House Resolution N




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1936
January 3. President Roosevelt in his message to Congress said the United States, by the arms embargo and by the discouragement of the export of war materials above peacetime level, declined to encourage the prosecution of war. ("As a consistent part of a clear policy, the United States is following a twofold neutral­ity toward any and all nations which engage in wars not of im­mediate concern to the Americas." Congressional Record [Bound], Vol. 80, pt. I, p. 28.)

Ethiopian Emperor requested a League commission of inquiry. (To inquire into the manner in which hostilities were being con­ducted by both belligerents. Survey 1935, Vol. II, p. 328.)


January 11-March 1. General strike in Syria. (Organized and led by the young intellectuals, the bourgeoisie of the larger towns, and the Nationalist bloc. Ibid. 1936, p. 75.)
January 15. Japan withdrew from the London Naval Conference. (". . . as it has become sufficiently clear at today's session of the First Committee that the basic principles embodied in our pro­posal for a comprehensive limitation and reduction of naval armaments cannot secure general support. . . . we regret to state that we cannot subscribe, for the reasons we have repeatedly set forth, to the plans of quantitive limitation submitted by the other Dele­gations." Doc. Int. Affairs 1936, pp. 614, f. Japan, Vol. I, p. 297. )
January 18. .Inner Mongolian forces occupied Changpei and set up an autonomous government with Manchukuoan support. (Partly spontaneous revolt against the Chinese provincial administration because of their oppressive methods of government and ruthless policy of land expropriation, partly Japanese machinations. Survey 1936, pp. 914, 942.)
January 20. Ethiopia asked from the League further economic em­bargoes on Italy and financial assistance for themselves. (So that the aggressor be prevented from succeeding, and the States Members, acting together, display their strength and their unity in a way which would make it thoroughly clear, at last, that ag­gression did not pay. Ibid. 1935, Vol. II, p. 329.)
January 21. Foreign Minister Koki Hirota told the Japanese Diet that the time had come "to try to introduce our arts and culture to other lands, and thus contribute towards international good understanding and to the enrichment of world civilization and the promotion of the peace and happiness of mankind." ("We have succeeded in building up our national strength and prestige by adding and adapting to our civilization Occidental arts and science which we have imported during the past years." Doc. Int. Affairs 1936, p. 637.)
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January 22. The League Committee of Eighteen decided to appoint a committee of experts to conduct a technical examination of the conditions governing the trade in and transport of oil and oil products. (". . . with a view to submitting an early report . . . on the effectiveness of the extension of measures of embargo to the above mentioned commodities." Ibid. 1935, Vol. II, p. 223.)

Britain informed the League coordination committee that France, Greece, Turkey, and Yugoslavia had promised faithfully to apply all the obligations devolving upon them under the Covenant, in consequence of measures taken in application of Art. 16. (". . . desire to inform [the League] . . . of the re­sults of the exchanges of views . . ." Ibid., pp. 304 309.)


January 24. The League Council asked the Danzig Senate to take all measures necessary to govern in conformity with the spirit of the constitution. (Because of the two decrees of Aug. 29, 1935, amending the penal code and the code of penal procedure, which the Permanent Court of International Justice had found in­consistent with the constitution of the Free City. Ibid. 1936, p. 433.)

Italy protested the military agreements of Britain with France, Greece, Turkey, and Yugoslavia. (". . . the agreements . . . were arrived at on the basis of a hypothesis . . . not only arbi­trary, but completely inexistent. . . . Now such a decision by the League of Nations has never been taken, since the applica­tion of economic and financial measures in connection with the Italo Ethiopian conflict has been the object of no discussion by the Council or the Assembly as such. The Governments of the States Members applying the above mentioned measures . . . have acted, instead, in pursuance of decisions which each of them has taken individually . . . for a Government of a State Member of the League of Nations–a Government which is not a party to a controversy–to take, independently of any decision of the League of Nations, individual initiatives, and to promote special agreements of a military character . . . cannot contribute to European security and does not appear to be in harmony with the spirit of the Covenant. Such initiatives and military agree­ments, in sectors extraneous to the Italo Ethiopian conflict, create–as they have in fact created–an atmosphere of serious unrest and therefore a danger to European peace." Ibid. 1935, Vol. II, p. 311 ff. Cf. Jan. 22, supra.)


