The League of Nations - Lenaghan

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					   The L of N was set up
    because Wilson wanted
    it more than anything
    else.
   He wanted the League
    to be a ‘world
    parliament’ where
    nations could sort out
    arguments.
   He wanted to make the
    world a better place.
   Stop wars.

   Improve people’s
    lives.

   Disarmament.

   Enforce the Treaty of
    Versailles.
   The United States did
    not join the League.
   The cartoon suggests
    that the Senate rejected
    the Treaty because it
    had been left out of
    negotiations.
   Americans did not want
    to get dragged into
    other countries’
    problems.
   Forty-two countries
    joined the League at
    the start.

   In the 1930’s about 60
    countries were
    member.

   This made the League
    appear strong.
   The most powerful
    countries in the world
    were not members.
   The USA did not want to
    join.
   The Russians refused to
    join they were
    Communists!!
   Germany was not
    allowed to join.
   This weakened the
    League.
   Britain and France
    were the main
    members.

   Italy and Japan were
    also members.

   These were the most
    powerful countries.
   Covenant – all members
    had promised to keep
    the peace (Article X)
   Condemnation – the
    League could tell a
    country it was doing
    wrong.
   Arbitration – the
    League could offer to
    decide between two
    countries.
   Sanctions – stopping
    trade
   The League could use
    its four powers to make
    countries do as it
    wanted.
   Theoretically, the
    league was allowed to
    use military force.
   The League did not
    have an army of its
    own.
   If a country ignored it,
    there was nothing the
    League could do.
   The absence of the US
    was catastrophic.
   The US was the
    wealthiest nation in the
    world and had the
    greatest potential to
    intervene in the interest
    of maintaining peace.
   The absence of the USA
    meant that challenges to
    the status quo
    established at Versailles,
    would meet limited
    resistance.
   The concept of
    collective security
    depended on
    collective action.
   The absence of the
    three great powers
    limited the
    effectiveness of the
    League’s reaction in a
    crisis.
   The Treaty of Rapallo
    demonstrated how the
    League had no recourse.
   It also illustrated that
    the disarmament clause
    of the T of V was dead
    in the water.
   Germany developed
    weapons which could
    not be seen by League
    inspectors, they also
    trained large numbers
    of personnel.
   The disarmament
    conference in
    Washington.
    (organized by the US!)
   The Locarno Treaty
    between France and
    Germany which
    promised lasting
    peace. (Germany was
    not a member of the
    League!)
   The absence of the
    defeated countries
    meant that the League
    was a league of
    victors enforcing the T
    of V.
   Another serious
    problem was the fact
    that a number of
    important countries
    dropped out between
    1919 and 1939.
   The different parts of
    the League were
    supposed to work
    together.

