First, a “Council of Ten” (composed of two delegates from the United Kingdom, France, the United States, Italy and Japan) met formally to decide the conditions for peace. This Council has been replaced by the “Council of Five” formed by the foreign ministers of each country to discuss minor issues. French Prime Minister Georges Clemenceau, Italian Prime Minister Vittorio Emanuele Orlando, British Prime Minister David Lloyd George and US President Woodrow Wilson formed the “Big Four” (at a time when they became the “Big Three” after the temporary withdrawal of Vittorio Emanuele Orlando). The four men met in 145 closed meetings to take all the important decisions that were then ratified by the assembly as a whole. The smaller powers participated in a weekly “plenary conference” that discussed the issues in a general forum but did not make any decisions. These members formed more than 50 committees that made various recommendations, many of which were included in the final text of the treaty.   After the central powers launched Operation Punch on the Eastern Front, the new Soviet government of Russia signed the Brest-Litovsk Treaty with Germany on 3 March 1918.  This treaty ended the war between Russia and the central powers and annexed 3,400,000 km2 of territory and 62 million people.  This loss represented one third of the Russian population, a quarter of its territory, about one third of the country`s arable land, three quarters of its coal and iron, one third of its factories (54% of the country`s total industrial capacity) and a quarter of its railways.   After the Versailles conference, Democratic President Woodrow Wilson said that “the world finally knows America as the savior of the world!” [v] Meanwhile, fighting continued in many areas, when armed groups pursued nationalist, revolutionary or counter-revolutionary targets.
Russia was torn apart by a civil war that demanded more Russian broadcasting life than the world war. Vittorio Emanuele Orlando and his foreign minister, Sidney Sonnino, an Anglican of British descent, worked mainly to ensure the division of the Habsburg empire and their attitude towards Germany was not so hostile. In general, Sonnino agreed with the British position, while Orlando favoured a compromise between Clemenceau and Wilson. As part of the negotiations on the Treaty of Versailles, Orlando achieved certain results such as Italy`s permanent accession to the Security Council of the League of Nations and a promised transfer of the British Jubaland and the French band of Aozou to the Italian colonies of Somalia and Libya.