What the Versailles Treaty Teaches us about Gun Control

What the Versailles Treaty Teaches us about Gun Control
What the Versailles Treaty Teaches us about Gun Control

U.S.A. –-(Ammoland.com)- This weekend marked the one-hundredth anniversary of the end of the First World War—if we don’t count the Napoleonic Wars as a global conflict, of course. It was supposed to be the war to end all wars, and though it was called the Great War, it turned out to be only the first act of what would be a much greater horror to come. The lessons are many. One that I wish to draw here is what the Versailles Treaty can teach advocates of gun control.

The treaty is reminiscent of today’s advocates to restrict gun rights in several ways. It singled out Germany as responsible for the war, despite there having been multiple participants whose military and diplomatic policies made the conflict inevitable and a terrorist attack by a Serbian nationalist that put everything in motion. But in the same way that gun owners are blamed for violence in our nation, Germany was declared to be the villain and beaten down financially and militarily.

It was legislation passed by the Weimar Republic to satisfy the demands of the Versailles Treaty that disarmed the German people, not the Nazis. That was in keeping with the broader goal to make Germany unable to start a war again. Citizens had to surrender their guns, and the nation’s military was cut down to numbers and equipment that would have been inadequate for defense had France, for example, decided to invade. Submarines and military aircraft were also prohibited.

Unsurprisingly, none of this worked. Paramilitary groups such as the Freikorps and other right-wing precursors to the Nazi Sturmabteilung fought the communists, and both sides killed people who weren’t involved, and the politically motivated violence primed the nation for the rise of an authoritarian leader who promised peace.

As readers of this magazine will know, disarming civilians who refuse to comply is a fool’s errand. But the Allies missed—willfully or otherwise—the more difficult to hide efforts of the German government to maintain skills and technical advancement in the weapons of war, particularly in the development during the intervening decades of submarines and airplanes. The Germans bought interests in maritime design companies in the Netherlands and Spain, developing vessels for several nations, including Turkey and future enemy, Soviet Russia as a cover for thinking through the U-boats that Churchill would later say was the only thing that really frightened him during the Second World War. Willy Messerschmitt and others not only worked with aircraft manufacturers of other countries but also understood that racing planes made the basis of fighters and passenger craft had much in common with bombers, an example of a dual-use technology that has become of such concern today.

In other words, vindictiveness and enforced disarmament failed. It failed because demonizing an entire group of people when the responsibility is much more complex creates resentments that fester. It failed because people who are determined to be armed will find a way. And it failed because it neglected to address the factors that motivated the second round of conflict in Europe. Advocates of gun control would do well to learn this lesson.


About Greg CampGreg Camp

Greg Camp has taught English composition and literature since 1998 and is the author of six books, including a western, The Willing Spirit, and Each One, Teach One, with Ranjit Singh on gun politics in America. His books can be found on Amazon. He tweets @gregcampnc.

31
Leave a Reply

Please Login to comment
17 Comment threads
13 Thread replies
0 Followers
 
Most reacted comment
Hottest comment thread
17 Comment authors
Robert LucasRonEvil CloneHans BangBangTionico Recent comment authors
  Subscribe  
Notify of
Ron
Guest
Ron

Author: Hans BangBang
Comment:
“It was legislation passed by the Weimar Republic to satisfy the demands of the Versailles Treaty that disarmed the German people, not the Nazis.”

Correct. Lots’a guy’s brought back a lot of souvenirs that went bang bang.(non military)

Hans BangBang
Guest
Hans BangBang

“It was legislation passed by the Weimar Republic to satisfy the demands of the Versailles Treaty that disarmed the German people, not the Nazis.”

THANK YOU!
Many far-right idiots on the internet have spread this false claim, that the Nazi-Party took away guns from their citizens.
That a complete lie; their gun related laws did quite the opposite, from how I understood it.

Thank you for not spreading this dumb lie any further! It’s niice to see someone clarifiying history.
Cheers mates!

Robert Lucas
Guest
Robert Lucas

At Hans, Bang, Bang; To quote one author’s article… How the Nazis Used Gun Control By STEPHEN P. HALBROOK • December 2, 2013 9:00 AM • • • • • The Weimar Republic’s well-intentioned gun registry became a tool for evil. The perennial gun-control debate in America did not begin here. The same arguments for and against were made in the 1920s in the chaos of Germany’s Weimar Republic, which opted for gun registration. Law-abiding persons complied with the law, but the Communists and Nazis committing acts of political violence did not. In 1931, Weimar authorities discovered plans for a… Read more »

Ron
Guest
Ron

Author: Tionico Comment: and it was CHurchill’s govenrment suckered Hitler into turning to invade Russia that brought him back into a two front war….. that was an ingenious plot hatched and run by England’s govenrment at the time, and it worked. Hitler’s forces were all but demolished during one of the harshest Russian winters on record. But, in the time between DUnkirk and the Eastern Front failure, Hitler’s forces brutally and ruthlessly a=pummelled England by air, the so-called “Battle of Britain” where the English nearly were crushed. Churchill’s guys tricked Hitler’s guys into thinking England were ready to have in… Read more »

Ron
Guest
Ron

Who runs the banks? Who controls the media by which wars are sold to the public as a necessity? If your answers are anything other than the the international Judaic power construct, you are kidding yourselves.

Spot on Nick!!!

Allan Morrison
Guest
Allan Morrison

Please, enough of your cold dead hands. Please plan on prying the guns from their dead hands with your warm hands. We do need some positivity in this conversation.

