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Lecture 6

Lecture notes week 6


Department
History
Course Code
HISB31H3
Professor
Neville Panthaki
Lecture
6

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World War I
x America
o April 9th they declared war and the next month they started conscription
o no training occurred in the continental US until September because there were no cantonments, no barracks
o division size was too large—about 16000 to 17000 (British had 12000 to 14000 per division)
o Pershing demands cavalry, even though by now cavalry was abolished by this time
o did not have the industrial equipment and therefore started using mixed equipment from Britain and France
o Pershing also demanded independent command and that it would not be Allied co-ordinated
o the Americans also didn’t have the transport to take their soldiers to Europe, so British had to divert some of
their ships, which were in the war, to transport Americans from May – July (300 000/month)
x at this time, the powers started to drop out:
o Oct. 31: Ottoman Empire ensued for peace and dropped out
o Nov. 4: Austria-Hungary also asked for peace and dropped out
o Nov. 4: there was a revolution in Germany and the government was toppled
o Nov. 6: German Social Democrat government (the caretaker government) asked for armistice talks
o Nov. 11: the armistice was reached—not the end of the war
armistice meant ceasefire—fire would be temporarily stopped, for negotiations, but if negotiations didn’t
work out, firing would continue
The Versailles Settlement (1919)
x French demands
o French wanted to get back at Germans for 1870, the Franco-Prussian War
o their first demand was the restoration of Alsace-Lorraine, which they got
o the French also wanted to detach more territory, they wanted Ruhr and Saar, on the Rhine border
they wanted the coal, which was profitable and could help their economy
they wanted the coal, so that Germany could not make any industrial progress again
o however, the French did not get Saar, instead there was a 15-year occupation given to the French, after which
time there would be a plebiscite, where the people would be asked if they wanted to join France or Germany (the
people voted to join Germany again after 15 years)
o the French did not get Ruhr, but until the reparations were paid, the French could go into the Ruhr to get up to 40
45 tonnes of coal from that region a year—if the French extracted it or the Ruhr workers extracted it for them
o the French also wanted a security pact, which they were not given
a continuation of the Triple Entente
security from Britain, so that if they were attacked, British soldiers would have to come in and help
can take over Ruhr if they dont get the coal
o reparations, which the Germans did not pay in starting in about the 1920s
o Rhineland demilitarized, which was given to the French
the French can mobilize their army right on the border, but the Germans can’t militarize their army right
on the France-Germany border
this was so that if the Germany was to attack France, then they could see it coming
x British demands
o strong European market
prior to 1914, Germany had been the strongest trading partner of Britain in Europe
since Germany was going through their second industrialization, the British were able to be promoted
o no desire for French hegemony
the British had no desire to leave the French in charge of Europe
this was de facto because Russia was destroyed, and Germany had lost
o fear of Soviet influence
the spread of Soviet revolution westwards
they feared Russian Revolution, and so they wanted one strong power before Bolshevik revolution came
trusted Germany to be that strong power
o focus on colonies not in Europe
o basically, the British did not support the French, they wanted Germany to stay strong in Europe
x American demands
o Wilson defeated in Senate in November 1918 because he didn’t get the requisite two-thirds on the idea of the
League of Nations, which Wilson disputed
o in 1920 elections, Wilson lost and Harding won and became the new President
o Harding made it known that America would stay out of European affairs and pay attention to domestic affairs
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