The Treaty of Versailles in June 1919 was an attempt at a treaty towards Germany directly after World War 1. It was signed at the Hall of Mirrors in Louis XIV’s Palace of Versailles in France. It was treaty to provide peace in Europe and the world after the First World War, mainly focusing on creating peace with Germany. There were 4 main powers involved in the treaty. Those were France, Britain, USA and Italy. Each country was represented by an individual.
- Georges Clemenceau for the French
- David Lloyd George for the British
- Woodrow Wilson for the Americans
- Vittorio Orlando for the Italians
Georges Clemenceau spoke the views of the French public and his personal beliefs. He wanted Germany to be stripped of their land, industry and armed forces. He thought Germany would attack France in the future so he believed Germany should never be able to start another war again.
David Lloyd George wanted to reestablish Britain as the dominant world order, as well as pursuing the fact that Germany be smashed of their weapons and military. He was also concerned with the rise of communism in Russia at the time and feared it might spread to Western Europe. He believed that this spread of communism was almost a greater threat to the world then a defeated Germany.
Woodrow Wilson wanted fair and lasting peace within the world, or otherwise known as “peace without victory.” He agreed with the beliefs of Clemenceau and Lloyd George, but also wanted all armed nations of all nations to be reduced. After the Versailles Treaty he created the League of Nations, to ensure European and worldwide peace.
Vittorio Orlando simply wanted more land for his country and a port on the East Adriatic Sea.
Wilson was the central figure of the peace conference, largely due to the fact that the Americans had the financial stability where as many other European countries did not.   All of the representatives had their separate views on the situation, but in the end there were 4 main issues taken from the peace treaty that affected Germany, those were:
1. They were given the guilt for the outbreak of the war
2. They were forced to disarm their army to 96,000 men and 4,000 officers for at least 12 years
3. Their boundaries were reduced to neighboring countries such as France, Belgium, Denmark and Poland
4. They were charged for material damage done by the war, a bill of 6,600 million pounds given
Many historians believe that the Second World War was a repeat performance of the problems of 1919 that were not resolved. The Germans eventually found a way to break the system, and continued to develop and train their military even though they were specifically told not to. Although they were stripped of all their weapons, they found a way to later create and improve their past weapons to more successful modern ones, and this led to the Rise of Hitler and Germany in the 1930’s.