the USA or B ritain in the task of preserving the Versailles settlement, it
prevent Austria and Hungary
built a defensive line of fortresses along the Maginot Line between 1 92 9
from regaining territory lost
and 1 93 8. It also developed alliances with countries on Germany s eastern
after the First World War.
borders: Poland and The Little Entente countries Czechoslovakia,
Romania and Yugoslavia.

The economic depression meant that the US A was focused on domestic
concerns and was unlikely to change its isolationist stance.

O ther factors also worked in Hitler s favour:

The international economic situation was encouraging national
insularity rather than collective security.
The memories of the First World War were still acute, and the horror
of this war made many determined to take any measures necessary
to prevent another war.

C H APT E R 2 . 4 : G E R M AN E X PAN S I O N , 19 3 3 19 3 8

The need to avoid another war was rein orced by the military
weakness o B ritain and France at this time.
B ritain and France were unable to agree on a common policy or
dealing with Hitler.
The League o Nation s perceived ailure to deal e ectively
with Japanese expansion in Manchuria was a blow to both the
Washington System and to the League itsel .
The revision o the Treaty o Versailles had already begun; B ritain
and France evacuated the Rhineland in 1 92 9 3 0 and German
reparation payments were e ectively cancelled at the Lausanne
C on erence o 1 93 2 .
However, as the historian Zara Steiner writes,
even allow in g forthebreakdow n ofthein tern ation alregim e, H itlerm oved
w ith a speed an d ultim atepurposethat clearly distin guished him from his
predecessors S teiner, 2 01 1 : 95

Germany s challenges to the post-war

settlements, 1933 38
Although the international situation avoured Hitler s aims, he still
had to be care ul to avoid an international backlash. He thus ollowed
a cautious policy. Publicly, Hitler claimed that he desired only peace,
and he worked care ully to de use any potential opposition. However,
his actions over the next fve years undermined collective security: he
worked to withdraw Germany rom multilateral commitments that
might limit his action, he isolated France by undermining existing
alliances, and, at the same time, he negotiated alliances with B ritain and
Italy. Alongside these actions, Hitler was able to e ectively challenge the
Treaty o Versailles and to increase the prestige and power o his own
dictatorship and o Germany within E urope.

Ch allen gin g th e Treaty ofVersailles:With draw alfrom th e

Disarm am en tCon feren ce
Article 8 o the C ovenant o the League o Nations had demanded
that national armaments be reduced to the lowest point consistent
with national sa ety . However, the di fculties in implementing an
international disarmament policy meant that it took until 1 9 3 2 or an
international con erence to be organized.
When the D isarmament C on erence fnally convened in Geneva in
1 93 3 , there was still little consensus on how disarmament could be
achieved. France, in particular, was unwilling to disarm with the new
threat o Nazism on its borders. The events un olding at the same time in
Manchuria were also not conducive to thinking about disarmament.
Furthermore, it was clear that B ritain and France did not agree about the
way that Germany should be treated, with B ritain indicating that it was
prepared to make concessions to Germany.
German governments prior to Hitler had requested parity o armaments,
arguing that Germany would participate only i other countries reduced

their armaments to Germany s level, or allowed Germany to rearm
to theirs. When France re used this at the D isarmament C on erence
in 1 93 3 , Hitler pulled out o both the C on erence and the League
o Nations, claiming that these organizations were part o a French
conspiracy to keep Germany weak and incapable o sel - de ence. In
November 1 93 3 , a plebiscite gave Hitler 95 % approval or his actions,
with Germans rej oicing that Germany had at last stood up to the
victors . Hitler s withdrawal rom the talks and the League gave him
the reedom he needed to launch an assault on the rest o the Treaty
o Versailles.

Source skills
Source A in the month, the lack o an intention to
A sp eech by Hitler, broadcast disarm on France s part must be seen to be
on 1 4 O ctober 1 93 3 . the cause .

Germany cannot tolerate the deliberate In the end, Hitler e ected his purpose by
degradation o the nation by the perpetuation using tactics that oreshadowed those he
o a discrimination which consists in would employ in the S udeten a air fve years
withholding the rights which are granted as a later: he made demands at Geneva that he
matter o course to other nations The men was reasonably sure that the other powers
who are at present the leaders o Germany would not accept. He insisted that equality
have nothing in common with the traitors o o status was not enough and that, since the
November 1 91 8. Like every decent Englishman other powers were reluctant to reduce their
and every decent Frenchman, we all had our orces to Germany s level, all controls must be
duty to our Fatherland and placed our lives at li ted so that it could seek actual equality in
its service. We are not responsible or the war its own way. To this kind o intransigence the
but we eel responsible or what every honest French, supported by the B ritish government,
man must do in the time o his country s re used to yield, insisting on a waiting period
distress and or what we have done. We have in which Germany could prove its good
such infnite love or our people that we aith and give some indication o what its
desire wholeheartedly an understanding with intentions were. This gave Hitler the excuse
other nations but, as men o honour, it is he needed and, brushing aside an Italian
impossible or us to be members o institutions attempt to fnd a compromise, he announced
under conditions which are only bearable to on 1 4 O ctober 1 93 3 that Germany was ending
those devoid o a sense o honour both its participation in the con erence and
its membership o the League o Nations, an
S ince it has been made clear to us rom the institution that he had always regarded as a
declarations o certain Great Powers that they symbol o Germany s second class status and
were not prepared to consider real equality o or whose members, including the German
rights o Germany at present, we have decided ones, he privately elt contempt.
that it is impossible, in view o the indignity o
her position, or Germany to continue to orce First question, part a 3 marks
her company upon other nations. What, according to Source A, is Germany s
attitude towards international cooperation?
Source B
Gordon A. C raig, writing in an academ ic Third question 6 marks
book Germany 1 866 1 945 (1 978) . C ompare and contrast the views expressed in
S ource A and S ource B regarding Hitler and the
It was necessary to avoid appearing the
D isarmament C on erence.
villain o the piece. When the rupture came,
[Hitler s] oreign minister told Nadolny later
C H APT E R 2 . 4 : G E R M AN E X PAN S I O N , 19 3 3 19 3 8

E xaminer s hint: Highlight the comparisons and in Source A, where the language deliberate
contrasts in the sources as shown below. Then write degradation , indignity , devoid o a sense o
two ull paragraphs showing clear linkage between the honour shows Hitler s eelings or Germany s
sources and giving brie quotes to support your points. treatment.
S imilarities C ontrasts
In Source A, Hitler talks about degradation and Source A blames certain great powers or the ailure
perpetuation o a discrimination and Source B o the Disarmament Con erence, but Source B says
re ers to Germany seeing itsel as a second class that Germany was doing this only so that it would not
member o the League o Nations. appear to be the villain o the piece .
Source A talks about equality o rights or Source A claims that Germany is the victim o other
Germany. Source B also says that Germany was countries actions, whereas Source B talks o the
looking or equality . intransigence o Germany and claims that Hitler
was looking or an excuse to leave the League o
Source A blames certain great powers or not
allowing Germany to be on an equal ooting and
Source B specifcally names France as a country that In Source A, Hitler says he wants an understanding
re used to yield . with other nations , whereas Source B implies that
he did not want an understanding but was putting
Source B talks o the contempt that Hitler had
orward demands that the other powers would not
or the League o Nations and this tone is present
accept .

Undermining collective security: The Non-Aggression Pact

with Poland
Germany s withdrawal rom the League was a setback or the concept
o collective security. Poland, on Germany s eastern border, was
particularly vulnerable and, alarmed at the West s ailure to stop
Germany rearming, entered into a 1 0-year Non- Aggression Pact with
the German government in January, 1 93 4.
The Non- Aggression Pact took the world by surprise. The clauses o the
Versailles Treaty that had given German land to recreate Poland were
particularly resented in Germany; at Locarno, S tresemann had been
unwilling to guarantee the eastern borders o Germany even though he
had accepted the western border with France as part o the 1 92 5 Locarno
Treaty. For the moment, however, this pact suited Hitler. He was unable
to take any action against Poland at this stage and, by signing the pact,
he was securing his eastern rontier. It also weakened France s security
system in Eastern Europe. France had signed an alliance with Poland in
1 92 1 and had hoped that this would keep pressure on Germany s eastern
borders. Germany had now broken out o the diplomatic encirclement
that the French had attempted to impose on it. The pact also ended any
chance o rapprochement between C zechoslovakia and Poland, thus
urther undermining the collective security system. Moreover, as this was
an unpopular move in Germany, the Non-Aggression Pact looked to the
Class discussion
international community like an act o statesmanship; it could be used to What do Hitler s actions in
convince Britain and others that Germany was a peace ul nation. the years 1933 34 over
disarmament and Poland reveal
O course, Hitler had no intention o keeping to this agreement. Hitler
about his tactics for achieving
pre erred bilateral agreements to collective security agreements, as
his foreign policy objectives in
these could more easily be broken. He declared privately that All our
agreements with Poland have a temporary signifcance .
these years?

Changing diplomatic alignments: Mussolini and Austria
In June 1 93 4, Hitler and Mussolini met. However, the meeting
was not a success; Mussolini was unimpressed by Hitler and
would not agree to Hitler s positio n on Austria. Anschluss,
the unifcation o Germany and Austria, had always been an
important p art o Hitler s oreign po licy aims, and Hitler tried
to persuade Mussolini that Austria should become a satellite
o Germany. Mussolini rej ected this, however, as he wanted to
keep Austria as a bu er state between Germany and Italy. He
was also aware that S outh Tyrol, which had been gained by
Italy as part o the Versailles S ettlement, had a substantial
German minority.
Meanwhile, in Austria, Hitler was supporting the Austrian
Nazi Party led by Al red Eduard Frauen eld. The Austrian Nazis
organized a campaign o intimidation and terrorism, which
culminated in the assassination o the Austrian C hancellor
E nglebert D oll uss. This was intended to be the frst step o a coup
d tat that would orce the union with Germany.
The attempted coup caused international concern. Mussolini
immediately mobilized 1 00, 000 troops and moved them to the
Hitler and Mussolini meet in Venice in 1934 B renner pass, Italy s border with Germany, in a show o strength
in July, 1 93 4. Hitler was orced to back down and to disown the actions
Coup d tat o the Austrian Nazis. The right- wing politician Kurt von Schuschnigg
This is a sudden and violent took over and stabilized the Austrian regime.
take over of government, At this point, there ore, Hitler was orced to play a waiting game
usually by a small group of regarding unifcation with Austria. He did not want to alienate Mussolini,
people. A putsch is another whose support he would need against the Western democracies, and he
word for a coup (for example, reassured Mussolini that Austria would not be annexed.
Hitler s attempted Munich
putsch in 1923)
The growing strength of Germany: The Saar plebiscite,
January 1935
In accordance with the Treaty o Versailles, the Saar, a small coal- rich
territory, held a plebiscite in 1 93 5 . This area o Germany had been
under French control since 1 91 9 and was now given the opportunity
to return to Germany. The result o the plebiscite was an overwhelming
agreement (9 0.9 % o the vote) that the S aar should return to Germany.
This was a triumph or Hitler. The voting was supervised by the League
and so done airly, and the result was not surprising given that the entire
population o the territory was German. It was nevertheless a great
opportunity or Nazi propaganda to rein orce the growing power and
strength o Germany and the popularity o the Nazi regime. Historian
Gordon C raig writes:
This success, with which the other Powers made no attempt to interfere,
marked the beginning of a new phase in his policy. He had survived the
period of extreme vulnerability unscathed, and, thanks to the distractions and
differences of the other Powers, his own tactical skill, and a good deal of luck,
had been able in the course of two years to free himself from the restraints of
the European security system. C raig, 1 978

C H APT E R 2 . 4 : G E R M AN E X PAN S I O N , 19 3 3 19 3 8

Source skills
A p oster from 1 93 4, in the lead up to
the Saar p lebiscite. The words at the
foot read To Germany .

Go to
Watch the Path News clip showing Hitler s arrival in the Saar. How
does Hitler use this event to show his growing power?

Thinking and self-management skills

Look back at Craig s assessment o Hitler s situation by the end o
1935. He identifes several reasons or Hitler s success:
Hitler s tactical skill
the distractions and di erences o the other powers.
Find examples rom the period 1933 35 to support each o these
Which o these actors do you consider to be the most signifcant
in explaining Hitler s success? (You may want to review your
answer to the question on page 159, identi ying the di erent
tactics that Hitler used.)
First question, part b 2 marks
What is the message o this poster?

Challenging the Treaty o Versailles: Rearmament Joachim von Ribbentrop

As early as February 1 93 3 , Hitler told his generals that rearmament was Ribbentrop started o as
the most pressing priority: the next fve years must be devoted to the de ence Hitler s adviser on oreign
capacity o the Germany people . In act, Germany had always ignored the policy. In 1935 he negotiated
rearmament clauses o the Treaty o Versailles. With the cooperation o the Anglo German Naval
the Soviet Union under the Rapallo Treaty (see page 1 2 1 ) , Germany had Agreement, and in August 1936
continued to build aircra t and to train and expand its army. In this sense, he was appointed ambassador
Hitler was continuing what had already been started by previous German to Britain. He hoped to arrange
governments. However, he now increased the pace o rearmament an alliance with Britain but
dramatically. ultimately ailed in this goal; he
B y 1 93 5 , the army had increased rom 7 to 2 1 divisions. C onscription was not helped by his arrogant
was introduced in the same year; the army increased to 3 6 divisions and behaviour. A ter this, he became
over hal a million men. In March 1 93 5 , Hermann G ring, one o Hitler s negative towards Britain, seeing
ministers, revealed the existence o the Lu twa e, which by this time it as weak. In 1938 he became
had around 2 , 5 00 planes. Hitler justifed this level o rearmament on the oreign minister, a post he kept
grounds that B ritain and France had ailed to disarm and that Germany until 1945.
needed to be able to protect itsel against the growing Soviet Army.

Challenging the Treaty of Versailles: The remilitarization of
the Rhineland
Early in 1 936, Hitler turned his attention to the
Rhineland. This area had been demilitarized
East under the terms o the Treaty o Versailles. In
order to provide security or France, no military
installations or garrisons were permitted on the
le t bank or within 50 kilometres o the right
Poland bank o the River Rhine.
For Hitler, the remilitarization o the
Rhineland would be an important step in his
France C ze c plans or strengthening Germany; he would
h os l
a va k be able to build ortifcations there to prevent
an attack rom France.
Austria Austria
The timing o Hitler s actions in 1 93 6 was
Sudetenland led both by domestic and international
Danzig Free City Italy considerations. In Germany, rising prices and
Disputed territories around Germany, 1935 38 ood shortages were causing unrest among
the population and Hitler needed to distract
attention rom economic problems. Internationally, the Abyssinian crisis
provided an ideal opportunity to take action. Mussolini s break with the
B ritish and French over this crisis meant that he was now seeking closer
ties with Hitler, and so he agreed not to oppose Hitler s takeover o the
Rhineland. Hitler also knew that he could take advantage o the act that
B ritain and France were distracted by both this crisis and the allout rom
the Hoare Laval Pact (see page 2 04) .
Hitler s excuse or moving troops back into the Rhineland was the
Franco Soviet Mutual Assistance Treaty ( see page 2 1 4) , which was
ratifed on 4 March 1 93 6. He argued that this violated the spirit o the
Locarno Pact and threatened Germany with encirclement.

Source skills
A sp eech by Hitler, March 7 1 93 6. B ut should this happen then this new
B olshevik state would be a section o the
To this [the Locarno] Pact Germany made
B olshevik International, which means that a
a contribution which represented a great
decision as to aggression or non- aggression
sacrifce because while France ortifed
would not be taken in two di erent states
her rontier with steel and concrete and
, but orders would be issued rom one
armaments, and garrisoned it heavily, a
headquarters, not in Paris but in Moscow.
condition o complete de encelessness was
imposed upon us on our Western Frontier. This gigantic mobilisation o the East against
C entral E urope is opposed not only to the
France had not concluded this Treaty with a
letter but to the spirit o the Locarno Pact.
E uropean power o no signifcance S oviet
Russia is the exponent o a revolutionary C ited in Norman H. B aynes. 1 969.
political and philosophical system Its
political creed is world revolution. First question, part a 3 marks
It cannot be oreseen whether this philosophy According to Hitler, how has France gone against
will not be victorious in France as well. the spirit o the Locarno Pact?

C H APT E R 2 . 4 : G E R M AN E X PAN S I O N , 19 3 3 19 3 8

B oth Hitler s generals and the German Foreign O ce were hesitant

about marching into the Rhineland, viewing it as a dangerous action
likely to provoke a response rom B ritain and France. However, Hitler
decided to take a gamble, hoping that the diplomatic disarray caused by
the Abyssinian crisis would prevent B ritain and France rom taking any
e ective action. However, he later said,
the 48 hours after the march into the Rhineland were the most nerve-wracking
of my life. If the French had marched into the Rhineland, we would have had
to withdraw with our tails between our legs.
German troo ps moved into the Rhineland on 7 March 1 93 6. In act,
this was not a surprise to the B ritish and the French, who had received
intelligence warnings that this was about to hap pen. However, no
action was taken by either the B ritish or the French to stop the
remilitarization, despite the act that the Germans invaded with a
relatively weak military orce.
The success ul invasion was acco mpanied by a peace o er, which
was again intended to make Hitler look as though he was a man o
peace and to divert the attentio n o B ritain and France away rom his
challenge to the post- war settlement. The o er included demilitarizing
the Rhineland, providing B ritain and France created similar zones
on their sides o the rontier as well. He also suggested that he was
interested in negotiating new security pacts with his neighbours and
returning to the League o Nations.

Source skills

E xaminer s hint: How

many marks would you give
the following answer?
The overall message here
is that both the German
troops and the occupants
o the Rhineland were
happy about the German
action. This can be seen
by the expressions on the
aces o both the soldiers
and the citizens who
are also giving fowers
to the troops. The Nazi
fags that are fying rom
every building would also
First question, part b 2 marks indicate support or the
What is the message o this photograph? remilitarization.
Thinking and communication skills
Read the views o historians Kershaw and Craig on the Source B
impact o the remilitarization o the Rhineland. Identi y and Gordon A. Craig. Germany 1 866 1 945 (1 978) ,
make notes on: p age 691 .
why this success was important to Hitler s position in
With the [invasion o the Rhineland] Hitler
had e ectively destroyed the post-First World
why it changed the international situation. War security system. The German remilitarisation
Source A o the Rhineland was a victory not merely in
the sense that it enhanced German prestige. Its
Ian Kershaw, Hitler (1 991 ) , p age 1 2 4. psychological e ect was to reveal the exclusively
The remilitarisation o the Rhineland was important in de ensive nature o French strategical thinking,
the context o rearmament; it matched the revisionist and this had devastating consequences among
expectations o the traditional conservative-nationalist France s allies. Be ore the year was out, the
elites; and it was hugely popular among the masses King o the Belgians was seeking release rom
o the population even in circles otherwise distinctly the obligations incurred by the treaties o 1920
cool about the Nazi regime. As the re-establishment o and 1925, and his government had abandoned
German sovereignty over territory which no one disputed the intention o extending the Maginot Line into
was Germany, it would have been on the agenda o any Belgium and had set a course back towards strict
nationalist German government. And given the well- neutrality. There were tremors in the Little Entente
known divisions between Britain and France in their as well, where politicians with an eye to the main
stance towards Germany, it was an issue which more chance began to weigh the advantages o getting
than most stood a likely chance o success. But precisely on to Hitler s bandwagon. All in all, the F hrer had
the manner in which Hitler achieved his notable triumph good reason to exult, as he viewed the disarray o
was guaranteed to give a massive boost to his leadership French ortunes, The world belongs to the man
position. He had been proved right again, in the teeth o with guts! God helps him .
Foreign O ce hesitancy and military anxiety. And his
popularity among the masses had never been higher.

Communication Increasing the infuence o Nazism: The Spanish Civil War

Spain became the battlefeld or a European-wide struggle between the orces
o communism and socialism on the one hand and the orces o Fascism on the
Go to http://www.britishpathe. other. Henig, 1 985
com/video/scraps-o -paper.
Mussolini and Hitler were pushed closer together when they both
Watch the Path News clip intervened in the S panish C ivil War on the side o Franco.
showing Hitler s invasion
o the Rhineland. What As you will have read in the previous chapter, the S panish C ivil War
impression does the ootage began in 1 93 6 with a nationalist revolt led by the army against the
and the commentary give about republican Spanish government.
Germany at this time? B oth sides appealed to the international community or help in this
confict. General Franco led the Nationalists and he asked or help rom
Germany and Italy, while the Republican government hoped to get
support rom B ritain, France and the Soviet Union.
Review the historian s accounts
Germany did not send ground troops but played a key role in transporting
in Source A and Source B above.
Franco s troops rom Morocco to Spain at the start o the confict, and
Discuss the use o in
German bombers o the C ondor Legion caused havoc by attacking civilian
the accounts given by each
centres, most notoriously Guernica in April 1 93 7. German submarines
historian. To what extent are
also attacked government ships in the Mediterranean. Nevertheless, in
their views infuenced by
contrast to Mussolini ( see page 1 41 ) , Hitler placed limits on the extent o
and hindsight?
German involvement.

C H APT E R 2 . 4 : G E R M AN E X PAN S I O N , 19 3 3 19 3 8

Hitler had several reasons or intervening in this civil war:

He wanted a riendly government in S pain that would supply
Spanish mineral resources and also provide military bases or
German submarines.
He would be able to test out his air orce and see the e ects o air
attacks on civilian populations.
Sel -management
Refer back to Chapter 2.3.
He was able to pose as the de ender o E uropean civilization against
Compare and contrast the
the C ommunist threat.
importance of involvement in
A pro-Fascist government in Spain would urther undermine the Spanish Civil War for the
French security. foreign policies of Mussolini
and Hitler.
What were the results o this confict or Hitler s position
in Europe?
The war dragged on or three years, polarizing opinion in Europe.
It rein orced suspicions between B ritain and France on the one hand
and the Soviet Union on the other, thereby preventing a strong anti-
Fascist alliance.
It distracted the West, and B ritain s ailure to take any strong action
( see page 2 1 7 ) led Hitler to believe that he would not ace urther
opposition to expansion in Eastern Europe.

Changing diplomatic alignments: The Rome Berlin Axis

and the Anti-Comintern Pact
The most important result o the S panish C ivil War on diplomatic
alignments was the improved relations between Hitler and Mussolini.
Hitler recognized King Victor Emmanuel III o Italy as the E mperor
o Abyssinia and worked with Italy to prevent a B ritish initiative to
update the Locarno Treaties. O n the Italian side, opposition to German
infuence in Austria was now removed. In July 1 93 6, with Mussolini s
approval, Hitler signed an agreement with C hancellor S chuschnigg o
Austria, whereby S chuschnigg promised to pursue a policy based on the
principle that Austria acknowledges herself to be a German state in return or
a German commitment to non- intervention.
The new atmosphere o cooperation between Germany and Italy
culminated in the signing o the Rome B erlin Axis between Hitler and
Mussolini in O ctober 1 93 6. It consisted o a series o secret protocols
setting out their mutual interests ( see page 1 43 ) . This was ollowed up
in November o the same year by an agreement with Japan; the Anti-
C omintern Pact was directed against the C ommunist International and Class discussion
stated that, in the case o an attack by the S oviet Union, the signatories
would consult on measures to sa eguard their common interests . The To what extent had Hitler
militant nature o this agreement indicated the beginning o the openly succeeded in removing the
aggressive phase o Hitler s oreign policy. most important restrictions of
the Treaty of Versailles by the
Hitler was delighted, as these agreements demonstrated that Germany
end of 1936?
was no longer isolated but an important player on the world stage.

Source skills The impact o the economy on Hitler s oreign policy:
Ruth Henig. The Origins
The Four Year Plan
of the Second World War, B y 1 9 36, rearmament was not progressing ast enough or Hitler. Indeed,
page 30 (1985 ). the consumer economy was starting to struggle: there were shortages o
butter and meat, as well as shortages o vital imports o raw materials
In the process [o
and o oreign exchange. The economics minister, D r. Hj almar S chacht,
the Four Year Plan] ,
avoured spending less on armaments in order to enable more exports to
Germany was to make
be produced, thus encouraging oreign trade.
every e ort to become
However, Hitler believed that Germany s economic problems could only be
more sel - supporting by
solved by the acquisition o more land and living space. He decided to go all
developing a wide range
out or autarky, bringing the economy more closely under party control, in
o synthetic materials,
order to prepare or war. This was to be done via a Four Year Plan, which
by stockpiling essential
Hitler introduced in September 1 936 under the leadership o G ring.
raw materials, and by
concluding bilateral B elieving that this would make the pace o rearmament too ast and that
trade agreements with it would cause an economic crisis, S chacht resigned. However, there is
states in eastern and no doubt that Hitler was now in a strong position. As the historian Ian
south-eastern Europe Kershaw writes:
whereby ood and By the end o the year [1 936], with the German-Italian axis secured the
raw materials were creation o the anti-Comintern pact with Japan, the Spanish Civil War all
supplied to Germany providing renewed evidence o the passivity and uncertainty o the western
in exchange or democracies, and the German economy committed ull tilt to preparation or war,
manu actures and the contours o growing international tension and an escalating arms race in the
armaments. Romania latter 1 930s were all set. And out o the various interwoven crises o 1 936, Hitler s
was a particular target own power position had emerged buttressed and rein orced. Kershaw, 1 991
or German advances
because she could The impact o Nazism on Germany s oreign policy:
supply vitally needed
supplies o oil. The Hossbach Memorandum
The con erence marks the point at which the expansion o the Third Reich
First question, part a ceased to be latent and became explicit. Wiliamson, 1 995
3 marks On 5 November, Hitler called a special meeting that was attended by his
According to Henig, in top generals and his war ministers: Hermann G ring ( air) , Werner von
what ways did Hitler plan Fritsch ( army) , Erich Raeder ( navy) , Werner von B lomberg ( de ence) and
to make Germany prepared Foreign Minister Konstantin von Neurath. Hitler told the meeting that
or war? what he was to say was to be regarded as his last will and testament .
We know about this meeting because the main points were compiled
and written down fve days later by Hitler s military assistant, C olonel
Hossbach, rom notes that he made at the time. The document was fled
Communication, thinking without having been seen by Hitler.
and social skills At the con erence, Hitler gave an overview o Germany s international
Read the ull text o the situation and proposed several actions that now needed to be taken. The
Hossbach Memorandum at: ollowing extracts are taken rom Hossbach s memorandum: The aim o German oreign policy was to make secure and to preserve the
hossbach.asp. racial community and to enlarge it. It was there ore a question o space. The
question or Germany was: where could she achieve the greatest gain at the
Make bullet point notes on the
lowest cost? German policy had to reckon with two hate inspired antagonists,
key points made.
Britain and France, to whom a German colossus in the centre o Europe was
In pairs or small groups, discuss a thorn in the fesh Germany s problem could only be solved by the use
the signifcance o this meeting. o orce. I the resort to orce with its attendant risks is accepted there then

C H APT E R 2 . 4 : G E R M AN E X PAN S I O N , 19 3 3 19 3 8

remains still to be answered the questions When ? and How ? In this

matter there were three contingencies to be dealt with.
Source skills
C ase 1 : Period 1 943 5 Second question
A ter that date only a change or the worse or our point o view could be 4 marks
expected Our relative strength would decrease in relation to the rearmament With re erence to its origin,
which would then have been carried out by the rest o the world. I the purpose and content,
F hrer was still living it was his unalterable determination to solve Germany s assess the values and
problem o space by 1 943 5 at the latest limitations o the Hossbach
Memorandum as evidence
C ase 2
o Hitler s oreign policy
I internal stri e in France should develop into such a domestic crisis as to plans a ter 1 93 7.
absorb the French army completely and render it incapable o use or war
against Germany, then the time or acting against the Czechs would have come.
C ase 3
I France should be so embroiled in war with another state that she could not
proceed against Germany. For the improvement o our political-military
position our frst objective, in the event o our being embroiled in war, must be
to overthrow Czechoslovakia and Austria simultaneously in order to remove
the threat to our plan in any possible operation against the West.
I Germany made use o this war to settle the Czech and Austrian question, it Class discussion
was to be assumed that Britain hersel at war with Italy would decide not
to act against Germany. Refer back to Hitler s foreign
policy ideas in Mein Kampf
While none o the military leaders obj ected to the planned destruction (see pages 117 118) . What
o C zechoslovakia, B lomberg and Fritsch were unhappy about a policy continuities are there in his
that could lead to war with B ritain and France be ore Germany was aims as set out in 1923 in Mein
su fciently prepared. However, all those who were hesitant about Kampf and those as they appear
Hitler s aims ( B l mberg, Fritsch and Neurath) were ruthlessly removed in the Hossbach Memorandum?
rom power in February 1 93 8 when Hitler appointed himsel S upreme What change in attitude do you
C ommander o the German army. These changes were accompanied by see concerning Britain?
the retirement o 1 6 high- ranking generals and the trans er o 44 others,
thus removing anyone who might be less than committed to Hitler s In pairs, review Italy s position
goals. As Kershaw writes, Following the Reichstag Fire and the Rohm crisis on a potential naval war with
[Night o the Long Knives], the Bl mberg-Fritsch a air was the third great Britain. What would be the
milestone on the way to F hrer absolutist power ( quoted in D arby, 2 007) . Italian view of the cases
discussed in this meeting?
How signifcant is the Hossbach Memorandum as evidence o
Hitler s oreign policy objectives?
A copy o Hossbach s minutes o this meeting were used at the Nuremberg
The Nuremberg Trials
Trials as evidence o Hitler s planning or war. However, AJP Taylor points
A series of military tribunals,
out that the memorandum is only a copy and indeed only a ragment o
held by the Allied forces after
a copy o the original, which has disappeared. Taylor also argues that the
World War II. Key members
purpose o the meeting was not actually to discuss oreign policy aims but to
of the political, military, and
convince conservative military and fnancial experts o the need to continue
economic leadership of Nazi
with the rearmament programme, and to isolate Schacht, who opposed it.
Germany were put on trial
Taylor states that Hitler s exposition was in large part day-dreaming and unrelated
charged with crimes against
to what ollowed in real li e (Taylor, 1 969) .
peace and crimes against
However, other historians would still argue that, while it cannot be used humanity.
as a road- map or war, the Hossbach Memorandum did clearly set out
Hitler s central goal: to make secure and to preserve the racial community and
enlarge it . It also made clear Hitler s war- like and expansionist intentions
and Hitler s sense o urgency; this was all taken seriously by those present.
Think about what a historical act actually is. Write a brie de nition o what a act
in history is. Share your de nition with a partner. How is this similar to or diferent
rom a act in the natural sciences. Discuss as a class what could be considered
the historical acts in this chapter. Does your discussion suggest anything about
the methods o , and challenges aced by, historians?

