() was the name for the illegal paramilitary formations
created by the Germans during the Weimar Republic
, raised despite restrictions imposed by the Versailles Treaty
Restrictions on German Military Forces after World War I
The Versailles treaty restricted the numbers of the German army to seven divisions of infantry and three of cavalry, for a total of 100,000 men, and no more than 4,000 officers; conscription was prohibited, and civilian employees engaged in forest protection, customs inspection and other official duties could not receive military training. The military was to be exclusively devoted to the maintenance of order within German territory and control of the frontiers. The Treaty further prohibited the construction of aircraft, heavy artillery, submarines, capital ships, and tanks, and the production of material for chemical warfare.
Naval forces were limited to 15,000 men; furthermore, the Treaty specified that the navy could number no more than six battle ships of no more than 10,000 tons displacement, six cruisers (6,000 tons displacement), six destroyers (800 tons displacement), and 12 torpedo boats (200 tons displacement., and that these ships could only be replaced after twenty years for the first two classes of ships, and after fifteen years, for the remaining classes of ships. Article 191 specifically prohibited the production or acquisition of... Read More