Versailles, 1919-2009: a new world order’s legacy

David A Andelman schreibt in seiner historischen Rückbetrachtung über den Versailler Vertrag:

When the Allied powers arrived in Paris at the end of 1918, barely days after the Armistice that brought an end to hostilities was signed on 11 November, they proclaimed themselves „the world’s government“ for the period they were assembled in Paris. So for the next six months, the statesmen of the victorious powers – America’s Woodrow Wilson, France’s Georges Clemenceau, Britain’s David Lloyd George, Italy’s Vittorio Orlando, even Japan’s Viscount Sutemi Chinda – proceeded to redraw the map of vast stretches of the planet. They created a host of new nations with little understanding – and barely a nod to the wishes or desires, prejudices or fears – of the people who lived within the new boundaries they were marking with blurry blue pencils, often in the wee hours of the morning. …

The real roots of many major recent and current political events – the convulsions surrounding Iran’s Islamic regime, the bloody troubles in neighbouring Iraq, the ethnic cleansing and mass murders in the Balkans, even numerous wars and uprisings from Palestine to Indochina – lie in a ceremony that occurred ninety years ago. This was the gathering in the Hall of Mirrors at Versailles, outside Paris, on 28 June 1919, when the representatives of the victors in the first world war dictated the terms of peace to the quivering representatives of Germany’s Kaiser.