Unrest in Post-WWI Germany

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KAISER WILHELM II had ruled the German Empire as a monarch.  When there was a period of violent unrest in Germany after the First World War, the Kaiser abdicated in November 1918. Many different groups in Germany with different opinions rushed to seize power.  There was mutiny in the navy, cities were taken over by workers' councils and disillusioned soldiers returning from the war kept their weapons and formed an illegal, right-wing paramilitary force known as the Freikorps

In early 1919, a new government took power.  They were led by a man calledFriedrich Ebert. The new government became the WEIMAR REPUBLIC.  It was known as the Weimar Republic because it was set up there (rather than Berlin, where there was too much violence).  Ebert became the first Chancellor of the Weimar Republic.  He was the leader of the Social Democratic Party (SPD).  It was Ebert who had to sign the Versailles Treaty in June 1919.  At first he refused, but realistically he had very little choice - he couldn't risk the Allies restarting the war.  

There were

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