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In diplomatic and historical contexts, appeasement refers to the foreign policy of Britain and France toward Nazi Germany during the late 1930s, which culminated in the Munich Pact (September 30, 1938), and is understood as making political or material concessions to avoid war by satisfying the demands brandished by an aggressive Adolf Hitler. This entry will first examine the roots and rise of appeasement and will then go on to detail the political, diplomatic, and scholarly reactions to the policy and its influence on foreign policy decisions up to the present.

Although the roots of appeasement lay chiefly in the fragility of post–World War I collective security arrangements and in the failure of the League of Nations, it became indelibly associated with British prime minister Neville ...

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