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Would you consider that the Treaty of Versailles (1919) was a fair treatment? Justify your view. (1990)

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Wong Sin Hang??? 7A1 St. Gloria College 1995-96 Would you consider that the Treaty of Versailles (1919) was a fair treatment? Justify your view. (1990) It is true to say that the Treaty of Versailles in 1919 was a fair treatment on the side of some victorious powers because they got many national interests and only Germany, which was the major defeated country, accepted punishments. However, on the viewpoint of the defeated, it was a harsh and unfair treatment. Even some of the victorious countries, like China, Italy and Russia, as well as the USA regarded it as an unfair treatment. After the First World War, the Powers held the Paris Peace Conference in 1919. However, all the defeated countries and Russia were not invited and the Conference was dominated by President Wilson??? of the USA; Clemenceau????, Prime Minister of France; Lloyd George??�??, Prime Minister of Britain, i.e. the 'Big Three'. Among them, Clemenceau wanted to have revenge on Germany and weaken Germany as far as possible. In this Conference, the most important treaty was the Treaty of Versailles in 1919 with Germany. ...read more.


First of all, it helped the spread of nationalism and liberalism. Because of the principle of national self-determination, many new states were created. Besides, most new states and defeated countries became liberal republics. Moreover, the League of Nations created many humanitarian organs, e.g. Red Cross, World Health Organization and International Labour Organization. On the other side, it had its demerits. Firstly, the new states were too weak and unable to solve post-war problems and easy to be invaded by aggressors, e.g. Sudetenland??? by Hitler in 1939. Secondly, because of no invitation of the defeated countries and Russia to the Conference, it made them discontented and worsened the relationship between the western Powers and them. For example, Stalin of Russia never recognized the loss of the three Baltic States in the Versailles Treaty. Hitler in 1935-36 even ordered conscription, occupation of the Rhine, built up air forces, in 1938 annexed Austria, in 1939 annexed the Sudetenland of Czechoslovakia and invaded Poland, which were all deliberate violations of the Versailles Treaty. Moreover, it also had effects upon the subsequent development of Italy and Japan. ...read more.


This absence of the US made the Versailles Treaty liable to be violated, as France and Britain were declining. No superpower was able to contain Hitler, Mussolini and Stalin. So, it is true to say that the Versailles Treaty sowed the seed of World War II. Lastly, it did not arrange methods to deal with the problem of economic recovery of Europe. The Powers only made the defeated countries pay indemnities. Thus, these countries were facing economic hardship in the 1920s and the whole of Europe was economically weak and unstable. After that, they could hardly survive the challenges of the Great Depression in the 1930s. Only the Soviet Union was not affected by the Great Depression. All in all, the Versailles Treaty solved some problems brought about by the First World War but actually it created more problems which partly led to the outbreak of the Second World War. So, on the side on some victorious countries that had got national interests, they would think that the Versailles Treaty was a fair treatment. On the other hand, the defeated countries and Russia were dissatisfied with this treatment. Besides, even some victorious countries like China, the USA and Italy felt discontented with this treatment although this treaty was directly or indirectly related to them. 1 1 ...read more.

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