This day in the history and culture
Of Germans from Russia

March 3, 1918 in Brest-Litovsk signed a peace treaty with Germany. On the basis of Art. 21 and 22 Additions to the treaty to the Russian Germans within 10 years were allowed to emigrate to Germany with the simultaneous transfer of their capital there. The emigration took place in March-November 1918. First of all, wealthy people who feared for their future under the Bolsheviks were leaving. Emigration did not take on a large scale because of opposition from the Soviet authorities.

The Treaty

The 3 of March of 1918 , Trotsky, was representing the RSFSR , signed the peace treaty, consisting of 14 articles, in Brest-Litovsk . The Treaty can be condensed as follows:
Article 1 :
The end of the war is declared.
Article 2 :
The signatory powers will suspend the propaganda against the other side.
Article 3 :
Russia waives any claim on the territories west of the line of influence previously drawn. The future status of these territories will be determined by Germany and Austria-Hungary.
Article 4 :
Germany will continue to occupy territories east of the line of influence drawn until Russia does not demobilize its troops.
Batumi , Kars and Ardahan will be cleared of Russian troops and ceded to the Ottoman Empire.
Article 5 :
Russia must clean its waters from warships of the other allied nations.
Russia must clear the waters of the Baltic Sea and Black Sea from its mines, and indicate safe shipping routes.
Article 6 :
Russia must suspend the fight against the Ukrainian People's Republic .
Russia must vacate Estonia and Livonia , which will be occupied by German police. Russia must return all the inhabitants of these regions who were deported or arrested.
Russia must vacate Finland and the Åland Islands , including its ports. If the ice does not allow the Russian ships to leave the ports, a minimum crew must be left in them.
The Åland islands should not be fortified again.
Article 7 :
Russia must recognize that Persia and Afghanistan are free and independent states.
Article 8 :
The POWs on both sides should be released and returned to their countries of origin.
Article 9 :
Both sides renounce to demand compensation for war.
Article 10 :
The diplomatic relations between both sides are restarted.
Article 11 :
The economic relations between the sides will be defined in other appendices.
Article 12 :
Public and private legal relationships will be discussed in subsequent treaties, as will the exchange of prisoners and merchant ships held by the other side.
Article 13 :
The authority of the signed texts is defined.
Article 14 :
The Treaty must be ratified in Berlin in less than two weeks.
The Treaty was ratified on March 15. After signing the Treaty, Trotsky criticized the United Kingdom and Germany for carrying out a struggle for the division of the world, not a defensive war. He also stated:
We are leading our people out of a war in anticipation of the imminent expected hour, when the oppressed peoples of all nations will take fate into their hands, in the same way that the workers of Russia have done ... We are here to notify to the world our intention to withdraw from the war ... At the same time, we declare that the conditions proposed by the governments of Germany and the Austro-Hungarian Empire are fundamentally inconsistent with the interests of all peoples. Workers of all nations reject these conditions, including those of Germany and Austria-Hungary.

Territorial changes

The line of influence drawn in practice meant the loss of huge territories controlled by Russia for several decades, and even centuries.
  • The German Empire received the administration of Poland , the western part of Belarus , Courland and Lithuania . Germany had already been administering Courland, Poland and Lithuania since the beginning of their offensive in 1915.
  • It was stated that Latvia (Livonia), Estonia and Finland (with the Åland Islands ) would be independent. This independence would be ensured by Germany and Austria-Hungary.
  • In a second treaty signed in Berlin on August 27 of the same year, Russia was paid a severance payment of DM 6 billion at that time to Germany.
In this way, the Russian Empire lost the territory where almost a third of its pre-war population lived, a third of its cultivated land, and 75% of its industrial zones. 

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Sources: & Wikipedia