Full document question: Hitler s remilitarization of the Rhineland

Source A Source B
A B ritish rep ort by the heads o the three A cartoon p ublished in Punch magazine on
armed services on their ability to fght a war 1 8 March 1 93 6.
against Germany in 193 6.
We wo uld at o nce emphasise that any
questio n o war with Germany while we
were as at prese nt heavily committed to the
po ssib ility o hostilities in the Medite rranean
wo uld b e thoro ughly dangero us. As
re gards naval op eratio n against Germany,
our minimum require me nts could only
be carrie d o ut b y weakening naval o rces
in the Mediterranean to an extent which
wo uld j eop ardise o ur p o sitio n there vis- -
vis Italy As regards the Army and the
Air F orce, the purely de ensive provisio ns
already made in the Me diterranean have
drawn u po n the reso urces o these two
S ervices to such an e xtent that until those
re in o rcements have returne d to this
cou ntry we sho uld b e quite incapable o
dispatching a Fie ld F orce o r p ro viding any
proper de ence in the air. To b ring ho me
the se orces with their equip ment would
take in the case o the army two months
and even longer in the case o the Air Fo rce .
At the moment our coast de ence artillery
requires modernisation to a large extent,
we have no anti- submarine de ences or a
Source C
number o our most important ports, and Ruth Henig, a B ritish academic historian, in
the number o our anti- aircra t guns and an academic book, The Origins of the Second
searchlights is quite inadequate to deal with World War (1 985 ) .
the air threat rom Germany.
On 7 March 1 936, token German orces
marched into the Rhineland and Hitler
announced that the German government
was remilitarizing it because o the threat to
Germany posed by the Franco-Russian alliance
which had just been ratifed by the French
Senate The remilitarization was a urther
challenge to the Versailles settlement and to the

C h apt e r 2 . 4 : G e r m an e x pan s i o n , 19 3 3 19 3 8

B ritish government s wish to secure peace ul In order, however, to avoid any misinterpretation
and orderly revision. For the British government o its intentions and to establish beyond doubt
had already gone out o its way to indicate to the purely de ensive character o these measures,
Hitler that ministers were willing to agree to as well as to express its unalterable longing or
German remilitarization o the Rhineland as part a real pacifcation o Europe between states in
o a more general package o measures which equal rights and equally respected, the German
might include an air-pact, German return to the government declares itsel ready to conclude
League o Nations, some peace ul revision o new agreements or the creation o a system o
Germany s eastern rontiers and the return o peace ul security or Europe A ter three years,
ormer German colonies. Now Hitler had shown I believe that today the struggle or German
once again, in his rearmament policies that he equality o rights can be deemed concluded
pre erred to achieve his objectives by unilateral We have no territorial claims to make in
military action rather than by participating Europe. Above all, we are aware that all the
in multilateral diplomatic discussions. In tensions resulting either rom erroneous
retrospect, many politicians and commentators territorial provisions or rom the disproportion
claimed that this was the point at which Hitler between the size o its population and
should have been challenged, and that a ter Lebensraum can never be solved by wars.
March 1 936 he could not be stopped rom
plunging Europe into war. First question, part a 3 marks
According to S ource A, why would it be di fcult
Source D or B ritain to resist German aggression in 1 93 6?
A sp eech by Hitler to the Reichstag
following the remilitarization of the First question, part b 2 marks
Rhineland, S aturday 7 March 1 93 6. What is the message o S ource B ?
The German government has continuously Second question 4 marks
emphasised during the negotiations o the last C ompare and contrast the views expressed in
years its readiness to observe and ulfl all the Source C and Source D regarding Hitler s motives
obligations arising rom the Rhine Pact so long or his actions in 1 93 6.
as the other contracting parties were ready on
their side to maintain the pact. This obvious Third question 6 marks
and essential condition can no longer be With re erence to its origin, purpose and content,
regarded as being ulflled by France. France assess the value and limitations o S ource C
has replied to Germany s repeated riendly or a historian studying the reasons or the
o ers and assurances o peace by in ringing remilitarization o the Rhineland.
the Rhine Pact through a military alliance
with the S oviet Union directed exclusively Fourth question 9 marks
against Germany. In this manner, however, Using these sources and your own knowledge,
the Locarno Rhine Pact has lost its inner examine the reasons or Hitler s remilitarization o
meaning and ceased to exist the Rhineland in 1 93 6.

B aynes, N. 1 969. The Speeches of Adolf Hitler: April 1 922 August 1 939.
H. Fertig. New York, USA
Craig, G. 1 978. Germany 1 866 1 945. Ox ord University Press. New York, USA
D arby, G. 2 007. Hitler, Appeasement and the Road to War. Hodder, UK
Henig, R. 1 985 . The Origins of the Second World War. Routledge. London, UK
Kershaw, I. 1 991 . Hitler. Longman. London, UK.
Steiner, Z. 2 01 1 . The Triumph of the Dark: European International History
1 933 1 999. Ox ord University Press. New York, USA
Wiliamson, D G. 1 995 . The Third Reich. Longman. London, UK
2.5 German expansion, 1938 1940


Examine the ways in which Hitler went further than challenging the post-war
settlement after 1937.
To what extent was Hitler successful in carrying out his foreign policy aims?
German troops march into Poland Discuss the consequences of Hitler s actions for the international situation.
following the start of hostilities
on 1 September 1939

declared with Austria after

1938 March
German troops march into Austria
September The Sudeten crisis
Germany occupies the rest of
Czechoslovakia 1939 March
Lithuania gives up the port of Memel to
Germany 31 March Anglo French guarantee of Poland

Conscription introduced in Britain 27 April

May The Pact of Steel

Anglo-French mission to Moscow 12 August

24 August Nazi-Soviet Pact

Anglo-Polish Treaty 25 August

1 September Germany invades Poland

Britain and France declare war on Germany 3 September

Following the shake- up o his military command in 1 93 7 a ter the

Hossbach C on erence, Hitler was in a position to start taking more risks
in his oreign policy. The frst o these was the takeover o Austria; the
next was the takeover o Sudetenland. These actions completed the
revision o the post- war settlement and also put Hitler in a position to
pursue his goal o in the East.

C H APT E R 2 . 5 : G E R M AN E XPAN S I O N , 1 9 3 8 19 4 0

B etween 1 93 8 and 1 93 9, Hitler was able to achieve the aims that he Class discussion
had set out at the Hossbach C on erence in 1 93 7: the annexation o
Austria and the dismemberment o C zechoslovakia. However, this was Discuss the events that were
not achieved in the way that Hitler had anticipated; indeed, historian happening in Asia at this time.
Alan B ullock sees Anschluss as a striking example o Hitler s ability What expansionist moves had
to combine consistency in aim, calculation and patience in preparation with Japan made by early 1938? Do
opportunism, impulse and improvisation in execution ( B ullock, 1 967: 2 04) . you think events in Asia had any
infuence on the international
D espite his ailure to take Austria in 1 93 4, Hitler had already made response to German expansion?
much progress in establishing Nazi infuence in the country. In July
1 93 6, an Austro German agreement had been signed, which agreed the
Germany rea rmed its recognition o Austria s independence.
B oth powers agreed not to inter ere in each other s internal a airs.
Austria would conduct a oreign policy consistent with it being a
German state .
In addition, secret clauses gave prominent Austrian Nazis, such as Arthur
Seyss- Inquart, a role in the government.
However, in 1 93 8 the opportunity to take over Austria directly arose due
to the actions o Austrian C hancellor Kurt S chuschnigg. Schuschnigg
was alarmed by the activities o the Austrian Nazis and he requested
an interview with Hitler. However, when Schuschnigg arrived at the
meeting in B erchtesgaden on 1 2 February 1 93 8, Hitler launched into an
attack on Austria:
Hitler: The whole history o Austria is just one interrupted act o high
treason. That was so in the past, and is no better today. The historical
paradox must now reach its long-overdue end. And I can tell you here and
now, Herr Schuschnigg, that I am absolutely determined to make an end
o all this. The German Reich is one o the Great Powers, and nobody will
raise his voice i it settles its border problems Who is not with me will
be crushed I have chosen the most di fcult road that any German ever
Schuschnigg: Herr Reichkanzler, I am quite willing to believe it We will do
everything to remove obstacles to a better understanding, as ar as possible Schuschnigg, Chancellor of Austria

Hitler: That is what you say, Herr Schuschnigg. But I am telling you that
I am going to solve the so-called Austrian problem one way or the other
I have only to give the order and your ridiculous de ence mechanism will be
blown to bits
Chancellor Schuschnigg s recollection o the conversations at Berchtesgaden,
12 February 1938, written shortly a terwards rom memory

Source skills
Second question 4 marks
With re erence to its origin, purpose and content, assess the value and
limitations o S chuschnigg s account o his meeting with Hitler or
historians studying the Austrian crisis o 1 93 8.

Examiner s hint:
Here are some points that you could consider in your answer:
A value o the origin is that Schuschnigg was present at the meeting
and so would have frst-hand knowledge o what was said.
Schuschnigg wrote the conversation down soon a ter the meeting
so it would have been resh in his mind.
The purpose is o value as S chuschnigg made a record o the
meeting which he saw as important.
Schuschnigg s account was written a terwards rom memory, so
he is unlikely to have been able to remember the conversation so
precisely as it is here.
His purpose would be to gain sympathy or his treatment, so it is
possible that he might want to exaggerate Hitler s attack on Austria.
C ertainly, the language used by Hitler here is very aggressive
in contrast to Schuschnigg s very reasonable tone which could
support the idea that he is exaggerating.

A ter being submitted to two hours o abuse, S chuschnigg was orced to

agree to a list o demands that included releasing all imprisoned pro-Nazi
agitators, li ting the ban against the Nazi Party and appointing Seyss-
Inquart as interior minister. Pro- Nazis were also to be made the ministers
o war and o fnance, and the economic systems o the two countries
were to be assimilated. These demands would e ectively end Austrian
independence; S chuschnigg was told that i he did not agree, Hitler
would march into Austria.
S chuschnigg attempted a desperate last action: he announced a plebiscite
or 1 3 March 1 93 8, in which Austrians were to vote on whether or
Communication skills not they wanted a free and German, independent and social, Christian and
united Austria . Austrians could only answer yes or no ; given the
In pairs review Chapter 2.3
wording, along with the act that Schuschnigg s own political party
and then discuss the reasons
was in charge o the plebiscite, there was a good chance that a Yes vote
for the change in Mussolini s
could be secured. This would then give him a chance to break ree o his
position on Anschluss by 1938.
agreement with Hitler.
Hitler, there ore, decided to act be ore this could happen. Mussolini
gave his assurances that he would not obj ect to Anschluss and Hitler
mobilized his army. When S chuschnigg ound that no help was coming
rom Italy, B ritain or France, he resigned. Hitler marched into Austria
on 1 2 March 1 93 8.

C H APT E R 2 . 5 : G E R M AN E XPAN S I O N , 1 9 3 8 19 4 0

On 1 3 March, apparently in a spur o the

moment decision ollowing an emotional visit
to his home town o Linz, Hitler announced
the incorporation o Austria into the Reich.
This was subsequently confrmed by 99% o
the population in a plebiscite on 1 0 April.

Historian Klaus Fischer sums up the impact o

The Anschluss and the methods that brought
it about had ar-reaching consequences. Hitler
had gambled success ully again. He became
convinced that his strategy o ruthless power
politics had been vindicated and that it was
the only e ective policy against his war-
weary and vacillating opponents. Aside rom
rein orcing Hitler s belie in the e ectiveness o
international blackmail and intimidation, the
Anschluss also had ar-reaching consequences
in the feld o diplomacy. It promoted the Austrian crowds greeting Hitler after
riendship o the two Fascist tyrants Hitler and
Mussolini, and this urther polarised European powers. Another consequence
o the Anschluss was that Germany s strategic position was greatly enhanced.
With Vienna at his disposal Hitler had acquired direct access to the whole o
south-eastern Europe. From Vienna it was only a ootstep to Czechoslovakia,
Hungary and Yugoslavia. Fischer, 1 995

Thinking and communication skills

Use Fischer s analysis of to add detail to your own copy of this mind map.
Hitler s position
in Germany
The impact
international Hitler s tactics

Go to
Watch this Path News clip of Hitler entering Austria.
According to the commentary, what made it hard for anyone (inside or outside of
Austria) to oppose this move?

The Sudeten crisis
Hitler s action against Czechoslovakia was a virtuoso performance,
diminished only by the fact that his antagonists made things easier for him
than he deserved. C raig, 1 978

After the success of annexing Austria, Hitler turned his attention to

C zechoslovakia. There were several reasons for this:

Annexed by Hitler considered

Germany (1 938) S lavs to be
Terezin ( racially and socially
Prague Annexed by Poland (1 938) inferior) .
(Germany protectorate, 1 939)
resisted Austrian
SLOVAKIA rule in the old
(1 939)
Austro Hungarian
Annexed by Germany Bansk
Bratislava Munkacs Empire and had
(1 938) Bystrica
fought for Russia
Annexed by Hungary during the First
(1 938 39) World War,
rather than for
MILES Austria.
Partition of Czechoslovakia, 1938 39
C zechoslovakia was the only successful independent state created
by the Versailles S ettlement; it consisted of many different peoples
and had therefore proved that ethnically diverse people could live
One of the ethnic groups in the new C zechoslovakia was German.
These Germans had formally lived in the Austro Hungarian E mpire
and now lived in the area known as the S udetenland, which
bordered Germany ( see its location on the map above) .
C zechoslovakia was an enthusiastic supporter of the League of Nations.
C zechoslovakia was allied to France and Russia.

Thin kin g an d s ocials kills

In pairs, consider how each of the bullet points above would contribute to Hitler s
hostile attitude towards Czechoslovakia.

TheSud eten Germ an s

The S udetenland a mountainous area, rich in mineral resources
had been given to C zechoslovakia in order to give the new state a
strong frontier and to ensure its prosperity. The C zechs had then
further strengthened this frontier by building defences. In addition,
C zechoslovakia had a strong arms industry and a well- organized army.

C H APT E R 2 . 5 : G E R M AN E XPAN S I O N , 1 9 3 8 19 4 0

However, the S udeten Germans themselves, some 3 .5 million people,

had not accepted their position in C zechoslovakia. As part o the ormer
Austrian Imperial ruling nation, they resented their loss o status and
regarded themselves as victims o C zech discrimination. With the
impact o the Great D epression and high unemployment, their sense o
grievance grew.
The leader o the S udeten Germans, Konrad Heinlein, became the
mouthpiece or Sudeten discontent and or demands to the C zech
government or sel - government. He led the Sudeten German Party,
which, rom 1 93 5 , was unded by Nazi Germany. Hitler encouraged
Heinlein to make continual demands on the C zech government and
to keep up a relentless programme o agitation and subversion. On
2 4 April 1 93 8, Heinlein presented the C zech government with his
E ight D emands in the orm o the Karlsbad Programme; these demands
included autonomy and various special rights.
Initially, however, Hitler was reluctant to use orce against
C zechoslovakia. He told Heinlein that he would solve the S udeten
issue in the not too distant uture , but did not commit himsel to any
clear plan on how this was to be achieved. In addition, many o Hitler s Konrad Heinlein, leader of the
generals warned him that Germany was not ready or a war at this stage. Sudeten German Party

The May Crisis, 1938

Hitler changed his mind with regard to taking action against
C zechoslovakia as a result o the so- called May C risis. O n 2 0 May,
rumours started circulating that the Germans were making military
preparations near to the C zech border. As a result, the C zech
government ordered partial mobilization, and B ritain and France sent
warnings to Germany.
In act, the rumours were un ounded and Hitler had to tell the powers
involved that no such preparations to attack C zechoslovakia were
underway. He ound this action humiliating, as it looked as though he
had responded to B ritish and French threats. On 2 8 May, in what was
known as O peration Green, Hitler told his generals: It is my unalterable
decision to smash Czechoslovakia by military action in the near future .
Throughout the summer o 1 93 8, tensions increased in the S udetenland
as the Sudeten Germans, on instructions rom Hitler, increased their
violence against the C zech government. O n 5 September, the C zech
President E dvard B ene agreed to all demands o the Sudeten Germans
or sel - government. However, Heinlein was told by Hitler to rej ect this
o er, thus proving that Hitler was interested only in conquest and not in
j ustice or the S udeten Germans. Meanwhile, the German press whipped
up a renzy o anti- C zech eeling by showing pictures and flm ootage o
the apparent ill- treatment o Sudeten Germans.
Thinking and communication skills
S p eech made by Hitler on 1 2 S ep tember This may be a matter o indiference to the democracies
1 93 8 at the annual Nuremberg Rally. but I can only say to the representatives o the
democracies that it is not a matter o indiference to us,
I am speaking o Czechoslovakia. This is a democratic
and I say that i these tortured creatures cannot obtain
State ounded on democratic lines by orcing other
rights and assistance by themselves they can obtain
nationalities without asking them into a structure
both rom us
manu actured by Versailles. As good democrats they
began to oppress and mishandle the majority o the We can quite understand that the French and British
inhabitants de end their interests in the world. I can assure the
statesmen in Paris and London that there are also
I this were a matter oreign to us we would
German interests which we are determined to de end
regard the case as so many others, merely as an
in all circumstances You will understand that a
interesting illustration o the democratic conception
Great Power cannot suddenly submit to such a
o sel -determination, and simply take note o it.
base attack What the Germans demand is the right
But it is something most natural which compels
o sel -determination which other nations possess
us Germans to take an interest in this problem.
i the Democracies, however, should be convinced that
Among the nationalities being suppressed in this
they must in this case protect with all their means the
State there are 3,500,000 Germans. That is about
oppressors o the Germans, then this will have grave
as many persons o our race as Denmark has
inhabitants That conditions in this nation are
unbearable is generally known. 3 ,500,000 people In pairs, read Hitler s speech and consider what evidence
were robbed in the name o a certain Mr Wilson o this document provides o :
their right to sel -determination. Economically these Hitler s political views
people were deliberately ruined and a terwards
Hitler s tactics with regard to taking over the
handed over to a slow process o extermination. The
misery o the Sudeten Germans is without end. They
are being oppressed in an inhuman and intolerable the nature o Nazi propaganda.
manner and treated in an undigni ied way

Hitler s speech at the Nuremberg Rally caused more unrest in the

S udetenland, but this was brought under control by the C zech
government, which declared martial law.

Go to, or search or The German
people persecuted at Sudetenland .
Watch this German propaganda lm. According to the lm, how are the Sudeten
Germans being persecuted?

C H APT E R 2 . 5 : G E R M AN E XPAN S I O N , 1 9 3 8 19 4 0

Chamberlain s intervention
It was at this point that B ritain decided to act. The ull reasons and nature
o this involvement are discussed in more detail in the next chapter.
However, C hamberlain desperately wanted to avoid a war, and so now
few three times to meet Hitler to try to make a deal over the Sudetenland.

Berchtesgaden, 15 September 1938

At this meeting, it
was agreed that the
Sudeten German areas
o C zechoslovakia
should be trans erred to
Germany. C hamberlain
persuaded his C abinet
and the French to agree
to this deal. The Czechs
nally agreed a ter two
days o persuasion.

Chamberlain arriving at Berchtesgarden

Godesberg, 22 23 September 193 8

C hamberlain few to Godesberg
to tell Hitler the good news,
but Hitler was urious.
He wanted an excuse or a
war with C zechoslovakia, not
a peace ul handover o the
Sudetenland. He insisted that
the demands o the Hungarians
and the Poles or territory in
C zechoslovakia should also be
met, and that German troops Chamberlain leaving Godesberg
should be allowed to occupy the
Sudetenland on 2 8 September.

It now seemed as though war was inevitable. The C zechs rejected

Hitler s terms and the French said they would support Czechoslovakia.
As mentioned previously, the C zechs had good de ences and a strong
army. They hoped that with the help o their allies, France and the
Soviet Union, they could resist a German attack.
Munich, 29 September 1938
With B ritain and France
now showing that they were
prepared to fght, and with his
own generals pointing out that
Germany was not yet ready
or war, Hitler agreed to a
urther con erence. Mussolini
stepped in as a mediator
to prevent war, and a Four
Power C on erence was held in
Chamberlain, Daladier, Hitler and Munich. Here, a plan presented
Mussolini at the Munich Conference by Mussolini (though written
by Hitler! ) was agreed on.

The plan included the following points.

The German occupation o the Sudetenland would take place by 1 October and an
international commission would determine a provisional new rontier by 1 0 October.
The international commission would also supervise plebiscites in areas o dispute.
Czechs would be allowed to leave and Germans allowed to join the Sudeten territories
(neither the plebiscites nor the trans er o populations actually happened) .
Poland was to be given Teschen.
Hungary was to get South Slovakia.
Germany, along with the other powers, guaranteed the independence o the rest o

Neither the C zech President, Bene nor the Soviet leader, Stalin were
invited to the Munich C on erence. The C zechs were told that i they resisted
this agreement they would receive no help rom Britain or France, even
though France had guaranteed the Czech borders at Locarno. The Czechs
there ore had no option but to agree. B ene resigned a ew days later.
Following the con erence, C hamberlain got Hitler to sign a statement in
which he agreed to settle all matters o international interest through
consultation. Hitler, however, was determined not to be deprived o
his war against C zechoslovakia. O n 2 1 October, he gave orders or the
liquidation of the remainder of the Czech state .

Source skills
Gordon A. C raig. Germany 1 866 1 945 the country s readiness or war was as good
(1 990) . as it could be without measures o domestic
discipline that he was disinclined to take; and
Munich seemed to convince Hitler that
it seemed possible, in any case, that conquests
he could do no wrong, and his policy
might repair defciencies. Moreover, the
now betrayed an impatience that had not
acceleration o Hitler s campaign against the
characterised it earlier. In his search or new
Jews at the end o 1 93 8 contributed to the
triumphs, economic actors no longer had the
mounting pace o his external policy. One
power to restrain him, or it was clear that
C H APT E R 2 . 5 : G E R M AN E XPAN S I O N , 1 9 3 8 19 4 0

o the complaints that he made against the and the destruction o Jewry were inextricably
government o C zechoslovakia was that the connected in his thoughts.
Jews in C zechoslovakia were still poisoning
the nation against Germany and would First question, part a 3 marks
have to be dealt with. As he turned to new According to C raig, what was the impact o the
obj ectives, it is clear that the conquest o space Munich C on erence on Hitler?

Beyond the Treaty of Versailles: The liquidation of

Thinking and social skills
Czechoslovakia 1 According to Craig in the
source above, what factor

Communication skills linked Hitler s domestic and

foreign policies?
2 With a partner, discuss what
conclusions Hitler might
now draw as to the attitude
of the West regarding any
future action he might take.

German troops enter Prague in March 1939

What does this photo suggest about the attitude of the citizens of Prague towards
the takeover of the rest of Czechoslovakia?

As a result o the Munich C on erence, C zechoslovakia lost 70% o

its heavy industry, a third o its population and both the natural
mountainous de ences and the man- made ortifcations o the
Sudetenland. Slovakia and Ruthenia were given sel - government or
internal a airs, though were still ultimately controlled rom Prague.
C learly, Hitler saw the Munich Agreement as a stepping stone to the
liquidation of the Czech state ( S tackelberg, 1 999: 1 73 ) . From early
1 93 9, Hitler encouraged the S lovaks to cause disruption and to ask or
complete independence. He was willingly helped in this by Father Joze
Tiso, who was head o the ascist Slovak People s Party.
As with Austria, Hitler was given the excuse to directly get involved
when the new C zech President, Emil Hach , moved troops into
Slovakia to crush this agitation. Prompted by Hitler, Tiso proclaimed ull
independence or Slovakia and asked or German protection.

In the hope of saving C zechoslovakia, Hach now asked to see Hitler.
This, of course, was a mistake; Hach was forced to sign over B ohemia
and Moravia to Hitler.
O n 1 5 March 1 93 9, German troops occupied the rest of C zechoslovakia.
O n 1 6 March, B ohemia and Moravia were declared a protectorate of
Germany; Slovakia was to be an independent state under the protection
of Germany and Ruthenia was occupied by Hungarian troops.
This action led to a change in B ritish policy towards Germany. On
1 8 March, C hamberlain told the B ritish C abinet that no reliance could be
placed on any of the assurances given by the Nazi leaders ( see page 2 2 3) .

German expansion: Poland

It was now cle ar that Hitle r s next
MEMEL target wo uld be Po land. Poland had
been dismantled as a co untry in the
Baltic Sea LITHUANIA 1 8 th century and p artitio ned be tween
Prussia, Russia and the Au strian E mp ire.
EAST PRUSSIA Ho wever, fo llo wing Wilson s aims o f
se lf- determination at Versailles, it had
ALLENSTEIN been recreated as a nation. It was this
part of the Treaty o f Versailles that was
MARIENWERDER pro bably most rese nted by the Germans,
as We st Pru ssia had been given to Poland
to allow it access to the se a, there by
GERMANY POLAND sp litting E ast Prussia o ff from the re st
of Germany. This p ie ce of land, known
as the Polish C o rridor, also included the
Transferred to
SILESIA Poland by Treaty city o f D anzig, which be came a fre e
of Versailles city run by the League o f Nations,
EAST Voted to become allowing both Po land and Germany to
0 50 1 00 mi UPPER Polish (1 921 )
use it as a se a p ort.
SILESIA Voted to remain
0 50 1 00 km German (1 921 ) Less than a week after the occupation
The Polish Corridor after the of Prague, the Germans proposed to
First World War Poland that D anzig should be returned to Germany, and that Germany
sho uld have direct access to E ast Prussia via a Ge rman- co ntro lled
road and rail link. This was actually a mo re legitimate demand than
the German claim to the S udetenland, which had not bee n part o f
Ge rmany be fo re the First World War. However, Poland s foreign
ministe r C olonel B eck refused, see ing this as the start of an attack on
Polish territo ry.

Britain s guarantee to Poland

In March 1 9 3 9 , Hitler asked the Lithuanian go vernment to hand over
Me mel. Lithu ania was a B altic state that had be en made indep endent
fro m Russia in 1 9 1 9 ; Memel was a city and strip of land bordering
E ast Pru ssia that had a substantial German p opu latio n. Lithuania was
in no po sition to stand up to Hitler and the land was handed over
fou r days later.

C H APT E R 2 . 5 : G E R M AN E XPAN S I O N , 1 9 3 8 19 4 0

B ritain now decided to act and, on 3 0 March, a guarantee was o ered to

Poland to give help in the event o a German attack:
You have already refected
In the event o any action which clearly threatened Polish independence, and
on the role o the individual
which the Polish Government accordingly considered it vital to resist with
in history when considering
their national orces, His Majesty s Government would eel themselves bound
Italy s oreign policies under
at once to lend the Polish Government all support in their power. They have
Mussolini. In pairs consider
given the Polish Government an assurance to this e ect.
the role o Hitler in shaping and
I may add that the French Government have authorised me to make it plain that directing events. Intentionalist
they stand in the same position in this matter as do His Majesty s Government. historians view the role o
The Anglo Polish Treaty ailed to make Hitler more cautious in his individuals and personalities as
actions. Indeed, he was urious about this opposition to his plans, key orces o historical change.
commenting, I ll cook them a stew that they ll choke on . Two days a ter the To what extent do you agree
B ritish guarantee to Poland, Hitler responded by declaring the Anglo with this idea. Re er to your
German Naval Agreement invalid and ending the 1 93 4 Non- Aggression study o German expansion in
Pact with Poland. He then ordered his C hie o S ta , Keitel, to prepare the 1930s. Other historians, and
or the attack on Poland. This was known as Operation White, and particularly Marxist historians
the plan was or a limited war on Poland rather than or a wider war argue that economic orces
involving B ritain and France. are the key actor. Investigate
historians views on German
expansion in the 1930s. How
Changing international alignments: The Pact of ar can you identi y political
or cultural perspectives o the
Steel, May 1939 historians rom their accounts?
Pact o Steel
International tensions continued to rise with Mussolini s invasion
o Albania ( see p age 1 47 ) . Although this action was cau sed by
Mussolini s attemp t to show his indepe nde nce o Hitler and to
increase his own international imp o rtance, to B ritain and France
this lo o ked like a co ordinate d actio n b etween the dictato rship s.
Thus, B ritain and France immediately issued guarantee s to bo th
Greece and Romania.
The Germans supported Mussolini s action in Albania, and Mussolini
ound that he needed Hitler s support given the hostile reaction o
B ritain and France. He thus agreed to sign the Pact o Steel with
Germany, whereby each power agreed to come to the aid o the other
i it became involved in hostilities contrary to its wishes and desires .
However, Mussolini was wary o getting involved in a ull- scale confict,
and privately he made it clear to Hitler that Italy would not be ready or
war or another three or our years.
Nevertheless, Hitler was intent on an immediate war with Poland. The
day a ter the signing o the Pact o Steel, he told his generals: we are le t
with the decision: to attack Poland at the rst suitable opportunity . As Kershaw
writes, War or [Hitler] was no conventional military confict. It represented
the decisive step towards the ul lment o his idea , the accomplishment o his
mission (Kershaw, 1 991 : 1 3 4) .

Source skills
Source A C ontracting Party will afford the threatened
The Italo German Alliance, 2 2 May 1 93 9 Party its full political and diplomatic support
(the Pact of S teel) . in order to remove this threat.

The German Reich C hancello r and His ARTIC LE III.

