President Woodrow Wilson of the United States, unlike his constituents, saw WWW as an opportunity to emerge as a superpower In the 20th century. After monopolizing popularity for America’s entrance onto war with his Fourteen Points Address, Americans and Europeans alike were eager to watch Wilson play peace maker as war came to a close and the Paris Peace Conference followed.
Although coming into the situation with the upper hand, Willow’s lack of shared information with the American people drove down his approval ratings, sparking a chain of events, which eventually contributed to the defeat of America’s entrance Into the League of Nations In Congress (Brewer 81 upon arrival to the Paris Peace Conference of 1918 President Woodrow Wilson and the united States had the political stronghold, however Willow’s diplomatic secrecy while in attendance at the conference, paired with legal concerns of the United States Congress, caused Wilson to lose credibility at home and abroad, ultimately leading to the failure of the United States to Join the League of Nations. As World War I waged In Europe, the United States loomed on the outskirts.
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The majority of Americans had no Interest In Joggling In the war, carrying the belief that conflict was inevitable overseas and they should mind their own business on this side of the Atlantic. Initially, the U. S. Government was on board with the public, happy and eager to avoid war costs. However, as war persisted on and time passed, President Woodrow Wilson saw an opportunity to strategically position America to become a superpower in the 20th century. Professor Robert Hanging, PhD. Of Suffolk university describes the United States gradual, tactical entrance Into WWW as beginning with outward U. S. Support for Great Britain In the form of trade. The plan was furthered in 191 5 with the sinking of the Louisiana by a German submarine while it sailed from New York back to England.
This significant loss of American life caused tensions to rise between the U. S. And Germany. The final straw came in 1917 when Germany rescinded its promise to only fire at enemy submarines, and threatened to sink anything that came Into British waters. “The world must be made safe for democracy,” said Wilson; and with this mantra the U. S. Entered WWW (65th Congo. , 1st sees. , doc. 5). With entrance into the war Wilson was able to obtain the opportunity he sought to become a major player in world policy. In January 191 8, the President delivered the Fourteen Points Address. The address outlined what he planned to see in the post- war world.
Among the points, Wilson promised open diplomacy, self-determination, ND a League of Nations to ensure eternal peace (“Speech on the Fourteen Points”, setting the stage for him to assume a position of power in peace negotiations (Brewer 80). It isn’t long until Wilson seemingly gets his wish, for in the fall of 1918 most of the WWW combat comes to an end and by November preparations are made for a peace conference to be held in Paris. The President decided to attend the meeting himself; drawing the highest officials of all the attending countries. Upon arrival, Willow’s awareness of his high approval rating in Europe was confirmed writes Susan A. Brewer, author of Why America Fights, “… He French and British people, who poured into the streets to welcome the American president, confirmed Willow’s belief that the peace belonged to him” (Brewer 80).
Contrary to his belief, the Allies, consisting of Britain and France, were not convinced by their people’s favor of Wilson that they had to go along with everything he envisioned (Hanging). While Wilson sought a non-vindictive peace, “… The Allied leaders… Wanted revenge and reward” (Brewer 30). Although he had promised open diplomacy and the incorporation of Germany into the makings of the peace treaty, essentially, the United States, Britain, France, and at some points Italy, formed the agreement amongst themselves. As a result of the nation’s lack of say, some of the agreements that came from the Paris Peace Conference in regards to Germany were economically crippling.
The country was ordered to pay war reparations, lost all its overseas territory, had temporary occupation to ensure peace, and could no longer have any army or Ana over 100,000 people at any given time (Hanging). Other resolutions included that the small territories that were Germany’s or the Ottoman Empire’s old property would be elective colonies, or mandates, under the big powers. Some new independent states were formed in Central and Eastern Europe with the acceptance of the ideals and supervision of the big powers, although not nearly as many as promised in the Fourteen Points Address. The formation of these new nations served a practical purpose, in hopes that surrounding Germany with countries under big power management would deter future German invasions or uprisings (Hanging).
In respect to Woodrow Wilson, his principal goal was the establishment of a League of Nations; essentially, at its core, a mechanism designed to stabilize the kind f order he wanted to see in the world outside of the western hemisphere (Hanging). The League would call for big power collective engagement worldwide, in hopes of preventing something like WWW from happening again. The League would promote an open door framework for global trade. Its creation would also enforce the freezing of current territorial boundaries, including those established for new nations or mandates at the conference, to deter war from breaking out over land disputes. An executive council would preside over The League, where the big powers would have permanent seats, while other independent nations would rotate.