Patriot guy
Guest
Patriot guy

Now we have the new Hitler youth in Florida yelling ban all guns! And the news media listens to them. Its been reported that some of these characters are paid actors! And they pay teens to wear t shirts and carry signs. Just wait until they are married, in their late 20’s got a wife and kids and ask them what they would like to protect their fsmily with… A gun.. or a hankie! Don’t you just love it having a bunch of 14 or 15 year olds telling adults what they can own and do. Hell they cant even… Read more »

David
Guest
David

The NAZI’s were socialists, not right-wingers! They hated the communists as much as the communists hated them. Both groups strived for complete domination of the nation’s economy and people. As evil as Hitler was, Stalin and the communists were just as brutal with their own people. Research the various and sundry “pogroms” and other methods Stalin used to murder at least 30 million of his own people, especially in the Ukraine. Stalin killed more Soviet citizens than Hitler did! And they were both socialists, racists, homophobes, anti-Semites and just generally defined evil in the twentieth, or any other, century. Remember,… Read more »

Marauder
Guest
Marauder

Gun control isn’t about guns, it’s about control. Do not be deceived by the rambling bullscat from the socialist leftards in DC and elsewhere.

Ron
Guest
Ron

Tionico, Churchill was a drunken bum. Naked and drunk in the White House too. Thanks to him,in part,Britannia no longer rules the waves. His lust for war reduced England to a insignificant Nation after WW2.
Dunkirk…the Germans let them escape thanks to Hitler. He foolishly thought the gesture might bring peace.

minute-man
Guest
minute-man

what the hell have you been smoking friend?

alex
Guest
alex

he’s right about Dunkirk,hitler wanted peace with the English,he didn’t want a two front war.

Tionico
Guest
Tionico

and it was CHurchill’s govenrment suckered Hitler into turning to invade Russia that brought him back into a two front war….. that was an ingenious plot hatched and run by England’s govenrment at the time, and it worked. Hitler’s forces were all but demolished during one of the harshest Russian winters on record. But, in the time between DUnkirk and the Eastern Front failure, Hitler’s forces brutally and ruthlessly a=pummelled England by air, the so-called “Battle of Britain” where the English nearly were crushed. Churchill’s guys tricked Hitler’s guys into thinking England were ready to have in the towell and… Read more »

Robert Thomas
Guest
Robert Thomas

Absolutely ridiculous. Read a goddamned history boo

Brandon White, VA
Guest
Brandon White, VA

We have to stand together and stop it in it’s tracks we are going to do one of two things give up our rights or fight for them our government won’t to control us and getting our gun is the first step so we have know why to fight back we are at some point going to have to stand together and say no if you want our guns and our rights to quote the NRA you will have to pry them from my cold dead hands the government will put so many restrictions on our guns to make it… Read more »

Wild Bill
Guest
Wild Bill

@BW, Va, That was Charlton Heston that said that. We do have to make a fight of it. Trump arrived just in time. Who would have ever envisioned a land developer with the manners of a NY cabbie would lead a revolution against the elitist, globalist establishment.

Tionico
Guest
Tionico

Years ago I was quite involved in the recreational sailplane world. One of our folks owned a VERY interesting aircraft.. I had opportunity to chat him up at one of our competitioin meets on the California coast. His plane was quite different in design, shape, construction, then all the others. Turns out it was built in Germany, his in 1936. The story was that the then-arming up quietly and stealthily German government called for the design and construction of a fleet of these craft. they were a two place tandem flight trainer, constructed almost entirely of.. WOOD. VERY agile and… Read more »

Tionico
Guest
Tionico

Having read CHurchill’s series on that Second German War, I always found his first one in the series “The Gathering Storm” to be the most fascinating.. AND dusturbing. As early as 1920 he was aware of signs that Germany was indeed working toward rearmament. He tried to warn, presenting hard documentatioin of various advances, projects, etc, but no one wanted to remove their swelled heads from the comfortable, dark, warm sand. Having presented aerial photographs w=of what was almost certainly (turns out it WAS true….) a submarine constructioin project and base, Parliament declined to take even those seriously. Aircraft development… Read more »

joefoam
Guest
joefoam

And then the English, after being led to victory by him, voted him out of office.

Candace Dainty
Guest
Candace Dainty

Don’t forget the Lend-Lease policy. Brittain had no defensive weapons but the US loaned them enough until we actually wound up in the war.

Patriot guy
Guest
Patriot guy

Gun control=people control = concentration death camps!

Pete
Guest
Pete

The Treaty of Versailles guaranteed WW2. I’m sure international diplomatic forces are working to come up with somethig to guarantee WW3. Envy, distrust, and hatred– of countries, peoples, elected officials, etc.– have always been great motivators. Ask Israel.

Heed the Call-up
Guest
Heed the Call-up

Pete, I assume you mean because Israel was founded by refugees from Europe and Russia, as well as other parts of the world, and besieged on all sides? Then there was the open threat from the Iranian leader to destroy them and push them into the sea.

joefoam
Guest
joefoam

The Nazis rebuilt and re armed themselves right under the noses of the entire world. Goes to show that gun control doesn’t work on entire nations, much less individuals.

Evil Clone
Guest
Evil Clone

Well, to be fair, if you rule a totalitarian country, it’s a lot easier to get guns than if you were just some individual, since you access factories and such. Lol

This reminds me of how North Korea always promises to get rid of its nukes.

Robert J. Lucas
Guest
Robert J. Lucas

Gun Control=Disarmament=Extermination…

Ron
Guest
Ron

Some very good points. The ‘Versailles Treaty’ was a disgrace and a sham. It was about par with the disgusting ‘Nuremberg Trials’. Which was another sham. What the victors impose on a people can sometimes come back and bite them. Plus there are a lot of weapons in the good old US of A floating around.