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The GuardiansThe League of Nations and the Crisis of Empire$
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Susan Pedersen

Print publication date: 2015

Print ISBN-13: 9780199570485

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: June 2015

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199570485.001.0001

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Preface: Enter the Germans

Preface: Enter the Germans

(p.194) (p.195) Preface: Enter the Germans
The Guardians

Susan Pedersen

Oxford University Press

In the early 1920s, the mandates system worked largely to reconcile Anglo-French interests, legitimate the Versailles settlement, and uphold Lugardian ideals. Matters changed in 1926 when Germany entered the League following the Locarno accords. Many German colonial revisionists hoped that Germany's colonies could now be returned; Gustav Stresemann knew this was impossible but demanded a German seat on the Mandates Commission. Ludwig Kastl, an economic expert, was appointed and pressed forward ‘internationalization’. Germany concluded that if it could not regain its colonies, territorial control should matter less for the imperial powers as well. From 1927 until 1933, Germany thus battled attempts by mandatory powers to claim sovereignty, while working to expand its own economic access to territories under League oversight. New definitions of statehood and new international norms emerged in this period.

Keywords:   Gustav Stresemann, Kastl, Locarno, German colonial claims, Mandates Commission, revisionism, statehood, international norms

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