Treaty of Brest-Litovsk
The Treaty of Brest-Litovsk was a peace treaty signed on March 3, 1918, between the new Bolshevik government of Soviet Russia and the Central Powers (Germany, Austria-Hungary, Bulgaria, and Turkey), that ended Russia's participation in World War I. The treaty was signed at Brest-Litovsk (Polish: Brześć Litewski; since 1945 Brest, Belarus), after two months of negotiations. The treaty was forced on the Bolshevik government by the threat of further advances by German and Austrian forces. According to the treaty, Soviet Russia defaulted on all of Imperial Russia's commitments to the Triple Entente alliance.In the treaty, Bolshevik Russia ceded the Baltic States to Germany, and its province of Kars Oblast in the south Caucasus to the Ottoman Empire. It also recognized the independence of Ukraine. Russia also agreed to pay six billion German gold mark in reparations. Historian Spencer Tucker says, ""The German General Staff had formulated extraordinarily harsh terms that shocked even the German negotiator."" Congress Poland was not mentioned in the treaty, as Germans refused to recognize the existence of any Polish representatives, which in turn led to Polish protests. When Germans later complained that the Treaty of Versailles of 1919 was too harsh on them, the Allies (and historians favorable to the Allies) responded that it was more benign than Brest-Litovsk.Under the treaty, the Baltic states were meant to become German vassal states under German princelings.The treaty was effectively terminated in November 1918, when Germany surrendered to the Allies. However, it did provide some relief to the Bolsheviks, already fighting the Russian Civil War, by renouncing Russia's claims on Poland, Finland, Estonia, Latvia, Belarus, Ukraine and Lithuania.