Tuesday, November 01, 2005

Adolf Hitler Leader of Nazi Germany

We now have arms to such an extent as the world has never seen before. In the summer of 1938, German Chancellor Adolf Hitler began to openly support the demands of Germans living in the Sudetenland region of Czechoslovakia for closer ties with Nazi Germany. The Czechoslovakian government opposed this threat to its sovereignty, especially after Hitler demanded the immediate cession of the Sudetenland region to Germany in September. By September 23, Czechoslovakia had called for mobilization and war seemed imminent. Three days later, Hitler addressed a Nazi rally at Berlin's Sportpalast stadium, and reassured the German people that if war came the German Wehrmacht would be victorious. Britain and France, ill-prepared for the outbreak of hostilities, seemed to be in agreement, and on September 29, British and French prime ministers Neville Chamberlain and Edouard Daladier traveled to Munich, Germany, to meet with Hitler and seek a resolution to the crisis. The leaders of the great European democracies settled on appeasement of Hitler, and on September 30 signed the Munich Pact, thus giving Czechoslovakia away to German conquest. Daladier abhorred the agreement, but Chamberlain was elated, and upon returning to London praised the Munich Pact for bringing ‘peace in our time.’ The next day, Germany annexed the Sudetenland, and by March of 1939, nearly all of Czechoslovakia was under German control. On September 1, 1939, fifty-three German army divisions invaded Poland despite British and French threats to intervene on the nation's behalf. Two days later, Britain and France solemnly declared war against Germany, and the European phase of World War II had begun


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