January 30. President Roosevelt wrote President Augustin P. Justo of Argentina suggesting that an extraordinary inter American conference be summoned at Buenos Aires at an early date to determine how the maintenance of peace among the American Republics might best be safeguarded. ("With the conclusion of the Chaco war and with the reestablishment of peace throughout this continent, there would appear to be offered an opportunity for helpful counsel among our respective governments which may not soon again be presented." State Release 1936, No. 33, p. 163. Cf. Peace, p. 312.)

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February 5. The Fascist Grand Council passed a resolution declaring foreign trade "a function of public interest which justifies direct control on the part of the Corporative State." (Because of the re­emergence of the possibility of an oil sanction. Survey 1935, Vol. II, pp. 335 f.)
February 12. The British Secretary of State for the Colonies, J. H. Thomas, denied that Britain had considered or was considering the handing over of any of the British Colonies or territories held under mandate. (In answer to a question in the House of Com­mons. Doc. Int. Affairs 1937, p. 235.)

The League oil committee of experts reported that oil sanctions with the help of the United States would be an effective embargo in three to three and a half months. (Considering the figures as to consumption, to stocks, and to supplies en route. Ibid. 1935, Vol. II, p. 228.)


February 13. The French Government dissolved the Camelots du Roi and the Ligue d'Action Francaise. (Because of an attack on Premier Blum. Survey 1936, p. 946.)
February 16. The Popular Front in Spain won a majority in a general election. (A reaction from the. conservatist, monarchist, and fascist influence of the previous years. Ibid. 1937, Vol. II, pp. 18 f.)
February 18. The Swiss Federal Council decided to prohibit all Nazi organizations and activities among German residents in Swiss territory. (Feb. 4 the leader of the Nazi organization among the German residents in Switzerland had been assassinated by a Yugoslavian Jew, and the German press responded with a volley of abuse against the Swiss and their Government. Ibid. 1936, pp. 45 f.)
February 19. Premier Manuel Azana's Government took office in Spain. (Following the Popular Front Victory of Feb. 16, supra. Ibid. 1937, Vol. II, p. 20.)

A. C. De Graeff, Netherlands Foreign Minister, said Holland would never cede one square inch of her "territory even to serve the claims for expansion of other nations. . . ." (Official state­ment of policy. Doc. Int. Affairs 1937, p. 256.)


February 21. German communiqué repeated that the Franco Soviet pact was incompatible with the Locarno treaties and the Covenant of the League of Nations. (Because of "the provision of the protocol to the Franco Soviet Treaty of Alliance, under which the 'two partners while undertaking to apply to the Council of the League before proceeding to any such action such as they could base upon the well known Article 16 of the Covenant of the League, have, nonetheless, to carry out the obligation of assistance agreed upon between them if for some reason or other the Council fails to dive a recommendation in this sense or is unable to reach a unanimous decision." Ibid. 1936, pp. 19 f.)

