How the New York Times carried the news of Versailles signing.

The Treaty of Versailles, signed eventually on 28 June 1919, was uncompromising. Its legacy reaped a bitter harvest. Germany lost nearly one seventh of its territory and one tenth of its population. Half the iron ore and one quarter of the coal production as well as one seventh of agricultural production were taken from her. German colonies and all foreign possessions of the Reich were lost. Most of her commercial fleet had to be handed over and long-term economic discrimination endured. But on a deeper level, Germany lost more than just her wealth and her possessions. She lost a confidence in herself which created a political vacuum; a space for opportunism to grow like a cancerous tumour.

The army and navy were considerably reduced. The Rhineland was de-militarised, split in three zones and occupied by Allied forces for five to fifteen years. The Saarland was put under the mandate of the League of Nations. The coal mines went to France. Gdansk and its surrounding area was turned into a Free City of Poland with special rights. The independence of Austria, whose National Assembly had voted to accept the connection to the German Reich, was to be guaranteed in perpetuity. The amount of reparations was to be determined at a later time. That the sum to be compiled would be very high, was beyond doubt. The murdered Kitchener must have spun in his watery grave. This was not a just peace.

Presidents Clemenceau, Wilson and Prime Minister Lloyd George pleased with their Versailles triumph.

Before the signing of the treaty, President Wilson said that if he were a German, he would not sign it. His Foreign Minister Lansing considered the conditions imposed on Germany as unutterably hard and abasing, many of which could not possibly be met. His adviser, Mandell House wrote in his diary on 29 June that the treaty was bad and should never have been concluded; its execution would bring no end of difficulties over Europe. [1] As an understatement, Houses’s prediction stands absolutely proven.The real victors would not be swayed. The final Treaty stands testament to how little real influence Woodrow Wilson wielded in Europe.

The Versailles Peace Settlement was a stepping stone in itself to future wars. Diplomat-historian George F Kenan later wrote that the peace treaty ‘had the tragedies of the future written into it as if by the devil’s own hand.’  [2] As we have pointed out, by accepting Article 231, Germany was obliged to bear the burden of guilt for causing the war. Old Empires were dismantled and choice pickings reallocated. Gone was the German Empire and Queen Victoria’s grandson, the Kaiser. The Imperial Russian Empire was no more, its Czar Nicholas II, cousin of Britain’s King George V, executed by the very Bolsheviks whom American and British bankers had financed. The Ottoman Empire, ripped apart by the victors, offered the opportunity to redraw the Middle East with the lure of oil and prime strategic locations. The British Empire survived, but at a cost. Britain had sold off at least a quarter of its dollar investments and borrowed over £1,027,000,000 from the United States. [3] Consequently, the flow of capital from America to Europe reversed the pattern which had dominated the previous century. These immense changes represented a long-term financial realignment in favour of Wall Street.

William Orpen's painting of the Signing ceremony in the Versailles Hall of Mirrors.

The conclusion to First World War was not the beginning of the end but a building block towards disasters that were to come. A new Elite intended to control the peace and exert its influence through organisations which it created specifically to determine how that would be done. During the Peace Conference in Paris, Alfred Milner’s chief acolyte, Lionel Curtis, organised a joint conference of British and American ‘experts’ on foreign affairs at the Hotel Majestic. [4] The British contingent came almost exclusively from men and women identified by Professor Carroll Quigley as members of what we have termed The Secret Elite. [5] The American ‘experts’ came from banks, universities and institutions dominated by J.P. Morgan and members of the Carnegie Trust. [6] This alliance of international financial capitalism and political thinkers and manipulators began a new phase in the life of the secret cabal as they continued their drive to establish a new world order.

Lionel Curtis, Lord Milner's trusted acolyte, liaised in Paris to help create the Anglo-American policy group which would create and extend the new world order.

