Sunday, March 30, 2014

In this picture, the Big 4 keep spirits up during the Paris Peace Conference in January 1919. The Big 4 were the top Allied leaders who met to discuss peace terms they would impose on Imperial Germany after World War I. From left to right: David Lloyd George (Great Britain), Vittorio Orlando (Italy), Georges Clemenceau (France), and Woodrow Wilson.

This photo was taken during the period when Wilson still dominated the peace talks.

Wilson got horribly sick on April 3 with fever and encephalitis, and may well have had a minor stroke on April 28. Although he seemed to quickly recover, he suffered some memory loss, and began to exhibit personality changes typical of a stroke (such as a quick temper and immense stubbornness). Initially, Wilson dominated the Big Four. But after his April illness, leadership of the Allied group passed to Lloyd George, who quickly gave in to Clemenceau's demands for crushing war reparations, thus setting in motion the events that would lead to World War II...

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