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What did Germany lose after WWI and the Treaty of Versailles?

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The greatest thing that Germany lost after World War I was its dignity as it was totally humiliated with the Treaty of Versailles whose 440 Articles demobilised and reduced the military forces of Germany, reduced its lands by 14%, and left 12.5% of the German people living outside German borders.    With this treaty, Germany also was stripped of its colonial empire in East Africa. Article 27 stripped Germany of much boundary land, which was distributed to Belgium, Luxemburg, Switzerland, Austria, Czech-Slovokia, Poland, and, of course, France who claimed coal mines in the Saar Basin as reparation for the mines destroyed in France.  In addition, Germany was forbidden to build any fortification on the Rhine.  Territories ceded in the Treaty of Frankfurt in 1871 were returned to France, as well. 

In short, Germany was made to accept full blame for World War I, being required to pay reparations for all the damages done to the allied countries with the War Guilt Clause.  This penalty left Germany globally humiliated and bankrupt.   After Germany's global humiliation, the once proud Germans were ready to accept such a leader as Adolph Hitler, who promised to make their country powerful again and regain its boundaries.

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haroon619 | Student


nanie-av | Student

The greatest thing that Germany lost after World War I was its dignity as it was totally humiliated with the Treaty of Versailles. They lost land to make new countries like Poland,and Czechoslovakia.The League of Nations took control of Germany's colonies

revolution | Student

Yes, what German have loss was their face and their dignity. When the Germans signed the armistice in 1918, they believed President Wilson's Fourteen Points would form a basis for a peace treaty that would establish a permanent peace. A key element of the Fourteen Points was the principle of self-determination, which the Germans thought that the same principle would be applied to their country, and it would remain a united nation. But, when the German delegation was presented with a draft treaty on 7 May 1919, it bores no resemblance to Wilson plan.

Under the terms of the Treaty of Versailles, segments of Germany's population would be divided by new borders and would be forced to join other nations. If it had refused to sign the treaty, the Allied Powers would have continued their naval blockade, which was depriving Germany of essential supplies of food and raw materials.

In all, Germany had to scale back its millitary forces. They were restricted to 100000 professional soldiers, ensuring Germany never again to build a large reserve force to call up in a event of war. Also, all of Germany's wartime weapons would be destroyed and conscription was prohibited. Germany was not allowed to have an air force, submarines, or tanks, and the Navy was limited to six battleships and a few smaller ships. They have territiorial losses, including Alsace-Lorraine, Eupen and Malmedy, Northern Schleswig, Polish Corridor, Part of Upper Silesa, Danzig, Hultschin, Memel, and also loss control of coal-rich region, Saar, to the French for 15 years. The Rhineland, alonmg Germany's western borders with France was made a demilitarised zone, and Allied troops were to occupy there for 15 years.

Finally, according to Article 231 of the Treaty, Germany had to agree full responsibility for the war, which is known as "war guilt cause", and it had to make reparations for the war to the Allied Powers, amounted to 6600 million euros in 1920, to make Germany poor for many years.

All these treatment by other countries angered the Germans, and some argued that the treaty should have been the result of negotiated peace and not a "diktat". Also, other countries were also responsible for the war outbreak, not only Germany. Also, their homeland have been suffering from economic crisis, so it is hard for them to make reparation for their debts, and this would struck Germany, including the citizens, as a point of execution or a death sentence.

skain | Student

During the Franco Prussian War 1870 to 1871 Frane had suffered a hummiliating defeat to Germany. Germany had taken the territories of Alsace and Lorraine which had been in French possesion for around 200 years. France swore revenge and with the Allied victory in 1918 the Treaty of Versailles gave these territories back to France

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