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PRELIMINARY PEACE CONFERENCE.
PROTOCOL No. .2.
AMERICAN COMMISSION TO NEGOTIATE PEACE.
[Preliminary peace conference, protocol No. 2, plenary session of January 25,1919.)
The Session is opened at 15 o'clock (3 p. m.) under the presidency of Mr. Clemenceau, President. Present:
For The United States Of America.
The President of the United States.
For The British Empire.
The Rt, Hon. D. Lloyd George.
The Rt, Hon. A. J. Balfour.
The Rt. Hon. G. N. Barnes.
The Hon. C. J. Doherty, Minister of Justice of Canada.
The Rt, Hon. Sir Joseph Ward, Bart., K. C. M. G., Minister of
Finance and Posts of New Zealand. The Rt. Hon. The Lord Robert Cecil, K. C, M. P., Technical
Delegate for the League of Nations.
Dominions And India.
The Rt. Hon. Sir Robert Borden, G.
C. M. G., K. C, Prime
The Rt. Hon. W. M. Hughes.
General The Rt. Hon. Louis Botha.
The Rt. Hon. W. F. Massey, Prime Minister.
The Rt. Hon. E. S. Montagu, M. P., Secretary of State for India. Major-General His Highness The Maharaja of Bikanir.
Mr. L. L. Klotz.
Mr. Andr6 Tardieu.
Mr. Jules Cambon.
Mr. L6on Bourgeois, Former President of the Council of Ministers.
Former Minister of Foreign Affairs, Technical Delegate for the
League of Nations. Marshal Foch.
Mr. V. E. Orlando, President of the Council of Ministers.
The Baron S. Sonnino.
The Marquis Salvago Raggi.
Mr. Antonio Salandra, Deputy, former President of the Council of
Ministers: Mr. Salvatore Barzilai, C. B., Deputy, former Minister. Mr. Scialoja, Senator of the Kingdom, Technical Delegate for the
League of Nations.
The Baron Makino, Former Minister of Foreign Affairs, Member
of the Diplomatic Advisory Council. The Viscount Chinda. Mr. K. Matsui. Mr. H. Ijuin, Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary of
His Majesty The Emperor of Japan at Rome.
Mr. Van den Heuvel.
Mr. Vandervelde, Minister of Justice, Minister of State.
Mr. Ismael Montes.
Mr. Olyntho de Magalhaes.
Mr. Lou Tseng Tsiang.
Mr. Chengting Thomas Wang.
Mr. Rafael Martinez Ortiz.
For Ecuador Mr. Dorn y de Alsua.
Mr. Eleftherios Veniselos, President of the Council of Ministers. Mr. Nicolas Politis.
For The Hedjaz
His Highness The Emir Feisal.
Mr. Rustem Haidar.
Mr. Francisco Garcia Calderon.
Mr. Roman Dmowski.
The Count Penha Garcia, Former President of the Chamber
of Deputies, Former Minister of Finance. Mr. Jayme Batalha Reis, Envoy Extraordinary and Minister
Plenipotentiary of Portugal at Petrograd.
Mr. Jean J. C. Bratiano.
The Prince Charoon.
For The Czecho-slovak Republic
Mr. Charles Kramar, President of the Council of Ministers.
Mr. Juan Carlos Blanco.
The President informs the Conference that, at the request of the Delegation of the United States, the approval of the Protocol of the first Session is postponed to the next Session, as that Delegation has not yet received the English text of Protocol No. 1 which it reserves the right to present to the Conference.
The order of the day calls for the appointment of five Commissions charged with the duty of examining the following questions:—
1. League of Nations.
2. Responsibility of the authors of the War and enforcement of
3. Reparation for damage.
4. International Legislation on Labor.
5. International Control of Ports, Waterways and Railwavs. The first Commission to be nominated concerns the League
of Nations, upon which subject the Bureau presents a draft resolution (Anex I.) which has been distributed in English and French to all the members of the Conference.
