How Responsible was the Soviet Union for the *rise* of Nazi Germany?

May 2018
1,069
Michigan
Many threads often try to support nationalistic agendas about "who did more to defeat Hitler/Napoleon." Certainly, much Soviet blood was spilled to stop Nazi Germany (and almost none in stopping Imperial Japan), but I recall that the Soviet Union was an actively assisting Germany skirt Versailles restrictions on their military, and Stalin invaded Poland in willing concert with Hitler and supplied the Third Reich with a great deal of resources during the non-aggression pact. They also provided access to various ports and bases to circumvent the British blockade.
 

Chlodio

Forum Staff
Aug 2016
5,097
Dispargum
If anything, the Soviets allowing Weimar Germany to circumvent Versailles was a safety valve. Without the Soviet aid, Germany would have felt more oppressed and victimized and therefore more vulnerable to political extremists like Hitler. Germany was going to develop blitzkrieg tactics with or without Hitler.

When you get into the events of 1939, I do think Stalin helped Hitler, but I can't blame Stalin for placing his country's interests ahead of every other country. Stalin's first choice was an alliance with the West, but at the time of Munich the West rejected him. The blame is on the West, not on Stalin.
 
May 2018
1,069
Michigan
Ok but by the 1940s, the Nazi party had already "risen" in Germany.
It goes beyond rising in the 1920s and early 1930s: would Hitler have invaded Poland if he had not had Soviet assurance they wouldn't interfere? Did the resources acquired in the 1940 agreement significantly assist the German war effort to murder/enslave Slavic peoples in Russia?
 
May 2018
1,069
Michigan
If anything, the Soviets allowing Weimar Germany to circumvent Versailles was a safety valve. Without the Soviet aid, Germany would have felt more oppressed and victimized and therefore more vulnerable to political extremists like Hitler. Germany was going to develop blitzkrieg tactics with or without Hitler.

When you get into the events of 1939, I do think Stalin helped Hitler, but I can't blame Stalin for placing his country's interests ahead of every other country. Stalin's first choice was an alliance with the West, but at the time of Munich the West rejected him. The blame is on the West, not on Stalin.
I don't blame the West, either. By Munich, Holodomor already had a special meaning in Ukraine. Stalin had already pulled "Holocaust" level numbers in less time than Hitler did. At that point, Hitler was just a racist. Stalin had already committed mass murder.
 
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Dec 2017
421
Florida
It goes beyond rising in the 1920s and early 1930s: would Hitler have invaded Poland if he had not had Soviet assurance they wouldn't interfere? Did the resources acquired in the 1940 agreement significantly assist the German war effort to murder/enslave Slavic peoples in Russia?
I would say yes. Hitler was being appeased by the rest of the European powers up to that point so they were to him a minimal factor. Would the Polish invasion have been as successful? Maybe not, it's a what if.
 
May 2018
1,069
Michigan
I would say yes. Hitler was being appeased by the rest of the European powers up to that point so they were to him a minimal factor. Would the Polish invasion have been as successful? Maybe not, it's a what if.
I disagree: Hitler felt "Checkmated" by Britain's guarantee of Polish sovereignty, and restructed his relationship with Moscow, seeking something of a detente to counter British support.
 
Dec 2017
421
Florida
I disagree: Hitler felt "Checkmated" by Britain's guarantee of Polish sovereignty, and restructed his relationship with Moscow, seeking something of a detente to counter British support.
Do you have evidence to support that claim?

I think Hitler did not feel cornered due to the previous event of the invasion of Czechoslovakia. Neither Britain nor France did anything when he moved past the Sudetenland.