Maj esty the King o f Italy and Albania, If it should happen, against the wishes
E mp e ro r o f E thio p ia, co nsider that the time and hopes of the C ontracting Parties, that
has co me to co nfirm thro ugh a so le mn p act one of them becomes involved in military
the clo se relatio n o f friendship and affinity complications with another power or other
which e xists b e twee n Natio nal S o cialist Powers, the other C ontracting Party will
Ge rmany and Fascist Italy. immediately step to its side as an ally and will
Firmly bound together through the support it with all its military might on land,
inner unity of their ideologies and the at sea, and in the air.
comprehensive solidarity of their interests, the Berlin 22 May 1 93 9 in the XVII year of the
German and the Italian people are determined Fascist Era.
also in future to stand side by side and to
strive with united effort for the securing Source B
of their Lebensraum [living space] and the A p hotograp h taken in B erlin, May 1 93 9,
maintenance of peace. In this way, prescribed following the signing of the Pact of S teel.
for them by history, Germany and Italy wish,
in a world of unrest and disintegration, to
carry out the assignment of making safe the
foundations of E uropean culture have
agreed upon the following terms:
The C ontracting Parties will remain in
permanent contact with each other, in order
to come to an understanding of all common
interests or the European situation as a whole.
In the event that the common interests of the
C ontracting Parties be j eopardized through First question, part a 3 marks
international happenings of any kind, they According to Source A, what common factors
will immediately enter into consultation unite Italy and Germany?
regarding the necessary measures to preserve
these interests. S hould the security or other First question, part b 2 marks
vital interests of one of the C ontracting What is the message of Source B ?
Parties be threatened from outside, the other

Thinking skills
Look at the articles o the agreement. Who do you consider would beneft the
most rom this alliance?

C H APT E R 2 . 5 : G E R M AN E XPAN S I O N , 1 9 3 8 19 4 0

The Nazi Soviet Pact A cartoon by Herblock, 1 93 9, called Little

In the summer o 1 93 9, both the Western Goldilocks Riding Hood .
democracies and Hitler approached the S oviet
Union or an alliance. D espite Hitler s loathing o
communist Russia and his plans or in the
East, an alliance with the Soviet Union at this stage
was highly desirable. It would prevent the S oviets
orming an alliance with B ritain and France, and
would secure Soviet neutrality in a war with Poland,
thus preventing a two- ront confict.
In act, the S oviet Union had initially avoured an
alliance with B ritain and France. In 1 93 4, the S oviet
Union had j oined the League o Nations and, alarmed
by the growing power o Hitler, had hoped that
collective security would work to prevent Hitler s
aggression. However, the Western democracies were
still suspicious o a communist government and had
worked to appease Hitler. The French alone had
signed a de ensive pact with the S oviet Union in
response to German rearmament in 1 93 5 , but this
collapsed a ter the Munich Agreement.
Despite the Munich Agreement and what seemed
to Stalin a capitulation to the Nazis, he renewed a
proposal o a military alliance with the West ollowing Hitler s occupation o
Prague. However, negotiations with the democracies dragged on, both sides Communication and
ultimately distrusting each other (see C hapter 2.7) . Meanwhile, Stalin had social skills
also made it clear to the Germans that he would welcome an agreement
and as a result, on 2 4 August 1 939, Germany pulled o one o the most In pairs or small groups,
controversial and cynical alliances in modern history: the Nazi Soviet Pact. discuss the meaning of the
cartoon above.
Under this Non-Aggression Pact, the Soviet Union and Nazi Germany
Why was an agreement
each pledged to remain neutral in the event o either nation being
between the Soviet Union and
attacked by a third party. In addition, the pact included a secret protocol
Nazi Germany so surprising and
dividing Northern and Eastern Europe into German and Soviet spheres o
shocking to Poland, and also to
infuence: the B altic states and B essarabia in Romania were to be in the
the rest of the world?
Russian sphere, and Poland was to be divided between the two powers.

Source skills
Source A Article I. B oth High C ontracting Parties
The Nazi S oviet Pact, 23 August 1 93 9 obligate themselves to desist rom any act o
violence, any aggressive action, and any attack
The Go ve rnme nt o the Ge rman Reich and on each other, either individually or j ointly
The Go ve rnme nt o the Unio n o S o viet with other Powers.
S o cialist Rep ub lics de siro us o strengthening
the cau se o p eace b e twe en Ge rmany and Article II. Should one o the High
the U. S . S . R. , and p ro ce eding ro m the C ontracting Parties become the obj ect o
undame ntal p rovisio ns o the Ne utrality belligerent action by a third Power, the other
Agre eme nt co ncluded in Ap ril, 1 9 2 6 High C ontracting Party shall in no manner
betwee n Germany and the U. S . S . R. , have lend its support to this third Power.
re ache d the o llo wing Agreement:

Article III. The Governments o the two High The question o whether the interests o both
C ontracting Parties shall in the uture maintain parties make desirable the maintenance o
continual contact with one another or the an independent Polish S tate and how such a
purpose o consultation in order to exchange state should be bounded can only be de nitely
in ormation on problems a ecting their determined in the course o urther political
common interests. developments.
Article IV. Neither o the two High In any event both Governments will resolve
contracting parties shall participate in any this question by means o a riendly agreement.
grouping o powers whatsoever that is
Article III. With regard to S outheastern
directly or indirectly aimed at the other party.
E urope, attention is called by the S oviet side
Article V. Should disputes or conficts to its interest in B essarabia. The German side
arise between the High C ontracting Parties declares its complete political disinterest in
over problems o one kind or another, both these areas.
parties shall settle these disputes or conficts
Article IV. This protocol shall be treated by
exclusively through riendly exchange
both parties as strictly secret.
o opinion or, i necessary, through the
establishment o arbitration commissions. Moscow, August 2 3 , 1 93 9.

Article VI. The present Treaty is concluded Source B

or a period o ten years, with the proviso
that, in so ar as one o the High C ontracting
Parties does not advance it one year prior to
the expiration o this period, the validity o
this Treaty shall automatically be extended or
another ve years.
Article VII. The present treaty shall be
rati ed within the shortest possible time. The
rati cations shall be exchanged in B erlin. The
Agreement shall enter into orce as soon as it
is signed.
The section below was not published at the time the
above was announced.
S ecret additional p rotocol
Article I. In the event o a territorial
and political rearrangement in the areas
belonging to the B altic S tates ( Finland,
E stonia, Latvia, Lithuania) , the northern
boundary o Lithuania shall represent the
boundary o the spheres o infuence o
Germany and U. S . S . R. In this connection
the interest o Lithuania in the Vilna area is The signing of the Nazi Soviet Pact
recognized by each party.
Article II. In the event o a territorial and
First question, part a 3 marks
political rearrangement o the areas belonging According to Source A, what measures were to
to the Polish state, the spheres o infuence o be ollowed to maintain peace between the two
Germany and the U.S .S .R. shall be bounded countries?
approximately by the line o the rivers Narev, First question, part b 2 marks
Vistula and S an.
What is the message o Source B ?
C H APT E R 2 . 5 : G E R M AN E XPAN S I O N , 1 9 3 8 19 4 0

For Hitler, this alliance meant that he could have a ree hand in Poland and
that he could avoid fghting a war on two ronts. He could also get valuable
raw materials rom the Soviet Union. He clearly regarded it as a short-term
expedient due to his long-term plans or attaining in the East.
For Stalin, there were also considerable advantages, as ollows.
It would keep the Soviet Union out o a war. This was important as
it aced a threat in the East rom Japan, and the army was weakened
a ter S talin s p urges ( see glossary box) .
There was always the hope that Germany and the West would weaken
each other in the war and that the Soviet Union would emerge as the
strongest nation. Stalin s purges
During the 1930s, Stalin killed
He got considerable territorial gains rom the pact: hal o Poland and
or purged anyone considered
the opportunity to take over Finland and the B altic S tates.
to be a threat. This included
The S oviet Union could keep trading with Germany: Germany was peasants, workers, political
to send mechanical goods to the S oviet Union in return or raw opponents and even senior
materials and oodstu s ( see S ource B below or the importance o military ofcers. In act, approx
this to Germany) . 35,000 ofcers were either
shot or imprisoned.
Two contrasting views of the Nazi Soviet Pact
Thinking and communication skills
Source A Source B
Molotov s comments to the Supreme Soviet on the Comment by Dr Julius Schnurre, Head o the Economic
ratifcation o the Non-Aggression Pact, 31 August 1939. Policy Division o the German oreign ministry,
The chie importance o the Soviet-German non- 24 October 1939.
aggression pact lies in the act that the two largest The Agreement means a wide open door to the East or
States o Europe have agreed to put an end to enmity us. The raw material purchases rom the Soviet Union
between them, to eliminate the menace o war and to and rom the countries bordering the Soviet Union can
live at peace one with the other still be considerably increased. But it is essential to
Only the instigators o a general European war can meet the German commitments to the extent required.
be dissatis ed with this position o a airs In view o the great volume this will require a special
e ort. I we succeed in expanding exports to the East
It is really difcult or these gentlemen to understand in the required volume, the e ects o the English
the purpose o the Soviet-German non-aggression pact, blockade will be decisively weakened by the incoming
on the strength o which the USSR is not obliged to raw materials.
involve itsel in war either on the side o Great Britain
against Germany, or on the side o Germany against Questions
Great Britain. 1 What do Sources A and B indicate about the di erent
Is it really difcult to comprehend that the USSR ways in which the Soviet Union and Germany viewed
is pursuing and will continue to pursue its own this pact?
independent policy based on the interests o the 2 Does this pact support the idea that Hitler did in
peoples o the USSR and only these interests? act, have a clearly planned oreign policy, but was
taking advantage o situations as they arose?
3 Which country do you consider gained most rom this

Source skills
A cartoon by D avid Low, Rendezvous , p ublished in the Evening Standard newsp aper
on 2 0 S ep tember 1 93 9.

The text reads: ( Hitler to Stalin) The scum of the Earth, I believe? ; (Stalin to Hitler)
The bloody assassin of the workers, I presume? .

First question, part b 2 marks

What is the message of this source?

E xaminer s hint: Note The outbreak of war

that the cartoonist is making D espite B ritain s and France s assurances to Poland, Hitler did not believe
two key points here. What do that they would take any action at all, let alone declare war. As historian
the greetings that Hitler and Roderick S tackelberg writes:
Stalin are giving one another
Hitler could not conceive that Britain and France, having ailed to fght
indicate about the true nature
or a militarily strong and democratic Czechoslovakia a year be ore despite
o their relationship? What
the assurance o Soviet aid, would now fght to save a militarily weak and
is the signifcance o the dead
undemocratic Poland without the prospect o Soviet aid . Stackelberg, 1 999
body on the ground, which
has come about as a result o
the meeting or rendez-vous
between the two dictators?
C H APT E R 2 . 5 : G E R M AN E XPAN S I O N , 1 9 3 8 19 4 0

Hitler was therefore taken back when he heard that B ritain and Poland
had signed a full military alliance on 2 5 August. At the same time,
Mussolini informed him that he was not ready for war. Hitler thus delayed
his attack on Poland planned for 2 6 August until 1 September. Hoping to
cause a division between B ritain and Poland, he also gave a last-minute
proposal to Britain. This involved guaranteeing the British Empire and
trying to reach an agreement on disarmament on the condition that Britain
give Germany a free hand in D anzig and the Polish Corridor. However, this
was not taken up by B ritain. The Poles also refused further negotiation.
On 31 August, Mussolini proposed that a conference should be held to
resolve the crisis. However, Hitler wanted war and was not prepared to wait
for any peace initiatives. That same evening, Germany claimed that one
of its wireless stations near the Polish border had been attacked by Poles.
In reality, SS soldiers dressed in Polish uniforms had staged the attack. To
make it appear authentic, they left behind the bodies of convicted criminals
who had been dressed in Polish uniforms, killed by lethal injection and
shot. This so-called Polish attack was used as the excuse for war. At 4.45am
on 1 September 1 939, German troops invaded Poland and German planes
bombed Warsaw.
On 3 September, the B ritish government presented an ultimatum to
Germany to call off the attack by 1 1 .00am. When no response had been
received by this time, Britain and France declared war. Hitler hoped that the
war on Poland would remain a localized affair; in fact, he had unleashed
the most destructive war of all time. As historian Donald Watt concludes:
What is extraordinary in the events which led up to the outbreak of the
Second World War is that Hitler s will for war was able to overcome the
reluctance with which everybody else approached it. Hitler willed, desired,
lusted after war, though not the war with France and Britain, at least not in
1 939. No one else wanted it, though Mussolini came perilously close to talking
himself into it. Watt, 2 001

H itlers actions afterthe d eclaration ofwar

Following the B ritish declaration of war, Hitler launched an attack on
Poland. S ubj ected to a blitzkrieg style of war, the Poles were quickly
defeated, and Germany and the US SR divided up Poland along the
so-called Ribbentrop Molotov line as had been agreed in the Nazi- S oviet
Pact of 1 93 9. The Germans were now able to transfer most of their forces
to the west.

The phoney war

In October 1 93 9, Hitler offered peace proposals but very few people
in B ritain now trusted Hitler, and these were not taken up. However,
there was no direct action from Hitler against the West for the next few
months. This was the period known as the phoney war .

H itlertakes overEu rope

The calm of the phoney war was broken in April 1 940. These are the key
events, 1 93 9 40:
Hitler s troops occupied D enmark and landed at the Norwegian ports
in April 1 940.

1 87
1 0 May, Germany attacked Holland, B elgium and France
simultaneously. Again, Hitler achieved swi t victories. The D utch
surrendered a ter our days; B elgium at the end o May. B ritish
troops had to evacuate rom D unkirk in June 1 940 as the invading
German troops swept through France.
A ter the B ritish had le t, the Germans moved southwards; Paris
was captured 1 4th June and France surrendered 2 2 nd June.
The Germans occupied northern France and the Atlantic coast;
unoccupied France was allowed its own government under Marshal
Petain; however it had no real independence
To secure the de eat o B ritain in the planned invasion called
O peration S ea lion , the Germans needed control o the air over the
English C hannel. This led to the B attle or B ritain during the summer
and autumn o 1 940 as the B ritish Royal Air Force ought Lu twa e
planes in the skies above the coast o B ritain.
Although on the verge o de eating the RAF, Hitler switched to the
bombing o London and other B ritish cities. This marked the start
o the B litz. Hitler hoped that this would break the morale o the
B ritish, however by the middle o 1 941 , this was still not the case.
It was at this point that Hitler decided to turn back to one o his main
oreign policy aims: achieving lebensraum in the E ast. Thus, Hitler
launched Operation B arbarossa against the S oviet Union in June
1 941 with B ritain still unde eated. Hitler anticipated that the attack
against the Soviet Union would end in a speedy S oviet de eat, a ter
which he would be able to return to fnish o B ritain. However, ar
rom ensuring a victorious fnale, the invasion o the Soviet Union
would ensure that the war would go on or much longer and that
Hitler would eventually be de eated.

Self-management and thinking skills

Task one Task three
Return to the question on page 161. How ar had Hitler ul lled his oreign policy aims?
What new examples to explain Hitler s success in In Chapter 2.2, we identi ed Hitler s aims were to:
achieving his aims can you add to these headings? destroy the Treaty o Versailles
Hitler s tactical skill unite all Germans
Luck gain more (living space) or the Germans
The role the distractions and diferences o the other gain Britain and Italy as allies.
powers played
For each o these aims, identi y the extent to which it was
What other actors played a role? achieved and give evidence or your conclusions.
Task two Task four
Review Hitler s actions between 1933 and 1939. You have read about the pacts and treaties signed by
Decide how ar you agree with Bullock s claim that Japan, Italy and Germany between 1933 and 1939. Copy
Hitler was able to combine consistency in aim with and complete the ollowing table to consolidate your
opportunism and improvisation in how he conducted understanding o these agreements.
his oreign policy.

C H APT E R 2 . 5 : G E R M AN E XPAN S I O N , 1 9 3 8 19 4 0

Agreement Countries involved Efect/impact o this Reasons or the outcome

Non-Aggression Pact, 1934
Stresa Front, 1935
Anglo-German Naval Treaty, 1935
Rome Berlin Axis, 1936
Anti-Comintern Pact, 1936
Pact of Steel, 1939
Nazi Soviet Pact, 1939
Anglo Polish Treaty, 1939

Task fve
Comparing and contrasting case studies.
a In pairs, compare and contrast the aims and methods c In small groups compare and contrast the aims,
of Mussolini s and Hitler s foreign policies in the 1930s. methods and results of the foreign policies of the
b In pairs, compare and contrast the successes and expansionist states in Europe and Asia.
failures of Mussolini s and Hitler s foreign policies in
the 1930s.

Full document question: The outbreak o war, September 1939

Source A to both sides would certainly have been
Germany s rep ly to B ritain s ultimatum, ound between Germany and Poland.
received at 1 1 .2 0am, 3 Sep tember 1 93 9. For Germany did not have the intentio n
nor had she raised the demands o
The German Government and the German annihilating Poland. The Reich demanded
people re use to receive, accept, let alone only the revisio n o tho se articles o the
ulfl, demands in the ultimatum made by the Versailles Treaty which already at the
B ritish Government. time o the ormulation o that D ictate
1 . O n our eastern rontier there has or had been described by understanding
many mo nths already reigned a conditio n statesmen o all nations as being in the
o war. S ince the time when the Versailles long run unbearable, and there ore
Treaty frst to re Germany to pieces, impossible or a great nation and also or
all and every p eace ul settlement was the entire political and economic interests
re used to all German Governments. o E astern E urope. The blame or
The National S ocialist Government also having prevented this peace ul revision
has since the year 1 9 3 3 tried again and lies with the B ritish C abinet policy
again to remove by peace ul negotiations 2 . The German people and their Government
the wo rst breaches o j ustice o this do not, like B ritain, intend to dominate the
treaty. The B ritish Government have been world, but they are determined to de end
among those who, by their intransigent their own liberty, their independence, and
attitude, took the chie part in rustrating above all their li e we shall there ore
every practical revision. Without the answer any aggressive action on the part
intervention o the B ritish Government o E ngland with the same weapons and in
a reasonable solution doing j ustice the same orm.

Source B The relationship with Poland has become
A cartoon by D avid Low published in the unbearable My proposals to Poland were
UK newsp ap er, the Evening Standard, on rustrated by E ngland s intervention. Poland
2 1 O ctober 1 93 9. has changed her tone toward us. A permanent
state o initiative cannot be allowed to pass
to others The probability is still great that
the West will not intervene. We must take the
risk with ruthless determination [S] pecial
reasons orti y me in my view. E ngland and
France have undertaken obligations which
neither is in a position to ulfl The West
has only two possibilities or fghting against
us: 1 . B lockade: it will not be e ective because
o our autarky and because we have sources
o supply in E astern E urope. 2 . Attack in
the West rom the Maginot Line: I consider
this impossible.

Source D
Hitler s sp eech to p arty leaders at
O bersalzberg, 22 August 1 93 9.
O ur strength lies in our quickness and in
our brutality; Genghis Khan sent millions o
women and children to death knowingly and
with a light heart. History sees in him only
the great ounder o S tates. I have given the
command and I shall shoot everyone who
utters one word o criticism. And so or the
present only in the East I have put my death-
Source C head ormations in place with the command
relentlessly and without compassion to send
Hitler s sp eech to his commanders-in-chief,
into death many women and children o
2 2 August 1 93 9.
Polish origin and language. O nly thus we can
I have called you together to give you a picture gain the living space that we need
o the political situation, in order that you may
To be sure a new situation has arisen.
have some insight into the individual actors
I experienced those poor worms D aladier and
on which I have based my decision to act and
C hamberlain in Munich. They will be too
in order to strengthen your confdence
cowardly to attack. They won t go beyond a
It is easy or us to make decisions. We have blockade. Against that we have our autarchy
nothing to lose, we have everything to gain and Russian raw materials.
[O ] ur economic situation is such that we
Poland will be depopulated and settled with
cannot hold out more than a ew more years
Germans. My pact with the Poles was merely
We have no other choice, we must act. Our
conceived o as a gaining o time. As or the
opponents will be risking a great deal and can
rest, gentlemen, the ate o Russia will be
gain only a little. B ritain s stake in a war is
exactly the same as I am now going through
inconceivably great. O ur enemies have leaders
with in the case o Poland. A ter Stalin s death
who are below average. No personalities. No
he is a very sick man we will break the Soviet
masters, no men o action
Union. Then there will begin the dawn o the
German rule o the earth.
C H APT E R 2 . 5 : G E R M AN E XPAN S I O N , 1 9 3 8 19 4 0

First question, part a 3 marks Third question 6 marks

According to S ource A, how had B ritain caused C ompare and contrast Sources A and C regarding
the outbreak of hostilities in S eptember 1 93 9? Hitler s motivations for the attack on Poland.

First question, part b 2 marks Fourth question 9 marks

What is the message of S ource B ? Using the sources and your own knowledge
examine the reasons for Hitler s attack on Poland
Second question 4 marks in S eptember 1 93 9.
With reference to its origin, purpose and content
assess the values and limitations of using S ource
A as evidence of Hitler s aims in 1 93 9.

B ullock, A. 1 96 7. Hitler and the Origins of the Second World War. Oxford
University Press. Oxford, UK
C raig, G. 1 978. Germany 1 866 1 945. O xford University Press.
Oxford, UK
Fischer, K. 1 9 95 . Nazi Germany: A New History. C onstable. London, UK
Stackelberg, R. 1 999. Hitler s Germany. Routledge, UK
Watt, D . 2 001 . How War Came. Pimlico. London, UK
2.6 The in tern ation alrespon se toItalian
aggression ( 1935 1940)


Discuss the reasons or the British and French policy o appeasement.

Examine the response o the international community to Italian aggression.

Stanley Baldwin, Prime Minister

of Britain 1935 37

The League o Nations ormally comes

1920 Jan uary
into being
Japanese invasion o Manchuria:
1931 Septem ber condemned by the League o Nations;
weak sanctions are imposed
World Disarmament Con erence 1932 34
Franklin D Roosevelt is elected
1932 Nov em ber
president in the USA
Hitler becomes Chancellor o Germany 1933 Jan uary
Italy sends troops to its border with
1934 July to prevent Hitler s attempts at

The Stresa Con erence 1935 April

The Neutrality Act passed (expires in
Italy invades Abyssinia six months)
Roosevelt invokes the Neutrality Act, October
preventing the supply o arms to either
country 7 October The Council o the League declares
Italy to be the aggressor in Abyssinia
The League s Assembly votes to impose
11 October
Nov em ber Limited sanctions are applied

The Hoare Laval Pact Decem ber

C H A P T E R 2 . 6 : T H E I N T E R N AT I O N A L R E S P O N S E T O I T A L I A N A G G R E S S I O N ( 1 9 3 5 1 9 4 0 )

1936 January The French Popular Front wins the election.

The USA passes new Neutrality Acts February

May Italy conquers Abyssinia

The League ends sanctions on Italy
Italy and Germany intervene in the July
Spanish Civil War
Britain and France set up Non-Intervention
The USA passes a joint resolution
1937 January
outlawing the arms trade in Spain
Neville Chamberlain becomes Prime
Minister of Britain
Italy withdraws from the League of Nations December

In an Italian and British agreement, Britain

1938 April
recognizes Italian Abyssinia

Mussolini now accepts May

The Munich Conference: Mussolini, Hitler,

Chamberlain and Daladier meet
Hitler invades areas of Czechoslovakia,
1939 March
breaking the Munich Agreement

April Italy invades Albania

Italy declares itself a non-belligerent when

1 September
Germany invades Poland
Mussolini attempts to set up a conference
3 September
to avoid war
Mussolini declares war on Britain and
1940 June

September October Italy invades Egypt and Greece

USA passes the Lend Lease Act 1941 March

What was the policy of appeasement and why was it
pursued by Britain in the 1930s?
Appeasement, in this political and historical context, was a diplomatic
policy o making concessions to nations in order to avoid con ict. The
policy is most closely associated with B ritain s oreign policy in the late
1 93 0s, in particular the Munich crisis o 1 93 8. Appeasement ailed
to prevent the outbreak o war and came to be seen as a weak and
dishonourable policy. It allowed both Mussolini and Hitler to get away
with territorial demands, which encouraged Hitler to ask continuously or
more, resulting in the outbreak o war in 1 939. However, or most o the
inter-war years, appeasement was seen as a positive idea, and as part o a
long-standing tradition o trying to settle disputes peace ully.
In B ritain, there were many reasons to ollow a policy o appeasement in
the 1 93 0s:
Neville Chamberlain, prime
minister of Britain, 1937 40 1 Public opinion
The Franchise Act o 1 91 8 had increased the number o voters in B ritain
rom 8 million to 21 million; or the frst time, women over the age o 30
were given the vote, and rom 1 928, this was lowered to the age o 2 1 .
This huge increase in the electorate meant that politicians were more likely
to take notice o public opinion, which was against war and in avour o
collective security.
The horror o the First World War had created a widespread eeling that
this should be the war to end all wars . This anti- war eeling was seen
clearly in February 1 93 3 , when the Ox ord Union debating society voted
that This House would not fght or King and C ountry . The destruction
by German bomber aircra t o Guernica in S pain in 1 93 7 showed the
vulnerability o London to attack rom the air and highlighted the need
to prevent another war that would clearly have a devastating e ect on
civilians on the B ritish mainland. As S tanley B aldwin told the House o
C ommons in 1 93 2 , I think it is as well for the man in the street to realise
that no power on earth can protect him from being bombed. Whatever people may
tell him, the bomber will always get through . It was widely believed that
there would be 1 5 0, 000 casualties in London in the frst week o war.
The B ritish public put aith in the League o Nations to maintain peace
through collective security. There was even a League o Nations Union
in B ritain, which had more than 400, 000 supporters in 1 93 5 . The Union
carried out a peace ballot in 1 93 5 , which appeared to show that the
B ritish public ully supported the League and its principles.

2 The demands o the dictators seen as justifed

Many B ritish politicians elt that the Treaty o Versailles was too harsh
and that Hitler had genuine grievances relating to the First World War.
Increasingly, there was a belie that the First World War had been
caused by all the powers, not j ust by Germany and her allies, and thus
there was support or the idea o revising the more punitive clauses o
the treaty. In particular, C hamberlain believed, mistakenly, that it was
possible to do business with Mussolini and Hitler, and to sort out the
grievances o these countries rationally and without recourse to war.
C H A P T E R 2 . 6 : T H E I N T E R N AT I O N A L R E S P O N S E T O I T A L I A N A G G R E S S I O N ( 1 9 3 5 1 9 4 0 )

In addition, many conservative politicians saw the threat o communism

as more dangerous than the threat o ascism.

3 The lack of an alternative policy

Support or appeasement was ound in all political parties and there
was no clear anti- appeasement party to provide a coherent political
alternative. The Labour Party, which was the political party in opposition,
supported collective security but did not support rearmament.

4 Economic pressures
There were also economic reasons or ollowing a policy o appeasement.
Already weakened severely by the First World War, the Great D epression
worsened B ritain s economic situation urther still. B y the 1 93 0s, B ritain
was acing competition rom other countries that were overtaking
its industrial production. It also aced high unemployment: 3 million
people were unemployed in the early 1 93 0s. These economic di fculties
made it hard to spend money on armaments; no government would
be able to maintain support i it cut wel are benefts in order to fnance
rearmament. It was also eared that rearming too quickly would cause
a balance o payments crisis, with too many imports o machinery and
raw materials. For these reasons, although rearmament started again in
1 93 2 , it was not until 1 93 7 that de ence spending increased dramatically.

The Anti-Appeasers
Some individuals did speak out against appeasement:
Foreign Secretary Anthony Winston Churchill called
Eden resigned in or rearmament to be
February 1938 because stepped up and
he disagreed with vehemently opposed
Chamberlain s policy concessions to Germany
o appeasement o Italy. (though he did not oppose
the appeasement o
Mussolini over Abyssinia) .
He supported the idea o
a Grand Alliance o the
Anti-Fascist powers.

Duf Cooper was You will have seen

Secretary o State or plenty o David Low s
War (1935 1937) and cartoons in this book.
then First Lord o the These appeared
Admiralty in Chamberlain s in the Evening Standard
government until he newspaper and were
resigned in protest at consistently critical o
the Munich Agreement appeasement throughout
in September 1938. the 1930s. Low was
attacked in the right-wing
press as a war-monger
and his cartoons were
banned in Germany.

B ritain was in a weak military position and, by 1 93 7, with threats rom
TOK Japan, Italy and Germany, this position was becoming increasingly
There have been many critics o dangerous. As a result, the B ritish C hie s o Sta concluded that, until
the policy o appeasement as rearmament was urther advanced, it should be the main aim o oreign
pursued by Britain and France policy to reduce the number o B ritain s enemies. This was reiterated in
in the 1930s. As you have read January 1 93 8 in this statement: We cannot foresee the time when our defence
here, those involved at the time forces will be strong enough to safeguard our territory, trade and vital interests
seem to have had a di erent against Germany, Italy and Japan simultaneously .
view and this perspective was
supported by public opinion. 5 Global commitments
In pairs discuss the extent to B ritain had to consider its worldwide commitments alongside its
which history looked di erent obligations to European countries and the League o Nations. Indeed,
in the past. Create a poster: most politicians considered B ritish interests to be more global than
History itsel looked di erent European. Preservation and de ence o the E mpire was held to be
in the past outlining your essential i B ritain was to remain a great world power, which was its
ideas. Include re erences to the priority. However, B ritain s imperial commitments were now so vast that
material you have covered in they were becoming increasingly di fcult to administer and de end.
this book. In addition, the D ominions ( the sel -governing parts o the B ritish
Empire, such as C anada, Australia and New Zealand) made it clear at the
1 93 7 Imperial C on erence that they were not prepared to help B ritain in
another E uropean war.

6 Defence priorities
Thinking skills Worried about the cost o its expenditure, the Treasury was also putting
What does the oreign pressure on the Foreign O fce. In 1 93 7, the Treasury put orward a report
ofce report on de ence on de ence expenditure in which the priorities or de ence were to be, in
expenditure show about order o importance:
Britain s expectations or a military preparation su fcient to repulse air attacks
uture war? How might France
the preservation o trade routes or the supply o ood and
react to this report?
raw materials
the de ence o the E mpire
the de ence o B ritain s allies.

7 The impact of Neville Chamberlain

C learly, the fnancial pressures, the commitments o E mpire and the
comments rom the C hie s o Sta meant that C hamberlain, when
he became Prime Minister in 1 937, would have little choice but to
ollow a policy that looked or conciliation rather than con rontation
with Germany and Italy. However, C hamberlain s own personal views
also had an impact. He detested war and was determined to resolve
international tension and to use negotiation and diplomacy to bring
about a peace ul settlement o Europe. C hamberlain ran oreign policy
very much alone, with the aid o his chie adviser, Sir Horace Wilson,
but without consulting his C abinet. He had little aith in the League or
in B ritain s allies, France and the US A; he distrusted the S oviet Union,
and he believed that B ritain should take the lead in negotiating with
Hitler. Right up to the moment that war broke out, C hamberlain
continued to hope that he could achieve a general settlement o
Europe to maintain peace.