The discussion is opened on the question of the League of Nations.
The President of the United States delivers the following speech:
"I consider it a distinguished privilege to open the discussion in this Conference on the League of Nations. We have assembled for two purposes—to make the present settlements which have been rendered necessary by this War, and also to secure the Peace of the world not only by the present settlements but by the arrangements we shall make in this Conference for its maintenance. The League of Nations seems to me to be necessary for both of these purposes. There are many complicated questions connected with the present settlements which, perhaps, cannot be successfully worked out to an ultimate issue by the decisions we shall arrive at here. I can easily conceive that many of these settlements will need subsequent re-consideration; that many of the decisions we shall make will need subsequent alteration in some degree, for if I may judge by my own study of some of these questions they are not susceptible of confident judgments at present.
"It is, therefore, necessary that we should set up some machinery by which the work of this Conference should be rendered complete. We have assembled here for the purpose of doing very much more than making the present settlement. We are assembled under very peculiar conditions of world opinion. I may say without straining the point that we are not representatives of Governments, but representatives of peoples. It will not suffice to satisfy Governmental circles anywhere. It is necessary that we should satisfy the opinion of mankind. The burdens of this War have fallen in an unusual degree upon the whole population of the countries involved. I do not need to draw for you the picture of how the burden has been thrown back from the front upon the older men, upon the women, upon the children, upon the homes of the civilized world, and how the real strain of the War has come where the eye of Government could not reach, but where the heart of humanity beats. We are bidden by these people to make a peace which will make them secure. We are bidden by these people to see to it that this strain does not come upon them again, and I venture to say that it has been possible for them to bear this strain because they hope that those who represented them could get together after this war, and make such another sacrifice necessary.
"It is a solemn obligation on our part, therefore, to make permanent arrangements that justice shall be rendered and peace maintained. This is the central object of our meeting. Settlements may be temporary, but the actions of the nations in the interests of peace and justice must be permanent. We can set up permanent processes. We may not be able to set up permanent decisions, and therefore, it seems to me that we must take, so far as we can, a picture of the world into our minds. Is it not a startling circumstance for one thing that the great discoveries of science, that the quiet study of men in laboratories, that the thoughtful developments which have taken place in quiet lecture-rooms, have now been turned to the destruction of civilization? The powers of destruction have not so much multiplied as gained facility. The enemy whom we have just overcome had at its seats of learning some of the principal centres of scientific study and discovery, and used them in order to make destruction sudden and complete; and only the watchful, continuous co-operation of men can see to it that science, as well as armed men, is kept within the harness of civilization.
"In a sense, the United States is less interested in this subject than the other nations here assembled. With her great territory and her extensive sea borders, it is less likely that the United States should suffer from the attack of enemies than that many of the other nations here should suffer; and the ardor of the United States,— for it is a very deep and genuine ardor—for the Society of Nations is not an ardor springing out of fear and apprehension, but an ardor springing out of the ideals which have come to consciousness in the War. In coming into this war the United States never thought for a moment that she was intervening in the politics of Europe, or the politics of Asia, or the politics of any part of the world. Her thought was that all the world had now become conscious that there was a single cause which turned upon the issues of this war. That was the cause of justice and liberty for men of every kind and place. Therefore, the United States would feel that her part in thjs war had been played in vain if there ensued upon it merely a body of European settlements. She would feel that she could not take part in guaranteeing those European settlements unless that guarantee involved the continuous superintendence of the peace of the world by the Associated Nations of the World.
"Therefore, it seems to me that we must concert our best judgment in order to make this League of Nations a vital thing—not merely a formal thing, not an occasional thing, not a thing sometimes called into life to meet an exigency, but alwavs functioning in watchful attendance upon the interests of the Nations, and that its continuity should be a vital continuity;, that it should have functions that are continuing functions and that do not permit an intermission of its watchfulness and of its labor; that it should