Argentina the Argentine Republic, is a country located in the southern half of South America. Sharing the bulk of the Southern Cone with Chile to the west, the country is bordered by Bolivia and Paraguay to the north, Brazil to the northeast and the South Atlantic Ocean to the east, the Drake Passage to the south. With a mainland area of 2,780,400 km2, Argentina is the eighth-largest country in the world, the fourth largest in the Americas, the largest Spanish-speaking nation; the sovereign state is subdivided into twenty-three provinces and one autonomous city, Buenos Aires, the federal capital of the nation as decided by Congress. The provinces and the capital exist under a federal system. Argentina claims sovereignty over part of Antarctica, the Falkland Islands, South Georgia and the South Sandwich Islands; the earliest recorded human presence in modern-day Argentina dates back to the Paleolithic period. The Inca Empire expanded to the northwest of the country in Pre-Columbian times; the country has its roots in Spanish colonization of the region during the 16th century.
Argentina rose as the successor state of the Viceroyalty of the Río de la Plata, a Spanish overseas viceroyalty founded in 1776. The declaration and fight for independence was followed by an extended civil war that lasted until 1861, culminating in the country's reorganization as a federation of provinces with Buenos Aires as its capital city; the country thereafter enjoyed relative peace and stability, with several waves of European immigration radically reshaping its cultural and demographic outlook. The almost-unparalleled increase in prosperity led to Argentina becoming the seventh wealthiest nation in the world by the early 20th century. Following the Great Depression in the 1930s, Argentina descended into political instability and economic decline that pushed it back into underdevelopment, though it remained among the fifteen richest countries for several decades. Following the death of President Juan Perón in 1974, his widow, Isabel Martínez de Perón, ascended to the presidency, she was overthrown in 1976 by a U.
S.-backed coup which installed a right-wing military dictatorship. The military government persecuted and murdered numerous political critics and leftists in the Dirty War, a period of state terrorism that lasted until the election of Raúl Alfonsín as President in 1983. Several of the junta's leaders were convicted of their crimes and sentenced to imprisonment. Argentina is a prominent regional power in the Southern Cone and Latin America, retains its historic status as a middle power in international affairs. Argentina has the second largest economy in South America, the third-largest in Latin America, membership in the G-15 and G-20 major economies, it is a founding member of the United Nations, World Bank, World Trade Organization, Union of South American Nations, Community of Latin American and Caribbean States and the Organization of Ibero-American States. Despite its history of economic instability, it ranks second highest in the Human Development Index in Latin America; the description of the country by the word Argentina has been found on a Venetian map in 1536.
In English the name "Argentina" comes from the Spanish language, however the naming itself is not Spanish, but Italian. Argentina means in Italian " of silver, silver coloured" borrowed from the Old French adjective argentine " of silver" > "silver coloured" mentioned in the 12th century. The French word argentine is the feminine form of argentin and derives from argent "silver" with the suffix -in; the Italian naming "Argentina" for the country implies Terra Argentina "land of silver" or Costa Argentina "coast of silver". In Italian, the adjective or the proper noun is used in an autonomous way as a substantive and replaces it and it is said l'Argentina; the name Argentina was first given by the Venetian and Genoese navigators, such as Giovanni Caboto. In Spanish and Portuguese, the words for "silver" are plata and prata and " of silver" is said plateado and prateado. Argentina was first associated with the silver mountains legend, widespread among the first European explorers of the La Plata Basin.
The first written use of the name in Spanish can be traced to La Argentina, a 1602 poem by Martín del Barco Centenera describing the region. Although "Argentina" was in common usage by the 18th century, the country was formally named "Viceroyalty of the Río de la Plata" by the Spanish Empire, "United Provinces of the Río de la Plata" after independence; the 1826 constitution included the first use of the name "Argentine Republic" in legal documents. The name "Argentine Confederation" was commonly used and was formalized in the Argentine Constitution of 1853. In 1860 a presidential decree settled the country's name as "Argentine Republic", that year's constitutional amendment ruled all the names since 1810 as valid. In the English language the country was traditionally called "the Argentine", mimicking the typical Spanish usage la Argentina and resulting from a mistaken shortening of the fuller name'Argentine Republic'.'The Argentine' fell out of fashion during the mid-to-late 20th century, now the country is referred to as "Argentina".