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Chancellor Hitler in interview insisted that there was no longer any cause for conflict between France and Germany despite "very bad things about France" in Mein Kampf. ("You want me to correct my book, like a man of letters bringing out a new and revised edition of his works. But I am not a man of letters. I am a politician. I undertake my corrections in my, foreign policy, which aims at an understanding with France. If I succeed in bringing about the Franco German rapprochement, that will be a correction which will be worthy to be made. I enter my correction in the great book of history!" Ibid., p. 21.)
February 26. Ex Prime Minister Makoto Saito, Minister for Finance Korekiyo Takahashi, and Director General of Military Education Jotaro Watanabe were assassinated by 20 officers accompanied by a thousand members of the Regiment of Guards. (It was an attempt by the extremists of the Japanese Army to force the hand of their military chiefs by direct action against the repre­sentatives of the social and political order which they designed to overthrow. They wanted a military socialist totalitarian state under direct rule of the Emperor. Election results of Feb. 20 had shown a heavy loss of the government's opponents. The Young Officers had discovered that Saito had been responsible for the dismissal of General Jinzaburo Mazaki, their guiding genius; they bore a bitter grudge against the government because of the stringent official measures taken to control their political ac­tivities. ,Survey 1936, pp. 892 f.)
February 27. Italy intimated her inability to sign any naval agree­ment. (Unwilling because the Powers were imposing sanctions on her; Italy said she was not satisfied with the proposed size of battleships and zone of no construction. Ibid., pp. 99 f, 953.)
February 29. American neutrality resolution of Aug. 31, 1935, strength­ened and extended to May 1, 1937 [49 Stat. 1152]. (Treaty Inf. 1936, No. 78, pp. 7 f.)

German Government informed the British of their willingness to enter negotiations for a bilateral naval agreement. (Britain had invited such negotiations with a view to incorporating the terms of the general treaty to be signed at the London Confer­ence in order to prevent Germany from initiating a competition in, types contrary to qualitative limitation. Survey 1936, pp. 98 f.)

President Roosevelt urged exporters to hold trade with Italy and Ethiopia to a peacetime level. (". . . greatly to exceed that basis, with the result of earning profits not possible during peace, and especially with the result of giving actual assistance to the carrying on of war, would serve to magnify the very evil of war which we seek to prevent." State Release 1936, No. 336, p. 198. Cf. Peace, p. 315.)
March 2. Britain told the League Committee of Eighteen that she favored an oil embargo. (". . . having considered the findings of the experts' report. . . ." Doc. Int. Affairs 1935, Vol. II, p. 421.)

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March 3. League Committee of Thirteen appealed to both Ethiopian and Italian Governments for negotiations in the framework of the League and the spirit of the Covenant. (". . . with a view to the prompt cessation of hostilities and the definite restoration of peace." Ibid., p. 421.)
March 5. Ethiopia accepted League appeal and agreed to such opening of negotiations. (". . . even before the outbreak of war, we did our best to ensure peace by equitable conciliation in conformity with the spirit of the Covenant. . . ." Ibid., p. 422.)
March 6. Franco Belgian General Staff agreement renewed. (The object was to enable the parties to carry out their obligations under the Rhineland pact of Locarno. Survey 1936, p. 353. Cf. Doc. Int. Affairs 1936, pp. 72 f.)
March 7. German troops occupied the Rhineland. ("It is an undisputed fact that the Franco Soviet pact is exclusively directed against Germany.

"It is an undisputed fact that in the pact France undertakes, in the event of a conflict between Germany and the Soviet Union, obligations which go far beyond her duty laid down in the Cove­nant of the League of Nations, and which compel her to take military action against Germany even when she cannot appeal either to a recommendation or to an, actual decision of the Council of the League.

"It is an undisputed fact that France, in such a case, claims for herself the right to decide on her own judgment who is the aggressor.

"The German Government have continually emphasized during the negotiations of the last years their readiness to observe and fulfill all the obligations arising from the Rhine pact as long as the other Contracting Parties were ready on their side to main­tain the pact. This obvious and essential condition can no longer be regarded as being fulfilled by France. . . . Conse­quently Germany regards herself for her part as no longer bound by this dissolved treaty. The German Government are now con­strained to face the new situation created by this alliance, a situa­tion which is rendered more acute by the fact that the Franco­-Soviet treaty has been supplemented by a treaty of alliance between Czechoslovakia and the Soviet Union exactly parallel in form. In accordance with the fundamental right of a nation to secure its frontiers and ensure its possibilities of defense, . . ." Ibid., pp. 42 ff.)


