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© Boardworks Ltd 2005 1 of 23 Germany and the End of World War I Nazi Germany For more detailed instructions, see the Getting Started presentation. This icon indicates the slide contains activities created in Flash. These activities are not editable.
© Boardworks Ltd 2005 2 of 23 What we will learn today In this presentation you will learn: 1.Why the German government decided to surrender to the Allies at the end of World War I. 2.What the main issues were for the peacemakers. 3.Why the peace treaty which they produced was considered too harsh by many German people. 4.Why the German government nevertheless accepted it, and with what results.
© Boardworks Ltd 2005 3 of 23 Learn some key vocabulary
© Boardworks Ltd 2005 4 of 23 Events in 1918 In late 1918, the Allies were prepared to discuss an end to hostilities, but only on the understanding that Kaiser Wilhelm made his country more democratic. When the Kaiser refused, his people rose up in revolution. The Kaiser was forced to abdicate and a German republic was established. In November 1918, the new rulers signed the Armistice which brought hostilities to an end. The following year, they signed the Treaty of Versailles, which laid out detailed peace terms. For detailed events in 1918, see the next slide.
© Boardworks Ltd 2005 5 of 23 Events in 1918 – timeline
© Boardworks Ltd 2005 6 of 23 Should Germany sign the Armistice?
© Boardworks Ltd 2005 7 of 23 What were the results of the Armistice? Friedrich Ebert, the leader of the Social Democrats (SPD) became the first elected president of the Weimar Republic. The government was called this because it established itself in the small town of Weimar, rather than the unstable Berlin. Signing the Armistice in November 1918 gave the new republic some breathing space. The country’s first free elections were held in January 1919.
© Boardworks Ltd 2005 8 of 23 How did Germany react to Treaty of Versailles? The Germans were expecting to be treated fairly under the Treaty of Versailles. They had got rid of the Kaiser and elected a democratic government as the Allies had asked. However, the Allies did not allow the Germans to take part in negotiations. The Treaty was very harsh on Germany. The German navy scuttled (sank) itself in protest, but it made no difference. The German government signed the Treaty just 90 minutes before the deadline the Allies had set them.
© Boardworks Ltd 2005 9 of 23 The signing of the Treaty of Versailles
© Boardworks Ltd 2005 10 of 23 What issues were dealt with by the Treaty? When the leaders of the Allied countries met to discuss how to treat Germany, they were faced with five key questions. You can remember these using the keyword TRAWL: Territory: What land should be taken from Germany? Reparations: How much compensation money should Germany be forced to pay? Armaments: How far should Germany's armed forces be limited? War guilt: Should Germany be held responsible for the war breaking out? League of Nations: Should Germany be allowed to join this new peacekeeping institution?
© Boardworks Ltd 2005 11 of 23 Territory – further information
© Boardworks Ltd 2005 12 of 23 Reparations – further information The Allies were keen that Germany should pay for the cost of the war. France had lost 1½ million men and 750,000 homes in the war. Britain had also been drained, having lost a million men. Both France and Britain were left heavily in debt to the USA as a result of the war. Germany argued that massive reparations would leave the country destitute. This would make Germany vulnerable to revolution or civil war, which could lead to more international instability.
© Boardworks Ltd 2005 13 of 23 Armaments – further information The Allies felt that Germany’s massive armed forces had created a country that was desperate for war. They were very keen to limit the size of the German army. The Germans argued that this would leave their country defenceless against attack, and that this could make another war more, not less, likely.
© Boardworks Ltd 2005 14 of 23 War Guilt – further information To justify their demands for territory, reparations and arms restrictions, the Allies felt it would be necessary to blame Germany entirely for the war. The causes of World War I were very complicated. The Germans felt that it was unreasonable that they should take full blame for the war, and warned that it would only create a desire for revenge later on.
© Boardworks Ltd 2005 15 of 23 League of Nations – further information The US president Woodrow Wilson was very keen to set up an international parliament to prevent more wars breaking out in the future. Wilson proposed a League of Nations to settle international disputes and prevent war. The Allies disagreed about whether Germany should be allowed to join this body or not.
© Boardworks Ltd 2005 16 of 23 Territory – the terms on paper
© Boardworks Ltd 2005 17 of 23 Territory – the terms on the ground Germany split by the Polish Corridor Alsace-Lorraine returned to France Germany was also forbidden to unite with Austria or Hungary How did each of these terms affect Germany? Which was the most serious, and why? Saar coalfields now under French rule for 15 years African colonies taken away.
© Boardworks Ltd 2005 18 of 23 Other terms
© Boardworks Ltd 2005 19 of 23 Summary The terms of the Treaty of Versailles can be summarized as: Territory: Land lost to Britain, France, Belgium, Poland and Denmark. Reparations: Germany forced to sign a ‘blank cheque’, later settled at £6,600 million. Armaments: Army reduced to 100,000 men. No air force, 6 warships, no conscription. Rhineland demilitarized – German troops were not allowed there. War guilt: Germany held entirely responsible for the war breaking out. League of Nations: Germany not allowed to join.
© Boardworks Ltd 2005 20 of 23 What was the impact on Germany? Look at the areas dealt with in the Treaty of Versailles. Which do you think was the most serious for Germany?
© Boardworks Ltd 2005 21 of 23 Conclusion: reaction of the German people The Treaty of Versailles was hated by Germans. Rathenau, the foreign minister, was assassinated in 1922 for signing the treaty. The Armistice had not led to a fair settlement. The Weimar politicians who signed it were called November Criminals because people felt they had betrayed Germany. Which was more damaging for the new German Republic – losing the war or signing the Treaty of Versailles? Explain your answer carefully.
© Boardworks Ltd 2005 22 of 23 Revision of some key vocabulary
© Boardworks Ltd 2005 23 of 23 Discussion point What was the main aim of the Treaty of Versailles? (a) punish Germany (b) reward the winners of the war (c) provide a lasting peace? Support your answer by referring to the terms of the Treaty. Was it to:
© Boardworks Ltd of 23 These icons indicate that teacher’s notes or useful web addresses are available in the Notes Page. This icon indicates that.
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