1936 Remilitarization of the Rhineland

1. Details about event

In March 1936, Hitler sent troops into the Rhineland. The troops were ordered to retreat at the first sign of French opposition. However there was only verbal protest. So that his troops were able to stay in Rhineland, he offered France a peace treaty for the next 25 years.

2. How helped to consolidate/maintain power

It helped to consolidate his power because as he was rising to power, one of his promises was that he would reverse the Versailles Treaty. Since demilitarization of the Rhineland was one point of the VT, it showed his supporters that he was serious about fulfilling his promises.

Additionally, it showed him how far he could go with this foreign politics. Since the Rhineland was meant to be a buffer between France and Germany, there could have been a much more negative response with the remilitarization. That Hitler was able to install troops in the Rhineland showed him that the other countries would not invade Germany right away, although he actually disregarded the Treaty of Versailles and agreements of Locarno.