Thursday, April 25, 2019

Today -100: April 25, 1919: The world is tired of war only for the time being


Major Gen. Leonard Wood says the idea that the League of Nations will prevent wars is “idle twaddle and a dream of mollycoddles”. Idle twaddle is the worst kind of twaddle. “The world is tired of war only for the time being,” he says, depressingly.

Italian Prime Minister Vittorio Orlando frames his decision to quit/threaten to quit the Peace Conference as a response to Woodrow Wilson’s public statement on Fiume, not because of his rejection of Italy annexing the city, oh no, but his temerity in appealing to the Italian people over the heads of its government, “treating the Italian people as if they were a barbarous people without a democratic government.” Well, give it two or three years.

Orlando reveals his plans for when he goes to Rome after storming out of the peace conference: “I shall show myself to the crowd, as it is my duty, and it shall express its feelings.” Italy plans to just go ahead and occupy Dalmatia and other areas promised it in the secret 1915 Treaty of London (the one Wilson says was superseded by the 14 Points). They’re kind of glossing over the fact that Fiume wasn’t mentioned in the Treaty of London.

Herbert Hoover, head of the Inter-Allied Relief Organization, threatens to stop food relief to Germany if strikes and other disorder continues.


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