Czechoslovakia is a member of the League of nations.
According to Article 16 of the League of Nations Convention, when it is threatened by force, no matter where the threat comes from, it will receive the guarantee of full and sufficient assistance from the League of nations and its Member States, including Britain and France.
Unfortunately, neither the treaty nor the allies have brought real security to the Czech Republic.
Apart from the Soviet Union, no country has made clear in this tense situation and seriously prepared to give due assistance to the Czech Republic when the incident occurs, and no country is willing to fight for the interests of a small country.
After the outbreak of the Sudetenland German crisis, the Soviet Union proposed to the Czech Republic that the Soviet Union was ready to fulfill its treaty obligations even if France did not assist the Czech Republic.
However, the Czech Republic did not accept it in the end.
Czechoslovak president Benes finally decided to accept the terms of Munich and did not want to fight alone or with the Soviet Union as the only ally, mainly because he was unwilling to make his country suffer the damage caused by the war against Germany and a large number of casualties.
He also believed that if the Soviet Union participated in the war, the West would think that the Czech Republic was a tool for bolshevikization in Central Europe and would give up in a German Soviet war.
France and Britain held consultations on the annexation of Austria by Germany just over a week ago when the problems in the Sudetenland region emerged.
The attitude of the two countries is consistent.
Of course, France said in theory that they were ready to defend Czechoslovakia to show respect for their treaty obligations.
However, in fact, they were not ready for the battle at all, which was clearly pointed out by the French military head.
They had solemnly warned that the main strength and most resources of the French army were placed on the Maginot line along the northeastern border of France.
It does not have the conditions to wage a war outside its own borders.
This is, of course, the result of France’s defensive strategic decision.
There are no clear treaty obligations between Britain and Czechoslovakia.
Moreover, they don’t want to fight at all.
They don’t want to fight for the interests of a remote small country in Central Europe.
British Prime Minister Chamberlain opposes all decisions not made by the British government to participate in the war, and is very afraid of the volatile situation in Central Europe that may drag Britain into the war.
So when he consulted with French Prime Minister dalaidi and his colleagues, it was easy to find a common language.
The two sides did not hesitate to adopt the policy of compromise and appeasement in order to seek a “peaceful solution” to the Soviet Taiwan German crisis.
In April 1938, dalaidi went to England to consult with Chamberlain.
Chamberlain told daladi that Britain would not fight for Czechoslovakia and advised France to do the same.
Chamberlain and daladi both believed that all the demands of the were merely “justice” for his compatriots in Czechoslovakia.
Chamberlain even said: “Hitler demanded national autonomy, not conquest.
” Britain and France agreed that the British government would warn Germany “fully aware of the dangers of what they have done”.
At the same time, the two governments took joint diplomatic action in Prague to urge the Czech government to make greater concessions to Germany.
To this end, on the one hand, Britain and France said that they would not be involved in military conflict under any circumstances.
On the other hand, on May 7, the envoys of the two countries in Czech Republic formally requested the Czech government and the Sudetenland German Party to reach a “comprehensive and lasting solution”.
Hitler did not open his mouth, but the British and French governments put more and more pressure on the Czechoslovak Government.
They want Czechoslovakia to give greater concessions to the Sudetenland Germans.
Prague finally could not resist the pressure from all sides and announced the pardon of 1200 Nazi political prisoners.
At the same time, it allowed hanlain to implement policies such as elections and expanding the rights of the Germanic nation in the Sudeten region.
However, at the instigation of Berlin, Hanley abruptly suspended negotiations with the Czech government on May 19 on the grounds that the government refused to fully self-government in the Sudetenland region.
On the same day, German newspapers reported the mobilization of the army.
Four German motorized divisions had assembled on the Czech border and were fully prepared to attack Bohemia.
The British and French governments are extremely disturbed by Germany’s attempt to use force and threat of force to solve the Sudetenland German issue and not hesitate to undermine the stability of Europe.
Britain and France decided to exert pressure and influence on Germany to force Germany to act within the scope acceptable to Britain and France.
In other words, we should solve the problem without using force through compromise.
Therefore, in the next 48 hours, Europe witnessed the busiest diplomatic activities and the most intense military preparations after August 1914, which was the last manifestation of the unity of Britain, France, the Soviet Union and the Czech Republic in resisting German aggression.
In the face of German provocation, the Czechoslovak Government issued a “partial mobilization order” on May 20 to recruit reserve personnel and some technicians.
On May 21, the French foreign minister issued a statement pointing out that if the German army invaded Czechoslovakia, France would fulfill its obligations under the Treaty of mutual assistance between France and Czechoslovakia.
On the same day, the British ambassador to Germany also made it clear to the German foreign minister that if France fulfilled its obligations under the Franco Czech mutual assistance treaty, the British government could not guarantee that it would not intervene under the pressure of the incident.
British Foreign Secretary Harry fax put it more simply: “the German Czech war means the French German war, so it may become the British German war sooner or later.
” During this period, the Soviet government also issued several statements to take all measures with France and Czechoslovakia to ensure the security of Czechoslovakia.
Kalinin, chairman of the presidium of the Supreme Soviet of the Soviet Union, even publicly stated: “the mutual assistance treaty does not prohibit each party from providing assistance, and there is no need to wait for France.
” The international tension caused by the confrontation on the Czech German border has formed the so-called “may crisis”.
In this crisis, although Britain, France, Czech Republic and the Soviet Union have different positions and starting points, they have some common interests in resisting Germany’s use of force to threaten a small country and undermine the peace and stability of the whole Europe.
Under such circumstances, Hitler’s advisers agreed on the need for political retreat.
They warned that the German military machine could enter Austria without resistance, but it was not ready to fight on two or even three fronts at the same time.
Under the pressure of many parties, Hitler instructed the foreign ministry to tell the Minister of Czechoslovakia that Germany had no intention of aggression against Czechoslovakia, and the German ArmyThe rumor of gathering at the German Czech border is “groundless”.
On the 26th, hanlein was ordered by Hitler to resume negotiations with the Czech government.
The “may crisis” was temporarily eased.
The tough stance of Britain and France in the “may crisis” does not mean that they have abandoned their established appeasement strategy.
Their aim is still to maintain “peace” at any cost.
Therefore, as of July 26, Chamberlain sent Lord Walter rensieman to Czech Republic in an “unofficial capacity” to act as the “mediator” between the Sudetenland German Party and the Czechoslovak Government, opening the way for the “universal appeasement” policy of Britain and France.
Renciman ran between Sudeten and Prague, constantly intimidated the Czechoslovak Government, and tried to reach a compromise between Britain and Germany at the cost of dismembering Czechoslovakia.
In order to win the sympathy and support of international public opinion, President Benes made the final concession.
In addition to refusing to accept the request that Czechoslovakia should reverse its foreign policy, President Benes agreed to almost all the demands of the Sudetenland German Party, including the establishment of a fascist regime for some residents in a democratic Czechoslovak Republic.
When President Benes handed over the compromise plan to the British side, he made it very clear in an attached note that the final concession was made by him and his government under the direct pressure of British and French diplomatic representatives.
However, his view was that the proposal was not likely to be accepted by the Germans because of the well-known plans of the Berlin government and the objectives of the hanlein party.