World War 2

Nazi Party Rally c1935

Causes of War 1939

The defeat of Germany in World War I was denied by more militant elements which thrived in the chaos which followed the war’s end. This led to the rise of Hitler and the Nazi Party which made no secret of its desire to expand German influence eastwards.

In 1938, Hitler demanded that the Sudetenland area of Czechoslovakia should revert to Germany. He was able to persuade the British and French Governments that this was acceptable provided he made no further demands.

Within a few months, Germany took over the rest of Czechoslovakia and threatened Poland. The British and French gave Poland a guarantee of support in case of a German attack and also demanded respect for the neutrality of Belgium and Holland. This also led to a realisation in Britain that Hitler could not be trusted and that preparations should be made for war.

Listen to Hitler