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After WWI, the major players tried to make certain that Germany wouldn't be able to attack Europe again. Financial sanctions were implemented to prevent military buildup.

The Great Depression of the 1930's caused quite a bit of financial hardship on German citizens. The people were poor and as such embraced socialism. The NAZI Party of Germany claimed an ability to solve all of the problems of the suffering Germans. NAZI is a German acronym for "National Socialists Workers Party". Germans were anxious to solve their problems and the hardships made it easier for Hitler to get into power and blame everything on the Jews. By taking all financial resources of the Jews, Hitler was able to finance his war and attempted takeover of Europe. In effect, the sanctions following WWI resulted in a motivation for the Socialists of Germany.

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Almost all wars are linked, one to the other. This situation certainly existed in WWI/WWII.

WWI was caused by the growth of nationalism, a long term trend in Europe that had become especially strong in Napoleonic France around 1800. It was manifested in the tremendous growth of colonial empires, mainly those of Russia, England, and France - but also of other nations.

Coming slow to the family of nations, Italy and Germany did not have time to gather up the colonies of the older nation-states. Feeling left out, Germany in particular felt a national desire to grow otherwise.

Ultimately this led to confrontation on the European continent and a World War. Might I add that it was only a 'world' war because the French and English empires were involved as support to what was really just another regional European war. American entry into the war was totally unnecessary as America had no national interest in the slaughter and ultimately failed in every political initiative they put forward after the fight. The Japanese entered on the fringes just as an excuse to gobble up defenseless German colonies in the Pacific. Otherwise almost all the fighting was in Belgium and northeast France with some important side battles fought in small areas of northeast Italy, Serbia, and Poland. Some limited fighting also occurred in various territories occupied by Turkey.

Ultimately, Germany lost that war but did not loose her desire to grow as a nation state. The Nazi/Hitler political movement gave voice to that desire. The already strong military tendencies in the nation were reinforced and Germany again went to war. WWI also ended the major form of government in the world at that time - the monarchy. About half were wiped out, with the other half loosing almost all their political power.

With hindsight, perhaps a more lenient treaty in 1919 would have made Germany less aggressive. Perhaps had Britain not deliberately starved a million German babies after the armistice was signed, there would have been less hard feeling. Perhaps had Russia not become a hate filled Soviet state bent on world domination, the Germans would not have felt such a need to rebuild their military. Perhaps.

Ultimately both wars were fought to sort out the various nationalistic desires of Germany, Britain and France. All three wore themselves out from the two gigantic conflicts. All three ultimately lost the empires they so much desired. Control of world events slipped from the grasp of all three and moved on to the Russians, Americans and others.

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โˆ™ 2009-09-13 13:54:22
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Q: How did World War 1 lead to World War 2 and what are the effects it had on the 20th century?
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