Encourage co-operation Peace in the World Disarmament Improve social conditions AIMS *Remember: the devastation of WW1 had horrified countries throughout the world. The League of Nations was seen as the only way to maintain the PEACE.
Many countries supported it in early days as there was a real desire for co-operation amongst nations
Had some early successes:
Settled some land disputes in 1920’s
helped refugees, dealt with spread of disease, fought for better conditions for people (This brought early confidence)
STRENGTHS We represent each one of the strengths of the League of Nations!
The American Congress (Parliament) refused to allow President Wilson to join the League of Nations. It wanted isolation from the problems of Europe. WEAKNESS: ABSENCE of powerful countries (USA and the USSR did not join the League of Nations. Without the USA – the most powerful country in the world – the League did not manage to look strong enough to influence countries.) Russia was not allowed to join because it was a Communist country. This would later leave out another powerful country.
WEAKNESS: A STRUCTURE for disaster The League of Nations had a structure where every single country had to agree in order to get something done. This meant SLOW progress. A picture of the leaders who represented the countries of the League LEAGUE OF NATIONS Remember: we all have to agree before we take any action! “ We should ban them from trading with us!” “ I think that’s too harsh!” “ Lets deal with the problem straight away!” “ Lets wait and give it more time!” “ We should do it this way.” “ No we shouldn’t. Lets do it my way!” Such arguments meant that it took long periods of time to get anything done.
(Even though it had been President Wilson’s idea. WW1 made the USA weary of getting involved in Europe’s affairs and instead isolate itself from them.)
The League did not have an ARMY!
Instead, they relied on putting economic sanctions on a country eg: stop trading
Countries had memories of WW1
WEAKNESSES I represent the League’s weaknesses. It had no real strengths and relied upon goodwill!
FLASHPOINT 1931: Japan invades Manchuria In February 1932 Japan took control of Manchuria, an area of China . They took its natural resources such as coal and iron. The League told Japan to leave but they simply ignored the threat of trading sanctions as they mainly traded with the USA (who were not members) This highlighted the problems that the League faced. They were powerless to stop Japan
FLASHPOINT 1935: Italy Invades Abyssinia 1935 In October 1935 Italy invaded Abyssinia using the modern weapons of tanks, planes and poisonous gas. Abyssinia appealed to the League as it was clear that this was an attack by the strong against the weak. The League set up trading sanctions against Italy. Countries were banned from selling military arms and other gods to Italy. Oil was not banned as the USA was the main provider. The Suez Canal, which was controlled by Britain and was the route for the majority of Italy’s trade, was kept open as Britain and France was afraid of a full scale war with Italy.
Hmmmm….very interesting! Britain and France were too afraid of war and did nothing to defend Abyssinia. What they did do was to give large areas of Abyssinia to Italy in order to persuade them to withdraw. I wonder if I could get away with such a move???