In the Spanish language "Argentina" is feminine, taking the feminine article "La" as the i
The Argentine Confederation was the last predecessor state of modern Argentina. It was the name of the country from 1831 to 1852, when the provinces were organized as a confederation without a head of state; the governor of Buenos Aires Province managed foreign relations during this time. Under his rule, the Argentine Confederation resisted attacks by Brazil, Uruguay and the UK, as well as other Argentine factions during the Argentine Civil Wars. Rosas was ousted from power in 1852 after the battle of Caseros. Urquiza convened the 1853 Constituent Assembly to write a national constitution. Buenos Aires resisted Urquiza and seceded from the Confederation in 1852, becoming the State of Buenos Aires. Modern Argentina is a small subset of the Viceroyalty of the Río de la Plata, a colony of Spain which included present day Bolivia, part of Peru and most of Paraguay. Long after attaining independence, Argentina conquered large areas of indigenous land; the May Revolution in Buenos Aires began the Argentine War of Independence, the country was renamed the United Provinces of the Río de la Plata.
Modern Bolivia and Paraguay became new states. Uruguay was invaded and annexed by Brazil in 1816, until the Thirty-Three Orientals led an insurrection to rejoin the United Provinces; this began the Cisplatine War, which ended with the Treaty of Montevideo that made Uruguay a new state. When Argentine forces returned to Buenos Aires, Juan Lavalle led a military coup against governor Manuel Dorrego, he executed him and began a campaign against all federals, supported by José María Paz in Córdoba, who deposed Juan Bautista Bustos and took similar measures against federals. The rancher Juan Manuel de Rosas organized the resistance against Lavalle, forcing him out of government and restoring the Legislature. Paz organized the Unitarian League with the provinces that joined him, Rosas signed the Federal Pact with Entre Ríos and Santa Fe. All the unitarian provinces were defeated and joined the Pact, became the Argentine Confederation. Rosas declined a new term as governor after the victory over the unitarian league.
Rosas left Buenos Aires and waged the first campaign in the desert in the south, to prevent further malones from the indigenous peoples. The campaign combined military actions and negotiations, succeeded in preventing malones for several years. Despite being absent, the political influence of Rosas in Buenos Aires was still strong, his wife Encarnación Ezcurra was in charge of keeping good relations with the people of the city. On October 11, 1833, the city was filled with announcements of a trial against "The restorer of laws". A large number of gauchos and poor people instigated the Revolution of the Restorers, a demonstration at the gates of the legislature, praising Rosas and demanding the resignation of Governor Juan Ramón Balcarce; the troops who were organized to fight the demonstration instead joined it. The legislature gave up the trial, a month ousted Balcarce and replaced him with Juan José Viamonte. Still, the social unrest led many people to believe that only Rosas could secure order, that Viamonte or Manuel Vicente Maza would be unable to do so.
The murder of Facundo Quiroga in Córdoba increased this belief, so the legislature appointed him governor in 1835, with the sum of public power. Rosas faced a difficult military threat during first years of his second administration. First, the Peru–Bolivian Confederation in the North declared the War of the Confederation against Argentina and Chile. France made diplomatic requests which were denied by Rosas, subsequently imposed a naval blockade as a result. France invaded Martín García island and deposed the Uruguayan president Manuel Oribe, appointing instead the loyal Fructuoso Rivera, who declared war on Argentina in support of France. Domingo Cullen, from Santa Fe, promoted the secession of all provinces, leaving Buenos Aires alone in the conflict. Berón de Astrada, from Corrientes, opposed Rosas as well, Juan Lavalle organized an army to take Buenos Aires; the ranchers organized the "Freemen of the South" militia. Rosas overcame all these threats; the Peru–Bolivian Confederation was defeated by Chile and ceased to exist.
