Explain why Germany was bankrupt by 1923. At first, Germany’s main problem was that its government was bankrupt. The cost of the war was so great that that all of the German gold reserves had been put towards the cause. After the Weimar Republic had made the decision to surrender, The Treaty of Versailles had made things considerably worse. It deprived Germany of wealth-earning areas, such as the coalfields in Silesia.
The Weimar Republic looked to be collapsing from the beginning. All the events that finally led to the ending of democracy in Germany were seemed to be caused by the Treaty of Versailles. The loss of the war for the Germans was a huge turning point as it was seem that the Allies wanted to crush Germany. They were unable to pay the reparations, as extremists from both the right and left wing found the war guilt clause unacceptable. When the Germans had lost World War I, had a huge impact back in Germany.
This resulted in risings such as the Spartacist rising where communists fuelled by the success of the Russian revolution almost occupied nearly every major city in Germany. However, the Reichstag led by the SPD had stepped into a power that was left by the Kaiser, and as a result of this it had no real option but to accept the Versailles Treaty. The most irritating part for the German people was the to pay reparations to Britain and France. Germany's failure to pay her debt led to the invasion of the Ruhr, resulted in very little success for France but did succeed in the complete collapse of the German economy. This led to the Beer Hall Putsch in 1923 Hitler aided by General Lundendorff and a few hundred supporters marched on the Munich town hall as a pretext to a national revolution, unfortunately for Hitler this attempt failed and he was sent to prison.
To what extent did the failings of Nazi economic policy contribute to the defeat of Germany in the Second World War? There were several different factors that all had an impact on the defeat of Germany during the Second World War and the extent of which the failings of the Nazi economic policy contributed can be argued. The meagre state of the economy, through insufficient planning, did put strains on the government and this limited the full potential of the army, the production of weapons and high demand for labour. No doubt, the economy did hinder the progression of the war however I believe that there were more significant factors that contributed to the defeat of Germany. Hitler’s strategy incompetence, the Allied bombings and losing the Battle of The Atlantic were all also important factors in the defeat of Germany.
In this essay I will discuss if hyperinflation was completely caused by the Treaty of Versailles (1918-19). The Treaty of Versailles was responsible for thee suspension of the Ruhr, this was a place of great industrial power and brought in a lot of money to Germany. However when it was taken away from the Germans, there was halt in the industrial production which caused the collapse of the German economy. This meant that there were very few goods therefore the government printed the money. This lead to prices rocketing and the savings unfortunately became worthless.
A huge sum of money was being taken out of the German economy, which made it extremely difficult for Germany to compete in the trade market. This created a huge dent in the German economy and angered German citizens as they knew that they were sending huge amounts of money to the Allies. As a result of this term, there was little money left to spend on the remains of the German Military which was another hard blow. This term of the treaty was not fair at all when Germany’s existing losses are taken into account, and it really made Germany suffer during tough times. The treaty would have been far more reasonable had the reparations been made smaller.
These consequences were significant for many reasons, particularly due to their impact on society, allies and the opposition, as well as inducing the beginning of WWII. The first cause of Hitler becoming Chancellor was Germany signing the Treaty of Versailles in June of 1919. After the end of WWI, the allies forced Germany to sign a peace treaty. In this treaty Germany was forced to take the blame for the War, pay reparations (which were set at 6.6 billion pounds in April 1921) as well as reducing their army to 100,000 men, getting rid of any air force, as well as being limited to 6 battleships. Germany also lost all overseas colonies, and their boundaries within Europe were reduced, losing in total 13.5% of their territory, which included losing 7 million people to neighbouring countries.
Hitler used propaganda, elimination of the opposition, and a cult of personality to gain the support and trust of the German people in a time of economic crisis to his benefit and the rest of the world's loss. Single party states arise from a crisis, and Germany was suffering from a very large one at that time. The end of World War I in 1918 had left the economic state in shambles, and the loss struck the German people hard. Furthermore, the Treaty of Versailles the following year resulted in the demilitarisation and many cuts from German land and territory. Hitler criticized the carving up of Europe by the "Big Four" (the US, UK, France and Italy), stating that the Germans were the "master race".
Germanys list of problems at this time was only growing. Losing WW1 caused many problems in itself as one might expect, never mind the Treaty of Versailles that was to follow. The most prominent socio-economic effects were most naturally the casualties, 2 million Germans were killed and a further 6 million were injured, also the increasing number of civilian deaths due to hypothermia and starvation. The reason these deaths increased, was due to food and fuel shortages caused by the cold winter of 1916-17. In these winter months there were signs of the country’s morale and unity breaking, it was not helped when Germany was hit with an influenza epidemic, wiping out 20-40 million, the resistance to the disease was lowered due to decline in living conditions.
The Treaty of Versailles left the Germans feeling guilty, humiliated, and resentful. The German people have a strong sense of national pride and now they were humiliated, they were in ruins. The treaty destroyed their military and made them pay war reparation therefore causing inflation and loss of jobs. Many Germans were bitterly disappointed by the treaty and this disappointment sparked the lasting bitterness that would