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Important Points on Internationalism on the Eve of World War II

By thenewjakee Apr 21, 2014 3165 Words
Chapter 28 Outline: International Conflicts, 1914-1999
Confidence and Internationalism on the Eve of WWI:
Imperialists believed that western leadership was bringing new enlightenment to the inferior peoples of the rest of the world 1864: German convention; established the Red Cross, an international agency for humanitarian service in wartime Western socialists formed an international movement, based on the idea that working peoples should unite across national boundaries International movement had two weaknesses

Based heavily on western dominance; arose at same time as nationalism; Olympics became international forum for fierce athletic competition between rival nations World Court established at the Hague in 1899; most set rules were ignored in the great world war 15 years later (no use of gas, no use of weapons from balloons) The Onset of WWI:

Two rival alliances had formed in Europe (Germany, Italy, and Austria-Hungary vs. Britain, France, Russia) By 1900, most of the world had been carved up
The two alliance systems focused on the leading European trouble spot, the Balkans Nations tended to use military growth as a distraction from social tensions Small nations in Balkans fought two wars in 1912-1913

July 1914: Archduke Franz Ferdinand was assassinated by a Serbian nationalist; Last straw for Austria-Hungary Russia refused Austria bully Serbia; France vowed to support Russia; Germany declares war on both Russia and France on August 1; Britain joins on the 4th Patterns of War in Europe:

Two major fronts were established in Europe
Western front: German vs. French and British defenders
Eastern front: German and weak Austrians vs. Russia
Italy joins war wooed by promises of land gains after war in 1915 Italian front develops: Italians vs. Austrians
German submarines wrecked havoc; the single most important cause of America’s entry to WWI 1916: stagnation on the Western front turns to a nightmare: Germans lose 850000, French 700000, British 410000 Fighting spread to Balkans; Austria crushed Serbia and other small states in line that hoped for independence War led to unprecedented growth of government

Governments leaned heavily on public opinion; newspapers and media provided propaganda Mata Hari (1876-1917) was accused of spying and executed by the French in WWI; claimed she spied for the French in German occupied Belgium The War Outside Europe:

Inevitable that the war would spill over into other areas and that some of its most important effects were felt outside Europe British dominions were drawn into the war early on as loyal members of the empire; soldiers brought in from dominions to the fronts WWI brought US into world power politics and made it a major player American businesspeople profited from the war by selling goods to the various combatants and taking advantage of Europeans’ distraction to gain new ground in other world markets US was converted from debtor to creditor nation for first time in history 1917: US joins war, brought new wave of idealism, choosing to see its unaccustomed role as fighting for international al justice and democracy Combatants in Africa, Asia, and the Middle East:

Minor skirmishes of war fought around German colonies in Africa; involved Africans as colonial troops Experience in European warfare made Africans increasingly aware of European standards and the contradiction between fierce nationalist pride in Europe and the subjection of their own peoples Japan entered war on side of Britain, honoring its alliance with them China declared war on Germany in 1917; hoping not to be ignored by the Europeans WWI advanced an already aggressive Japanese policy

Large numbers of Indian troops fought for Britain; nationalists supported the movement, hoping to gain independence after war; promised little self government after war Ottoman Empire joined war on Germany’s side; weakened the already feeble empire British promised support for Jewish settlers in Israel in the Balfour Declaration of 1917 Ottoman empire split apart with Germany’s defeat

War brought substantial decrease in Europe’s world power
US and Japan won new prestige
The War’s end:
March 1917; Russia suffers a major revolution, topples tsarist government October 1917: Lenin and the communists came to power in Russia New leadership signed the Brest-Litvosk Treaty with Germans, giving the Germans substantial territories in western Russia in turn for peace Germans had to commit more troops to the newly gained ground; reduced the abilities of a thoroughly war torn nation to keep pushing to the west Series of last ditch German offensives in 1918 failed, leaving Germany with no reserves Counteroffensive and collapse of Habsburgs in Italy and Balkans weakened the German efforts even more Military generals put a new civilian government in place to avoid direct blame of their forces New government led by socialists had no choice but to sue for peace in November 1918 New Section FIX THIS BEFORE PRINT:

