Hitler's Anschluss

map of the Anschluss,
from Life, 1938/10/3
Hitler accepts the ovation of the Reichstag after announcing the 'peaceful' acquisition of Austria, 1938/03, from Patch-NA
Edward R. Murrow
Louis-Schmeling fight 1938/06/22
Joe Louis with wife and mother 1938/06/23
FDR reviewing Fleet in San Francisco under barrel of big naval gun on return from his world tour, 1938/07/14 from FDRL
Hitler speech in Berlin 1938/09/26 (pub'd in ILN on Mar. 25, 1939)
Czechoslovakia before Munich, from Time, 1938/10/3
Chamberlain & Hitler at Munich conference 1938/09/29
Sudeten woman unable to conceal her misery as she dutifully salutes the triumphant Hitler, 1938/09, from Patch-NA
Czechoslovakia after Munich, from Time, 1938/11/14
NY Daily News 1938/10/31
Kristallnacht 1938/11/12
PBY Catalina
Europe after the Anschluss, from Life, 1939/03/27

Feb. 4, 1938 - Hitler created a new command for the German army, the OKW, placing the old Wehrmacht under it as the OKH department and made himself Supreme Commander of the all German armed forces.

Feb. 20 - Anthony Eden resigned as British Foreign Secretary in disapproval of PM Neville Chamberlain's policy of appeasement with Italy and Germany.

March 2 - Russia's 3rd major purge trial began, and would result in the executions of 18 conspirators on March 13, including Nikolai Bukharin and Alexis Rykoff, former Russian premier. The Great Purge preoccupied Russia 1936-38, left it militarily weak, unwilling and unable to help other nations resist the Anschluss.

March 3 - Floods in California leave 200,000 homeless and 144 dead; New England hurricane killed 682; Illinois tornado destroyed towns along the Miss. River; Franco bombed Barcelona; Japan bombed Canton and Hankow in June; Soviet-Japan border war in July near Manchukuo, Mongolia, Korea, and air raid drills in Tokyo.

March 9 - Austrian Chancellor Kurt Schuschnigg opposed Hitler's demand for "Anschluss" or the reunification of German-speaking regions with Germany, calling instead for a plebiscite. However, Hitler continued to mobilize German troops on the Austrian border, and the plebiscite was never held. Schuschnigg resigned March 11 and was replaced by pro-Nazi Interior Minister Arthur Seyss-Inquart.

March 12 - German troops crossed the border and occupied Austria. Hitler stood in his open car in his brown storm trooper uniform as he drove into Vienna. On March 13 he proclaimed the Anschluss and declared that Austria was now the Ostmark, a province of the Third Reich.

March 13 - CBS broadcast its 1st News Roundup via shortwave radio from five European capitals, anchored by Bob Trout in New York, the start of regular daily news reports organized by Edward R. Murrow in London.

March 26 - Hermann Goering warned all Jews to leave Austria.

April 2 - Britain granted recognition to the new Austrian government; the U. S. granted recognition April 6.

April 10 - Edouard Daladier replaced Leon Blum as Prime Minister of France.

April 16 - Anglo-Italian pact granted recognition of Italian conquest of Ethiopia.

April 19 - Franco's Nationalists troops defeated the Republicans and the Lincoln Battalion at Tortosa, drove to the Mediterranean at Vinaroz and isolated Barcelona.

April 24 - Sudeten leader Konrad Henlein demanded autonomy for the German-speaking regions of Czechoslovakia.

"May Crisis" in Czechoslovakia began with Prague's rejection of Henlein's demands and became ominous with the movement of German troops to the Czech border, the May 20 mobilization of 400,000 in the Czech army, Hitler's announcement of a large increase in the size of the Luftwaffe, and increased German fortification of the Siegfried Line on the French border. Fear of war caused the British and Americans to urge Daladier not to honor the 1924 treaty of alliance with Czechoslovakia, and instead seek a negotiated settlement. First black-out test May 16 in U.S.

May 6 - Hitler appeared in Rome with Mussolini for a military review of Italian troops, and in a speech May 14 Mussolini promised the fascist nations would fight together against the democracies if war broke out.

May 17 - Congress passed the Naval Expansion Act to create a 2-ocean Navy.

June 8 - Acting Secretary of State Sumner Welles denounced the bombing of civilians in China and Spain, but Japan continued its attack on the city of Canton.

June 9 - Britain placed an order for 400 airplanes in the U.S.

June 12 - The Chinese open dikes to flood the Yellow River in order to stop Japan's attack, but 1 million Chinese peasants die.

June 22 - Joe Louis defeated Max Schmeling in Yankee Stadium before 70,000

July 11 - Russian-Japanese battle on the Manchurian border until truce signed Aug. 10.

July 15 - Howard Hughes rode in a New York City ticker tape parade to the cheers of 2 million people after flying around world in his twin-engine Lockheed Vega with a crew of 4 in the record time of 3 days, 19 hours, 17 minutes. On July 18, Douglas "Wrong-Way" Corrigan crossed the Atlantic in a solo flight landing in Dublin despite a prohibition by the U.S. and Ireland, saying his compass misled him and he thought he was flying from New York to California. He was given a ticker tape parade in Los Angeles in September.

July 30 - Lord Runciman arrived in Prague to negotiage with the Czechs and Germans.

Aug. 12 - Hitler called up military reserves in Germany, and began military maneuvers. On Aug. 18 Japan issued a call for 1 million military recruits.

Aug. 28 - Sudeten Germans began talks with Czech President Eduard Benes but the Czech government refused any partition.

Sept. 2 - "Prelude to Conquest" from March of Time predicted the takeover of Czechoslovakia.

Sept. 4 - At the dedication of a monument at the Pointe de Grave near Bordeaux where the first Americans landed in WWI, William Bullitt who had been supporting the Runciman negotiations, said "if war should break out in Europe, no one could predict whether or not the United States would be drawn in." (Taylor p. 525) But FDR would not act on Bullitt's recommendation to support a multinational conference.

Sept. 12-30 - Munich Crisis

Oct. 3 - Hitler's army entered the Sudetenland, Konrad Henlein greeted Hitler in Eger, Benes resigned and was replaced by President Hacha; Poland partitioned the Teschen area from Czech, Hungary began to partition much of Ruthenia.

Oct. 9 - Hearst newsreel "First Films of Czech Surrender of Sudentenland!"

Oct. 30 - Orson Welles broadcast of War of the Worlds caused radio panic.

Nov. 10 - Kristallnacht in Germany

Nov. 10 - Kate Smith introduced the song God Bless America, originally written in 1918 by Irving Berlin but never performed in public until Kate sang it on her radio program "Kate Smith Speaks."

Dec. 6 - Franco-German friendship pact signed.

Charles Lindbergh

Real fear of German military

After Munich, FDR switched from Navy to Air Force as main U.S. defense

first B-17 in Seattle, Boeing model 299
B-17E with tail gun, test flight in Seattle, from ILN 1941/09/27

Boeing B-17 - 1st built in 1935, but not developed because was considered an offensive weapon

PBY Catalina - became 4-engine superdreadnaught - 3750 mi. for 30 hrs.



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