Examining the View that the Republic was Politically Unstable Before the Wall Street Crash

Examining the View that the Republic was Politically Unstable Before the Wall Street Crash

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Examining the View that the Republic was Politically Unstable Before the Wall Street Crash

As such the republic was forced upon the German people; from the start
the democracy was unwelcome by the right and more extreme left wing
groups such as communists (KPD) and Spartacists. Elite's supported the
republic through fear of alternatives; many key figures in society;
judges and civil servants disliked republic, In addition to this the
republic was founded after a lost war which Germany was made
responsible for, the infamous article 231 made the Germans hate the
republic even more

Source A is a useful source from Hindenburg, but it doesn't really
show that by what he is saying that Germany is particularly strong at
that time, he says he wants the people the people to "work" with him
to help build a strong Germany and help protect the constitution and
the law. This does not mean the Constitution is not strong but it
seems as if he it is and that he want the Germany to unite and help
restore German pride. By looking at source B you can agree that when
Stresemann says "we are in a midst of parliamentary crisis" you can
tell that Germany was not politically strong and something needs to be
done to sort out the "crisis". There were extreme fluctuations between
the Governments in power as there were many shifts in power; between
August 1923 and March 1930 there were nine changes in the Government
and there were also many different chancellors. Each Government
collapsed easily, which meant that there was no consistency and
therefore, no achievements made. Weimar had experienced numerous
problems between 1924 and 1929, which had mainly been caused by
politics of Weimar and the actions of politicians, which had weakened
the economy. However, Weimar was relatively successful in terms of
international relations through foreign policy. When the Dawes plan
was introduced, Stresemann supported it; however, it faced a lot of
opposition from the SPD, who withdrew their support. This was a
problem as they were a large party and they refused to join the

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coalition. This meant that the SPD had gone from openly supporting the
constitution to then changing their minds. This resulted in a
reduction in Socialist views, which weakened the idea of democracy, as
it didn't allow the socialists to be represented fairly. Disagreements
such as these led to divisions within the parties. From source C can
tell that from 1924 - 1929 there is increasing stability in the
government as people start to move away from the extremist groups such
as the KPD and NSDAP and move toward the centre parties such as the
SPD who continually continue to increase there share of the
votes.Hindenburg managed to partly stabilise Germany by becoming
president as he was part of the old Germany.

Regardless of the political condition, economically Germany was
progressing. Economic stability was established between 1924 and 1925.
This was particularly important to those classes that had been
affected by the 1923 hyperinflation crisis. The establishment of the
Retenmark and the effects of the Dawes Plan allowed there to be a
significant influx of foreign money going into Germany. Reparation
payments were delayed by the Dawes plan and the national income rose
by 12% in 1928, this which meant a higher standard of living than in
1913, industry also had a promising growth rate. The German industry
was reconstructed with the use of generous amounts from the USA. This
was good initially as it caused economic stability. However, this
policy was dangerous, as a downturn in world economy, such as the Wall
Street Crash in October 1929, had led to a rapid withdrawal of
investment, which left the German economy in a disastrous condition.
This in turn had left Germany unstable. Unemployment increased and
savings turned to dust. A greater understanding with France was
established, which is evident from the formation of the Locarno
treaties in 1925 and the revision of the treaty of Versailles. The
first troops came out from the Rhineland which took place five years
ahead of schedule in 1925. This showed an extreme contrast in
attitudes towards Germany. Simultaneously, Germany had built up good
relations with the soviet by the Treaty of Berlin in April 1926, and
by supporting the treaty of Rapallo. This in turn had prompted western
powers to trust Germany.

Although the political situation was weak international relations were
strengthened. The changes in Government in Britain in January 1924, to
MacDonald, and in France in April 1925 to Briand, had enabled
Stresemann to improve allied relations. The new Prime Ministers wanted
to improve diplomacy, avoid war and talk about problems, whereas the
previous Governments still remembered WWI and therefore resented
Germany. When the Governments changed they were more sympathetic and
understanding towards Germany. The change of Governments combined with
the diplomatic skills of Gustav Stresemann help Germany recovery
greatly economically and slightly politically.

Politically, Weimar was unsuccessful and extremely unstable. It was
not popular with the public and it failed in its main objectives.
Economically Weimar was fairly successful, although the Wall Street
Crash had caused numerous problems, it was an unforeseen circumstance.
In spite of the majority of Stresemann foreign policies being
successful, domestic political stability was not achieved. The Treaty
of Versailles had plagued politics; it had made it very difficult for
Weimar to stabilize Germany. It affected politics as shown by the
'Stab in the back theory' and the 'War Guilt Clause'.
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