C H A P T E R 2 . 6 : T H E I N T E R N AT I O N A L R E S P O N S E T O I T A L I A N A G G R E S S I O N ( 1 9 3 5 1 9 4 0 )

Communication Class discussion

skills How might the policy o
Go to, or search or Why Appeasement? appeasement encourage
expansionist states?
Watch a summary o the reasons or Britain s policy o appeasement. Make notes
on the frst 10 minutes o this video clip.
Add notes to the points above on the reasons behind Britain s policy o appeasement.

Why did France align its oreign policy to Britain s policy

o appeasement in the 1930s?
France certainly did not agree with many o B ritain s views regarding
Germany and the Treaty o Versailles, and there was no indication in the
1 92 0s that it would ollow a policy o appeasement. It aced huge debts
a ter the First World War and, unlike B ritain, had su ered economically
rom the impact o the fghting on its land; about 1 0% had been laid to
waste, which had an impact on industrial and agricultural resources.
The huge loss o li e, and the resultant trauma to French society, meant
that the French population wanted Germany punished and permanently
weakened to prevent any uture German attack. France had been
invaded twice by Germany between 1 870 and 1 91 4 and the French
wanted to prevent a resurgent Germany at all costs.
When the USA ailed frst to rati y the Treaty o Versailles and then to
j oin the League o Nations, the French elt abandoned. When B ritain also
showed some sympathy with the view that Germany had been treated
too harshly at Versailles, the French were appalled at this apparent
collapse o the Anglo American guarantee o the post- war settlement.
The French subsequently attempted to uphold the terms o the treaty by
orce when they occupied the Ruhr in 1 92 3. However, the occupation
ended in de eat or France and was ollowed by a period o appeasement
under Foreign Minister Aristide B riand; this can be seen in the D awes
Plan o 1 924, the Locarno Agreements o 1 925 and the evacuation o
French troops rom the Rhineland in 1 93 0.
In an attempt to strengthen its position, France also tried to fnd other
allies and signed a series o bilateral agreements through the 1 92 0s
with B elgium (1 92 0) , Poland ( 1 92 0 and 1 92 5 ) , C zechoslovakia ( 1 92 4) ,
Romania ( 1 92 6 ) and Yugoslavia ( 1 92 7) . C zechoslovakia, Romania and
Yugoslavia had signed a mutual de ence agreement in what became
known as the Little Entente . France supported this alliance.
However, the requent changes o government and ideological con icts
in France in the 1 93 0s meant that it was unable to take any action
against Germany. German reparations ended and, coupled with the
impact o the Great D epression, the French economy stagnated. The
ranc had been overvalued, exports ell and unemployment increased.
In 1 93 2 , a coalition o socialists and radicals won the general election.
E douard Herriot was initially elected Prime Minister, but due to his
ailure to redress the economic issues he was orced to resign and was Edouard Daladier, the French
replaced by E douard D aladier. D aladier did not bring stability, however, Prime Minister in 1938

and there were six di erent C abinets in less than two years. E conomic
problems ostered the growth o right- wing leagues, some o whom
emulated Mussolini s Fascists. Right- wing activity galvanized le t- wing
unity and led to the ormation o the Popular Front, an alliance o le t-
wing parties. In January 1 93 6, the Popular Front won a resounding
victory in the general elections under the leadership o Prime Minister
Leon B lum. However, B lum s government was criticized by the right

Thinking and social skills or expensive domestic re orms when they believed France should
In pairs compare and contrast have been rearming. B lum was also criticized or his attempts to take a
the British and French reasons frm stance against internal Fascist threats. D aladier returned as Prime
or pursuing a policy o Minister in May 1 93 8 and managed to establish some political stability
appeasement towards the as he moved to the right and supported a huge in arms spending. These
aggressor states in the 1930s. continual changes in government meant that there was little continuity
Are there more similarities or in how to deal with Hitler.
more diferences? In addition, there was a con ict between France s oreign policy and
its military planning. D espite a series o guarantees to the states o
Eastern Europe, which would have required France to demonstrate

Self-management skills
some o ensive capability, its military planning in the 1 93 0s was entirely
Review Chapter 2.3 on de ensive. This was in contrast to its o ensive action in the 1 92 0s,
Mussolini s expansion in the and most clearly seen in the building o the Maginot Line, a chain o
1930s. Consider the extent to ortresses along the Franco German border. Furthermore, France s air
which a policy o appeasement orce was ine ectual and its army limited. As a result, the French became
would have encouraged increasingly dependent on B ritain. When B ritain decided on a policy o
Mussolini s aggression. appeasement in the 1 93 0s France had to ollow its strongest ally s line.

How was the international response to aggression

in the 1930s afected by the weaknesses o the
League o Nations?
Re er back to Chapter 1.3, The international response to acts o expansion and aggression in the 1 93 0s
page 62, to review the aims should have been dealt with through the mechanism to acilitate collective
o the League. security: the League o Nations. However, the League had many limitations:
It lacked the credibility and economic power o its ounding nation,
the US A.
Its key organ o power was the C ouncil, which was led by B ritain,
France, Italy and Japan, with Germany j oining in 1 92 6. The latter
three countries were revisionist powers who wanted to revise the
Treaty o Versailles.
The Soviet Union was not a member until S eptember 1 93 4.
The League s structure and organization was ine fcient.
It was impotent in the ace o the aggressive military ascist states,
and each time it ailed to act e ectively it lost more authority.
Without the economic and diplomatic power o the USA, it was up to
B ritain and France to uphold the League s resolutions and en orce its
decisions. However, B ritain was inclined to look a ter its own interests
frst, while France had little aith in the League s ability to contain
Mussolini s Italy or Hitler s Germany.

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What was the impact of US foreign policy on

the international response to the expansionist
As has been discussed in C hapter 1 .3 , the US A did not j oin the League o
Nations in 1 9 1 9 and it pursued a policy o isolationism in the inter- war
period. The USA wanted to be ree to engage in trade and investment
globally and wished to avoid being drawn into con icts that were not
in its own interests. This policy continued during the 1 9 30s and was
strengthened by the impact o the Great D epression and by public
opinion, which was staunchly anti- war. Memories o the First World
War also remained resh in the minds o Americans. US isolationists
advocated a policy o non- involvement in the a airs o both Europe and
Asia. In 1 935 , the USA passed the Neutrality Act designed to keep the
US A out o a possible European war by banning the sale o armaments Franklin D Roosevelt, US president
from 1933
to belligerents.

Source skills
A.J.P. Taylor. The Origins of the Second World supply. President Roosevelt could provide only
War (1 961 ) . moral exhortation; and this was the very thing
which Western statesmen eared. It would tie
American isolationism completed the isolation
their hands in dealing with Hitler and Mussolini;
o Europe. Academic commentators observed,
it would work against the concessions which
rightly, that the problem o the two dictators
they were ready to make. Great B ritain and
would be solved , i the two World Powers,
France had already too much moral capital;
Soviet Russia and the United States, were
what they lacked was material strength. None
drawn into European a airs. This observation
was orthcoming rom the United States.
was a desire, not a policy. Western statesmen
would have grasped eagerly at material backing First question, part a 3 marks
rom across the Atlantic. This was not on o er.
What, according to AJP Taylor, was the impact o
The United States were unarmed except in
the USA s policy o isolationism?
the Pacifc; and neutrality legislation made it
impossible or them to act even as a base o

What was the impact of Soviet foreign policy on

the international response to the expansionist
Western hostility towards the Soviet Union also a ected its response
to Italian and German aggression. The Western democracies had cut
o all diplomatic and economic ties with the B olshevik government
in 1 91 7 and had invaded Russia in an attempt to overthrow the new
regime. This ailed, but the US S R was not included in the Paris Peace
talks and the Russian B olshevik leader, Vladimir Lenin, had called the
League o Nations, on its oundation, a band o robbers . Relations
remained hostile until the end o the 1 92 0s when some diplomatic links
and economic agreements were made. B ritain remained particularly
concerned with the potential threat rom communism and, ollowing a
red scare in 1 92 7, did not restore diplomatic links until 1 93 0.
Source skills
A S oviet
p oster by D .
p roduced in
Moscow, in the
S oviet Union,
June 1 93 0.
The text reads
of all countries,
Unite! .

First question,
part b 2 marks
What is the
message o the
artist in this

Thinking and social skills

Look at the details o this
Soviet poster. In pairs or groups,
discuss how the Western
democracies o the 1930s
might have reacted to this
Soviet propaganda.

The Soviet Union under Stalin ( rom 1 929) wanted to build socialism in one
country , which meant that it would not commit to exporting the revolution
and social skills until the process was complete in the USSR. Nevertheless, the activities o
Work in pairs. Create a diagram the Communist International in Europe and Asia alarmed the democracies.
to show the actors infuencing Stalin s oreign policy began to shi t away rom hostility towards the West
the policy o appeasement that when the Soviet Union became threatened by the expansionist policies o
France and Britain took towards Japan in Asia, and by Hitler s stated aim o acquiring in the East
Mussolini and Hitler in the 1930s. o Europe at the expense o the Soviet Union. Between 1 931 and 1 932,
Stalin signed non-aggression pacts with A ghanistan, Finland, Lithuania,
Latvia, Estonia, Poland and France. There was a tangible shi t in Soviet
oreign policy towards the pursuit o a Popular Front against ascism. To
this end, the Soviet Union joined the League o Nations in 1 934 and signed
mutual assistance pacts with France and Czechoslovakia in 1 935.
Class discussion
However, the aim o orming a Popular Front against ascism ailed
Should the Western because B ritain and France were ollowing a policy o appeasement.
democracies have worked with It was clear to the Soviet Union during the Spanish C ivil War that
the USSR to orm a Popular B ritain in particular eared communism more than ascism. The fnal
Front against Fascism ? What catalyst or the S oviet Union to abandon its attempts to work with the
advantages would this have B ritish and French in order to contain the ascist aggressors came at the
had? Why were the Western Munich C on erence in S eptember 1 93 8. D espite its assistance pact with
democracies reluctant to ally C zechoslovakia and the territorially strategic importance o that country
with the USSR? to the Soviet Union, S talin was not invited to the Munich C on erence.

C H A P T E R 2 . 6 : T H E I N T E R N AT I O N A L R E S P O N S E T O I T A L I A N A G G R E S S I O N ( 1 9 3 5 1 9 4 0 )

What was the international response to the

Italian invasion of Abyssinia in 1935 36?
B oth the French and the B ritish had attempted to keep Mussolini on
side as a key guarantor o the post- war settlement, specifcally to contain
German ambitions to unite with Austria. As previous chapters have
described, the three countries had come together to orm the Stresa Front
in March 1 935 . At this meeting, the French gave Mussolini the impression
that they would tolerate an Italian expansion in East A rica. French
Foreign Minister Pierre Laval had suggested that Italy could go ahead
and acquire political in uence in Abyssinia, as the French interests there
were only economic. Although the French had not condoned a military
takeover o the country, Mussolini believed at this point that they would
not resist.
B ritain had been silent on the matter o Abyssinia when Mussolini
mentioned his plans during the S tresa C on erence. Mussolini hoped this
meant B ritain would have the same attitude as the French. The Italians
were concerned about the potential B ritish response to military action,
particularly as the B ritish could threaten to attack the Italian navy.
The B ritish demonstrated that they wanted to appease Italian expansionist
plans when Foreign Secretary Anthony Eden went to Rome in June
1 935 , with a plan that would give Italy the Ogaden region o Abyssinia
and compensate Emperor Haile Selassie s Abyssinia with access to the
sea via B ritish Somaliland. The Italians now saw that B ritain wanted to
accommodate them, and so they rejected the plan. This perception was
urther rein orced by a report Italy had acquired rom the B ritish oreign
o fce, stating that B ritain would not resist an Italian invasion o Abyssinia.
When Mussolini invaded Abyssinia in October 1 93 5 , there was
widespread international public outrage and condemnation rom the
League o Nations. B ritish public opinion was against the invasion and in
avour o action by the League. As there was a general election in B ritain
in November 1 93 5 , public opinion at the time was all the more important;
a pro-League stance had helped the National government to secure power
in November 1 93 5 . However, as you will see rom the sequence o events
below, the League proved ine ective in dealing with the crisis.

Source skills
Source A convey a warning to Mussolini , as he recalls
Laura Fermi, Jewish-Italian writer and in The Gathering S torm: To cast an army o
p olitical activist, who emigrated to the US A nearly a quarter- million men, embodying the
in 1 93 8 to escap e from Mussolini s Italy, in ower o Italian manhood, upon a barren
(1 966) . shore two thousand miles rom home, against
the goodwill o the whole world and without
In England, in view o the coming elections, command o the sea, and then in this position
the peace ballot , and public opinion, the embark upon what may well be a series o
government embraced an all- out policy campaigns against a people and in regions
in avor o the League o Nations and the which no conqueror in our thousand years
imposition o economic sanctions on aggressor ever thought it worthwhile to subdue, is to
nations. At the end o S eptember Winston give hostages to ortune unparalleled in all
C hurchill spoke in London and tried to history.
It is te mpting to sp eculate what e ect While taking up a position against the
the se words may have had on Mussolini, Ethiopian war and or the League s policies,
i he read them, as C hurchill b elieved he Great B ritain was uno fcially assuring France
did. The chance se ems ne gligib le that at that she would try to water down the sanctions
this late date, co mmitted as he was to the on Italy, i imposed, and connived with France
E thiop ian war b y bo th the atalistic drive in an embargo on arms to Ethiopia through
o his o wn determination and the amo unt the control o the port o D j ibouti, the only
o mone y he had sp ent in the u nde rtaking, access to Abyssinia rom the sea. It is said that
Musso lini would have allo wed this warning Haile Selassie, placing pathetic confdence in
to dissuade him. ( To an inte rviewer ro m traditional B ritish j ustice, could not understand
the Morning Po st, he said that the cost o why it was so di fcult to procure the modern
prep aratio n was already 2 b illio n lire 1 00 arms and equipment he needed and was trying
millio n p re - war do llars and aske d C an so desperately to buy. B ut then, during the
yo u b elieve that we have spent this sum war, the uno fcial embargo was li ted, in part
or no thing? ) at least.
Source B
A cartoon by D avid Low, p ublished in the UK newsp ap er, the Evening Standard, on
2 4 July 1 93 5 .

The text reads On the throne of justice. See no Abyssinia; Hear no Abyssinia; Speak no Abyssinia .

First question, part b 2 marks Second question 4 marks

What is the message o the cartoonist in With re erence to its origin, purpose and content
S ource B ? assess the values and limitations o Source A or
historians studying the international response to
the Abyssinian crisis in 1 93 5 3 6.
C H A P T E R 2 . 6 : T H E I N T E R N AT I O N A L R E S P O N S E T O I T A L I A N A G G R E S S I O N ( 1 9 3 5 1 9 4 0 )

Thinking and social skills

In pairs or groups, discuss the key points made in Source A regarding British
policy in the lead up to the Abyssinian crisis.

The response of the League, Britain and France

On 6 D ecember 1 93 5 , ollowing the Wal Wal incident ( see page 1 3 7) ,
Abyssinian Emperor Haile Selassie asked the League o Nations to
arbitrate; however the League s arbitration committee ound neither
side responsible.
On 7 January 1 93 5 , a Franco Italian agreement was made. In return
or Italian support to contain Hitler, France gave Italy parts o French
Somaliland, improved the o fcial status o Italians living in Tunisia
and tacitly allowed Mussolini to do as he pleased in Abyssinia.
On 1 7 March 1 93 5 , ollowing a large build- up o Italian orces in East
A rica, E mperor Haile S elassie appealed directly to the League, as a
member state, or its support. The Italian mobilization continued and
on 1 1 May S elassie appealed to the League again.
On 2 0 May, the League held a special session to discuss the crisis and
on 1 9 June S elassie requested League observers be sent to the region.
Talks between o fcials rom Italy and Abyssinia broke down at
The Hague.
D espite Anglo French e orts to appease Mussolini and B ritish attempts
via Anthony E den to fnd a peace ul resolution, it was clear rom the
beginning o July that Italy wanted a war o conquest. The B ritish
declared an arms embargo on both sides on 2 5 July, perhaps in response
to Mussolini s assertion that sales o arms to Abyssinia would be seen
as un riendliness towards Italy. It also removed its warships rom the
Mediterranean, an act which enabled Mussolini to have ree movement
o supplies to East A rica.
At the end o September, S elassie again asked or neutral observers, but
on 2 8 September he also began to mobilize his poorly equipped and
outdated army. Without a declaration o war, Italian orces invaded
Abyssinia on 3 October.
On 7 October, the League duly ound Italy the aggressor and began the
process o imposing sanctions; however, this process was slow and the
sanctions were limited. They did not embargo key war materials, such as
coal, steel and oil, and the sanctions were not carried out by all members o
the League. The British government had not wanted to implement harsh
sanctions as Britain wanted to revive the Stresa Front and to maintain good
relations with Mussolini. However, the B ritish government was also under
pressure to uphold the authority o the League.
Nevertheless, B ritain decided not to close the Suez C anal, a signifcant
route or Mussolini s troops and or supplies to East A rica, to Italian
shipping. Austria, Hungary and Nazi Germany ignored the sanctions
completely. The US A actually increased exports to Italy. The sanctions,
there ore, did little to impede the Italian war e ort and, as discussed in
the previous chapter, they in act rallied Italian domestic support behind

E ven when the Italians used chemical weapons in Abyssinia, the League
ailed to take urther action.

The Hoare Laval Pact

In their attempt to maintain the S tresa Front against a resurgent
Germany, the French and B ritish came up with an appeasing plan to
end the confict and the tension it had caused. In D ecember 1 93 5 ,
French oreign secretary, Pierre Laval and B ritish counterpart, S amuel
Hoare drew up the Hoare Laval Pact, which sought to paci y Mussolini
by giving him most o Abyssinia. Selassie would receive access to the
sea. However, the plan was leaked in the French press. Public opinion
in both B ritain and France was outraged by this apparent duplicity
and demanded support or the League s policy. The B ritish and French
governments were orced to denounce the pact and sanctions continued.
Laval and Hoare resigned.

Abyssinia (1 935) and bordering countries The Hoare Laval proposal


t e ANGLO-

e ) o ra

ot H SUDAN ct
Pr I TI S I TA te
LI A Ad (
NE NE en
Adowa A
Aden Adowa Asab Aden
Djibouti Djibouti (French)






I TA Mogadishu

UGANDA Mogadishu

0 300 km


BRITISH FRENCH ITALIAN Assigned Italian sphere of

to Italy economic
in uence

C H A P T E R 2 . 6 : T H E I N T E R N AT I O N A L R E S P O N S E T O I T A L I A N A G G R E S S I O N ( 1 9 3 5 1 9 4 0 )

Thinking and communication skills

Read this source. Discuss the key impact o the Hoare Laval Pact on domestic
politics in Britain and France.
Using this source, identi y political opposition to appeasing Mussolini that existed
in Britain and France.
A.J.P. Taylor. 1961. The Origins of the Second World War (1961) pages 126 127.
Early in December Hoare took the plan to Paris. Laval welcomed it. Mussolini,
warned by his equally erring experts that the war was going badly, was ready
to accept it. The next step was to present it at Geneva; then, with the League s
concurrence, to impose it on the Emperor o Abyssinia a beauti ul example,
repeated at Munich, o using the machinery o peace against the victim o
aggression. But something went wrong. Hardly had Hoare le t Paris on his way
to Geneva than the so-called Hoare-Laval plan appeared in the French press.
No one knows how this happened. Perhaps Laval doubted whether the National
government were solidly behind Hoare and there ore leaked the plan in order to
commit Baldwin and the rest beyond redemption. Perhaps Herriot, or some other
enemy o Laval s, revealed the plan in order to ruin it, believing that, i the League
were efective against Mussolini, it could then be turned against Hitler. Maybe
there was no design at all, merely the incorrigible zest o French journalists
At any rate the revelation produced an explosion in British public opinion. The
high-minded supporters o the league who had helped to return the National
government elt cheated and indignant Baldwin rst admitted that the plan
had been endorsed by the government; then repudiated both the plan and Sir
Samuel Hoare. Eden took Hoare s place as Foreign Secretary. The Hoare-Laval
plan disappeared. Otherwise nothing was changed. The British government
were still resolved not to risk war.

The results o the international response to the

Abyssinian crisis
The Hoare Laval pact sealed the fate of the League of Nations in 1 93 5 .
It had been exposed as a sham. The attention of B ritain and France was
drawn away from East Africa and closer to home when Hitler remilitarized
the Rhineland in March 1 936. France was prepared to let Mussolini
complete his conquest in return for his support against Hitler, and the
French would not support any further action regarding sanctions.

Source skills
Telegram from Haile S elassie to the League its efforts to secure respect for the covenant,
of Nations, 6 May 1 93 6. and that it should decide not to recognize
territorial extensions, or the exercise of an
We have decided to bring to an end the most
assumed sovereignty, resulting from the illegal
unequal, most unj ust, most barbarous war of
recourse to armed force and to numerous
our age, and have chosen the road to exile in
other violations of international agreements.
order that our people will not be exterminated
and in order to consecrate ourselves wholly First question, part a 3 marks
and in peace to the preservation of our
What, according to Haile Selassie, should the
empire s independence ... we now demand
League of Nation s do in response to Italian
that the League of Nations should continue
aggression in Abyssinia?

S elassie ed on 2 May, and the Abyssinian capital, Addis Ababa, ell to
Thinking and Italian orces. However, there was no o fcial surrender by Abyssinia and
social skills a guerrilla war continued against the Italians. S elassie made pleas or
Go to support rom the League and on 3 0 June, despite the jeering o Italian
watch?v=oyX2kXeFUlo, or j ournalists, he made a power ul speech criticizing the international
search for Emperor Haile community or its inaction. He moved or a resolution to deny
Selassie of Ethiopia addresses recognition o the Italian conquest. He concluded with the ominous and
League of Nations . prophetic statement, It is us today. It will be you .
Watch Haile Selassie s speech D espite Selassie s impassioned speech, his resolution ailed; on 4 July, the
at the League of Nations, League voted to end its sanctions, which were li ted on the 1 5 July. The
June 1936. new Italian Empire was recognized by Japan on 1 8 November 1 936
in return or recognition o its own occupation o Manchuria. In 1 93 8,
B ritain and France recognized Italian control o Abyssinia, although the
USA and USSR re used to recognise the Italian Empire.

Source skills
Source A raised the curtain on his A rican adventure
Article from the UK newsp ap er, The with a speech on Wednesday a ternoon
Guardian, 3 O ctober 1 93 5 . rom the balcony o his o fce in the Palazzo
Venezia, in Rome. A solemn hour is about
Mussolini s long- expected invasion o to break in the history o our atherland, he
Abyssinia began at dawn yesterday, with said. The wheel o ate had begun to turn and
thousands o young Italian in antrymen could not be stopped.
cheering as they crossed the border rom
E ritrea and began the heavy slog up the In Londo n, the B ritish cabinet held a two-
valleys. hour meeting on the crisis in the morning,
and in the a ternoon key ministers and
Italian bombing planes roared overhead, service chie s were called to D owning S treet.
striking frst at the border town o Adowa, It is being stressed that any action by B ritain
scene o Italy s humiliating de eat at the must be coordinated with France. B ut the
hands o the Abyssinians in 1 896. Two o French are saying they will not do anything
the bombers were reported to be piloted by to upset the accord they recently reached
Mussolini s sons, Vittorio, aged 1 9, and B runo, with Italy.
aged 1 8, while a third had his son-in- law,
C ount Galeazzo C iano, as pilot. Source B
Tonight the Italian orce, under General S p eech by S ir S amuel Hoare, B ritish
Emilio de B ono and numbering 1 00, 000 men, Foreign S ecretary, to the League at Geneva,
including Eritrean soldiers, is reported to be 1 1 S ep tember 1 93 5 .
advancing on a 40-mile ront and to be within I do not suppose that in the history o the
1 2 miles o Adowa. Another army, commanded Assembly there was ever a more di fcult
by General Graziani, is mounting a drive north moment or a speech O n behal o the
rom Italian Somaliland, but is reported to be government o the United Kingdom, I can
held up by rain-soaked tracks say that they will be second to none in their
The Abyssinian Ministry o Foreign A airs has intention to ulfll within the measure o their
telegraphed the League o Nations in Geneva, capacity, the obligations which the C ovenant
denouncing the Italian aggression as a breach lays upon them. The League stands, and
o the League C ovenant. The Abyssinians my country stands with it, or the collective
claim that the frst bombs on Adowa struck maintenance o the C ovenant, especially to all
a hospital bearing the Red C ross. Mussolini acts o unprovoked aggression.

C H A P T E R 2 . 6 : T H E I N T E R N AT I O N A L R E S P O N S E T O I T A L I A N A G G R E S S I O N ( 1 9 3 5 1 9 4 0 )

Source C Article 1 6 o the Covenant and o collective

E xtract from sp eech by Haile S elassie to the security? It is collective security: it is the very
League of Nations, June 1 93 6. existence o the League o Nations. It is the
value o promises made to small states that their
I, Haile Selassie, Emperor o Abyssinia, am here integrity and independence be respected and
today to claim that justice which is due to my ensured it is the principle o the equality o
people and the assistance promised to it eight states In a word, it is international morality
months ago when f ty nations asserted that that is at stake.
aggression had been committed in violation o
international treaties What real assistance First question, part a 3 marks
was given to Ethiopia by the f ty-two nations What key criticisms o the League s response to the
who had declared the Rome Government guilty Abyssinian Crisis are made in Source C?
o breach o the C ovenant and had undertaken
to prevent the triumph o the aggressor? Second question 4 marks
I noted with grie , but without surprise that With re erence to its origin, purpose and content,
three powers considered their undertakings assess the values and limitations o S ource B or
under the C ovenant as absolutely o no value historians studying the international reaction to
What, then, in practice, is the meaning o the Abyssinian crisis.

Without doubt, the international response to the Abyssinian crisis had a

pro ound e ect on European diplomacy. It had atally undermined the
Thinking and social skills
League o Nations as a credible body or dealing with aggressor states. It In pairs or small groups, read
also ended the S tresa Front. B oth France and B ritain believed a ter this Source A and discuss the key
con ict that appeasement was the only route they could take to avoid a points it makes. Discuss the
con ict with Hitler s Germany. Thus the crisis had shi ted the balance o reasons it gives for British
power to Germany s advantage. Mussolini would now move towards a hesitation. To what extent do
ull alliance with Hitler. you agree that France s position
held Britain back?
Source skills
A cartoon by D avid Low, p ublished on 4 O ctober 1 93 5 , Research and
The man who took the lid off .
communication skills
In pairs, research headlines and
press reports on the invasion
of Abyssinia from around
the world in October 1935.
Make sure you reference your
sources appropriately and
include a correctly formatted
works cited list.
Present your headlines and
press reports to the class
and assess whether there
was international consensus
against the Italian action.

First question, part b 2 marks

What is the message o the cartoon?

TOK How did the USA respond to the invasion of
In small groups explore a range of Abyssinia?
historians accounts on the Abyssinian President Roosevelt sent Mussolini a personal message on 1 8 August
Crisis. Discuss what distinguishes a 1 935. He stated that the US government and people believed that
better account from a more limited one. the ailure to arrive at a peace ul settlement in East A rica would be
Is it the range and quality of the sources a calamity and would lead to adverse e ects or all nations.
used in the account and the depth of However, the United States would not take any direct action, as
supporting evidence? Is it the time was made clear in a radio address by Secretary o State Hull on 6
and context it was written in? Is it the November 1 93 5 . In this broadcast, he said it was the USA s duty
language and expression used by the to remain aloo rom disputes and con icts with which it had no
historian? Does your group agree on direct concern.
which accounts are better?

Source skills
The S ecretary of S tate to the United peace, whereas a ter hostilities began our chie
S tates D elegation at Geneva, by telegram, obj ect is and will be to avoid being drawn into
Washington, O ctob er 1 7 1 93 5 , 6.00p m. the war
O ctober 1 5 , 8 p.m. It is important that, i First question b 3 marks
possible, daily newspaper rumors and reports
What key points are made in this source with
rom Europe about the attitude or policy o
regards to the US response to the Italian invasion
this Government toward some phase o the
o Abyssinia?
Italo- E thiopian controversy, and especially
reports that oreign governments or agencies Second question 4 marks
are j ust about to inquire o this Government With re erence to its origin, purpose and content,
whether it can or will cooperate with oreign assess the values and limitations o this source or
Governments or peace agencies in one way historians studying the international response to
or another, shall be minimized to the greatest the Italian invasion o Abyssinia.
possible extent Every leading o fcial abroad
knows that prior to the outbreak o the war
our chie purpose was to aid in preserving

The end of the appeasement of Mussolini s Italy

How did Britain and France respond to the Italian invasion
of Albania, 7 April 1939?
Britain, along with France, condemned the Italian invasion o Albania and,
as Italy had previously guaranteed the sovereignty o the B alkans, this
was a turning point or Chamberlain. He no longer trusted the dictators
and now went as ar as to guarantee Greek borders with British military
support. Churchill had urged a more direct response by sending in the
Royal Navy, but Chamberlain did not agree. Mussolini was, however,
surprised at the appeasers commitment to Greece.

