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by the United States of America or of any of its officers, agents, or employees, from any source or by any agency whatsoever, and all property of the Imperial and Royal Austro-Hungarian Government, or its successor or successors, and of all Austro-Hungarian nationals which was on December 7, 1917, in or has since that date come into the possession or under control of, or has been the subject of a demand by the United States of America or any of its officers, agents, or employees, from any source or by any agency whatsoever, shall be retained by the United States of America and no disposition thereof made, except as shall have been heretofore or specifically hereafter shall be provided by law until such time as the Imperial German Government and the Imperial and Royal Austro-Hungarian Government, or their successor or successors, shall have respectively made suitable provision for the satisfaction of all claims against said Governments respectively, of all persons, wheresoever domiciled, who owe permanent allegiance to the United States of America and who have suffered, through the acts of the Imperial German Government, or its agents, or the Imperial and Royal Austro-Hungarian Government, or its agents, since July 31, 1914, loss, damage, or injury to their persons or property, directly or indirectly, whether through the ownership of shares of stock in German, AustroHungarian, American, or other corporations, or in consequence of hostilities or of any operations of war, or otherwise, and also shall have granted to persons owing permanent allegiance to the United States of America most-favored-nation treatment, whether the same be national or otherwise, in all matters affecting residence, business, profession, trade, navigation, commerce and industrial property rights, and until the Imperial German Government and the Imperial and Royal Austro-Hungarian Government, or their successor or successors, shall have respectively confirmed to the United States of America all fines, forfeitures, penalties, and seizures imposed or made by the United States of America during the war, whether in respect to the property of the Imperial German Government or German nationals or the Imperial and Royal Austro-Hungarian Government or AustroHungarian nationals, and shall have waived any and all pecuniary claims against the United States of America."
Being desirous of restoring the friendly relations existing between the two Nations prior to the outbreak of war:
Have for that purpose appointed their plenipotentiaries:
THE PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA
ELLIS LORING DRESEL, Commissioner of the United States of America to Germany,
THE PRESIDENT OF THE GERMAN EMPIRE
Who, having communicated their full powers, found to be in good and due form, have agreed as follows:
Germany undertakes to accord to the United States, and the United States shall have and enjoy, all the rights, privileges, indemnities, reparations or advantages specified in the aforesaid Joint Resolution of the Congress of the United States of July 2, 1921, including all the rights and advantages stipulated for the benefit of the United States in the Treaty of Versailles which the United States shall fully enjoy notwithstanding the fact that such Treaty has not been ratified by the United States.
With a view to defining more particularly the obligations of Germany under the foregoing Article with respect to certain provisions in the Treaty of Versailles, it is understood and agreed between the High Contracting Parties:
(1) That the rights and advantages stipulated in that Treaty for the benefit of the United States, which it is intended the United States shall have and enjoy, are those defined in Section 1, of Part IV, and Parts V, VI, VIII, IX, X, XI, XII, XIV, and XV.
The United States in availing itself of the rights and advantages stipulated in the provisions of that Treaty mentioned in this paragraph will do so in a manner consistent with the rights accorded to Germany under such provisions.
(2) That the United States shall not be bound by the provisions of Part I of that Treaty, nor by any provisions of that Treaty including those mentioned in Paragraph (1) of this Article, which relate to the Covenant of the League of Nations, nor shall the United States be bound by any action taken by the League of Nations, or by the Council or by the Assembly thereof, unless the United States shall expressly give its assent to such action.
(3) That the United States assumes no obligations under or with respect to the provisions of Part II, Part III, Sections 2 to 8 inclusive of Part IV, and Part XIII of that Treaty.
(4) That, while the United States is privileged to participate in the Reparation Commission, according to the terms of Part VIII of that Treaty, and in any other Commission established under the Treaty or under any agreement supplemental thereto, the United States is not bound to participate in any such commission unless it shall elect to do so.
(5) That the periods of time to which reference is made in Article 440 of the Treaty of Versailles shall run, with respect to any act or election on the part of the United States, from the date of the coming into force of the present Treaty.
The present Treaty shall be ratified in accordance with the constitutional forms of the High Contracting Parties and shall take effect immediately on the exchange of ratifications which shall take place as soon as possible at Berlin.
IN WITNESS WHEREOF, the respective plenipotentiaries have signed this Treaty and have hereunto affixed their seals.
Done in duplicate in Berlin this twenty-fifth day of August 1921. [SEAL] ELLIS LORING DRESEL
Unlike other treaties of the United States, the treaty restoring friendly relations between the United States and Germany was published in three editions with differing content.
The first edition was issued in November 1921 as a 9-page pamphlet, the treaty being embodied in the proclamation of the President of November 14, 1921.
