Fear over spread of Communism

Many British politicians regarded Communism as a greater threat than Nazi Germany. Their negative views were reinforced by the brutal show trials if the 1930s in Stalin's Soviet Union. A common saying at the time was:

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better Hitlerism than Communism

During the 1930s, Britain had a National Government. This was formed from members of the Conservative, Liberal and Labour parties. The largest group came from the Conservative party.

The Conservatives believed that Hitler's Germany could be a strong defence against possible Soviet plans to invade Europe. Soviet involvement in the Spanish Civil War (1936–1939) raised suspicions about their aims.