Diplomats met in Versailles to debate the fate of much of the world Most of the world (Russia, Japan, Germany) were not represented Japan’s demands were highly ignored; Italy was unhappy with the received land US president Woodrow Wilson proposed the League of Nations; meant to deal with future disputes and to make war unnecessary Domestic public opinion prevented the US from taking a consistently active role America did not join the League; political isolationism contributed to French and British fears for the future Austro-Hungarian empire completely collapsed: new nations were created: Czechoslovakia, Hungary, and Yugoslavia Poland revived as Germany lost land

Impositions to Germany created huge discontent in Germany; vowed to avenge France Russia was also reduced due to the creation of small states in E. Europe The War’s Devastations and Dislocations:

France and Serbia lost more than 1/10 of their total populations Loss of men decreased birth rates
Inflation soared in many countries after the war; people with fixed savings were nearly wiped out Little outright loss of colonies
1920s were peak of Western imperialism
Germany’s African colonies were taken over by Britain and France; held as mandates 1923: new Turkish nation was created under the lead of Mustafa Kemal (Ataturk) Rest of ottoman empire held as mandates of the League of Nations Britain took Iraq and Palestine; France took Lebanon and Syria Middle East became politically fragmented

American and Japanese business peoples captured many European markets; complicated Europe’s immediate postwar recovery War gave birth to new international organization
League of Nations proved to be little more than a discussion group as really diplomacy continued on the nation to nation basis The Great Depression: Causes of Economic Instability:
Impact of WWI on European economy led to rocky years into the early 1920s War induced inflation caused major problems: prices soared daily Forceful government action finally resolved the crisis in 1923, but only by a massive devaluation of the mark in Germany Britain recouperated slowly due to dependence on an export market that was now open to wider competition Farmers experienced chronic overproduction of food and resulted in low prices Most of the dependent areas in the world economy were suffering badly Production often exceeded demand, which drove prices and earning s down not only in Africa but also in Latin America Colonies and dependent areas were unable to buy many industrial exports which weakened the demand for western products Nationalistic selfishness predominated

Protectionism simply reduced market opportunities and made a bad situation worse; Italy turned to fascism Collapse and Crisis:
New York stock market crashes in 1929
Stock values tumbled as investors quickly lost confidence in issues that had been pushed ridiculously high Many US banks failed, dragging their depositors along with them Throughout the industrial West; investment funds dried up as creditors went bankrupt or tried to call in their loans Industrial production began to fall, beginning in industries that produced capital goods and later consumer goods Falling production lead to falling employment and lower wages Up to one third of all blue collar workers in the West lost their jobs Depression fed itself, growing steadily worse from 1929-1933 Worldwide Impact:

Soviet Union was busy building an industrial society under communist control; promoted socialism in one country Depression was prevented in the 1930s
For most of the rest of the world, the depression worsened an already bleak economic picture Nations that produced foods and raw material s saw their prices and earnings drop even more than before Japan as a new industrial country on the rise was hit hard

Japan’s purchases of silk exports collapsed, leading to severe unemployment Value of Japanese exports plummeted by 50 percent in 1929-1931 Depression was accompanied by several agricultural failures and bad harvests in many region s For Japan, depression increased suspicion of the West and helped promote new expansionism In West, depression lead to new welfare programs

World War II:
War broke out formally in 1939 but was lead onto by series of events prior in the 1930s Deliberate strides towards military expansion by Japan and Germany brought the clouds of War to Asia, the Pacific, Europe, and the Mediterranean Feeble responses from the other powerful states in Europe and North America resulted in nationalistic and idealogical divisions, including western suspicion of the communist regime in the soviet Union New Authoritarian Regimes:

Japanese voters continued to prefer more moderate parties, but leadership fell increasingly into militaristic hands Chinese nationalist forces seemed to be gaining ground in their effort to unify their chaotic nation after the 1911 revolution Japan marched into Manchuria in 1931; condemned by the League of Nations; Japan simply withdrew from the League The National Socialist Party (Nazi) led by Adolf Hitler began to pick up strength after nearly fading away in the mid 1920s Nazis promised to reverse the humiliation of the Versailles treaty and gain military glory and new territory for Germany Hitler took power legally in 1933; abolished the parliamentary regime and built a totalitarian state Hitler expanded armament production, creating new jobs, and built up the army and separate Nazi forces Essence of the state was authority, and the function of the state was war Hitler galvanized the authoritarian fascist state in Italy led by Benito Mussolini The Steps Toward War:

