Italian-German Alliance Announced

Mussolini in Munch 1937

On November 11th, 1937, Italy joined an anti-comtern (communist) pact already in force between the Japanese and the Germans. The pact established the Triple Alliance that became known as "The Axis"

Italian and German interests had begun to align. Both countries were supporting the right-wing forces of General Franco in Spain. In addition, Italy wanted to be the dominant force in the Mediterranean, but thwarting that goal was the British Navy. On September 25, 1937, Mussolini visited Hitler in Munich. Together they watched army maneuvers and then visited arms factories in Essen, Germany.

On November 6, Italy joined the anti-communist Pact that had been signed already by Germany and Japan. The Germans and the Japanese had begun to negotiate a treaty in 1936. There were apparent ideological similarities between Japan and Germany at the time. At first, the Germans were reluctant to offend the Chinese who were fighting the Japanese and were significant trading partners, but Hitler overrode those concerns. The agreement included a secret protocol that both countries pledged mutual defense if the Soviets attacked one.

the text of the public agreement

Clear ideological similarities between Japan and Germany at the time. The Government of the German Reich and the Imperial Japanese Government, recognizing that the Government of the U.S.S.R. is working toward

a realization of the aims of the Communist International and intends to employ its army for this purpose; convinced that this fact threatens not only the existence of the High Contrading States but endangers world peace most seriously; in order to safeguard their common interests, have agreed as follows:

Article 1: Should one of the High Contrading States become the object of an unprovoked attack or threat of attack by the U.S.S.R., the other High Contrading State obligates itself to take no measures which would tend to ease the situation of the U.S.S.R. Should the case described in paragraph 1 occur, the High Contrading States will immediately consult on what measures to take to safeguard their common interests.

Article 2: For the duration of the present agreement, the High Contrading States will conclude no political treaties with the U.S.S.R. contrary to the spirit of this agreement without mutual consent.

Article 3: The German as well as the Japanese text of the present agreement is to be deemed the original text. The agreement comes into force simultaneously with the agreement against the Communist International signed today and will remain in force for the same period.