PASSES IN REVIEW
World Troubles Face 1933 Conferences
By MILTON BRONNER
European Manager, NEA Service
The fourth year in an era of
world-wide depression and unrest,
1933 dawns as a year of tremendous
potentialities in world history in w hich
economic considerations will dictate
the political courses of nations.
Four major events, three of w hich
are designed to aid in economic recov
ery. art? on the calendar.. 1'hey are:
World Economic anil Monetary
Conference, due to be held in London.
Statesmen from many nations will
discuss the stabilization of exchange,
the lowering of trade barriers and
other mutual attempts to bring about
Disarmament Conference, by rep
resentative of 60 nations meeting un
der League of Nations auspices at
Geneva. Though last summer s ses
sions proved barren of real results,
higher hopes are held now in view of
suggestions for trading arms reduc
tion for war debt revision or other
War Debt Revision < onferences,
probably to be held at Washington.
General economic conditions, plus
Germany’s refusal to pay any more
reparations, have led many to believe
that the United States must reduce
war debts owed by European nations
as a step toward world recovery.
League of Nations on Trial, as the
result of Japan's defiance by its
seizure of f ihnese Manchuria and es
tablishment of the dummy “republic”
of Manchoukuo there. Whether the
league can compel observance of
solemn treaties is the issue.
Economic, disarmament and war
debt conferences doubtless will not
be held until after President-Elect
Roosevelt takes office, since bis poli
cies will govern the United States’
course with regard to each.
A resume of important world news
in 1932, including many develop
ments which led up to this program
for 1933, follows.
JAPAN and CHINA
Determined to smash a eostly Chi
nese boycott resulting from Japan's
oonquests in Manchuria (which start
ed in September, 1931) the Japanese
began bombardment of Shanghai on
Jan. 28, in defiance of world opinion.
Weeks of fierce fighting were ended
by a truce on May 4. which promised
abandonment of the boycott.
Japanese military leaders on Feb.
28 set up the dummy ••republic-’ of
Manchoukuo in China’s richest agri
cultural and mineral area. On Sept.
29. Japan formally recognized Man
choukuo as an •‘independent repub
lic.” No other nation has done so.
Alter months of investigation a
League of Nation committee, headed
by Lord Lytton of England, returned a
report indicting Japan for aggression,
recommended it disgorge Manchou
kuo. Japan, claiming the invasion
wa- defensive move, threatens to
resign from the league.
Highspots of the world s historic news df 1932
Japanese militarists are in com
plete control, a series of assassinations
of their political enemies having re
duced the government to a mere tool
of the army.
With the pound at lowest levels
in modern history, trade at low ebb,
unemployment widespread, the dole a
staggering burden and trouble at
home and abroad, the British empire
experienced a trying 1932. Neverthe
less, it paid its $95,000,000 war debt
installment to the United States on
In February, Eamonn de Valera
won the Irish Free State presidency
on a platform opposed to oath of al
legiance to the crown and favoring
retention of 110,000,000 Irish land
rentals paid yearly to English land
lords. When Ireland withheld an
nuities. England retaliated with a 20
per cent import duty.
On April 5. a mob of 10,000 job
less rioted in St. John's, Newfound
land, and damaged government build
ings. On Oct. 12, 10,000 rioted in
Belfast, looting food stores. On Nov.
1, 20,000 “hunger marchers" battled
London police in a futile effort to en
ter the House of Commons. On Nov.
7. a royal commission recommended
continuance of the dole and upheld
the “means test”.
During the year an Australian
state attempted to default on its debts
and was prevented by the common
wealth. which seized its revenues.
Recently, trouble flared in Persia over
attempts to cancel British oil leases.
On Feb. 29, Britain abandoned
its 80-year-old policy of free trade. In
July. Dominion representatives met at
Ottawa and erected a preferential
tariff wall around the empire.
Gandhi continued his passive free
Horn movement, fn April, it was es
timated 50,000 Indian nationalists
had been jailed. In August, Britain
attempted to force acceptance of its
soluition for apportioning the ballot,
denying certain rights to India's 60,
000,000 “untouchables." Gandhi
emerged as their champion and. in
September, smashed this arrangement
with* a six-day “hunger strike.” Bri
tain, fearing to let Gandhi die, capi
The most significant development
in Germany in 1032 was that na
tion’s plainly manifested determina
tion to throw off the crushing limita
tions imposed in the Versailles Treaty.
