It is easy to blame Hitler for starting the war.

Hitler's aims were aggressive, and he openly stated them in his book 'Mein Kampf' in 1924:

  1. destroy the Treaty of Versailles
  2. create a Greater Germany (a country of all the German people)
  3. lebensraum (living space) - to conquer land for Germany in Eastern Europe

Once he came to power, Hitler set about doing exactly what he had said he would do. For each of his actions between 1935 and 1939, can you see which aim(s) he was fulfilling by undertaking:

  • 1935 - rearmament
  • 1936 - remilitarisation of the Rhineland
  • 1938 - Anschluss with Austria
  • 1938 - the annexation of the Sudetenland
  • 1939 - the invasion of Czechoslovakia
  • 1939 - the invasion of Poland