20th – 21st Century Europe History

Subject: American History
Type: Argumentative Essay
Pages: 6
Word count: 1562
Topics: Cold War, World War 1, World War 2

Many historians claim that WWII was just an extension or a continuance of WWI? Do you agree with this statement?

It is possible for one to argue that World war II is more or less an extension of world war I. Looking at Europe’s History, there exists various connections and relationships between world war I and the world war II (Michael & Paul, 2014). Despite the fact that the two events are separated by approximately twenty years, the effect of the first world war apparently had a hand in the commencement of the second world war. Therefore, these paper objectively focus on proving that world war II was a continuance of world war I as argued in various sources.

During World War I, Adolph Hitler served in the army of Germany as one of the messengers during which he was injured and hospitalised. Unfortunately, during this time a treaty was signed that led to the end of world war I without his knowledge. In a bid to make things right, he ordered the signing of the surrender by France in the second world war to be done in the train car. The same train that the Germans signed the treaty in 1918. This is one of the treaties that led to the end of World War II.

In the above paragraph, the treaty being signed by the French in the same car that the Germans signed their treaty to end world war I shows a relationship between the two wars. The two treaties that ended the two world wars were signed in the same train which shows that the activities of world war I were extended into world war II. Adolf Hitler played a role in the first world war and a bigger role in the second world war. This means that in this context the second world war continued the first world war.

There is the event associating the dictatorship and revocation of the Versailles treaty signed in the first World war to the commencement of the second world war. This is attributed to the rise of Adolph Hitler, a dictator, into power who previously made a big participation in world war I. Versailles treaty was a peace treaty signed so as to end the first world war but as soon as it was dishonoured, the According to John (2005), he provides various historic evidences arguing towards this case. I. In his book, he mentions the Versailles treaty which was one of the major causes of the second world war, a treaty that blamed Germany for the war and they had to pay for the war expenses. In contrasting the two wars, the author covered the experience of Adolph Hitler. When Adolph Hitler rose to power, he was involved in many aggressive actions which caused interruption to the Versailles treaty. He made a vow that was to overthrow the treaty and he exactly acted as he vowed to. He did this by dishonouring the advice from his allies and taking over the country Poland, an act that led to the start of World war II. In his book “Cold War, a new history”, John added that “For the first time in history no one could be sure of winning, or even surviving a great war” (John, 2005).

When looking at the first and second world war with respect to the author’s argument, he portrays the relationship between the two wars. After the end of the first world war and Hitler rising to power, the nation was able to smell the second world war. Hitler, revoking the treaty was an act of disturbance to the nations involved and would lead to a rise in conflict. In addition, it is the treaty that was signed during the first war that caused the beginning of the second war therefore providing the proof that the second war extended the events of the previous world war.

It is also alleged that the second war was a result of German bankruptcy and humiliation that led to the rise of fascism that was attributed to world war I. The country faced a period of depression right after world war I, accompanied by many debts and extreme politics that crippled the economy. These led to a continuation of the first world war into a second phase, world war II.

In the book “Post war reconstruction in Europe” by Mark, Jessica and David, they argue that after world war I, Germany became bankrupt and faced a lot of influence by the extreme politics. The global economy weakened leading to a great depression that was greatly felt by Germany. They also wrote that Adolph Hitler rose to vengeance on the impacts of the treaties signed in the first world war that led the nation to bankruptcy. He gained the support of the Germans by promising good jobs and riches to the poor as well as support of other allied nations into his racist and prejudice ways (Mark, Jessica and David, 2011).

This evidence can be linked beyond no reasonable doubt to the connection between world war I and world war II. This may be based on the fat that the start of second world war solemnly depended on the economic consequence of the first world war. The adverse economic consequences that include huge debts and economic depression frustrated Germany. This led to launch of attacks on other states that spread to the rest of the world leading to world war II.

In the augment of some historians, they still stipulate that second war was a continuance of first war. The appeasement signed between world war I and world war II, that admitted to the demands of Germany, Italy and Japan so as to prevent war can be associated with world war II. These appeasements were done with an aim of avoiding war but it could not stop war but instead only delayed the war that was coming alongside it. This was because not all countries were appeased and a greater conflict came up.

According to Winston Churchill in his book “Second World war”, he provides a detailed information on the European appeasement treaty. In his book, he mentions that “the first step in the recreation of the European family must be the partnership between France and Germany” (Churchill, 2005). He explained the appeasement policy that was implemented which may have not been a wise decision especially now that it did not manage to appease all the nations involved. The author goes ahead to mention that Japan was barely appeased even with the fact that she was a better part of the Allies. This situation increased the desire for Japanese to send away the Europeans out of Asia. On the other hand, the author also mentions that through this, the three nations realised more strength than weaknesses and viewed the nations as weak. They therefore launched attacks on several nations that facilitated the rise of world war II.

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In as much as the Asians tried to stop world war I by admitting to the demands of powerful nations, this still provided more roots for the rise of world war II. The three nations took advantage of their extra power to humiliate the other nation which later grew into a global war. Therefore, the second world war can be termed as a continuation of the previous war. 

Limitation of Sources

In John’s statement that “For the first time in history no one could be sure of winning, or even surviving a great war” (John, 2005), he is influencing the thinking of the reader. He stipulates that however, the second war was linked to the first war, the second war was quite stronger in geographical coverage as well as intensity of the war. This illustration was quite bias since all the nations were generalized in this assumption including some African nations that did not physically take part in the war.

Winston Churchill’s statement also had a weakness. He said that in order to create the European family again, the first step must be to partner France and Germany. According to his statement, without the partnership between France and Germany, the European family was not able to re-exist. This words may have been spoken by Churchill so as to boost his political career since by this time he was getting deeper into the German politics. In Europe today there are many countries that can collaborate to strengthen the European Family apart from just France and England. Therefore, this view is not strong enough.


In conclusion, arguments towards world war two being a continuation of world war one has been undoubtedly proven by a number of historians including Winston Churchill and John Lewis among other historians. They have argued facts from the world war one that led to origin of world war two. They included the treaty of Versailles, economic depression in Europe and the appeasement policy that was adopted in Europe admitting to the demands of Germany, Italy and Japan. Due to their extreme effects, these events instead of stopping war, fuelled conflict among the European countries that spread across the world resulting to the second world war. Therefore, it is right that World War two extended world war one.

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  1. Michael, D. and Paul, R. (2014). Twentieth Century Europe: A Brief History, 1900 to the present.
  2. Churchill, W. (2005). The Second World War. London: Penguin.
  3. John, L. (2005). Cold War. A new history.
  4. Mark, M., Jessica, R. and David, F. (2011). Post War Reconstruction in Europe.
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