Was the Treaty of Versailles Fair? - by Laura Aberle
Who can say for sure whether the Treaty of Versailles was fair or not? The answer depends on your point of view. From the French perspective, the Germans deserved to give up everything in order to make amends for the destruction they caused in France. Therefore, the treaty wasn't punishing them enough. From where the American and British leaders were standing, it seemed impossible to place the entire blame on one country, so the Clause 231 must have seemed quite harsh. But the treaty was a compromise - no one got everything they wanted, but more importantly, no one was completely short-changed. Not even Germany. Many of Wilson's peaceful Fourteen Points weren't accomplished, but he had faith in the League of Nations to sort things out later. Clemenceau had wanted nothing but revenge on Germany, and that was definitely achieved, if not to the extent he had hoped for.
Lloyd-George was probably the most content out of the three leaders, because he had wanted a compromise between the French and American ideas to begin with.
What about Germany? Wasn't it unfair to place the entire blame on her, and to make her pay such hefty reparations? It might be argued that the treaty was aimed at completely destroying Germany's economy and that they had lost too much territory and money. People worried that their army would be ruined by it as well. It was argued that the politicians who signed the treaty were tricked because they had thought only Wilson's Fourteen Points had been used in writing it.
Perhaps it was rather severe to make the Germans agree that the entire war had been their fault, but those are only words. The reparations they had to pay because of their...