OTD IN HISTORY - 18TH JANUARY 1919 - THE PEACE CONFERENCE OPENS!
We finally made it, to the point of a new beginning for the world, in the war torn locations where so many foreign faces were travelling, and upon which so much hope had been places. There was a lot riding on the Paris Peace Conference, and those present on its very first plenary session, attended by all delegates then available in Paris, and a gigantic press corps, could not hide their excitement or positivity.
It seemed as though anything was possible, with the world assembled here, to make a better peace for a better world. How could any power present deny the importance of peace? How could any power deny the importance of new institutions to safeguard the peace of the world like the League of Nations? Surely, only the wicked, the cynical, the deceitful, would dare ruin this goal of all civilised nations? Surely cooperation would be easily gained for the grandest of Woodrow Wilson's plans? Surely the world would not be let down by selfishness or fail to realise its potential?
But the pragmatists knew better. They knew better because they had seen the true extent of the problems, some impossibly complex, others straightforward but no less intractable. Even those that had attended the previous week's meetings knew that arriving at consensus was not going to be as easy as they may have initially expected. But they were here, and they were eager to forge a lasting peace. The will and the intelligence was present, and the moment of truth had arrived, to put these qualities to their ultimate test...
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