They say time is a great teacher. How true. History has taught us that peace must be kept at all costs. The tragic story of the League of Nations centers around the man who conceived it and offered it to the world. The man who developed its charter and who died from exhaustion after his own country, the United States, refused to ratify it in the senate . On November eleventh, 1918 an armistice was declared in Europe. The President of the United States, Woodrow Wilson, saw this as an opportunity to form an international organization of peace. The league was brought forth to provide security against future wars. However, the league did not fulfill the hopes of it's founders, it did not enforce the Versailles treaty, and did not protest injustices. The League took no steps to protect Ethiopia from the advancing Italians until it was too late. They did nothing to stop the German troops from rearming, even though the Versailles treaty was meant to keep Germany from rearming. Another example of the League of Nations failure is when they failed to act against the Japanese advance into Manchuria. At a time of such military aggression throughout Europe and Asia, the League had a chance to limit the activity of potentially harmful nations. With the United States not helping, the League of Nations not acting, the world was left vulnerable for another war and the eventual demise of the League of Nations.
The League of Nations had officially been set in motion on January 10, 1920. However, the idea of an international peace keeping organization was brought forth far before this. For it was the President of the United States of America, Woodrow Wilson, who delivered his famous Fourteen Poi...
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...tion, whereupon much of its property and organization were transferred to the United Nations, which had recently been founded. The League achieved some success in ending armed conflicts between small nations. But when a powerful nation was involved, the League seemed to be ineffective. Why the League failed was most dramatically illustrated when Italy attacked Ethiopia. The League did impose some small economic sanctions on Italy, but without the United States, Germany, and Japan these sanctions were worthless. Never truly effective as a peacekeeping organization, the lasting importance of the League of Nations lies in the fact that it provided the groundwork for the United Nations. This international alliance, formed after World War Two, not only profited by the mistakes of the League but also borrowed much of the organizational mechanics of the League of Nations.
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