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Flashcards in The League of Nations Deck (19)
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What were the parts of the League?

The secretariat, the assembly, the council of the league, international labour organisation, the permanent court of justice and the special commissions, which were the Mandate Commission, the Refugees Committee, the Slavery and the Health Commission.


What were the four aims of the League?

To discourage aggression from any nation (International Relations and Politics)
To encourage countries to co-operate, especially in business and trade (Economics/Financial)
To encourage nations to disarm (Military)
To improve the living and working conditions of people in all parts of the world (Social/Welfare)


What was the secretariat?

The permanent 'civil service' of the League. It carried out decisions made by the Council.
It joined up different parts of the League
It sorted out admin for the League
The printed out copies of what happened in the meetings


What was the assembly?

The met once a year. All member nations of the League had one vote here.
There were too many people in the assembly for it to be effective
All decisions made by the assembly had to be unanimous
It wasn't very powerful


What was the Council of the League?

A committee that took major decisions. Most major nations were nations.


Why did the USA never join the League?

Wilson's opposition saw the introduction of the league as the ideal way to overthrow his party and his successor was a Republican, who campaigned for America to be isolationist and return to normalcy.
The public was also opposed to joining. The league was linked to the TOV and the Americans hated the TOV->German immigrants. They also thought that the league would be controlled by Britain and France-> Americans believed in freedom. Thought that it would be too expensive to join


France in the LON



Britain in the LON



Italy in the LON



Japan in the LON



Germany in the LON



USSR in the LON



USA in the LON

Never joined


The Aaland Islands

1921 Sweden and Finland had a disagreement about who owned two islands in the Baltic Sea, and both nations seemed ready to fight over them, but they invited the league to reach a judgement on the dispute. The league gave the islands to Finland, and Sweden accepted their proposal.
It was a success, but only because Sweden accepted their decision.


Economic collapse in Austria and Hungary

1922-23 Austria and Hungary faced bankruptcy because their economies had not recovered after the was and they now had to pay reparations. The league arranged international loans for the two countries and it sent commissioners to supervise how this money was spent.
It was a success



1923 five Italian people were shot and killed in Greece. Mussolini demanded compensation from the Greek government. When this wasn't given to him, he invaded Corfu. This was an outrageous violation of the principles of the league, and the council wanted to condemn Italy, but the great powers wouldn't allow it because Italy was a permanent member. Instead, the league put pressure on Greece to accept Italy's demands.
Failure because the league backed down in the face of a string power


The Greek-Bulgarian Dispute

1925 the border between Greece and Bulgaria was a source of tension between the two nations. After a number of violent incidents, Greece invaded Bulgaria and the league pressurised Greece to withdraw, and they did.
Success but when there is a bigger issue, the league backs down


Upper Silesia

1921 upper Silesia contained large numbers of poles and Germans and it was important for its industry, so both Germany and Poland wanted the territory. In March 1921, the people voted in favour of Germany by 700,000 votes to 480,000. The league decided to share the area. Germany received over half of the land and population, while the poles had most of the industry. Germany was bitter at this decision.
A bit of a messy compromise because whatever the league did would have upset someone. They did the best that they could in a tricky situation.



1920 vilna was included in the new state of Lithuania, but it was claimed by both Lithuania and Poland. It had a majority polish population. During the Russo-polish war, vilna was occupied by polish forces, and they refused to leave, however the league refused to leave. Doing something about Poland would have required an army, and the league didn't have one. Britain and France also saw Poland as a strong barrier against Germany and Russia. The league tried to negotiate a deal, but in 1923 in confirmed poland's occupation of vilna.
Weak and useless