United States History
THE LEAGUE OF NATIONS
Source: United States Information Agency
In the end, there was little left of Wilson's proposals for a generous and lasting peace but the League itself -- and the president had to endure the final irony of seeing his own country spurn League membership. Partly due to his own poor judgment at the time, Wilson made the political mistake of failing to take a leading member of the opposition Republican Party to Paris on his Peace Commission. When he returned to appeal for American adherence to the League, he refused to make even the moderate concessions necessary to win ratification from a predominately Republican Senate.
Having lost in Washington, Wilson carried his case to the people on a tour throughout the country. On September 25, 1919, physically ravaged by the rigors of peacemaking and the pressures of the wartime presidency, he suffered a crippling stroke at Pueblo, Colorado, from which he never fully recovered. In March 1920, the Senate rejected both the Versailles Treaty and the League Covenant. As a result, the League of Nations, without the presence of the United States or Russia, remained a weak organization.
Wilson's belief in a moral and legal basis for war and peace had inspired the nation. However, when events didn't live up to this optimistic standard, Wilsonian idealism gave way to disillusion, and the nation withdrew into isolationism.
NOTE: The information regarding the United States on this page is re-published from United States Information Agency. No claims are made regarding the accuracy of United States History information contained here. All suggestions for corrections of any errors about American History should be addressed to the United States Information Agency