The Rapallo Pact (1922)

The treaty of Rapallo was an agreement signed on 16th April 1922.

Russia and Germany agreed to renounce all territorial claims against each other and agreed on mutual friendship.

It led to industrial and military collaboration that enabled Germany to evade many of the terms of the Treaty of Versailles.

  • German companies, such as Krupp, built factories in Russia and produced products that Germany was banned from producing under the Treaty of Versailles.

  • Germany organised military training in Russia for dismissed German officers, which in turn helped to train the Russian Armed Forces.

Why did France feel threatened by the Treaty?

France was believed to be the common enemy of both Germany and the USSR at the time.

  • Germany hated France as they had pursued a harsh Treaty of Versailles and were unwilling to negotiate.

  • The USSR felt isolated as France was anti-communist and was diplomatically hostile to them as France disliked that the Bolshevik Government had surrendered and signed the Treaty of Brest-Litovsk.

Can the Treaty of Rapallo be seen as a genuine attempt at strengthening the future relationship between Germany and the USSR?

In my opinion, yes it can be. This is because at this time, Germany (the Weimar Government), was socialist, while Communist Russia felt isolated from Europe due to the hostility of anti-communist powers, such as Britain and France.

Therefore, the anti-Communism of France and Britain made their friendship a natural one.