The Causes of
World War II
What Caused World War II?
There were 5 causes that lead to the rise of
Hitler and the start of World War II
Cause 1: The Harsh Terms of the
Treaty of Versailles
Treaty of Versailles included:
Germany accepts responsibility for the war
Germany pays war reparations to pay for damages it
Germany must reduce its army to no more then
Germany may not have an air force or submarines
and only permitted 6 ships
Germany loses territory including coal rich areas on
the boarder with France
Germany must lose territory to Poland &
acknowledge Poland’s independence
Cause 2: Economic Problems
Resulting From Depression
Inflation – The German government borrowed lots of
money to finance WWI. To repay this debt, the
country simply printed more money.
This devalued the currency and caused massive inflation
Ex. In 1922 300 marks bought 1 American dollar. Only a year later
it took 50,000 marks to buy the same dollar
Economic Problems resulting in the
Huge inflation caused the Great Depression to have a
more serious impact on Germany
Reparation payments Germany was required to make combined with
the problems of the Great Depression, the German people suffered
Cause 3: The Failure of the League of
The League of Nations was an international organization
created by the victors of the First World War, designed to
never allow a World War to occur again
It was a conference held in Geneva, Switzerland
It did not have armed forces so it depended on the powerful
nations to protect the world
The Failure of the League of Nations
It did not have much chance for success because it did not
have armed forces. It relied on its member’s actions to
enforce the rules.
The United States also refused to join which lowered its
Cause 4: The Rise of Fascism
Fascism is a political philosophy characterized by intense
nationalism, militarism & elitism.
Fascist governments controls all aspects of society including
political, economical and social aspects.
Fascism as a philosophy appealed to Germany in the early
1930’s because it helped the Nazi Party stand out as a strong
party with a clear mission of creating a powerful Germany
Cause 5:The Policy of Appeasement
The United Nations refused to interfere conflicts around the
world, showed countries had no wish to get involved
In the years leading up to World War II Britain and France
wanted peace &
avoided confrontations w.
both Germany and Italy.
No one wanted to fight!!!!!
Appeasement means “to
soothe, pacify, or relieve”
To Wrap It Up….
These 5 factors led to World War 2 and the
Rise of Hitler….