Western Union (alliance)
The Western Union referred to as the Brussels Treaty Organisation, was the European military alliance established between France, the United Kingdom and the three Benelux countries in September 1948 in order to implement the Treaty of Brussels signed in March the same year. Under this treaty the signatories, referred to as the five powers, agreed to collaborate in the defence ﬁeld as well as in the political and cultural ﬁelds. During the Korean War, the headquarters and plans of the WU's defence arm, the Western Union Defence Organisation, were transferred to the newly established North Atlantic Treaty Organisation, providing the nucleus of NATO's command structure at the Supreme Headquarters Allied Powers Europe; as a consequence of the failure of the European Defence Community in 1954, the London and Paris Conferences led to the Modified Treaty of Brussels through which the Western Union was transformed into the Western European Union and was joined by Italy and West Germany. As the WEU's functions were transferred to the European Union's European Security and Defence Policy at the turn of the 21st century, the Western Union is a precursor of both NATO and the military arm of the EU.
In the aftermath of World War II there were fears of a renewal of German aggression, on 4 March 1947 the Treaty of Dunkirk was signed by France and the United Kingdom as a Treaty of Alliance and Mutual Assistance in the event of a possible attack. In his speech to the House of Commons on 22 January 1948, British Foreign Secretary Ernest Bevin called for the extension of the Treaty of Dunkirk to conclude the Benelux countries, creating a Western Union; the object was to consolidate Western Europe to satisfy the United States and to give advance notice of the eventual incorporation of Italy, Germany, into the Treaty. The negotiating conference was held on a few days after the coup in Prague; the Western Union was intended to provide Western Europe with a bulwark against the communist threat and to bring greater collective security. The Treaty of Brussels was signed on 17 March 1948 between Belgium, Luxembourg, the Netherlands and the United Kingdom, was an expansion to the preceding year's defence pledge, the Dunkirk Treaty signed between Britain and France.
Although the Treaty goes no further than providing for'cooperation' between the contracting parties,'which will be effected through the Consultative Council referred to in Article VII as well as through other bodies', in practice the arrangement was referred to as Western Union or the Brussels Treaty Organisation. When the division of Europe into two opposing camps became considered unavoidable, the threat of the USSR became much more important than the threat of German rearmament. Western Europe, sought a new mutual defence pact involving the United States, a powerful military force for such an alliance; the United States, concerned with containing the influence of the USSR, was responsive. Secret meetings began by the end of March 1949 between American and British officials to initiate the negotiations that led to the signing of the North Atlantic Treaty on 4 April 1949 in Washington, DC; the need to back up the commitments of the North Atlantic Treaty with appropriate political and military structures led to the creation of the North Atlantic Treaty Organisation.
In December 1950, with the appointment of General Eisenhower as the first Supreme Allied Commander Europe, the members of the Treaty of Brussels decided to transfer the headquarters and plans of the Western Union Military Organisation to NATO. NATO's Supreme Headquarters Allied Powers Europe took over responsibility for the defence of Western Europe, while the physical headquarters in Fontainebleau were transformed into NATO's Headquarters, Allied Forces Central Europe; as WUDO's capacities were transferred to NATO's SHAPE, Field Marshal Bernard Montgomery resigned as Commanders-in-Chief Committee Chairman on 31 March 1951 and took the position of deputy SACEUR Supreme Allied Commander Europe on 1 April 1951. The establishment of NATO, along with the signing of a succession of treaties establishing the Organisation for European Economic Cooperation, the North Atlantic Treaty Organisation, the Council of Europe and the European Coal and Steel Community, left the Western Union and its founding Treaty of Brussels was left devoid of much of its authority.
