British Appeasement, the Treaty of Versailles and the Inevitability of World War Ii

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Abstract After War World I, the allied forces of Europe sought to usher in an era of peace by sanctioning Germany and reconciling the European nations. The Treaty of Versailles was created for this cause, however, Britain’s appeasement policies only served to strengthen Germany’s quest for lost territories and military rearmament. In the end, Adolf Hitler manipulated British appeasement policies which only served in aiding his rise to power. Hitler would go on to lead Europe and the United States into World War II. Treaty of Versailles The end of World War I was officially marked by the ratification of the Treaty of Versailles by the ‘Big Three’ world powers on June 28th, 1919. The allied interests were represented by: British Prime Minister David Lloyd George, French Premier George Clemenceau and United States president Woodrow Wilson. The Treaty of Versailles sought to weaken Germany by imposing economic, military, and geographic limits to Germany’s growth and power. While the European countries sought to blame Germany as being solely responsible for World War I, the U.S. believed that Germany should be punished in a way that would lead to reconciliation, not retribution, among the European powers. In an effort to promote such reconciliation, President Woodrow Wilson called for the creation of the League of Nations which would serve as an international peacekeeping organization. Germany signed the Treaty of Versailles under protest and eventually sought revisions to the sanctions outlined in it while, at the same time, “the US Senate rejected the Versailles settlement and vetoed U.S. membership of the League of Nations”. The peace that was sought by crafting the Versailles Treaty had failed to materialize and it was this very treaty that became a contributing factor to World War II. German Reaction to the Treaty of Versailles The German people began to
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