Richard Davis (auth.)'s Anglo-French Relations Before the Second World War: PDF

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To afford each other mutual support in applying the economic and financial measures to be taken . . They afford each other mutual support to resist any special measure directed against one of them by the state which has broken the Pact. League Covenant, Article 16(3) The confused and sometimes conflicting forces that determined British and French policies were all evident in the perceptions that each held of the other. These mutual considerations pervaded all corners of the foreign policy-making machinery of both countries.

Robert Vansittart, The Mist Procession, p. 522 If I have been so generous with Mussolini it is because I need the friendship of Italy to reach an agreement with the Germans. Pierre Laval, quoted in Henri Torres, Pierre Laval, p. 135 For British and French leaders the importance of the Ethiopian crisis, coming at a critical time in international affairs, lay in its repercussions beyond Africa ± in the Mediterranean, in Europe, and above all in their future relations with Germany. Not surprisingly, their thoughts turned as much towards Berlin as towards Rome, Addis Ababa or Geneva throughout the whole affair.

The result was to push the British Cabinet away from an out-and-out pro-Italian policy. The aim was to win the election, which called for a pro-League policy, without breaking the Stresa Front. How far this radically affected policy itself as opposed to merely its presentation remains debatable. Nevertheless the limits imposed by the pro-League lobby cannot be ignored. In France public opinion was far from unanimous and less directly expressed and as a consequence its influence was greatly reduced.

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