Kellogg-Briand Pact of 1928

Kellogg-Briand Pact

Kellogg-Briand Pact (brēäN´), agreement, signed Aug. 27, 1928, condemning "recourse to war for the solution of international controversies." It is more properly known as the Pact of Paris. In June, 1927, Aristide Briand, foreign minister of France, proposed to the U.S. government a treaty outlawing war between the two countries. Frank B. Kellogg, the U.S. secretary of state, returned a proposal for a general pact against war, and after prolonged negotiations the Pact of Paris was signed by 15 nations—Australia, Belgium, Canada, Czechoslovakia, France, Germany, Great Britain, India, the Irish Free State, Italy, Japan, New Zealand, Poland, South Africa, and the United States. The contracting parties agreed that settlement of all conflicts, no matter of what origin or nature, that might arise among them should be sought only by pacific means and that war was to be renounced as an instrument of national policy.

Although 62 nations signed, its effectiveness was vitiated by its failure to provide measures of enforcement. The Kellogg-Briand Pact was given an unenthusiastic reception by many countries. The U.S. Senate, ratifying the treaty with only one dissenting vote, still insisted that there must be no curtailment of America's right of self-defense and that the United States was not compelled to take action against countries that broke the treaty. The pact never made a meaningful contribution to international order, although it was invoked in 1929 with some success, when China and the USSR reached a tense moment over possession of the Chinese Eastern RR in Manchuria. Ultimately, however, the pact proved to be meaningless, especially with the practice of waging undeclared wars in the 1930s (e.g., the Japanese invasion of Manchuria in 1931, the Italian invasion of Ethiopia in 1935, and the German occupation of Austria in 1938). Nonetheless, the pact remains in force; 67 nations currently are signatories.

See R. H. Ferrell, Peace in Their Time (1952, repr. 1968); O. A. Hathaway and S. J. Shapiro, The Internationalists (2017).

The Columbia Encyclopedia, 6th ed. Copyright© 2018, The Columbia University Press.

Kellogg-Briand Pact of 1928: Selected full-text books and articles

Documents and Readings in the History of Europe since 1918 By James Michael Eagan; Walter Consuelo Langsam J.B. Lippincott Company, 1939
Librarian's tip: The text of the pact begins on p. 220
A primary source is a work that is being studied, or that provides first-hand or direct evidence on a topic. Common types of primary sources include works of literature, historical documents, original philosophical writings, and religious texts.
International Law and the Use of Force by States By Ian Brownlie Clarendon Press, 1963
Librarian's tip: "The Covenant of the League of Nations, the Kellogg-Briand Pact, and Problems of Transition" begins on p. 217
The American Secretaries of State and Their Diplomacy By Robert H.Ferrell; Samuel Flagg Bemis Cooper Square Publishers, vol.11, 1963
Librarian's tip: Chap. Five "The Kellogg-Briand Pact of Paris"
The Right of Conquest: The Acquisition of Territory by Force in International Law and Practice By Sharon Korman Clarendon Press, 1996
Librarian's tip: "The Kellogg--Briand Pact, 1928" begins on p. 192
International Government By Edmund C. Mower D. C. Heath and Company, 1931
Librarian's tip: "The Peace Pact of Paris" begins on p. 587
The Outlawry of War: A Series of Lectures Delivered before the Academy of International Law at the Hague and in the Institut Universitaire de Hautes Aetudes Internationales at Geneva By Hans W. Wehberg; Edwin H. Zeydel Carnegie Endowment for International Peace, 1931
Librarian's tip: "The Kellogg Plan for a World Peace Pact" begins on p. 63
War, Aggression, and Self-Defense By Yoram Dinstein Cambridge University Press, 2001 (3rd edition)
Librarian's tip: Chap. 4 "The Contemporary Prohibition of the Use of Inter-State Force"
Toward an Entangling Alliance: American Isolationism, Internationalism, and Europe, 1901-1950 By Ronald E. Powaski Greenwood Press, 1991
Librarian's tip: "The Kellogg-Briand Pact" begins on p. 47
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