Key Concepts Regarding Post-World War I European History

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Key Concepts Chapter 4 and 5

Chapter 4:
The Dawes Plan:
The terms of the Dawes Plan were: assist the restoration of the German economy by the US loaning an 800 million gold mark loan to Germany. This would allow Germany to rebuild their railways and several key industries, along with that, Germany would repay the Allies through the money they received as they rebuilt their industry. It helped maintain stability in Europe by decreasing the French’s power over Germany. This decrease in tension allowed the countries to work in a more harmonious manner.

The Locarno Agreements:
The terms of the Locarno Agreements were as follow: four arbitration treaties, a Treaty of mutual Guarantee, the treaties were under-written by an Anglo-Italian guarantee, Italy had no direct interest in the Rhineland but was brought into the guarantee because of France, and Belgium, France and Germany pledged themselves not to attack one another unless in self-defense. The French gained true security on their Eastern boarders, Britain was able to decrease French power and better their relationship with Germany, while Germany gained the possibility of revising the German-Polish frontier. They were received with such enthusiasm because European nations believed they had achieved peace.

The ‘Locarno Spirit’ and the Re-emergence of Germany as a Great Power: The Locarno treaties played a large role in the revision of the Treaty of Versailles; however, they were not the sole causes. The Locarno treaties enabled Germany to become a member of the League of Nations. Becoming a member gave Germany the ability to become more prominent in international and foreign policies throughout Europe. This gave the country the opportunity to recommend the Young Plan and the Rhineland Pact. These offered Germany the stepping-stone to revising the Treaty of Versailles.

Russia and Eastern Europe:
During the Locarno Era, Russia was under the control of Stalin. This made the rest of Europe every fearful and they therefore did not include Russia in the Locarno Conference. This created more Russian hostility and tension, and caused the Russians to attempt to create allies amongst other Eastern countries. The tension caused Russian relations to deteriorate, and promote anti-Western Europe policies in the Middle East and Asia. France was able to consolidate their influence in Eastern Europe through Poland and the Balkan region. These two nations allowed France to create necessary allies due to their hatred of Germany and Russia. France’s consolidations influenced them to include Poland and other Eastern states in international policies.

The League of Nations:
The League of Nations was responsible for preventing any types of war and solving all conflicts through peaceful manners. In order to work, the League of Nations was to create a sense of collective security and stabilize Europe so that the countries may interact and live in a calm approach. The League of Nations was unable to assemble a military when necessary, and this severely limited the success of the congregation. The “false” peace created through appeasement led to World War II and proves the League was unsuccessful.

The League, America and Disarmament:
The USA played a role in the disarmament question 1921-33; however, it was not as evident initially. The European nations hoped for American assistance, but did not receive any because the Senate did not ratify President Harding’s proposals. Their primary contribution to the disarmament question fell into the creation of the Kellogg-Briand Peace Pact, which outlawed war. The Peace Pact allowed the United States to further their “associate member” status of the League of Nations. The League was able to achieve so little on this issue because many of the European nations did not feel safe, and therefore, did not feel comfortable disarming their nations.

Assessment:
The Locarno Agreements mark the beginning of a new era of conciliation, along with...
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