Versailles Treaty Dbq

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On June 28, 1919, Germany and the Allied Powers signed the Treaty of Versailles, formally ending one of the bloodiest wars in modern history. World War I caused the deaths of nearly ten million soldiers and up to thirteen million non-combatants. Catastrophic property and industry losses occurred, especially in France, Belgium, Poland, and Serbia. So in an attempt to avoid future conflict of the same scale, the Allies allowed the Central Powers no participation in the treaty’s negotiations, stripped Germany of many of its territories, blamed it for the war, and imposed substantial reparation payments. However, although the Allies were hopeful that these measures would ensure peace in the future, the Versailles Treaty has been cited as a…show more content…
In Wilson’s program, he included fourteen main actions he advocated the Allied Powers taking, many of which surrounded redefining territory borders and providing Eastern Europeans with complete autonomy and self-determination. For example, points VI, VII, and X advocated that the Allies evacuate Russia, Belgium, and Austria-Hungary’s territories and allow the countries self-determination. Also, point IX supported reconstructing Italy’s borders around lines of nationality and point XII recommended that the Allied Powers create an independent Polish state out of territories with large Polish populations. Additionally, in the Fourteen Points, Wilson called for an abolition of secret treaties, a reduction in national armaments, a change in colonial claims in the interests of natives and colonists, the removal of economic barriers between countries, and a world organization that would provide collective security for all…show more content…
He also supported upholding secret treaties and a potential naval blockade. However, like Wilson, Lloyd George was wary of creating too harsh terms that would cause German resentment against the Allies. Also, because Germany was Britain’s second largest trade partner, too harsh reparation payments would lower British trade. “Overall, Lloyd George 's aims can be summarized as follows: to defend British interests by preserving Britain’s naval supremacy that had been threatened by Germany, to maintain Britain’s empire, to possibly increase colonial expansion, to reduce Germany’s future military power and to obtain reparations, and to avoid creating an embittered Germany that would seek revenge and threaten peace in the future.” Although their aims were significantly different, both Lloyd George and Clemenceau were aware that because of the United States’ status as an economic superpower, it was likely to become a military one as well in the future. Therefore, in order to avoid angering the U.S. they both supported point XIV of Wilson’s Fourteen Points, creating the League of

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