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- Joined: 30 Sep 2002 12:45
- Location: Sydney
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- Joined: 16 Sep 2002 12:00
- Location: Germany
Benedict XV., trying to stay neutral, had an extremly difficult standing. In a highly polarized world, he became an outsider and his fairness was even despised. Clemenceau called him "le pape boche" (the pig [German] Pope) and Ludendorff named him "den französischen Papst" (the French Pope)…
In 1917 the situation was modestly in facor to the Central powers. Of course, the inner state of Austria-Hungary, and the Ottoman Empire was critical and the Allied sea blockade was dealing a great amount of damage to the economy of the Central Powers. Nevertheless: All Entente offensives on the Western Front had failed, Italy had suffered a serious defeat and it would take much time until the U.S. could effectively intervene in the European theatres. On the other hand Russia was about to collapse and this gave the Central Powers the prospect of committing large numbers of troops to other fronts.
In early 1918 Germany held for the first time a numerically superiority on the Western Front since Autumn 1914. From March 1918 on the German army conducted a serious of major offensives on the Western Front to bring about a decision. It was not until the ultimate faliure of these offensives (summer 1918) that Germany’s military situation became hopeless.
In conclusion: there was no real chance for a fair peace in 1917 as both sides were convinced they'd ultimatively prevail.