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World War I (Aftermath) Essay

3488 words - 14 pages

On January 8, 1918, Woodrow Wilson went to Congress to announce his ideas regarding the war affairs of America. He created something known as the Fourteen Points, a plan that would determine the foreign affairs of the United States after World War I (Brower). When looking at the points, it is easy to identify how these were similar in nature, allowing them to be grouped. The first group deals with the points one, two, three, four, and five. These points dealt with the idea of how to maintain peace between nations and reduce the chance of imperialism and war. Instantly, the idea of peace is introduced, as the first point begins with “Open covenants of peace” proving the importance of ...view middle of the document...

This point was specific to Austria-Hungary, Romania, Serbia, Montenegro, Turkey, and Poland. The last group consisted of only point fourteen, which called for creating some form of association to regulate the peace between nations. Wilson wanted a “general association of nations” that was “formed under specific covenants” (“Woodrow Wilson”). This created the League of Nations, an organization determined to reduce war and maintain a balance of peace. All these points were made to create peace between all nations, as well as give independence to the smaller nations forced into the war.
When looking at the points, it is easy to determine that the plan will probably extremely effective and will help maintain peace around the world. However, the plan did not work and would not work. It is clear that this plan was meant to boost the powers of the Allies. Therefore, all Allied nations would accept the plan, believing it will bring them higher power as well as protection from future war. Moreover, the Central Powers would believe that this plan is used for “war propaganda purposes” as it would make the Allied nations look stronger and more peaceful, making them more desirable (Brower). Therefore, they would not agree on the plan, causing an ultimate failure. Instead, the Treaty of Versailles was made in order to maintain peace between European nations.

FRANCE: After World War I, France sought revenge against Germany, as Germany was the reason many lives were lost and why France’s economy was weak. The French wanted to inhibit “Germany's ability to make war” and punish them harshly for the numerous crimes they commit (Axelrod). Also, France wanted land and compensation for the crimes. The representative who went the Conference was Georges Clemenceau, the French Prime Minister (“Signing the Treaty”). Due to the war, the economic state of France was destroyed. France had lost a significant amount of money, as all of its spending was directed to military. Plus, trade and production of certain goods had decreased, causing less revenue. Most of the nation was in poverty and the prices of goods skyrocketed, creating high levels of inflation (Axelrod). The number of factories producing steel and coal lessened, and also many businesses close. The government also had a shift, becoming a stronger example of social democracy. The Third Republic continued to live strong without any opposition. They had still been in a better government position. The real problem obviously lay in the fact that the economy was terrible. After the signing of the Treaty of Versailles, France got Alsace-Lorraine back. This was significant as France’s economy as they would gain the resources of iron and coal once again, even though major production had decreased (Axelrod). They also received territorial land from Africa that was originally a part of the German Empire, as well as reparation including coal from Germany in order to pay off their crimes (Biesinger). All of this came...

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