The Western Union's founding Treaty of Brussels was amended at the 1954 Paris Conference as a result of the failure of the Treaty establishing the European Defence Community to gain French ratification: The General Treaty of 1952 formally named the EDC as a prerequisite of the end of Allied occupation of Germany, there was a desire to include Germany in the Western defence architecture. The Modified Brussels Treaty transformed the Western Union into the Western European Union, at which point Italy and Germany were admitted. Although the WEU established by the Modified Brussels Treaty was less powerful and ambitious than the original Western Union, German membership of the WEU was considered sufficient for the occupation of the country to end in accordance with the General Treaty. Social and cultural aspects were handed to the Council of Europe to avoid duplication of responsibilities within Europe; the Treat
Ernest Bevin was a British statesman, trade union leader, Labour politician. He co-founded and served as general secretary of the powerful Transport and General Workers' Union in the years 1922–40, as Minister of Labour in the war-time coalition government, he succeeded in maximizing the British labour supply, for both the armed services and domestic industrial production, with a minimum of strikes and disruption. His most important role came as Foreign Secretary in the post-war Labour government, 1945–51, he gained American financial support opposed Communism, aided in the creation of NATO. Bevin's tenure saw the end of the Mandate of Palestine and the creation of the State of Israel, his biographer, Alan Bullock, said that Bevin "stands as the last of the line of foreign secretaries in the tradition created by Castlereagh and Palmerston in the first half of the 19th century", that due to the reduction in British power he has no successors. Bevin was born in the village of Winsford in Somerset, England, to Diana Bevin who, since 1877, had described herself as a widow.
His father is unknown. After his mother's death in 1889, the young Bevin lived with his half-sister's family, moving to Copplestone in Devon, he had little formal education, having attended two village schools and Hayward's School, starting in 1890 and leaving in 1892. He recalled being asked as a child to read the newspaper aloud for the benefit of adults in his family who were illiterate. At the age of eleven, he went to work as a labourer as a lorry driver in Bristol, where he joined the Bristol Socialist Society. In 1910 he became secretary of the Bristol branch of the Dock, Wharf and General Labourers' Union, in 1914 he became a national organiser for the union. Bevin was a physically large man, strong and by the time of his political prominence heavy, he spoke with a strong West Country accent, so much so that on one occasion listeners at Cabinet had difficulty in deciding whether he was talking about "Hugh and Nye" or "you and I". He had developed his oratorical skills from his time as a Baptist lay preacher, which he had given up as a profession to become a full-time labour activist.
Bevin married daughter of a wine taster at a Bristol wine merchants. They had a daughter, Queenie. Florence Bevin was appointed Dame Commander of the Order of the British Empire in 1952. In 1922 Bevin was one of the founding leaders of the Transport and General Workers Union, which soon became Britain's largest trade union. Upon his election as the union's general secretary, he became one of country's leading labour leaders, their strongest advocate within the Labour Party. Politically, he was on the right-wing of the Labour Party opposed to communism and direct action—allegedly due to anti-Semitic paranoia and seeing communism as a "Jewish plot" against Britain, he took part in the British General Strike without enthusiasm. Bevin had no great faith in parliamentary politics, but had been a member of the Labour Party from the time of its formation, unsuccessfully fought Bristol Central at the 1918 General Election, being defeated by the Coalition Conservative Thomas Inskip, he had poor relations with the first Labour Prime Minister, Ramsay MacDonald, was not surprised when MacDonald formed a National Government with the Conservatives during the economic crisis of 1931, for which MacDonald was expelled from the Labour Party.
At the 1931 general election, Bevin was persuaded by the remaining leaders of the Labour Party to contest Gateshead, on the understanding that if successful he would remain as general secretary of the TGWU. The National Government landslide resulted in Gateshead being lost by a large margin to the Liberal National Thomas Magnay. Bevin was a trade unionist who believed in getting material benefits for his members through direct negotiations, with strike action to be used as a last resort. During the late Thirties, for instance, Bevin helped to instigate a successful campaign by the TUC to extend paid holidays to a wider proportion of the workforce; this culminated in the Holidays with Pay Act of 1938, which extended entitlement to paid holidays to about 11 million workers by June 1939. During the 1930s, with the Labour Party split and weakened, Bevin co-operated with the Conservative-dominated government on practical issues, but during this period he became involved in foreign policy. He was of British appeasement of the fascist powers.
