Setting up the Bases for the Home Run
By 1937 it was becoming clear to many of the leaders that Hitler was planning to expand Germany past its boarders that had been set by the Treaty of Versailles in 1919. It had already occupied the demilitarized Rhineland and was beefing up its armed forces as well as support Fascist regimes such as Nationalist Spain in their civil war against the Republicans. Many felt Hitler needed to be stopped before he annexed more and more of Europe, but no one wished for another great war that had happened two decades prior. In late 1937 Hitler was making plans to annex in union or Anchluss with Austria as well as recover the Sudetenland lost to Czechoslovakia after World War I. Many of the leaders of the European nations looked to appeasement to contain Hitler from starting a European war at the least.  According to Spielvogel, “Halifax intimated to Hitler that the British would not oppose changes in Austria, Czechoslovakia, and Danzig provided they were reasonably presented and executed peacefully” (194).
In addition to not wanting to spark a European war, many of the nations that would oppose Hitler did not always get along as they had in World War I or as they would later allied in World War II. Take the Czech Republic as an example.  Czechoslovakia was supposed to be allied with France and the Soviet Union, however, the French would not come to their aid if the British were not willing to support the French in case of a war in Europe. In addition, the Soviets depended on French backing, which would not come without British support as well (Spielvogel 196).
In the end, the Nazi’s got both Austria and the Sudetenland, which set them up for their later conquests of the rest of Czechoslovakia and Poland and their drive east in 1939 and subsequent drive west in 1940. If the supposed allied powers would have stood up to Hitler and the Nazi’s when they were in their infancy then maybe the war would have been shorter or not happened at all. However, hindsight is 20/20 and many of the allied leaders could not foresee what Hitler already knew and had plans to happen. By making these early moves, Hitler brought more persons into the reich and strengthened the military and economic situation in Germany, thus preparing for the war in ’39 and prolonging it for six years versus maybe a year or two if he had been stopped prior to early ’38.
 Spielvogel, Jackson J. and David Redles. Hitler and Nazi Germany. Pearson. Boston. 2014. pp 194
 Spielvogel, Jackson J. and David Redles. Hitler and Nazi Germany. Pearson. Boston. 2014. pp 196