International relations in Europe: 1923-1932. The Locarno Conference

International relations in Europe: 1923-1932. The Locarno Conference

Авторы: Васильева Наталья Юрьевна, Клейменова Надежда Евгеньевна, Сидоров Андрей Юрьевич
Kleimenova N.E. International Relations in Europe: 1923-1932. The Locarno Conference / Nadezhda E. Kleimenova, Andrei Yu. Sidorov, Natalia Yu. Vasilieva // History of International Relations and Russian Foreign Policy in the 20th Century (Volume I). — Cambridge Scholars Publishing, 2020. — P. 106-134.

In late 1922, the German authorities decided against making an annual reparations payment. In retaliation, French and Belgian troops invaded the Ruhr area in January 1923. Two expert committees were established in October 1923 to decide on Germany’s capacity to pay. The Dawes Plan aimed to stabilise Germany as an economically and politically thriving nation within the framework of the Versailles system. Following the Ruhr crisis, the UK took the reform of the Versailles order in hand. The country brought forward a proposal to incorporate Germany into the League of Nations. In fact, the Locarno Conference created a double standard beneficial to Germany, as it divided European borders into two categories: western, guaranteed by the Locarno Treaties, and eastern, which were open to revision. Though the Dawes Plan and the Locarno Treaties resolved the acute political crisis of the Versailles system, the practical failure of Kellogg-Briand’s pact demonstrated that the process of integration of European states was hardly possible under its terms.


The “recognition streak” strengthened the positions of the USSR on the global stage. The Soviet authorities still considered the League of Nations “an instrument of imperialism” and the largest international centre for building an anti-Soviet bloc, though Moscow deemed it possible to collaborate with Geneva on certain “practical” issues. The priority of Soviet foreign policy became ensuring the safety of the Soviet state by reducing confrontation with the West. The struggle for a world revolution was put on the back burner. The pacts signed by the Soviet Union with neighbouring European states and France were of major political significance.

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