In 1935, arguing that Italy should be punished by sanctions for her recent invasion of Abyssinia, he made a blistering attack on the pacifists in the Labour Party, accusing the Labour leader George Lansbury at the Party Conference of "hawking his conscience around" asking to be told what to do with it. Lansbury resigned and was replaced as leader by his deputy Clement Attlee, who along with Lansbury and Stafford Cripps had been one of only three former Labour Ministers to be re-elected under that party label at the General Election in 1931. After the November 1935 General Election Herbert Morrison, newly returned to Parliament, challenged Attlee for the leadership but was defeated. In years Bevin gave Attlee staunch support in 1947 when Morrison and Cripps led further intrigue against Attlee. In 1940 Winston Churchill formed an all-party coalition government to run the country during the crisis of World War II. Churchill was impressed by Bevin's opposition to trade-union pacifism and his appetite for work (according to Churchill, Bevin was by'far the most distinguished man that the Labour Party have thrown up in my
Supreme Headquarters Allied Powers Europe
Supreme Headquarters Allied Powers Europe is the headquarters of the North Atlantic Treaty Organization's Allied Command Operations. Since 1967 it has been located at Casteau, north of the Belgian city of Mons, but it had been located, from 1953, at Rocquencourt, next to Versailles, France. From 1951 to 2003, SHAPE was the headquarters of Allied Command Europe. Since 2003 it has been the headquarters of Allied Command Operations, controlling all NATO operations worldwide. SHAPE retained its traditional name with reference to Europe for legal reasons although the geographical scope of its activities was extended in 2003. At that time, NATO's command in Lisbon part of Allied Command Atlantic, was reassigned to ACO; the commander of Allied Command Operations has retained the title "Supreme Allied Commander Europe", continues to be a U. S. four-star general officer or flag officer who serves as Commander, U. S. European Command. An integrated military structure for NATO was first established after the Korean War raised questions over the strength of Europe's defences against a Soviet attack.
The first choice for commander in Europe was American General of the Army Dwight D. Eisenhower, as he had directed the Allied landings in Normandy and subsequent march into Germany during World War II, amid many inter-Allied controversies over the proper conduct of the campaign on the Western Front. On December 19, 1950, the North Atlantic Council announced the appointment of General Eisenhower as the first SACEUR. British Field Marshal Sir Bernard L. Montgomery moved over from the predecessor Western Union Defence Organization to become the first Deputy SACEUR, who would serve until 1958. Volume 3 of Nigel Hamilton's Life of Montgomery of Alamein gives a good account of Montgomery's exacting, tireless approach to improving the command's readiness, which caused a good deal of bruised feelings in doing so. In establishing the command, the first NATO planners drew extensively on WUDO personnel. General Eisenhower arrived in Paris on January 1, 1951, set to work with a small group of planners to devise a structure for the new European command.
The Planning Group worked in the Hotel Astoria in central Paris while construction of a permanent facility began at Rocquencourt, just west of the city, at Camp Voluceau. Devising command arrangements in the Central Region, which contained the bulk of NATO's forces, proved to be much more complicated. General Eisenhower considered naming an overall Commander-in-Chief there as well but soon realized it would be difficult to find an arrangement that would satisfy all three major powers with forces in the Center—the United States, United Kingdom and France—as they had differing views on the proper relationship of air and ground power. Drawing upon his World War II experience, General Eisenhower decided to retain overall control himself and did not appoint a C-in-C for the Central Region. Instead there would be three separate C-in-C's. In December 1950 it was announced that the forces to come under General Eisenhower's command were to be the U. S. Seventh Army in Germany, the British Army of the Rhine, with the 2nd Infantry and 7th Armoured Divisions, to be bolstered by the 11th Armoured Division and a further infantry division, three French divisions in Germany and Austria, the Danish and the Independent Norwegian Brigades in Western Germany, the American and British garrisons in Austria and Berlin.
Four days after Eisenhower's arrival in Paris, on 5 January 1951, the Italian defence minister, Randolfo Pacciardi, announced that three Italian divisions were to be formed as Italy's'initial contribution to the Atlantic army', that these divisions would come under Eisenhower's control. On April 2, 1951, General Eisenhower signed the activation order for Allied Command Europe and its headquarters at SHAPE. Headquarters, Allied Forces Central Europe was activated in Fontainebleau, France in 1953. On the same day, ACE's subordinate headquarters in Northern and Central Europe were activated, with the Southern Region following in June. By 1954 ACE's forces consisted of Allied Forces Northern Europe, at Oslo, Allied Forces Central Europe, Allied Forces Southern Europe and Allied Forces Mediterranean at Malta; the commanders and commands in 1957 were: Supreme Allied Commander Europe – General Lauris Norstad, United States Air Force Deputy Supreme Allied Commander Europe – Field Marshal The Viscount Montgomery of Alamein, British Army Chief of Staff – General Courtlandt Van R. Schuyler, United States Army Allied Forces Northern Europe – Lieutenant General Sir Cecil Sugden, British Army Allied Forces Central Europe – Général d'Armée Jean-Étienne Valluy, French Army Allied Air Forces Central Europe – Air Chief Marshal Sir George Mills, Royal Air Force Northern Army Group – General Sir Richard Gale, British Army Central Army Group – General Henry I.
