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Enviado por gina.torrent • 17 de Febrero de 2013 • 698 Palabras (3 Páginas) • 542 Visitas
To what extent was the Treaty of Versailles fair to Germany?
This essay will deal with analyzing how unfair the Treaty of Versailles was to Germany. As with any peace treaty, the terms are written by the victors and the losers suffers. That is what happened with the Treaty of Versailles, it might have seemed right in the eyes of the winners, but its harshness with Germany was probably one of the causes of the outbreak of World War II. My point of view is that Germany was blamed to harshly, and therefore, the Treaty didn’t raise the expectations and fulfill the reason of it is creation, to avoid a war of these proportions happen again.
Firstly, it would be fair to say that the problems with the Treaty started during the conference. The leaders spoke with different voices, and as Nichola Boushes said: ‘…What they all failed to take into account was that for a plan, a treaty or an arrangement to be successful, everybody has to have the same aims and goals…’ In this case, Wilson (USA) wanted peace and fairness for all the nations involved through his 14 point, while Lloyd George (Britain) and Clemenceau (France), who still bore grudge against Germany for France’s defeat in 1871, wanted revenge and monetary compensation at any cost. The public opinion was that Germany should be punished for the damaged caused; ordinary civilians from the Allied countries had laced shortages and their towns had been devastated. Therefore, when the ‘Big Three’ arrived at the conference, they were already under pressure to punish Germany. This opinion was heightened when it became known how harshly Germany had treated Russia in 1918 and France in 1871. Had this not been the case, maybe the outcome of the Treaty would have been another.
The terms of the Treaty which affected Germany the most were the war Guilt clause, reparations, loss of territory and disarmament. First all, the war guilt clause was very simple but was seen an extremely harsh by the Germans; they had to admit they had caused the war, while in fact Germany got dragged in because of its alliances. This led to the second clause, reparations, according to which Germany had to pay £6600 million for he damage caused. To its already crippled economy, this was devastating.
Furthermore, not only reparations had sunk Germany’s economy, but the other clauses such as the loss of colonies and trade, also contributed to worsen the situation. Other notable aspects of the Treaty of Versailles were the return of Alsace-Lorraine to France, demilitarization of the Rhineland, the prohibition to enter the League of Nations or the join with Austria (Anchluss). Moreover, German citizens found themselves as foreigners in newly-created nations such as Czechoslovakia or Poland. In addition, Germany could not develop it’s military and naval forces. This had devastating consequences for it already weak government, which resisted. People went on strike,
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