Cullen was defeated and shot, Astrada was defeated by Justo José de Urquiza. The ranchers were defeated as well; the diplomat Manuel Moreno channeled the protests of the British merchants in Buenos Aires who were impacted by the blockade. France lifted the blockade with the Mackau-Arana treaty. Lavalle sought to continue the conflict anyway, he retreated before reaching Buenos Aires, without starting any battles, escaped to the North. He was chased by Oribe, now in charge of Argentine armies, died in unclear circumstances. Despite the French defeat, Uruguay was still an open war theater. Manuel Oribe claimed to be the rightful president of Uruguay, waged the Uruguayan Civil War against Rivera. Rosas supported Oribe in the conflict. Oribe laid siege to Montevideo. Britain and France joined forces with Rivera, captured the Argentine navy, began a new naval blockade against Buenos Aires. Giuseppe Garibaldi helped to secure the Uruguay river, aided by Italian soldiers. A new expedition tried to
Pedro I of Brazil
Dom Pedro I, nicknamed "the Liberator", was the founder and first ruler of the Empire of Brazil. As King Dom Pedro IV, he reigned over Portugal, where he became known as "the Liberator" as well as "the Soldier King". Born in Lisbon, Pedro I was the fourth child of King Dom João VI of Portugal and Queen Carlota Joaquina, thus a member of the House of Braganza; when their country was invaded by French troops in 1807, he and his family fled to Portugal's largest and wealthiest colony, Brazil. The outbreak of the Liberal Revolution of 1820 in Lisbon compelled Pedro I's father to return to Portugal in April 1821, leaving him to rule Brazil as regent, he had to deal with threats from revolutionaries and insubordination by Portuguese troops, all of which he subdued. The Portuguese government's threat to revoke the political autonomy that Brazil had enjoyed since 1808 was met with widespread discontent in Brazil. Pedro I chose the Brazilian side and declared Brazil's independence from Portugal on 7 September 1822.
On 12 October, he was acclaimed Brazilian emperor and by March 1824 had defeated all armies loyal to Portugal. A few months Pedro I crushed the short-lived Confederation of the Equator, a failed secession attempt by provincial rebels in Brazil's northeast. A secessionist rebellion in the southern province of Cisplatina in early 1825, the subsequent attempt by the United Provinces of the Río de la Plata to annex it, led the Empire into the Cisplatine War. In March 1826, Pedro I became king of Portugal before abdicating in favor of his eldest daughter, Dona Maria II; the situation worsened in 1828. During the same year in Lisbon, Maria II's throne was usurped by Prince Dom Miguel, Pedro I's younger brother; the Emperor's concurrent and scandalous sexual affair with a female courtier tarnished his reputation. Other difficulties arose in the Brazilian parliament, where a struggle over whether the government would be chosen by the monarch or by the legislature dominated political debates from 1826 to 1831.
Unable to deal with problems in both Brazil and Portugal on 7 April 1831 Pedro I abdicated in favor of his son Dom Pedro II, sailed for Europe. Pedro I invaded Portugal at the head of an army in July 1832. Faced at first with what seemed a national civil war, he soon became involved in a wider conflict that enveloped the Iberian Peninsula in a struggle between proponents of liberalism and those seeking a return to absolutism. Pedro I died of tuberculosis on 24 September 1834, just a few months after he and the liberals had emerged victorious, he was hailed by both contemporaries and posterity as a key figure who helped spread the liberal ideals that allowed Brazil and Portugal to move from Absolutist regimes to representative forms of government. Pedro was born at 08:00 on 12 October 1798 in the Queluz Royal Palace near Portugal, he was named after St. Peter of Alcantara, his full name was Pedro de Alcântara Francisco António João Carlos Xavier de Paula Miguel Rafael Joaquim José Gonzaga Pascoal Cipriano Serafim.