Hodes, United States Army Allied Forces Southern Europe – Admiral R. P. M. Bristol, United States Navy Naval Striking and Support Forces Southern Europe – Vice Admiral Charles R. Brown, United States Navy Allied Forces Mediterranean – Admiral Sir Ralph Edwards, Royal Navy Four exercises were conducted in the ACE area during autumn 1952. Blue Alliance was a major allied air force exercise for the Allied Air Forces Central Europe to achieve air supremacy over the Central European front and provide close air support to NORTHAG ground forces under the overall command of Lt. General Lauris Norstad, USAF. Two 1952 central region exercises involved air-ground combined forces. Equinox was a major air-ground
Treaties of the European Union
The Treaties of the European Union are a set of international treaties between the European Union member states which sets out the EU's constitutional basis. They establish the various EU institutions together with their remit and objectives; the EU can only act within the competences granted to it through these treaties and amendment to the treaties requires the agreement and ratification of every single signatory. Two core functional treaties, the Treaty on European Union and the Treaty on the Functioning of the European Union, lay out how the EU operates, there are a number of satellite treaties which are interconnected with them; the treaties have been amended by other treaties over the 65 years since they were first signed. The consolidated version of the two core treaties is published by the European Commission; the two principal treaties on which the EU is based are the Treaty on European Union and the Treaty on the Functioning of the European Union. These main treaties have been altered by amending treaties at least once a decade since they each came into force, the latest being the Treaty of Lisbon which came into force in 2009.
The Lisbon Treaty made the Charter of Fundamental Rights binding, though it remains a separate document. Following the preamble the treaty text is divided into six parts. Title 1, Common ProvisionsThe first deals with common provisions. Article 1 establishes the European Union on the basis of the European Community and lays out the legal value of the treaties; the second article states that the EU is "founded on the values of respect for human dignity, democracy, the rule of law and respect for human rights, including the rights of persons belonging to minorities". The member states share a "society in which pluralism, non-discrimination, justice and equality between women and men prevail". Article 3 states the aims of the EU in six points; the first is to promote peace, European values and its citizens' well-being. The second relates to free movement with external border controls are in place. Point 3 deals with the internal market. Point 4 establishes the euro. Point 5 states the EU shall promote its values, contribute to eradicating poverty, observe human rights and respect the charter of the United Nations.
The final sixth point states that the EU shall pursue these objectives by "appropriate means" according with its competences given in the treaties. Article 4 relates to member states' sovereignty and obligations. Article 5 sets out the principles of conferral and proportionality with respect to the limits of its powers. Article 6 binds the EU to the Charter of Fundamental Rights of the European Union and the European Convention on Human Rights. Article 7 deals with the suspension of a member state and article 8 deals with establishing close relations with neighbouring states. Title 2, Provisions on democratic principlesArticle 9 establishes the equality of national citizens and citizenship of the European Union. Article 10 declares that the EU is founded in representative democracy and that decisions must be taken as as possible to citizens, it makes reference to European political parties and how citizens are represented: directly in the Parliament and by their governments in the Council and European Council – accountable to national parliaments.
Article 11 establishes government transparency, declares that broad consultations must be made and introduces provision for a petition where at least 1 million citizens may petition the Commission to legislate on a matter. Article 12 gives national parliaments limited involvement in the legislative process. Title 3, Provisions on the institutionsArticle 13 establishes the institutions in the following order and under the following names: the European Parliament, the European Council, the Council, the European Commission, the Court of Justice of the European Union, the European Central Bank and the Court of Auditors, it obliges co-operation between these and limits their competencies to the powers within the treaties. Article 14 deals with the workings of Parliament and its election, article 15 with the European Council and its president, article 16 with the Council and its configurations and article 17 with the Commission and its appointment. Article 18 establishes the High Representative of the Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy and article 19 establishes the Court of Justice.