C H A P T E R 2 . 6 : T H E I N T E R N AT I O N A L R E S P O N S E T O I T A L I A N A G G R E S S I O N ( 1 9 3 5 1 9 4 0 )

Thinking skills
G. Bruce Strang. On the Fiery March: Mussolini Prepares Axis aggression was eroding. Chamberlain wrote to
For War, page 247 (2003) . his sister, Mussolini has behaved like a snake and
Italian leaders were ignorant o the real British a cad. Chamberlain thought the invasion showed
reaction. Despite the comparatively muted protests, Mussolini s complete cynicism . The Prime Minister
the aggressive nature o Italian policy did provoke a had reached the conclusion that any chance o
response. The oreign policy committee decided on uture rapprochement with Italy has been blocked
10 and 11 April to issue a guarantee to Greece, and, by Mussolini just as Hitler has blocked any German
under intense French pressure, agreed to extend rapprochement . Mussolini s decision to invade
one to Romania, while making a concerted e ort to Albania may have brought potential gains in Italy s
bring Turkey into an eastern Mediterranean security strategic situation but at the cost o urther alienating
arrangement. Greece accepted its guarantee, although the Chamberlain cabinet and urthering the division
it re used in the rst instance to join in guaranteeing o Europe into two competing blocks. By the middle o
other countries independence. In Turkey, the Inonii April, British strategic intelligence listed Italy amongst
government cited constitutional di culties, and, Britain s likely enemies. British planners also shi ted
more seriously, concerns about its own security in the emphasis in war planning to concentrate the British
the absence o a British guarantee. Nevertheless, on feet in the eastern Mediterranean at the expense o
13 April both Chamberlain and Daladier issued public the commitment to the Far East, a clear signal that
statements in their respective parliamentary chambers resistance to Axis aggression had assumed a higher
guaranteeing Greece and Romania against aggression. priority a ter Mussolini s attack.
Although the issuing o guarantees would in the end Question
be signi cantly less than an ironclad, interlocking
In pairs, and with re erence to the source above, discuss
security system against Axis aggression, it did signal
the extent to which the invasion o Albania in 1939
that the patience o the Western democracies with
marked a turning point in British policy towards Italy.

What was the reaction o Britain to Italian expansion in 1940?

As you have read in C hapter 2 .3 , when Italy j oined the war in June
1 940 Mussolini s orces invaded Egypt and invaded Greece rom Albania.
The B ritish then counter- attacked Italian orces in North A rica in
Operation C ompass and pushed them out o Egypt, de eating them at
B eda Fomm in Libya in February 1 941 . The B ritish Navy, which had
been eared by the Italian navy ( as you have read earlier) , had sunk hal
the Italian feet in harbour at Taranto on the 1 1 th November, 1 940. The
B ritish then occupied C rete.

Communication and thinking skills

From Andrew Roberts. The Storm of War: A new History of against a orce our times his size, concentrating on
the Second World War, (2009) page 120 121. each orti ed area in turn. Operation Compass had
In mid-September Mussolini, ancying himsel a second close support rom the Navy and RAF, and, aided
Caesar, sent [his] Tenth Army to invade Egypt with by a collapse in Italian morale, by mid-December
ve divisions along the coast, taking Sidi Barraini. He O Connor had cleared Egypt o Italians and 38,000
stopped 75 miles short o the British in Mersa Matruh, prisoners were taken.
while both sides were rein orced. It was a nerve-wracking Question
time or the British in Egypt On 8th December 1940,
In pairs discuss what this source suggests about how
Lieutenant-General Richard O Connor, commander o the
the Italians were pushed back in North A rica in 1940.
Western Desert Force [numbering only 31,000 men, 120
guns and 275 tanks] , counter-attacked ercely

There ore, the initial military response by the B ritish led to reversals
or the Italians. However, the B ritish were in turn pushed back when
German orces arrived. The B ritish evacuated Greece in May 1 941
and had been pushed back by German orces to El Alamein in E gypt by
June 1 942 .

Full document question: The international response to Italian aggression, 1935 36

Source A Source C
E xtract from the C ovenant of the League of S ir Samuel Hoare s resignation speech,
Nations, 1 91 9. delivered in the House of Commons in
London, 19 December 1935 .
Article 1 6 S hould any member o the League
resort to war in disregard o its covenants It was clear that Italy would regard the
under Articles 1 2 , 1 3 or 1 5 , it shall be deemed oil embargo as a military sanction or an act
to have committed an act o war against all involving war against her. Let me make
other members o the League, which hereby our p osition quite clear. We had no ear
undertake immediately to subj ect it to the whatever, as a nation, o any Italian threats.
severance o all trade or fnancial relations, I the Italians attacked us we sho uld
the prohibition o all exchange between their retaliate with ull success. What was in our
nationals and the nationals o the covenant- mind was something very di erent, that an
breaking state, and the prevention o all isolated attack o this kind launched upon
fnancial, commercial or personal business one Po wer would almost inevitably lead to
between the nationals o covenant- breaking the dissolution o the League.
state and the nationals o any other state,
It was in an atmosphere o threatened
whether a member o the League or not.
war that the conversations began, and the
It shall be the duty o the C ouncil in totality o the member States appeared to be
such cases to reco mmend to the several opposed to military action.
governments concerned what e ective
[It] seemed to me that Anglo- French
military, naval or air orce the members o
co- operatio n was essential i there was to
the League shall contribute to the armed
be no breach at Geneva. Fo r two days M.
orces to be used to protect the covenants o
Laval and I discussed the basis o a possible
the League.
Source B These proposals are immensely less
A p hotograp h of US p rotesters, 1 93 6. avourable to Italy than the demand that
Mussolini made last summer.
I believe that unless these acts are
aced either the League will break up,
or a most unsatis actory p eace will result
ro m the con ict that is now taking place.
It is a choice between the ull co- ope ratio n
o all the member S tates and the kind
o unsatis actory compromise that was
contemplated in the suggestions which
M. Laval and I put up.
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Source D amongst other weapons, and proclaim the

Ruth Henig, a B ritish academic historian, in Italian conquest o a League member state.
an academic b ook The Origins of the Second The League o Nations had su ered its second
World War (1 985 ) . serious setback in fve years, and this time
had ailed to prevent aggression much nearer
The bargain they tentatively struck was to E urope.
immediately leaked in the French press, and
reports o the Hoare- Laval pact caused an Once again, the great powers had shown their
uproar in B ritain. The government was orced inability to work together to resolve serious
to repudiate Hoare s negotiations in Paris, threats to peace or to protect the interests o
and Hoare himsel resigned, to be replaced by weaker League members. These lessons were
Anthony E den, who was perceived as a strong not lost on Hitler.
League supporter. The B ritish government First question, part a 3 marks
now led the way at Geneva in calling or
In Source A, what key points are made about the
economic sanctions against Mussolini, and
League regarding its response to a member state
dragged a reluctant French go vernment
resorting to war?
behind it. B ut the French would not support
oil sanctions, whilst the B ritish were reluctant First question, part b 2 marks
to agree to the closure o the Suez C anal,
What is the message o the photograph in Source B ?
both measures which would have caused
maj or problems or the Italian war e ort. Second question 4 marks
The French had not abandoned hopes o With re erence to its origin, purpose and content,
restoring the S tresa ront, and the B ritish did assess the values and limitations o S ource C or
not want to run a serious risk o unleashing historians studying the international response to
a naval war in the Mediterranean even the Abyssinian crisis.
though B ritish naval commanders there were
confdent that the outcome would be a B ritish Third question 6 marks
victory. For such a war would threaten vital C ompare and contrast the views expressed in
imperial communications, and Japan would Source C and D regarding the Hoare Laval Pact.
not be slow to exploit the situation to urther
its own expansionist ambitions in C hina. S o Fourth question 9 marks
League action was muted, with the result that Using the sources and your own knowledge,
Italian troops were able to overrun Abyssinia, examine the impact o the Anglo French response
crush resistance by the use o poiso n gas to the Abyssinian crisis.
Fermi, L. 1 96 6. Mussolini. University o C hicago Press. C hicago, US A
Henig R. 1 985 . The Origins of the Second World War. Routledge. London, UK
Roberts, A. 2 009. The Storm of War: A New History of the Second World War.
Allen Lane, UK.
S trang, GB . 2 003 . On the Fiery March: Mussolini Prepares for War. Praeger.
Westport C T, US A
Taylor, AJP. 1 961 . The Origins of the Second World War. Penguin.
Harmondsworth, UK
US D epartment o State. 1 943. Peace and War: United States Foreign Policy,
1 931 1 941 . Government Printing O fce. Washington D C, USA
Warner, G. 1 968 . Pierre Laval and the Eclipse of France. Eyre and
S pottiswoode. London, UK
The international reaction to the actions o
Germany, 1 93 5 3 9, has been the subj ect o
much criticism and debate amongst historians.
A cartoon by David Low, What s Czechoslovakia to me, anyway?
As you read this next section, consider the
18 July 1938
options available to B ritain and France at each
stage o German expansion, and the extent to which the decisions that
B ritain and France took encouraged German aggression.

What was the international reaction to German rearmament?

As we have seen, there was sympathy in B ritain towards Germany s
desire to reverse certain aspects o the Treaty o Versailles. Following
Germany s withdrawal rom the D isarmament C on erence and the
League o Nations in 1 93 3 ( see page 1 5 7) , B ritain worked hard to get
Germany back into the con erence. It proposed that Germany should be
allowed to have an army o 2 00, 000 (rather than the 1 00,000 stipulated
in the Treaty o Versailles) , that France should also reduce its army to
2 00, 000, and that Germany should be allowed an air orce hal the size o
the French air orce.
However, the realization in 1 93 5 that Germany was introducing
conscription and already had an air orce ended attempts by the B ritish
and French to bring Germany back into the League o Nations and to
establish new conditions or rearmament. Germany s actions blatantly
contravened the terms o the Treaty o Versailles. This was obviously
a concern to the other powers, who could see that Germany was now
catching up militarily. German military expenditure increased rom
2 .7 billion marks in 1 93 3 to 8 billion marks in 1 93 5 ; while this was
still a relatively low proportion o the gross national product ( GNP) , it
was nonetheless a worry to B ritain and France. It was clear that such
rearmament would strengthen German demands or urther treaty
modifcations and that, indeed, Germany would be able to achieve these
by orce i it could not get them by peace ul means.
In respo nse to Ge rman rearmament, and ollowing Hitler s
threatening mo ves o ver Austria in 1 9 3 4, a con erence was held at
S tresa in Italy, and was attended by the p rime ministers and oreign
ministers o France, B ritain and Italy. The ministers dre w up a ormal
pro test at Hitler s disregard o the Versaille s provisio ns regarding
disarmament, and they rea rmed their co mmitment to Locarno and
to Austrian indep ende nce.
This collective action, as you have read in C hapter 2 . 3 , was known as
the Stresa Front, and it could have acted as a deterrent to Hitler s plans.
However, three developments now took place that undermined this
united ront.
First, France concluded the Franco Soviet Mutual Assistance Treaty
with Russia, in 1 93 5 . This coincided with Russia s entry into the
League o Nations; with Poland in a pact with Germany (see page 1 5 9) ,
it was important to keep Russia on side. However, Italy was unwilling
to conclude any pact with a communist government. B ritain was
also worried about using a communist country to contain Germany
and opposed France s idea o surrounding Germany with alliances,
believing that this would lead to Germany eeling encircled.
The second development was initiated by B ritain and it o ended
both the French and Italian governments. B ritain was unwilling to
enter a naval race with Germany at a time when its naval strength
was already stretched to capacity; there was also a concern that
Japan might want to renego tiate the terms o the naval treaties o
Washington and London ( see page 2 2 ) . This made it tempting to
resp ond to Hitler s o ers to limit the German feet to 3 5 % o the
B ritish feet, which in act gave the opportunity or the German
navy to triple its size. O n 1 8 June, this percentage was agreed in
the Anglo German Naval Agreement. The agreement also allo wed a
German submarine feet equal to B ritain s. The Versailles restrictions
on the German navy had thus been completely set aside.
Ruth Henig summarises the e ect o this treaty in S ource A below.

Source skills
Source A eld o arms limitation. B ut they had, in the
Ruth Henig. The Origins of the Second World process, condoned German violation o the
War (1 985 ) . Treaty o Versailles by agreeing to a German
navy considerably in excess o that stipulated
While such an agreement may have been by the treaty, and they had not attempted to
militarily desirable rom a B ritish point secure the prior agreement o the other major
o view, it was politically inept. It drove a signatories, France and Italy. What was now
wedge between B ritain on the one hand to stop Hitler repudiating other provisions
and the French and Italians on the other, at o the treaty, orti ed by the knowledge that
a time when it was vitally important or the the B ritish government was, i not tacitly
three powers to work together. The B ritish supporting him, most unlikely to o er
government could claim that it was possible strenuous opposition?
to do business with Nazi Germany in the
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Source B
A cartoon by D avid Low, 2 4 June 1 93 5 (with added annotations) , dep icting French p rime
minister Pierre Laval, Italian p rime m inister B enito Mussolini and B ritish p rime minister
Ramsay MacD onald in a boat labelled Collective isolation . The text reads 3 wise men of Stresa
went to sea in a Barrel. If the Barrel had been stronger, my story would have been longer.
The Anglo-German Naval
Agreement Mussolini furious

watching: Rough
also a seas
reference indicating
to the tricky
terms of international
the Anglo- situation
naval Treaty?

Collective The Stresa boat

isolation totally inadequate for
opposite of the rough seas
collective security

First question, part a 3 marks First question, part b 2 marks

According to Source A what were the key What is the message o the cartoon in Source B ?
limitations o the Anglo German Naval agreement?

The third development which undermined the Stresa Front was

E xaminer s hint: Use the
Mussolini s invasion o Abyssinia in October 1 93 5 . In act, this le t
annotations on the cartoon to
the S tresa Front in ruins. A ter this, Hitler was able to pursue his
help you write your answer.
aims with greater confdence.
Here is a starting sentence:

What was the international reaction to the remilitarization The overall message of this
cartoon is that the Stresa
of the Rhineland? Front is weak and unlikely
When Hitler marched into the Rhineland in 1 93 6, violating both the to last long. This is shown
Treaty o Versailles and the Locarno Treaties, he aced no opposition by the fact that (use the
rom either B ritain or France. details of the cartoon to back
up your points)

The French government at the time was only a caretaker government
and thus was not in a position to consider war. The divisions in French
society made a clear response impossible and neither le t nor right
wanted to propose a war against Germany with orthcoming elections.
In addition, the general sta o the French army had exaggerated the
number o German orces marching into the Rhineland, putting them at
2 65 ,000 when in act there were only 3 0, 000. To deal with an invasion
o such supposed size, the French would have to mobilize its army and
General Gamelin, the C hie o Sta , told French ministers that this would
lead to a long, drawn-out war or which there was little support in France.
The French thus looked to B ritain or a response, but Prime Minister
S tanley B aldwin s government made it clear that they, too, were
unwilling to contemplate war over the Rhineland. O ne reason or this
was B ritain s overstretched military commitments, and in 1 93 6 the
C hie o the Imperial General S ta made it clear that the armed orces
were not in any position to fght a success ul war against Germany
( see page 1 68) .
Signifcantly, the B ritish also did not see Hitler s action as particularly
threatening. As the B ritish politician Lord Lothian put it, The Germans
are only going into their own back garden . Hitler o course, had also
o ered negotiations at the same time as invading ( see page 1 63 ) , a move
that historian William Craig calls a diplomatic smokescreen ; this made
it easier to aim or a settlement rather than to con ront Hitler directly.
Foreign Minister Anthony E den wrote:
It seems undesirable to adopt an attitude where we would either have to
fght or the [demilitarized] zone or abandon it in the ace o a German
reoccupation. It would be pre erable or Great Britain and France to enter
into negotiations or the surrender on conditions o our rights in the zone,
while such a surrender still has got a bargaining value. Eden, 1 93 6
The ailure to stop Hitler at this point, especially given that his troops
had instructions to turn back i con ronted, is o ten seen as a turning
point: the last chance to stop Hitler without war. Harold Macmillan, a
C onservative politician, wrote in the Star newspaper, There will be no
war now. But unless a settlement is made now a settlement that can only be
made by a vigorous lead rom this country there will be war in 1 940 or 1 941 .
However, at the time, this was the view only o a minority. The reality
is that it would have been hard or the B ritish government to act given
that political and public opinion were frmly in avour o peace and o
negotiating with Germany.

Source skills
A.J.P. Taylor. The Origins of the Second World French had a great army, and the Germans
War (1 964) . had none. Psychologically it was the reverse
o the truth The French army could march
It was said at the time, and has o ten been said
into Germany; it could extract promises o
since, that 7 March 1 936 was the last chance
good behaviour rom the Germans, and then
when Germany could have been stopped
it would go away. The situation would remain
without all the sacrifce and su ering o a great
the same as be ore, or, i anything, worse
war. Technically, on paper, this was true: the
C H A P T E R 2 . 7 : T H E I N T E R N AT I O N A L R E S P O N S E T O G E R M A N A G G R E S S I O N , 1 9 3 3 1 9 4 0

the Germans more resent ul and restless than point. It opened the door or Germany s success.
ever. There was in act no sense in opposing It also opened the door or her ultimate ailure.
Germany until there was something solid to
oppose, until the settlement o Versailles was First question, part a 3 marks
undone and Germany rearmed. Only a country According to Taylor, why was opposing Germany
which aims at victory can be threatened with in the Rhineland a good idea.
de eat. 7 March was thus a double turning

The international reaction to the Spanish Civil War:

The Non-Intervention Committee
In France, a Popular Party government with similar views to the
republican government in S pain was elected in June 1 93 6. The new
prime minister, Leon B lum, wanted to support the S panish government;
it was not in French interests to have on its border a right- wing regime
that could j oin with Italy and Germany to encircle France. However,
B lum eared opposition i he directly intervened and knew that B ritain
was unlikely to support such a move. He there ore came up with the
idea o non- intervention, whereby all o the European countries would
commit to keeping out o the confict.
B aldwin s government in B ritain wanted to prevent the S panish C ivil
War becoming a wider confict and so agreed with the French plan.
However, B ritish motives were di erent rom those o the French.
B aldwin s largely C onservative government believed that the nationalists
would probably win the war and so did not want to make an enemy
o the S panish nationalist leader, General Franco. In addition, the
B ritish government did not want to upset Mussolini. It also viewed the
Republican government as communist ( an impression rein orced by
the act that it received aid rom the S oviet Union) . There were many
B ritish business interests in S pain, and investors believed that they
aced nancial risks i Franco lost resulting in a socialist or communist
government in S pain. They also supported Franco s tough anti- union
A total o 1 6 countries signed the Non- Intervention Pact. However,
three o the key members o the Non- Intervention C ommittee ( NIC )
Germany, Italy and the Soviet Union ignored the NIC commitment TOK
completely and, as we have seen, sent substantial aid into Spain. In small groups investigate a
In addition, B ritain s policy o non- intervention avoured the nationalists: current civil war or confict and
nd out how the international
It ocused on preventing aid to the Republic and allowed the
community has responded.
Nationalists, rather than the Republicans, to use Gibraltar as a
How does your understanding
communications base.
o the international response
In D ecember 1 93 6, B ritain signed a trading agreement with the to the Spanish Civil war in the
Nationalists that allowed B ritish companies to trade with the rebels. 1930s help you to make sense
o the complexity o responding
Franco, not the S panish republicans, was able to get credit rom
to civil conficts today?
B ritish banks.

The policy o non- intervention thus played a key role in allowing Franco
to win the civil war in Spain. Non- intervention worked against the
Republicans, while Hitler and Mussolini continued to give e ective aid
to the Nationalists.
The ailure o non- intervention urther discredited the appeasement
policies o B ritain and France. Hitler had ignored non- intervention,
which was also the policy o the League o Nations, and had success ully
helped a right- wing government to power. The Western democracies
thus appeared weak to Hitler, and this encouraged him urther in his

What was the international response to ?

With Anchluss in May 1 93 8, Hitler had again violated the Treaty o
Versailles which specifcally orbade the union o Germany and Austria.
He invaded an independent state and was in a stronger position to attack
C zechoslovakia. Yet, apart rom B ritish and French protests to B erlin,
there was limited international response. Why was this?
France was paralysed by an internal political crisis and did not even
have a government at the time o Anschluss. Ministers threatened to
call up reservists to strengthen France s army but needed B ritain s
support, which was not orthcoming.
Italy was now increasingly dependent on German riendship and
re used to respond to C hancellor S chuschnigg s appeals or help.
The League o Nations was discredited a ter the Abyssinian a air and
Anschluss was not even re erred to the League or discussion.
In B ritain, there was a eeling that Germany s union with Austria
was inevitable. C hamberlain made a statement in the House o
C ommons in which he condemned Germany s actions and the way
in which Anschluss had taken place, but also stated, the hard fact is
that nothing could have arrested this action by Germany unless we and others
with us had been prepared to use force to prevent it .

Source skills
Source A speak up now or S chuschnigg. Even the
D avid Faber. , (2008). Archbishop o C anterbury appealed to the
House o Lords or calmness and balance
O n 1 4 March The Times newspaper told its o j udgement . The union o Germany and
readers that our correspondent leaves no Austria sooner or later was inevitable he
room or doubt about the public j ubilation told his ellow peers, and fnally, may bring
with which [Hitler] and his army were greeted some stability to E urope . At the Foreign
everywhere . The Labour Party, recalling the O fce too, the general eeling was one
brutality o D oll uss a ew years earlier against o relie .
Austrian socialists, had little inclination to

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Source B
A cartoon by D avid Low, Not only the Austrians voted , p ublished in the UK newsp ap er,
the Evening Standard, on 1 2 Ap ril 193 8.

First question, part a 3 marks First question, part b 2 marks

According to S ource A, what actors infuenced What is the message o S ource B concerning
B ritain s attitude towards Anschluss? Anschluss?

What was the international reaction to German aggression E xaminer s hint: Don t
in Czechoslovakia? forget to use the details of the
cartoon to support your two
France s reaction points. Start by annotating it in
Following Anschluss, it was clear to B ritain and France that the same way as we annotated
C zechoslovakia would be the ocus o Hitler s next oreign policy moves. the cartoon on page 21 5. Make
France had two treaties with C zechoslovakia, signed in 1 92 4 and 1 92 5 , sure you look at the title to give
which committed France to assisting C zechoslovakia in the event o you a hint as to the meaning of
a threat to their common interests. However, the French also saw the cartoon.
that they were in no position to keep to these treaty obligations. They
argued that C zechoslovakia could not be de ended, and French Prime
Minister D aladier and Foreign Minister B onnet were only too happy
to ollow B ritain s lead in nding a way out o a military showdown
with Germany.

Britain s reaction
Many B ritish politicians had sympathy with C zechoslovakia, as it had
survived as a democracy or a longer period than the other new states
in central and eastern E urope. However, C hamberlain did not believe
that C zechoslovakia was worth ghting or. He saw C zechoslovakia as
a highly arti cial creation and one that was ultimately unsustainable.
He had some sympathy with the S udeten Germans and believed that he
could organize a peace ul and negotiated handover o the Sudetenland
to Germany.
In any case, B ritain was not in a position to o er military help to
C zechoslovakia. C hamberlain wrote in his diary that,
We could not help Czechoslovakia she would simply be a pretext for
going to war with Germany I have therefore abandoned the idea of
giving guarantees to Czechoslovakia, or the French in connection with her
obligations to that country.
Given their determination to avoid a confict over C zechoslovakia,
B ritain and France worked hard to nd a diplomatic solution.
Following Hitler s speech o 1 2 S eptember 1 93 8 at the Nuremberg Rally
( see page 1 76) , C hamberlain decided to seize the initiative and to fy
to meet Hitler in Germany. This was a radical move in the world o
diplomacy, as at this time prime ministers did not fy abroad to meet
other leaders one to one. This was the rst time that C hamberlain had
fown; as historian D avid Reynolds has pointed out, it also marked the
rst o the 2 0th century summits between world leaders.
At the meeting, Hitle r demanded that all areas o C zechoslo vakia in
which Germans comprised over 5 0 % o the p opulation sho uld j o in
Ge rmany. This wo uld be sup ervised by an internatio nal commissio n.
C hamberlain agreed, but said that he wo uld have to get the
agreeme nt o the C zechs and the French rst. C hamberlain p rivately
re marked that,
In spite of the hardness and ruthlessness I thought I saw in his face, I got the
impression that here was a man who could be relied upon when he had given
his word.
O ver the ollowing week, C hamberlain was able to get agreement
or this deal rom the B ritish C abinet and the French government,
despite the act that this would mean ignoring their alliance with
C zechoslovakia. The C zechoslovakian government, led by President
Edvard B ene , was told that, i these proposals were rej ected, the C zechs
would have to ace Germany on their own. C zechoslovakia accepted the
plan on 2 1 S eptember 1 93 8.
O n 2 2 September, C hamberlain few back to Germany, expecting to have
a discussion at B ad Godesberg about the proposals that had previously
been discussed and were now agreed upon. However, Hitler now said
that the previous proposals did not go ar enough. He wanted the claims
o Hungary and Poland to C zech territory met and he wanted to occupy
the Sudetenland no later than 1 October.
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B ack in B ritain, many of C hamberlain s colleagues rej ected the

Godesberg proposals. France now said it would honour its commitments
to C zechoslovakia; the C zechs said that the new proposals were
unacceptable. All countries started preparing for war. In B ritain, trenches
were dug in London s parks and 3 8 million gas masks were distributed.
On 2 7 September, C hamberlain made the following radio broadcast:

How horrible, antastic and incredible it is that we should be digging

trenches and trying on gas-masks because o a quarrel in a ar-away country
between people o whom we know nothing. I would not hesitate to pay even
a third visit to Germany i I thought it would do any good.
Armed confict between nations is a nightmare to me; but i I were convinced
that any nation had made up its mind to dominate the world by ear o its
orce, I should eel it must be resisted. Under such a domination, li e or
people who believe in liberty would not be worth living, but war is a terrible
thing, and we must be very clear, be ore we embark on it, that it is really the
great issues that are at stake.

Thinking and
Communication skills
Task one
In what way does the cartoonist Low in the cartoon at the start o this chapter
disagree with Chamberlain?
Task two
Go to
Watch Chamberlain s broadcast on this Path News clip. What is the British attitude
towards Chamberlain as shown in the clip?
Go to, or search or Peace in our time?
(1938 Munich Crisis) Part 2 o 11 .
Watch part o the video Peace in our Time? What point is the narrator making
about Czechoslovakia and the British attitude towards Czechoslovakia?
How use ul is this documentary or a historian investigating the Munich Crisis?
Task three
Go to, or search or Hitler and
Chamberlain: The Munich Crisis 1938 .
Watch this documentary by historian David Reynolds on the Munich Con erence.
How does this compare to the documentary Peace in our Time? in terms o
presentation and content? (You will need to watch the rest o Peace in our Time?
to answer this question.)

Hitler agreed to a third con erence, which was to be chaired by Mussolini.
TOK As you can see in the Path News clip below, this last hope or peace
Investigate primary sources was greeted with much enthusiasm in B ritain. Neither the C zech
responding to the Munich president, Edvard B ene , nor the Soviet leader, S talin, was invited to
Agreement rom around the the con erence, which agreed to give the Sudetenland to Germany (see
world in September 1938. page 1 78 or ull details o the Munich Agreement) . For C hamberlain,
Share the key points made in however, the highlight o the con erence, was securing rom Hitler
each source in small groups. a j oint declaration that B ritain and Germany would only deal with
Highlight the language used in problems through negotiation and would not attempt to use orce. For
the sources and identi y where C hamberlain, this meant peace in our time ( though this was a phrase
there may be bias. Discuss that he later said he regretted using) .
whether the meaning o the
words and expressions used Communication
in 1938 has changed over skills
time. Consider the ollowing
question: I language changes Go to, or search Neville Chamberlain
in meaning, what efect might returns rom Germany with the Munich Agreement .
this have on our understanding Watch the Path News clip showing Chamberlain returning to Britain.
o the past? Can we really What exactly has Hitler agreed to according to the signed declaration?
understand the past through
primary sources? What in ormation concerning the agreement is given in this clip?

There was much relie in B ritain that war had been averted. The B ritish
press mostly supported C hamberlain s policy and C hamberlain had
support rom the majority o his party. However, even at the time,
there was criticism o the agreement. Winston C hurchill called B ritish
policy a total and unmitigated disaster , and D u C ooper, First Lord o
the Admiralty, resigned rom the government. The Labour and Liberal
Parties both opposed the agreement. C lement Attlee, leader o the
Labour Party, said:
We have been unable to go in for carefree rejoicing. We have felt that we
are in the midst of a tragedy. We have felt humiliation. This has not been
a victory for reason and humanity. It has been a victory for brute force
We have today seen a gallant, civilised and democratic people betrayed and
handed over to a ruthless despotism.

Class discussion
In pairs, discuss the extent to which you agree with the historian Richard Overy s
appraisal o the Munich Agreement that it represented a realistic assessment of
the balance between Western interests and Western capabilities (Overy, 2008) .

The invasion o Czechoslovakia: The end o appeasement

Hitler s takeover o the rest o C zechoslovakia in March 1 93 9, caused
great shock and outrage in B ritain. It was now clear that Hitler s aims
were not limited; he had broken a signed agreement and his invasion
o C zechoslovakia could not be j ustifed by any claim to be uniting
Germans. There was a shi t o opinion in B ritain, and C hamberlain was
put under pressure to take a frmer stand against Hitler.
He made his new stance clear in a speech on 1 7 March 1 93 9:

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Is this the last attack upon a small state or is it to be ollowed by others? Is

Communication skills
this, in e ect, a step in the direction o an attempt to dominate the world
by orce? . .. While I am not prepared to engage this country in new and What does Chamberlain s
unspecifed commitments operating under conditions which cannot now be speech reveal about his change
oreseen, yet no greater mistake could be made than to suppose that because in policy towards Hitler?
it believes war to be a senseless and cruel thing, this nation has so lost its
fbre that it will not take part to the utmost o its power in resisting such a
challenge i it were ever made.

What was the international reaction to Hitler s demands

regarding Poland?
Given Hitler s actions over Memel, and German demands over D anzig,
on 3 1 March 1 93 9, B ritain o ered a guarantee to Poland which said
that, i it was the victim o an unprovoked attack, B ritain would come to
its aid. France gave a similar assurances.
These guarantees were controversial. Poland was a right- wing military
dictatorship and anti- S emitic; it had also accepted Japanese and Italian
expansion, and had taken territory rom C zechoslovakia as part o the
Munich Agreement. Moreover, actually sending military aid to Poland
would be even more di fcult than acting to support C zechoslovakia.
Nevertheless, B ritain s guarantee to Poland did act as a warning to Hitler,
and it did allow B ritain to eel that it was taking more direct action
against Hitler to deter urther aggression. In act, C hamberlain still
believed that he could use diplomacy to get Hitler to negotiate.
When Mussolini invaded Albania on 7 April, B ritain and France also
gave guarantees to Greece and Romania. In May, B ritain urther
strengthened its position in the Eastern Mediterranean by negotiating
an agreement with Turkey or mutual assistance in case o war in the
Mediterranean area.
Meanwhile, both B ritain and France stepped up military preparations.
The Pact o S teel confrmed that Italy could not now be detached rom
Germany and this strengthened military collaboration between the two
countries. In March, the B ritish government announced that it was
doubling the territorial army, and in April conscription was introduced.
In act, by 1 93 9, it was clear that B ritain and France were in a much
stronger military position than they had been in 1 93 8, and this act, too,
allowed them to take a frmer stand against Hitler. In B ritain, air de ence
and the introduction o radar was near completion. The rearmament
programme was also set to reach a peak in 1 93 9 40, by which time it
was estimated that B ritain would, militarily, be on roughly equal terms
with Germany.

