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Consolidated Treaty of Versailles

I have been assigned Part 2-3 of the Treaty of Versailles. Write a consolidated summary of the original treaty text provisions/wording that you think should have been done differently so as NOT to provide the catalyst for another war. A copy of the treaty can be found here: Treaty of Versailles:

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Please see response attached, which is also presented below. I hope this helps and take care.


Interesting and complicated document!

Have you read the treaty yet? Often, a good place to start an assignment like this is to read secondary sources first (use and search words such as: Treaty of Versailles, the downfall of the Treaty of Versailles, the problems of the Treaty of Versailles, and the likes), where authors have summarized the treaty and made comments in relation to its nature, both positive and negative. This makes a legal document like the Treaty of Versailles (which is difficult for most people) make more sense and make it easier to understand. It will make it easier to attached this assignment. So, let's do that first.

Now, let's take a closer look using the above strategy. I also downloaded the treaty at the end of the response for easy referencing and highlighted (bold) some of the problematic use of word that you could consider changing.

Interestingly, the Treaty of Versailles (1919) was the peace treaty, which officially ended World War I between the Allied, and Associated Powers and Germany. Although the armistice signed on November 11, 1918 put an end to the actual fighting, it took six months of negotiations at the Paris Peace Conference to conclude a peace treaty. Of the many provisions in the treaty, one of the most important and controversial provisions required Germany and its allies to accept full responsibility for causing the war and, under the terms of articles 231-248, disarm, make substantial territorial concessions and pay reparations to certain countries that had formed the Allies. The Treaty was undermined by subsequent events starting as early as 1922 and was widely flouted by the mid thirties. (1)

Thus, articles 231-148 would need to be revised, as would the major goals of the Treaty need to be adjusted and be consistent with each other. Indeed, the goals of the Allies were varied, but yet most reflected the terms of article 231-248 mentioned above, and were written in a way that was demanding and blaming Germany, with both acting as a catalyst for another war, instead of bringing peace, through German retaliation. For example, France's (Georges Clemenceau's) aims can be summarized as follows (acted as a catalyst for another war because these goals were reflected in the writing of Treaty):

1. To gain total control of most of Germany's factories,
2. To humiliate the German people,
3. To permanently cripple Germany's armed forces so France would never be threatened again,
4. And to create a "buffer zone" by demilitarizing the Rhineland. (1)

Since these goals of the Treaty were reflected in the articles (humiliation, crippling the German army, controlling German factories, etc.), the goals would probably need to changed, ...

Solution Summary

This solution examines the Treaty of Versailles. Specifically, it provides direction and illustrative examples for a consolidated summary of the original treaty text provisions and/or wording that should have been done differently so as NOT to provide the catalyst for another war.