mod notes Essay
WW1 had sign. impact on Germany. Brought about collapse of Hohenzollern monarchy & its replacement by a democratic system, which, after early difficulties, seemed to flourish before becoming a casualty of the Great Depression. War's legacy allowed Adolf Hitler to rise from relative obscurity to overthrow this short-lived democracy, impose a dictatorship, & pursue a foreign policy that, in the name of righting the wrongs of the Versailles settlement, plunged the world into another war.
By the outbreak of war in August 1914, Germany was well established as major world power. Attained in less than 30 years – seen in country's industrial & economic strength, o/seas colonies, extensive trading interests, & its vast army.
Yet, w/in 5 yrs, Germany was on its knees; its armies on Western Front were in full retreat, its citizens were starving & the Hohenzollern monarchy had abdicated in favour of a republic. Nation was about to enter into period of political, social & econ. chaos.
Popular belief held that German ppl & army had been betrayed by socialist politicians who now held reins of govt. Signatories to Armistice of November 1917 & Treaty of Versailles were to blame for country's ills. Against such a background of anger & resentment, the'stab in back legend' was born. As Weimar Republic sought to establish democracy, & rebuild econ. prosperity, extremism & violence on the Right & left of politics flourished.
W/ collapse of world economy in aftermath of Wall Street Crash, mass u/e & popular disenchantment w/ democracy helped to bring Hitler & Nazi movement to power. Domestic policies that offered genuine improvements to living standards were laced w/ coercion & outright terrorism. In foreign affairs, Hitler's adventurist policies & resulting war destroyed the nation of Germany for a 2nd t…