March 7. Germany offered to enter negotiations to create a mutually demilitarized zone with France, Belgium, and the Netherlands; to conclude 25 year nonaggression pacts with France and Belgium; to ask Britain and Italy to sign the pacts as guarantors; to conclude an air pact; to conclude nonaggression pacts with countries bordering Germany on the east, including Lithuania; to reenter the League of Nations. ("In order, however, to avoid any misinterpretation of their intentions and to establish beyond doubt the purely defensive character of these measures, as well

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as to express their unchangeable longing for a real pacification of Europe between states which are equals in rights and equally respected, . . . in order to strengthen further these security agreements between the Western Powers. . . . As the Lithua­nian Government have in the last few months corrected their attitude towards the Memel territory to a certain extent, . . . on condition that the guaranteed autonomy of the Memel terri­tory is effectively developed. . . . Now that Germany's equality of rights and the restoration of her full sovereignty over the entire territory of the German Reich have finally been at­tained, . . ." Ibid., pp. 44 45.)
March 8. France and Belgium asked the League Council to consider the question of German entry into the demilitarized zone and the repudiation of the Locarno pact. ("In virtue of Article 8 of the Treaty of Locarno, that Treaty cannot cease to have effect otherwise than by a decision of the Council of the League of Nations voting by a two third majority. . . .

"The German Government has thus expressly violated Article 43 of the Treaty of Versailles and Article 1 of the Treaty of Locarno. . . Consequently, in conformity with Article 4, of the last named treaty . . ." Ibid., pp. 45 f.

"This fact constituting a violation of Articles 42 and 43 of the Treaty of Versailles . . . in conformity with Article 4, paragraph 1, of the Treaty of Guarantee of Locarno. . . ." Ibid., p. 46.)

Italy agreed in principle to the opening of negotiations for the settlement of the Italo Ethiopian dispute. (". . . in response to the appeal which has been addressed to it . . ." Ibid. 1935, Vol. II, p. 422. Cf. Mar. 3, supra.)


March 9. British Secretary for Foreign Affairs Anthony Eden con­demned German unilateral repudiation, promised British aid to France in case of attack, expressed concern for the future. ("The course taken by the German Government . . .both com­plicates and aggravates the international situation. . . . His Majesty's Government in the United Kingdom, notwithstanding the German repudiation of the Treaty, would regard themselves as in honor bound to come in the manner provided in the Treaty, to the assistance of the country attacked. . . . One of the main foundations of the peace of Western Europe has been cutaway and, if peace is to be secured, there is a manifest duty to rebuild." Commons, Vol. 309, col. 1812.)
March 12. The Locarno Powers, Belgium, Britain, France, and Italy, recognized unanimously that the reoccupation of the demili­tarized zone was illegal. (". . . constituted a clear violation of Article 42 and Article 43 of the Treaty of Versailles and of the Treaty of Locarno." Doc. Int. Affairs 1936, p. 81.)

Russia and the Mongolian People's Republic signed a mutual assistance pact. (". . . taking into consideration the inalter­able friendship that has existed between their countries since the liberation of the territory of the Mongolian People's Republic, thanks to the support of the Red Army, in 1921, from the White Guard detachments and the military forces with which the latter


