Transcript Paris Peace Conference and The Treaty of Versaillesx
Paris Peace Conference and The Treaty of Versailles The Paris Peace Conference • President Wilson led American negotiators attending the peace conference in Paris in January 1919. – His attendance of the Paris Peace Conference made him the first U.S. President to visit Europe while in office. – Republicans criticized Wilson for leaving the country when it was trying to restore its economy. • Wilson’s dream of international peace, though, required him to attend the conference as a fair and unbiased leader to prevent squabbling among European nations. • The Paris Peace Conference began on January 12, 1919, with leaders representing 32 nations, or about three-quarters of the world’s population. • The leaders of the victorious Allies—President Wilson, British Prime Minister David Lloyd George, French premier Georges Clemenceau, and Italian prime minister Vittorio Orlando— became known as the Big Four. • Germany and the Central Powers were not invited to attend. Great Britain, America and France were the three most powerful Allies and they wanted to exert their influence upon the Treaty of Versailles. Yet they wanted different things. Lloyd George (UK) •Germany to be justly punished, but not too harshly •Germany to lose its navy and colonies as these were a threat to Britain's own navy and empire •Germany and Britain to become trading partners BUT Overall, Lloyd George did not want to punish Germany too harshly as he did not want Germany seeking revenge in the future Clemenceau (France) • to cripple Germany so it couldn't attack France again. •Wanted Germany broken down into smaller states (weakened). France had suffered the most during the war so Clemenceau was under great pressure from the French people to make Germany pay. Wilson (USA) • a better and more peaceful world • a League of Nations that would help and support each other and help to promote world peace • the right to self-determination. The right to decide which country you wish to be governed by The U.S.A. had joined war late (1917) and hadn't suffered as much as the other Allies in terms of human and material costs. Treaty of Versailles • Germany looses a great deal of land including overseas colonies. Treaty of Versailles • German army limited to 100,000 men. • No tanks, air force, or submarines. • Demilitarization of the Rhineland. (No weapons or German soldiers allowed in certain areas.) Treaty of Versailles • Reparations- Germany was forced to pay financial penalties known as reparations as a result of World War I. – To pay for damages done in France during the war, somewhere around 6.6 Billion dollars. Too much for the Germans to pay. League of Nations • Treaty of Versailles establishes league of nations whose goal is to keep and promote peace.