After WWI Germany was forced to abide by the Treaty of Versailles. In the treaty Article 160 says:

By a date which must not be later than March 31st 1920, the German Army must not comprise more than seven divisions of infantry and three divisions of cavalry. After that date the total number of effectives in the Army of the States constituting Germany must not exceed 100,000 men, including officers and establishments of depots. The Army shall be devoted exclusively to the maintenance of order within the territory and to the control of the frontiers.

How long did the allies intend to prevent Germany from rebuilding their military past this point? Did they intend this treaty to last indefinitely or did they just expect Germany to break the treaty in the far future?

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    Those clauses were indefinite, as was most of the the treaty. Some others, including the occupation of parts of Germany, were time limited
    – Henry
    Apr 24, 2017 at 23:22
  • The final reparations payment was made in 2010. Apr 25, 2017 at 11:24
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    @MattBalent: That is a very much abbreviated, and somewhat misleading statement. What you are referring to are payments for the interest accrued between 1945 and 1952, which had been suspended until the reunification of Germany (which happened in 1990).
    – DevSolar
    Apr 25, 2017 at 12:11
  • @DevSolar You can look it up on wikipedia: search "World War I reparations" Apr 25, 2017 at 14:32
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    @MattBalent: That's where I got the information in my comment, yes. The paying of WW1 reparations was a rather patchy and debated thing, and it pays to pay attention to the details. The payment of actual reparations ended in 1932 (Lausanne Conference).
    – DevSolar
    Apr 25, 2017 at 14:40

1 Answer 1


WW1 was billed as "the war to end all wars". The mood at the end was that this would indeed be a watershed event after which wars will become a thing of the past and the world will enjoy a peaceful and equitable future.

The Treaty of Versailles was supposed to be the permanent foundation for this future.


This was, of course, wishful thinking, repeated by FDR's dream of "4 policemen" during WW2 and GHWBush's "New World Order" at the end of Cold War.

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