Negotiations with the Soviet Union

I B ritain and France were to be able to assist Poland in the event o
a German attack, then help rom the Soviet Union would be key. The
French were more enthusiastic about this than the B ritish as they had

a long tradition o Franco Soviet/Russian cooperation. Many B ritish
politicians on the le t also elt that such an alliance had to be established
quickly; however, there was still a reluctance on the part o the B ritish
government to ollow this line o action. It had ignored the S oviet
Union s approaches during the Austrian and S udeten crises, and S talin
had not even been invited to the Munich C on erence.
Even in 1 939, C hamberlain was unenthusiastic about an alliance with the
Soviets, con essing to the most profound distrust of Russia . There were also
other, more practical, reasons to be concerned about such an alliance:
The Soviet army was militarily weak a ter Stalin s purges.
An alliance could alienate other Eastern European countries that
B ritain hoped to win over to orm a diplomatic ront against Germany.
I Germany elt hemmed- in this could actually push it towards war.
An alliance might push Poland, where Stalin was also distrusted, and
Spain into an alliance with Hitler.
In April 1 93 9, despite these misgivings, C hamberlain fnally bowed to
pressure and agreed to start negotiations. However, the expectations
o what should be included in such an agreement were di erent or
the S oviets on the one hand, and the French and B ritish on the other.
B ritain and France j ust wanted the Soviets to join in the guarantees to
Poland, but the Soviets proposed instead a mutual assistance treaty by
which B ritain, France and Russia would all come to one another s aid in
the event o an attack. This was to prevent the Soviet Union being le t to
deal with Germany in the E ast alone.
In addition, S talin demanded that the S oviet Union should have the right
to intervene militarily in neighbouring states i they were threatened
internally by local ascist orces. This was rej ected outright by the B ritish
and French, who saw this as an excuse to inter ere with, or even take
over, other countries. There were other reasons or the ailure o the
negotiations as explained by historian Richard Overy in S ource A, below.

Source skills
Source A S oviet negotiators, all top military and political
Richard O very. Origins of the Second World War fgures, ound that the B ritish had sent a
(2 008) . j unior representative, who had no powers to
negotiate and sign an agreement. This slight
Talks continued throughout the summer, deeply o ended S oviet leaders. It was soon
though both sides complained endlessly about discovered that the western delegations had
the obduracy and deviousness o the other. In no real plans or the military alliance, and had
August the Soviet side insisted on ull military not even secured agreement or the passage
discussions be ore any more progress could be o Soviet orces across Poland to fght the
made. Again the west showed what Molotov German army. The discussions, which had
later condemned as a dilatory attitude. The begun on 1 2 August 1 93 9, broke up a ter
B ritish delegation was sent on a long trip three days and were not revived.
by sea instead o by air. When it arrived the
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Source B
A cartoon by D avid Low, p ublished in the UK newsp ap er the Daily Mail, 5 Ap ril 1 93 9.

First question, part a 3 marks First question, part b 2 marks

What, according to Source A, were the reasons What is the message of S ource B ?
for the failure of the Anglo-S oviet talks?

Self-management and communication skills

Review the relationships between the Soviet Union and the Western democracies
and Germany between 1933 and 1939. Re er back to the discussion o the reasons
or the Nazi Soviet Pact (see page 224; also pages 183 184).
Make notes under the ollowing headings:
the view o the British and French concerning an agreement with the
Soviet Union
the view o the Soviets on an agreement with the Western democracies
the view o Germany on an agreement with the Soviet Union
the view o the Soviets on an agreement with Germany.
Imagine that you are advising Stalin on whether to make an agreement with either
Britain and France or with Germany. You have used your imagination
in the task here as an adviser
Prepare a presentation to Stalin on the advantages and disadvantages o each to Stalin. How do historians use
course o action. Make sure you give evidence to support your points. their imagination when writing
What is your fnal advice on the course o action that Stalin should take? their accounts?

The international reaction to the invasion o Poland: The
outbreak o war
C hamberlain continued to hope or a negotiated settlement but, as you
have read in C hapter 2 .6, last- minute attempts at diplomacy ailed.
Hitler invaded Poland on 1 S eptember 1 93 9. O n 3 S eptember, at 9.00am,
C hamberlain issued an ultimatum to Germany. Germany did not reply
and so war was declared at 1 1 .00am that same day.

Go to, or search Neville Chamberlain -
Britain s declaration o war 1939 .
Watch Chamberlain s broadcast to the British that war has been declared. What
emotions is Chamberlain attempting to rouse in his speech?

Source skills
Richard O very. Origins of the Second World War reason be ore it did the late summer o
(2 008) . 1 939 was a good time to declare it. This was
particularly so given the nature o the Allied
[Hitler ailed] to see that the western powers
strategy o blockade and economic war are,
had reached their limit in 1 93 9. Hitler was
which could be made to bite across the winter
right to judge that Poland was not in itsel o
months when Hitler would be unable to mount
much intrinsic interest in British and French
a major land o ensive. The only incalculable
calculations, but he ailed to see that both
element was the possibility o German bomb
powers assessed the Polish crisis not on its own
attacks in an e ort to achieve the knock-out
merits, but in terms o their global interests and
blow dreamed o by air theorists. Great e orts
great-power status. To fght or Poland was a
were made over the summer to complete the
means to assert B ritish and French power in the
necessary civil de ence preparations, to arrange
B alkans, the Mediterranean and the Far East
the evacuation o women and children, and to
as well. Given avourable Allied intelligence
prepare or gas attack.
on the military balance, and the threat o
severe economic crisis i war preparations First question, part a 3 marks
were continued at such a high level into the
According to this source, why was S eptember
uture, the Polish crisis was viewed as an
1 93 9 an opportune time or B ritain and France to
unrepeatable opportunity to challenge German
make a stand against Germany?
expansionism. I war had to come and the
Allies ervently hoped that Hitler would see

Research skills
Research the response o the international press to Hitler s invasion o Poland.
Can you nd headlines and articles about this act o aggression that are:
Communication skills
I possible, try to nd newspapers rom diferent regions and countries, and rom
Present your ndings to diferent political backgrounds. You should spend no more than two hours on this
the class in a 5 10-minute task. Make sure your sources are appropriately re erenced and that you make a
presentation. list o works cited.

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What were the reactions of Britain and France to Hitler s

actions, 1939 1940?
Despite the British and French promises o aid to Poland, they could o er
no help to Poland against the Nazi onslaught which began in September.
During the phoney war , B ritain prepared or the inevitable air attack. It
also debated whether it should send aid to Finland which had been invaded
by the Soviet Union. However, just as an Allied orce was about to move,
Finland capitulated. The Allies then decided to lay mines in Norwegian
territorial waters in order to block Swedish iron ore getting to Germany.
However the day a ter the Allies began mining, the Nazis occupied
Denmark and invaded Norway. Allied troops were sent to help Norway, but
the campaign was poorly planned and the Allied orces driven out.
The ailure o the Norway campaign contributed to C hamberlain s
decision to resign. The result was that C hurchill took over as head o a
coalition government in B ritain.
With the de eat o France in 1 940 and the evacuation o the B ritish
rom D unkirk, B ritain stood alone against the German army. At this
point, Hitler put orward another peace o ensive . It is possible that
C hamberlain or other members o the B ritish government would have
been prepared to consider these proposals. However, C hurchill was
determined to continue fghting. His leadership was to prove key in the
ensuing B attle o B ritain and the B litz where the Lu twa e attacked
London and other cities over the next ew months.
D uring 1 940, B ritain attempted to fnd allies. However, the US A
continued with its isolationist stance. Roosevelt persuaded C ongress to
amend the Neutrality Acts so that B ritain could buy arms on a cash
and carry basis. However, even when B ritain stood alone against Nazi
Germany at the end o 1 940, most Americans were not in avour o
getting involved in the war.
B y the end o 1 940, B ritain was also su ering rom Germany s U- boat
campaign. Nevertheless, as explained at the end o chapter 2 .5 , Hitler s
invasion o the S oviet Union was to ensure Germany s ultimate de eat.
As Zara S teiner writes,
Each o the Axis powers were encouraged to embark on aggressive policies
which were to bring the Soviet Union and the United States into what became
in 1 941 a global confict. While the survival o Britain prevented a total
German victory, only the entry o the Soviet Union and the United States
ensured the destruction o Nazi Germany and, or the most part, dictated the
outcome o the world war and the shape o the post-war settlement.
Steiner, p. 1 064

The Second World War: The historical debate

How important was appeasement as a cause of the
Second World War?
In the years ollowing the end o the S econd World War, there was
much debate among historians as to the ro le o appeasement in causing
the war. S ir Winston C hurchill called the S econd World War the
unnecessary war that would not have taken place had Hitler been
stop ped earlier, or example in 1 9 3 6 over the Rhineland or in 1 93 8
over C zechoslovakia. The appeasers were seen as weak, rightened
men who had been a raid to stand up to Hitler and who had ailed to
realize that they were dealing with a calculating and ruthless dictator.
B y consistently giving in to Hitler s demands they had encouraged his
aggression and alienated the S oviet Union. Appeasement also meant
that Hitler had gambled on that policy continuing when he invaded
Poland, which was the trigger or war. AJP Taylor argued that Hitler
did not have a clear plan or ho w he would carry out his oreign policy
aims, and that he in act reacted to the actions o the E uropean leaders:
the Fascist dictators would not have gone to war unless they had seen a
chance o winning .. . the cause o war was there ore as much the blunders
o others as the wickedness o the dictators themselves Taylor, 1 961

Clas s di
s cu s s i
o n
Those who argue that appeasement was a weak policy suggest that other actions
could have been taken by Britain and France. In pairs, consider the advantages
and disadvantages o these alternative routes o action:
using the League o Nations more efectively to stop the actions o the dictators
being prepared to use orce against Hitler when he marched into the Rhineland
standing up to Hitler over the Sudetenland
spending more on armaments in the early 1930s
ollowing Churchill s idea o establishing a Grand Alliance o the anti-Fascist
countries against Hitler.

When B ritish C abinet minutes and government papers became available

Co m m u ni
cat i
o n and
3 0 40 years a ter the end o the S econd World War, it became clear
s o ci
als ki
lls that C hamberlain had been dealing with a complex situation. Given
Divide the class into two teams. the di fculties and constraints on C hamberlain which included the
The motion that you will be realities o the B ritish economy, B ritish imperial commitments, as well as
debating is: public opinion concerning the horror o another war and the inj ustices
o the Treaty o Versailles on Germany it becomes easier to see the
Appeasem ent w a s both the
orces that shaped appeasement as a policy. Richard O very argues that
w rong policy orthe 1930 s a nd
C hamberlain s policy was, in act, the right one or B ritain at the time
a faw ed policy .
and paid o in the sense that Hitler was orced into a general E uropean
You will need three speakers on war earlier than he had planned, and at a date when B ritain was in a
each side. The rest o the team stronger military position than it had been in 1 93 8.
should help research and write
the speeches, and also prepare Indeed, most historians would now agree that it was the ambitions o
questions or the opposing team. Hitler that were the key cause o the Second World War. Ruth Henig
sums up the debate:
We cannot be certain o the extent to which Hitler might have been
encouraged in his expansion course by the lack o opposition he received. The
view he already held that Britain and France were powers in serious decline,
who would not put up any serious resistance to his eastern expansion was
rein orced and this may have speeded up his plans.
But historians are now in no doubt that Hitler was intent on expansion
and was prepared to fght a war, or series o wars, to achieve his objectives.

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The other powers ultimately had two choices: they could acquiesce in his
Communication skills
plans or try to resist them. And whenever resistance came whether over
Nazi demands for the return of the Sudetenland, or Danzig and the Polish Draw up your own timeline rom
Corridor it was likely to provoke war. Henig, 1 999 1933 40.
the timeline write the
Self-management actions o Hitler and the actions
skills o Mussolini (use a diferent
colour or each dictator) .
Go to, or search World War II
Germany Road To War . the timeline, write
the actions o the Western
Watch the documentary Germany: Road To War to review the key actions taken
by Hitler and the responses o the Western powers. (Hitler s oreign policy starts
15 minutes into the clip.) Make your timeline detailed
and use ul as a revision tool.

Full document question: The Munich Conference, 1938

Source A leaders, cause peace to prevail in a crisis; but
E xtract from The Times, a UK newsp ap er, that the threat o ruin to civilisation will recur
1 O ctober 1 93 8. unless inj ustices are aced and removed in
quiet times, instead o being le t to ester until
No conqueror returning rom a victory on it is too late or remedy.
the battle eld has come home adorned with
nobler laurels than Mr. C hamberlain rom Source B
Munich yesterday; and the King and people A cartoon, Still Hope , published in Punch, a
alike have shown by the manner o their UK magazine, 2 1 Sep tember 1 93 8.
reception their sense o this achievement
Had the Go vernment o the United Kingdom
been in less resolute hands, it is certain as
it can be that war, incalculable in its range,
would have broken out against the wishes o
every people concerned. The horror o such a
catastrophe was no less in Germany. S o much
is clear rom the immense popular enthusiasm
with which Mr. C hamberlain was greeted
on each o his three visits Indeed, these
visits seem to have increased the F hrer s
understanding o his own people s sentiments,
with a de nite e ect upon his policy.
Let us hope that he may go on to see the
wisdom o allowing them at all times to know
the sentiments o other peoples instead o
imposing between them a smoke- screen o
ignorance and propaganda. For our nation
it remains to show our gratitude to Mr.
C hamberlain, chiefy by learning the lessons
taught by the great dangers through which
we have been so nely led that only a people
prepared to ace the worst can, through their

Source C Source D
S p eech by Winston Churchill in the House of Zara S teiner. The Triumph of the Dark:
C ommons, 5 O ctob er 1 93 8. European International History 1 933 1 999
(2 01 1 ) .
I will begin by saying what everybody
would like to ignore or orget but which C hamberlain understoo d that his
must nevertheless be stated, namely, that intervention was a high- risk strategy. Not
we have sustained a total and unmitigated only did he believe that Hitler might go
de eat, and that France has su ered more to war, he also agreed with his civilian
than we have and military advisers that B ritain was in
no position to fght. There was virtual
No one has been a more resolute and
consensus in Whitehall that little co uld
uncompromising struggler or peace than the
be done to p rotect C zechoslovakia against
Prime Minister. Everyone knows that. Never
attack and that no p eace treaty, even a ter a
has there been such intense and undaunted
terrible war, could restore Prague to its 1 9 1 9
determination to maintain and to secure
po sitio n. The p rime minster was co nvinced
peace. That is quite true. Nevertheless, I am
that no state, certainly no democratic state
not quite clear why there was so much danger
ought to make a threat o war, unless it was
o Great B ritain or France being in a war with
both ready to carry it o ut and p repared to
Germany at this j uncture i , in act, they were
do so . S ignifcantly, under crisis co nditions,
ready all along to sacrifce C zechoslovakia. The
B ritain s leaders assumed a worst- case
terms that the Prime Minster brought back
scenario. The expectatio n o a uture German
with him could easily have been agreed,
bombing campaign, the number o aircra t
I believe, through the ordinary diplomatic
and bombs, and the resulting casualty
channels at any time during the summer
fgures were all grossly exaggerated it
All is over. S ilent, mourn ul, abandoned, was assumed that B ritain was at least two
broken, C zechoslovakia recedes into darkness. years behind the corresponding German air
S he has su ered in every respect by her programme. Little was exp ecte d rom the
association with the Western democracies and C zech army there was no substantive
with the League o Nations o which she has planning with the French
always been an obedient servant
C hamberlain undo ubte dly re le cte d the
When I think o the air hopes o a long peace o p inion o mos t B ritish me n and wo men,
which still lay be ore Europe at the beginning whe n o n the eve ning o 2 7 th S ep temb er,
o 1 93 3 when Herr Hitler frst obtained power, he sp o ke o a quarrel in a ar- away
and o all the opportunities o arresting the co untry b e twee n peo p le o who m we
growth o the Nazi power which have been kno w no thing . While ackno wledging the
thrown away, when I think o the immense hardening o p o litical and p ublic mo od, he
combinations and resources which have been still believe d that the co u ntry wanted
neglected or squandered, I cannot believe that p e ace. There was no credible war p arty in
a parallel exists in the whole o history B ritain and no p o ss ible le ade r who co uld
I do not grudge our loyal, brave people, who re p lace him.
were ready to do their duty no matter what First question, part a 3 marks
the cost I do not grudge them the natural,
According to S ource A, why was C hamberlain
spontaneous outburst o j oy and relie when
greeted so enthusiastically on his return rom
they learned that the hard ordeal would no
longer be required o them at the moment;
but they should know the truth and do not First question, part b 2 marks
suppose that this is the end. This is only the
What is the message o Source B ?
beginning o the reckoning.
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Second question 4 marks Fourth question 9 marks

With re erence to its origin, purpose and content, With re erence to the sources and your own
assess the values and limitations o Source C or knowledge, examine the reasons or C hamberlain s
historians studying the Munich C on erence. decision to agree to Hitler s demands at Munich.

Third question 6 marks

C ompare and contrast the views expressed in
S ources A and C regarding the outcome o the
Munich C on erence.

Eden, A. 1 962 . Facing the Dictators: The Memoirs of Anthony Eden. Houghton
Mi fin. B oston, USA
Faber, D . 2 008. Munich, 1 938. Simon & Schuster. London, UK
Henig, R. 1 99 9. Modern History Review, pages 2 9 3 1
Overy, R. 2 008. Origins of the Second World War. Routledge. London, UK
Steiner, Z. 2 01 1 . The Triumph of the Dark: European International History
1 933 1 939. O x ord University Press. New York, USA
Taylor, AJP. 1 964. The Origins of the Second World War. Penguin.
Harmondsworth, UK
Writing the internal assessment
or IB History
copy o the IA. In total, completing the IA should
Key concepts take a p p ro x im a te ly 2 0 h o u rs. This chapter is
Causation Change designed to give both students and teachers some
Consequence Perspective guidance or approaching these tasks.
Continuity Signi cance Class discussion
Key questions How does the place and the time you live in a ect the
What is the purpose o the internal assessment in topics you might be interested in, or curious about?
history? How might where and when you live a ect the evidence
How is the internal assessment structured and and sources you have access to? Which topics could
assessed? you investigate that students in other places could not?
What does this tell us about the nature o history?
What are some suggested strategies or choosing a
topic and getting started?
What are some common mistakes students make?
What does the IA look like?
The IA is d iv id e d in to th re e m a in se ctio n s.
What are good criteria or selecting sources? E ach o these sections will be explained and
What are the challenges acing the historian? approached in more detail later in this chapter.
B elow is an overview o each section:

Doing history : Thinking like a

1. Identi cation and evaluation o sources
historian (6 marks)
The in te rn a l a ssessm e n t (IA ) is an engaging,
inquiry- based 2 2 0 0 w o rd in v e stig a tio n
Clearly state the topic in the orm o an appropriate
inquiry question.
that provides teachers and students with the
opportunity to personalize their learning. You will Explain the nature and relevance o two o the
select, research and write on a historical topic o sources selected or more detailed analysis o
individual interest or curiosity. values and limitations with re erence to origins,
purpose and content.
The IA is an essential component o the IB History
course. Students in both standard level ( 2 5 % ) and
higher level ( 2 0% ) will complete the same task 2. Investigation (15 marks)
as part o their course mark. Your teacher will
evaluate your fnal dra t, but only a small, random Using appropriate ormat and clear organization,
sample o your class IAs will be submitted to the provide critical analysis that is ocused on the
IB or moderation. question under investigation.
Include a range o evidence to support an argument
The purpose o the historical investigation is to
and analysis, and a conclusion drawn rom the
engage students in the process o thinking like
historians and doing history by creating their
own questions, gathering and examining evidence,
analyzing perspectives, and demonstrating rich 3. Refection (4 marks)
historical knowledge in the conclusions they
draw. Given its importance, your teacher should Refect on the process o investigating your
provide considerable time, guidance, practice o question and discuss the methods used by
skills and eedback throughout the process o historians, and the limitations or challenges o
planning, dra ting, revising and submitting a fnal investigating their topic.


Your history teachers can use the IA or whatever

purposes best suit the school context, syllabus
Beginning with the end in mind:
design or the individual learning o students. what does success look like?
Nevertheless, you should be encouraged to select

Self-management skills
and develop your own question. The IA can be
started at any point during the course, however the Throughout the process o planning, researching,
task is most e ectively introduced a ter students dra ting and revising your investigation, you should be
have been exposed to some purpose ul teaching continually checking the criteria. Ask your teacher and
and practice in historical methods, analysis and other students to provide speci c eedback using the
writing skills. criteria. Continually ask yoursel i your work meets
the criteria.
The IA is designed to assess each o the ollowing
History obj ectives:
B e ore getting started, you should look care ully
Assessment objective 1: Knowledge and at the assessment criteria to appreciate what each
section o the IA demands. Teachers will use
the same criteria for both S L and HL. It is
Demonstrate understanding o historical sources. important to have a clear understanding o what
Assessment objective 2: Application and success will look like be ore you invest the time
and hard work that this task will require. Teachers
will use the criterion ound in the IB History Guide
Analyse and interpret a variety o sources. to provide eedback to teachers and to assess the
Assessment objective 3: Synthesis and fnal dra t. The assessment is based on positive
achievement , meaning that teachers will try to
fnd the best ft according to the descriptors in
Evaluate sources as historical evidence, recognizing each criterion. Students do not have to write a
their value and limitations. per ect paper to achieve the highest descriptors,
Synthesize in ormation rom a selection o relevant and teachers should not think in terms o pass/ ail
sources. based on whether scores are above or below 5 0%
o the 2 5 marks in total.
Assessment objective 4: Use and application
of appropriate skills To simpli y the criterion and to provide some fxed
targets or what success looks like, consider using
Refect on the methods used by, and challenges the assessment tool provided on the next page.
acing, the historian.
Formulate an appropriate, ocused question to guide
a historical inquiry.
Demonstrate evidence o research skills,
organization, re erencing and selection o
appropriate sources.

Teach er , Peer and Self-As s es s m ent To o l
Criterion A: Identi cation and evaluation o sources (6 marks)
Suggested word count: 500
Criteria or success Strengths
Does the in vestigation have an appropriate question clearly stated?

H as the stu den tselected,iden ti ed,an d re eren ced ( u sin g a con sisten t
orm at) appropriate and relevant sources?
Is there a clear explanation o the relevance o the sou rces to the
in vestigation ?
Is there detailed an alysis an d evalu ation o two sources w ith exp licit
discu ssion o the value and limitations,w ith re eren ce to theirorigins,
purpose and content?

Criterion B: Investigation (15 marks)

Suggested word count: 1,300
Criteria or success Strengths
Is the in vestigation clear, coherent and efectively organized?

Does the in vestigation con tain well-developed critical analysis clearly

ocused on the stated question?
Is there eviden ce rom a range o sources u sed e ectively to support an
Is there evaluation o diferent perspectives ( argu m en ts,claim s,
exp erien ces etc.) on the top ic an d/orqu estion ?

Does the in vestigation p rovide a reasoned conclusion thatis consistent

with the evidence and arguments provided?

Criterion C: Refection (4 marks)

Suggested word count: 400
Criteria or success Strengths
Does the stu den t ocus clearly on w hatthe in vestigation revealed abou t
the methods used by historians?
Does the refection dem on strate clearawareness o the challenges acin g
historian s an d/orthe limitations o the methods u sed by historian s?
Is there an explicit connection betw een the refection an d the resto the
in vestigation ( qu estion ,sou rces u sed,evalu ation an d an alysis) ?


Bibliography & formatting (no marks applicable)

Suggested word count: Not included in total
Criteria for success Strengths
Is the word count clearly stated on the cover? (2200 maximum)

Is a single bibliographic style or format consistently used?

Is the bibliography clearly organized and include all the sources you
have referenced or used as evidence in the investigation?

Getting started: Approaches to C o-develop good questions and carry out an

investigation o a historical event as a entire class.
learning history Read an excerpt rom a historian s work and

Thinking skills identi y which parts are analysis, evidence and

To start generating ideas or a topic and to help you ocus
your question, use a research-based thinking routine I students better understand that history is more
such as Think-Puzzle-Explore (see Ritchhart, Church and than simply memorizing and reporting on acts,
Morrison, 2011. Make Thinking Visible, Jossey-Bass) . dates and chronological narratives, then they are
Think: What topics do you think might interest you? more likely to be curious, engaged and motivated
learners o history. Accordingly, they will more
Puzzle: What puzzles you about these topics? likely develop appropriate questions or their
Explore: How can you explore more about each o investigation and have a better understanding o
these topics? how to organize and write e ective analysis.

Ideally, you will have opportunities throughout

the IB History course to explore and develop
Selecting a topic and appropriate questions
understandings about the methods and the

nature o history. This will prepare you to better

Self-management skills
develop the skills necessary or the IA and the Be ore beginning, ask your teacher to fnd some
other assessment papers in the IB History course. examples o student IAs with examiner s eedback.
Additionally, these kinds o learning activities These can be ound on the IB Online Curriculum Centre
provide clear links to TO K. or in the Teachers Support Materials or History.
Debate controversial historical events and claims.
Examine the ormatting and layout o each component to
visualize in advance what your IA might look like, and the
C ompare and corroborate conficting sources o steps that will be required to complete them.
Once you have some general understanding o the
Take on, role play or de end di erent
IA components and are amiliar with the assessment
perspectives or experiences o an event.
criteria, it is time to select a topic ocus. Students
D iscuss the value and limitations o historian s o ten do not know how to begin selecting a topic.
arguments and evidence. Identi y a historical topic o interest and get to know
it well by conducting some background reading
D evelop criteria or selecting and comparing
rom a general history textbook or an online
historical sources.
encyclopaedia. You may nd some in ormation
Gather and analyze a variety o di erent kinds that will help you narrow the topic ocus quickly.
o sources (photos, artwork, j ournal entries, These kinds o sources o ten outline the di ering
maps, etc. ) ocused on the same event or issue. perspectives, interpretations and controversies

that make or an engaging investigation. Well- or sources. Whatever the topic that you select, it is
written textbooks and articles will also include essential to ormulate a good question.
re erences, annotated bibliographies and ootnotes
O ne o the most common errors students make
o additional, more detailed sources that will help in
when planning and writing the IA is ormulating
the research stage.
a poor question about their topic. Formulating
A ter selecting a topic, ormulating an appropriate a good question is essential or success and
research question can also be very challenging. It is helps ensure that the IA is a manageable and
essential that you take the time to care ully think researchable investigation. C onsider the ollowing
about what kinds o topics help produce good criteria when ormulating a good question:
questions or investigations. B e ore you begin any
writing, you should submit a p rop osal to your There is an adequate variety and
teacher to ensure that the investigation will be availability o sources related to
1 The your topic.
success ul.
question is
Some teachers recommend that students write about The sources are readable,
researchable. available and in a language that
a topic related to their course syllabus, but there
are a countless number o possible topics and you is accessible.
are better o choosing topics that interest you and Questions that are vague or too
motivate you to learn. The topic must be historical broad make it difcult to write a
however, so students may not investigate any ocused investigation limited to
topic that happened within the last ten years.
2 The 2200 words.
All investigations will take one o three orms: question is
Questions that are too broad
focused. make it difcult to manage the
1 An investigation o a historical theme,
issue, p erson or event based on a variety number o sources needed to
o sources. adequately address the topic.
2 An investigation based on feldwork o a Interesting, controversial or
historical building, p lace or site. challenging historical problems
3 The make better questions.
3 An investigation o a local history.
question is Questions with obvious answers
When selecting a historical topic, students o ten (i.e. Did economic actors play a
ail to select a topic that is manageable. For role in Hitler s rise to power?) do
example, examining all o the causes o the Second not make good investigations.
World War is too broad or the purposes o a 2 2 00
word investigation. Many students also select
topics that cannot be researched in depth because
there are not enough readily available primary Using the concepts to formulate good
and/or secondary sources. questions
Investigating a historically- themed flm or piece The IB History course is ocused on six key
o literature can be very engaging; but many concep ts: change, continuity, causation,
students write better papers when they ocus the consequence, signifcance and p ersp ectives.
investigation on a particular claim, portrayal or E ach o these concepts shape historians thinking
perspective contained in the work, rather than about the kinds o questions they ask and
the entire work itsel . S tudents who choose to investigate. There ore, they are help ul to students
investigate a historical site, or to investigate local as a ramework or ormulating good IA questions.
or community history, o ten have an opportunity Using the historical thinking concepts, you may be
to engage in experiences that are more authentic able to generate several good questions about any
to the work o pro essional historians, but these historical topic that can be eventually ocused into
can also produce a lot o challenges when looking success ul investigations.


Concepts Possible investigation prompts

What changes resulted rom this topic?

change To what extent did this event, person or issue cause change?

To what extent did the topic remain the same?

Did this event, person or issue cause progress or decline?

What were the long term, short term and immediate causes?
causation What were the actors that caused the event related to the topic?
Student s topic
How has this topic had immediate and long-lasting e ects?
consequence How signifcant were the e ects o this topic?

To what extent is this topic signifcant? Is the signifcance o this

signifcance topic justifed?
What events, people or issues are important to know about this
What di erent perspectives or interpretations are there about this
How did people experience this topic?

