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What Document Formally Ended Ww1

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First, a “Council of Ten” (composed of two delegates from Britain, France, the United States, Italy and Japan) met officially to decide on the terms of peace. This Council was replaced by the “Council of Five”, which was composed of the foreign ministers of each country to discuss minor issues. French Prime Minister Georges Clemenceau, Italian Prime Minister Vittorio Emanuele Orlando, British Prime Minister David Lloyd George and US President Woodrow Wilson formed the “Big Four” (which became the “Big Three” after the temporary withdrawal of Vittorio Emanuele Orlando). These four men met in 145 closed sessions to make all the important decisions that were then ratified by the entire assembly. The smaller powers participated in a weekly “plenary conference” that discussed the issues in a general forum, but made no decision. These members formed more than 50 commissions that made various recommendations, many of which were included in the final text of the Treaty. [30] [31] [32] France had lost 1.3 million soldiers, including 25% of French men aged 18 to 30 and 400,000 civilians. France had also been physically damaged more than any other nation (the so-called red zone; the most industrialized region and the source of most of the coal and iron ore in the northeast had been devastated, and in the last days of the war, mines had been flooded and railways, destroyed bridges and factories.) [33] Clemenceau intended to ensure France`s security by weakening Germany economically, militarily, territorially and by supplanting Germany as the leading steel producer in Europe. [33] [34] [35] [incomplete short citation] British economist and Versailles negotiator John Maynard Keynes summed up this position as an attempt to “set back time and undo what Germany`s progress had accomplished since 1870.” [36] On June 28, 1919, the Treaty of Versailles was signed at the Palace of Versailles near Paris, France. The treaty was one of many that officially ended the five-year conflict known as World War I. The Treaty of Versailles defined the terms of peace between Germany and the victorious Allies, led by the United States, France and the United Kingdom. Other Central Powers (notably Austria-Hungary) signed various treaties with the Allies.

The Treaty of Versailles was signed by Germany and the Allies on June 28, 1919 and officially ended World War I. The terms of the treaty required Germany to pay financial reparations, disarm, lose territory and abandon all its overseas colonies. He also called for the creation of the League of Nations, an institution that President Woodrow Wilson strongly supported and that he had initially described in his fourteen-point speech. Despite Wilson`s efforts, including a national tour of speakers, the Treaty of Versailles was rejected twice by the United States Senate, in 1919 and 1920. The United States eventually signed a separate peace treaty with Germany in 1921, although it never joined the League of Nations. The Paris Peace Conference opened on January 18, 1919, a significant date in that it marked the anniversary of the coronation of German Emperor Wilhelm I, which took place at the Palace of Versailles at the end of the German-French War in 1871. The Prussian victory in this conflict had led to the unification of Germany and the conquest of the provinces of Alsace and Lorraine from France. In 1919, France and its Prime Minister Georges Clemenceau had not forgotten the humiliating loss and intended to avenge it in the new peace agreement. French historian Raymond Cartier notes that millions of Germans from the Sudetenland and Poznań in West Prussia were placed under foreign rule in a hostile environment where harassment and rights violations by the authorities are documented.

[ix] Cartier claims that out of 1,058,000 Germans in Poznań-West Prussia in 1921, 758,867 fled their homeland in five years due to Polish harassment. [ix] These intensifying ethnic conflicts led to public demands in 1938 to reconnect the annexed territory and became a pretext for Hitler`s annexations of Czechoslovakia and parts of Poland. [ix] The treaty was comprehensive and complex in the restrictions imposed on the post-war German Wehrmacht (the Reichswehr). These provisions were intended to render the Reichswehr incapable of offensive action and to promote international disarmament. [67] [n. 18] Germany was to be named by 31. In March 1920, enough soldiers were demobilized to leave an army of no more than 100,000 men in a maximum of seven infantry divisions and three cavalry divisions. The treaty established the organization of divisions and support units, and the General Staff was to be dissolved. [No. 19] Military schools for officer training were limited to three, one school per branch, and conscription was abolished. Private soldiers and non-commissioned officers should be detained for at least twelve years and officers for at least 25 years, with former officers prohibited from participating in military exercises. In order to prevent Germany from constituting a large number of trained men, the number of men allowed to leave early was limited.

[No. 20] The armistice was practically a German capitulation, as its terms put an end to any possibility of Germany continuing the war. Similar agreements had already been signed by Bulgaria, Turkey and Austria. However, the peace treaties that officially ended the First World War were not signed until 1919. On 5 May 1921, the Reparations Commission drew up the London payment list and a final reparation sum of 132 billion gold marks to be demanded by all the Central Powers. It was the public assessment of what the Central Powers could pay together, and it was also a compromise between belgian, British and French demands and assessments. In addition, the Commission acknowledged that the Central Powers could not pay little and that the burden would fall on Germany. As a result, the sum was divided into different categories, of which Germany had to pay only 50 billion gold marks ($12.5 billion); This was the Commission`s sincere assessment of what Germany could pay and allowed the Allied Powers to save the public`s face by presenting a higher figure. In addition, payments made between 1919 and 1921 were taken into account, reducing the sum to 41 billion gold marks.

[98] [99] After Scheidemann`s resignation, a new coalition government was formed under Gustav Bauer. Federal President Friedrich Ebert knew that Germany was in an impossible situation. Although he shared his compatriots` disgust for the treaty, he was sober enough to consider the possibility that the government could not reject it. He believed that if Germany refused to sign the treaty, the Western Allies would invade Germany – and there was no guarantee that the army would be able to take a stand in the event of an invasion. In this spirit, he asked Field Marshal Paul von Hindenburg whether the army was capable of significant resistance in the event that the Allies resumed war. If there was any chance that the army could hold out, Ebert wanted to advise against ratifying the treaty. Hindenburg – at the urging of his chief of staff Wilhelm Groener – came to the conclusion that the army could not resume war, even to a limited extent. However, instead of informing Ebert himself, he asked Groener to inform the government that the army would be in an untenable position if hostilities resumed. Upon receipt, the new government recommended the signing of the treaty. The National Assembly voted by 237 votes in favour, 138 against and five abstentions (a total of 421 delegates) to sign the treaty.

This result was sent to Clemenceau just a few hours before the deadline. Foreign Minister Hermann Müller and Colonial Minister Johannes Bell travelled to Versailles to sign the treaty on behalf of Germany. .

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