Title 4, Provisions on enhanced cooperationsTitle 4 has only one article which allows a limited number of member states to co-operate within the EU if others are blocking integration in that field. Title 5, General provisions on the Union's external action and specific provisions on the Common Foreign and Security PolicyChapter 1 of this title includes articles 21 and 22. Article 21 deals with the principles. Article 22 gives the European Council, acting unanimously, control over defining the EU's foreign policy. Chapter 2 is further divided into sections; the first, common provisions, details the guidelines and functioning of the EU's foreign policy, including establishment of the European External Action Service and member state's responsibilities. Section 2, articles 42 to 46, deal with military cooperation. Title 6, Final p
The United Kingdom the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland, sometimes referred to as Britain, is a sovereign country located off the north-western coast of the European mainland. The United Kingdom includes the island of Great Britain, the north-eastern part of the island of Ireland, many smaller islands. Northern Ireland is the only part of the United Kingdom that shares a land border with another sovereign state, the Republic of Ireland. Apart from this land border, the United Kingdom is surrounded by the Atlantic Ocean, with the North Sea to the east, the English Channel to the south and the Celtic Sea to the south-west, giving it the 12th-longest coastline in the world; the Irish Sea lies between Great Ireland. With an area of 242,500 square kilometres, the United Kingdom is the 78th-largest sovereign state in the world, it is the 22nd-most populous country, with an estimated 66.0 million inhabitants in 2017. The UK is constitutional monarchy; the current monarch is Queen Elizabeth II, who has reigned since 1952, making her the longest-serving current head of state.
The United Kingdom's capital and largest city is London, a global city and financial centre with an urban area population of 10.3 million. Other major urban areas in the UK include Greater Manchester, the West Midlands and West Yorkshire conurbations, Greater Glasgow and the Liverpool Built-up Area; the United Kingdom consists of four constituent countries: England, Scotland and Northern Ireland. Their capitals are London, Edinburgh and Belfast, respectively. Apart from England, the countries have their own devolved governments, each with varying powers, but such power is delegated by the Parliament of the United Kingdom, which may enact laws unilaterally altering or abolishing devolution; the nearby Isle of Man, Bailiwick of Guernsey and Bailiwick of Jersey are not part of the UK, being Crown dependencies with the British Government responsible for defence and international representation. The medieval conquest and subsequent annexation of Wales by the Kingdom of England, followed by the union between England and Scotland in 1707 to form the Kingdom of Great Britain, the union in 1801 of Great Britain with the Kingdom of Ireland created the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland.
Five-sixths of Ireland seceded from the UK in 1922, leaving the present formulation of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland. There are fourteen British Overseas Territories, the remnants of the British Empire which, at its height in the 1920s, encompassed a quarter of the world's land mass and was the largest empire in history. British influence can be observed in the language and political systems of many of its former colonies; the United Kingdom is a developed country and has the world's fifth-largest economy by nominal GDP and ninth-largest economy by purchasing power parity. It has a high-income economy and has a high Human Development Index rating, ranking 14th in the world, it was the world's first industrialised country and the world's foremost power during the 19th and early 20th centuries. The UK remains a great power, with considerable economic, military and political influence internationally, it is sixth in military expenditure in the world. It has been a permanent member of the United Nations Security Council since its first session in 1946.
It has been a leading member state of the European Union and its predecessor, the European Economic Community, since 1973. The United Kingdom is a member of the Commonwealth of Nations, the Council of Europe, the G7, the G20, NATO, the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development and the World Trade Organization; the 1707 Acts of Union declared that the kingdoms of England and Scotland were "United into One Kingdom by the Name of Great Britain". The term "United Kingdom" has been used as a description for the former kingdom of Great Britain, although its official name from 1707 to 1800 was "Great Britain"; the Acts of Union 1800 united the kingdom of Great Britain and the kingdom of Ireland in 1801, forming the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland. Following the partition of Ireland and the independence of the Irish Free State in 1922, which left Northern Ireland as the only part of the island of Ireland within the United Kingdom, the name was changed to the "United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland".
