Although German signed the Treaty of Versailles, much to the disgrace of many Germans, admitting they were to blame it is undeniable that aggressive German foreign policy had a lot to do with the outbreak of war in Europe in 1914, but this neglects other factors that may have additionally added to the tensions leading up to the war. Many historians debate whether it was mainly Germany to blame or whether other dominant powers led them into a no-win situation. Source V, ‘Modern Germany’ by Volker Berghahn suggests that the Kaiser no longer saw foreign policy and civil war as separate issues and that they were now seen to entwine together. The mention of the 1913 Army bill that had aggravated many within the German society due to the growing distress over money and the status quo within the German political establishment, the argument over the tax burdens grew with every bill passed. These tensions started to disrupt their dual alliance with Austria-Hungary, even with a ‘Blank Cheque’ being given to them.
Rachel Kay How accurate is it to say Frederick William IV was responsible for the failure of the Frankfurt Parliament? The Frankfurt Parliament was established to create freedom of press, German citizenship for all, fair taxation, equality of political rights and to create a unified Germany. However, countries like Austria greatly opposed it. Frederick William IV could be seen as responsible for the failure of the Frankfurt Parliament because he refused to accept any form of leadership and made it clear he distrusted the ‘gentlemen of Frankfurt’. However, many other factors played a role in the demise of the Parliament such as the fact that they were ill-organised, the lack of popular support and their inability to enforce decisions.
As well as the Depression, the collapse of the Republic can be linked to a large number of factors, including the influence of the army, political instability and constitutional weaknesses. One of the most consequential outcomes of the Depression was the opportunity that it provided Hitler. A majority of the citizens lost faith and belief in the current Social Democratic government, turning instead to the confident and dynamic leader of Hitler. As Evans asserts, ‘citizens began to see in the youthful dynamism of the Nazi Party as a way out of the situation’. What Evans means by this is that the desperation of the people led them to polarising their votes and seeing radical leaders like Hitler as a solution to the mess that Germany had become.
Therefore the beginnings of democracy in Germany came in times of civil and political unrest following Germany’s defeat in WWI. During the war Germany had essentially been a military dictatorship under Hindenburg and Ludendorff, this style of government being popular among the German people. Therefore when democracy was introduced it was viewed with contempt, primarily among the conservative elites. The defeat in the war also brought about changes in how political maters were handled in Germany. Richard Evans in “the Coming of the Third Reich” argues that WWI had sanctioned the use of violence for political gain, leading to the formation of paramilitary groups that further undermined the effectiveness of the democracy.
This refusal to agree with each other and frequent 'slating' of the decisions was not the appropriate conditions for a democracy, as many people would be unhappy for a majority of proposed arrangements. It is argued that an autocracy worked better in this situation as one person was able to finalise decisions, avoiding unecessary conflicts in the Reichstag. Therefore, almost by default, Germany appeared to work as a democratic system. The year 1908 marked the event of The Hottentot Election. The Centre Party joined the SPD in voting down government plans for a railway that would ruin the lives of the colonists that had settled down in the way.
The elite undermined Weimar as a result of their traditional values and hatred of democracy. In addition, Hitler’s radical new approach to politics utilised the weaknesses in Weimar – he was charismatic and through propaganda convinced the public that he could be their saviour. During the years 1918-28 the Nazis had little impact on the political scene – apart from the failed Beer Hall Putsch, which did earn them admiration from some nationalists. However, during these years, some sections of the public were becoming increasingly disillusioned with Weimar. This was due to events like the devastating 1923 hyperinflation, and of course the Treaty of Versailles, which had tainted Weimar’s reputation from its inception.
What was the short-term significance of the 1848 revolutions and the largely successful counter-revolutions on the German states up to 1866? In the immediate aftermath of the 1848 revolutions, it may have seemed to their Liberal instigators that the “revolutionary conflagration” once consuming Germany had been well and truly put out. The traditional elites had restored their authority with ease, exposing liberal weaknesses and upholding oppression and censorship. Nonetheless, while J.P. Taylor claimed 1848 was where “German history reached its turning point and failed to turn,” the failure of the 1848 revolutions undoubtedly catalysed a German transformation. The subsequent rise of nationalism in Prussian politics and deterioration of Austro-Prussian relations ensured that, by 1866, Prussia could defeat her nearest rivals in just six weeks.
Because of the fatigue of troops and lack of supplies the bottleneck in Liege caused, the Germans had to divert East towards the River of Marne. The decision to violate Belgian neutrality ensured British intervention to protect Belgium. This presented more problems as British troops were aiding France in their conquest to expel the German belligerents. The diversion and Allied support prevented Germany from capturing France and started the Battle of Marne which ultimately caused the stalemate on the Western Front. Another cause of the stalemate on the Western Front was Germany underestimation of Russia’s mobilisation speed.
Following the Crimean war (1853-56) Austria was politically isolated and had lost some of her military might. Austria was faced with divisions in her empire and was more concerned with controlling her home front than controlling Italy. Napoleon was now willing to go to war against Austria in 1859 as the decline in Austria showed a great deal of weakness and it is debatable whether Napoleon would have taken this risk if Austria’s rule did not decline. Italy gained Lombardy at the Peace of Villafranca as France and Piedmont were able to defeat her at Magenta and Solferino due to Austria’s decline. This showed great importance as without Austria declining, it would be fair to say this would not have happened.
10th grade Social Studies assignment The failings of the democracy in Germany between 1918 and 1923 Why was the new democratic system in Germany unpopular by 1923, and how was Hitler able to take advantage of that unpopularity? After their defeat in the First World War, Germany and its government faced many harsh consequences which had a great impact on the entire country and its political system. Each consequence created a substantial change in German history which made a chain of events that led to the rein of Adolf Hitler. Because the new democratic system proved to be unsuccessful, the people of Germany blamed their government and after that, things began to get chaotic and everyone suffered. The problems began after the 1st World War, and after the German government signed the papers at the Treaty of Versailles, agreeing to its conditions and punishments, the government was very much resented by the people.