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azadi

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Reply with quote  #16 
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Originally Posted by Wessexman
Who knows what they would have supported or what might have occurred. It is a distinct issue from whether they were justified in preventing the union.

Also, you didn't answer my question.

I'm sick and tired of British Germanophobia. You are basically repeating Entente propaganda. I'm not proposing Germany not losing territory after World War I. I'm merely proposing more lenient terms. Germany should still have ceded Alsace-Lorraine to France. France was unreasonable during the negotiations for the Treaty of Versailles. France wanted to partition Germany. That's unacceptable. France ought to have been content with regaining Alsace-Lorraine. Britain was more reasonable than France during the negotiations for the Treaty of Versailles, because Britain didn't support partition of Germany, but Lloyd George still wanted to punish Germany harshly. Wilson opposed punishing Germany harshly.
Establishing Italian and French zones of influence in southern Turkey wasn't a fair punishment for the Armenian genocide. Turkey hadn't committed any crimes against Italy or France.
Wessexman

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Reply with quote  #17 
Again you lead by making exaggerated anti-British (and French) comments - here about plots and the like - and you get offended when German faults are pointed out.

There is no point proposing anything, as what you are talking about happened a century ago. I agree that the reparations in particular were excessive. Still, I deny that the Treaty of Versailles was any huge injustice to Germany. Germany was the aggressor and lost. She had engaged in several large wars in her short existence, and was rightly, at the time (which isn't to say the current situation is exactly the same), seen as likely being a menace to the peace of Europe - which view her subsequent history vindicated. A partition of Germany may have stopped that. I'm something of a fan of small states, but I am not saying that Germany should have been partitioned or should be now, but it doesn't seem an absurd suggestion in the situation.
azadi

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Originally Posted by Wessexman
Again you lead by making exaggerated anti-British (and French) comments - here about plots and the like - and you get offended when German faults are pointed out.

There is no point proposing anything, as what you are talking about happened a century ago. I agree that the reparations in particular were excessive. Still, I deny that the Treaty of Versailles was any huge injustice to Germany. Germany was the aggressor and lost. She had engaged in several large wars in her short existence, and was rightly, at the time (which isn't to say the current situation is exactly the same), seen as likely being a menace to the peace of Europe - which view her subsequent history vindicated. A partition of Germany may have stopped that. I'm something of a fan of small states, but I am not saying that Germany should have been partitioned or should be now, but it doesn't seem an absurd suggestion in the situation.

I'm not making any exaggerated anti-British and anti-French comments. I'm merely telling the truth about the negotiations for the Treaty of Versailles. I have never claimed, that the Treaty of Versailles was entirely unfair. Germany ceding Alsace-Lorraine to France, North Schleswig to Denmark and regions, where Poles formed the majority of the population, to Poland was hardly unreasonable, and neither was Germany ceding its colonies to Britain and France unreasonable. But limiting the sovereignty of Germany and Austria was unacceptable. Demilitarization of the Rhineland, limiting the size of the German army and banning Austria from joining Germany voluntarily was unacceptable, and the War Guilt Clause was an outright lie.

Wessexman

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Unacceptable to you. But that's your opinion, and it's wrong. Germany by far bears the greatest responsibility for the war, as mentioned earlier. It committed atrocities, though not on the scale of the Second World War. And for reasons given above, I think that much of the Treaty was at least vaguely reasonable. I didn't say anything about entirely unfair. I said it wasn't a huge injustice, and that's true. Germany was the aggressor, she lost, and she was a threat to the ongoing peace of Europe, as history proves, so there's little that isn't justifiable (whether it was necessary and the wisest course is another matter) in the Treaty.
azadi

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Originally Posted by Wessexman
Unacceptable to you. But that's your opinion, and it's wrong. Germany by far bears the greatest responsibility for the war, as mentioned earlier. It committed atrocities, though not on the scale of the Second World War. And for reasons given above, I think that much of the Treaty was at least vaguely reasonable. I didn't say anything about entirely unfair. I said it wasn't a huge injustice, and that's true. Germany was the aggressor, she lost, and she was a threat to the ongoing peace of Europe, as history proves, so there's little that isn't justifiable (whether it was necessary and the wisest course is another matter) in the Treaty.

I apologize for having lumped Britain together with France, because Britain opposed partition of Germany. Britain was far more reasonable than France, while being less reasonable than USA.
I would like to know, which parts of the Treaty of Versailles you consider to be fair. You're right about the territorial losses of Germany in the Treaty of Versailles being justifiable (with Eupen, Sankt Vith and Danzig as exceptions), but limiting the sovereignty of Germany and Austria is unacceptable to me.
A sovereign state is entitled to station troops in all parts of its territory, to increase the size of its army unlimitedly and to join another sovereign state.
Wessexman

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Reply with quote  #21 
As I said, basically all of it seems reasonable enough to me, except perhaps the amount of reparations. Germany was defeated aggressor and could easily be seen as a menace to the peace of Europe. Whether it was wisest settlement is another manner, especially as the provisions made to try to prevent German aggression in the future weren't likey to be enforced for any extended period (as they were not). But I don't have much time for lamenting how hard done by Germany was at the time. The Treaty of Versailles seems less severe than that Germany forced onna defeated Russia.
azadi

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Originally Posted by Wessexman
As I said, basically all of it seems reasonable enough to me, except perhaps the amount of reparations. Germany was defeated aggressor and could easily be seen as a menace to the peace of Europe. Whether it was wisest settlement is another manner, especially as the provisions made to try to prevent German aggression in the future weren't likey to be enforced for any extended period (as they were not). But I don't have much time for lamenting how hard done by Germany was at the time. The Treaty of Versailles seems less severe than that Germany forced onna defeated Russia.

