Shaping the Post-War Order


The First Great War was thus far the deadliest global conflict in human history, taking life of nearly 10 million soldiers. Millions of civilians have died, millions of people were crippled for life, lost families and homes. Property, infrastructure and industry losses were catastrophic, especially in France, Belgium, Poland, and Serbia, where fighting had been heaviest. In the course of war, the armament firms – Krupp, Schneider, Vickers, and Armstrong, Noble Trust and many others, made incredible profits. Between 1914 and 1918 British firm Vickers, which was closely associated with the Rothschilds, and which used Krupp patents in much of its weapons development, sold millions of fuzes to the British government; an estimated 14,139,000 fuzes of just type no. 80 for which they were paid by the British government £10,764,000.203 In a single 1914, the overall profits of Vickers were £1,019,000.204 Furthermore, Vickers whose payments of royalties to Krupp had been suspended during the war under the Trading with the Enemy Act, still included the royalties in the shell prices charged to the British government.205 Plenty of other companies like Du Ponts, Bethlehem Steel or United States Steel and others, made money on government contracts in various industrial fields. The companies in the Allied camp had further enriched themselves by seizing patents and products of German companies and German subsidiaries outside Germany. Finally, the biggest winners were the international banking elites, the Rothschilds, the Warburgs, the Rockefellers and the Morgans, who lent money to belligerent states and made them increasingly dependent on foreign loans. But still there was much more at stake: the re-drawing of the map of Europe and the partitioning of the Ottoman Empire.

The peace negotiations regarding new post-war order began with the opening of the international peace conference on January 18, 1919. This was the anniversary of the proclamation of Wilhelm I as German Emperor in 1871, at the Palace of Versailles, and such a date was chosen deliberately to humiliate Germany. Although nearly thirty nations participated in the meetings, the Conference was dominated by the representatives of the elites of the City of London and Washington D.C. The London delegation was almost exclusively from Milner's Group and Cecil Bloc. Prime Minister Lloyd George was accompanied by Philip Sassoon, as proxy for the Rothschilds. French Prime Minister Georges Clemenceau was accompanied by his right hand man, a Jewish journalist and politician, Georges Mandel (born Louis Georges Rothschild). The American delegation consisted of some members of 'The Inquiry', including President Wilson's top aide, Colonel Edward House; head of American Geographical Society, Isaiah Bowman, and an imperialist George Louis Beer, who became chief of the Colonial Division. There were also people associated with J.P. Morgan including his lawyer, Foster Dulles of international law firm Sullivan and Cromwell. Finally, the Conference was attended by a group of 117 prominent Jews and Zionists including president of World Zionist Organisation and friend of the Rothschilds, Chaim Weizmann; vice-president of Federal Reserve Paul Warburg; chairman of War Industries Board, Bernard Baruch; professor of law from the Harvard University, Felix Frankfurter; and Justice of the U.S. Supreme Court, Louis Brandeis.

