International relations (1919-1939)


The Big Three


  • wanted revenge 
  • make Germany pay for the damage
  • waken Germany so France wouldn't be invaded again

Woodrow Wilson

  • fair peace
  • 'Fourteen points' wanted Legue of Nations and disarmament
  • Self determination- nations having the right to rule themselves

Lloyd George

  • wanted justice not not revenge
  • halfway point between Clemeanceau and Wilson
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Treaty of Versailles

28th June 1919, Treaty of Versailles was signed by Germany. Government was refoerd to as 'November Criminals'

Land- had to give all colonies and lost 70,000 kilometer of land to the allies

Army- were allowd only 100,000 in the army, no airfoce and 6 battleships

Money- £6.6 million to pay in reparations

Blame- had to take full responsibilty for the war

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Other Treaties

These were all countries which were defeated and they are dealt with by: paying reparations, self determination, lose of land or diarmament:

Treaty of St Germain and Trianon- Austria-Hungarain spilt. Los of territory to new counties like Poland and Yogoslavia 

Treaty of Neuilly- loss of terrotory (Bulgaria)

Treaty of Sevres- loss of Ottoman empire (Turkey)

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Strengths and weaknesses


  • well suported- 45 countries signed 
  • League of nations was created
  • self-determination led to independent states
  • reparations were responsible 


  • satisified nobody
  • anger in Germany
  • 6 million Germans living outside of Germany
  • USA never joined the League of Nations or signed the treaty
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League of nations

Strengths- 58 members in 1930s. Could apply trade sanctions aginst countries that went to war. Arbitration (both groups talk to a thrid party) through court of International Justice.

Weaknesses- aims to ambitious. Decisions had to be unknown. No army

Aims of the League:

D- disarmament

I- improve work and lives

E- enforce treaty of Versailles

S- stop war

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Silesia- Germany and poland, had plebiscite, didn't join together

Aaland Island- Finland and Sweden, finland got them

Mosul- Turkey invaded Iraq, Iraq appealed and the Turks went away

Bulgaria- Greece invaded, appealed to league, Greece went away

Others- attacked slave owners

Kellogg-Briand Pact- signed by 23, supported by 65 to outlaw war

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Vilna- Poland invaded Vilna

Invasion of the Ruhr- France invaded

Memel- League told Lithuania to leave, Conference of ambassardors agreed

Corfu- Italy took Corfu, Conference of ambassadors forced Greece to pay compensation

Other- Dawes plan

Disarmament- Britain objected to 1923 conference

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The Depression


people turned to dictatorial governments due to mass unemployment and poverty (Germany). 25 countries became dicatorships

Self interest

Countries didn't want war so could be civil. 1930s countries began to leave the League (Germany and Japan)

Britain and France

Didnt send army to Manchuria, impose sanctions on Italy. Didnt rearm against Hitler

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Collapse of international peace

Manchuria- 1931

Japan needed more land because the population was increasing, had no raw materials and couldn't export. They built a railway through Manchuria which was then bombed by the Chinese. The Japanese army moved in to protect the border. China asked the League for help, when Japan ignored the Lytton report was created. It stated that it was Japan's fault, but Japan also ignored the report. Japan then left the League and started a full invasion in July 1937

Italy and Abyssinia- 1935

Mussolini wanted overseas empire and Abyssinia was next to other Italian colonies. The clash between the Abyssinian and Italian troops at Wal Wal meant they had an excuse to invade. Abyssinia asked for help and the League imposed economic sanctions on Italy but did not include war materials which they sent off to the troops. May 1936 Italy had complete control over Abyssinia and Italy left the League in 1937. 

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Why did the League fail?

B- Britain and France didn't use thier armies

U- USA, USSR and Germany never joined or left the League

S- structure meant that decisions were slow

T- Treaty of Versailles set up the League which got hated 

E- Economic depressionmeant that countries took self-interest

D- Dicators would not compromise

U- unsuccessful as the League damged it's reputation so countries left

P- powerless as they had no army

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Hitlers Foreign Policy and Appeasement

1936- Anschluss- Plebiscite to join Ausria and Germany was created and 90% approved the anschluss. Britain and France did nothing

1938- Czechoslavakia crisis- Hitler wants Czechoslavika, thier not willing to give up so Hitler threatens them with war. Munich Conference agreed to give Hitler his demands. Hitler and Chamberlian signed an agreement to not go to war. Hitler took control of Czechoslavakia and so Chamberlain promised Poland that Britain would protect them as he knew that the appeasement was dead.

Appeasement. (giving Hitler what he wants in order to prevent war)

Pros: sympathy for Germany, time to rearm, the desire for peace and the treat of communism was decreased

Cons: morally wrong, missed chances to stop Hitler and misjudged Hitler

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Nazi Soviet Pact and steps to war

Germany and the Sovet union sign a non agressive pact but also signed a secret pact to split up Poland between them. Britain had made a pact with Poland to protect it but it left Britain and France to fight Germany alone.

8 steps to war:

S- Saar became under control of the League but then voted to return to Germany

C- conscription was introduced by Hitler and he began to rearm

R- Hitler invaded the Rhineland breaking the Treaty of Versailles

A- Germany took over Hilter, breaking the Treaty of Versailled

M- At Munich Britain and France gave Hitler Sunderland

U- Hitler makes secret treaty with USSR

P- Hilter invaded Poland and so Britain declared war in 1939

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