He was referred to using the honorific "Dom" from birth. Through his father, Prince Dom João, Pedro was a member of the House of Braganza and a grandson of King Dom Pedro III and Queen Dona Maria I of Portugal, who were uncle and niece as well as husband and wife, his mother, Doña Carlota Joaquina, was the daughter of King Don Carlos IV of Spain. Pedro's parents had an unhappy marriage. Carlota Joaquina was an ambitious woman, who always sought to advance Spain's interests to the detriment of Portugal's. Reputedly unfaithful to her husband, she went as far as to plot his overthrow in league with dissatisfied Portuguese nobles; as the second eldest son, Pedro became his father's heir apparent and Prince of Beira upon the death of his elder brother Francisco António in 1801. Prince Dom João had been acting as regent on behalf of his mother, Queen Maria I, after she was declared incurably insane in 1792. By 1802, Pedro's parents were estranged. Pedro and his siblings resided in the Queluz Palace with their grandmother Maria I, far from their parents, whom they saw only during state occasions at Queluz.
In late November 1807, when Pedro was nine, the royal family escaped from Portugal as an invading French army sent by Napoleon approached Lisbon. Pedro and his family arrived in Rio de Janeiro, capital of Brazil Portugal's largest and wealthiest colony, in March 1808. During the voyage, Pedro read Virgil's Aeneid and conversed with the ship's crew, picking up navigational skills. In Brazil, after a brief stay in the City Palace, Pedro settled with his younger brother Miguel and their father in the Palace of São Cristóvão. Although never on intimate terms with his father, Pedro loved him and resented the constant humiliation his father suffered at the hands of Carlota Joaquina due to her extramarital affairs; as an adult, Pedro would call his mother, for whom he held only feelings of contempt, a "bitch". The early experiences of betrayal and neglect had a great impact on the formation of Pedro's character. A modicum of stability during his childhood was provided by his aia, Maria Genoveva do Rêgo e Matos, whom he loved as a mother, by his aio friar António de Arrábida, who became his mentor.
Both attempted to furnish him with a suitable education. His instruction encompassed a broad array of subjects that included mathematics, political economy, logic and geography, he learned to speak and write not only in Por
Carlos María de Alvear
Carlos María de Alvear, was an Argentine soldier and statesman, Supreme Director of the United Provinces of the Río de la Plata in 1815. He was born Santo Ángel in the northern part of the Viceroyalty of the River Plate to a Spanish nobleman father, Diego de Alvear y Ponce de León, a criollo mother, María Balbastro and baptised Carlos Antonio del Santo Ángel Guardián, his birthplace Santo Ángel was, at that time, part of Misiones Province, but belongs to the Brazilian state of Rio Grande do Sul. While travelling in Spain, Alvear's brothers and mother died in an incident that took place on October 5, 1804, when English frigates opened fire on the Spanish ship, transporting them; this incident was a preamble to the Battle of Trafalgar and the consequent war between both countries. The English took Alvear and his father, together with other survivors, as prisoners to England, where Diego de Alvear would marry an Irish woman. Honouring his mother, Carlos de Alvear adopted the name of Carlos María de Alvear.
Notwithstanding the fate of his mother and brothers at the hands of the English, 15-year-old Carlos was educated in the English culture, adopting, in his adult age, what some would see as a position partial to English interests. Like many other nineteenth century Argentines prominent in public life, he was a freemason. Alvear was one of the few professional military officers to participate of the Argentine War of Independence on the side of the revolutionaries, having served in the Spanish Army during the Napoleonic Wars, he became an active Freemason. While in Cadiz, he founded the Sociedad de los Caballeros Racionales, a masonic secret society, made up of South Americans. José de San Martín, with whom Alvear would always have a conflictive and contradictory relationship, would also become a member of this secret society, he returned to Buenos Aires on board the English frigate George Canning, in which were travelling San Martín, Juan Matías Zapiola, Francisco Chilavert and other soldiers. Upon his arrival, Alvear was named Lieutenant Coronel of the young Argentine army.
