Germany Breaks Munich Agreement

As the threats to Germany and the European war have become increasingly evident, opinions have changed. Chamberlain was awarded for his role as one of the “Men of Munich” in books such as the Guilty Men of 1940. A rare defence of the wartime accord came in 1944 from Viscount Maugham, who had been the Lord`s chancellor. Maugham regarded the decision to establish a Czechoslovakian state with large German and Hungarian minorities as a “dangerous experiment” in the face of previous disputes and described the agreement, which stemmed mainly from the need for France to free itself from its contractual obligations in the face of its vagueness to war. [63] After the war, Churchill`s memoirs of that time, The Gathering Storm (1948), claimed that Chamberlain`s appeasement of Hitler had been wrong in Munich, and noted Churchill`s pre-war warnings about Hitler`s plan of attack and Britain`s folly of disarmament after Germany reached air parity with Britain. While acknowledging that Chamberlain was acting for noble reasons, Churchill argued that Hitler should have resisted in Czechoslovakia and that efforts had to be made to involve the Soviet Union. 29-30 September 1938: Germany, Italy, Great Britain and France sign the Munich Agreement by which Czechoslovakia must cede its border and defensive regions (the so-called Sudetenland) to Nazi Germany. German troops occupied these territories between 1 and 10 October 1938. On his way back from Munich, Chamberlain told an excited crowd at Heston airport: “It is peace for our time” and he praised the agreement he had signed with Hitler. This was the culmination of the policy of appeasement. Six months later, Hitler stopped his promises and ordered his armies to invade Prague. Within a year, Britain and France were at war with Germany.

An agreement was reached on 29 September and.m on 30 September 1938, Adolf Hitler, Neville Chamberlain, Benito Mussolini and Edouard Daladier signed the Munich Agreement. The agreement was officially put in place by Mussolini, while the Italian plan was almost identical to Godesberg`s proposal: the German army was to complete the occupation of the Sudetenland by 10 October and an international commission should decide the future of other controversial territories. Meanwhile, the British government has asked Benea to ask for a mediator. As he did not want to sever his government`s relations with Western Europe, the heirs reluctantly agreed. The British appointed Lord Runciman, the former Liberal cabinet minister, who arrived in Prague on 3 August to convince Benes to accept an acceptable plan for the Sudeten Germans. [23] On 20 July, Bonnet informed the Czechoslovakian ambassador in Paris that France, while publicly declaring its support for the Czechoslovakian negotiations, was not prepared to go to war on the Sudetenland. [23] In August, the German press was full of stories of Czechoslovakian atrocities against the Sudeten Germans, with the intention of forcing the West to put pressure on the Czechoslovakians to make concessions. [24] Hitler hoped that the Czechoslovaks would refuse and that the West would feel morally justified in abandoning the Czechoslovaks to their fate.

[25] In August, Germany sent 750,000 troops along the border with Czechoslovakia, officially as part of military maneuvers. [9] [25] On September 4 or 5,[23] Erbe presented the fourth plan, which met almost all of the requirements of the agreement. The Sudeten Germans were invited by Hitler to the prairies to avoid compromise,[25] and the SdP organized demonstrations which, on 7 September, provoked a police operation in Ostrava, during which two of its deputies were arrested. [23] The Sudeten Germans used the incident and the false allegations of other atrocities as a pretext to interrupt further negotiations. [23] [26] The British public expected an imminent war, and Chamberlain`s “statesman`s gesture” was initially applauded.