The U.S. Turns Away From The World
A. What were Wilson's arguments in favor of ratification of the Treaty of Versailles? 1. The future of world peace is at stake.
2. The League of Nations is the future of solving world problems. 3. Failure to be involved places us and the world in danger. The US must have a place at the table to take a leadership role. B. What were the arguments given against ratification and in favor of isolation? 1. League of nations would create new contacts.
2. Contacts breed involvement.
3. Involvement meant war.
4. League of Nations might be able to control US military personnel C. What happened?
1. The Treaty as you can imagine received enormous opposition. Henry Cabot Lodge and Alfred Beveridge strongly denounced the treaty, especially Article Ten which called upon the US to support League actions. Wilson campaigned vigorously and gave 37 speeches in 29 cities in a span of only three weeks. He declared that US soldiers should not have died in vain. After a dramatic speech in Colorado, Wilson collapsed. His health had been poor for six months and the strain of the trip was too much. He was rushed back to Washington and a few days later had a massive stroke. For the next year and a half he was incapable of running the government but was protected by his wife and closest advisors. 1. In March 1920 the US Senate finally killed the treaty. The United States did not ratify the Treaty of Versailles and we did not join the League of Nations. Wilson considered this a great failure and it plagued him until his death.
Disgust was deepening. Hundreds of thousands of American boys were returning from Europe, irritated by cheating French shopkeepers, and most favorably impressed by the blonde German girls. American's everywhere were saying that Europe could jolly well "stew in its own juice." In the face of such wide spread disillusionment Wilson would have troubles in arousing people again. -Thomas A. Bailey, Historian
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