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This Happened

This Happened—December 4: Woodrow Wilson Makes A Historic Trip

Woodrow Wilson was the 28th President of the United States, serving from 1913 to 1921, during a period when the U.S. came into its role as a global power. His accomplishments would include the first-ever presidential trip to Europe.

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Why did Woodrow Wilson go to Europe?

At the end of World War I, Wilson created the League of Nations, the first international organization whose role was to maintain world peace. To attend the Paris Peace Conference following the War, Wilson became the first U.S. president in office to visit Europe. At the time, it required a nine-day Ocean journey from New Jersey to Brittany.

What was the Paris Peace Conference?

The Paris Peace Conference was called to set the terms of the peace after World War I. About 30 nations participated, but the conference was dominated by the “Big Four”: Italy, France, United Kingdom and the United States. The Conference led to the signature of the Treaty of Versailles, which put an end to World War I.

What was Wilson’s role at the Paris Peace Conference?

At the Paris Peace Conference, Woodrow Wilson was a strong advocate of creating an international structure to preserve a lasting peace. At the conference, he made a speech promoting his Fourteen Points, a statement of principles for peace that was to be used in the peace negotiations. They included trade equality, arms reduction and the right to self-determination but were not included in the Treaty of Versailles.

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Geopolitics

The Trumpian Virus Undermining Democracy Is Now Spreading Through South America

Taking inspiration from events in the United States over the past four years, rejection of election results and established state institutions is on the rise in Latin America.

Two supporters of far-right Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro dressed in Brazilian flags during a demonstration in Belo Horizonte, Brazil.

Bolsonaro supporters dressed in national colours with flags in a demonstration in Belo Horizonte, Brazil, on November 4, 2022.

Ivan Abreu / ZUMA
Carlos Ruckauf*

-Analysis-

BUENOS AIRES — South Africa's Nelson Mandela used to say it was "so easy to break down and destroy. The heroes are those who make peace and build."

Intolerance toward those who think differently, even inside the same political space, is corroding the bases of representative democracy, which is the only system we know that allows us to live and grow in freedom, in spite of its flaws.

Recent events in South America and elsewhere are precisely alerting us to that danger. The most explosive example was in Brazil, where a crowd of thousands managed to storm key institutional premises like the presidential palace, parliament and the Supreme Court.

In Peru, the country's Marxist (now former) president, Pedro Castillo, sought to use the armed and security forces to shut down parliament and halt the Supreme Court and state prosecutors from investigating corruption allegations against him.

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