He led the action against the Royal army under Gaspar Vigodet in Montevideo, replacing José Rondeau and making the Oriental leader José Gervasio Artigas an enemy. Alvear was a leader of the constituent Assembly of the year 1813 and, goaded by political ambition, succeeded in establishing an Unitarian form of government, having his uncle Gervasio Antonio de Posadas named Supreme Director. In early 1814, Alvear was appointed commander in chief of the forces defending the capital. A few months he replaced General José Rondeau as commander in chief of the army besieging Montevideo, the last bastion of Spanish power in the River Plate, defended by 5,000 troops. In late June 1814, as news that Ferdinand VII had recovered the crown of Spain, Alvear managed to force the surrender of the Spanish troops in Montevideo, it was the biggest victory for the cause of independence since 1810. He was the most successful general of the revolution, he returned to Buenos Aires to claim his laurels but a revolt forced him back to the Banda Oriental.
After a quick and decisive campaign, his forces defeated the caudillos. At the end of 1814 Alvear was named commander of the Army of the North, but he lacked of support from Posadas, his unpopularity among the troops, other disagreements—including a project for a constitutional monarchy that he sent to Europe to be negotiated by Manuel Belgrano, fiercely opposed by the League of Free Peoples—made him return to Buenos Aires. On January 9, 1815, at 25 years of age, he was chosen to replace his uncle Posadas as Supreme Director. Having neither the support of the troops nor sufficient influence on the people of the hinterland provinces, Director Alvear attempted to come to an alliance with Artigas, to whom he offered the independence of the Banda Oriental. In exchange, Artigas would withdraw his army from the Argentine Littoral, but Artigas declined the offer, Alvear sent troops to occupy the area. At this time he was in correspondence with the British ambassador in Rio de Janeiro, in order to ask for a British intervention.
Following a mutiny among his troops, under pressure from the Cabildo, Alvear resigned on April 15, left the country. He was in exile in Rio de Janeiro until 1818. In May of that year, he moved to Montevideo where he joined his friend, the Chilean Jose Miguel Carrera exiled due to political differences with San Martin and Bernardo O'Higgins. Alvear returned to Argentina in 1822 thanks to an amnesty law. At the end of 1823, Bernardino Rivadavia named him minister plenipotentiary to the United States. Before going to Washington, Alvear stopped in London and managed to get an interview with George Canning, Britain's Foreign Secretary. Weeks after this interview, the British cabinet formally recognized the independence of the United Provinces of the Rio de la Plata. In 1825 Alvear was sent by the Buenos Aires government to Bolivia to meet with Simón Bolivar; the real objective of this mission was to seek Bolivar's support in the looming war with the Empire of Brazil, over the Banda Oriental. Alvear had a project of his own: the creation of big republic in South America comprising Argentina, Bolivia and Uruguay.
He asked Bolivar to be its first president. The Venezuelan leader was sympathetic to this project but dissensions in Gran Colombia forced him to abandon it. To neutralize Alvear's political ambitions, newly elected President Bernardino Rivadavia appointed him his Minister of War and Navy in early 1826. In a short period of time, an
The Austrian Empire was a Central European multinational great power from 1804 to 1867, created by proclamation out of the realms of the Habsburgs. During its existence, it was the third most populous empire after the Russian Empire and the United Kingdom in Europe. Along with Prussia, it was one of the two major powers of the German Confederation. Geographically, it was the third largest empire in Europe after the Russian Empire and the First French Empire. Proclaimed in response to the First French Empire, it overlapped with the Holy Roman Empire until the latter's dissolution in 1806; the Kingdom of Hungary – as Regnum Independens – was administered by its own institutions separately from the rest of the empire. After Austria was defeated in the Austro-Prussian War of 1866, the Austro-Hungarian Compromise of 1867 was adopted, joining together the Kingdom of Hungary and the Empire of Austria to form Austria-Hungary; the power of nationalism to create new states was irresistible in the 19th century, the process could lead to collapse in the absence of a strong nationalism.