Although the United Kingdom is a sovereign country, Scotland and Northern Ireland are widely referred to as countries. The UK Prime Minister's website has used the phrase "countries within a country" to describe the United Kingdom; some statistical summaries, such as those for the twelve NUTS 1 regions of the United Kingdom refer to Scotland and Northern Ireland as "regions". Northern Ireland is referred to as a "province". With regard to Northern Ireland, the descriptive name used "can be controversial, with the choice revealing one's political preferences"; the term "Great Britain" conventionally refers to the island of Great Britain, or politically to England and Wales in combination. However, it is sometimes used as a loose synonym for the United Kingdom as a whole; the term "Britain" is used both as a synonym for Great Britain, as a synonym for the United Kingdom. Usage is mixed, with the BBC preferring to use Britain as shorthand only for Great Britain and the UK Government, while accepting that both terms refer to the United K
Council of Europe
The Council of Europe is an international organisation whose stated aim is to uphold human rights and the rule of law in Europe. Founded in 1949, it has 47 member states, covers 820 million people and operates with an annual budget of 500 million euros; the organisation is distinct from the 28-nation European Union, although it is sometimes confused with it because the EU has adopted the original European Flag, created by the Council of Europe in 1955, as well as the European Anthem. No country has joined the EU without first belonging to the Council of Europe; the Council of Europe is an official United Nations Observer. Unlike the EU, the Council of Europe cannot make binding laws, but it does have the power to enforce select international agreements reached by European states on various topics; the best known body of the Council of Europe is the European Court of Human Rights, which enforces the European Convention on Human Rights. The Council's two statutory bodies are the Committee of Ministers, comprising the foreign ministers of each member state, the Parliamentary Assembly, composed of members of the national parliaments of each member state.
The Commissioner for Human Rights is an independent institution within the Council of Europe, mandated to promote awareness of and respect for human rights in the member states. The Secretary General heads the secretariat of the organisation. Other major CoE bodies include the European Directorate for the Quality of Medicines and the European Audiovisual Observatory; the headquarters of the Council of Europe are in France. English and French are its two official languages; the Committee of Ministers, the Parliamentary Assembly and the Congress use German, Italian and Turkish for some of their work. Britain's wartime leader Sir Winston Churchill was the first to suggest the creation of "a Council of Europe" in a BBC radio broadcast on 21 March 1943, while the second world war was still raging. In his own words, he tried to "peer through the mists of the future to the end of the war," once victory had been achieved, think about how to re-build and maintain peace on a shattered continent. Given that Europe had been at the origin of two world wars, the creation of such a body would be, he suggested, "a stupendous business".
He returned to the idea during a well-known speech at the University of Zurich on 19 September 1946, throwing the full weight of his considerable post-war prestige behind it. The future structure of the Council of Europe was discussed at a specific congress of several hundred leading politicians, government representatives and civil society in The Hague, Netherlands, in 1948. There were two schools of thought competing: some favoured a classical international organisation with representatives of governments, while others preferred a political forum with parliamentarians. Both approaches were combined through the creation of a Committee of Ministers and a Consultative Assembly, the two main bodies mentioned in the Statute of the Council of Europe; this dual intergovernmental and inter-parliamentary structure was copied for the European Communities, North Atlantic Treaty Organization and the Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe. The Council of Europe was founded on 5 May 1949 by the Treaty of London.
The Statute was signed in London on that day by ten states: Belgium, France, Italy, the Netherlands, Norway and the United Kingdom. Three months on 10 August 1949, 100 members of the Council's Consultative Assembly, parliamentarians drawn from twelve nations, met in Strasbourg for its first plenary session, held over 18 sittings and lasting nearly a month, they debated how to reconcile and reconstruct a continent still reeling from war, yet facing a new East-West divide, launched the concept of a trans-national court to protect the basic human rights of every European citizen, took the first steps towards what would in time become the European Union. In August 1949, Paul-Henri Spaak of Belgium was elected president of the first session of the assembly. Spaak helped develop a network of intergovernmental contacts in many fields, such as human rights, local government, culture and youth policy. However, the organization only played an advisory role, was not nearly strong enough to achieve Spaak's long-term goals of European unification.
