World War II
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Background: The Treaty of Versailles itself sowed the seeds of another world conflagration. It was such an unjust Treaty that the Allied Powers sought territorial and economic benefits brushing aside the idealistic war axims. The discontented Germany during the great slump period of the world economy, when she had been suffering from a terrible economic crisis, bought onto its political stage a person who promised to build a new Germany and free the country of the shackles of the Versalles Treaty.
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In 1933, Adolf Hitler became the Chancellor of Germany and in the following year he became the President of the German Republic after the death of Von Hindenburg. To tear away the Treaty of Versailles, he joined hands with Mussolini, the Fascist leader of Italy, and both began their verbal crusade against Big Powers who had mono-polished whole colonies of the world.
One by one, Hitler broke the terms of the Versailles Treaty by occupying Sarr, Alsace-Loraine, Sudetenland and Czechoslovakia. This onward march of Hitler also alarmed Britain and France. Muussolini attacked Abyssinia and Japan attacked China. This aggressive mood of the Fascist Powers got its fullest expression when they formed an Axis providing for mutual aid in the international sphere.
Immediate Causes of the World War II: Encouraged by his threats and blistering, which had brought success in the past, Hitler, demanded from Poland a corridor to establish a direct link with east Prussia. Britain and France guaranteed aid to Poland in the event of any aggression against her and started friendly negotiations with Russia.
Britain's negotiations with Russia, however, failed and Hitler, taking advantage of this failure, succeeded in signing a Nonaggression Pact with Russia. Being convinced that Britain would now fight for Poland, he attacked Poland on Sept 1, 1939, to side with Poland in case of aggression against her, declared war against Germany on Sept 3, 1939.
Main Contestants of World War II : Germany, Italy and Japan, called the Axis Powers, were on one side and Britain, France, Russia, USA, Poland and others, called Allies, were on the other side. The war ended on August 14, 1945.
Result of World War II: The ravages of the war were so complex and widespread that no formal Peace Conference could be held immediately after the surrender of Germany and Japan. The meetings of he Big Three (Russia, UK and USA) at Cairo, Teheran, Yalta and Potsdam formulated general principles, which ultimately led to disagreements between the victorious Powers. Germany was divided into four zones, two States - East Germany under the Soviet Union and West Germany under the Allies. Another noteworthy sequel to this war was emergence of USSR as one of the biggest powers of the world, while the United Kingdom and France lost much of their past glory.
Nearly all the East European countries embraced Communism and communist rule was established in the Chinese mainland also.