Wilson And The Treaty Of Versailles

664 words - 3 pages

The Treaty of Versailles was created with the intent of preventing another war. The Allied powers met at Versailles to discuss the treaty without inviting the Central Powers. Although the opposition forces, both liberal and conservative reduced the possibilities of the treaty being passed, The Treaty of Versailles’ defeat was mainly because of Wilson’s quickly changed opinion on reparations, disapproval of senators, and his intransigence towards the treaty.
In the beginning Wilson opposed demanding compensation from the Central Powers, then the Allied leaders convinced Wilson to put reparations on Germany. The reparations set upon Germany was $56 billion, however in the end they only paid $9 billion which was more than Germany could afford. John Maynard Keynes said that the treaty should not deprive Germany of all its belongings, Germany is still made up of human beings and they should not be treated this harshly (Document F). In the ...view middle of the document...

When the treaty was introduced, Lodge would do anything to obstruct, or amend the treaty. As a result of this, when the treaty was sent to the Senate for ratification Wilson gave strict directions to his Democratic allies to not agree on any amendments proposed by Lodge. W.E.B. Du Bois says that because of Wilson’s stubbornness it led to the failure of the treaty and the U.S was not represented (Document H). Since Wilson was ill, he could not be at Congress when the ratification process for the treaty took place. He was stubborn and blinded by his hatred towards Lodge, and would not accept anything other than the original treaty.
Wilson’s intransigence toward the treaty was unbreakable. Herbert Hoover told Wilson that the reservations in the Treaty are too severe and that if the treaty were to be ratified then it would make it more effective in satisfying all parties (Document D). Wilson would not agree to any changes to the treaty even if it could benefit all parties. He wanted to promote all his Fourteen Points for reconstruction for Europe, which was not necessarily opposed by the parties. There were only a few points of the fourteen that needed to be ratified before it could have been accepted. Jane Addams speaks her opinion, which is agreed upon many other women from The Woman’s Peace Party that an international organization was needed (Document I). The people’s opinion on the treaty was that it did the opposite of what Wilson tried his hardest to fulfill. The Treaty of Versailles did not satisfy the aspirations of long lasting peace (Document B). Wilson states that he feels “betrayed” because promises he made were not kept. (Document C). If Wilson was not so stubborn the Treaty of Versailles would have been voted on by the Senate.
The ratification battle for the Treaty of Versailles made sure that every point of Wilson’s Fourteen points would be moral. The parties involved were pleased with most of Wilson’s ideas, however a couple ideas were not as great. If Wilson was not so headstrong and was to agree on a few tweaks on the treaty it would have been accepted. Wilson’s stubborn actions are to be blamed for the defeat of The Treaty of Versailles.

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