   In a crisis no-one
    could agree.
   Assembly – the main
    meeting of the League
    met once a year.
   Its main problem was
    that decisions had to be
    unanimous, which was
    very difficult to achieve.
   Council – a small group
    of the more important
    nations – Britain,
    France, Italy and Japan
    plus some other
    countries met 4-5 times
    a year.
   Agencies (committees of
    the League):
   Court of International
    Justice – for small disputes
   Health (to improve world
    health)
   International Labor
    Organization (to try to get
    fair wages)
   Slavery (to end slavery)
   Refugees
   Secretariat – was
    supposed to organize the
    League but failed
   This was the                 C.S. is a more abstract
    cornerstone of the L of       concept.
    N.                           It does not specify
   Article X – all nations       where threats come
    would protect the             from.
    other members                It assumes that all
    against aggression.           nations will see each
   No more alliance              challenge in the same
    systems or to defend          light.
    one’s own self-
    interest.
   Not all nations see         It failed because it
    every crisis in the          asked nations to give
    same way.                    up their freedom of
   It failed as a concept       action.
    because it ignored          It also asked nations
    reality.                     to enforce policies
   It required a level of       they disagreed with.
    altruism that humans        Or intervene against
    had not yet been             countries they were
    capable of.                  friends with.
   The league could not be
    considered very
    collective if three of the
    largest nations were not
    members of the League.
   The UK and France
    could not agree on their
    treatment of Germany.
   It was likely they would
    not agree on any major
    issues.
   Collective Security
   Moral Persuasion
   Community of Power
   The cartoon is from
    1936 and it is entitled
    “Moral Persuasion”
   What was it saying
    about the League?
   The weakness of              It would have called on
    collective security was       nations to support the
    demonstrated by the           victims of aggression as
    fact that it was              determined by the
    necessary to reinforce        League.
    the obligation of the        The same thing
    league members to             happened with the
    resist aggression.            Geneva Protocol for the
   Draft treaty of Mutual        Pacific settlement of
    Assistance in 1923 –          International Disputes.
    supported by France          This would have
    but rejected by the UK        enforced compulsory
    and its dominions.            arbitration in all
                                  disputes.
   Few members of the          There was widespread
    League were willing to       opposition to using
    take on the open-ended       military force to resolve
    commitments that             other countries
    collective security          disputes.
    entailed.                   Especially if the
   The main reason being        aggressor was a large
    self-interest.               country.
   Also after WW1 the          This was true of the
    prospect of armed            Corfu dispute in 1923.
    intervention would not      This was led by
    gain support from the        Mussolini and members
    population of any            of the League took no
    nation.                      action.
   An Italian general was       It told Greece to give
    killed while he was           some money to the
    doing some work for           League.
    the League in Greece.        Mussolini refused.
   Mussolini was angry          The League changed its
    with the Greeks and           decision told Greece to
    invaded Corfu.                apologize and pay
   The Greeks asked the          money to Italy.
    League to help.              The Greeks did as the
   The Council met and           League said and then
    told Mussolini to leave       Mussolini gave Corfu
    Corfu.                        back to Greece.
   It was a concept that      However, if there was
    attracted great             to be collective
    popular support but         security then the
    nothing of a concrete       collective has to
    nature.                     agree.
   It was an illusion in      The world in the
    which desperate             1920’s and 30’s was
    populations wanted          far from agreement on
    to believe.                 many fronts.
   In the early years of         Success: The Aaland
    the league it was              Islands, Upper Silesia
    called on to intervene         and the Greco-
    in a number of                 Bulgarian War of
    disputes.                      1925.
   Its record of success is      Failures: The Seizure
    mixed. It allows us to         of Fiume, Vilna, the
    understand the                 Russo-Polish War, the
    strengths and                  Corfu incident and
    weaknesses of the              the Ruhr invasion.
    League and collective
    security.
   Greek soldiers were           It condemned the
    killed in a fight on the       Greeks and told them
    border between                 to leave Bulgaria.
    Greece and Bulgaria.          The Bulgarian govt
   The Greeks were                sent orders for their
    angry.                         soldiers not to fight
   Bulgaria asked the             back.
    League to help.               The Greeks did as the
   The Council of the             League said and left
    League met.                    Bulgaria.
   Greece and Bulgaria are
    fighting like Tweedle-
    dum and Tweedle –dee.
   The League, like the
    dove of peace stops the
    fight.
   ‘Just then came down a
    monstrous dove whose
    force was purely moral,
   Which tuned the heroes
    hearts to love and made
    them drop their quarrel.
   The antagonists were
    small or medium
    powers.
   These powers were
    usually unwilling to
    resort to violence.
   This allowed the
    League to negotiate
    and enforce a
    settlement which both
    parties would accept.
   The dispute involved a            Italy was a major power
    major power that refused           and when she resorted to
    to submit to the League.           violence the league could
   Countries decided to               do nothing.
    resort to violence and not        This was the case when a
    seek peaceful solutions.           major power pursued a
   The Corfu incident was a           policy in contravention of
    major indicator of the             the League.
    problems the league faced.        Peacekeeping would only
   Greece complained that             prevail in the disputes of
    there seemed to be one set         smaller countries
    of rules for small countries       provided that the stronger
    and a different set of rules       members could agree on a
    for big countries.                 course of action.
   In the absence of the US      In the dispute between
    it was vital that the          Turkey and Greece
    remaining powers were          1920-23, GB and France
    in agreement on major          took opposite sides.
    issues.                       France supported
   This was not the case.         Poland in Russia and
   The British govts of the       Silesia, GB did not.
    1920’s did not really         GB also had major
    support European               problems in Ireland and
    settlements.                   the Empire so it did not
                                   focus on upholding the
                                   interests of the League.
   The Dutch did not          Poland did not accept
    give up the Kaiser.         her frontiers.
   Germany did not            Italian troops did not
    surrender war               evacuate Fiume.
    criminals.                 Turkey did not accept
   She did not disarm or       the Treaty of Sevres.
    meet reparations           Nothing much
    quotas.                     happened.
   Austria could not and      The will to enforce the
    did not pay                 treaties was lacking or
    reparations.                at best divided.

				
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