Preface by Timothy Garton Ash and Gerhard A. RitterThe history of British-German relations in the twentieth century has been characterized by a remarkable dichotomy of friendship and hostility. What started as a family affair with Kaiser Wilhelm II, the grandson of Queen Victoria, and his admiration for the British Navy, soon turned into a violent struggle for superiority in Europe during two World Wars. After 1945 the two countries became allies, if not friends, again. But when Germany was reunified in 1990, Prime Minister Thatcher did not hesitate to warn that history might repeat itself, referring to the creation of the German Reich in 1871 as the starting-point of the European tragedy. This book considers the most critical aspects of this volatile relationship during the past 100 years: the rivalry at sea before World War I, David Lloyd George and the Weimar Republic, the appeasement policy of the 1930s and Rudolf Hess's flight to Scotland in 1941, the post-World War II period of occupation and partnership, and the British attitude toward the new Germany post-1990.
'Encompassing and rich in perspective, this important volume is required reading not only for historians, but also for those policy-makers on both sides of the Channel who strive to build a better, common future in a stable and prosperous Europe' Christian Hacke, Chair of Political Science and Contemporary History, Bonn University 'This collection of essays, brimming with new insights, will generate lively and lasting debate in both Britain and Germany. All raise important questions about key episodes in British-German relations, all offer brilliant - and frequently startling- answers. Anthony Glees, Professor of Politics, Brunel University 'Due to the contemporary focus of the book's central issues and the conciseness of its contributions, it also proves to be profitable for German readers.' Europaeische Geschichte