History with Batman
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Behind the Scenes
Germany, a nation in central Europe, is one of the most important nations in the European continent. The region was first settled by Germanic tribes during the Roman Empire. They led countless offensives against the Romans and were eventually responsible for its downfall. Until the 19th Century, there were dozens, even hundreds, of kingdoms who shared the common language of German. In 1871, Otto von Bismarck, fresh from victories against France, united the kingdoms into the German Empire. Industrialization accelerated and by the start of World War I, Germany was one of the leading industrialized nations.
Due to a treaty with Austria-Hungary, Germany became involved in World War I. In 1917, Germany launched a new offensive to break the stalemate of trench warfare. The nearly successful campaign was halted by the timely arrival of American troops. Exhausted, the Germans negotiated a cease-fire, hoping to keep their territorial gains from the cease-fire with Russia (which fell to civil war). However, the Allies assigned full blame on the conflict on Germany and demanded massive reparations with destroyed the German economy. In these difficult times, the German people turned to the radical Austrian Adolf Hitler. After being appointed Chancellor in 1933, he made his Nazi Party the only official political party and began to murder his enemies, mostly Jews.
In 1939, Germany invaded Poland. The technologically superior Germans overwhelmed the Polish defenses and in 1940 Germany conquered France. Fresh with these successes, Hitler launched a bombing campaign against Britain, a campaign in North Africa, and a campaign in Russia. However, he quickly started making questionable strategic decisions. By 1943, the war turned against Germany. In 1944, British and American troops landed in France. With the front in Russia collapsing, Germany became occupied in April 1945. Knowing the war was lost, Hitler killed himself and a week later the remaining commanders surrendered.
Occupied Germany was divided into two sectors: the western sector was occupied by Britain, America, and France while the eastern sector was occupied by the Russians. West Germany became a democratic state while East Germany became a socialist member of the Soviet Union. Thanks to the Marshal Plan, West Germany became the economic powerhouse it once was. In 1989, the East German regime collapsed and Germany became reunified in 1990. Today, Germany is a leading nation in diplomacy, science, technology, and economically.
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