In 2018 an archive of all speeches made to the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe by heads of state or government since the Council of Europe's creation in 1949 appeared online, the fruit of a two-year project entitled "Voices of Europe". At the time of its launch, the archive comprised 263 speeches delivered over a 70-year period by some 216 Presidents, Prime Ministers and religious leaders from 45 countries - though it continues to expand, as new speeches are added every few months; some early speeches by individuals considered to be "founding figures" of the European institutions if they were not heads of state or government at the time, are included. Addresses by eight monarchs appear in the list as well as the speeches given by religious figures and several leaders from countries in the Middle East and North Africa; the full text of the speeches is given in both En
The Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development is an intergovernmental economic organisation with 36 member countries, founded in 1961 to stimulate economic progress and world trade. It is a forum of countries describing themselves as committed to democracy and the market economy, providing a platform to compare policy experiences, seek answers to common problems, identify good practices and coordinate domestic and international policies of its members. Most OECD members are high-income economies with a high Human Development Index and are regarded as developed countries; as of 2017, the OECD member states collectively comprised 62.2% of global nominal GDP and 42.8% of global GDP at purchasing power parity. OECD is an official United Nations observer. In 1948, the OECD originated as the Organisation for European Economic Co-operation, led by Robert Marjolin of France, to help administer the Marshall Plan; this would be achieved by allocating United States financial aid and implementing economic programs for the reconstruction of Europe after World War II.
In 1961, the OEEC was reformed into the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development by the Convention on the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development and membership was extended to non-European states. The OECD's headquarters are at the Château de la Muette in France; the OECD is funded by contributions from member states at varying rates and had a total budget of €374 million in 2017. The Organisation for European Economic Co-operation was formed in 1948 to administer American and Canadian aid in the framework of the Marshall Plan for the reconstruction of Europe after World War II, it started its operations on 16 April 1948, originated from the work done by the Committee of European Economic Co-operation in 1947 in preparation for the Marshall Plan. Since 1949, it was headquartered in the Château de la Muette in France. After the Marshall Plan ended, the OEEC focused on economic issues. According to Yanis Varoufakis, the OEEC can be seen as a continental planning commission established by the victorious United States following the successful model of their planning commissions of the New Deal.
The economic philosophy these commission followed can be characterized as Keynesian. The lead in the organisation should be with a strong integration of the Germans. In the 1950s, the OEEC provided the framework for negotiations aimed at determining conditions for setting up a European Free Trade Area, to bring the European Economic Community of the six and the other OEEC members together on a multilateral basis. In 1958, a European Nuclear Energy Agency was set up under the OEEC. By the end of the 1950s, with the job of rebuilding Europe done, some leading countries felt that the OEEC had outlived its purpose, but could be adapted to fulfill a more global mission, it would be a hard-fought task, after several sometimes fractious meetings at the Hotel Majestic in Paris starting in January 1960, a resolution was reached to create a body that would deal not only with European and Atlantic economic issues, but devise policies to assist less developed countries. This reconstituted organisation would bring the US and Canada, who were OEEC observers, on board as full members.
It would set to work straight away on bringing in Japan. Following the 1957 Rome Treaties to launch the European Economic Community, the Convention on the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development was drawn up to reform the OEEC; the Convention was signed in December 1960 and the OECD superseded the OEEC in September 1961. It consisted of the European founder countries of the OEEC plus the United States and Canada, with Japan joining three years later; the official founding members are: During the next 12 years Japan, Finland and New Zealand joined the organisation. Yugoslavia had observer status in the organisation starting with the establishment of the OECD until its dissolution as a country; the OECD created agencies such as the OECD Development Centre, International Energy Agency, Financial Action Task Force on Money Laundering. Unlike the organisations of the United Nations system, OECD uses the spelling "organisation" with an "s" in its name rather than "organization". In 1989, after the Revolutions of 1989, the OECD started to assist countries in Central Europe to prepare market economy reforms.
In 1990, the Centre for Co-operation with European Economies in Transition was established, in 1991, the Programme "Partners in Transition" was launched for the benefit of Czechoslovakia and Poland. This programme included a membership option for these countries; as a result of this, Hungary, the Czech Republic, Slovakia, as well as Mexico and South Korea became members of the OECD between 1994 and 2000. In the 1990s, a number of European countries, now members of the European Union, expressed their willingness to join the organisation. In 1995, Cyprus applied for membership, according to the Cypriot government, it was vetoed by Turkey. In 1996, Estonia and Lithuania signed a Joint Declaration expressing willingness to become full members of the OECD. Slovenia applied for membership that same year. In 2005, Malta applied to join the organisation; the EU is lobbying for admission of all EU member states. Romania reaffirmed in 2