The treaty required Germany and its allies to accept full responsibility for causing war and pay reparations to certain countries. Germany also had further military restrictions—the air force was disabled, limited army to 100,000 men and the navy was limited to 15,000 sailors, 6 battleships, no submarines. They were also forbidden to put troops in Rhineland and France was entrusted to patrol it with troops to enforce restrictions. Germany, Austria and Hungary were excluded from the negotiations because they have been defeated. Russia was also excluded because both countries signed a separate peace treaty. (Treaty of Versailles)
The treaty evoked an angry and hostile reception in Germany from the moment its contents were made public. The German people had understood the negotiations at the Versailles to be a “peace conference” but not surrender. They didn’t feel that the reparations were fair to them. They also thought that they aren’t responsible for starting the war. The Germans were outraged and horrified—since Wilson’s fourteen pints painted a different picture. (Reaction in Germany)
The Germans economy was so weak that only small percentages of reparations were paid in money and Germany violated the treaty. March 1935, Hitler first violated the treaty by introducing compulsory military conscription in Germany and rebuilding the armed forces. March 1936, Hitler reoccupied the demilitarized zone in the Rhineland. March 1938, Hitler annexed Austria in the Anschluss. March 1939, Hitler occupied... [continues]
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