Essay Plan: “The Versailles Peace Settlement failed to secure

British foreign policy interests” How far do you agree with
this view?
You need to demonstrate knowledge and understanding of:
 The terms of the Versailles Settlement (i.e., terms of the Treaty of
Versailles, war guilt, reparations, military disarmament, territorial
losses and the creation of the LoN from which Germany was banned
from joining, and also a brief knowledge of the other treaties that
dealt with the other defeated powers at the end of WW1)
 British foreign policy interests/aims/objectives for the period. (i.e., to
keep the peace and maintain stability in Europe, economic recovery in
Europe, reduced commitments in Europe, protection of the Empire and
Your introduction needs to cover these points.
Main part
There are two ways you can tackle this question.
1. Start with each “foreign policy interest” and show, in separate
paragraphs, how far each term of the Versailles settlement secured
each of the foreign policy interests.
2. Start with each term of the Versailles Settlement, and show in separate
paragraphs, how far foreign policy objectives were secured by each
term of the settlement.
Example 1:
To keep the peace and avoid war
(the main point here is that Versailles failed to fulfil the foreign policy objective of peace. Evidence of
this is the problems with Anglo-German relations in the 1920’s and the development of the policy of
appeasement in the 1930’s. )

GB hoped Versailles would lead to a new era of peace. Although peace
was established, it was an “uneasy peace”. Germany viewed the
Versailles settlement as a “diktat”. The Treaty had created a hostile
Germany that was likely, as soon as it had the chance, to take action to
disturb the fragile peace of post-war Europe. Lloyd George had expressed
privately his fears that a harsh settlement would create a vengeful
Germany, and he was, in time, proved to be correct. In 1923, the “uneasy
peace” was disturbed by Germany defaulting on her reparations
payments, which led to the French occupation of the Ruhr and “passive
resistance” by the German workforce. Although after Stresemann’s

which had created animosity between the two countries. thus demonstrating that the settlement itself failed to secure the foreign policy objective of peace. The ultimate proof of this is the fact that by September 1939 Britain was once again fighting a war that she had so desperately hoped would be “never again”.actions to solve the crisis (for example the Dawes Plan) did eventually pave the way to a peaceful. It was felt that these restrictions needed to be lifted in order to create peace. who had gained popularity in Germany partly due to his promise to “smash the treaty”. supported by some of the general public and the press. If Versailles had created a lasting peace. such as the Times. foreign policy objectives at Versailles had not been fulfilled – the treaty had placed unfair restrictions on Germany. The policy of appeasement was based on a need to avoid war and anti-Versailles sentiment. introducing conscription and remilitarising the Rhineland. . many conservative members of the government. stable Europe in the late 1920’s. Further evidence of this is provided by Chamberlains’ increasingly desperate attempts to avoid war by following the policy of appeasement when Hitler’s demands over the reversal of Versailles increased over Austria. The onset of the Depression in Germany created the circumstances which led to rise to power of Hitler. believed Hitler was simply “righting the wrongs of Versailles”. This demonstrates that as far as the British government was concerned. it did not last long. then perhaps the policy of appeasement would never have been necessary. After Hitler began to break the terms of the Versailles Settlement. by rearming. Czechoslovakia and Poland.