Adolf Hitler by John Toland (PT10)

Hitler’s irrational expansionist desires, however, didn’t stop at Austria for the annexation of Austria only encouraged his plans; this culminated in a fresh series of threats against Czechoslovakia. Possessing a large German minority Hitler sees the country as a bulwark to greater conquests in the East. So of course the obstacle must be removed.

To accomplish this task he orders his propaganda chiefs to initiate a new campaign aimed at stirring up public dissent to the point where the situation not only remains uneven but reaches a zenith where the German armed forces may intervene under the guise of saving the nation form bloodshed.

While his efforts does create discord within the country it is not to the point where they can intervene on a timely manner and so Hitler increases his bluffs by mobilizing the military and ordering them to take up positions along the Czech border. This inflammatory move sets of a new European crisis thus threatening the peace of a continent.

The world powers thereby begin a long string of diplomatic conversations with Hitler. While they try their best to placate him, disregarding Czech sovereignty, Hitler continuously revises his intentions thus making negotiations difficult; one moment he consent to agreements while the next he abhors them. These roundabout political maneuvers are, however, part of his master plan to wear down and force the European powers to a black and white decision: surrender Czechoslovakia or risk war. In the end the bluff is Hitler’s and despite being significantly weaker than his rivals wins his demands.

This great bluff would pay off again when he mixed it with deception. For while he gained control of a good deal of Czech territory this was only through a legal agreement. In addition still great swathes of the aforementioned land still retained independence; Hitler had gained control of a fraction of Czechoslovakia but not the whole pie.

He needed a reason to occupy the rest and just as the sun rises in the morning he got his reason. Such came in the form of the inexperienced Czech president. An attempt to crackdown on internal dissidents (declaring martial law) resulted in Hitler launching a massive propaganda campaign demonizing the act. This campaign paid off and aroused pro-German natives to riot. This only further provoked the president to take more actions yet his efforts would be cut short as Hitler issued an ultimatum which, in effect, said: absorb into Germany or face destruction. The president met with Hitler and after some hours of pitiful debate the Czech president capitulated giving to Hitler his country’s last vestiges of freedom.

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