Section: C) - Syllabus 2

Anna Gazdag posted 4 months ago, 2 Responses
The Mongenthau plan as anti-mediation

Henry Morgenthau Jr. was the United States Secretary of the Treasury during the World War II (January 1, 1934 – July 22, 1945). He had a detailed plan to disarm and weaken the defeated Germany. It was first proposed in a memorandum entitled: Suggested Post-Surrender Program for Germany.
This plan was based on his professional expertise as the Secretary of the Treasury and was meant to resolve once and for all the conflict between the two sides of the World War II.

He was trying to be a mediator in a sense that he would resolve a conflict between the two sides (The Axis and The Allies) with a long term peaceful solution. Still, he didn’t follow the foundation principles of mediation.
The Plan was based on 14 points, which had the sole purpose to eliminate the possibility of a future conflict of a similar magnitude to the World War II. (commonly referred to as World War III.)
The following reasons make it an anti-mediation instead of an actual mediation:
The conflict already included violence and the two sides were not equal by the point where The Axis were defeated including Germany
- The two sides did not agree on his person being the mediator
He suggested a solution to the conflict between states which included the United States where he came from, which made him impartial
Additionally he was on the winning side which makes it questionable whether he meant good for both sides or only the side where he stood (The Allies)
He didn’t consult all members of both sides of the conflict hence he wasn’t fully aware of their interests and willingness to accept a compromise (although it was a plan, hence the Allied forces could still express their opinion before it is executed)
He solely focused on the demands of one side (Allied countries) and neglected the interest of the other side (which is also a proof that medation is definitely more mutually beneficial than an armed conflict resolution)
He was lacking any form of empathy towards The Axis
He dictated the conditions of the solution instead of leading the parties through questions to discover the solution for themselves
He also heavily focused on the economic aspect of a newly emerging conflict when an international conflict can have other roots as well, like a new ideology, environmental changes, demographic changes etc.
The newly established organisation which started a strong regime of actual mediation after the World War II. and tirelessly working on resolving international conflicts still to this day, world wide was established in the same country, the United States, on 26th June 1945. It’s members include but are not limited to the states and successor states of the parties of World War II. and it is called the United Nations. We can state that until today, 10th May 2020 the United Nations was successful in it’s mission to eliminate the reoccurence of a world war.

Henry Morgenthau Jr.: Suggested Post-Surrender Program for Germany, written sometime between January and early September 1944, also known as the Morgenthau Plan

Dear Anna,

these insights are great. As you can see, to be a mediator means many different things to people. Imagine the mental frame where he normally dwells, when he calls this a mediation.

BR, Daniel

Dear Daniel,
I think the vision of what a profession means, is the exact difference between a professional and a non-professional. Someone who is not a mediator should never have such a clear idea of what mediation is as someone who is a mediator.
Best regards,