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By Article 12 of the treaty between the Principal Allied and Associated Powers and the Serb-Croat-Slovene State, signed at the St. Germaine-en-Laye on 10 September 1919, the new Kingdom succeeded to all the old Serbian treaties, and later changed its name to Yugoslavia. The first two articles of this Hague Convention read:
"Article 1: With a view to obviating as far as possible recourse to force in the relations between states, the signatory powers agree to use their best efforts to insure the pacific settlement of International differences. “Article 2: In case of serious disagreement or conflict, before an appeal to arms the signatory powers agree to have recourse, as far as circumstances allow, to the good offices or mediation of one or more friendly powers.” (TC-1)
B. Convention for the Pacific Settlement of International Disputes, signed at the Hague on 18 October 1907.
This Convention (TC-2) was signed at the Hague by 44 nations, and it is in effect as to 31 nations, 28 signatories, and three adherents. For present purposes it is in force as to the United States, Belgium, Czechoslovakia, Denmark, France, Germany, Luxembourg, Japan, Netherlands, Norway, Poland, and Russia.
By the provisions of Article 91 it replaces the 1899 Convention as between the contracting powers. As Greece and Yugoslavia are parties to the 1899 convention and not to the 1907, the 1899 Convention is in effect with regard to them, and that explains the division of countries in Appendix C. The first article of this treaty reads:
"1: With a view to obviating as far as possible recourse to force in the relations between States, the contracting powers agree to use their best efforts to insure the pacific settlement of international differences.” (TC-2)
C. Convention Relative to the Opening of Hostilities, signed at the Hague on 18 October 1907.
This Convention (TC-3) applies to Germany, Poland, Norway, Denmark, Belgium, the Netherlands, Luxembourg, and Russia. It relates to a procedural step in notifying one's prospective opponent before opening hostilities against him. It appears to have had its immediate origin in the Russo-Japanese war of 1904, when Japan attacked Russia without any previous warning. It will be noted that it does not fix any particular lapse of time between the giving of notice and the commencement of
hostilities, but it does seek to maintain an absolutely minimum standard of International decency before the outbreak of war. The first article of this treaty reads:
"The contracting powers recognize that hostilities between them must not commence without a previous and explicit warning in the form of either a declaration of war, giving reasons, or an ultimatum with a conditional declaration of war." (TC-3)
D. Convention 5, Respecting the Rights and Duties of Neutral Powers and Persons in Case of War on Land, signed at the Hague on 18 October 1907.
Germany was an original signatory to this Convention (TC-4), and the treaty is in force as a result of ratification or adherence between Germany and Norway, Denmark, Belgium, Luxembourg, The Netherlands, the USSR, and the United States. Article 1 reads:
"The territory of neutral powers is inviolable.” (TC-4) A point arises on this Convention. Under Article 20, the provisions of the present Convention do not apply except between the contracting powers, and then only if all the belligerents are parties to the Convention.
As Great Britain and France entered the war within two days of the outbreak of the war between Germany and Poland, and one of these powers had not ratified the Convention, it is arguable that its provisions did not apply to the Second World War.
Since there are many more important treaties to be considered, the charge will not be pressed that this treaty was likewise breached. The terms of Article 1 are cited merely as showing the state of International opinion at the time, and as an element in the aggressive character of the war.
E. Treaty of Peace between the Allies and the Associated Powers of Germany, signed at Versailles on 28 June 1919.
Part I of this treaty (TC-5 thru TC-10) contains the Covenant of the League of Nations, and Part II sets the boundaries of Germany in Europe. These boundaries are described in detail. Part II makes no provision for guaranteeing these boundaries. Part III, Articles 31 to 117, contains the political clauses for Europe. In it, Germany guarantees certain territorial boundaries in Belgium, Luxembourg, Austria, Czechoslovakia, France, Poland, Memel, Danzig, etc.
