How valid is this assessment of the Munich agreement?
The quote ‘Hitler had achieved a major triumph at Munich’ has been an area of controversy for many of years, and there are many differing views on the topic, which brings about fierce debate. Some argue that Hitler had achieved a major triumph, as he had achieved a major milestone through occupying Czechoslovakia without firing a single shot. He played a game of bluff with everyone around him, and eventually got what he wanted. Although on the other hand some may argue that the Agreement was not a success and was a complete failure as Hitler ideal aim was to smash Czechoslovakia and start a war over it. As he did not achieve this and the fact he had it handed to him on a plate shows that he did not get the war he wanted, which indicates that the Munich Agreement was in fact failure and was based upon an opportunity that Hitler managed to manipulate in favour of the state.
It is apparent that there are many contradictory views concerning the Agreement, there are two main different views concerning the argument. One view is from the internationalists this argues that Hitler had underlined a clear plan with coherent ideas which he would follow through to the very end. Hitler knew what his aims were from the start, and had underlined the required steps to undertake. Allan Bullock and Hugh Trevor-Roper are examples of intentionalist historians they regard ‘Mein Kamf’ as a blueprint of Hitler’s proposed achievements. Bullock was born on the 13th December in 1914 he wrote an influential biography of Adolf Hitler underlining his motivations and intention. Bullock was present at the time of Hitler’s actions and would have had a clear first-hand understanding of the topic, when writing his book a few years later. Bullock also worked as an assistant for Winston Churchill and, intentionalist views underlined in his works was a form of inspiration to Bullock. His book ‘Hitler, a study in tyranny’ one of his many publications mainly focus on Hitler and the nazification of Germany. This one imparticular targets Hitler’s participation in the Munich agreement and the events that lead up to it. Bullock’s beliefs stemmed from that of his fathers and grew up in Tow Bridge under the influence of his father. He was also an ardent supporter for the Labour party, these socialist views also contributed to his historical works.
The other view is the structuralist argument which view on this topic is the complete opposite. They argue that Hitler was an opportunist, played a game of bluff with everyone and took his chances when he could. The fact that he had a distinctive lack of organization led to believe that Hitler made him out to be more of an opportunist with his plan regarding czecolvakia. They believe that Hitler had no real plan. One of the most famous opportunitists is AJP Taylor .In 1961; his most controversial piece of work ‘The Origins of the Second World War’ was published. The 1960’s was a time that was open to new ideas and new ways of thinking, and Taylor’s book and views is a clear reflection of this. Taylor also used the benefit of hindsight. The fact that Taylor was born in Birkdale with very wealthy parents is where his controversial nature stemmed from, his parents were classed as pacifists who had extremely left wing views. Whether Hitler achieved a success at Munich is uncertain however it can be considered as an important step in a series of military and political moves. From 1935 and the remilitarisation of the Rhineland Hitler had been testing the allies. In 1937 Hitler ten met with his important military advisors in what later became known as the Hossbach memorandum which became one of the most important documents of the time regarding the German foreign policy. Then in 1938 Hitler again tested the allies and pushed the allies and forced the Anschluss with Austria. This was important because like...