League of Nations  

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Kunstformen der Natur (1904) by Ernst Haeckel
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Kunstformen der Natur (1904) by Ernst Haeckel

The League of Nations was an international organization founded as a result of the Treaty of Versailles in 1919–1920. At its greatest extent from 28 September 1934 to the 23 February 1935, it had 58 members. The League's goals included disarmament, preventing war through collective security, settling disputes between countries through negotiation, diplomacy and improving global quality of life. The diplomatic philosophy behind the League represented a fundamental shift in thought from the preceding hundred years. The League lacked its own armed force and so depended on the Great Powers to enforce its resolutions, keep to economic sanctions which the League ordered, or provide an army, when needed, for the League to use. However, they were often reluctant to do so. Sanctions could also hurt the League members imposing the sanctions and given the pacifist attitude following World War I, countries were reluctant to take military action. Benito Mussolini stated that "The League is very well when sparrows shout, but no good at all when eagles fall out."

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