This treaty is interwoven with the next, which is the Treaty
of Restoration of Friendly Relations between the United States and Germany. Parts I, II, and III of the Versailles Treaty are not included in the United States Treaty. Parts IV, V, VI, VIII, IX, X, XI, XII, XIV, and XV are all repeated verbatim in the United States Treaty from the Treaty of Versailles. This case is concerned with Part V, which are the military, naval, and air clauses. Parts VII and XIII are not included in the United States Treaty.
(1) Territorial Guarantees.
(a) The Rhineland. The first part with which this case is concerned is Articles 42 to 44 dealing with the Rhineland (TC-5). These are repeated in the Locarno Treaty. They read as follows:
"Article 42: Germany is forbidden to maintain or construct
peace of the world." (The speech by Hitler on 7 March 1936, giving his account of the breach of this treaty (2289-PS), is discussed in Section 2, supra.) (6) Austria. The next part of the Treaty deals with Austria:
“Article 80: Germany acknowledges and will respect strictly the independence of Austria within the frontiers which may be fixed in a treaty between that State and the principal Allied and Associated powers; she agrees that this independence shall be inalienable, except with the consent of the Council
of the League of Nations.” (TC-6) (The proclamation of Hitler dealing with Austria (TC-47), is discussed in Section 3 supra.)
(c) Memel. Germany also gave guarantee with respect to Memel :
“Germany renounces, in favor of the principal Allied and Associated powers, all rights and title over the territories included between the Baltic, the Northeastern frontier of 685964-464-43
East Prussia as defined in Article 28 of Part II (Boundaries of Germany) of the present treaty, and the former frontier between Germany and Russia. Germany undertakes to accept the settlement made by principal Allied and Associated powers in regard to these territories, particularly insofar
as concerns the nationality of inhabitants." (TC-8) The formal document by which Germany incorporated Memel into the Reich, reads as follows:
“The transfer Commissioner for the Memel territory, Gauleiter und Oberpraesident Erich Koch, effected on 3 April 1939, during a conference at Memel, the final incorporation of the late Memel territory into the National Socialist Party Gau of East Prussia and into the state administration of the East
Prussian Regierungsbezirk of Grunbinnen.” (TC-53-A) (d) Danzig. Article 100 of the treaty relates to Danzig:
“Germany renounces, in favor of the principal Allied and Associated Powers, all rights and title over the territory comprised within the following limits
(The limits are set out and are described in a German map attached to
the Treaty.) (TC-9) (e) Czechoslovakia. In Article 81, Germany made pledges regarding Czechoslovakia :
“Germany, in conformity with the action already taken by the Allied and Associated Powers, recognizes the complete independence of the Czechoslovak State, which will include the autonomous territory of the Ruthenians to the South of the Carpathians. Germany hereby recognizes the frontiers of this State as determined by the principal Allied and Asso
ciated Powers and other interested states." (TC-7) Captured minutes of the German Foreign Office record in detail the conference between Hitler and President Hacha, and Foreign Minister Chvalkowsky of Czechoslovakia, at which Goering and Keitel were present (2798-PS). The agreement subsequently signed by Hitler and Ribbentrop for Germany, and by Dr. Hacha and Dr. Chvalkowsky for Czechoslovakia, reads as follows:
“Text of the Agreement between the Fuehrer and Reichs
Czechoslovakia owing to the events of recent weeks, was subjected to a completely open examination. The conviction was unanimously expressed on both sides that the object of all their efforts must be to assure quiet, order and peace in this part of Central Europe. The President of the Czechoslovak State declared that, in order to serve this end and to reach a final pacification, he confidently placed the fate of the Czech people and of their country in the hands of the Fuehrer of the German Reich. The Fuehrer accepted this declaration and expressed his decision to assure to the Czech people, under the protection of the German Reich, the autonomous development of their national life in accordance with their special characteristics. In witness whereof this docu
ment is signed in duplicate." (TC- 49) Hitler's proclamation to the German people, dated 15 March 1939, reads as follows:
"Proclamation of the Fuehrer to the German people, 15