What Were the Main Causes of World War II?

There were various variables that led to World War II Causes, which may be divided into long-term and short-term causes.s…..
World War II ran from September 1939 to September 1945 and was a catastrophic conflict. The war was fought between the Allies and their allies (led by the United Kingdom, France, and Russia) and the Axis Powers and their allies (led by Germany, Italy, and Japan).
Although it is often assumed that the war began when France and Britain declared war on Germany in reaction to her invasion of Poland, the truth is more complicated. There were a number of reasons that contributed to the Second World War, which may be split into short-term and long-term causes.

Causes of World War II
Causes of World War II

Main Causes of World War II

Long Term Causes

Reparations on Germany from the Treaty of Versailles

After World War I ended in 1918, there was widespread agreement that Germany should be held accountable for their role in the war and that restrictions should be put on them so that they do not pursue conflict again. Major international leaders assembled, including Woodrow Wilson of the United States, Vittorio Emanuele Orlando of Italy, Georges Clemenceau of France, and Lloyd George of England, to decide how Germany could be punished. Because France desired vengeance on Germany, the Treaty of Versailles was drafted in favor of Georges Clemenceau and was not based on Woodrow Wilson’s 14-point plan, which was intended to restore peace to the European continent.

The Treaty of Versailles required Germany to return French lands it had seized during the Franco-Prussian War. Germany was also requested to pay an exorbitant sum of money. Some scholars, notably John Maynard Keynes, expressed concern that the Treaty of Versailles was excessively punitive. They warned that such tolls would destroy Germany’s economy since the country would be unable to pay for World War I reparations, posing a concern for the rest of Europe. It wouldn’t be long before these forecasts became a reality.

Hitler and the Rise of Other Dictators (Fascism)

Germany got enraged upon learning of the Treaty of Versailles. It was rage fueled by frustration over losing the war, as well as resentment about increasing unemployment rates that were only going to become worse. During this period, Adolf Hitler saw an opportunity to seduce the German people with promises of simple answers to the difficulties confronting the Weimer Republic (as Germany was known at the time).

The political milieu at the time was conducive to radical associations and parties. The Nazi Party was one such active party during this time period. Hitler seized leadership of the party between 1933 and 1934. However, it didn’t take long for him to convert his reign into a dictatorship. After a failed coup attempt to overthrow the Weimer administration, Hitler tried to ascend by legal methods, and he was eventually successful.

Hitler’s diplomatic strategy included making allegedly outrageous demands and then threatening war if they were not satisfied. When compromises were made, he accepted them while making additional demands. Hitler believed in the proper extension of the Germanic people’s homeland and controlled Nazi Germany through an anti-semitic perspective. Hitler disregarded the Treaty of Versailles and significantly increased the number of German forces.

By signing the Munich Agreement with Nazi Germany, France, Italy, and Britain attempted to persuade Hitler not to deploy his forces. British Prime Minister Neville Chamberlain famously sought to avert another World War with appeasement tactics that included talking with Hitler for the right to land in Czechoslovakia. However, all dispersion attempts were in vain.

It didn’t help that Hitler wasn’t the only Fascist leader in Europe at the time. Benito Mussolini had been the ruler of Italy since the 1920s. Mussolini was credited with inventing fascist politics. Though fascism varied from Nazism in that it was perceived as less brutal, the two philosophies had many similarities, including the fact that they were both primarily motivated by nationalism. Mussolini demonstrated his devotion to Hitler by forming a pact with him in 1936.

The Great Depression of the 1930s

The globe was facing a terrible economic crisis known as the Great Depression from 1929 to 1939. There is little question that the Great Depression contributed significantly to the outbreak of World War II. Factors such as widespread unemployment in Germany and poverty in Japan infuriated populations, leading them to be misled by totalitarian administrations that declared it legitimate to violently pillage from other nations anytime they wished. As previously said, most leaders, like Hitler, grabbed power by channeling their citizens’ rage and hate onto other countries. Governments utilized anger to control the people, who were readily influenced by promises of jobs and a higher quality of life.

READ MORE: Top 10 Smallest Countries in Europe

Short Term Causes

The Japanese invasion of Manchuria (China)

Japan attacked Manchuria in northeast China in 1931. Fearing international repercussions, the Japanese authorities used the Mukden Incident to justify their invasion. However, their true motivation was a desire to seize Chinese land, a scheme that began in the late 1800s during the First Sino-Japanese War. The invasion began with bombings of various towns, including Guangzhou, Nanjing, and Shanghai, where the Imperial Japanese Army committed atrocities.

The Italian Invasion of Ethiopia

Ethiopia and Italy were at war from 1935 and 1939 as a result of the Italian invasion of Ethiopia (also known as Abyssinia). The aim to offer more land and resources to hungry and underprivileged Italians was one of Italy’s motivations for the invasion.

The German Invasion of Poland

In September 1939, German armies invade Poland. This is frequently seen as the start of the conflict.

On September 1, 1939, Germany launched an invasion of Poland. The Soviet Union followed suit two weeks later. This is widely regarded as the pivotal event at which World War II began. Following the German onslaught, both France and the United Kingdom declared war on Germany.

Pearl Harbor Attack

Although not a pre-war event, the assault on Pearl Harbor is important for drawing the United States into the war. Japan startled the United States on December 7, 1941, by attacking a group of battleships in Pearl Harbor, Hawaii, as a declaration of war. In reaction for the attacks, the United States declared war on Japan. Following that, Italy and Germany declared war on the United States.

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