What were the major points of Wilson's peace plan?

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jilllessa eNotes educator| Certified Educator

Wilson's plan for peace was presented as his "Fourteen Points" in a speech to Congress. It was designed to bring a lasting peace and end war in civilized lands. The major points of the plan included a call for nations to engage in "open covenants" with each other rather than secret alliances such as those that had catapulted a minor incident into a World War. Another major point was that the settlement between the victorious Allies and the Axis needed to be fair, establishing reasonable national boundaries and limiting reparations. Wilson felt that unfair land allotment and heavy or burdensome reparations would just lead to further resentment and hatred bringing about future wars. Unfortunately, history proved him right with World War II coming in less than thirty years. He also called for a general reduction in arms and armies among the civilized nations of the world. Finally, Wilson's plan also called for the creation of a "general association of nations" that would settle disputes and protect the nations of the world from unfair aggression. This League of Nations, as it would be called, was the centerpiece of Wilson's plan. Unfortunately, he could not get his own government to accept the plan and the United States did not join the League of Nations, severely limiting its power.

revolution | Student

Woodrow Wilson put forward a plan called the "Fourteen Points" as a basis for establishing lasting peace and prosperity after World War One in many countries. The main points of the peace plan was the usage of open covenants of peace, which there shall not be any "private international understandings of any kind", no secret or hidden alliances between countries that played a part in the war, as it brought a localised conflict into a global war. There should also be absolute freedom of navigation across the seas, in peace or in war. Removal of economical barriers and establishment of equality of trade conditions among all countries is enforced. He also encourages the reduction of arms amongst the world powers, reducing the chances of an arm race breaking out. Relocation of territories to former territories is emphasised to quell resentment and to supress riots among discontented countries. Also, "a general association of nations" must be formed after the war that would resolve international problems through negotiation, arms reduction and through the use of force against the aggressors as the last resort. The League of Nations was an expression of the world's hopes and determination to prevent another world war, and was the centrepiece of Wilson's ideals and plans to promote global peace and security. However, he could not get the votes from his own government as the US Senate supported the policy of isolationism, meaning that they did not want USA to become involved in another world affairs that require their young men to fight another war again. The abscence of this big power was a huge blow to the organisation, and severely weakened its credibility and structure, and power to control.