World War One Officially Ends
Just under ninety-two years after it came to a halt, we can now say that World War One is officially over:
The final payment of £59.5 million, writes off the crippling debt that was the price for one world war and laid the foundations for another.
Germany was forced to pay the reparations at the Treaty of Versailles in 1919 as compensation to the war-ravaged nations of Belgium and France and to pay the Allies some of the costs of waging what was then the bloodiest conflict in history, leaving nearly ten million soldiers dead.
The initial sum agreed upon for war damages in 1919 was 226 billion Reichsmarks, a sum later reduced to 132 billion, £22 billion at the time.
The bill would have been settled much earlier had Adolf Hitler not reneged on reparations during his reign
Of course, there are those who say that it was Versailles itself and the economic ruin and resentment it helped create in Weimar Germany that led to the rise of Nazism to begin with.
Incidentally, according to Wikipedia, there are only three surviving veterans of what was once known as The Great War. including American Frank Buckles, who is America’s oldest living combat veteran at 109 years old and currently resides in Charles Town, West Virginia.