The Impact Of The Paris 1919 Peace Conference

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The Impact of the Paris 1919 Peace Conference


At the Peace Conference held in Paris from January to May 1919, the "Council of Four" (France, UK, Italy and United States) had imposed the will of the victors to the vanquished, not respecting the principles announced in the Fourteen Points of President Thomas Wilson. Thus, were numerous and resentment fueled the problems of international relations between the two world wars. Germany, considered responsible for the conflict was not only territorially amputated, but also unarmed, and above all subject to the payment, for decades, huge repairs. It held that the Treaty of Versailles imposed on him was a diktat inadmissible (Marks, 14).

The Central and Eastern Europe found itself divided: the disappearance of Austria-Hungary, resulting in the creation of many small states are often very fragile, unhappy with boundaries that did very little account of the problems of nationalities - all potential germs to new conflicts. The winners had been more concerned to construct a "cordon sanitaire" against the spread of revolutionary ideology outside the USSR. Italy, though victorious, was also dissatisfied with his lot, saying the victory "mutilated" because its claims to Dalmatia and Albania were not met.Japan considered very poor acquisitions in Asia.

The failure of peace efforts

If the twenties appeared as a period marked by the desire to build a stable peace, the situation changed dramatically with the effects of the Great Depression and the rise of fascism. The establishment in 1920, in Geneva, the League responded to a generous and raised a great hope: she had to guarantee peace through collective security. She opened an international forum for all acceding countries (but only the winners or the country remained neutral during the conflict could join). The powers of the League, however, remained limited in its powers of persuasion, in case of difficulties, it could take against a recalcitrant State or contravened the principles of the organization, the decisions of moral or economic sanctions - its members being free to apply or not. In addition, the U.S. has not ratified the Treaty of Versailles, n'adhérèrent not the League of Nations, thus limiting its action. Other indicators shed light on the peaceful spirit of the twenties (Sharp, 423).

The rise of fascism and the establishment of totalitarian dictatorships

At the end of World War I, the problems related to treaty implementation and the economic and social difficulties that were facing governments had threatened to quickly and encouraged the rise of political protests, from the revolutionary Communist left, but also new organizations who claimed a new ideology, fascism.

May 4th Movement

In 1917, the Republic of China entered into war against Germany to the Allies. In 1919, at the Paris Peace Conference which led to the Treaty of Versailles, the Allies attribute to the Empire of Japan into the territories of the Shandong previously under control of the German Empire. This requirement was one of Japan Highlights of Twenty-One Demands presented to China in 1915. Japan, already present in Shandong since 1914, and obtained permission to remain in the long term(Trachtenberg, 24).

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