Option B The 20th century: International Relations since 1919

1 Were the peace treaties of 1919–23 fair?
2 To what extent was the League of Nations a success?
3 Why had international peace collapsed by 1939?
4 Who was to blame for the Cold War?
5 How effectively did the USA contain the spread of Communism?
6 How secure was the USSR’s control over Eastern Europe, 1948–c.1989?
7 How effective has the United Nations Organisation been?

**1 Were the peace treaties of 1919–23 fair?**
Focus Points
• What were the motives and aims of the Big Three at Versailles?
-Why did all the victors not get everything they wanted?
• What was the impact of the peace treaty on Germany up to 1923?
• Could the treaties be justified at the time?

**2 To what extent was the League of Nations a success?**
Focus Points
• How successful was the League in the 1920s?
• How far did weaknesses in the League’s organisation make failure inevitable?
• How far did the Depression make the work of the League more difficult?
• How successful was the League in the 1930s?

**3 Why had international peace collapsed by 1939?**
Focus Points
• What were the long-term consequences of the peace treaties of 1919–23?
• What were the consequences of the failures of the League in the 1930s?
• How far was Hitler’s foreign policy to blame for the outbreak of war in 1939?
• Was the policy of appeasement justified?
• How important was the Nazi-Soviet Pact?
• Why did Britain and France declare war on Germany in September 1939?


4 Who was to blame for the Cold War?
Focus Points
• Why did the USA-USSR alliance begin to break down in 1945?
• How had the USSR gained control of Eastern Europe by 1948?
• How did the USA react to Soviet expansionism?
• What were the consequences of the Berlin Blockade?
• Who was the more to blame for starting the Cold War: the USA or the USSR?

5 How effectively did the USA contain the spread of Communism?
Focus Points
This Key Question will be explored through case studies of the following:
• America and events in Cuba, 1959–62
• American involvement in Vietnam.

6 How secure was the USSR’s control over Eastern Europe,
1948–c.1989?
Focus Points
• Why was there opposition to Soviet control in Hungary in 1956 and Czechoslovakia in 1968, and how
did the USSR react to this opposition?
• How similar were events in Hungary in 1956 and in Czechoslovakia in 1968?
• Why was the Berlin Wall built in 1961?
• What was the significance of ‘Solidarity’ in Poland for the decline of Soviet influence in Eastern
Europe?
• How far was Gorbachev personally responsible for the collapse of Soviet control over Eastern
Europe?

7 How effective has the United Nations Organisation been?
Focus Points
• What are the functions of the UNO?
• How far has the organisation of the UNO hindered its effectiveness?
• Case studies of the UNO in action: the Korean War and the Congo.