World War 1 ended with Treaty of Versailles where Allied power dictated the terms of treaty with little or no participation of Germany. The Treaty of Versailles was very harsh of Germany and many of the provisions of treaty were even not fully supported by Britain and USA. The provision of Treaty are following:
- Demilitarization of Rhineland by Germany so that it does not poses threat to neighbours in future
- Stripping away of all the German colonies
- Redrawing the boundaries of German state such as Alsac Lorraine was given back to France, Territories of Poland was given back to Poland etc
- Repatriations of war damages by Germany for indefinite period
- The Saarland was placed under League of Nations
- German Army was reduced in size and various limitation were imposed on its strength and make up.
Germany was solely held responsible for the World War 1 and all the destruction it caused. Germany did not agree with many of the harsh provisions of treaty and neither did German people as they were merely dictated to them. The reparation of war damages destroyed German economy. Even during the Great depression, payment were not reprieved and when Germans could not pay , a major coal rich region Ruhr Valley was taken over by France. However many of the provisions of treaty were renegotiated and relaxed and Germany took full benefits of those relaxations. The rise of Hitler was indirectly facilitated by many of the provisions of this treaty and therefore it is still a matter of speculation whether World War 2 could have been avoided by much lenient Treaty or much harsher treaty than treaty of Versailles.
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