Woodrow Wilson had devised the 14 Point Plan that he believed would bring stability to Europe:
Open Diplomacy - There should be no secret treaties between powers.
Freedom of Navigation - Seas should be free in both peace and war.
Free Trade - The barriers to trade between countries such as custom duties should be
Multilateral Disarmament - All countries should reduce their armed forces to the
lowest possible levels.
Colonies - People in European colonies should have a say in their future.
Russia - Russia should be allowed to operate whatever government it wanted and that
government should be accepted, supported and welcomed.
Belgium - Belgium should be evacuated & restored to the situation before the war.
France - Restore Alsace-Lorraine and any lands taken away during the war.
Italy - The Italian border should be readjusted according to nationality.
National Self -Determination - The national groups in Europe should, wherever
possible, be given their independence.
Romania, Montenegro and Serbia - Should be evacuated and Serbia should have an
outlet to the sea.
Turkey - The people of Turkey should have a say in their future.
Poland - Poland should become an independent state with an outlet to the sea.
League of Nations - An assembly of all nations should be formed to protect world
peace in the future.
Germany expected a treaty based on these fourteen points. However, negotiations between the “Big Four”: Lloyd
George of England, Orlando of Italy, Clemenceau of France and Woodrow Wilson of America, did not go smoothly.
Wilson believed that his fourteen points was the only way to secure everlasting peace. The French, however, wanted
the defeated nations to be punished severely and believed Wilson's plan was too lenient. Privately, Lloyd George
sided with Wilson although he was concerned about the threat from Communism; however, the British public, like
Clemenceau, wanted Germany punished severely. Lloyd George knew that if he sided with Wilson he would lose
the next election.
Treaty of Versailles: There were a total of 440 clauses in the final treaty. The first 26 clauses dealt with the
establishment of the League of Nations. The remaining 414 clauses spelled out Germany's punishment.
General Clauses: The establishment of the League of Nations
War Guilt clause (Article 231)- Germany to accept blame for starting the war.
Financial Clauses: Reparations - Germany was to pay for the damage caused by the war. The figure of £6,600
million ($33 billion in gold) was set some time after the signing of the treaty.
Military Clauses: Army - Reduced to 100,000 men and no tanks were allowed.
Navy - Germany was only allowed 6 ships and no submarines.
Airforce - Germany was not allowed an airforce.
Rhineland - The Rhineland area was to be kept free of German military personnel and weapons.
Territorial Clauses : Anschluss - Germany was not allowed to unite with Austria.
Land - Germany lost land to a number of other countries. Alsace-Lorraine was returned...