To illustrate, a student interested in the Russian question is ocused on the signifcance o a specifc,
Revolution might use the concepts to brainstorm singular cause. For good examples o historical
the ollowing possible investigations: questions, you should consult past Paper 2 or
Paper 3 examination questions.
: In what ways did the Russian Revolution
change Russian society? You should notice that many o the questions
above include more than one concept. Most good
: To what extent did Stalin s regime
historical investigations will require students
resemble the Tsarist system?
to think about perspectives because there will
: How signifcant were long term actors likely be multiple accounts o the issue under
in causing the February Revolution? investigation, or there will be some controversy
: To what extent did Stalin s purges between historians. Here are some question
a ect military preparedness? exemplars showing how they capture more than
one key historical concepts:
: How important was Lenin s role in
the October Revolution? How signifcant was Allied area bombing in reducing
German industrial capacity during the Second World
: To what extent did Doctor Zhivago War? (signifcance; consequence)
capture the experience o upper class Russians during
the Revolution? To what extent did Gandhi s leadership achieve
Indian independence? (signifcance; perspectives;
A ter generating some possible questions, students causation)
can bring greater ocus to their topic. For example,
a student interested in how women experienced All success ul IAs begin with a well- developed,
Stalinism may narrow the ocus to a particular thought ul and ocused question that is based on
place or event. A student investigating long- term one or more o the historical concepts.
causes o an event may have more success i the

Internal Assessment skills 2 Researching Gather in ormation sources and
Categorize the following questions (Good Needs evidence.
Improvement Poor) according to their suitability as a Care ully read and evaluate
historical investigation according to the criteria provided in ormation.
above. Suggest ways the questions might be improved. 3 Organizing Create notes.
1 Which Second World War lm is the most accurate? and Record re erences using a
2 To what extent did nationalism play a role in causing processing standard citation ormat.
the First World War? Create a bibliography.
3 How did women win the right to vote in the United Organize ideas into an outline.
Formulate an argument.
4 Did Hitler use lm or propaganda?
4 Drafting Write each section o the IA.
5 In what ways did Stalin start the Cold War?
Revise and edit.
6 To what extent was the infuenza epidemic a actor in
the collapse o the Central Powers in 1918? Check assessment criteria.
5 Sharing Submit a dra t or eedback.
Common problems when selecting a topic and question: 6 Revising Revise based on eedback rom
Poorly ocused question too broad and your teacher.
unmanageable. 7 Publishing Submit nal copy to your teacher.
Obvious question. Evaluate using criteria.
Question is not researchable.

Getting organized: researching

Getting organized: making a plan
Communication skills
o investigation
When supporting historical claims, it is important to make
Self-management skills your evidence visible to your reader. Make sure you use
Create your own plan or completion with target dates a standard bibliographic ormat to show the reader where
and goals. Submit this with your proposed topic and your evidence was ound. In the discipline o history, the
question. Include some initial sources o in ormation you University o Chicago style or MLA style is most commonly
will use. used because it provides signi cant in ormation about
the origins o the source, and the endnotes or ootnotes
C ompleting the IA successfully requires that
ormat allows the historian to insert additional in ormation
students create a plan for comp letion that
about the source where necessary.
includes several important steps of the inquiry
process. Some of the steps may overlap, but it is Take good notes during the research stage.
important that you organize your tasks and stay Post- it notes are helpful to record thoughts and
on track for completion by setting goals and due ideas next to key passages as you read and think
dates. Your teacher should read at least one draft about the information in relation to the question.
and give some feedback to ensure that the IA is not Using different coloured highlighters to identify
plagiarised. A plan of investigation should include different perspectives on the question as you read
the following steps: can also be helpful. If using borrowed books, take
a photo of important pages on a tablet device and
1 Planning Select a topic and ormulate a use a note taking application to highlight and
question. write notes on the page. S tudents who make their
Submit a proposal to your teacher. thinking visible as they read will have a easier
time writing later in the process. C reate a timeline
Identi y in ormation sources. of the event you are researching to ensure the
chronology is clear in your mind.


It is strongly recommended that you record the most common ormats used or bibliographies in
bibliographic in ormation and page numbers university history departments.
where you fnd important evidence and analysis.
Many students wait until the very end o the Common problems when planning and organizing an IA:
writing process to compile their bibliography, Lack o general background knowledge o the topic.
but this is much more easily accomplished i the
No eedback on proposed topic and question.
in ormation is recorded throughout, instead o as an
a terthought when the dra t is fnished. There are No plan or completion.
several easily accessible web sites that provide the Inaccurately recording page numbers and re erences.
most up-to-date versions o MLA ( ,
Poorly organized notes; or no notes at all.
and C hicago Manual of S tyle ( www.
chicagomanualo style. org) , which are the two

Internal Assessment skills

Create a proposal for the IA using the template shown.
Topic: Student:

Research question:

Proposed sources:

Sources (2) proposed or evaluation in Section A:

Section A: Identifcation and Common problems with Section A:

evaluation o sources Question is not clearly stated.
Section A is worth 6 o the 2 5 total marks. It is Relevance or signifcance o selected sources not
recommended that the word count does not exceed explained.
much more than 5 00 words. While this section Student summarizes the content o selected sources.
does not count or a substantial portion o the
Limited analysis.
marks, most students will not be success ul without
a strong Section A. There are three key aspects o Discussion o origins, purpose and content is in
this section. isolation to value and limitations.
1 Clearly state the topic of the investigation. Poorly chosen sources.
(This must be stated as a question) . Speculates vaguely about the values and limitations
2 Include a brief exp lanation of the two o sources.
sources the student has selected for Re erence to origins, purpose and content is not
detailed analysis, and a brief exp lanation of explicit.
their relevance to the investigation.
3 With reference to their origins, p urp ose and Thinking about evidence: origins,
content, analyse the value and limitations
of the two sources. purpose, value and limitations
B ecause it is built on a oundation o evidence,
history is by nature interpretive and controversial.

This is not something many people understand have poor reasons in support o this beyond the act
to them history is simply a long list o dates that it is a primary source.
and dead people. While there are a great many
It is important that you understand how to
things historians agree upon, there are countless
evaluate the value and limitations o sources with
historical questions that are enshrouded in debate
re erence to the origins, purpose and content o
and controversy. S ince relatively ew people
the source. D iscussing the origin, purpose and
personally witness the events they study, how one
content outside the context o the value and
understands the past depends largely on which
limitations will result in a poor assessment.
sources o evidence are used, and how they are
interpreted. Even acts that historians generally Origins Where did the source come from?
agree upon can change over time. Philosopher
Who wrote or created it?
Ambrose B ierce once said, God alone knows the
future, but only a historian can alter the past. Though Whose perspectives are represented?
the past cannot actually be changed, historical Whose are not?
memory and understanding is always changing Purpose Why was this created?
as each generation brings orward new questions, What purpose might this document have
new evidence and new perspectives. This process served?
o changing historical interpretations is re erred to Content What does the source mean?
as r e v is io n is m . Revisionist historians are those
who challenge o r th o d o x , or generally accepted What does it reveal or contain?
arguments and interpretations. How useful is the information? Is it
reasonable to believe it is accurate? Can
B esides revisionism, another reason why history
it be corroborated?
is controversial is that accounts or evidence rom
the same events can di er drastically. People record Generally, the closer in proximity ( place and time)
events rom di erent o r igin s a n d p er s p ectiv es , the origin o a primary source is, the more v a lu e
and or di erent p u r p o s es . Historical evidence it has to historians. I students can fnd ways to
might come rom a limitless number o possible co r r o b o r a te ( support, confrm) a source by other
kinds o sources. Sources that all originate rom sources, then the source likely has greater value
the same time and place that we are investigating to the investigation. L im ita tio n s may include
are typically re erred to as p r im a r y s o u r ces . any actors that cause someone to question the
The interpretations and narratives that we fnd truth ulness, validity or value o a source.
in documentaries, articles and books created by
Keep in mind, that using the term b ia s is not
historians are called s eco n d a r y s o u r ces .
always use ul in history it is important to be able
Students o ten make the error o thinking that to identi y bias, but bias does not necessarily limit
primary sources are more authentic and reliable, the value o a source. S tudents o ten make the
and there ore have more v a lu e, and ewer error o assuming a source is unreliable because
lim ita tio n s than secondary sources. This isn t they detect bias. Remember that most people will
always the case. B eing there does not necessarily have biased perspectives that are unique to their
give greater insight into events, and indeed, own experiences, time and place. This does not
sometimes the opposite is true. Historians can look mean that you should blindly dismiss the evidence
at events rom multiple perspectives and use a wide they o er us. You should ensure that you explain
range o evidence not available to the eyewitness. clearly how the bias a ects the value o the
Students o ten speculate that a primary source is content in the source used.
valuable and signifcant to their investigation, but


Internal Assessment skills

Use this template for taking notes from each of the sources used in the investigation.
Research Question:

Source (bibliographic in ormation) :

Primary or How is the source relevant/signifcant to the Origins/Purpose?

secondary investigation?

Page#: What evidence does the source provide? What is your interpretation? How does the content o
(quote, paraphrase, describe) the source relate to your question? What perspective
does it add?

Selecting sources or the IA S elect sources or excerpts o sources that have

clear signifcance to the question. You should
One o the challenges to students writing a
be able to clearly, and explicitly explain why
success ul S ection A is making sure that they
the content o the source is important to the
choose two appropriate sources to evaluate.
investigation. S ome students choose sources
You should be able to clearly and e ectively
that are largely irrelevant or vaguely related to
explain why the chosen sources are relevant and
the question.
important to the investigation.
The investigation should include an appropriate
O ten students make the mistake o relying
range o sources. As a general rule, you should
too heavily on non- scholarly sources such as
include both primary and secondary sources,
online encyclopaedia articles and general history
but this may not work with some types o
textbooks. As stated, these are good starting points
investigations. While secondary sources on a
or fnding a topic, but they are not good sources to
topic are likely to be easily obtained, they o ten
build your investigation upon. They are especially
provide less to discuss in S ection A.
poor choices to use or detailed analysis in this
Interviews, personal correspondence,
section. B e ore selecting sources consider the
newspaper articles, j ournals, speeches, letters,
and other primary sources o ten provide
You will be expected to discuss as much detail students with much more meaning ul material
about the origins and purpose o the source to evaluate in S ection A. Ideas about origins
as possible. B e sure to choose sources where and purpose come more readily with primary
you can identi y as much o the ollowing as sources than they might when using secondary
possible: when it was created; who created sources which generally, but not always,
it; why it was created; where it was created. strive to present balanced arguments and
I much o this in ormation is not readily perspectives.
identifable, you will have di fculty evaluating
C hoose secondary sources that re erence the
value and limitations with explicit re erence to
evidence the historians used to support their
the origins and purpose.
arguments. You will fnd it less di fcult to

assess the validity o the evidence the historian the investigation, the largest portion o Section A
uses, or how the evidence is interpreted in the should ocus on analysing the two sources.
arguments, i the historian has documented the D epending on the sources chosen, they can be
evidence clearly. discussed simultaneously and comparatively, or
they can be discussed separately. D iscussing them
C onsider using periodical articles. Many
separately is o ten more advantageous because
historians write excellent, concise articles on
you can make the origins, purpose, value and
historical topics or peer- reviewed j ournals.
limitations more explicit.
These articles o ten have rich ootnoting
and bibliographies that you can use to fnd It is important that any arguments about the
additional sources or the investigation. value and limitations make specifc re erences
to the content, origins and purpose.
B e care ul about relying too heavily on general
web- based sources. Many online sources are B e care ul that the value o a source is not
not re erenced or ootnoted properly so it is dismissed on the basis o bias without a strong
di fcult to validate in ormation about the argument about why the bias limits the validity
origins, purpose and authorship. O n the other or reliability o the content.
hand, a great number o rich primary sources
You should avoid summarizing the content
can be ound online, as well as articles written
too much. S ummarize and describe content
by respected historians.
only to the extent necessary to construct a
C onsider using interviews. Some students strong analysis about the source s value and
have written exceptional IAs based on people s limitations.
experiences, or by interviewing historians or
You should be thorough in examining all
other people with extensive knowledge and
aspects o the source s origins including date o
experience. When using interviews, record them
origin, cultural context, author s background,
as an audio fle or re erence and accuracy.
publisher or other important details. I little
in ormation about the origins is identifable, it
Analysing the selected sources is likely a poorly chosen source or analysis.

A ter stating the research question and explaining

the two selected sources and their relevance to

Internal Assessment skills

Use the Section A assessment criteria to discuss and Source 1 : Prisoner of State: the secret journal of
evaluate this excerpt of a student s work. Identify Zhao Ziyang1
where the student has explicitly discussed origins and The origin o the source is o great value because the
purpose, and value and limitations. author is Zhao Ziyang, the General Secretary o the
This investigation will seek to answer the question What Communist Party during the Tiananmen Square Protest
did the Tiananmen Square protest reveal about the (the Protest). Zhao attempted to use a non-violent
democratic sentiments in China between 1980 and 1989? approach to resolve the protest and spoke against the
Democratic sentiments are de ned as people s attitudes party s hardliners. A ter a power struggle, Zhao was
toward democratic ideals. This investigation will analyze dismissed and put under house arrest until his death
actors that infuenced democratic sentiments rom multiple in 2005. The content o the journal is translated rom
perspectives, but will not assess the ethics and justi cation thirty audiotapes recorded secretly by Zhao while he was
o the Chinese governments response to the protest. under house arrest between 1 999 and 2000. The book
In order to take into account the opposing views on this is published in 2009 by Simon & Schuster, one o the
event and keep the scope o the investigation manageable, largest and most reputable English-language publishers.
I have made use o a variety o care ully selected sources. The reputation o the author and publisher increases the
Two primary sources will be evaluated reliability o this source.


Zhao s purpose for recording these tapes is to publicize within the Communist Party through the lens of the
his political opinions and express his regret for failing to progressive bloc.
prevent the massacre. This is valuable because Zhao was However, its exclusivity may limit its value because there
not allowed to publicize his opinions while under house are no counterparts to compare with and to verify its claims.
arrest, so this source is the only surviving public record As a translated material, the source may not accurately
of Zhao s opinions and perspectives on the Protest. This present Zhao s intentions and may have lost some cultural
source is also valuable because its author, Zhao, was expressions. In addition, this source may be biased in that
directly involved in the government s decision-making Zhao speaks in favour of political reform and democracy,
process during the protest. It reveals the power struggle which does not represent the Party s position

Zhao, Ziyang, Pu Bao, Renee Chiang, Adi Ignatius, and Roderick MacFarquhar. Prisoner of the state: the secret journal of Zhao Ziyang.
New York: Simon & Schuster, 2009.

Section B: Investigation commentary should be care ully planned

to ensure that there is logic and fow to the
Common problems with Section B: section, and that your argument is very clear.
Too much narrative. The type o question you pose or the
Poor re erencing o sources. investigation will determine how you organize
your writing. For example, a question that
Limited awareness o di erent positions or
invites comparisons ( or example: whether a
lm portrays an event accurately) will require
Listing o evidence instead o integrating analysis you to discuss both similarities and di erences.
and evidence. To what extent questions will require you
Overuse o quotations. to discuss both perspectives o ways no and
Plagiarism. ways yes .

Poor organization and arguments that are difcult As you gather evidence and document your
to ollow. thinking in your notes, keep in mind you may
need to adj ust or change your question. You
Few connections to the question and purpose o the should give some consideration to planning
investigation. and writing S ection B be ore writing S ection A.
Conclusions are not evidence-based.
Where appropriate, discuss di erent
It is essential that you keep S ection B ocused on perspectives o the topic. Historians may o er
the purpose o the investigation and construct an di erent interpretations, or there may be
argument using all o the sources you have listed multiple experiences o an event.
in the bibliography. No marks are awarded or Quotes should be used sparingly. Most o your
the bibliography, but an incomplete treatment writing should summarize and paraphrase the
o your sources, or inaccurate re erencing evidence collected and explain explicitly how it
will cost you marks in this section. E vidence relates to the investigation. Too many student
must be integrated with very clear critical papers read as long lists o quotes rom sources.
commentary that leads the reader to an eventual Quotes must be explained, or integrated as
evidence-based conclusion that addresses the evidence in support o an argument, and add
question posed in Section A. Students o ten make something speci cally and convincingly to your
the error o simply listing acts they researched, argument.
without explaining how they are relevant or relate
Any re erences to sources, or ideas that are not
to their question. The ollowing points should be
your own, should be re erenced appropriately
considered when writing this section.
using endnotes or ootnotes. I this is not
The investigation should be care ully organized. completed care ully, you risk plagiarizing
The synthesis o evidence and critical others ideas as your own.

You should avoid writing signifcant amounts a limited numbers o sources. Interviews or
o narrative. Retelling a historical narrative or community archives that this kind o IA might
sequence o events is not the purpose o the require could yield ewer, but very rich primary
investigation. O n the other hand, you should sources. Wherever possible your sources should
demonstrate a clear understanding o the be varied and specifc, rather than ew and
chronology and historical context o the events general.
you are analyzing.
Your conclusion is essential. The conclusion
Submitting your bibliography
must o er possible answers or solutions to the The bibliography an alp habetically ordered
question identifed in S ection A. It should not list of sources should be inserted at the very
read simply as a summary o points, but rather end o your paper. It is mentioned here with
as a well- reasoned, convincing, evidence- based S ection B because it should be created as part o
closure to the investigation. the writing process, not simply thrown together
at the last minute be ore submitting the paper.
There is no suggested number o appropriate This bibliography is not worth any marks but it is
sources required or your investigation. an essential component o the paper that is o ten
The number o sources you should use overlooked or poorly completed. Any sources
depends entirely on your topic and the kind re erenced as evidence in S ection B must be
o investigation you are doing. Local or included in your bibliography.
community history, or example, might o er

Internal Assessment skills

Us e the SectionB as s es s m ent criteria to evalu ate power gave people an optimistic belie in democracy, and
anexcerpt o this s tu dents inves tigation. H as the encouraged other progressives to act more openly.
s tu dent ef ectively integrated evidence and critical However, contrary to the revolutionary attitudes later
com m entary? in the protest, the democratic sentiment under Zhao s
Sentimentality played a key role in the events leading leadership was relatively constructive. Based on the
up to the protest in 1 989. Western democracy and Seven Demands3 dra ted by the protesters, it was clear
parliamentary system were believed to be the panacea that, in the beginning o the Protest, protesters did not
or China s social problems. As Zhao Ziyang stated in his intend to be anti-governmental or anti-communist; they
memoir: in act, it is the Western parliamentary democratic merely demanded that the Party take actions to end
system that has demonstrated the most vitality. It seems corruption and grant citizens more political reedom. 4
that this system is currently the best one available. 1 As the leading gure behind the Party s progressive
The death o Hu Yaobang, the ormer General Secretary bloc, Zhao was generally in line with the protestors.
o the Party who advocated strongly or democratic Internally, he attempted to persuade hardliner party
re orm, created a uni ed sense o democratic sentiments ofcials, particularly Deng, into making concession with
that united both ideological and practical groups. 2 Hu s the protestors. 5 He also allowed the media, such as the
successor, Zhao Ziyang, an even more progressive leader, People s Daily and the China Central Television to bypass
spoke publicly in avour o political re orm. Zhao s rise in censorship and broadcast the protest

Zhao, Ziyang, Pu Bao, Renee Chiang, Adi Ignatius, and Roderick MacFarquhar. Pre ace. In Prisoner o the state: the secret journal
o Zhao Ziyang. New York: Simon & Schuster, 2009. xv.
Meaning the intellectuals and the working class.
Liang, Zhang. The Tiananmen Papers. The New York Times.
(accessed May 26, 2014) .
Ziyang, op. cit.
Zhao, Dingxin. The power o Tiananmen state-society relations and the 1 989 Beijing student movement. Chicago: University
o Chicago Press, 2001. 156.


Section C: Refection What is history? Is it more creative and

interpretive as opposed to scienti c and objective?
In S ection C ( approx. 400 words) you have the
opportunity to refect on what the investigation How did the nature o your investigation
revealed to you about the methods used by present speci c challenges to nding reliable
historians and the challenges they ace when evidence?
investigating topics like your own. This section What methods did historians use? How were
is worth the ewest marks ( 4) , but it could make they limited by time and place? How are they
the di erence between a good and an outstanding limited by ideology or world views?
paper. You should no doubt already have an
understanding that the study o history is beset Is it possible to capture the entirety o an event?
with a number o challenges and limitations, What are the challenges o causation? How
some o which have been discussed earlier in ar back in time should the historian search
this chapter. Section A is designed to give you an or causes? C an immediate causes ever be
opportunity to refect on this understanding, but separated rom long term causes?
it must be ocused speci cally on the nature o
your topic and/or the kind o investigation you How might national identity, cultural norms,
undertook, rather than a refection on the nature values or belie s a ect one s ability to reason
o history in general. and arrive at an understanding o history?
How might mass culture, the entertainment
Com m on pr
oblem s withSection C: industry or other power ul orces infuence
Lim ited und er
stand ingo the natur
e o histor
y and historical understanding?
the challenges acinghistor ians.
Who decides what topics and issues are
Lim ited und er
stand ingo the m ethod s histor
ians important to record and study?
use to exam ine and stud y histor
How does bias and editorial selection impact what
Poor ly ocused on the challenges specifcto the is recorded and reported on, and what is not?
stud ents topic.
In what ways does the outcome o an event
Throughout your IB History course, your TO K and determine how it is recorded in history?
History teachers should provide opportunities or
How does technology a ect understanding o
you to think about and discuss the challenges o
history, or the methods the historian uses?
determining historical truth and understanding.
How are value j udgements in history
History can o ten be determined largely by who
determined? For example, how are terms like
writes it, his or her purpose, and the methods he
atrocity, terrorism or revolution treated now
or she decides to use. C onsider also that where
compared to the period under investigation?
there is scant evidence, historians o ten make very
Should historians make moral j udgements?
authoritative sounding essentially
educated guesses where they ll in gaps in the In what ways does the idea o progress and
historical record with j udgments they think are decline a ect our treatment o some historical
reasonable to believe. B ut o ten we cannot with events?
absolute certainty veri y or prove beyond doubt What is the role o the historian? C an the
that their accounts are correct. historian ever be obj ective?
Many o the inherent challenges o history stem Are all perspectives o history equally valid? I
rom problems related to its evidence- based nature. not, how do we determine which have greater
History is also challenging because o how it is used value?
or so many di erent purposes including political
slogans, national narratives, personal and group How might knowledge o your investigation be
identity, entertainment, advertising and countless used to solve complex problems in the present?
other ways. The past the historian studies is not a How might it be abused?
dead past. History is living, changing and visible In would be ar too ambitious or you to co nsider
in the present. There ore, there is no shortage o all o these questions in S ection C . It is essential
questions to consider in your refection section. however that you give considerable thought

2 45
to what yo u learned ab o ut history rom your process o topic selection, research, planning and
investigatio n. You should demo nstrate clear writing. B e ore submitting to your teacher or fnal
awareness o the challenges acing histo rians, assessment, make sure you have completed the
and the limitations o specifc methods used ollowing:
in investigating top ics like your own. In other S elect and thoroughly research a question o
words, there should b e a clear connection personal interest.
between the nature o history as a way o
C omplete all sections ully, according to the
thinking, and yo ur own investigation. For a
greater understanding o the nature o history,
the ollowing books are very use ul. C ompare your IA to examples posted on the
OC C or in the Teacher Support Materials.
E.E. Carr, 1961. What is History? Penguin Books. London, UK Include all relevant sources in your
M . MacMi an, 2008. The Uses and Abuses o History.
Viking. Toronto. Re erence all sources using a consistent,
standardized citation ormat.
J. l. Gaddis, 2004. The Landscape o History. New York,
Oxford University Press. E dit and proo read your work care ully.
S ubmit a dra t or e ective eedback rom your
Final touches: Wrapping up the IA
Include a title page with your question, name,
The Internal Assessment is arguably the best
candidate number and total word count clearly
opportunity IB History students have to maximize
their overall course mark. The fnal assessed mark
is entirely in your hands because you control the Include a table o contents.

Internal Assessment skills

Discuss and evaluate the student example below using on June 4th . These sources, although highly valuable to
the criteria for Section C: historians, can be biased and unreliable. There ore, historians
Ever since Deng declared martial law on May 20th, 1 989, should exercise caution when evaluating these sources.
the Tiananmen Square Protest had been a taboo topic in In order to counterbalance the a orementioned dilemma,
Mainland China. There are no public records o the Protest, I purposely limited the number o sources originated
and any discussion regarding the Protest is immediately rom the protestors. I also took advantage o my Chinese
censored. In the educational system, particularly, the pro ciency by looking through Chinese newspaper
Protest was considered non-existent . The Party s archives and talking with ormer protestors and ormer
illegitimate historical revisionism illustrates the extent Party ofcials during the protest. These methods o
to which history can be manipulated to in uence public acquiring evidence should have helped me gain a more
opinions. There ore, historians have the morally imperative balanced understanding o the democratic sentiments
role to present a balanced account o the Protest. during the protest.
However, historians hoping to investigate the Protest ace Apart rom balancing di erent perspectives, historians who
a dilemma: most primary sources are not made public by investigate this issue are under social and ethical pressures.
the Chinese government, and most available sources are I they suggest that there were democratic sentiments
rom the protestors perspectives. Historians either have no within the Party and the Army executing the martial law,
primary sources to work with, or have a disproportionate many ormer protesters (especially amilies o victims who
number o pro-protest sources. This dilemma is a common were killed during the June 4th incident) would accuse the
problem caused by illegitimate historical revisionism, historians o downplaying the Party s crime. In addition, the
which made it difcult or historians to remain objective. Western world almost unanimously agrees that the June
Government records are not available. Media coverage during 4th incident was a massacre and that the Party was the
the Protest is censored. Government and military ofcers who antagonist. Historians who propose otherwise are under
gave orders during the Protest are not permitted to publicize signi cant ideological pressure. There ore, historians should
their narratives. On the other hand, a large number o sources prevent these pressures rom in uencing the investigation.
originate rom political dissidents, protesters who sought Any conclusions should be re-examined by other historians
asylum overseas, and amilies o protestors who were killed to ensure a higher degree o objectivity.