The Austrian Empire had the advantage of size, but multiple disadvantages. There were rivals on four sides, its finances were unstable, the population was fragmented into multiple ethnicities and languages that served as the bases for separatist nationalism, it had a large army with good forts. Its naval resources were so minimal, it typified by Metternich. They employed a grand strategy for survival that balanced out different forces, set up buffer zones, kept the Habsburg empire going despite wars with the Ottomans, Frederick the Great and Bismarck, until the final disaster of the First World War; the Empire overnight disintegrated into multiple states based on nationalism. Changes shaping the nature of the Holy Roman Empire took place during conferences in Rastatt and Regensburg. On 24 March 1803, the Imperial Recess was declared, which reduced the number of ecclesiastical states from 81 to only 3 and the free imperial cities from 51 to 6; this measure was aimed at replacing the old constitution of the Holy Roman Empire, but the actual consequence of the Imperial Recess was the end of the empire.
Taking this significant change into consideration, the Holy Roman Emperor Francis II created the title Emperor of Austria, for himself and his successors. In 1804, the Holy Roman Emperor Francis II, ruler of the lands of the Habsburg Monarchy, founded the Empire of Austria, in which all his lands were included. In doing so he created a formal overarching structure for the Habsburg Monarchy, which had functioned as a composite monarchy for about three hundred years, he did so because he foresaw either the end of the Holy Roman Empire, or the eventual accession as Holy Roman Emperor of Napoleon, who had earlier that year adopted the title of an Emperor of the French. To safeguard his dynasty's imperial status he adopted the additional hereditary title of Emperor of Austria. Apart from now being included in a new "Kaiserthum", the workings of the overarching structure and the status of its component lands at first stayed much the same as they had been under the composite monarchy that existed before 1804.
This was demonstrated by the status of the Kingdom of Hungary, a country that had never been a part of the Holy Roman Empire and which had always been considered a separate realm—a status, affirmed by Article X, added to Hungary's constitution in 1790 during the phase of the composite monarchy and described the state as a Regnum Independens. Hungary's affairs remained administered by its own institutions, thus no Imperial institutions were involved in its government. The fall and dissolution of the Holy Roman Empire was accelerated by French intervention in the Empire in September 1805. On 20 October 1805, an Austrian army led by General Karl Mack von Leiberich was defeated by French armies near the town of Ulm; the French victory resulted in the capture of many cannons. Napoleon's army won another victory at Austerlitz on 2 December 1805. Francis was forced into negotiations with the French from 4 to 6 December 1805, which concluded with an armistice on 6 December 1805; the French victories encouraged rulers of certain imperial territories to ally themselves with the French and assert their formal independence from the Empire.
On 10 December 1805, Maximilian IV Joseph, the prince-elector and Duke of Bavaria, proclaimed himself King, followed by the Duke of Württemberg Frederick III on 11 December. Charles Frederick, Margrave of Baden, was given the title of Grand Duke on 12 December; each of these new states became French allies. The Treaty of Pressburg between France and Austria, signed in Pressburg on 26 December, enlarged the territory of Napoleon's German allies at the expense of defeated Austria. Francis II agreed to the humiliating Treaty of Pressburg, which in practice meant the dissolution of the long-lived Holy Roman Empire and a reorganization under a Napoleonic imprint of the German territories lost in the process into a precursor state of what became modern Germany, those possessions nominally having been part of the Holy Roman Empire within the present boundaries of Germany, as well as other measures weakening Austria and the Habsburgs in other ways. Certain Austrian holdings in
A mercenary, sometimes known as a soldier of fortune, is an individual who takes part in military conflict for personal profit, is otherwise an outsider to the conflict, is not a member of any other official military. Mercenaries fight for money or other forms of payment rather than for political interests. In the last century, mercenaries have come to be seen as less entitled to protections by rules of war than non-mercenaries. Indeed, the Geneva Conventions declare that mercenaries are not recognized as legitimate combatants and do not have to be granted the same legal protections as captured soldiers of a regular army. In practice, whether or not a person is a mercenary may be a matter of degree, as financial and political interests may overlap, as was the case among Italian condottieri. Protocol Additional GC 1977 is a 1977 amendment protocol to the Geneva Conventions. Article 47 of the protocol provides the most accepted international definition of a mercenary, though not endorsed by some countries, including the United States.
