Born Friday 23 November 1860, died Tuesday 24 February 1925
We must remember that the people for whom this change represents a first taste of freedom and a new and brighter future did not allow their resolution to falter, no matter how great the suffering by which they bought this independence.
We here in the North have for many years had a natural tendency to feel that when our representatives come together at an international meeting, we embark on the quest of mutual understanding and support.
There is no reason why agreement on particular points should not be both possible and advantageous to the so-called neutrals and to one or more of the blocs, either existing or in the process of formation, within the League of Nations.
Let us return, however, to the League of Nations. To create an organization which is in a position to protect peace in this world of conflicting interests and egotistic wills is a frighteningly difficult task.
Last year, the Assembly of the League, as a result of the initiative taken by the Scandinavian nations, further limited and clarified all the provisions of the clause prescribing the duty of states to participate in sanctions.
I do not overlook the fact that the appearance of these new, free nations in the European political community not only celebrates the return of the prodigal son but also creates new sources of friction here and there.
Before the war there were many who were more or less ignorant of the international labor movement but who nevertheless turned to it for salvation when the threat of war arose. They hoped that the workers would never permit a war.
As a result of the World War and of a peace whose imperfections and risks are no longer denied by anyone, are we not even further away from the great aspirations and hopes for peace and fraternity than we were one or two decades ago?
And the annual meetings of the League's Assembly are in effect official peace congresses binding on the participating states to an extent that most statesmen a quarter of a century ago would have regarded as utopian.
A formally recognized equality does, however, accord the smaller nations a position which they should be able to use increasingly in the interest of humanity as a whole and in the service of the ideal.