‘Victory is Essential to Sound Peace’: The Armistice Negotiations, September–November 1918
The armistice terms which Britain helped to negotiate in the autumn of 1918 represented a qualified success. At sea they safeguarded Britain's maritime supremacy, and on land they confirmed that if the German army did resume fighting, it would do so at a distinct disadvantage, and on its own soil. They ensured that decisions on the issues of reparations, freedom of the seas, and the future of enemy colonies could be postponed for what the British hoped would be a more auspicious occasion. In Africa and Asia they robbed Turkey or Germany of any hope of menacing Britain's imperial security. But what they had failed to do was to establish a new balance of power in Europe that would promote Britain's post-war interests by ensuring stability on the continent. That was something which would have to be left to the peace conference.
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