They took the successful Round Table Group and remodelled it into The Institute of International Affairs. Smothered in words which when decoded meant that they would work together to determine the future direction of a fast-changing world, Lionel Curtis advocated that ‘National Policy ought to be shaped by a conception of the interests of society at large.’ [7] By that he meant the interests of the Anglo-American Establishment. He talked of the settlements which had been made in Paris as a result of public opinion in various countries, and spelled out the need to differentiate between ‘right’ and ‘wrong’ public opinion. With chilling certainty he announced that ‘Right public opinion was mainly produced by a small number of people in real contact with the facts who had thought out the issues involved.’139 He talked of the need to ‘to cultivate a public opinion in the various countries of the world’ and proposed the creation of a ‘strictly limited’ high-level think-tank comprising the like minded ‘experts’ from the British and American Delegations. A committee of selection, dominated entirely by Secret Elite agents was organised [8] to avoid ‘a great mass of incompetent members.’ What quintessentially British ruling-class thinking. A new Anglo-American Elite of approved membership was self-selected.

Thus the Institute of International Affairs, also known as Chatham House, was formally established in July 1920 and was granted a Royal charter in 1926. [9] Its first decision was to write a history of the Peace Conference. A committee to supervise these writings, in other words, ensure that the official history recorded only their version of events, was funded by a gift of £2,000 from Thomas Lamont of J.P. Morgan. Follow the money you will always trace the power behind the politicians. At the same time Institute’s sister organization, the Council on Foreign Relations (CFR), was created with J.P. Morgan money. Acting in close cooperation and funded by similar sources, the CFR and Chatham House ensured that the Britain and the United States followed similar foreign policies.

It is important to bear in mind that Curtis and his new updated organisation invited speakers to discuss and develop the ‘right’ opinion. That would have been why the first fully recorded meeting which was published in The Round Table Journal 142 in 1921 was given by D.G. Hogarth who served on the Arab Bureau during the war. He was a friend of T.E. Lawrence and Sir Mark Sykes, the men who betrayed the Arabs. Hogarth spoke on the Arab States an indication that this was one specific area for which the ‘right’ opinion had to be endorsed. [10] In 1922, Chaim Weizmann gave an address on Zionism. [11] His must have been the ‘right’ opinion too.

1. Professor Hans Fenske, A Peace to End All Peace
2. Adam Hochschild, To End All Wars: A Story of Loyalty and Rebellion, p. 357.
3. David S. Landes, The Unbound Prometheus, pp. 362-3.
4. The inaugural meeting to establish the Institute took place on 30 May 1919.
5. Gerry Docherty and Jim Macgregor, Hidden History, p.18.
6. Carroll Quigley, The Anglo-American Establishment, pp. 182-183.
7. M.L. Dockrill, The Foreign Office and the ‘Proposed Institute of International Affairs 1919’ International Affairs (Royal Institute of International Affairs 1944-), Vol. 56, No. 4 (Autumn, 1980), pp. 667.
8. Ibid., p. 666.
9. All of the senior organisers have been identified as members of the Secret Elite many times over; Lord Robert Cecil, Valentine Chirol, foreign editor of The Times, Geoffrey Dawson, G. W. Prothero etc.
10. Dockrill, The Foreign Office and the ‘Proposed Institute of International Affairs 1919’ International Affairs (Royal Institute of International Affairs 1944-), Vol. 56, No. 4 (Autumn, 1980), pp. 671.
11. Docherty and Macgregor, Hidden History, chapter 11, pp. 153-160.
12. Both Hogarth and T.E. Lawrence were largely responsible for The Bulletin, a secret magazine of Middle East politics. Lawrence edited the first number on 6 June 1916 and thereafter sent numerous reports to it, enabling readers to follow, week by week, the Arab Revolt, which ended Ottoman domination in the Arabian peninsula. The British Foreign Office described it as: ‘A remarkable intelligence journal so strictly secret in its matter that only some thirty copies of each issue were struck off… Nor might the journal be quoted from, even in secret communications.
13. Quigley, The Anglo-American Establishment, p. 185.