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How satisfied were the Allied Leaders with the Treaty of Versailles?

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Introduction

How satisfied were the Allied Leaders with Treaty of Versailles? The Treaty of Versailles was a peace treaty that officially ended World War l. The three most influential people who decided what how harsh the restrictions were on Germany, politically, militarily and economically were Clemenceau of France, Lloyd George of Britain and Woodrow Wilson of America Even before meeting in Versailles, the leaders of Britain, France and the United States had stated their different aims and objectives for the peace conference. France had wanted Germany to be punished, Britain wanted a relatively strong but economically viable Germany and the United States wanted the creation of permanent peace as soon a possible but with financial compensation for its military expenditures. The result of these contradictory goals among the three leaders was a compromise, which ultimately left none of them completely satisfied. The leader of France, Clemenceau, largely represented the people of France in that he wanted revenge upon the German nation as much of the war had been fought mostly on French land, which left the country in ruins. ...read more.

Middle

The leader of the United States, Woodrow Wilson, had his 14 points published 1918 stating his demands for the treaty. These included self-determination which meant that colonies should allow people of the same nationality to govern themselves and one nationality should not have the power to govern another, a League of Nations, German troops to leave Russian, Belgian and French territory and for Poland to become independent and have access to the sea. However, Woodrow Wilson was not completely satisfied by the treaty, For one, not all of his aims in his "14 points" had been carried out and when he returned to America, the senate refused to join the League of Nations and to sign the Treaty of Versailles. The leader of Britain, Lloyd George, supported Clemenceau over the matter of reparations but overall wanted a less harsh treaty compared to France. Lloyd George was aware of the potential trouble that could come from an weak Germany if they grew strong again, and he felt that a less harsh treaty that did not engender vengeance would be better at preserving peace in the long run. ...read more.

Conclusion

Therefore, the three main nations in the lead up to the treaty were far from united on how Germany should be treated. The eventual treaty seemed to satisfy everyone on the sides of the Allies. For France, it appeared as if Germany had been smashed; for Britain, Lloyd George was satisfied that enough of Germany's power had been left to act as a buffer to communist expansion from Russia; Woodrow Wilson was simply happy that the proceedings had finished so that he could return home. However, the victors did not all get what they desired because of their conflicting aims, which were not negotiable so the end result did not please all three leaders. For example, Britain did not want a harsh treaty whereas France did as a revenge tactic for Germany's part in the war and therefore the treaty was harsher than Britain wanted. So I think that all three Allied leaders were to some extent satisfied with the Treaty but as they all had different aims to one another, not all of their aims were filled. Jess Kimber ...read more.

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