A League assembly would also be established, where all independent nations could participate so long as the groundwork set down by the world power was accepted (Hanging). The League was settled upon at the Paris Peace Conference and established from there on out. Much to his surprise, upon his arrival home Wilson would spend much of the rest of his presidency defending the League of Nations and promoting the importance that the United States’ Join the coalition. Due to the lack of information provided to the people in terms of what was being discussed and agreed upon: The Wilson administration’s successful wartime management of the news fell apart in Paris.
Wilson took muckraking Journalist and friend Ray Standard Baker to be press liaison, but since the talks were held in secret Baker had nothing to say. ICP Director Creel, along to do Peace Commission publicity, had lost the trust of the reporters. Out of 500 correspondents covering the conference, 150 were American; most of them were local Washington reporters who did not speak French and found it difficult to establish news sources in Paris. British and American reporters organized a protest against the secrecy. Brewer 81) With almost nothing to go on but hear say and speculation, the American public began receiving contradicting accounts of the beliefs and wants of those involved in conference negotiations, sparking a feeling of distrust between the people and the President.
Falsely believing that he still had majority support for the League of Nations, Wilson signed the peace treaty on June 28, 1919, which included the creation of the League. Waiting to release the contents of the agreement and the details as to how it was reached until ratification further widened the gap between the wants of the people and the President (Brewer 81). Wartime unity and support gradually began to fall apart. The general population was not alone in its hesitation to accept the terms of the Treaty of Versailles and the League of Nations. Members of Congress and political activists across the country began to disclose their skepticism regarding the agreement. Representatives in Washington, D. C. Ere concerned about whether or not the League’s Article 10, which necessitated collective security if requested, would override their ability to declare or reject war proposals. This obligation to send troops if requested by the League sparked fear of future calls to battle in Europe in troops ND townsfolk alike (Brewer 82). With such criticism coming from all walks of political life: conservatives, liberals, and citizens, Wilson decided to skip trying to convince Congress and go right to the American people. Upon returning from France, Wilson began a 10,000-mile, cross-country train tour featuring 32 speeches in 23 days in September 1919. The President described a world united by communication and transportation where business for the U. S. Lourdes in comparison to isolationism. He explained that no troops would be dragged off to battle unless the League Council votes were unanimous in agreement hat soldiers were necessary. Sadly for Wilson, as the trip went on his charisma, skill, and press coverage trailed off. He suffered a stroke along the route, forcing him to head home early and providing his critics with a chance to spread their message as he recovered (Brewer 84). The ratification of the League of Nations was officially rejected in March 1920 after failing by seven votes in the Senate. The silver lining for Wilson, The League of Nations was established, Just without the United States as a member (Brewer 84).
Susan Brewer provides several theories in regards to how Woodrow Wilson could eave possibly boosted support for the League of Nations: While they traumatized what the United States fought against, they were less clear about what the country fought for. Moreover, the silencing of dissent on the home which some sort of popular consensus might have developed. (84) When originally monopolizing the pro-war mentality in the American people upon entering World War l, propagandists depicted Germans as evil people who must be stopped. With time, this false hatred fades, and the public realizes they were so caught up in what America was fighting against, they failed to realized, or be informed of for that matter, what he country was fighting for.
In Willow’s eyes the reason to fight included power for the United States and a global network of trade, communication, and efforts to retain peace. Also during manipulation, rights to criticism of the war were revoked, inhibiting discussion that could have potentially made a lasting impression on a number of people (Hanging). Instead, people were silenced, and any constructive criticism was repressed along with flat-out opposition. At its beginning, World War I was instigated by an assassination, which when paired with the hunger for power amongst the European nations, made a recipe for disaster. While the American people wished to stay out of Rupee’s affairs, Woodrow Wilson saw WWW as a way for the United States to gain respect and prestige in the 20th century.
Running with this idea, Wilson patiently waited for the best and most precise time to enter the war. When Germany declared that it would sink any submarine in British waters, Wilson made his move. Wartime commenced in the U. S. , with pro-war propaganda and motivational speeches such as the Fourteen Points infiltrating American life. With most of the European nations already gravely weakened by combat expenses, fighting came to a halt shortly after the United States owned the war effort. The Paris Peace Conference, set-up to establish the treaty necessary to officially conclude WWW, should have been Willow’s time to shine, but instead ended with a sharp decline in his credibility and approval.
Keeping much of the proceedings of the conference private, Wilson alienated the American people, leading them to doubt their trust in the Commander in Chief, and their support for the League of Nations, an international organization aimed to keep peace and promote global open-door policy. Members of Congress were Just as concerned with he President’s handling of information in Paris, the terms and, and the legal obligations of Joining the League of Nations. Despite his best efforts, Willow’s dream of a League headed-up by the United States ended in March 1920 when it failed to achieve ratification in the Senate by 7 votes. Going into the Paris Peace Conference of 1918, President Woodrow Wilson and the United States certainly had political advantage.