Introduction: The main events

The pursuit of League of Nations approval for every activity undertaken in the name of Greek diplomacy characterized the period following the Treaty of Lausanne. Grave domestic problems (refugees etc.) took priority over the mapping out of foreign policy. Even though in the period 1923-40 there were no grave events similar to those of the immediate past (Balkan Wars, Asia Minor Campaign), the international situation - which was particularly unfavourable to Greece - sometimes led to incidents at the expense of the country (occupation of Corfu by the Italians) and sometimes impulsive acts (e.g. concluding unfortunate diplomatic agreements). The bilateral relations of the country remained for a considerable period problematic.
The consequences of the revisionist policy adopted by the dictator Theodoros Pangalos (1925-26) and the apparent incapacity of the instruments of the League of Nations to support the mechanisms of collective security, oriented the country towards new strategic objectives, like achieving friendlier relations within the international environment and in particular of course with the Great Powers. In this respect, the basic events of this period consisted mainly of diplomatic pacts and treaties containing various elements, the main concern being to ensure the interests of the country. In the 1930s the strengthening of Fascist Italy and Nazi Germany, and international developments such as the crisis in Abyssinia (1935) and its counterpart in Munich (1938), put Greece on the margin of the international competition that would culminate in the outbreak of the Second World War, in the context of which Greece played a role of decisive importance.