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The League of Nations was a Great Success in the 1920's. Nobody could have foreseen its eventual failure. How far do you agree with this statement?

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Introduction

The League of Nations was a Great Success in the 1920's. Nobody could have foreseen its eventual failure. How far do you agree with this statement? To evaluate the 'success' of the league we must firstly identify what the leagues aims were. We can then begin to asses how successful the league was at achieving them. The leagues main aims were: 1. To discourage aggression from any nation. 2. To encourage countries to co-operate, especially in business and trade. 3. To encourage nations to disarm 4. To improve the living and working conditions of people in all parts of the world. Let us look at the 'aims' one at time and see how far they were achieved. Firstly in the case of Vilna 1920 the league did nothing when a private polish army attacked Lithuania's largely polish populated capital city Vilna (now Vilnius). ...read more.

Middle

Sweden accepted the leagues ruling and war was avoided. This was a success. Secondly there were successes when encouraging countries to co-operate, in business and trade especially. The Upper Silesia, 1921 case is a perfect example of success, on the leagues part. Upper Silesia was an industrial region on the border of Germany and Poland. It was populated by both German and Polish people. Both Germany and Poland wanted control of it, due to its rich iron and steel industry. In 1920 a plebiscite was organised for Silesians to vote for which country they wished to join. The league sent out British and French troops to keep order at polling booths. The industrial areas voted mainly for Germany and the rural areas voted mainly for Poland. The league therefore divided the region along these lines but it built in many safe guards to prevent future disputes. ...read more.

Conclusion

When a refugee crisis hit turkey in 1922, hundreds of thousands of people had to be housed in refugee camps. The league worked quickly to stamp out cholera, smallpox, and dysentery in the camps. We can see that in some of its aims the league was much more successful then in others. For example the league had many more successes in improving the lives of civilians then in disarmament. From the start the league was faced with certain weaknesses, so perhaps it is not true to say that "nobody could have foreseen its eventual failure" For example it was weak because they didn't have their own armed forces and the fact that the USA never joined weakened the league even more. In conclusion I think the league was a great success in the 1920's because although we now know with hindsight that the league eventually failed. In the 1920's it helped the lives of many civilians and settled many border disputes. ...read more.

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