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Chapter 4

UGCC Chapter 4 notes Edited.txt

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McGill University
Political Science
POLI 244
Fernando Nunez- Mietz

UGCC Chapter 4 NOTES The Failure of Collective Security and WW2: Background: Collective Security From WW1 to WW2: World War I was the most devestating conflict ever fought in Europe up and tell that time. It cripled an entire generations of Europeans. Many uropeand had rushed to the colors in 1914 with a very romantic picture of war. That was no longer the case by the end of the War in 1918. Even the victors had been horified by the suffering and loss of life. People throughout Europe were determined to never fight another Great War. Ironically the aftermath of the War unleased pssions and dislocations that would lead to just such a cataclism. League of Nations Several efforts followed World War I to ensure that there would never be another Great War. The major effort was The League of Nations that Wilson thought would guarantee collective security. The League of Nations was the first international organization established on the basis of collective security to preserve world peace. It was created by the Versailles Peace Treaty ending World War I. The unbrideled nationalism that had inflamed Europe in the early 20th century was widely seen as a major cause of World War I. The horendous losses in the War convinced many Europeans that there must never be another war. A League of Nations was proposed by President Wilson was seen as a way of preventing war in the future through a system of collective security. It proved totaly incapeable of dealing with the challenges to peace as a result of the rise of militarism in Asia and Communism and Fascism in Europe. A major problem was that the United States did not join. Washington Naval Conference (1921-22) The major naval powers (America, Britain, France, Italy, and Japan) agreed to substantial limitations on their naval strength which at the time was measured in battleships. American Secretary of State, Charles Evans Hughes organized a conference to address the problem of spiraling naval expendidutres as a result of the naval arms race. Senator William E. Borah, Republican of Idaho, who had led the fight againstvAmerican ratification of the Treaty of Versailles and participation in the League of Nations, strongly advocated efforts to limit the arms race. His efforts were not at first favored by the new Harding administration, but was eventually adopted as the Republican alternative to the Democrat's (Wilson's) policy of collective security through the League of Nations. The Confrence opened on Armistice Day 1921--a very meaningful date so close to World War I. The American delegation was led by Secretary of State Charles Evans Hughes. Hughes shocked the other delegates by proposing a major reduction in naval fleets and not just limitations on new construction. This was far beyond what the other countries had anticipated. Some have called this one of the most dramatic moments in American diplomatic history. The American proposals entailed scrapping almost 2 million tons of warships as well as alengthy holiday on new building. The consequences of the Washington Treaties went far beyond this. Kellogg-Briand Pact (1928) The Kellogg-Briand Pact or the Pact of Paris where it was signed. The treaty renounced war "as an instrument of national policy." It was one of the best known efforts to prevent another Great War. Its idealism appealed to the temper of the times, but the treaty was one of the great failures of the inter-War era. It is name after American secretary of state, Frank B. Kellogg, and French Foreign minister Aristide Briand, who jountly drafted the pact. The pact was conceived in 1927 by Briand. His goal was a bilateral treaty with the United States. Because the United States had not joined the League, the United States was not involved in European security arrangements. Briand conceived of the danger to France of not having strong allies. The Russian Revolution meant that France no longer could look to Russia. Briand wanted a bilateral treaty with the United States. He knew that Ameica would never agree to a military alliance. So he conceived of a treaty outlawing war between the two countries. Of course war between the two countries was hardly likely, but Briand theorized that such a treaty might help secure American aid if another country attavked France. Kellogg was not at all interesed because the temper of the time was to avoid entangling alliances. Most Americans had come to think of participation in the War as a mistake. On the other hand, Briand's concept of outlawing war had appeled to the American public. Kellogg thus countered with a proposal for a multilateral treaty. Negotiations were held in Paris and an greement signed (August 27, 1928). Eleven countries (Australia, Canada, Czechoslovakia, Germany, India, the Irish Free State, Italy, New Zealand, South Africa, the United Kingdom, and the United States) signed. (France and the United States did not immediately sign. Three more countries (Poland, Belgium, and Japan) quickly signed. The United States Senate overwhelmingly approved the treaty with only one discenting vote. The Senate added a reservation that the treaty coul not infringe upon America's right of self defense and that the United States was under no oblifatio to enforce the treaty against countries which violated it. Sixty- two nations eventually signed the pact. The Kellogg-Briand Pact like the Washington Naval Conference help to allay public fears about war and probably helped to reduce military spending in America and other countries. This is one of the reasons that the democracies were so poorly prepared when World War II erupted. The Pact did not prevent war. Only a few years after signing the Pact, Japan invaded Manchuria (1931). The Pact did, however, help establish the legal bases for making the use of military force unlawful. The Nuremberg Tribunal after World War II found several NAZI defendents guilty of wageing aggresive war. Disarmament The Washington Naval Conference was the world's first true disarmament treaty. It reflected the public mood. Many in part influenced by Socialist idelogy believed that the War was caused and prlonged by arms merchants. There were even Congressional investigations on this subject that helped popularize isolationist sentiment. While disarmament never occurred, this widely head view did affect military spending. The basic concept of collective security under the League of Nations was that the international community would have the force needed to deal with aggressor nations. Disarmament or reduced military spending, however, reduced the capability od the international community to deal with the Axis aggressors. It is one reason why a crash armament program launched by the NAZIs was able to quickly estanlish Germany as the dominant military power in Europe. Pacifism There has always been a strong pacifist thread in Socialism. This is understandable s it has been workers that had to fight the intermable European wars. Also conscription laws in European countries primarily affected workers and in the less developed Eastern European countries, peasants. The experience of World War I had strengthend the pacifist thread among socilist parties, some of which entered government or were very influential in important European countries, notably Britain and France. Pacifist feeling was also strong in Germany, but other political trends affected the national ebate. In America the dominant attitude was adesire to disaociate from Europe and another war there. This affected both defense budgets and military planning. The movement to disarm affected the capability of the Democracies to deal with the Axis. The pacifist movement impaired their will ti deal with the Axis. It affected morale and attitudes in conscript armies, notably the French Army. Communism and Pacifisn Communist Parties competed for votes in the Western denocracies, primarilty with the Socialist parties. The Communists were under the control of Moscow. As a result their policies on military and defense issues gyrated during the 1930s and early 40s. Dufring the early 30s the Communists opposed defense spending. At the time Stalin considered the Western democacies possible military advesaries and thus did not want strong militaries in thjose countries. This changed with the rise of Hitler. Thus Communists supportedthe Popular Front against Fascism abd supported military spending. Then Stalin with th
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