Hitler suspended reparation payments, renouncing this part of the Versailles settlement Withdrew from the League of Nations
Announced German rearmament in 1935 and brought military forces into the Rhineland in 1936 1935: Mussolini attacked Ethiopia; League of Nations condemned his action, but no one took action Italy won a new colony in Africa

1936: Civil War in Spain; authoritarians (nationalists) vs. republicans (leftists) By 1939, the republican forces had been defeated in Spain
1938; Hitler declared a long sought union (Anschluss) with Austria Munich Conference convinced French and British leaders that Hitler might be satisfied with acquiescence British prime minister Neville Chamberlain proclaimed that his “appeasement” had won peace Hitler took all of Czech. By March 1939

Hitler attacked Poland on September 1, 1939 not necessarily expecting war, but clearly prepared to risk it War had already broken out in China
Japanese leaders wanted to defeat the Chinese to prevent future trouble; stalemate resulted until 1945 A Tripartite Pact was signed by Germany, Japan, and Italy in September 1940; Japan and Germany never collaborated closely, due to japans refusal to participate in Germany’s ultimate war with the Soviet Union France and Britain continued to feel the deliberating effects of WWI and were not eager for another conflict US was eager to maintain its policy of isolationism in order to not complicate the delicate process of building a new set of government programs to fight the depression Western effort was too little and too late to prevent war

The Course of the War: Japan’s Advance and Retreat:
Only in 1942 and 1943 did the tide begin to change
Japan used the outbreak of war in Europe as an occasion to turn its attention to other parts of Asia; seized Indochina from the French Their desire for an Asian empire put them on a collision course with the US who were unwilling to allow Japan to became a major force in the Far East Negotiations with the US broke down

The Japanese attacked Pearl Harbor on December 7, 1941 and seized American possessions in the eastern Pacific, including the Philippines Only toward the middle of 1942 did the US begin to gain ground Philippines regained in 1944

Massive air raids began an onslaught on Japan itself
Germany Overreaches:
Germany at first seemed unstoppable
Blitzkrieg: “lightning war”: rapid movement of troops, tanks, and mechanized carriers Using Blitzkrieg, Germany crushed Poland; pushed into Denmark and Norway France fell surprisingly quickly; unprepared for war and reliant on an outdated defensive strategy Only Britain stood apart; able to withstand Hitler’s air offensive and win the contest for its skies known as the Battle of Britain Solid new leadership under Winston Churchill

1940; Germany controlled the bulk of the European continent Conquered territories in North Africa were forced to supply materials, troops, and slave labor to the German war machine Balance of war began to shift in 1941; Hitler turned toward Russia after being blockaded from invading Britain Weather came in the aid of the Russians

Germans were caught off guard by a harsh winter
American involvement began to make itself felt in 1942 when American and British forces challenged the Germans in north Africa Same year, the Russians pushed back an intensive German siege of Stalingrad; Red armies began a gradual push westward that would take them past their own borders and by 1945 deep into Germany British and American forces moved into the Italian peninsula; ousted Mussolini Allies invaded France in 1944; pushed the Germans back with the aid of French forces April 30, Hitler committed suicide in his Berlin bunker; German military commanders surrendered the next month War in pacific ended a few months later

Japan’s collapse was precipitated by American use of atomic bombs on Hiroshima and Nagasaki; helped secure the second unconditional surrender of an Axis power Ushered in a period of US occupation

Human Costs:
In Nanking, as many as 300000 were killed after the city had fallen to the Japanese Holocaust: Hitler’s decision to eliminate Jews throughout Europe resulted in 6 million deaths in the gas chambers; other groups like gypsies and various political dissidents were also brutalized American officials wanted to force Japan to surrender without costly invasion and they also hurried to prevent soviet advance in Asia Bombings of Hiroshima killed more than 78000 and Nagasaki killed tens of thousands Harry Truman: “the greatest thing in history”

