Gustav Stresemann is a name familiar in Germany not only because the man who owns it was its chancellor from August 1923- November 1923 or even because he stayed on as the country's foreign minister until 1929, when he died. Although needless to say these factors contribute significantly to his popularity, he was a man known to have stood up for his country at a moment when it needed people like him the most. After the First World War, Germany was in grave trouble. It had lost its international reputation, it was blamed for the start of the war, inside the country there was widespread inflation and the country's currency was more or less useless but the biggest upset for it was none other than the fact that it had lost the war.
At such a crucial time in Germany, Gustav Stresemann advocated Germany’s way back into the world. HE was widely acclaimed throughout Europe for his excellent diplomacy but as soon as he died, doubts began to arise about his intentions. He was loyal to Germany but also very liberal, the doubts were thus justified. After Germany’s defeat in 1919, initially he suffered a blow politically when his party members were few in number and left him to join the Left Wing liberals of the time; regardless Stresemann picked himself up and was helped by the fact that the nature of politics changed post World War 1. He argued that Germany held significant importance in the European market because of its exports and this was something its former rivals also realized. He portrayed himself as a true national and German patriot and regained popularity post World War 1 and then went on to bring Germany back into the world with a new image. Hitler himself too praised Stresemann’s diplomatic abilities but the major question his death leaves for historians today is whether if he would have stayed alive for a few more years (dying at the young age of 51), would he have been able to avert the Second World War through his exceptional diplomacy.
For those studying about Weimar, Stresemann and his efforts are of extreme significance because it is the place where Germany’s first Democratic Constitution was signed. But there is a lot more to Weimar than the article states. Weimar is also known for its heritage and it is a very old city with documented records from as back as the year 899. Similarly another drawback of the source is that a lot of Stresemann’s work and efforts were outside of Weimar. Like the Locarno Treaty which defined the borders laid out in the treaty of Versailles between Germany, France and Belgium as permanent. The article also does not mention the “Golden Years of Weimar” which came in light of Gustav Stresemann’s replacement of the Mark with the Rentenmark and the Dawes Plan which gave realistic and achievable targets for the Germans to achieve in terms of the reparation payments it had to make to the allies.
The article does on the other hand correctly portray Gustav Stresemann’s services to his nation and his attributes as a great diplomat and someone who was farsighted and loyal to his country while at the same time liberal enough to realize the worlds concerns about his nation post World War 1. His diplomacy was a key tool for the world at such a crucial time and there was no question about him being anti-Semitic as his wife was of Jewish decent. He may have well been a key player in the years to come for Germany which were dominated by Hitler and he may have altered the course of the history of the world had he survived. For Weimar, he may have helped the “Golden Years” continue as right after his death in 1929, the Great Depression hit the world and Weimar was also a victim.
"Gustav Stresemann - Biography". Nobelprize.org. 19 Apr 2012 http://www.nobelprize.org/nobel_prizes/peace/laureates/1926/stresemann-bio.html
“Gustav Stresemann”. Spartacus.schoolnet.co.uk.