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Why Did The Big Three After Wwi Disagree So Strongly?

997 words - 4 pages

After four long and difficult years for all involved, World War 1 was officially declared over in October 1918. The tide had turned against the Axis, and Germany had lost the war. The devastation caused by World War 1 was enormous, with France bearing the brunt of it. All told, 17 million civilians and soldiers died, with 300,000 homes, 6,000 factories and 1,000 miles of railroad destroyed. Much of the damage was in France, and the cost of the devastation was inconceivable. To alleviate the distress at the end of the war, the countries involved decided to have a conference where the blame for the war would be placed on Germany, with three main men acting as the ringleaders at the conference deciding Germany's consequences. These three men, Georges Clemenceau, Thomas Woodrow Wilson, and David Lloyd George were the leaders of the Versailles conference, but each had very different views on the war and varying ideas on how best to punish Germany, and were called the "Big Three".Georges Clemenceau, (better known as "The Tiger") Prime Minister of France, wished to see Germany pay for all the damage and take full blame for the entire war. His views on the war were quite extreme, intensified by his strong dislike for the Germans and their policies on world diplomacy. Completely differing from Clemenceau was Wilson, President of the United States of America. He believed that a gentle reprimand to Germany would suffice, and that all countries should take part in rebuilding Europe without placing the blame solely on Germany. Wilson's and Clemenceau's views on Germany and World War 1 were on completely different ends on the spectrum, but the man who acted as the middleman was David Lloyd George, Prime Minister of the U.K, and a very shrewd diplomat. He believed that Germany was partially responsible and that justice should prevail, but that Europe should not get carried away and exact revenge on Germany, predicting that if that were the case, Germany would have their say 20 years later. He was proven to be surprisingly accurate, and his ideas were in the central region of the continuum, with his rational mind and astute judgement keeping the Versailles conference from being influenced subjectively.The majority of the war was fought in France, with Germany destroying much French industry and commerce. The French and the Germans never had close ties, and World War 1 deepened the rift between the two nations. This led to a deep hatred of the Germans by the French, and was the reason for Clemenceau's hasty and emotional opinions on what punishments should be inflicted on the Germans. As Germany's neighbours, Clemenceau also felt that if Germany were allowed to remain powerful, eventually France and other countries would be invaded by Germany if the Germans were not taken care of when the opportunity presented itself; in Clemenceau's eyes the opportunity being the Versailles conference. Clemenceau was intent on exacting revenge upon the Germans, a very different...

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