Part 11 of a Series on Islamic Doctrines
At the end of November 1918, a Peace Conference in Paris began and continued well into 1919. The main ambition of Prime Minister Georges Clemenceau of France was increased territory and a heavy burden of reparations on Germany to pay for the war. Clemenceau had strong opinions and was so fluent in both French and English that he could simultaneously converse in both languages.
Prime Minister Vittorio Emanuelle Orlando of Italy wanted colonial territory and parts of Turkey, including Smyrna. President Woodrow Wilson of the United States came late into the negotiations. He came with noble altruism and hopes for future peace, but he was not well prepared in his grasp of the concerns and competing ambitions of the other Entente Powers. The silver-haired British Prime Minister, David Lloyd George, had the magnetic eloquence and courage, for which the Welsh are famous, and possessed the knowledge and temperament for the hard task of bending competing national interests to a reasoned consensus, if any man could do so. British ambitions were focused on oil, particularly the oil lands of southern Iraq.
Unfortunately, the highly desirable Smyrna area had been promised to both Italy and Greece at various times during the war.
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