The Second World War was a massive war that was fought between twogroups of countries.
The first group was the Axis Powers, which includedGermany, Italy and Japan. The second group was the Allies, which includedBritain, France, the Soviet Union, Australia, Canada, New Zealand, India, Chinaand the United States of America. World War II was fought from 1939 to 1945,and during this time over 60 million people died. This war was the deadliestmilitary conflict in the world, but what caused this war to happen? There werethree very significant causes of World War II. The first cause was the Treatyof Versailles. This treaty was very harsh on Germany and made them go intoeconomic depression, which allowed Hitler to rise to power and take revengefrom the Allies. The second cause of the war was the vision and goals of Nazileader Adolf Hitler.
Hitler broke the Treaty of Versailles and other agreementsby invading countries and taking over land, which caused France and Britain todeclare war on Germany. The final cause of World War II was the policy ofappeasement. This policy made Hitler believe that nothing could stophim from taking land from other countries and allowedGermany to gain back it’s military power to fight a major war.
Overall, it isimportant to understand how each of these three causes led to the start ofWorld War II. The first most significant cause of World War II was the Treaty ofVersailles. After World War I, the leaders of France, Britain, United Statesand Italy wanted to punish the Germans for what they had done in the FirstWorld War. They created the Treaty of Versailles, which outlined all the thingsthat Germany had to give up and pay for.
The first major punishment the Germansreceived were reparations, which meant they had to pay for all the damage theyhad done in the First World War. Germany could not cope with theextreme costs to pay for the damage, which resulted in them printing exceededamounts of money. This eventually led to the devaluation of the German Mark.
Due to this there was a huge crash in the German economy and Germany hadentered a very dark period of time better known as the Great Depression. Duringthis time, “buying a small amount of dairy product could cost thousands of dollars,which many people didn’t have” (History on the Net, 2000). The second majorpunishment Germany received was disarmament. Germany’s army was to be reduced.The nation got a limit on how many troops they were allowed to recruit.
IfGermany didn’t obey these rules, the Allies would put their own military powersinto action. The nation could have no submarinesand no battleships larger than 10000 tons (Encyclopedia Britannica, 2017).Almost all of Germany feared for its safety after much of their military wasdisbanded. The final major punishment Germany had to go through was territorialclauses. Germany lost lots of land due to the treaty in areas along thenorthern, western and eastern borders, as well as in all the overseas colonies.When the timecame for another war, many Germans remembered the humiliation that the Allieshad put upon them. This made them very angry and made them want to fight back.
Theweak government and German fear at the time made it possible for Adolf Hitlerto be elected as the Chancellor of Germany whichofficially led the Germans to World War II. Therefore this is how the Treaty ofVersailles was one of the most significant causes of World War II. The second mostsignificant cause of World War II was the vision of Adolf Hitler. Nazi leader AdolfHitler was one of the most powerful and infamous dictators of the 20thcentury. He had a vision of Germans becoming a master race and dominating theentire world. After World War I, Hitler rose to power in the National SocialistGerman Workers Party, taking control of the German government in 1933. His maingoal was to expand geographical boundaries and form a larger Germany. At thetime, most of the population in the Sudetenland region of Czechoslovakia wasGerman.
Hitler wanted to take over Sudetenland to help him form a largerGermany. His first step was to test theEuropean powers by inserting troops into Germany’s coalmines next to France.Hitler knew that this was forbidden by the Treaty of Versailles but wanted tosee how far he could push his allies before they would push back, and they did.
In September 1938, leaders of France and Great Britain met Adolf Hitler todiscuss his demands, ultimately giving him exactly what he wanted, control overthe Sudetenland region of Czechoslovakia. In return, Hitler had to promise toleave the rest of Czechoslovakia alone, and to abandon all other furtherambitions of territorial expansions. His second step was to create more roomfor Germany to grow by taking over Poland.
Although Hitler’s General Staff gavehim multiple reasons not to attack now, his official reason was, “Germany neverhad and never will have another so capable leader as myself. Therefore we haveto start now, before I get assassinated or Germany will be lost in some otherway” (The History Learning Site, 2015). Hitler broke his pledge to the Allies andtook over the rest of Czechoslovakia, and then invaded Poland in 1939.Following this France and Great Britain officially declared war on Germany.This is how the vision and goals of Adolf Hitler were a significant cause ofthe war and led to the beginning of World War II. The third mostsignificant cause of World War II was the policy of appeasement.
The term”appeasement” means giving in to someone’s demands to maintain a level of peacein the world and avoid conflict as much as possible. Starting from 1933,Britain and France started using the policy of appeasement on many nations suchas Japan, Italy and most importantly Germany. This policy was mainly used tostop Hitler from going to war, and was based on the idea that if his reasonabledemands were satisfied, he would stop attacking countries. Appeasement was acontributing factor to the Second World War because this policy failed to stopHitler from invading and taking over other countries. The policy of appeasementmade Hitler see himself as the best, and made him believe that nothing couldstop him from taking land from other countries. This policy also allowedGermany to re-arm and gather all the military items they needed after they losteverything in the Treaty of Versailles.
Germany was then ready for anotherlarge-scale war, similar to World War I. If Britain and France had stoppedHitler from inserting troops into Germany’s coalmines next to France, which wasforbidden by the Treaty of Versailles, they could have saved everyone fromWorld War II (History on the Net, 2000). This is because at the time, theGerman troops were not powerful enough and were not fully re-armed to fight awar, therefore Britain and France could have easily won if they had challengedGermany. Hitler had also said that his troops would retreat if France andBritain were to try and stop him. Therefore, the policy of appeasement madeHitler bolder and failed to stop him from attacking other countries.
This is the third most significant cause,which led to the Second World War. In conclusion, therewere three significant causes of World War II. The three most significantcauses of this war have been thoroughly explained in this essay, but here is arecap.
First cause was the Treaty of Versailles and its impact on the Germaneconomy. Second cause was the rise of Nazi leader AdolfHitler and his vision for Germany. The last cause was the failure of the policyof appeasement that allowed Hitler to act on his vision. Although this essay explains the causes and effects of World War IIon Europe, how did the start of this deadly war impact Canada as a nation? Thiswar impacted Canada in many ways, globally, politically and economically. Canadawas globally affected because before World War II Canada held a very lowposition in the world. But during World War II more than one million Canadianmen and women served in the armed forces and more than 43,000 were killed. Canadianswere therefore left with a legacy of proud service and sacrifice during WorldWar II. Canada also became more tolerant and by agreeing to accept displaced personsor refugees from Europe, they received greater recognition globally.
Canada waspolitically affected because during the war “Canada established itself as amiddle power therefore taking a more active global role” (Canadian War Museum,2017). Canada’s troops were recognized for their many contributions to the warand accepted black and aboriginal people into their troops, which advanced thecause of civil rights in Canada. Last but not least, Canada was affectedeconomically due to “the resources and raw materials they supplied to the warallowing their economy to boom despite their debt over $10 million dollars” (CanadianWar Museum, 2017). Therefore, even though World War II was fought in Europe ithad a great impact on Canada as a nation.