I think the answer is not difficult to find when one remembers that Mr. Wilson had disapproved a resolution of that sort and that the Council of Ten had seemed disposed to approve it. There was no surer way to prevent me from bringing the subject again before the Council than by having the proposed resolution before him for action. Having submitted it to him I was bound, on account of our official relationship, to await his decision before taking any further steps. In a word, his request for a draft practically closed my mouth and tied my hands. If he sought to check my activities with the members of the Council in favor of the proposed course of action, he could have taken no more effectual way than the one which he did take. It was undoubtedly an effective means of “pigeonholing” a resolution, the further discussion of which might interfere with his plan to force through a report upon the Covenant before the middle of February.
This opinion as to the motive which impelled the President to pursue the course that he did in regard to a resolution was not the one held by me at the time. It was formed only after subsequent events threw new light on the subject. The delay perplexed me at the time, but the reason for it was not evident. I continued to hope, even after the Commission on the League of Nations had assembled and had begun its deliberations, that the policy of a resolution would be adopted. But, as the days went by and the President made no mention of the proposal, I realized that he did not intend to discuss it, and the conviction was forced upon me that he had never intended to have it discussed. It was a disappointing result and one which impressed me with the belief that Mr. Wilson was prejudiced against any suggestion that I might make, if it in any way differed with his own ideas even though it found favor with others.
THE GUARANTY IN THE REVISED COVENANT
During the three weeks preceding the meeting of the Commission on the League the work of revising the President’s original draft of the Covenant had been in progress, the President and Colonel House holding frequent interviews with the more influential delegates, particularly the British and French statesmen who had been charged with the duty of studying the subject. While I cannot speak from personal knowledge, I learned that the suggested changes in terms and language were put into form by members of the Colonel’s office staff. In addition to modifications which were made to meet the wishes of the foreign statesmen, especially the British, Mr. Gordon Auchincloss, the son-in-law and secretary of Colonel House, and Mr. David Hunter Miller, Auchincloss’s law partner and one of the accredited legal advisers of the American Commission, prepared an elaborate memorandum on the President’s draft of a Covenant which contained comments and also suggested changes in the text.