IMPACT OF THE TERMS OF THE TREATY OF VERSAILLES ON GERMANY - Coggle Diagram
IMPACT OF THE TERMS OF THE TREATY OF VERSAILLES ON GERMANY
Germany lost all oversea possessions as well as European territories it previously owned.
Germany became and outcast in international politics and were excluded from the league of nations.
The war led to the Kaiser being forced into abdication. This left a power vacuum that was filled first by an Interim Government and then by the Weimar Republic.
The food shortages across Germany led to a radicalisation of peoples views. As a result extremist views, such as communism, became widely supported, particularly in the industrial cities.
The territory and population was reduced to 10% of what it originally was.
Harsh conditions created by the treaty led to the rise of Fascism.
The government was forced to make use of a body called the Freikorps. This group was made up of disillusioned soldiers, who were right wing in their beliefs. Some historians argue that the methods employed by the government at this early stage of its existence, led partially to the governments fall 14 years later.
Germany was forced to pay reparations to repair the damages the war caused. The total cost of reparations was 132 billion marks, a total just recently paid off in 2010.
Germany lost vital industrial territory as a result of the treaty, making any attempt at recovery nearly impossible.
Trade was severely limited because Germany could not import or export industrial or military good.
The cost during the war was bordering on $40 Billion
Industrial output fell by over 40% between 1914 and 1918. Machinery was, at the end of the war, obsolete in many cases, run by ill trained people
The workforce was not physically fit enough to work as hard as required as food shortages had been so bad
Estimates suggest that up to 35% of all trade was organised illegally on the Black market. The economy also suffered from shortages of raw materials.
From 1915 until the end of the war, Germans were forbidden to drive a car. The situation hardy improved as a result of the Armistice, the Germans hadn’t the means to purchase fuel on a large scale and found it difficult to purchase raw materials in any case as the international community shunned them as a consequence of the war.
During the war the percentage of women in the workforce had risen to 37%, a massive rise. At the end of the war this figure did not fall dramatically, meaning that from now on women had a significant role to play in the German economy.
Many of the former soldiers were of the opinion that they had not lost the war, they believed that the army had been cheated. (Hitler later phrased this as ‘The Stab in the back’).
As a consequence of this many Germans looked for people to blame. Some lay the blame in the hands of the Kaiser. Others, many others, looked to the new Government.
They had immediately sued for peace and accepted the terms of the Armistice. For many Germans this showed that they were largely to blame. Other theories that were popular amongst the former soldiers were that it was the result of Communists or Jews
So in the immediate Post War era, there is a mass of suspicion within Germany. Combined with these factors is the potential threat to the social order. Under the Kaiser the armed forces and aristocratic Prussian elite had enjoyed many privileges. These groups now had to try and reestablish their authority.
The first President of the Weimar republic, Ebert, worked hard to try and win the support of the elite groups. he wanted their support in order to maximise the stability of the new republic.
Likewise he had to work hard to gain the support of the army, who in return needed his support if they were to survive as a significant political power in the years following the peace settlement.