C hiang Kai- shek Jiang Jieshi Franco, Francesco 1 2 9 , 1 5 5
C hina 1 4 Futurism 8 6
actions ollowing the Marco Po lo B ridge incident
Abyssinia 1 02 , 1 2 9 , 1 3 0, 1 9 2 , 1 9 3 6 0, 8 3 5
events o invasion o Abyssinia 1 3 7 8, 1 5 3 4 establishment o the S econd United Front 6 0, 6 7 Galeazzo C iano, Gian 1 3 2 , 1 43
how did the US A respo nd to the invasion o Manchuria 1 9 Germany 3 7 , 8 3 , 1 2 9
Abyssinia? 2 0 8 Nationalist Party 3 1 , 3 7 8 , 6 7 , 6 8 9 B eer Hall Pu tsch 1 1 0
international response to Italian invasion 2 01 9 , political instability in C hina 2 3 4, 3 1 changing diplo matic alignments in E urop e a ter
210 11 results o the Manchuria crisis or Manchuria and 1 933 1 56 7
results o the Abyssinian War 1 3 9 C hina 3 7 changing international situation 1 2 1
results o the international response to the Italian results o the Manchuria crisis or the Natio nalist D awes Plan 1 1 0
invasion 2 05 7 Party 3 7 8 did Hitler have a clear ore ign policy plan when he
why did Mu ssolini invade Abyssinia in O ctober Twenty- O ne D em ands 1 5 , 2 0 to ok power in 1 9 3 3 ? 1 2 5 6
1 935? 1 35 6 warlo rds 3 1 economic recovery in the 1 9 2 0s 1 2 1
Albania 8 3 , 1 01 , 1 8 1 C hou E n Lai 6 7 Hitler appointed C hancellor o Germany 1 1 1 , 1 2 9 ,
how did B ritain and France respond to the invasion C hurchill, Winsto n 6 0, 7 5 , 1 9 5 , 2 2 2 , 2 2 7 1 5 5, 1 92
o Albania, 7 April 1 9 3 9 ? 2 09 C lemenceau, Ge orges 1 1 3 1 4 hyp erinfation 1 1 0, 1 2 0
how did Italy take over Albania? 1 47 9 C o mmunist International ( C om intern) 2 00 im pact o First World War and de eat on Germany
why did Italy invade Albania in April 1 9 3 9 ? 1 46 7 C o mmunist Party ( C hina) 3 1 , 3 7 8 , 6 7 , 6 9 , 6 9 111 13
Anglo- German Naval Agreement 1 9 3 5 1 3 3 , 1 5 5 , C o mmunist Party ( Italy) 9 1 , 9 2 im pact o S trese mann 1 2 1
1 81 , 21 4 C o mmunist Party ( S oviet Union) 1 9 9 2 0 0 im pact o the F irst World War on Hitler s oreign
Anglo- Jap anese Alliance 1 5 , 1 9 , 2 1 , 2 2 co ncepts 1 2 , 2 3 6 8 po licy 1 1 6 1 9
Anglo- Polish Treaty 1 7 0, 1 8 1 co nsequence 2 3 7 im pact o the Great D epression on the Nazi Party
Anti- C o mintern Pact 2 9 , 40 1 , 1 2 9 , 1 43 , 1 5 5 , 1 6 5 co ntinuity 2 3 7 121 2
anti- S emitism 9 7 , 1 1 8 , 1 3 0 C o r u 83 , 1 00 1 im pact o the M unich Putsch o 1 9 2 3 on the success
appeasem ent in the 1 9 3 0s 1 9 4 7 co rroboration 2 40 o Nazism 1 2 0 1
anti- appeasers 1 9 5 co up d tat 1 6 0 im pact o the Treaty o Versailles 1 1 3 1 5
B ritain s de e nce priorities 1 9 6 C roatia 8 3 , 1 01 invasion o Poland 1 7 0, 2 2 6
B ritain s glo bal commitm ents 1 9 6 C zechoslovakia 1 45 , 1 5 6 , 1 7 1 Japan seizes German posse ssions in S hantong 1 5 ,
demands o the dictato rs se en as j usti ed 1 9 4 5 C hamb erlain s inte rvention 1 9 3 5 20, 21
economic p re ssures 1 9 5 6 liqu idation o C zechoslovakia 1 7 9 8 0 Kapp Putsch 1 1 0, 1 1 9
end o ap peasement 2 2 2 3 May C risis 1 9 3 8 1 7 5 6 Kellogg B riand Pact 1 1 1
France 1 9 7 8 S udetenland C risis 1 45 6 , 1 7 0 , 1 7 4 5 Rapallo Treaty 1 9 2 2 1 2 1 , 1 6 1
how important was appe asement as a cause o the Ruhr 1 1 0, 1 2 0, 1 5 6
S econd Wo rld War? 2 2 7 3 1 S A and the S S 1 2 0
impact o Neville C hamberlain 1 9 6 d Annunzio, Gab riele 8 3 , 9 1 S p artacist uprising 1 1 0, 1 1 9
lack o an alternative p olicy 1 9 5 imp act o D Annunzio and the Fiume a air on Third Reich 1 1 8, 1 2 0
public opinion 1 9 4 Fascism 9 1 2 timeline 1 1 0 1 1
Arab natio nalism 8 3 D aladier, E douard 1 9 7 8 u nemployment 1 1 1
Attlee, C lement 2 2 2 D almatia 9 0 1 Wall S tree t C rash 1 1 1
Austria 1 2 9 , 1 3 3 , 1 43 , 1 6 0, 1 6 5 D awes Plan 1 1 0 Weimar Repu blic 1 1 9 2 0
Anschluss 1 7 0, 1 7 1 3 , 2 1 8 1 9 D isarmament C on erence 1 5 5 , 1 5 7 9 , 1 9 2 what actors allowed Hitler to become a dictator?
Austro- Hungarian E m pire 83 , 8 6 , 8 8 9 , 9 0 D u C ooper, Al red 1 9 5 , 2 2 2 123 5
autarky 1 3 1 why did sup port or Nazism grow a ter the First
authoritarianism 1 05 World War? 1 1 9 2 3
Axis 46 8 , 6 0, 1 2 9 , 1 3 0, 1 43 , 1 5 5 , 1 6 5 E den, Anthony 1 9 5 , 2 01 , 2 0 3 Yo ung Plan 1 1 1
E gypt 1 3 0, 1 5 2 Germany 1 9 3 3 3 8 1 5 5 6
changing diplo matic alignments with M ussolini and
B aldwin, S tanley 1 9 2 Austria 1 6 0
B alkans 1 00 1 Fascism 8 2 3 , 89 9 0, 2 00 changing diplo matic alignments with M ussolini and
B eer Hall Putsch 1 1 0 how did Mussolini consolidate his power? 9 6 7 Japan 1 5 5 , 1 6 5
bias 2 40 impact o D Annunzio and the Fium e a air on Fo ur Year Plan 1 5 5 , 1 6 6
bibliographies 2 3 9 , 2 44 Fascism 9 1 2 Germany s challenges to the post- war settlements
B ismarck, O tto von 1 1 2 impact o economic actors on the rise o Fascism 1 933 38 1 5 7 69
B ritain 3 6 , 8 2 , 8 3 , 1 2 9 , 1 3 0, 1 3 3 , 1 81 92 3 Hossbach Mem orandum 1 5 5 , 1 6 6 7
appeaseme nt in the 1 9 3 0s 1 9 4 7 impact on Italy s oreign policy in the 1 9 3 0s 1 3 0 1 international reaction to German aggre ssion in
B ritain s gu arantee to Poland 1 80 1 March on Rome, O cto ber 1 9 2 2 9 4 5 , 1 2 0 C zechoslovakia 2 1 9 2 3
conscriptio n 1 7 0, 2 2 3 relationship betwee n Fascist Italy and Nazi international reaction to German rearm ament
declaratio n o war on Germany 1 7 0, 1 8 7 Germany 1 43 21 3 1 5
Germany 1 9 3 3 3 8 1 5 6 why did support or Fascism grow in Italy a ter the Non- Aggression Pact with Po land 1 5 9 , 1 8 1
Hoare Laval Pact 2 04 5 First World War? 9 0 1 rearmament 1 5 5 , 1 6 1 , 2 1 3 1 5
how did B ritain respond to the Italian invasion o First World War 1 4 remilitarization o the Rhineland 1 5 5 , 1 6 2 4,
Albania, 7 Ap ril 1 9 3 9 ? 2 09 Germany 1 1 0, 1 1 1 1 3 1 68 9, 21 5 1 7
outbreak o war 1 8 6 9 1 , 2 2 6 Italy 82 3 , 8 6 9 Rome B erlin Axis and the Anti- C omintern Pact
reaction o B ritain and F rance to Hitler s actions Japan 2 0 , 2 1 1 5 5, 1 65
1 9 3 9 1 9 40 2 2 7 Fium e 8 3 , 9 0 1 , 1 01 S aar plebiscite January 1 9 3 5 1 5 5 , 1 6 0 1
reaction to Ge rman aggression in C ze choslovakia impact o D Annunzio and the Fium e a air on S p anish C ivil War 1 6 4 5
220 3 Fascism 9 1 2 timeline 1 5 5
relations with Italy 1 9 3 3 40 1 2 9 , 1 3 0, 1 3 3 , 1 3 7 , Four Po wer Pact 1 9 3 3 1 2 9 , 1 3 2 3 withdrawal rom the D isarm ament C on erence
1 3 9 , 1 45 , 1 5 1 France 8 2 , 83 , 1 1 0, 1 3 0, 1 45 , 1 8 1 1 55, 1 57 9
response to Italian invasion o Abyssinia 2 03 4 declaration o war o n Germany 1 7 0, 1 8 7 Germany 1 9 3 8 40 1 7 0
what was the reaction o B ritain to Italian Franco -S o viet Mutual Assistance Tre aty 1 6 2 , 2 1 4 Anschluss 1 9 3 8 1 7 1 3
expansion in 1 9 40? 2 0 9 1 0 Germany 1 9 3 3 3 8 1 5 6 challenging the p ost- war settlement a ter 1 9 3 7
B urma Road 6 0, 7 4 Hoare Laval Pact 2 0 4 5 1 71 9
how did France resp ond to the Italian invasion o C hamberlain s interventio n in S udetenland crisis
Albania, 7 April 1 9 3 9 ? 2 09 1 77 9
C atholic C hurch 8 5 , 8 7 , 9 3 , 9 7 invasio n o the Ruhr 1 9 2 3 1 2 0, 1 5 6 changing international alignments and the Pact o
C atholic Party 8 3 , 8 5 , 9 1 outbreak o war 1 86 9 1 S teel, May 1 9 3 9 1 8 1 2
causatio n 2 3 7 reaction o B ritain and France to Hitler s actio ns German expansion into Poland 1 8 0 1
C hamberlain, Neville 1 8 0, 1 9 4, 2 2 6 , 2 2 7 1 9 3 9 1 9 40 2 2 7 international reaction to Anschluss 2 1 8 1 9
appeaseme nt in the 1 9 3 0s 1 9 6 reaction to German aggression in C zechoslovakia liquidation o C zechoslovakia 1 7 9 8 0
B erchtesgarde n, 1 5 S eptember 1 9 3 8 1 7 7 21 9 May C risis 1 9 3 8 1 7 5 6
Godesberg, 2 2 2 3 S ep tember 1 9 3 8 1 7 7 relations with Italy 1 9 3 3 40 1 3 0, 1 45 , 1 5 1 , 1 5 2 Nazi S oviet Pact 1 83 6
Munich C on erence, 2 9 S eptember 1 9 3 8 1 7 8 9 , response to Italian invasion o Abyssinia 2 03 4 outbreak o war 1 86 9 1 , 2 2 6
229 31 why did France align its oreign po licy to B ritain s reaction o B ritain and France to Hitler s actions
change 2 3 7 policy o ap peasement in the 1 9 3 0 s? 1 9 7 8 1 9 3 9 1 9 40 2 2 7
S u detenland crisis 1 7 4 end o the appeasement o Mussolini s Italy 2 09 1 0 1 32
S u detenland Germ ans 1 7 4 5 German aggression in C zechoslovakia 2 1 9 2 3 why did Italy invade Albania in April 1 9 3 9 ? 1 46 7
time line 1 7 0 German rearmam ent 2 1 3 1 5 why did Italy j oin the war in Ju ne 1 9 40? 1 5 0 2
Giolitti, Giovanni 8 2 , 8 5 , 87 , 9 1 historical deb ate on S e co nd World War 2 2 7 3 1 why did Italy remain non- belligerent in 1 9 3 9 ? 1 5 0
G ring, Herm ann 1 6 1 , 1 6 6 Hitler s dem ands regarding Poland 2 2 3 why did Mussolini invade Ab yssinia in O ctober
Grandi, D ino 1 3 2 , 1 46 impact o S oviet oreign p olicy on the international 1 935?
Great B ritain see B ritain re sponse to the expansionist powers 1 9 9 2 00
Great D epression 1 1 1 impact o US oreign policy on the international
impact o the Gre at D epressio n on the Nazi Party re sponse to the expansionist powers 1 9 9 Japan 1 4, 8 2 , 1 49
1 21 2 invasion o Poland 2 2 6 democracy 2 2 , 40
Greece 1 3 0, 1 5 2 , 1 8 1 Italian invasion o Abyssinia 2 01 9 , 2 1 0 1 1 economic crisis in the 1 9 2 0s 2 3
Guo mindang ( GMD ) 3 1 , 6 0 , 8 3 4 negotiations with S oviet Union 2 2 3 5 First S ino Japane se War 1 8 1 9
see C hina: Nationalist Party reaction o B ritain and France to Hitle r s actions oreign policy 2 3
1 9 3 9 1 9 40 2 2 7 how did Japan bene t rom the First World War?
remilitarization o the Rhineland 2 1 5 1 7 20
Haile S elassie o Abyssinia 1 3 7 , 2 01 , 2 03 , 2 04, 2 06 S panish C ivil War 2 1 7 1 8 how pe ace ul was Japan in the 1 9 2 0s? 2 1 2
hegem ony 1 3 1 timeline 1 9 2 3 Japan a ter 1 9 00 1 9 2 0
Heinlein, Konrad 1 7 5 weaknesses o the Leagu e o Nations 1 9 8 Japanese immigratio n to the US A 2 1
Himm ler, Heinrich 1 2 0 Inukai Tsuyoshi 2 9 , 40, 41 Manchu ria, C hina 1 9
Hirohito o Jap an 1 5 , 2 3 , 3 4, 5 3 investigation 2 43 4 nationalism and militarism 1 5 1 7 , 1 8 1 9 , 1 9 2 0,
histo rical evidence 2 3 9 41 Italy 3 7 , 8 2 3 2 3 5 , 3 1 2 , 3 4 6 , 3 9 42 , 46
Hitler, Adol 8 2 , 9 7 , 1 1 0 1 1 , 1 2 9 , 1 3 0, 1 5 5 6 , 1 7 0 am bitions in the B alkans 1 00 1 Peace Preservation Law 1 5 , 2 2
Anglo- Polish Tre aty 1 81 B attle o C apo retto 8 3 , 1 0 5 results o the First World War or Japan 2 1
Anschluss 1 9 3 8 1 7 1 3 , 2 1 8 1 9 B attle o Vittorio Veneto 8 3 , 1 05 S hogu nate 1 6
C ham be rlain s intervention in S u detenland crisis how did M ussolini consolidate his po wer? 9 6 7 timeline 1 8 5 3 1 9 2 6 1 4 1 5
1 93 5 how success ul was Musso lini s oreign policy in the what problems did Japan ace in the 1 9 2 0s? 2 2 4
changing diplomatic alignments in E urope a ter 1 9 2 0s? 1 00 4 Japan 1 9 3 1 41 3 0, 5 6 , 1 9 2
1 933 1 56 7 impact o D Annunzio and the Fiume a air on cause s o expansion 3 0 4
changing diplomatic alignments with Mussolini and F ascism 9 1 2 descent into the D ark Valley 3 9
Austria 1 6 0 impact o dom estic econom ic issues o n oreign economic concerns le ading up to Pearl Harbo r
Fo ur Year Plan 1 5 5 , 1 6 6 p olicies 9 8 1 00 49 5 4
Hitler takes ove r E urope 1 87 9 impact o economic actors o n the rise o Fascism economic crisis 3 2 4
Hitler s actions a ter the declaration o war 1 87 92 3 Gre ater E ast Asia C o - Prosperity S phere 2 9 , 47
Hossb ach Memorandum 1 5 5 , 1 6 6 7 impact o First World War 88 9 impact o nationalism and militarism on Japan s
how signi cant is the Hossbach M emorandum as Italian Nationalist Association 8 6 oreign policy 3 4 6
evidence o Hitler s oreign p olicy obj ectives? lack o national identity 8 5 impact o the war in E urope 46
1 67 long- term causes o exp ansion 84 Imperial Rule Assistance Associatio n 2 9 , 46
impact o the First World War on Hitler s oreign long- term weaknesses o Liberal Italy 8 5 6 invasio n o Indo -C hina 2 9 , 46 , 47 , 49 5 0, 5 2 , 6 0
policy 1 1 6 1 9 M arch on Rome, O ctober 1 9 2 2 9 4 5 , 1 2 0 Kodo-ha 2 9 , 3 1 , 40
impact o the Gre at D epression on the Nazi Party relations with the S oviet Union 1 02 3 Kwantung Army 1 4, 3 1 , 3 4 6 , 3 8 , 41
1 21 2 relations with western E u ro pean powers 1 01 2 Leagu e o Nation s response to events in Manchuria
impact o the Munich Putsch o 1 9 2 3 on the success S ocialist Party ( PS I) 8 2 , 8 3 , 8 5 , 8 6 7 1 931 3 6 61 6
o Nazism 1 2 0 1 Triple E ntente 83 , 8 6 7 Manchu ria crisis 3 4 9
international reaction to Hitler s demands re garding what actors infuenced Mu ssolini s oreign policy? militarists take control 1 9 40 46
Poland 2 2 3 97 8 Minse ito Party 2 9 , 3 8
liquidation o C zechoslovakia 1 7 9 8 0 why did su pport or F ascism grow in Italy a ter the Mukden incident 3 4 5 , 42 , 6 0 , 6 3 5
May C risis 1 9 3 8 1 7 5 6 F irst World War? 9 0 1 Natio nal Mobilization B ill 1 9 3 8 2 9
outb reak o war 1 8 6 7 , 2 2 6 working- class protest 8 5 Neutrality Pact with the S ovie t Union 2 9 , 46 7
rearm ament 1 5 5 , 1 6 1 Italy 1 9 3 3 40 1 2 9 Pearl Harbor and the outbreak o war 49 5 4
remilitarization o the Rhineland 1 5 5 , 1 6 2 4, changing diplomatic alignm ents in E uro pe a ter perspectives o Japanese historians 5 3
1 68 9, 21 5 1 7 1 933 1 32 4 political crises and the growing infuence o the
S p anish C ivil War 1 6 4 5 changing diplomatic alignm ents in E uro pe a ter military 3 1 2 , 3 9 42
steps to dictatorship 1 2 3 5 1 9 3 6 1 43 political instability in C hina 3 1
S ude te nland crisis 1 7 4 5 changing diplomatic alignm ents in E uro pe a ter Rape o Nanking 43 4
withdrawal rom the D isarmament C on erence 1 9 3 9 1 49 5 0 reaction o the US A to the attack o n Pearl Harbor
1 55, 1 57 9 domestic economic issues 1 3 1 2 75 6
Hitler, Adol Mein Kampf 1 1 7 , 1 2 0 , 1 2 5 6 domestic infu ences on Italian oreign p olicy resp onse o C hina to events a ter 1 9 3 2 83 5
Gro ss D eutschland 1 1 7 1 935 39 1 34 resp onse o the League o Nations and E uro pe to
race and living space ( Lebensraum ) 1 1 7 1 8 end o Italian participation in collective se curity events a ter 1 9 3 2 6 7
natural enemies and allies 1 1 8 1 9 1 43 5 resu lts o the S ino- Japanese War or Japan 44 6
Hitler, Adol Zweites Buch 1 2 5 6 events o invasion o Abyssinia 1 3 7 8 , 1 5 3 4 S ino Japanese War o 1 9 3 7 2 9 , 42 3
Hoare- Laval Pact 1 3 7 , 1 6 2 , 1 9 2 , 2 04 5 o reign po licy 1 9 3 5 3 9 1 3 4 41 timeline 2 9 3 0, 6 0
Hossbach C on ere nce 1 7 0, 1 7 1 o reign po licy in the 1 9 3 0s 1 3 0 4 Tosei-ha 3 9 , 40 , 41
Hossbach Memo randum 1 5 5 , 1 6 6 7 how did B ritain and France respond to the invasion trade em bargoes 6 0, 7 4 5
how signi cant is the Hossbach M emorandum as o Albania, 7 April 1 9 3 9 ? 2 09 Tripartite Axis Pact 46 8, 6 0
evidence o Hitler s oreign po licy obj ectives? how did Italy take over Alb ania? 1 47 9 US p re ssure on Japan 7 4 5
1 67 how did the US A respond to the invasio n o US A s actions with regard to Japan 1 9 3 0 41 7 0 1 ,
hyperinfation 1 1 0, 1 2 0 Abyssinia? 2 0 8 9 77 8
intervention in the S panish C ivil War 1 9 3 6 3 9 US A s response to events 1 9 3 7 3 8 7 1 2
1 41 5 US A s response to Japanese actions 1 9 3 1 3 7 7 0 1
imperialism 1 5 invasion o Abyssinia 2 01 9 , 2 1 0 1 1 why did the US A change its p olicy towards Japan
internal assessm ent 2 3 2 3 Italy and the S econd World War 1 49 5 2 a ter 1 9 3 8 ? 7 2 4
nal to uches 2 46 Italy s role during S udetenland crisis in S eptember Jiang Jieshi 3 1 , 3 4, 3 7 8, 44, 45 , 47 , 6 7 , 6 8, 6 9 , 7 3
getting started 2 3 5 1 9 3 8 1 45 6 ( C hiang Kai- shek)
identi cation and evaluation o sources 2 3 9 43 M ussolini s actions in the war up to 1 9 41 1 5 2
investigation 2 43 4 p erspectives o E uropean historians 1 5 2
plan o investigation 2 3 8 results o intervention in the S panish C ivil War 1 42 Kapp Putsch 1 1 0, 1 1 9
refection 2 45 6 results o the Abyssinian War or collective security Ke llogg- B riand Pact 6 1 , 7 1 , 1 02 , 1 1 1 , 1 3 2
research 2 3 8 9 1 3 9 41 Korea 1 6 , 1 9
sele cting a topic and appropriate questions 2 3 5 6 results o the Abyssinian War or Italy 1 3 9 anne xation by Japan 1 5 , 2 0, 2 3 , 2 7
submitting your b ibliography 2 43 results o the international response to the Kuo mintang 3 1 , 6 0, 6 7 8
teacher, peer and sel - assessme nt tool 2 3 4 5 Abyssinian crisis 2 05 7 see C hina: Nationalist Party
using thinking concepts to ormu late good timeline 1 2 9 3 0 Kwantung Army 1 4, 3 1 , 3 4 6 , 3 8 , 41
questions 2 3 6 8 what was the re action o B ritain to Italian
international re spo nse to aggre ssion 1 9 3 5 40 1 9 2 expansion in 1 9 40? 2 09 1 0
Anschluss 2 1 8 1 9 who controlle d Italian oreign policy in the 1 9 3 0 s? League o Nations 3 6 , 3 7 , 6 0, 6 1 , 1 9 2 3
Germany 1 1 0, 1 5 5 o Nazism 1 2 0 1 Italy 1 05 9
international response to aggression in the 1 93 0s 1 98 Night o the Long Knives 1 2 0, 1 2 4 Japan 2 5 8
Italy 1 3 0, 1 3 7 , 1 3 9 , 1 43 relationship betwee n Fascist Italy and Nazi Japan 1 9 3 1 41 5 7 8 , 7 8 8 0
organization and aims o the League o Nations 62 3 Germany 1 43 sources 2 3 9 41
response to events in Manchuria 6 1 6 , 1 9 2 S A ( S turmabteilung) 1 2 0, 1 2 4 analysing so urce s 2 42 3
response to Italian invasion o Abyssinia 2 03 4 S S ( S chutzsta el) 1 2 0, 1 2 4 selecting source s 2 41 2
response to Japan s po licies a ter 1 9 3 2 6 7 steps to dictatorship 1 2 3 5 values and lim itations asso ciated with seco ndary
response to the Mukden incident 6 3 5 why did support or Nazism grow a ter the F irst sources 5 8
liberal democracy 8 5 World War? 1 1 9 2 3 S oviet Unio n 2 9 , 46 7 , 1 6 5
Liberal Italy 1 8 7 0 1 9 2 3 85 Nurem berg Trials 1 6 7 Franco- S oviet Mutual Assistance Treaty 1 6 2 , 2 1 4
Libya 1 02 , 1 2 9 , 1 5 2 im pact o S oviet oreign policy on the international
Lithuania 1 7 0, 1 8 0 re spo nse to the expansionist powers 1 9 9 2 00
Little E ntente 1 01 , 1 5 6 orthodox viewp oints 2 40 Nazi S oviet Pact 1 9 3 9 1 49 , 1 7 0, 1 83 5
Lloyd Ge orge, D avid 1 1 3 , 1 1 4 negotiations with S oviet Union 2 2 3 5
Locarno Treaties 8 3 , 1 01 2 , 1 3 2 , 1 3 3 , 1 6 5 relations with Italy 1 02 3 , 1 3 0
Low, D avid 1 9 5 Pact o S teel 1 9 3 9 1 3 0, 1 49 5 0, 1 7 0, 1 8 1 2 S panish C ivil War 1 9 3 6 3 9 1 2 9 , 1 41
Lytton C o mmission 6 0 Pape r 1 2 3 im pact on Hitler s positio n in E urope 1 6 5
docum ent analysis 1 3 Italy s intervention 1 9 3 6 3 9 1 41 5
how sho uld I distribute my time in the Nazi Germany 1 6 4 5
Macedonia 8 3 examinatio n? 1 2 1 3 Non- Interventio n C ommitte e 2 1 7 1 8
Maginot Line 1 5 6 how to approach so urce questio ns 4 1 2 S partacist u prising 1 1 0, 1 1 9
Manchuria 1 9 , 3 1 , 3 2 3 markb ands 1 0, 1 1 S talin, Jo se 1 5 6 , 2 00, 2 2 4
Manchuria crisis 3 4 5 what can you expe ct on Pape r 1 ? 3 4 S timson No n- Recognitio n D octrine 6 0, 7 0 1
impact o League o Natio n s ailure to take action Pearl Harbor, Hawaii 2 9 , 6 0 , 6 9 S tresa C on e rence 1 2 9 , 1 3 3 4, 1 5 5 , 1 9 2 , 2 1 4 1 5
66 reactio n o the US A to the attack on Pearl Harb or S tresemann, Gustav 1 1 1 , 1 2 1
League o Nations response to eve nts in Manchu ria 75 6 S udetenland C risis 1 45 6 , 1 7 0, 1 7 4
61 6 why did Japan attack Pearl Harbo r on 7 D ecem ber C hamberlain s interventio n 1 9 3 5
Manchuku o 2 9 , 3 7 , 45 1 9 41 ? 49 5 2 S u detenland Germans 1 7 4 5
results or Japan s international relations 3 6 7 Perry, Matthew 1 4, 1 6 , 2 4
results or Manchuria and C hina 3 7 perspectives 2 3 7
results or the Japanese government 3 8 9 Italy 1 9 3 3 40 1 5 2 Third International 1 43
Mao Ze dong 3 1 , 3 7 , 45 Japan 1 9 3 1 1 9 41 5 3 Third Re ich 1 1 8 , 1 2 0
Marco Polo B ridge , B eij ing 2 9 , 42 3 , 44, 5 3 Poland 1 3 0, 1 5 0, 1 5 5 totalitarianism 9 6 7
C hina s actions ollowing Marco Polo B ridge international reaction to Hitler s demands regarding Treaty o Kanagawa 1 4, 1 6
incident 6 0 , 6 7 9 Poland 2 2 3 Treaty o London 8 3 , 8 6 , 9 0, 2 1 4
Marinetti, Filippo 8 6 international reaction to the invasion o Poland 2 2 6 Treaty o Portsmouth 1 5
Matteotti, Giacomo 9 6 , 1 03 Non- Aggression Pact with Germany 1 5 9 , 1 8 1 Treaty o Tie ntsin 1 4
May C risis 1 9 3 8 1 7 5 6 Treaty o Versailles
Memel, Lithuania 1 7 0, 1 8 0 Germany 1 1 0, 1 1 3 1 5 , 1 5 6 , 1 5 7 6 9
militarism 1 5 , 1 05 Rapallo Treaty 1 9 2 2 1 2 1 , 1 6 1 Italy 8 3 , 9 0 1
Monro e D octrine 3 8 re erences Japan 1 5 , 2 1
Morocco 1 02 Germany 1 2 8 Triple E ntente 83 , 8 6 7
Mukden incident 3 4 5 , 42 , 6 0 Germany 1 9 3 3 3 8 1 6 9
response o the League o Nations 6 3 4 Germany 1 9 3 8 40 1 9 1
why did the League not take stronger action against international respo nse to aggression 2 1 2 , 2 3 1 UK see B ritain
Japan? 6 4 5 italy 1 0 9 US A 3 6 , 1 3 0
Munich C on erence 1 9 3 8 1 3 0, 1 45 6 , 1 7 8 9 , 2 00, italy 1 9 3 3 40 1 5 4 Germany 1 9 3 3 3 8 1 5 6 7
2 2 4, 2 2 9 3 1 Japan 2 8 ho w did the US A respond to the invasion o
Munich Pu tsch 1 2 0 1 Japan 1 9 3 1 41 5 9 , 8 1 Ab yssinia? 2 08 9
Mussolini, B enito 8 2 3 , 8 4, 8 5 , 1 2 9 , 1 3 0, 1 3 2 , 1 8 1 refection 2 45 6 im pact o US oreign policy on international
Anschluss 1 2 9 , 1 3 3 , 1 43 , 1 6 0, 1 6 5 , 1 7 2 revisionism 2 40 respo nse to e xpansionist po wers 1 9 9
changing diplomatic alignme nts in E urop e a ter Rhine land 1 5 5 , 1 6 2 4, 1 6 8 9 , 2 1 5 1 7 Japanese immigration to the US A 2 1
1 933 1 32 4 Ribb entrop, Joachim von 1 49 , 1 6 1 Neutrality Acts 7 2 , 1 9 2 , 1 9 3 , 1 9 9
changing diplomatic alignme nts with Hitler and Rom ania 1 5 6 , 1 8 1 reaction o the US A to the attack on Pearl Harbor
Austria 1 6 0 Rom e B erlin Axis 1 3 0, 1 43 , 1 5 5 , 1 6 5 75 6
did Musso lini create a totalitarian state? 9 6 7 Rom me l, E rwin 1 5 2 US pressure o n Japan 7 4 5
end o the ap peasement o Mussolini s Italy 2 09 1 0 Roo se velt, Franklin D . 1 9 2 , 1 9 9 , 2 08 US A s actions with regard to Japan 1 9 3 0 41 5 4 5 ,
how did M ussolini conso lidate his power? 9 6 Ru hr 1 1 0, 1 2 0, 1 5 6 77 8
how success ul was Mussolini s ore ign policy in the Ru ssia 1 4 US A s response to events 1 9 3 7 3 8 7 1 2
1 9 2 0s? 1 0 0 4 see S oviet Union US A s response to Japanese actions 1 9 3 1 3 7 7 0 1
Il Popolo d Italia 8 2 Ru sso- Japanese War, 1 9 04 0 5 1 5 , 1 9 why did the US A change its policy towards Japan
impact o domestic issues on the oreign policies o a ter 1 9 3 8? 7 2 4
Italy 9 8 1 00 USS Pan ay 6 0, 7 2
international response to Italian invasio n 2 01 9 , S aar p lebiscite 1 9 3 5 1 5 5 , 1 6 0 1 US S R see S oviet Union
21 0 1 1 S chuschnigg, Kurt 1 6 0, 1 6 5 , 1 7 1 2
Italy s role during S udetenland crisis in S eptembe r S eco nd World War 6 9
1 9 3 8 1 45 6 Hitler takes over E u rope 1 8 7 9 Victor E mmanuel III o Italy 8 6 , 9 5 , 9 7 , 1 3 4, 1 49 , 1 6 5
March on Ro me, O ctober 1 9 2 2 9 4 5 , 1 2 0 how im portant was appeasement as a cause o the Vietnam 2 9
Mussolini s actions in the war up to 1 9 41 1 5 2 S econd World War? 2 2 7 3 1
S ocialist Party ( PS I) 8 2 , 86 7 Italy 1 9 3 3 40 1 49 5 2
what actors infuenced Mu ssolini s ore ign policy? outbreak o war 1 86 9 1 , 2 2 6 Wall S treet C rash 1 1 1
97 8 outco me or Japan 5 4 Washington C on erence 1 9 2 1 1 5 , 2 1
why did Italy j oin the war in June 1 9 40? 1 5 0 2 phoney war 1 87 Washington Treaty S ystem 2 1 2 , 2 3 , 3 6 , 2 1 4
why did Italy remain non-b elligerent in 1 9 3 9 ? 1 5 0 reactio n o the US A to the attack on Pearl Harb or Weimar Re pub lic 1 1 9 2 0
why did Mussolini invade Abyssinia in O ctober 75 6 Wilhelm II o Germany 1 1 0 , 1 1 1 , 1 1 2
1 935? 1 35 6 S hanghai 2 9 , 3 7 , 3 8 Wilson, Woodrow 1 1 3
S hidehara Kij uro 2 1 , 2 2 Wilson s 1 4 points 1 1 3
oppo sition to S hidehara s internationalism 2 3
Nanj ing ( Nanking) , C hina 43 4 S ibe rian E xpedition 1 5
nationalism 1 5 , 1 05 signi cance 2 3 7 Young Plan 1 1 1
Nazi S oviet Pact 1 9 3 9 1 49 , 1 7 0, 1 8 3 5 S ino- Japanese War 1 4, 1 6 1 7 , 1 8 1 9 , 2 4 Yugoslavia 8 3 , 1 01 , 1 5 2 , 1 5 6
two contrasting views o the Nazi S o viet Pact Rape o Nanking 43 4
1 85 6 S ino Jap anese War o 1 9 3 7 2 9 , 42 6
Nazism 1 1 0 1 1 S ocial D arwinism 1 05 , 1 1 7 1 8 Zhang Zuolin 3 1 , 3 4, 6 7
imp act o the Great D epre ssion on the Nazi Party S ocial Unity 1 05 Zhou E nlai 6 7
121 2 source help and hints Zog o Alb ania 1 01 , 1 47 9
imp act o the M unich Putsch o 1 9 2 3 on the success Germany 1 2 7 8
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