At least 35 million people were killed in the war, 20 million in the Soviet Union alone The Settlements of WWII:
Key result of allied discussions was agreement on the United Nations; featured better representation than did the League of Nations Permanent seats on the Security Council: US, Britain, France, China, Russia Primary mission providing a forum for negotiating disputes

Organization played a vital role in various international police and relief operations Role accelerated as cold war ended in the 1980s
All agreed Hitler’s regime must go and that Germany must surrender unconditionally Growing tension between the Soviet Union and the US
Meeting at Teheran in 1943: Russians pressed western powers to open a new front in France; led to Normandy 1944 Yalta Conference, 1945; FDR pushed for help from Soviets in Japan in exchange for Manchuria; arranged to divide Germany into four occupation zones Postdam Conference divided Germany pending a final peace treaty; Austria gained independence in 1956 Japan occupied by US; stripped from Korea; China regained most of its former territory Indian and African troops had fought for Britain during the war Nations newly created in the Balkans quickly fell under soviet domination with communist governments forced upon them Two great movements were ushered in: decolonization (created new nations in Asia, Africa, and West Indies from 1946-1970) and confrontation between the two great powers that emerged from the war, US and Soviet Union (cold war) The Cold War and Decolonization, 1945-1989:

Winston Churchill coined the phrase iron curtain to describe the division between free and repressed societies in Europe 1947; US proclaims Marshall Plan: program of substantial loans that was designed to aid Western nations in rebuilding from the war’s devastation In soviet eyes, plan was vehicle for US economic dominance

Germany was focal point of cold war for the early years
1947; West moved to promote German economic growth by creating a stable currency, soviets responded by blockading the city of Berlin US responded with a massive airlift to keep the city supplied; crisis ended in 1948, when East and West Germany began to take shape North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) formed in 1949 in a defensive alliance against possible Soviet aggression In response, soviet Russia organized the Warsaw Pact among its eastern European satellites 1949; soviets developed their own atomic bomb; from this point on, US and Soviet Russia built even more fearsome nuclear arsenals North Korea’s invasion of South was ultimately backed by Soviet aid; US opposition was billed as a battle against international communism Tensions between the tow superpowers seemed to threaten nuclear confrontation; soviets began to install missiles on Western hemisphere soil in Cuba US military response brought regional war in Vietnam; US forced to retreat Cold war was also a battle of ideas

Battle of ideas affected the societies involved
Peak of intensity passed after the 1950s
From 1946-1970s, almost all former western colonies won independence China and Vietnam also experienced sweeping revolutions
Many new nations proclaimed nonalignment in the cold war; seeked and gained workable diplomatic relations with both the US and Russia Economic interactions increased between most nations
Multinational companies began production operations in various parts of the world often influencing individual governments in unprecedented ways International pollution problems were a final fruit of the increasingly global character of the world economy Ronald Reagan increased military spending; Soviets were hard pressed to respond Mikhail Gorbachev openly acknowledged soviet economic crisis in 1985 Gorbachev was obliged to recognize full independence of satellite states in eastern Europe by 1989 Soviet Union collapsed in 1991, signaling the end of the cold war Period III: The 1990s and Beyond:

US had no full rival as military superpower
Alliance systems that had marked western and world history began to close down Regional conflicts demanded new attention in the aftermath of changes in eastern Europe Tensions involving Iraq; conflict between India and Pakistan; fighting in former Yugoslavia; massive killings in central Africa US and often United Nations played roles in forming alliances that tried to reduce hostilities Reassertions of regional identities also accompanied the end of the cold war Revival of Islam continued to generate tensions within the middle east, affecting even well established secular states like Turkey New emphasis was placed on regional but supranational trade blocs, designed to support economic growth by generating wider markets and labor supplies EU expanded its membership and proposed further growth

North American free trade agreement joined the US, Mexico, and Canada Most major societies in all regions moved toward more common commercial policies Countries reduced state run enterprises in favor of greater competition and freer market forces Fewer policy disparities than at any previous point in the 20th century Interest in democratic political processes spread to many different societies Developments reflected the steady growth in the importance of international economic contacts in the post cold war era No single framework had emerged in the international arena, with superpower rivalry a thing of the past

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