Erzberger is a biography of the man who ended World War I, but was murdered for his peace efforts.
The German politician Matthias Erzberger (1875-1921) was integral to the peace process that brought to an end World War I. He negotiated and signed the armistice in 1918, persuaded Germany to accept the Treaty of Versailles, and was a mastermind of the League of Nations.
Erzberger, a war supporter and propagandist who advocated large annexations and the merciless destruction of enemy cities at the beginning of the war, became one of the military’s most outspoken critics.
His controversial policies made Erzberger one of the most detested men of the Weimar Republic. In August 1921 he was assassinated by two former soldiers of an underground militia who avenged his efforts to end the war.
Erzberger’s life reflects the great struggles of his time: between democracy and authoritarianism, nationalism and international cooperation, and between militarism and reconciliation.
The book sheds light on one of the most fascinating, influential, and controversial politicians at the beginning of the twentieth century, and elucidates the profound impact Erzberger had on the course of history.
Erzberger’s signature under the 1918 armistice treaty