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Sabrina Bailey

Treaty of Versailles DBQ


W.C Period 5
Gustav Stresemann, a German politician and statesman, said (1995), As a consequence of the
terms of the Treaty of Versailles, the officer corps of the old army became part of this class, as did that
part of the younger generation who, in the old Germany, could have become officers or civil servants
(Victory Must Be Ours). WWI was fought from 1914-1918. On June 28th, 1919, the Versailles Treaty was
signed. The Versailles Treaty is a peace treaty that ironically meant to end one, but then sparked another
war. The Treaty of Versailles ended WWI and consequently ignited, with the involvement of territorial
loss, reduction in military, reparations, and the War Guilt Clause, the rise of Hitler and the start of the
second world war.
To start off, territorial loss was caused as a result of the Versailles Treaty and was a leading
cause that led to WWII. After WWI, when the treaty was signed, Germanys coal-producing areas,
including Danzig, Polish Corridor, Alsace Lorraine, and a piece of Denmark, were taken. This reduced
Germanys coal-producing areas by forty percent. Not only was the area reduced, but Germany lost one
of its most important port cities and all the profit and manufacturing from it. During this time period Adolf
Hitler said,
. . . the restoration of the frontiers of 1914 could be achieved only by blood (Mein Kampf). Hitler did not
believe that begging and pleading would bring change. In Hitlers eyes only bloodshed would bring
victory (Doc A). The Versailles Treaty caused a lot of problems, but territorial loss was one of the most
problem causing results of the treaty, because not only did it cause Germans to become upset, but it
encouraged bloodshed which led to WWII.
When moving forward, reduction in the military was caused as a result of the Versailles Treaty
and was a leading cause that led to WWII. After the Versailles treaty was signed, Germany was required
to reduce their military down to one hundred thousand men by March 31st, 1920. This number included
officers. Also, the military had to be devoted to the maintenance of order throughout the territory. The
amount of officers and personnel of staff could not exceed four thousand men. During this period of time,
France had the most men, then Poland, then Czechoslovakia, then Belgium, and Germany was left with
the least amount of men in the military. For the reason that France was superior and had the highest
number of men in their military, this caused German politicians and citizens to feel insecure. In the end,
Hitler ended up rearming Germany (Doc B). The Treaty of Versailles caused a lot of problems, but
reduction in military was one of the most problem causing results of the treaty, because not only did it
cause German citizens to feel insecure, but it also pushed Germany to break the rules and for Hitler to
rearm Germany.
When looking from another angle, reparation was caused as a result of the Versailles Treaty and
was a leading cause that led to WWII. On May 1, 1921, the Allied and Associated Powers said Germany
was required to pay $367 billion over a thirty year period due to the damage she caused to the civilian

population during her period of belligerency. The payment had to be completed by May 1, 1951. In 1929,
when it was seen Germany could not follow through with paying off all of the reparations, the amount was
reduced to $341 billion, which is 112 gold marks in Germany. During this time period it was clear that
Germany need money and a strong leader. In 1933, Hitler came to power and stopped all reparation
payments. This action caused germany to become very relieved and thankful. The Treaty of Versailles
caused a lot of problems, but reparations was one of the most problem causing results of the treaty,
because not only was Germany losing control and security, but they had little to no money and this all
pushed them to fight back.
Last but not least, the War Guilt Clause was a result of the Versailles treaty and was a leading
cause that led to WWII. After the treaty was signed, Germany had accepted full responsibility for all of the
loss and damage of WWI. The document that states that Germany takes responsibility is often reffered
rto as the War Guilt Clause and is found in the Treaty of Versailles. Most Germans, however; did not like
the Treaty of Versailles. In fact, most Germans saw it as evil and an atrocious misjustice in which needed
to be destroyed. Many Germans admired Hitler because he reminded citizens of pride and again showed
how to have self-respect. This caused the world to look at Germany as having a fresh start. The Treaty
of Versailles caused a lot of problems, but the War Guilt Clause was one of the most problem causing
events of the treaty, because it caused citizens to listen and agree with their leader, Hitler, and allow him
to lead them into battle.
Although the Treaty of Versailles is said to be the overall reason for the start of WWII, it is not
always clarified what its true components were that actually led to WWII. The components that led to
WWII, stated in the Treaty of Versailles, are territorial loss, reduction in the military, reparations, and the
War Guilt Clause. All of these items caused Germany to want to fight back and once again get more
control than what they had. Each of these are just a handful of situations that prove that the treaty of
versailles not only ended WWI, but ignited the start of WWII.

Works Cited
Treaty of Versailles. (1919). Article 160

Treaty of Versailles. (1919). Article 232

Treaty of Versailles. (1919). Article 233

Treaty of Versailles. (1919). Article 231

Hitler, A., & Manheim, R. (1943). Mein Kampf,. Boston: Houghton Mifflin Company.

Keynes, J. (1920). The economic consequences of the peace,. New York: Harcourt, Brace and Howe.

Moyer, L. (1995). Victory must be ours: Germany in the Great War, 1914-1918. New York: Hippocrene
Books.