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Letters on the Covenant
HENRY W. TAFT
Published Bimonthly by the
VYORLD PEACE FOUNDATION ,. P.‘ _ ..l
The corporation is constituted for the purpose of educating the people of all nations to a full knowledge of the waste and destructiveness of war, its evil effects on present social conditions and on the well-being of future generations, and to promote international justice and the brotherhood of man; and, generally, by every practical means to promote peace and good will among all mankind.—By-laws of the Corporation.
it is to this patient and thorough work of education, through the school, the college, the church, the press, the pamphlet and the book, that the World Peace Foundation addresses itself.—Edwin Ginn.
The idea of force can not at once he eradicated. it is useless to believe that the nations can be persuaded to disband their present armies and dismantle their present navies, trusting in each other or in the Hague Tribunal to settle any possible differences between them, unless, first, some substitute for the existing forces is provided and demonstrated by experience to be adequate to protect the rights, dignity and territory of the respective nations. My own belief is that the idea which underlies the movement for the Hague Court can be developed so that the nations can be persuaded each to contribute a small percentage of their military forces at sea and on land to form an I niernational Guard or Police Force.— Edwin Ginn.
*Incorporated under the laws of Massachusetts, July 12, 1910, as the International 5011001 of Peace. Name changed to world Peace Foundation, December 22, 1910.
A LEAGUE OF NATIONS
WORLD PEACE FOUNDATION
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LETTERS ON THE COVENANT OF THE LEAGUE OF NATIONS BY
Before taking up the several articles of the League of Nations Covenant in detail, some remarks must be made upon the general principles involved.
The first thing to be determined, and kept in mind, both by the framers of any document, and by those who study it, is the object to be attained. Now the primary object of any League Of Nations is the maintenance of peace in the World; for although it may well aim at other benefits, such as the suppression Of abuses, the relief of sufi'ering, the improvement of social conditions and of agencies for international co-operation, yet the experience of the struggle just closed has shown the predominant importance of preventing wars which, if unrestrained, threaten our civilization with destruction. Other benefits aimed at by the League may be tentative, may be attempted at first on a small scale and developed gradually as opportunity is offered; but the prevention of war must be efl'ective from the outset. This is the more difficult, however, because in trying any novel social experiment it is wise to disturb the existing traditions and habits as little as we can, in order to raise the fewest objections to its acceptance and to reduce the friction with customary practice to a minimum. In a League of Nations this means interfering with national autonomy as little as may be, consistently with attaining fully the end in view.
Assuming that the primary object of a League is to prevent War, it is clear that some other method Of settling disputes must