Revolution in Germany

The German government worries that the country might be about to have a revolution. They ask for an armistice with the Allies.

By October 1918 the Royal Navy blockade had left the German people close to starvation. Their armies were suffering defeat after defeat on the Western Front.

At the German port of Kiel, sailors discovered that the German high command was planning to send them out on a final suicide mission against the Royal Navy. They mutinied - refused to obey orders - and took over Kiel. Their actions sparked uprisings right across Germany.

The government was worried that Germany might have a revolution, like the one in Russia in 1917. So they quickly asked the Allies for an armistice.

On 9th November the Kaiser abdicated and the next day he fled the country. Germany became a republic - ruled by a government with no monarchy - and the largest political party, the Social Democratic Party, took over running the country. However the country was still in chaos with left and right-wing groups causing unrest.

Karl Liebnecht speaks to a crowd in Berlin. He was a leader of the Spartacist League - a left wing political group that wanted Germany to end the war.