In his book A World at Arms, historian Gerhard Weinberg argued that the contract was quite advantageous for Germany. The Bismarck Empire was maintained as a political entity instead of broken, and Germany largely escaped post-war military occupation (unlike the post-World War II situation). In a 1995 essay, Weinberg found that with the demise of Austria-Hungary and Russia`s withdrawal from Europe, the dominant power in Eastern Europe was now.  One of these Americans, the American ambassador to the Soviet Union William Bullitt, resigned before the treaty was concluded and allowed Paris, in his own words, „to lie on the sand and watch the world go to hell.“ The Treaty of Versaille is not the only one responsible for the hell that Europe and the world went through a few years later, but it played a decisive role. If we want to understand diplomacy, decolonization, the Second World War and the 20th century in general, there is no better place to start than with the First World War and the Treaty that tried to put an end to this situation. Discontent with the treaty has created fertile psychological ground for the subsequent rise of the NSDAP, but the German-born Australian historian J-rgen Tampke argued that it was „a treacherous distortion of history“ to argue that the terms prevented the growth of democracy in Germany and supported the growth of the NSDAP; the assertion that their conditions were not as punishable as was often the case and that German hyperinflation in the 1920s was in part a deliberate policy to minimize the cost of returns. As an example of the arguments against the verdict, he quotes Elizabeth Wiskemann, who lamented two widows of officers in Wiesbaden, that „with an exhausted linen stand, they had to wash their laundry once every 14 days (every two weeks) instead of once a month!“  On November 11, 1918, when German leaders signed the ceasefire that ended hostilities during World War I, they believed that this vision, expressed by Wilson, would form the basis of any future peace treaty. That would not be the case. European leaders signed the Treaty of the End of the First World War in the Mirror Room of the Palace of Versailles.