Imposing an indemnity on the defeated enemy after a war was a longstanding practice. At the Paris Peace Conference, reparations were supposed to be something more just and civilized: a charge for losses to civilians during the German occupation of Belgium and France.
The new democratic German government believed they could get a generous peace deal from the Allies. They were wrong.
After the abdication/removal of Kaiser Wilhelm II, Germany was declared a republic. But what kind of republic?
With the bloodshed seemingly unending, the Lloyd George government and the Irish Republic strike an agreement.
The conflict in Ireland grows more bitter, culminating in 1920's Bloody Sunday.
On January 21, 1919, the first Dáil Éireann met in Dublin and declared itself the parliament of an Irish Republic. That same day, IRA fighters in County Tipperary stole 168 pounds of gelignite, killing the two police officers who were guarding it.
As Woodrow Wilson recovered from his stroke, the effort to gain Senate approval for the Treaty of Versailles floundered, and the US government was without a leader.
As hard as it was to negotiate the Treaty of Versailles, Woodrow Wilson returned home to an even greater challenge: winning Senate approval of the treaty.
At the same time as the "Red Scare," the USA was experiencing the worst racial violence in its history. Hundreds were killed. Some claimed, without evidence, that the Bolsheviks were behind it.
Labor unrest, racial violence, and anarchist bombs were blowing up across the USA in 1919, making many people wonder if the Bolsheviks were behind it all.