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"What were the German objections to the Treaty of Versailles and how reasonable were they?"

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Introduction

"What were the German objections to the Treaty of Versailles and how reasonable were they?" It has often been thought that the Treaty of Versailles was an overly harsh treaty, especially by the Germans. But though on a few points the Germans objections where unjustified as they had just lost the largest ever war in history, not to mention the most expensive, some of there objections were valid. For instance the peace treaty was not a mutual treaty. The allies had allowed no room for discussion and the Germans had no input into the treaty, therefore it was a dictated peace. Having allowed the Germans a slight input, maybe even to say what was viable, would have probably been a good idea. And at the end of the day it would have eliminated Hitler's argument about the Diktat, namely that it was not morally binding. ...read more.

Middle

Alsace-Lorraine was one of the major objectives of the French. The Germans were thoroughly annoyed by the creation of the Polish Corridor and the splitting of East Prussia from main Germany. The Allies justified this by saying that they wanted to get Poland a piece of coast. But secretly they were trying to produce a substitute for Russia with Poland. Germany had a bit of ground to stand on because there were a few Germans in the Polish Corridor and Danzig was completely German. But Danzig was not handed over to Poland but instead declared a free city. Germans however did have grounds to complain over the loss of Upper Silesia. The Allies made a concession and a plebiscite was held and Germany retained 2/3 of it whereas the rest went to the Poles. The Germans however had much more of an argument over the loss of their African Colonies. ...read more.

Conclusion

This I feel is a valid point as it is difficult to pin the whole blame on Germany especially because there were only 6 short weeks in which to decide who had started the war. The final term of the treaty was that Germany had to pay a huge amount of Reparation. Eventually it totalled �6.600 million. This was thought, and rightly so, to be far too harsh. Even the Economic adviser J.M. Keynes said that it should be put down to �2000 million. The Germans argued that the original sum was ridiculous and unpayable, which in the end it was. Eventually the Allies admitted they had been wrong and through the Young Plan lowered it to �2000 million. In the end the Germans did have valid points in some of their objections, whereas in others they were just arguing for the sake of it. But the Germans can count themselves lucky as if Clemenceau had had his way it could have been crippling whereas it only had the effect of annoying the Germans and giving them reason to retaliate. ...read more.

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