The Protocol Additional to the Geneva Conventions of 12 August 1949, relating to the Protection of Victims of International Armed Conflicts, 8 June 1977 states: Art 47. Mercenaries 1. A mercenary shall not have the right to be a prisoner of war. 2. A mercenary is any person who: is recruited locally or abroad in order to fight in an armed conflict. All the criteria must be met, according to the Geneva Convention, for a combatant to be described as a mercenary. According to the GC III, a captured soldier must be treated as a lawful combatant and, therefore, as a protected person with prisoner-of-war status until facing a competent tribunal; that tribunal, using criteria in APGC77 or some equivalent domestic law, may decide that the soldier is a mercenary. At that juncture, the mercenary soldier becomes an unlawful combatant but still must be "treated with humanity and, in case of trial, shall not be deprived of the rights of fair and regular trial", being still covered by GC IV Art 5; the only possible exception to GC IV Art 5 is when he is a national of the authority imprisoning him, in which case he would not be a mercenary soldier as defined in APGC77 Art 47.d.
If, after a regular trial, a captured soldier is found to be a mercenary he can expect treatment as a common criminal and may face execution. As mercenary soldiers may not qualify as PoWs, they cannot expect repatriation at war's end; the best known post-World War II example of this was on 28 June 1976 when, at the end of the Luanda Trial, an Angolan court sentenced three Britons and an American to death and nine other mercenaries to prison terms ranging from 16 to 30 years. The four mercenaries sentenced to death were shot by a firing squad on 10 July 1976; the legal status of civilian contractors depends upon the nature of their work and their nationalities with respect to that of the combatants. If they have not "in fact, taken a direct part in the hostilities", they are not mercenaries but civilians who have non-combat support roles and are entitled to protection under the Third Geneva Convention. On 4 December 1989, the United Nations passed resolution 44/34, the International Convention against the Recruitment, Use and Training of Mercenaries.
It entered into force on 20 October 2001 and is known as the UN Mercenary Convention. Article 1 contains the definition of a mercenary. Article 1.1 is similar to Article 47 of Protocol I, however Article 1.2 broadens the definition to include a non-national recruited to overthrow a "Government or otherwise undermining the constitutional order of a State. Critics have argued that APGC77 Art. 47 are designed to cover the activities of mercenaries in post-colonial Africa and do not address adequately the use of private military companies by sovereign states. The situation during the Iraq War and the continuing occupation of Iraq after the United Nations Security Council-sanctioned hand-over of power to the Iraqi government shows the difficulty of defining a mercenary soldier. While the United States governed Iraq, no U. S. citizen working as an armed guard could be classified as a mercenary because he was a national of a Party to the conflict. With the hand-over of power to the Iraqi government, if one does not consider the coalition forces to be continuing parties to the conflict in Iraq, but that their soldiers are "sent by a State, not a Party to the conflict on official duty as a member of its armed forces" unless U.
S. citizens working as armed guards are lawfully certified residents of Iraq, i.e. "a resident of territory controlled by a Party to the conflict", they are involved with
Prussia was a prominent German state that originated in 1525 with a duchy centred on the region of Prussia on the southeast coast of the Baltic Sea. It was de facto dissolved by an emergency decree transferring powers of the Prussian government to German Chancellor Franz von Papen in 1932 and de jure by an Allied decree in 1947. For centuries, the House of Hohenzollern ruled Prussia expanding its size by way of an unusually well-organised and effective army. Prussia, with its capital in Königsberg and from 1701 in Berlin, decisively shaped the history of Germany. In 1871, German states united to create the German Empire under Prussian leadership. In November 1918, the monarchies were abolished and the nobility lost its political power during the German Revolution of 1918–19; the Kingdom of Prussia was thus abolished in favour of a republic—the Free State of Prussia, a state of Germany from 1918 until 1933. From 1933, Prussia lost its independence as a result of the Prussian coup, when the Nazi regime was establishing its Gleichschaltung laws in pursuit of a unitary state.