It was reissued with the addition of the instrument of ratification, dated October 21, 1921, reciting the understandings of the Senate in giving its advice and consent. This 10-page edition is reproduced in 42 Stat. 1939.
In September 1922 Treaty Series 658 was reissued, containing the treaty in that second form in a pamphlet running to 121 pages. The additional material consisted of those parts of the treaty of peace with Germany listed in article II (1) "which stipulated the rights and advantages which it is intended the United States shall have and enjoy". The part of the treaty of peace with Germany listed in article II (2),
by the provisions of which "the United States shall not be bound", and those parts listed in article II (3) under which "the United States assumes no obligations", were not annexed. This edition is
The treaty of peace between the United States and Austria, signed at Vienna August 24, 1921 and in force November 8, 1921, was published in 9 pages as Treaty Series 659 as embodied in the proclamation of November 17, 1921. It was republished as a treaty establishing friendly relations in the current 113-page edition of Treaty Series 659, with the instrument of ratification of October 21, 1921 and parts V, VI, VIII, IX, X, XI, XII, and XIV of the Treaty of SaintGermain-en-Laye concluded September 10, 1920. The reproduction in 42 Stat. 1946 includes the proclamation and instrument of ratification. The proclamation of this treaty recites that the war existing between the United States and the Imperial and Royal Austro-Hungarian Government since December 7, 1917 terminated on July 2, 1921. The treaty establishing friendly relations between the United States and Hungary, signed at Budapest August 29, 1921 and in force December 17, 1921, was published in 5 pages as Treaty Series 660 as embodied in the proclamation of December 20, 1921 and with the instrument of ratification dated October 21, 1921. The proclamation made no reference to termination of the state of war declared against the Austro-Hungarian Government on December 7, 1917. In this form it was reproduced in 42 Stat. 1951. The second and current edition of Treaty Series 660 runs to 118 pages and contains parts V, VI, VIII, IX, X, XI, XII, and XIV of the Treaty of Trianon concluded June 4, 1920.
Germany and the Treaty of Peace
The German Government executed its obligations under the treaty at the outset as it found execution necessary or advisable. Much of the machinery of treaty execution became stabilized, and continuing operations took on an appearance of smoothness, which was enhanced by a tendency to introduce negotiating techniques in the relations involved. Moreover, many provisions of the treaty were either executed or given a new form by subsequent action. During the ascendancy of Gustav Stresemann as Chancellor (1924-29) a "policy of fulfilment" was proclaimed, which was not entirely abandoned until the accession of the National Socialists to power in 1933.
The form of the negotiations at Paris was not to the liking of the Germans. They received "Conditions of Peace" worked out by the victors and after being summoned to receive them handed in proposals
for amendment, which were accepted or rejected in the preparation of the final text by the Allied and Associated Powers. In the note of June 23, 1919 the German peace delegation wrote: "Yielding to superior force, and without renouncing in the meantime its own view of the unheard-of injustice of the peace conditions, the Government of the German Republic declares that it is ready to accept and sign the peace conditions imposed". From that attitude, which was taken up by some sections of the German public, arose the idea of a "dictated peace", for years sedulously fostered by the National Socialists. Their policy was stated by the Foreign Minister in a speech at Danzig on October 24, 1939, in which he said (file 740.0011 European War 1939/1042):
“Since January 30, 1933 the aim of Germany's foreign policy has been to abolish the Treaty of Versailles and its consequences. . . . As a matter of fact, in recent years the Führer has done nothing but remedy the most serious consequences which this most unreasonable of all dictates in history imposed upon a nation and, in fact, upon the whole of Europe, in other words, repair the worst mistakes committed by none other than the statesmen of the western democracies."
A semi-official publication of the National Socialist German Government, Das Diktat von Versailles, compiled by Fritz Berber and published in 1939, specifies those parts of the treaty of peace which, according to Nazi Germany, had been abrogated by negotiation or "legal means of another sort" as follows:
Part III, sec. III, demilitarization of the left bank of the Rhine, by the memorandum of the German Government of March 7, 1936; Part III, sec. VI, relation with Austria, by the German law of March 13, 1938;
Part V, disarmament of Germany, by the law concerning the Wehrmacht, March 16, 1935;
Part VII, war crimes, "by the Lersner note" (file 763.72119/892) of February 3, 1920;
Part VIII, art. 231, "the war-guilt lie", by the declaration of Adolf Hitler of January 30, 1937;
Part VIII, reparation, by the unratified convention of Lausanne, July 2, 1932;
Part X, economic provisions, by numerous liquidation conventions and restitution laws;
Part XII, sec. II, waterways, by the note of November 15, 1936;