Origins of World War II

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					Origins of World
War II
            Hitler’s Foreign Policy Aims
   Hitler sought to unite the German people
       “protecting the 10 million Germans living outside the Reich”
   In 1935, Hitler declared that Germany was no longer
    bound by the Versailles treaty and began to rearm, and
    used the Spanish Civil War of 1936-39 as a training
    ground for the new troops.
       Germany and Italy supplied Franco and the Soviet Union
        supplied the Spanish republic
   In 1936, Hitler reoccupied the Rhineland, taking away the
    buffer zone between Germany and France.
   In 1938 he annexed Austria bringing about Anschluss or
Guernica by Pablo Picasso
         Where Were the Allied
   The U.S. had rejected the Peace of Paris and was
    caught up in the Depression; Russia was consolidating
    its revolution; Britain was caught up in the Depression;
    France alone was left to hold Germany down.
   Also, Nazi propaganda in the U.S. and Britain portrayed
    Hitler as the best check on Communist Russia.
   The British and French feared a new war and went to
    great lengths to avoid confrontation. France built
    immense fortifications, called the Maginot Line, but
    lacked the mobile strike force necessary to counter an
    aggressive Germany.

   As a result, Britain came up with the policy of
       Giving in to Germany in the hope that a satisfied Hitler
        would not drag Europe through another world war.
       They thought Hitler simply wanted a peaceful revision of
        the Versailles Treaty and that he could be contained
        through concessions.
   Czechoslovakia
       A little over 3 million ethnic Germans lived in the
        Sudetenland of Czechoslovakia.
       British Prime Minister Neville Chamberlain agreed to meet
        with Hitler to discuss the matter.
          Czechoslovakia: The Apex
          of Appeasement
   At the Munich Conference of 1938, Britain and
    France (not Czechoslovakia) agreed to the German
    occupation of the Sudetenland.
       Deprived of the Sudetenland, Czechoslovakia could
        not defend against a German attack. Hitler took
        Czechoslovakia in March 1939.
   The take-over of Czechoslovakia was different than
    the other conquests. This was not about German self-
    determination it was about hegemony or control of
   With the end of Czech independence, Hitler’s intent to
    dominate Europe was apparent.
       Poland: The Final Crisis

   Hitler next turned his attention to Poland. He
    demanded the return of the city of Danzig and use
    of the Polish corridor. Poland refused and France
    and Great Britain warned that they would support
    Poland if attacked.
   On May 22, 1939, Hitler and Mussolini entered into
    a pact, promising mutual aid in the event of war.
   On August 23, 1939, Germany and Russia signed
    a nonaggression pact, giving Hitler the green-
    light to invade Poland.
           The Nazi Blitzkrieg
   Poland
       On September 1, 1939, German troops invaded Poland.
        Britain and France declared war two days later.
       On September 17, Soviet troops invaded Poland from
        the east.
       In less than a month, the Nazi blitzkrieg (lightning
        war) had captured Poland, which surrendered on
        September 27.
   For Hitler, the conquest of Poland was only the
    beginning. He then captured Denmark and Norway.
   In May of 1940, German troops invaded Belgium,
    Holland, and Luxembourg and marched into France.
      Japanese Expansion
   Japan is expanding in the Pacific in search of
    raw materials.
   Problems:
      U.S. insisted of Japan’s withdrawal from
      Japan’s alliance with Germany and Italy
       (Tripartite Pact)
   Negotiations over commercial treaty
   U.S. had broken Japanese diplomatic codes
      Japan wanted Indochina
           Oil Embargo
   U.S. freezes Japanese assets and starts embargo
      U.S. cuts off sale of airplane fuel to Japan and cuts
       back on other natural resources.
      Great Britain and the Dutch East Indies also
       participate in the embargo.
   Japan cut off from its major source of oil
       66.4 percent of imports came from Anglo-Americans
       Over 80 percent of its oil came from U.S.
   Japanese Navy’s oil reserves (2 years)
      Planned for war after August 1, 1941
      The longer Japan waited the worse its economic
       and military situation would become.
       Decision for War
   “Hull Note” delivered on Nov. 26, 1941
      Basically restated U.S. demands
      Prime Minister Tōjō sees note as ultimatum and
       and proof that further diplomacy was futile.
      Japanese public opinion was firmly behind the
       decision for war.
   Late Nov., 1941 – U.S. learns Japanese
    Armada leaves Japan / lost track of and
    thought they were headed to attack the
   Dec. 6, Japan breaks off negotiations, refusing to
    leave China
        December 7, 1941

   Japan attacks Pearl Harbor in Hawaii
       U.S. fleet caught unprepared
       2400 sailors died, 1200 wounded,18 ships sunk,
        and 160 aircraft damaged and 200 destroyed.
       Only the aircraft carriers, by chance on maneuvers,
        escaped the worst naval defeat in American
   Later the same day, Japan attacks the
    Philippines, Guam, and Midway and attacks
    British forces in Hong Kong and the Malay
    Peninsula (Singapore)
    Global War

 FDR – “a date that will live in infamy.”
 Dec. 8, 1941 - U.S. declares war on Japan

 Germany and Italy declare war on U.S.

 With the Japanese attack on the U.S.,
  World War II became a global war.
 The U.S. would enter the war against the
  Axis powers and concentrate on Europe.