1919 Versailles. The End of the War to End All Wars by Charles L. Mee Jr.

By Charles L. Mee Jr.

World battle I and the Versailles Treaty that produced the main severe upheaval in an extended and stormy process glossy international historical past. 4 nice empires - Germany, Austria-Hungary, Turkey, and Russia - have been a part of the war's rubble. faraway from restoring the area to reserve, the diplomats who met in 1919 at Paris and Versailles plunged the area back, this time irretrievably, into the chaos of the 20th century. It used to be the top of order.

At 3 o'clock at the afternoon of may perhaps 7, 1919, the top of the German delegation to the Paris Peace convention entered a room within the Palace of Versailles and was once "dazzled and disoriented by means of the surprising explosion of solar mirrored within the great mirrors, the chandeliers and white walls." Brockdorf-Rantzau used to be additional bewildered by means of the treaty that used to be awarded to him - "a mass of go references and altered paragraphs" overlaying 2 hundred revealed pages and a hundred and forty articles. but not anyone had studied the rfile - no longer the barrel-chested, shrewd...

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The Germans produced their own dreadnoughts. And then the French, to challenge the supremacy of the German army on land, commenced to build up their army. War is a great unifier of nations, a great organizer of disorder: if a politician is fortunate enough to find an external enemy, he need only direct the anger of his constituents toward the external enemy, and discipline his country against the outsider. For Germany, whose heavily industrialized economy was mortally threatened by rapidly rising prices of imported agricultural goods, an external enemy was a godsend.

In 1917, some felt that there was a possibility for a negotiated peace; and it has been argued since that a negotiated peace might have staved off the collapse of some of the old regimes of Europe, sidetracked the rise of totalitarianism, and possibly saved millions of lives. But Clemenceau would have none of this defeatist talk. ” All the French refer to their country in the feminine gender; but few have written with as much passion as Clemenceau about their love for France. “From the sea to the mountains,” he said, the French countryside “transpierces” a Frenchman “with an intense spirit of dedication, a passion which embraces all the attributes of a soil now prodigal, now niggardly, all the lively dreams cradled by the hearthside, all the hopes of heaven which, even if deceptive, have none the less guided the soul on its march toward the stars, a march in which the journey, perhaps, is better than the goal.

Perhaps his closest and most enduring friendship was with Claude Monet, whose impressionist paintings of water lilies Clemenceau especially loved. Clemenceau enjoyed visiting Monet, sitting with Monet in the painter’s garden, urging him on when the painter began to go blind toward the end of his life. “Monet was a supreme lyricist,” Clemenceau said in a book he wrote about his friend’s paintings of water lilies, “and this lyricist was a man of action. ” Monet was born, said Clemenceau, “palette in hand, and conceived living merely as standing before a canvas upon which to inscribe the flux of luminous energy through which the protean universe settles itself by means of its own reflection into a semblance of fixity.

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