The overriding purpose of the Milner's Group was to bankrupt Germany and ensure it would not threaten Britain's imperial power. Germany was thus forced: to accept responsibility for war and pay reparations (which in 1921 would amount to 132 billion gold marks); to reduce its troops to 100,000 and not to have tanks, air-force or submarines; to demilitarise Rhineland (including industrial territory of Ruhr); to make substantial territorial concessions loosing all colonies, returning Alsace and Lorraine to France and Posen and West Prussia to Poland and to accept plebiscites in Schleswig, in vital industrial territories rich in coal, Saar and Upper Silesia. The boundaries between Germany and Poland have been one of the most contentious issues of the Versailles Conference. The Polish representatives, Roman Dmowski and Ignacy Paderewski, demanded Poland's new boundaries to be set by reference to the Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth prior to its partition in 1772, including some lands in the east that were inhabited by other ethnic minorities, Ukrainians, Belarussians and Lithuanians. They argued that Poland needed those lands in order to counter Russian threat. Yet throughout the Conference, British Prime Minster Lloyd George, who acted under influence of the Rothschilds and the Zionist lobby, was defending the interests of Germany, arguing against Polish ambitions. The disputed regions concerned germanised territories of Gdańsk, Silesia, Warmia, Masuria and Powiśle. Gdańsk was a Polish city, but with the arrival of the Teutonic Knights, it was steadily germanised and eventually annexed by Prussia in the second partition of the Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth in 1793. Silesia formed part of the old kingdom of Poland but came under the rule of the Bohemian Crown and from 1526 was under the rule of the Habsburg monarchy. It was annexed in 1742 by the Prussia. The area of Warmia was annexed by Prussia in the first partition of Poland in 1772, whilst the region of Masuria was ruled by the German Hohenzollern family since the Prussian tribute in 1525. Many inhabitants of that region had Polish roots and were ethnically classified as Poles or Masurians. British Prime Minister Lloyd George demanded that Gdańsk be a Free City under protection of the new organisation - League of Nations - and that plebiscites be carried out in Silesia, Warmia, Masuria and Powiśle. The British and American delegation also prefered that Poland should stay within its ethnic boundaries, that is without the borderlands in the east (“Kresy”). The Zionists additionally demanded a guarantee of equal rights for all the Jews in Poland in the economic, religious and political sphere, calculating that Jews, who constituted 14% of the entire Polish population, would take leading roles in political and economic life. A member of the Anglo-Jewish delegation Lucien Wolf spoke about the population transfers with Israel Zangwill, proposing to sweep the Arabs out of Palestine, also asking him “why not ask the Poles to trek off the Russia where there is plenty of room for them and leave Jews in possession of the land?”206 Maurice de Rothschild expressed his negative views about Poland's aspirations in his conversation with the Polish diplomat Count Orłowski. By making reference to the demands posed by the Polish statesman, Roman Dmowski, he said as follows: “But there is one point on which indeed the entire nation of Israel shows solidarity namely when it comes to the honour of Israel. If at the Congress, the official representative of the Republic of Poland will be "a former member of the Russian State Duma from the city of Warsaw", who gained worldwide publicity as a fierce anti-Semite, all Israel and Mr. Rothschild will themselves regard such nomination as a slap in the face of their entire nation and they will act accordingly. (...) Let him know in advance and warn the right people that when Poland is officially represented by this Mr...., Israel will sabotage all its aims, and these aims are known to us. You will find us on the way to Gdańsk, on the way to Prussian Silesia and to Cieszyn, on the way to Lviv, on the way to Vilnius and on the way to all your projects. Please, be aware and act accordingly."207

Because no agreement was reached on the Polish boundaries to the east, a compromise was reached only on the Polish-German boundaries. By then the Posnanians under leadership of General Józef Dowbor-Muśnicki took control of most of the Province of Posen (Poznań), wrestling Polish towns and villages from disorganised German forces. Thus at Versailles, Province of Posen, the cradle of the Polish state, as well as West Prussia (part of Pomerania), were allocated to Poland. By giving Poland access to the Baltic Sea, the ‘corridor’ was created effectively separating East Prussia from the rest of Germany, reverting to the status prior to the Commonwealth's partitioning. In the south, fierce battle erupted between the Poles and the Ukrainians over the Polish city of Lwów, which had cultural and civilization heritage rooted in Polish influences dating back to the 14th century. The Ukrainians wanted to see Lwów within the new Ukrainian republic as an intellectual center of the young state, but Polish teenagers took up arms and after numerous battles secured Lwów for the nascent Polish state. In the coal-rich Silesia, the plebiscite would take place in March, 1920 that would neither satisfy Germans nor Poles. The result would be the three Silesian Uprisings which would end in 1921 with Poland obtaining less than a third of the geographic territory, but it was generally considered to be 'the good part.' Poland would receive 50 coal mines out of 61, 22 furnaces out of 37, 12 zinc and lead mines out of 16 and all the iron mines. In the plebistes in Warmia, Masuria and Powiśle, that would take place in July 1920, the Germans would engage in terror attacks and aggressive propaganda to force the inhabitants of those regions to vote in favour of Germany. Poland's eastern borders would eventually be decided in favour of Polish independent state in the Polish-Bolshevik war of 1920 and by annexation of Vilnius by Polish General Lucjan Żeligowski. Thus, Polish Republic would be reborn chiefly by the efforts of the Polish nation, and much to the dismay of the Rothschilds and their cronies.

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203 “Vickers and Krupp: a Debacle Over The Royalty Payments”, »

204 Ibid. »

205 Ibid. »

206 Paul Latawski, The Reconstruction of Poland, 1914-23, p. 34 »

207 Stanisław Michalkiewicz, “Przyczynek i wnioski”, (testimony provided by Polish writer and political commentator, Hipolit Milewski) »