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were connected and which penetrated into Soviet territory, and desirous of maintaining the peace of the Far East and further strengthening the existing friendly relations between their countries, . . ." Ibid., p. 472.)
Mach 18. Australia rejected the possibility of the return of German colonies. ("The return of the territories under Australian man­date is unthinkable. Every country is entitled to examine international issues in the light of its own security and national interest. The inviolability and integrity of Australian territories are as much one of her people's cardinal aims as the 'White Australia' policy. New Guinea's geographical position, its natural harbors and facilities for naval and military aircraft, are of strategic value to Australia . . ." Ibid, 1937, p. 249.)
March 14. League Council met to consider consequences of German invasion of the Rhineland. (At call of France and Belgium. Cf. March 8, supra. Ibid. 1936, pp. 82 87. "The question at issue is whether the practice of the fait accompli, the unilateral repudiation of undertakings freely and solemnly accepted, are going to be set up in Europe as a political system; whether treaties are going to be considered as at any moment and immediately capable of modification at the will of their signatories, and whether a government, in the exercise of its own power, may go back to­day on its promises of yesterday." Ibid. Cf. Statement of Britain, March 17, Ibid., p. 101.) ,
March 17. Maxim Litvinoff, Russian delegate to the League of Na­tions, promised Russia would take part in all measures accept­able to the Council on the question of German repudiation of Locarno. (". . . because the whole sense of Mr. Hitler's state­ments, and of his proposals in the sphere of international political relations, amounts to the organization of a campaign against the peoples of the State I represent, and to the formation of a coali­tion against them of the whole of Europe–if possible, the whole of the world. His aggression may, in fact, aim at other countries in the immediate future. His attacks on the Soviet Union may, so far, serve merely as a smoke screen for aggression which is being prepared against other states; but the very fact that he selects the Soviet Union for this purpose, as the target of his incessant attacks, and that he has done this again in connec­tion with his breach of the Locarno treaty gives me the right to speak openly and with especial energy of the inward essence of Mr. Hitler's aggressive foreign policy." Ibid., pp. 96 f.)
March 19. The Locarno Powers reaffirmed their mutual obligations, offered Germany a Rhine buffer zone, air and nonaggression pacts, mutual assistance agreements, revision of the Rhineland, and an international conference on security, arms, economic re­lations, and her return to the League. ("Whereas: (1) Scrupu­lous respect for all treaty obligations is a fundamental principle of international life and an essential condition of the maintenance of peace; (2) It is an essential principle of the law of nations that no power can liberate itself from the engagements of a treaty

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nor modify the stipulations thereof except with the consent of the other contracting parties; (3) The breach of Article 43 of the Treaty of Versailles and the unilateral action taken by the German Government in violation of the Treaty of Locarno without recourse to the procedure laid down by the Treaty of Locarno for the settlement of disputes conflict with these principles; . . .

"Considering that the maintenance of peace and the organiza­tion of collective security can only be assured by the respect for treaties and the limitation of armaments; that the reestablishment of economic relations between the nations on a healthy basis is equally necessary to the process of reconstruction, . . ." Ibid, pp. 127 130.)


March 20. Ethiopia appealed to the League for intervention and reminded it that no effective action had yet been taken. ("Cir­cumstances afford unquestionable evidence that the Italian Gov­ernment is still resolved to continue its aggression against Ethiopia until its enterprise is crowned with complete success–to bring about by unscrupulous and unlimited violence the subjugation of Ethiopia, in violation of Article 10 of the Covenant, whereby Italy undertook to respect the territorial integrity and political independence of every Member of the League. . . . It is the strict duty of all the Members of the League to prevent the, aggressor from prosecuting his enterprise." Ibid. 1935, Vol. II, p. 423.)
March 21. Ethiopia reported that Italy, despite engagements to the contrary, was destroying ambulances, using gas and hyperite, massacring civilians. (It wished the Members of the League "to consider what effective steps can be taken to bring to an end forthwith the atrocities committed by Italy." Ibid. p. 424.)
March 23. Additional protocols to those of Rome of March 17, 1934, signed by Austria, Hungary, and Italy. (Because they "note with satisfaction . . . the favorable results attained by the con­tinuous collaboration of the three Governments for the mainte­nance of peace and for the economic readjustment of Europe . . . recognize it to be the interest of the three countries to harmonize their action to an ever greater extent, in all fields, with such ulterior developments of which the European situation may be susceptible . . ." Ibid. 1936, p. 308.)
March 24. Germany rejected Locarno Powers proposals of March 19 [supra]. ("Lasting agreements between the European nations with the aim of really guaranteeing peace can only be concluded in an atmosphere of sympathetic recognition and consideration of the natural, equal, vital, and political .rights of all the nations participating therein. Any attempt to introduce a new system of order in Europe by the old methods of a hate inspired division of the nations into those with more and those with less rights, into defamed and honorable nations, or even into dictator nations and subject nations, must lead to the same result because it would be begun under the old conditions, which have proved themselves to be pernicious. . . .

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