When we talk about the World War II, most would quickly think of the Holocaust, Pearl Harbor, and the atomic bomb on Nagasaki and Hiroshima. What if Hitler had been assassinated or had a heart attack in 1940? This might be a miraculous alternative historical event but it is not the case…
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This might be a miraculous alternative historical event but it is not the case. This paper discusses some of the reasonable and realistic political mistakes that were made and the “What ifs” of these decisions. It also deals with impacts it has on economy and the environment. The outbreak of war was ignited by Germany’s invasion of Poland in September 1939 which could have been avoided if not for poor judgement (Fawcett, 8). The Treaty of Versailles which was imposed on Germany by Orlando of Italy, Georges Clemenceau of France, Lloyd George of England and Woodrow Wilson of the US discussed the punishment they had to give Germany for starting World War I. Woodrow Wilson formulated a 14-point-plan which he believed would bring peace to Europe but Clemenceaue wanted revenge on Germany. Georges agreed with Wilson but the public sided with France. The Germans were expecting a treaty based on Wilson’s 14 points but ended being disappointed. Instead, they had no choice but to take the very harsh agreement. They had to accept the blame for starting World War I, were forced to pay ?6.6 billion for war damages and were only allowed to have a small army. Moreover, Rhineland would be de-militarized. Some of Germany’s territories were given to other countries and union with Austria was also forbidden. Imposing a cold-hearted punishment like this to a poor and starving war struck country made many very unhappy. Germany looked for a saviour and found one, Adolf Hitler. He promised to tear down the treaty. As soon as he was elected Chancellor in January 1933, he wasted no time in building his army in secret. This was no secret for the French and Britain. They did not pay much attention thinking that the actions of Hitler would prevent the expansion of Communism to the West. They were wrong. By 1936, Germany had an army but it was not that strong. In the dawn of March 7, 1936, Hitler ordered his troops to enter Rhineland. At this point, thousands of France soldiers were also at the Franco-German border, yet they did not do anything, a great mistake. One of Hitler’s general, Heinz Guderian, stated that if the French had intervened in Rhineland in 1936, they could have defeated Hitler there and then. Later, it was also revealed that Hitler privately admitted: “The forty-eight hours after the march into the Rhineland were the most nerve-racking in my life. If the French had then marched into the Rhineland we would have had to withdraw with our tails between our legs, for the military resources at our disposal would have been wholly inadequate for even a moderate resistance” (Bullock, 135). If only the French or Britain made an action and put aside their fear, World War II could have been avoided at that point. In 1936, Italy and Japan allied with Germany. After these alliances Hitler started taking back German lands. They started with Austria in 1938, which was a direct violation of the Treaty of Versailles. Hitler promised that Anschluss, union with Germany, would be the end of his expansion and he did not want to risk war. Six months later, Hitler invaded Sudetenland and eventually the whole of Czechoslovakia and yet again no one dared to stop Germany. The British Prime Minister, Neville Chamberlain, thought that pressing military pressure from France and Britain would scare Germany from invading Poland. Chamberlain was wrong. In September 1, 1939, Germany attacked and occupied Poland, World War II officially started. Hitler also made one crucial mistake in 1941 when he declared war on Russia while he was still fighting Britain. It was in December 7, 1941 that Japan unsparingly and deliberately attacked Pearl Harbour despite of Hitler’s advice not to bother the US and concentrate on conquering the British colonies. Japan
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(World War II: Political Mistakes, Economic and Environmental Impacts Essay)
“World War II: Political Mistakes, Economic and Environmental Impacts Essay”, n.d. https://studentshare.org/english/1448496-world-war-ii-s-mistakes.
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