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Lecture 4

HISB94H3 Lecture Notes - Lecture 4: Nuclear Weapon, Firebombing, Group Of Soviet Forces In Germany

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Nicole Nelson

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The formation of the Axis
(Germany, Italy, and Japan)
German–Japanese “Anti-Comintern [“friendship”] Pact” 1936
German-Japanese pact – brought the war to the pacific
German-Italian “Pact of Steel” (May 1939)
Spielraum (room to maneuver) – Germany needed extra space to expand their empire. They
wanted natural borders to make sure the Reich survived for a 1000 years
Wanted natural resources
Wanted to bring in people
Invade other countries to bring in German communities in those countries
oThis was their justification
The Anschluss  The annexation of Austria, presented asthe “unification” of Germany and
Austria (March 1938)
Annexed Austria  Germans were welcomed into Austria, not really contested by the people
Caused alarm throughout Europe
But there was no military force or battles so they accepted it
The rest of the world thought that this would be enough for Germany
Annexation of Czech Sudetenland
Had a large German population
oGermany said that these people were being abused and needed to be protected
by the German state
Was one of most industrialized areas of Europe
oAlso had lots of natural resources – coal
Munich Pact of 1938  Germany promised England (Neville Chamberlain) and rest of Europe
that they’d stop now. No more invading other countries.
Molotov-Ribbentrop Non-Aggression Pact (1939) – said that Germany wouldn’t attack the Soviet
Union and vice versa
March 1939, Germany marched to Prague and took more of Czechoslovakia
Already braking the Munich Pact of Sept 1938
Broke any delusions about the German’s intentions that the rest of Europe held
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German Invasion of Poland (1 Sept. 1939) led to start of Blitzkrieg  ‘lightning war’, vastly
improved technology on Germany’s side allowed them to attack faster and be more mobilized
Chamberlain – delusional hope that Britain wouldn’t have to enter into another war
Had belief that Hitler would be an agreeable person that they could discuss problems
The Appeasement was useless – they thought that they’d be able to negotiate, believed
Hitler when he said that all he wanted was to take back the German motherland
Britain and France Declare War  September 3 1939
French mistakes
France took wrong approach to German aggression
Built very large wall on Eastern side of country to protect the country from German
oDidn’t stand up too well to new technologies and warfare
oDid nothing to defend against planes
The wall ended in Belgium and Denmark. Once Belgium/Denmark said they wouldn’t
fight Germany, the Germans could just go around the end of the wall
France did not have enough equipment – Germany had been preparing for years
The Role of Japan
Japan also wanted to expand their territory. However, Britain had territory in Asia that they
wanted to hold on to.
This stretched Britain – they had to defend their colonies in Asia and be involved in
Same went for the US – after Pearl Harbour, the US had to be divided between Asia and
Lend-Lease Policy
Passed in 1941
They wouldn’t participate in the war physically but they would give materials to Britain
Part II
Allied Campaigns
Continuous Air Campaign by Britain and US
North African campaign – come up from Africa and come up into South of Europe. Led to a
double pronged attack
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