Versailles Treaty

The treaty of Versailles was a peace treaty signed at the end of World War I between Germany and the Allies. It was negotiated during the Paris Peace Conference held in Versailles beginning January 18, 1919. The allies represented were the United States, Great Britain, France, and Italy. The German republic was not at the signing. Included in the first section of the treaty was the Covenant of the League of Nations, the world’s first peacekeeping body, which was given the responsibility for executing the terms of the various treaties negotiated after World War I. The treaty was signed on June 28, 1919, in the Hall of Mirrors at the Palace of Versailles.
Because of the Treaty of Versailles, Germany was required to reduce its large army to 100,000; to give up all the territory on the left bank of the Rhine River and also the land on the right bank to a depth of 50 km; to stop all importation, exportation, and all production of war material; to limit its navy to 24 ships, with no submarines, the naval personnel not to exceed 15,000; and to abandon all military and naval aviation. Germany also agreed to permit the trial of former emperor William II by an international court on the charge of “a supreme offense against international morality.” (The trial never took place.)
For damage that was dealt to the alliance, Germany was made to pay large amounts of money. But Germany soon ran out of money and had to pay its debt in livestock, trains, and natural resources.
During the years following the war, Germany was crippled with its debt. Overcrowding and poor living conditions soon followed the treaty. This led to the rise of the Nazi party in the 1930’s.
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