Paris Peace conference- The big three
In January 1919, leaders of the USA, Britain and France gathered in Paris to reach a peaceful settlement for Europe's problems.
Woodrow Wilson- President of the USA
-An idealist: believe the perfect solution could be found.
-Published his fourteen points as a guide for peacemaking.
- Core beliefs : To achieve world peace in the future, nations would have to co-operate
A nation had a right to self determination, a right to rule themselves ( made colonialism unacceptable)
-the last of the fourteen points was that the league of nations would be set up.
-the most leniant of the three, did not want to punish germany harshly.
George Clemenceau- Prime minister of France
-Promised his country that Germany would never be able to touch them again.
-has three main aims: Alsace lorraine be returned to france.
Germany must pay for French suffering, with money and land.
They must lose land on the border to make france feel more secure.
-The most aggressive of the three, argued his case strongly.
David Lloyd George- Prime minister of Britain
The most compromising of the three.
-wanted germany punished but not too harshly for them to want revenge.
-only said what the people wanted to hear to win the election.
-Wanted to protect british naval interests. He still wanted to be able to trade with germany.
The three clashed dreadfully,but on the 28 of june, they emerged from paris and left to sign the Treaty Of Versailles.
Terms of the Treaty of versailles.
-The Saar was given to the league of Nations for 15 years, followed by a plebiscite.
-Colonies were given to Britain and France.
- The rhineland became a demiliterised zone.
-Alsace Lorraine was returned to france
-Polish corridor was created and given to poland (with the port of Danzig.)
-German army limited to 100,00 soldiers
- Conscription was banned, had to be volunteers.
- not allowed tanks, submarines or military aircraft.
-only 6 battleships.
War guilt and reparations
Due to the war guilt clause (clause 231), Germany was forced t accept responsibility of the war.
this provided justification for their punishment.
In 1921, the total reparations payment was £6.6 billion, they were to pay it over 42 years.
Strengths of the treaty
Initially signed by 45 countries- world wide agreement to end world war.
Reorganised the map of the world- most borders are still around today.
Accepted as a genuine attempt for a war free world.
Weakness of the treaty
deeply unpopular (especially among the germans... as you can imagine)
Japan and Italy felt they were insufficiently rewarded for their efforts in the war.
US congress rejected it
Many British people believed it to be too…