ZOTOVA E.V. Great Britain and German-Polish Relations, 1929–1931

DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.15688/jvolsu4.2014.6.5

Zotova Ekaterina Viktorovna

Postgraduate Student, Department of International Relations and Foreign Area Studies,

Volgograd State University

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Prosp. Universitetsky, 100, 400062 Volgograd, Russian Federation


Abstract. The article deals with the study of British-German relations during the period of exacerbation of territorial disputes between Germany and Poland in 1929-1931. Germany was making plans for revising the eastern borders. It sought to enlist the support of the new Labour government. Britain didn’t only approve of Germany's intention to carry out revision of the Treaty of Versailles (reparation issue, the evacuation of the Rhineland and the change in the German-Polish border), but also supported the strengthening of the political and economic situation in Germany as a whole.

Assistance to Germany was advantageous for Britain. Firstly, the British support helped to improve the capacity of the purchasing power of the German market as one of the traditional markets of the English sale. Secondly, the strengthening of the position of the German cabinet meant failure of the French policy in Europe at this stage. The defeat of France in a dispute on the issue of early evacuation of the Rhineland would seriously devalue the foreign policy initiatives of Paris. Thirdly, the British government hoped that Germany will go into orbit of British political influence. The identity of the positions of the German and the British cabinets were considered as the components of British policy success not only in relations with France and Italy, but also with Czechoslovakia and Poland.

Since the formation of the MacDonald’s cabinet, anti-Polish moods increased in the British course for the settlement of German-Polish relations. However, the threat of an attack on Poland by Germany was regarded by the government of Britain as unacceptable way of resolving the German-Polish conflict.

Britain tried to follow the traditional foreign policy concept of “balance of power”, but the inefficiency of British policy “mediation” in European affairs was clearly shown in times of growing financial and economic crisis. The issue of the German-Polish border remained unsolved.

Key words: German-Polish relations, British diplomacy, labourists, Central Europe, liquidation agreement, H. Bruning, H. Rumbold, London Naval Conference 1930.

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Great Britain and German-Polish Relations, 1929–1931 by Zotova E.V. is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.

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