These blogs are written by the librarians of the Peace Palace Library. All blogs are dealing with subjects on International Law. Every blog contains links and references to the collection of the Peace Palace Library.
Wilson’s Fourteen Points had helped win the hearts and minds of many as the war ended; these included Americans and Europeans generally, as well as Germany, its allies and the former subjects of the Ottoman Empire specifically. Wilson felt it was his duty and obligation to the people of the world to be a prominent figure at the peace negotiations. High hopes and expectations were placed on him to deliver what he had promised for the post-war era. In doing so, Wilson ultimately began to lead the foreign policy of the United States toward interventionism, a move strongly resisted in some domestic circles.Read more
During the Paris Peace Conference and for the most of the period after 1919, the aims, interests, and policies of Britain differed fundamentally from those of France. Neither of the two countries was able to pursue unhampered the course it laid out for itself. Great Britain had suffered huge casualties but little land devastation during the war. However, the British wartime coalition was re-elected at the end of 1918, with a policy of squeezing the German “’til the pips squeak”. Public opinion favoured a “just peace”, which would force Germany to pay reparations and be unable to repeat the aggression of 1914, although those of a “liberal and advanced opinion” shared Wilson’s ideal of a peace of reconciliation.Read more
What war aims did the French have during World War I and how did they negotiate the treaties that ended this war? In 1917 the Comité d’études was created by Aristide Briand to assist the French Government in formulating these aims. The work of this Comité resulted in an impressive report of around 1500 pages: maps, statistics, tracing the borders of the Alsace, the Saar Region, Lorraine, Luxembourg, Central and Eastern Europe, the Balkans, etc. At the Paris Peace Conference, the French Prime Minister, Georges Clemenceau, controlled his delegation and his chief goal was to weaken Germany militarily, strategically and economically.Read more
This year is the Centennial of the signing of the Treaty of Versailles. Signed on 28 June 1919 in the Hall of Mirrors at Versailles Palace, the Treaty was the most important of the peace treaties that brought an end to World War I. To mark this anniversary, the Peace Palace Library has put together a collection of books exploring the background and aftermath of the Versailles Treaty. This collection will be published on the website and social media.Read more
The process of cooperation in Europe, which started in the aftermath of World War II, has resulted in the emergence of an unprecedented political construction on the old continent. Initially, the debate about the nature of the European Communities and their successor the European Union, was dominated by the dilemma as to whether the integration should lead to the creation of a federal state, to be described as the United States of Europe, or to the establishment of a Europe of Nation-States, proudly portrayed by President de Gaulle as ‘l’Europe des Patries. After decades of deadlock, the 2007 Lisbon Treaty overcame the conceptual stalemate by constructing the EU as a democracy without turning the Union into a state.Read more
Commemorations of the Allied D-Day landings have begun in Europe, where veterans of the invasion are gathering along with world leaders to mark the 75th anniversary of the operation to liberate France. D-Day started shortly after midnight June 6th, 1944 with an extensive air and naval bombardment and an airborne assault on the French coast. 24.000 British, Canadian and American paratroopers were dropped behind the 80 kilometer wide beach zone and seized key objectives such as bridges and road crossings.Read more
The 23rd and the 24th of May, the semi-finals of the Telders International Law Moot Court Competition will be held at the Grotius Centre for International Legal Studies, Leiden University Campus The Hague. And on the 25th of May, the final will be held in the Great Hall of Justice at the Peace Palace. But who was this Mr. Telders? And why is there a Moot Court Competition in his memory?Read more
Major events in history tend to bring about or further major innovations in technology. The announcement of the then Prime Minister of the UK, David Cameron, in January 2013 that he wanted to organise an in- or out-referendum about British membership of the EU triggered the present author to start a series of blogs about Brexit on the website of this library. Blogs form a challenge for traditional academics inasmuch as they have to be short and sharp. The effect of the blog will be highlighted by the punch line in which it culminates. A blog, which solves an age-old conundrum, may turn out to be a greater leap forward in academic advancement than many contemplative books have been.Read more
Today is the set date in the Withdrawal Agreement with the European Union, the United Kingdom is allowed formally to leave the European Union (Brexit).
However, the British Parliament (House of Commons) has to give her approval to Theresa May’s deal. The British Prime minister has even offered to resign, if the House of Commons would vote for her deal. Nevertheless, the House of Commons has shown many ‘NO’ ‘s even to options discussed and proposed within the Parliament.Read more
At the time it was being built, many people were dissatisfied with the design for the Peace Palace exterior by Louis Cordonnier; he designed a Renaissance building with gothic elements, made out of brick and natural stone with sculptured ornamentation such as pilasters and friezes. The public felt the traditional design-aesthetic harked back to old ways of thinking, which had led to war, rather than being a visual representation of the hope for a modern, peaceful society. Herman Rosse was able to bridge the gap between past and present in his style of design for the interiors of the building. But where did he get his inspiration to bring the Peace Palace into the twentieth century?Read more