24 October 2018
The Major Cause of the Second World War and the Rise of Nazism
There is no doubt World War One drastically changed the world. This catastrophic event
punctured Europe, leaving it devastated like never seen before. After indescribable suffering and
millions dead, the world would never wish to have such a horrendous incident again, creating a
peace treaty with reparations against Germany. The Versailles Treaty had saddled Germany with
tremendous payments of war restitution, leaving her strung in economic chaos, stripped of its
territory, caused widespread humiliation, and drove the then ineffective Weimar Republic out of
power weakening the government, forward halting future tyrants to consolidate power. Amidst 1
this uproar, the sanctions placed on Germany annihilated its society, economy, and government.
This lead to an Adolf Hitler to use German nationalism and appoint himself ruler of Nazi
Germany, reverse the Treaty, and begin World War Two. The relentless Versailles Treaty, meant
to bring peace, in fact, brought the worst of all worlds: devastation to all sides of the globe, and a
bittered Germany yearning to take revenge, in the most destructive world war in history. 2
Without it, the Nazi party would not have risen to power in Germany, Germany would not
have rearmed and sought revenge by attacking other countries, making the Treaty of
Versailles a primary cause for the rise of Nazism that resulted in the second world war.
1 Keith D. Dickson, World War II for Dummies (New York, NY: Hungry Minds, 2001), 52.
2 G.D.Sheffield, A Short History of the First World War (London: Oneworld Publications, 2014), 173.
Paragraph 1: Impounded income.
Topic Sentence: The Treaty was brutal on Germany’s economy as it took away its major source
of economic income. 3
- Much of Germany’s economy was dependent on its overseas colonies, and their
productions of coal and iron. 4
- This constrained Germany in financial ruin as these colonies were stripped from
them following the 1919 peace treaty.
- The production of iron and coal was a core dependent on Germany’s financial income
and terminating it, undoubtedly strained her economy. 5
- Michael Howard the author of, The First World War, argues that “the Saar Basin
and Upper Silesia, which were surrendered to France and Poland in the Treaty of
Versailles contained the dominance of German coal fields.” 6
- “The loss of Alsace-Lorraine meant the loss of iron ore fields as it owned the
production of seventy-five percent of Germany's production of iron.” 7
- Furthermore, The Treaty called for Germany to deliver millions of tons of coal to the
victorious allies as a part of their reparation payments. 8
- “Additional, important clauses cause for the obligation to deliver 20 million tons
of coal per year to France and Belgium and them to allow the production of
Alsace-Lorraine into Germany duty-free for 5 years.” 9
3 Michael Howard, The First Wo...