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Copy of The League of Nations

All you need to know about the League of Nations
by

Mary Hunter

on 9 January 2013

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Transcript of Copy of The League of Nations

AIMS STRUCTURE MEMBER NATIONS BACKGROUND SUCCESSES The League of Nations was first set up after the end of WW1 in 1920 Their task was simple:
TO ENSURE THAT WAR NEVER BROKE OUT AGAIN. After the turmoil of the Versailles Treaty the world looked to the League of Nations to bring stability America entered WW1 in 1917. President Woodrow Wilson was horrified by the terrible events of the war and wanted to avoid a repetition of such a disaster. He thought the only way to do this was to create an international body whose SOLE PURPOSE would be to maintain WORLD PEACE. After the terrible war support for this idea was great. The League was formed by four main powers: Britain, France, Italy and Japan. The USA never joined even though they were the ones who suggested it in the first place. Forty two countries joined the League when it was set up. By 1930 about 60 countries were members. Stop wars and encourage disarmament- Promote PEACE Improve living and working conditions globally Encourage nations to trade. Control diseases An assembly which met once a year A council which met more regularly to consider different crises A small secretariat to handle all the paperwork A court of international Justice A number of committees such as the International Labor Organization and the Health Committee to carry out its humanitarian work In 1920, the Council of the League had 4 permanent members; Britain, France, Italy and Japan. However, the two most powerful were Britain & France. The Assembly was the League’s Parliament. Representatives from all member countries were invited. The Assembly could recommend action to the Council and could vote on membership proposals The Secretariat had to translate many documents into multiple languages, as not every member of the League spoke English It was based at the Hague in the Netherlands. It was made up of judges from the member countries. The Court had the power to make judgments over issues such as border disputes The Permanent Court of Justice could only make a ruling if it was asked to do so by both parties in a dispute. The Council of the League had the power to arbitrate in disputes. This means that member states could bring their problems to the council for a decision to be made, rather than resort to conflict and aggression. The League established a number of new commissions to improve living conditions around the world. For example, the Slavery commission worked to abolish slavery worldwide, the Health Committee educated people about sanitation and disease prevention, and the Refugees Committee worked to return refugees to their original homes after WWI. Each nation in the council had the power of veto. This means any Council member could stop Council decisions, even if everyone else was agreed. All decisions made in the Assembly had to be unanimous (i.e agree by everyone!) The Leagues main strengths were that it was set up by the Treaty of Versailles which every nation had signed It had 58 nations as members by 1930s To enforce its will it could offer arbitration through the Court of International Justice or apply trade sanctions against countries that went to war There were also things like the Washington peace conference where Britain, France, Japan and USA agree to limit the size of their navy to try and discourage disarmament Aaland Islands 1921: These islands were near enough equal distant between Finland and Sweden. They had traditionally belonged to Finland but most of the islanders wanted to be governed by Sweden. Neither Sweden nor Finland could come to a decision as to who owned the islands and in 1921 they asked the League to adjudicate. The League’s decision was that they should remain with Finland but that no weapons should ever be kept there. Both countries accepted the decision and it remains in force to this day. The League failed to stop a bloody war in Turkey but it did respond to the humanitarian crisis caused by this war.

1,400,000 refugees had been created by this war with 80% of them being women and children. Typhoid and cholera were rampant. The League sent doctors from the Health Organisation to check the spread of disease and it spent £10 million on building farms, homes etc for the refugees. Money was also invested in seeds, wells and digging tools and by 1926, work was found for 600,000 people. The Locarno Treaty was also a great success -Germany accepted ToV borders and demilitarized Rhineland. France and Germany also agreed to settle disputes through the LoN The league also managed to improve living and working conditions greatly!
They helped return the refugees back home from the war and they also limited working hours for children, as well as many other things like helping to free the slaves. The council had permanent and non-permanent members The Secretariat acted as a Civil Service This was meant to be a key part of the leagues job in settling disputes between countries peacefully Germany joined the league in 1933 USA along with RUSSIA were never part of the league
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