The treaty of Versailles is one of the most important peace treaties in the world. It is the Treaty of Versailles which brought to an end the World War 1 which had involved Germany and the Allied powers. Although the treaty is meant to put to an end the First World War, it faces a lot of criticism as to whether it is a neutral treaty that serves the interest of all the member countries or whether it is only meant to benefit a few countries at the expense of others. Most of the terms of the treaty are debatable since they are not fair to either party with Germany suffering the most.
Most of the terms of the treaty are meant to punish Germany instead of brokering peace where all the countries including Germany feel represented and benefited. Among the terms of the treaty, I find not fair include; Germany was required to accept the responsibility that together with her allies it caused all the damages that were witnessed as a result of the war. This term is too unfair to Germany. The war started simultaneously and put all the responsibility of the war to German, and her allies alone is being too unfair to Germany and her allies. (Fischer and Sharp, 2013)
Another term of the treaty is to disarm Germany as the enemy countries become fully armed. This term put Germany at risk because it was never sure that her enemies could later turn on and attach her as revenge. Totally disarming Germany while leaving the enemy countries fully armed is too unfair to Germany. The treaty is therefore seen as a tool to fight Germany and not as a tool to bring everlasting peace. It could only be fair if all the participating countries were unarmed.
The treaty also did not give Germany an opportunity to participate in it. Germany was only expected to sign the document without even having to go through them to understand it. Germany, therefore, had no say and had no other choice but to sign to the conditions agreed upon by other countries. For the treaty to be fair Germany was also to be given equal representation in structuring the treaty just like other countries. If the treaty was purposely meant to bring peace to all the countries, then it could only be fair if all the countries are equally represented (Fischer and Sharp, 2013).
Another term of the treaty which was too unfair to Germany was that it was to surrender all her territories to other countries such as France. As if this is not enough, Germany was required to pay high amounts of reparation. This term of the treaty appeared to only target Germany since all the other countries she fought with were not required either to surrender their territories or to pay large amounts of reparation. Since the allied countries were also responsible for the damages caused as Germany did not fight alone, it could only be fair that all of them surrender their territories and equally pay for reparation just like Germany was required to do. Paying large amounts of reparation has made Germany sink into economic crises as it became highly indebted.
There is so much to worry about than to celebrate about the Versailles treaty. The treaty did not serve its purpose of bringing peace since Germany and her allies become more angered leading to the outbreak of the Second World War. The treaty failed as it tried to favor the interest of all the other countries saves for Germany. Each country in the negotiating table was motivated by her personal interest, and each wanted to gain more than others. This situation led to a compromised treaty which never purposed to meet its key objectives ( Slavicek, 2010).
The treaty was more of a revenge tool than that which championed for forgiveness. France was determined to use the treaty mainly to punish Germany. Since it shared a boundary with Germany, it wanted Germany to be fully disarmed so that France could be safe.
The Versailles treaty brought more harm than good, and if it is not renegotiated, it can breed more enmity between the Germany and the allied powers such as USA and France. Germany became bitterer which could be a recipe for another war. To ensure that a long lasting treaty is reached I would recommend that all the countries involved in the treaties were equally represented and respected. It could be better if Germany were also treated with dignity just like other countries so that no country was left complaining (Slavicek, 2010).
If disarming of the countries was to be part of the treaty them all the counties whether central or allied were to be disarmed. It is quite unfair to disarm Germany and leave her enemies fully armed as this exposed Germany to a lot of risks as her security was compromised. The treaty, therefore, raised more concern than the short-lived celebrations it brought.
Fischer, C, & Sharp, A. (2013). After the Versailles Treaty: Enforcement, Compliance, Contested Identities. Hoboken: Taylor and Francis.
Slavicek, L. C (2010). The treaty of Versailles. New York: Chelsea House Publishers.
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