The year brought many elections
and political turmoil, but all factions
are agreed on two things: Germany
will never resume reparations pay
ments (practically canceled by the
tentative Lausanne agreement); Ger
many, now restricted to a tiny army,
will demand arms equality with other
European nations and. if it fails to get
this permission, will re-arm anyway.
Significant was the decline of
Hitler and the rise of General von
Schleicher, the new chancellor, to
a position of absolute power under
the aged President von Hindenburg.
Whatever immediate hopes the
monarchists had for regaining the
throne apparently faded with the
downfall of Vnn Papon, though Ger
many now seems willing to let the ex
kaiser return as a private citizen.
Outstanding among world events
was France’s default on a $20,000,000
war debt payment due the I'nited
States Dec. 15. Premier Herriot
urged payment and was overthrown,
the nation apparently being angered
by President Hoover’s one-year mora
torium which halted German rep
arations payments to France—per
haps never to be resumed.
On May ti. President Paul Dou
nier, 75. was assassinated by Paul
Gorgulnff. demented Russian, later
guillotined. Four days later Albert
Li’Brun. president of the senate, was
elected president. Aristide Briand,
11 times premier, died.
On Oct. 23, Mussolini's Fascists
celebrated the loth anniversary of
his dictatorship with a great demon
stration in Rome.
Shortly after the Lausanne confer
ence—which failed to wipe the slate
clean of inter-allied war debts, ac
cording to his wishes—Mussolini fired
five cabinet ministers. Beginning in
January, Mussolini continued to sug
gest general war debt cancellation in
Europe and presentation of a united
debt cancellation front to the United
States. Italy paid its Dec. 15 war
debt installment to Washington.
On April 2. Stalin, ex-bomb throw
er now boss of Russia’s many millions,
observed his 10th anniversary as gen
eral secretary of the Communist party.
On Nov. 15,th 15th anniversary of the
revolution was celebrated as thou
sands of Red soldiers paraded past
Lenin's tomb in Moscow ’s Red Square.
The year marks the close of Rus
sia’s “five-year plan,’’ which, although
it has fallen short in many lines, has
laid the framew ork of a socialist order.
Indicative was the dedication of
the great Dnieprostroy dam on Oct.
10. Built by American engineers, it is
the largest power project in the world
and eventualy will supply electricity
to an area of 70,000 square miles with
a population of 70,000,000. Despite
industrial progress, living conditions
in Russia grew worse.
The Spanish republic continued
the steady progress it has been mak
ing since King Alfonso was over
thrown in 1931. Outstanding achieve
ments have included one of the most
liberal constitutions in the world ami
sweeping land laws that split up vast
In August. General Jose Sanjurjo
attempted an unsanctioned monarchist
revolt. President Zamora commuted 1
Sanjurjo’s death sentence.
Economic conditions In South
American republics started off in
1932 with default of $800,000,000 in
bonds owned by United States inves
tors. and grew worse as the year ad
Revolutions, mostly arising from
economic depression, flared in many
countries. The most serious was in
Brazil, continuing from early July
until October, closing the great cof
fee port of Santos. Chile, for 99 years
a democratic republic, went socialistic
after a bloodless revolt in June and
since has had six revolt government*.
Though no formal declaration of
war has been made. Bolivia and Para
guay have been fighting since July
in the swampy Gran Chaco. Casual
ties are estimated up to ."huh*.
General Abelardo Rodriguez*
right arm of the aging General Calles,
was chosen president to succeed Ortiz
Rubio, resigned. Rodriguez. 41. has
continued breaking up big estates for
peasant lands and the long strife be
tween Mexico government and the
Catholic church over laws restricting
religion. Recently, the apostolic dele
gate to Mexico was deported. 1
On April 5,—Finland—only dry
country except the United States—;
rejected prohibition after 12 years.
On June 24, one of the world’s
last absolute monarchies passed when
King Prajadhipok fell victim to a
popular revolt which set up a consti
tutional monarchy and granted the
people the right to vote.
Born in 1032 (in addition to the
puppet Manchoukuo) was a new na
tion—the tiny kingdom of Irak, bor
dering Persia. It came into being on
petition of Great Britain to the Lea
gue of Nations, and amid a strong odor
of British oil concessions. King
Fiesal. successor to the one mighty
caliphs of Bagdad, traces his ances
try to Fatima, only daughter of Ma
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