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The Age of Appeasement: The Evolution of British Foreign Policy in the 1930s
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The Age of Appeasement: The Evolution of British Foreign Policy in the 1930s (Paperback)

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Synopsis

This is a study of the step-by-step process of foreign policy-making within the British government from 1931 to 1939. It aims to pinpoint the origin, evolution and nature of appeasement, the principal policy makers' viewpoints and activities in policy-formulation and their responsibility for encouraging the aggressive powers. From a global point of view the author brings Far Eastern appeasement into the picture, emphasizing that the Manchurian crisis in 1937 was the starting point of appeasement and the prologue to World War II. He throws fresh light on the role of ministers and senior officials in the Foreign Office, particularly Eden and Vansittart, demonstrating that they were not anti-appeasers; in fact, he argues, they were arch-appeasers. He analyzes the policy of rearmament and points out that being closely interelated in the government's policy-making, appeasement and rearmament offered a premise to each other: appeasement could reduce the financial burden of rearmament, and a limited rearmament was supposed to enforce the position when concessions were sought.

The book also studies relations between Britain and other anti-fascist countries such as France, America and the Soviet Union to explore why their co-operation against aggression resulted in failure.

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