The Treaty of Brest-Litovsk was indeed unfair. Germany ought to have offered Russia lenient peace terms in order to defeat France and Britain. Erich von Falkenhayn, the Chief of the General Staff of the German army from 1914 to 1916, supported offering lenient peace terms to Russia, but Paul von Hindenburg prevented Germany from offering lenient peace terms to Russia. If Germany had offered lenient peace terms to Russia, Russia might have accepted a separate peace with Germany, because Russia was decisively defeated by Germany in 1915. If Russia had accepted a separate peace with Germany in 1915 or in 1916, the Russian monarchy would have survived, and Germany could have defeated France and Britain, because USA was neutral in World War I until 1917.
Wessexman

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Reply with quote  #23 
It is unlikely Germany would have won. As Von Moltke realised, it was the failure at the Marne that sealed Germany's fate. But we would have been hard pressed. I suppose the Treaty of Brest-Litovsk has that going for it at least.
azadi

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Originally Posted by Wessexman
It is unlikely Germany would have won. As Von Moltke realised, it was the failure at the Marne that sealed Germany's fate. But we would have been hard pressed. I suppose the Treaty of Brest-Litovsk has that going for it at least.

You only won due to USA entering World War I. Otherwise we would have defeated you. Britain would have obtained lenient peace terms if Germany had won World War I, because Germany wouldn't have been able to invade Britain, but France would have been punished harshly by a victorious Germany.
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Reply with quote  #25 
We would have still have won. The last ditch German offensive, of 1918, petered out before the Americans made a real impact. It would have just been a harder slog. This is why the Central Powers collapsed so quickly. But we would have won. Already in 1917, at Passchendaele and elsewhere, the Allies had begun to turn the tide, showing they had finally got the hang of the tactics required to win in trench warfare (the Australian Monash played a role here). We won the war in the Autumn of 1914, when the German advance on Paris was stopped, even some of the more far-seeing German commanders saw this, not least Moltke.
azadi

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Originally Posted by Wessexman
We would have still have won. The last ditch German offensive, of 1918, petered out before the Americans made a real impact. It would have just been a harder slog. This is why the Central Powers collapsed so quickly. But we would have won. Already in 1917, at Passchendaele and elsewhere, the Allies had begun to turn the tide, showing they had finally got the hang of the tactics required to win in trench warfare (the Australian Monash played a role here). We won the war in the Autumn of 1914, when the German advance on Paris was stopped, even some of the more far-seeing German commanders saw this, not least Moltke.

Britain actually considered evacuating its Expeditionary Force from France in April 1918. If Britain had evacuated its Expeditionary Force from France, France would have been forced to unconditional surrender. In addition, a lot of German troops stayed in Eastern Europe in order to occupy Poland, Ukraine and the Baltic countries. If Germany hadn't occupied Ukraine and the Baltic countries, those German troops would have been deployed on the Western Front. It might have been decisive.
Wessexman

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Reply with quote  #27 
Britain wasn't going to withdraw it's forces from France short of a decisive defeat. But the point about German troops in the East has some merit. Germany could have freed up extra troops than they did for the West. It may have turned the tide, though I doubt it. The rest of the Central Powers were already on the point of collapse, and Germany was very much worn down. But, of course, Germany didn't free up the forces anyway (and the US was involved).
azadi

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Reply with quote  #28 
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Originally Posted by Wessexman
Britain wasn't going to withdraw it's forces from France short of a decisive defeat. But the point about German troops in the East has some merit. Germany could have freed up extra troops than they did for the West. It may have turned the tide, though I doubt it. The rest of the Central Powers were already on the point of collapse, and Germany was very much worn down. But, of course, Germany didn't free up the forces anyway (and the US was involved).

Haig did consider withdrawing the British Expeditionary Force from France in April 1918.
Wessexman

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Reply with quote  #29 
Haig was predicting German collapse within a year at the beginning of 1918. What you are talking about is right at the beginning of the German offensive, and part of Haig's myriad, conflicting personal thoughts on what might or should be done and his annoyance at Petain and the French. But he never seriously considered leaving France. He didn't even have the authority for that. In fact, he barely seems to have considered it unseriously, as he was determined to fight on at almost all costs. He did consider retreating to the Chanel Ports. But that it was ultimately the last throw of the dice from Germany, as he predicted. After the tide receded and the British and French were left standing, it was the end for Germany, sooner or later. The Yanks simply made it sooner rather than later.
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