Primary Source

Excerpt from the Kellogg-Briand Pact, 1928

Annotation

Also known as the Pact of Paris, the Kellogg-Briand Pact of 1928 was an international agreement sponsored by the United States and France aimed to eliminate war as a means of conflict resolution on the international playing field following World War I. As the United States did not join the League of Nations, the Pact was an attempt to tie together another series of international alliances to prevent, in French foreign minister Aristide Briand’s eyes, a revival of aggression on the part of Germany. Despite almost all nations across the globe eventually signing the Kellogg-Briand Pact, signatories took many interpretations of exceptions to the agreement, such as wars of self-defense and other military obligations to political policies. This combined with the lack of enforcement methods in the treaty have led many see the Pact as largely ineffective relative to its intended scope. Despite its seeming ineffectiveness, however, the Kellogg-Briand Pact served as a legal basis for future prosecution of “crimes against peace” such as the Nuremberg Tribunal and the Tokyo Tribunal and similar wording to the Pact appeared in the Charter of the United Nations.

This source is part of the Analyzing Official Documents methods module. 

Text

ARTICLE I

The High Contracting Parties solemly declare in the names of their respective peoples that they condemn recourse to war for the solution of international controversies, and renounce it, as an instrument of national policy in their relations with one another.

ARTICLE II

The High Contracting Parties agree that the settlement or solution of all disputes or conflicts of whatever nature or of whatever origin they may be, which may arise among them, shall never be sought except by pacific means.

ARTICLE III

The present Treaty shall be ratified by the High Contracting Parties named in the Preamble in accordance with their respective constitutional requirements, and shall take effect as between them as soon as all their several instruments of ratification shall have been deposited at Washington.

This Treaty shall, when it has come into effect as prescribed in the preceding paragraph, remain open as long as may be necessary for adherence by all the other Powers of the world. Every instrument evidencing the adherence of a Power shall be deposited at Washington and the Treaty shall immediately upon such deposit become effective as; between the Power thus adhering and the other Powers parties hereto.

It shall be the duty of the Government of the United States to furnish each Government named in the Preamble and every Government subsequently adhering to this Treaty with a certified copy of the Treaty and of every instrument of ratification or adherence. It shall also be the duty of the Government of the United States telegraphically to notify such Governments immediately upon the deposit with it of each instrument of ratification or adherence.

IN FAITH WHEREOF the respective Plenipotentiaries have signed this Treaty in the French and English languages both texts having equal force, and hereunto affix their seals.

DONE at Paris, the twenty seventh day of August in the year one thousand nine hundred and twenty-eight.

Credits

Kellogg-Briand Pact, 1928, The Avalon Project, https://avalon.law.yale.edu/20th_century/kbpact.asp#art1

How to Cite This Source

"Excerpt from the Kellogg-Briand Pact, 1928," in World History Commons, https://worldhistorycommons.org/excerpt-kellogg-briand-pact-1928 [accessed December 3, 2021]