Why Did The Allies Disagree Over The Treatment Of Germany In 1919?

545 words - 3 pages

The allies disagreed over the treatment of Germany in 1919 because they all had different experiences of war.France is geographically situated right next to Germany, and had the most casualties and damage, as the battles had largely taken place on French soil . They were old enemies, having been humiliated in the Hall of Mirrors at Versailles with the establishment of the Second German Empire in 1870-1871. The Prime Minister, Clemenceau was the Mayor of Paris during the siege of 1870-1871, where the inhabitants were forced to hunt the local rat population for food. France was also humiliated at the annexation of Alsace-Lorraine. France therefore wanted the harshest penalties on the Germans, and wanted money to help to ...view middle of the document...

After the end of World War One, the British were keen to remove this threat. Britain's public were fed propaganda about German atrocities, and were keen to enact revenge. However, the British Prime Minister, David Lloyd George, realised that this may not be in Britain's best interests, as France was Britain's traditional enemy, not Germany, and if the French were not under attack, they could come and attack the United Kingdom. Britain was also concerned about the Russians. If there German army was too weak, Russia could just take over it. The United Kingdom wanted Germany to be a buffer zone, like the Rhineland for France, except with a military defence. Before the war, Germany was the biggest importer of British goods. If Germany's industry was hit too hard, British manufacturers could suffer, as their market would be cut. This would also encourage Russians to invade with a communist revolution, as they could see a weak economy.The United States of America was the furthest away, geographically from the conflict. It had come in to the war late, and in terms of actual financial, and material damage, and the number of casualties, came out relatively unscaved. Woodrow Wilson was the president of the United States of America at the time, and he was coming up for re-election soon. In order to gain votes, he set out to appeal to the immigrants, by offering them a safer homeland in which to live in. Like the United Kingdom, the United States of America was also a big exporter of goods to Germany, and American industries would be hit if the Germans did not have enough money to pay for imports of American goods.

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