With the end of the Nazi regime, in 1945, the division of Germany into allied-occupation zones and the separation of its territories east of the Oder–Neisse line, which were incorporated into Poland and the Soviet Union, the State of Prussia ceased to exist de facto. Prussia existed de jure until its formal abolition by the Allied Control Council Enactment No. 46 of 25 February 1947. The name Prussia derives from the Old Prussians. In 1308, the Teutonic Knights conquered the region of Pomerelia with Gdańsk, their monastic state was Germanised through immigration from central and western Germany, and, in the south, it was Polonised by settlers from Masovia. The Second Peace of Thorn split Prussia into the western Royal Prussia, a province of Poland, the eastern part, from 1525 called the Duchy of Prussia, a fief of the Crown of Poland up to 1657; the union of Brandenburg and the Duchy of Prussia in 1618 led to the proclamation of the Kingdom of Prussia in 1701. Prussia entered the ranks of the great powers shortly after becoming a kingdom, exercised most influence in the 18th and 19th centuries.
During the 18th century it had a major say in many international affairs under the reign of Frederick the Great. During the 19th century, Chancellor Otto von Bismarck united the German principalities into a "Lesser Germany", which excluded the Austrian Empire. At the Congress of Vienna, which redrew the map of Europe following Napoleon's defeat, Prussia acquired rich new territories, including the coal-rich Ruhr; the country grew in influence economically and politically, became the core of the North German Confederation in 1867, of the German Empire in 1871. The Kingdom of Prussia was now so large and so dominant in the new Germany that Junkers and other Prussian élites identified more and more as Germans and less as Prussians; the Kingdom ended in 1918 along with other German monarchies that collapsed as a result of the German Revolution. In the Weimar Republic, the Free State of Prussia lost nearly all of its legal and political importance following the 1932 coup led by Franz von Papen. Subsequently, it was dismantled into Nazi German Gaue in 1935.
Some Prussian ministries were kept and Hermann Göring remained in his role as Minister President of Prussia until the end of World War II. Former eastern territories of Germany that made up a significant part of Prussia lost the majority of their German population after 1945 as the People's Republic of Poland and the Soviet Union both absorbed these territories and had most of its German inhabitants expelled by 1950. Prussia, deemed a bearer of militarism and reaction by the Allies, was abolished by an Allied declaration in 1947; the international status of the former eastern territories of Germany was disputed until the Treaty on the Final Settlement with Respect to Germany in 1990, while its return to Germany remains a topic among far right politicians, the Federation of Expellees and various political revisionists. The term Prussian has been used outside Germany, to emphasise professionalism, aggressiveness and conservatism of the Junker class of landed aristocrats in the East who dominated first Prussia and the German Empire.
The main coat of arms of Prussia, as well as the flag of Prussia, depicted a black eagle on a white background. The black and white national colours were used by the Teutonic Knights and by the Hohenzollern dynasty; the Teutonic Order wore a white coat embroidered with a black cross with gold insert and black imperial eagle. The combination of the black and white colours with the white and red Hanseatic colours of the free cities Bremen, Hamburg and Lübeck, as well as of Brandenburg, resulted in the black-white-red commercial flag of the North German Confederation, which became the flag of the German Empire in 1871. Suum cuique, the motto of the Order of the Black Eagle created by King Frederick I in 1701, was associated with the whole of Prussia; the Iron Cross, a military decoration created by King Frederick William III in 1813, was commonly associated with the country. The region populated by Baltic Old Prussians who were Christianised, became a favoured location for immigration by Germans, as well as Poles and Lithuanians along the border regions.
Before its abolition, the territory of the Kingdom of Prussia included the provinces of West Prussia.