Makers of the Modern World: Chaim Weizmann
The Zionist Dream
The Zionist cause was peripheral to the European concerns of the Paris Peace Conference, yet Chaim Weizmann (1874–1952), future President of the State of Israel, ensured Zionist voices were at the centre of diplomatic negotiations crucial to the future of Palestine.
Makers of the Modern World: South America and the Treaty of Versailles
Four South American nations – Ecuador, Peru, Bolivia and Uruguay – attended the Peace Conference. Their diplomats shared a common aim of maintaining trade links with Europe and the US, and the hope, ultimately dashed, of a US-backed League of Nations.
Makers of the Modern World: General Smuts
Jan Christian Smuts wrote of the Paris Conference, ‘Such a chance comes but once in a whole era of history – and we missed it’. Lentin surveys Smuts’ role in wartime and at the peace talks, describing him as ‘the most principled, level-headed and far-sighted’ of the delegates.
Makers of the Modern World: Pašić and Trumbić
The Kingdom of Serbs, Croats and Slovenes
The delegates of the new Kingdom of Serbs, Croats and Slovenes (Yugoslavia) – Pašić, the wartime Prime Minister of Serbia, and Trumbić, a Dalmatian Croat – had differing territorial objectives but were united in an ideal: unification and international recognition for Yugoslavia. Slightly off-mint.
Makers of the Modern World: Ignacy Paderewski
After sketching the historical background to the Polish situation in 1914, this study focuses on Ignacy Paderewski, the internationally renowned pianist and nationalist who represented Poland in Paris and who contributed greatly to its emergence as an independent nation in 1919. Slightly off-mint.
Makers of the Modern World: WF Massey
New Zealand’s wartime Prime Minister, William Massey went to the Peace Conference to fight for his country’s interests, including recognition of its wartime sacrifice; a strong, united Empire and imperial preference in trade; and practical measures against future German aggression. Slightly off-mint.
Makers of the Modern World: Prince Saionji
A powerful statesman and inscrutable diplomat, Saionji led a delegation committed to achieving racial equality and international influence. Their lack of success and the Conference’s compromise – the granting of colonial territory – sowed the seeds of further conflict. Slightly off-mint.
Makers of the Modern World: Vittorio Orlando
Against history’s ‘default’ position on Italy’s First World War history – its poor military performance and unjustified demands at the Peace Conference – this study examines the country’s aims and actions through the career of its wartime leader Vittorio Emanuele Orlando. Slightly off-mint.
Makers of the Modern World: Maharaja of Bikaner
Over one million Indian soldiers fought for Britain during the War and at the Peace Conference India was classed as a ‘belligerent power with special interests’. This study focuses on the Indian princes’ representative, the ‘magnificent Maharajah’ Ganga Singh, and the emerging debate on Indian self-government. Slightly off-mint.
Makers of the Modern World: Mihály Károlyi and István Bethlen
Structured around the careers of two future Hungarian Prime Ministers, Károlyi and Bethlen, this volume shows how the punitive terms imposed by the Treaty of Trianon led Hungary to its future alliance with the Nazis, defeat and Soviet domination. Slightly off-mint.
Makers of the Modern World: Friedrich Ebert
Imperial Chancellor as of 9 November 1918, Ebert guided the German delegation from Berlin. Rejecting the Versailles Treaty demands for punitive reparations, war crimes trials and admission of war guilt, Ebert considered re-opening hostilities before finally agreeing to sign. Slightly off-mint.
Makers of the Modern World: Eduard Beneš and Tomáš Masaryk
Tomáš Masaryk returned from exile to become first President of the Czechoslovak Republic in December 1918. If Masaryk was ‘the stallion of the Czechoslovak cause’, Eduard Beneš was its coolly logical and hard-working advocate, arguing for the nation’s right to independence.
Makers of the Modern World: Wellington Koo
The return of Shandong, once a German colony, then occupied by Japan, was the focus of China’s Peace Conference negotiations. When Japan’s claim was upheld, the Chinese delegate, the distinguished diplomat Wellington Koo, refused to sign the Treaty of Versailles.
Makers of the Modern World: Central America and the Treaty of Versailles
Despite being invited to Paris because the USA wanted them there, Guatemala, Honduras, Nicaragua, Panama, Cuba and Haiti were most concerned with the new League of Nations, hopeful that it would protect them against the interventions of their powerful neighbour.
Makers of the Modern World: Sir Robert Borden
Canada’s Prime Minister from 1911 to 1920, Borden went to Paris convinced that the British Dominion of Canada must assume full sovereignty and, by the efforts of his delegation, the country did gain international autonomy, signing the Versailles Treaty in 1919. Slightly off-mint.
Makers of the Modern World: Aleksandŭr Stamboliĭski
The victors dictated the peace settlement: there was virtually no negotiation for the defeated, and Stamboliĭski, Bulgaria’s new leader, had to accept the terms of the Treaty of Neuilly. This study examines his career and the agrarian political ideas that survived his murder in 1923.