Appeasement, A Foreign Policy

2236 Words Jul 30th, 2014 9 Pages
Appeasement, a foreign policy particularly prevalent in the period of time leading up until the outbreak of World War Two, undoubtedly played a role in the ignition of the second world war, however the extent if this role and the impact it had a cause for the war is debatable. Appeasement was a policy employed as a preventative measure to stop the outbreak of war, at a time when the horrors of the First World War were still affecting European society, and involved making concessions to the opposition, in this case Adolf Hitler and Nazi Germany. Whilst it is clear that Appeasement was a failure as it did not manage to prevent the outbreak of another war, some historians argue that it in fact was one of the causes of the war. This aspect of the debate was ignited in 1961 by notable historian A.J.P. Taylor, when he asserted1 that the outbreak of War in Europe in 1939 was as much the fault of the politicians of Europe and their persistence with Appeasement, which gradually allowed Hitler and Nazi Germany more freedom then the terms dictated in the Treaty of Versailles and eventually paved the way for militarization and the outbreak of war, as it was in fact Nazi Germany’s. The most commonly accepted views of Appeasement are that of Historians such as Norman Rich who asserted2 that Nazi ideology and Hitler’s aggressive foreign policy made the outbreak of war unavoidable. However, to form a conclusion about these debates, we must first understand the policy of Appeasement and its…
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