Armaan Ali

November 4, 2010

Mandate Systems


· 1917- Japan demanded the right to annex Germany’s colonies north of the Equator

  (Secretly approved by the British Government)
  (Came to fruition when they received their Class-C mandates)

· October 1918-Wilson’s 14 points

· 1919-Paris Peace settlements take place where Wilson’s points are discussed Wilson insisted that his points be followed. (National self determination)

  (Jan Smuts of South Africa presented an alternative that was a compromise 
   between the two, and that was accepted by the Allied statesmen.)

· April 1919- League of nations is established

· May 1919- Mandates were allocated to countries and mandated teritories were separated into 3 groups:

· 1920- Treaty of Sevres dealt with the Turkish Empire, stripping them of their territories in the Middle East

· 1921- Britain created the state of Transjordan

  (Violent Arab protests occurred in 1920 and 1921)

· 1923-Britain recognized Transjordan as an independent state

  (Full independence in 1946 as the nation of Saudi Arabia)

· 1930-Britain signs Anglo-Iraqi Treaty with King Feisel.

  (25 Year Military Alliance)

· 1932-Britain ended mandate in Iraq

· 1936-Drafted treaties with both Syria and Lebanon, granting them independence with the provisons that France would be consulted in the formulation of foreign policy

  (France would retain a military Base)

· 1946-French Chamber refused to ratify the treaties

· 1946- United Nations is created

· 1947-Britain referred the problem of Palestine to the UN

· November 1947 Israel is created and given independence.

· 1948- When Britain pulled out of Palestine, war erupted between the new state of Israel and Palestine

  (Arab-Israeli war) 


· The League of Nations made arrangements for the former colonies of Germany and the provinces detached from the Turkish Empire.

o Allotted to various states under ‘Mandates’ which made the country that the state was allotted to, responsible for:'

'Good government of the territory under its administration to a special Mandates Commission of the League'

-This Agreement was only reached after considerable disagreement among allied leaders.

o Some British dominions wanted to annex'

· Woodrow Wilson insisted that his Fourteen points be adhered to

o No Turkish or German Colony should be annexed by another country

o Jan Smuts of South Africa presented an alternative that was a compromise between the two, and that was accepted by the Allied statesmen.'

· Mandates were allocated to particular countries in May 1919'

· Countries that were allocated mandates had to report to the League of Nations every year

o However, mandates commission had limited power and could not ask for oral evidence as opposed to written evidence(Relating to the conduct of the powers granted the mandates)


Most developed countries

o Britain responsible for :

Mesopotamia (Iraq)


o France responsible for:


--Later divided into Syria and Lebanon


Former German colonies of East Africa. Togoland and the Cameroons were given ‘Trusteeship’ Status. Countries that were responsible for the mandated territories were given certain regulations designed to safeguard the rights of that mandate’s native people.

a. France responsible for:

Togoland and the Cameroons

--Independence in 1960

b. Britain responsible for:


--Independence was gained in 1961

c. Belgium responsible for:

Rwanda Burundi

--Independence in 1962


Remaining former German territories are in group C due to:

o Sparseness of population, development, size and other circumstances were administered as ‘integral portions or the territory of the mandatory power.(Virtual annexation)

i.      South West Africa (Namibia allocated to south Africa)

ii.      New Guinea (Allocated to Australia)

iii.      Western Samoa (Now Samoa)-Allocated to New Zealand

iv.      Islands north of the Equator in the western Pacific-Allocated to Japan

Maximum 500 word essay:

The mandate system appeared to be an effective method of reinstating the smaller states into the world of politics and economic races; and it did work for the majority of the states. However, there were many issues that have had repercussions that can be seen today. The Palestine conflict is just one example of this. The lack of enforcement of the League upon the regent states and the League’s inability to resolve issues caused long lasting repercussions.

The mandate system originally stemmed from two basic principles; one of National Self-Determination, and the other from individual territories that believed that they should be given independence. During the Peace conference a South African representative, Jan Smuts, presented a fair compromise between the two ideas. This created the three levels of mandated territories. They were separated into classes based on their level of development, both economical and infrastructural. The Class-C mandates, were countries that had the sparsest population, high economic instability, and a number of other factors that inhibited them being politically, and economically competitive. The Class-B mandates, were located in East Africa, and were fairly self-sufficient. The countries that were given the responsibility for the mandated territories, were given trusteeship status, and were given the task of implementing and enforcing regulations regarding the protection of the native peoples. The Class-A mandates were the highest in terms of development, and independence. France and Britain were given responsibility for the Class-A mandates. These states, located in the Middle East, gained their independences by signing treaties and agreements with the countries that had been given responsibility over them. Palestine was included in this class, and it later divided into two states: Israel and Palestine.

When the Mandated territories were given to their countries that were to be in charge of them, there was an understanding that there would be an “impartial adjustment of all colonial claims”. This concept was taken from Wilson’s 14 points. However, this concept was neither followed nor enforced. This was clearly seen in 1930, when the Anglo-Iraqi treaty was signed, as this was not impartial at all. In the treaty there was an understanding that Iraq would be allied militarily with Britain for the next 25 years, in ‘exchange’ for their independence. Britain was not subjected to any repercussions. Although it may seem as though the League of Nations lacked impartiality in this situation, it must be noted, that they were limited in the ways in which they could interfere with the way the mandated states would be run. They were given one report annually on the mandates states from the governing body. They could not demand or request an oral presentation on what was happening either. Therefore the current issues surrounding the previously Class-A mandated states, can be attributed to the lack of ability for the League to enforce and adjudicate over