All three representatives had different aims towards the defeated countries, however they were forced to make compromises, therefore leaving the meeting unsatisfied. The final Treaty of Versailles included a constitution of the League of Nations which contained 14 points, thus again calling for compromise between three conflicting countries. In the end, there were many conflicting ideas about the results of the Treaty of Versailles in the eyes of Wilson, Clemenceau, and Lloyd George.
Woodrow Wilson of the United States contributed the ’14 Points’, through which Wilson calls for open diplomacy, freedom of the seas, removal of trade barriers and reduction of armaments in support of his central attempt to address the world’s problems. The points ultimately led to the League of Nations, which Wilson had a major part in forming; during the signing of the treaty. Article 10 in the treaty called on the US to support the League of Nations, which received national opposition due to what was viewed as a large amount of unnecessary American casualties during the war.
Ultimately, America was dissatisfied with the outcome of the treaty, therefore the US Senate never ratified it. This, of course, meant that they had never joined the League of Nations, partly because they wanted to limit their involvement in future European wars. Although America probably tempered the treaty, preventing Clemenceau from being overly harsh on Germany, the nation as a whole was unsatisfied, while Wilson defended it to the end.
In France, George Clemenceau was satisfied to a point with the treaty. He accepted Article 231, the disarmament clauses of the Treaty, getting back Alsace-Lorraine, and being given Germany colonies as mandates on behalf of the League of Nations. However, he was unhappy that France got the Saar coalfields for only 15 years, and he was angry that the Rhineland was merely demilitarized. France had wanted the Rhineland made into a powerless independent country, and Germany split up. Also, Clemenceau wanted reparations so high that Germany would be crippled, however the reparations committee determined an amount later, which did initially anger Clemenceau.
Britain received some of the German colonies, which was one of their aims. Overall, after the treaty they considered it fairly acceptable and were contented for a while. Germany’s military force was weakened, meaning less threat to the empire. However, eventually it was thought the treaty was too harsh on Germany, and also it didn’t deal with Germany’s eastern borders, which Lloyd-George considered a possible trouble spot in the future.
Even in Britain the opinion was split on the treaty. Winston Churchill believed that the treaty was the best settlement that could have been reached and “‘the wishes of the various populations prevailed'”. However, Harold Nicholson, a British delegate at Versailles, called the treaties “neither just nor wise”. So even in between the powers in Britain, there was some disagreement. Germany’s economy was not in any way protected, in fact it was ripped apart by reparations and debt, eventually crashing into hyperinflation. This was something Lloyd-George tried to avoid and it negatively affected the rest of Europe.
It is clear that not one of the three nations were completely satisfied with the Treaty of Versailles, however this doesn’t mean that none of their aims were achieved. The resulting treaty satisfied Clemenceau in some ways, but he didn’t receive everything he wanted. Germany did, in fact, have to pay huge sums to the nations, however it was never harsh enough for France.
Lloyd-George liked the reduction of the German navy, for it ensured that ‘Britannia ruled the waves’. However, he was suspicious about the annexation of the League of Nations, and opposed self-determination, thinking it would cause problems in the future. His predictions of another war were accurate. Wilson agreed with the self-determination and a League of Nations, but felt let down because few of his fourteen points were included. They all benefited in the way of certain compensations and new land, however tensions still remained high all over Europe. It’s safe to say that the treaty did not meet the requirements of a peace agreement, rather it was a compromise barely satisfying all parties involved.