“If a strong government finds that it can, with impunity, destroy a weak people, then the hour has struck for that weak people to appeal to the League of Nations to give its judgment in all freedom. God and history will remember your judgment.”

–Haile Selassie

The League of Nations was established after the First World War, in 1920, with the aims of preventing any future conflict or war on earth through collective security and disarmament and selling disputes via economic sanctions, negotiations and arbitration. It was the first time that an International Court of Justice was made to hold all those responsible who had committed war crimes. Unlike the United Nations today, the League of Nations also had its own army that would step in if need be.

With the onset of the Second World War, it was becoming increasingly clear that the League was failing to meet its objective of preventing war. Its neutrality was seen as indecision by the global community due to the fact that it was extremely slow in coming to decisions that needed to be made immediately. Its failure can also be attributed towards the lack of representation because not all states joined the league. Specifically, the exclusion of the US from the league was a major source of weakness. Much of its incompetency was revealed after the Abyssinia crisis where France and Britain opposed together the ‘enemies of internal order’, Germany, and thus abandoned the concept of collective security. The League was abolished in 1947, and all its assets and functions were given to the UN.