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Appeasement and Public Opinion

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Submitted By baileysmart98
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To what extent was British public opinion the reason that Britain adopted the policy of appeasement?

After a defeat in WW1 Germany was left seriously impacted (want this to be changed?ritain adopted the policy of appeasement? reason thAT torians have argued that milirary am by-election showed the true anti-war). This gave Chancellor Adolf Hitler the perfect opportunity to expand Germany’s territories and get rid of the restrictions placed on Germany after the war. Therefore, Britain’s policy of appeasement aimed to please Germany in order to prevent further conflict, and after the horrific events of WW1 most of the British public supported this. With the horrors still fresh in the public’s mind it can be argued that British public opinion was the main reason as to why Britain adopted the policy of appeasement. However, there are other significant factors that contributed to the adoption of appeasement including economic difficulties, military weaknesses, threat of communism, lack of reliable allies, attitudes towards the Treaty of Versailles and concern for her empire.
One reason for the introduction of appeasement is public opinion. After the Rhineland crisis in a debate in the House of Commons in March 1936, Sir Winston Churchill warned that the atmosphere in Europe had changed recently to the extent that war was being regarded as a serious responsibility. He also described the German occupation of the Rhineland as a menace to Holland, Belgium and France. With the horrors of WW1 still fresh in their minds people were reluctant to enter a second world war and after Guernica in April 1937 support for non-intervention increased as it was feared that “the bomber will always get through”. Of the British public only a minority favoured a stronger line, and then only when British interests were threatened. Gustav Schmidt and Ronald Stromberg agreed that people did...

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