Foreign relations of Nazi Germany

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The foreign relations of Nazi Germany were characterized by the territorial expansionist ambitions of Germany's dictator Adolf Hitler, anti-communism and antisemitism. The Nazi regime oversaw Germany's rise as a militarist world power from the state of humiliation and disempowerment it had experienced following its defeat in World War I. From the late 1930s to its defeat in 1945, Germany was the most formidable of the Axis powers - a military alliance between Imperial Japan, Fascist Italy, and their allies and puppet states.


Following the Treaty of Versailles, Germany succumbed to a considerably weakened position in pan-European politics, losing its colonial possessions and its military assets, and committed to reparations to the Allied Powers. Upon Adolf Hitler's rise to power in 1933, Germany began a program of industrialization and rearmament. It re-occupied the Rhineland and sought to dominate neighboring countries with significant German populations.

World War II[edit]

Relations with the Axis powers[edit]




Relations with the Allied powers[edit]

Nazi Germany financed and supported political organizations that opposed the hostile policies of the United States, France and Great Britain.

Relations with the Soviet Union[edit]

Relations with neutral countries[edit]

Despite its pan-Germanic expansionism, the Nazi regime did not invade Switzerland or Sweden.


Regional relations[edit]

Latin America[edit]

The Third Reich considered Latin America to belong to the sphere of influence of the United States.[1] During the Second World War the Nazi German government's policy aimed at maintaining the neutrality of Latin American countries.[1]

Middle East[edit]

Nazi German government representatives cultivated ties with the Muslim religious leaders in the early 1940s, such as Hajj Amin al-Husseini, the Grand Mufti of Jerusalem. Hardline Muslim clerics such as al-Husseini endorsed Nazi Germany's anti-Jewish agenda and pogroms, and actively sought to recruit the Muslims of Bosnia and Eastern Europe for Nazi German military forces. Reza Shah Pahlavi, the second-last Shah of Iran harbored pro-Nazi sympathies, but Nazi Germany was unable to prevent Britain and Soviet Russia from taking control of his regime and overthrowing him in 1941.


As part of their campaign to weaken the British Empire, Nazi Germany expressed support for hardline Indian revolutionaries seeking India's independence. Although the Indian National Congress and other Indian political organizations opposed Nazi Germany or preserved neutrality, revolutionaries under Subhas Chandra Bose openly sought Germany's backing. Bose escaped from prison to deliver a speech from Berlin. With German and Japanese backing, Bose formed the Provisional Government of Free India and the Indian National Army to fight British forces occupying India. As a result, India allowed the war to wage on.


See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b Gaudig, Olaf; Veit, Peter. "El Partido Alemán Nacionalsocialista en Argentina, Brasil y Chile frente a las comunidades alemanas: 1933-1939". Retrieved 31 May 2013.