Could WWII have been Prevented?
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During the early 1940’s many European, countries and the United States, were recovering from World War I and the depression. Due to the fact that no one initially could or wanted to control Hitler’s dictatorial power his extreme racism got out of control and he was able to slaughter millions of Jews. Though eventually Hitler brought destruction upon himself, if other countries would have stopped him in the early stages, World War II may have never happened. Though countries might have wanted to stop Hitler in Germany; they had their own county and people to worry about. The economic troubles prevented England and other European nations from taking part in international issues, and Hitler took full advantage of their weak conditions.
This lack of interest form European powers proved deadly in the long term. Hitler got stronger as time went on and his racism against Jews was pushed further with the start of Concentration Camps. Some might claim that even if the major European Powers did interfere Hitler could not have been stopped, this was because of the strong support he had of his people. All the countries in Europe were stronger than Germany as a whole so they could have stopped Hitler and his racist approach.
Because of WWI other countries in Europe were mainly focused on the recovery of their own countries, and therefore; paid little attention to Hitler’s rise in power.
Hitler went straight to the big powers of Europe to get the go-ahead to take over different parts of neighboring countries which had contained large native German populations. On September 15th, 1938, Hitler demanded the cession to Germany of the Sudetenland, the mountainous northwestern border area for Czechoslovakia that was home to 3.5 million ethnic Germans, He expressed his strong willingness to risk “world war” to achieve his objective, the British, French, Germans, and Italians- hastily arranged conference at Munich, and they reached an agreement that essentially met most if not all of Hitler’s demands. Rather than recognizing or examining why Hitler wanted these lands they actually went along with Hitler. Therefore, they contributed to the escalation of a World War and the eventual mass genocide of the Jewish race. Hitler had all his war plans “And so we National Socialists … take up where we broke off six hundred years ago.
We stop the endless German movement to the south and west, and turn our gaze toward the land in the east… If we speak of soil in Europe today, we can primarily have in mind only Russia and her vassal border states” Hitler’s conclusion was apparent: Germany must prepare for its inevitable war with the Soviet Union. During this time a big problem was the ignorance of Hitler. Hitler’s ideas were by no means secret. He had spelled them out in the Mein Kampf, a book readily available to anyone who wished to read it. The ignorance was very costly because it led to World War II. Once the war had started many countries were still reluctant to allow Jews in their county, “American visas were not easy to arrange. The United States had a quota system- it would admit only a certain number of immigrants from each country. In 1941, the U.S. government tightened up even further.
It said “no” to a program that would have admitted 20,000 Germany-Jewish children.” Because of the effects of the great depression the United States did not want large amounts of immigrants to enter the country. The jobs were still limited and the U.S. wanted theses minimal jobs for the citizens. Since the United States rejected the program that would have allowed thousands of more Jews in the U.S. there were many Jews that were forced to remain in Europe awaiting their deaths. The economic depression of other countries aided Hitler’s cause. It made it easier for him to collect all the Jews. Even the United States in the early stages did not take Hitler seriously. They did not let the Jews enter the United States in large amounts, which made it easier for Hitler to kill Jews in Europe. All major European powers and the United States did not recognize the true threat that was posed by Hitler, which ultimately hurt the Jewish race the most.
Since Hitler was permitted to aggressively continue his fascist tendencies, in effect the other countries aided him in installing his racist program of genocide. As the war progressed, Hitler was able to start up concentration camps, and later death camps to eliminate Jews, and increase land for his Aryan Race. He was able to make the concentration camps because of the many easy victories earlier in the war. With the concentration camps in place Hitler’s first step to his Final Solution was completed. Many Jews were killed on their way to concentration camps, “I cannot say how many people in our car alone died on this trip. Everything was so confusing, and always there was screaming. The chaos was unbelievable. Her Germans created it on purpose to upset us, and then used our behavior as an excuse for beating or shooting us. It didn’t take long for us to see the full truth of our situation. No on pretended any more.
We had been brought here to die.” Hitler’s racism was out of control. The fact that he exterminated Jews was atrocious, but the way he had it done was even worse, “Close to it, a huge chimney smoked constantly. That building was the gas chamber where many people, mostly Jews, were killed with poisonous gas, 24 hours a day. When I asked him the rather stupid question, “How do we get away from here?” he told me bluntly. “There is NO way out for any of us but through the chimney. We call this our journey to heaven.” Jews were killed with no mercy. They were gassed all day every day at record rates. Hitler’s racism was a result of his cockiness, which came to him because he was able to take over countries with little trouble. The Jews had lost all hope and the best they could wish for was their quick death.
The worst was the humiliation that the women had to live through, “Females were told to strip naked and parade in front of him, arms outstretched, dresses held over their right arms. While he hummed classical music, he would point to the right or to the left with his thumb, deciding whether each one was to live or die.” Temperatures were below freezing many times. Women were treated just as harsh as the men at the concentration camps. All this was caused by the mere ignorance of Hitler’s ideas earlier by other European countries.
Though some might say that Hitler was too strong to be stopped even in the early stages of war, they do not recognize the fact that the World War could have been prevented by removing Hitler from power. They would say that World War was inevitable because of the amount of support Hitler had gained in such a short period of time. He was able to convince the people that he was the right person to make them a stronger country as a whole. Hitler also brainwashed the people into thinking that Jews were to blame for everything. Therefore his people supported his cruel behavior towards the Jews, “All across Germany, the fate of the Jews was beginning to look more and more bleak. Headlines like this one screamed off the pages of the Volkischer Beobachter, the Nazi party Newspaper: Jews, Abandon All Hope! Our Net is so Fine That There is Not a Hole, Through Which You Can Slip.” With this type of nasty propaganda the Nazis were able to convince many Germans that annihilate Jews was the right thing to do.
Though Hitler acted malicious towards the Jewish race this could have been fixed with some effort put in by the other countries. If they would have ousted Hitler out of power they could have made the German population realize how horrific of a man he was. Another point to consider is if countries like England would have stepped in before Hitler started invading neighboring countries they might have lowered the death count of the Holocaust. They would have prevented Hitler from getting the extra land he needed to build concentration camps. Without the concentration camps he would not be able to kill Jews at record rates, which would result in fewer deaths. If the right steps were taken then World War II would have been less of a disaster.
In conclusion World War II was a disaster not only in the sense that millions of people were killed but in the sense that many countries did not take the initiative to keep peace. World War II taught us to take dictators very seriously and since then the whole world has learned. Many countries have learned from their mistakes in the past and will not make a serious mistake like this in the future.