Britain, Soviet Russia and the Collapse of the Versailles Order, 1919–1939

by Keith Neilson

A major re-interpretation of international relations in the period from 1919 to 1939. Avoiding such simplistic explanations as appeasement and British decline, Keith Neilson demonstrates that the underlying cause of the Second World War was the intellectual failure to find an effective means of maintaining the new world order created in 1919. With secret diplomacy, alliances and the balance of power seen as having caused the First World War, the makers of British policy after 1919 were forced to rely on such instruments of liberal internationalism as arms control, the League of Nations and global public opinion to preserve peace. Using Britain's relations with Soviet Russia as a focus for a re-examination of Britain's dealings with Germany and Japan, this book shows that these tools were inadequate to deal with the physical and ideological threats posed by Bolshevism, fascism, Nazism and Japanese militarism.

  • Cambridge University Press; December 2005
  • ISBN: 9780511145087
  • Read online, or download in secure PDF format
  • Title: Britain, Soviet Russia and the Collapse of the Versailles Order, 1919–1939
  • Author: Keith Neilson
  • Imprint: Cambridge University Press

In The Press

"This elegantly written and tightly organized study combines particular and general concerns in an interesting way...Neilson has produced a thoughtful and perceptive study that will be read with profit by those interested in international relations as well as by diplomatic historians."
Martin Ceadel, American Historical Review