When Germany, France, Great Britain and Italy signed the Munich Agreement in the early hours of 30 September 1938, the Nazis recaptured the Sudetenland from Czechoslovakia, where ethnic Germans live mainly along the Czech border. The treaty also allowed Germany to retake Czechoslovakia, which they officially did on March 15, 1939. It should be noted that Czechoslovakia was not represented at the conference that decided the fate of that country. The agreement is later seen as a failed attempt to avoid a war with Nazi Germany. As the threats to Germany and the European war have become increasingly evident, opinions have changed. Chamberlain was awarded for his role as one of the “Men of Munich” in books such as the Guilty Men of 1940. A rare defence of the wartime accord came in 1944 from Viscount Maugham, who had been the Lord`s chancellor. Maugham regarded the decision to establish a Czechoslovakian state with large German and Hungarian minorities as a “dangerous experiment” in the face of previous disputes and described the agreement, which stemmed mainly from the need for France to free itself from its contractual obligations in the face of its vagueness to war.  After the war, Churchill`s memoirs of that time, The Gathering Storm (1948), claimed that Chamberlain`s appeasement of Hitler had been wrong in Munich, and noted Churchill`s pre-war warnings about Hitler`s plan of attack and Britain`s folly of disarmament after Germany reached air parity with Britain. While acknowledging that Chamberlain was acting for noble reasons, Churchill argued that Hitler should have resisted in Czechoslovakia and that efforts had to be made to involve the Soviet Union. The New York Times made the front page of the Munich agreement: “Hitler receives less than his claims from the Sudetenland,” and reports that a “joyful crowd” had applauded Daladier on his return to France and that Chamberlain had been “wildly applauded” upon his return to the UK.  Joseph Stalin was angry at the results of the Munich conference. On May 2, 1935, France and the Soviet Union signed the Franco-Soviet mutual aid treaty aimed at stemming the aggression of Nazi Germany.
 The Soviets, who had a treaty of mutual military assistance with Czechoslovakia, felt betrayed by France, which also had a treaty of mutual military assistance with Czechoslovakia.  However, the British and French generally used the Soviets as a threat to swing over the Germans. Stalin concluded that the West had actively agreed with Hitler to transfer a central European country to the Germans, causing fear that they would do the same in the future with the Soviet Union, which allowed the division of the USSR between Western nations. This conviction led the Soviet Union to steer its foreign policy towards a rapprochement with Germany, which eventually led to the signing of the Molotov-Ribbentrop Pact in 1939.  London, FridayThe Munich Agreement gives Hitler everything he wants (first), except to the extent that it may not be entirely possible to get it as quickly as he would have done under Godesberg`s full ultimatum. He will begin tomorrow the invasion of Czechoslovakia, as he threatened in his speech of 12 September. It is free to occupy all the regions where the Sudeten Germans are the majority, and this by leaps and bounds. In the face of tensions between the Germans and the Czechoslovakian government, on 15 September 1938, Benes secretly proposed to cede 6,000 square kilometres to Czechoslovakia in Germany, in exchange for a German accession agreement of 1.5 to 2.0 million South Germans that expelled Czechoslovakia.