What are some of the causes of World War II?

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mkoren eNotes educator| Certified Educator

There were several causes of World War II. One cause was the German anger with the harsh Versailles Treaty. Germany believed the Versailles Treaty treated them unfairly. This treaty required Germany to pay the Allies $33 billion in reparations. It also required Germany to accept the responsibility for World War I. Germany felt this was unfair because Austria-Hungary started the war by declaring war on Serbia.

Two additional causes of World War II were the Allies ignoring the violations of the Versailles Treaty by Germany and the aggressive actions of the Axis Powers prior to the start of the war. Germany began to violate the Versailles Treaty by building up its military. It also moved its military into the Rhineland. Both actions weren’t allowed in the Versailles Treaty. The Axis Powers became aggressive in the 1930s. Japan invaded Manchuria in 1931 and China in 1937. Italy invaded Ethiopia in 1935. Germany annexed Austria in 1938. Very little was done when these actions occurred. Then, the leaders of Great Britain and France appeased Germany by allowing Germany to take the Sudetenland in 1938 with an agreement called the Munich Pact. When Germany broke their promise to take no more land by taking the rest of Czechoslovakia in 1939, the stage for World War II was set. Italy also invaded Albania in 1939.

Other factors led to the start of World War II. Intense feelings of nationalism emerged in Germany, Japan, and Italy. These countries believed they were superior to other countries and could do almost anything they wanted to do. They also build up their military and had plans to use it. Along with the desire to gain more land, these factors were very significant in leading to the events that were involved in the start of World War II.

There were many factors involved in the start of World War II.

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