Otto von Bismarck
Otto Eduard Leopold, Prince of Bismarck, Duke of Lauenburg, known as Otto von Bismarck, was a conservative Prussian statesman who dominated German and European affairs from the 1860s until 1890 and was the first Chancellor of the German Empire between 1871 and 1890. In 1862, King Wilhelm I appointed Bismarck as Minister President of Prussia, a position he would hold until 1890, with the exception of a short break in 1873, he provoked three short, decisive wars against Denmark and France. Following the victory against Austria, he abolished the supranational German Confederation and instead formed the North German Confederation as the first German national state in 1867, leading it as Federal Chancellor; this aligned the smaller North German states behind Prussia. Receiving the support of the independent South German states in the Confederation's defeat of France, he formed the German Empire in 1871, unifying Germany with himself as Imperial Chancellor, while retaining control of Prussia at the same time.
The new German nation excluded Austria, Prussia's main opponent for predominance among the German states. With that accomplished by 1871, he skillfully used balance of power diplomacy to maintain Germany's position in a Europe which, despite many disputes and war scares, remained at peace. For historian Eric Hobsbawm, it was Bismarck who "remained undisputed world champion at the game of multilateral diplomatic chess for twenty years after 1871, devoted himself and to maintaining peace between the powers". However, his annexation of Alsace-Lorraine gave new fuel to French nationalism and promoted Germanophobia in France; this helped set the stage for the First World War. Bismarck's diplomacy of realpolitik and powerful rule at home gained him the nickname the "Iron Chancellor". German unification and its rapid economic growth was the foundation to his foreign policy, he disliked colonialism but reluctantly built an overseas empire when it was demanded by both elite and mass opinion. Juggling a complex interlocking series of conferences and alliances, he used his diplomatic skills to maintain Germany's position and used the balance of power to keep Europe at peace in the 1870s and 1880s.
A master of complex politics at home, Bismarck created the first welfare state in the modern world, with the goal of gaining working class support that might otherwise go to his Socialist enemies. In the 1870s, he allied himself with the Liberals and fought the Catholic Church in what was called the Kulturkampf, he lost that battle as the Catholics responded by forming a powerful Centre party and using universal male suffrage to gain a bloc of seats. Bismarck reversed himself, ended the Kulturkampf, broke with the Liberals, imposed protective tariffs, formed a political alliance with the Centre Party to fight the Socialists. A devout Lutheran, he was loyal to his king, who argued with Bismarck but in the end supported him against the advice of his wife and his heir. While the Reichstag, Germany's parliament, was elected by universal male suffrage, it did not have much control of government policy. Bismarck distrusted democracy and ruled through a strong, well-trained bureaucracy with power in the hands of a traditional Junker elite that consisted of the landed nobility in eastern Prussia.
Under Wilhelm I, Bismarck controlled domestic and foreign affairs, until he was removed by the young Kaiser Wilhelm II in 1890, at the age of seventy-five. Bismarck – a Junker himself – was strong-willed and overbearing, but he could be polite and witty, he displayed a violent temper, he kept his power by melodramatically threatening resignation time and again, which cowed Wilhelm I. He possessed not only a long-term national and international vision but the short-term ability to juggle complex developments; as the leader of what historians call "revolutionary conservatism", Bismarck became a hero to German nationalists. Many historians praise him as a visionary, instrumental in uniting Germany and, once, accomplished, kept the peace in Europe through adroit diplomacy. Bismarck was born in Schönhausen, a wealthy family estate situated west of Berlin in the Prussian province of Saxony, his father, Karl Wilhelm Ferdinand von Bismarck, was a Junker estate owner and a former Prussian military officer.
He had two siblings: his younger sister Malwine. The world saw Bismarck as a typical Prussian Junker, an image that he encouraged by wearing military uniforms. Bismarck was well cosmopolitan with a gift for conversation. In addition to his native German, he was fluent in English, Italian and Russian. Bismarck was educated at Johann Ernst Plamann's elementary school, the Friedrich-Wilhelm and Graues Kloster secondary schools. From 1832 to 1833, he studied law at the University of Göttingen, where he was a member of the Corps Hannovera, enrolled at the University of Berlin. In 1838, while stationed as an army reservist in Greifswald, he studied agriculture at the University of Greifswald. At Göttingen, Bismarck befriended the American student John Lothrop Motley. Motley, who became an eminent historian and diplomat while remaining close to Bismarck, wrote a novel in 1839, Morton's Hope, or the Memoirs of a Provincial, about l
Decline and modernization of the Ottoman Empire
Beginning from the late eighteenth century, the Ottoman Empire faced challenges defending itself against foreign invasion and occupation. In response to foreign threats, the empire initiated a period of tremendous internal reform which came to be known as the Tanzimat, which succeeded in strengthening the Ottoman central state, despite the empire's precarious international position. Over the course of the nineteenth century, the Ottoman state became powerful and rationalized, exercising a greater degree of influence over its population than in any previous era; the process of reform and modernization in the empire began with the declaration of the Nizam-I Cedid during the reign of Sultan Selim III and was punctuated by several reform decrees, such as the Hatt-ı Şerif of Gülhane in 1839 and the Hatt-ı Hümayun in 1856. At the end of this period, marked with 1908, to a degree the Ottoman military became modernized and professionalized according to the model of Western European Armies; the period was followed by the dissolution of the Ottoman Empire.
The rise of nationalism swept through many countries during the 19th century, it affected territories within the Ottoman Empire. A burgeoning national consciousness, together with a growing sense of ethnic nationalism, made nationalistic thought one of the most significant Western ideas imported to the Ottoman Empire; the empire was forced to deal with nationalism from both beyond its borders. The number of revolutionary, secret societies which turned into political parties during the next period rose dramatically. Uprisings in Ottoman territory had many far-reaching consequences during the 19th century and determined much of the Ottoman policy during the early 20th century. Many Ottoman ruling elite questioned whether the policies of the state were to blame: some felt that the sources of ethnic conflict were external, unrelated to issues of governance. While this era was not without some successes, the ability of the Ottoman state to have any effect on ethnic uprisings was called into question.
The Russian extension in this century developed with the main theme of supporting independence of Ottomans' former provinces and bringing all of the Slav peoples of the Balkans under Bulgaria or using Armenians in the east sets the stage. At the end of the century from Russian perspective; that alarmed the Great Powers. After the Congress of Berlin the Russian expansion was controlled through stopping the expansion of Bulgaria; the Russian public felt that at the end of Congress of Berlin thousands of Russian soldiers had died for nothing. The military of the Ottoman Empire remained an effective fighting force until the second half of the eighteenth century, when it suffered a catastrophic defeat against Russia in the 1768-74 war. Selim III came to the throne with an ambitious effort in military reforms in 1789, he failed. Selim III was replaced by Mahmud II in 1808, his first task was to ally with the Janissaries in order to break the power of the provincial governors. He turned on the Janissaries and removed them from power during Auspicious Incident in 1826.
Efforts for a new system began following the Auspicious incident. Economic historian Paul Bairoch argues that free trade contributed to deindustrialization in the Ottoman Empire. In contrast to the protectionism of China and Spain, the Ottoman Empire had a liberal trade policy, open to foreign imports; this has origins in capitulations of the Ottoman Empire, dating back to the first commercial treaties signed with France in 1536 and taken further with capitulations in 1673 and 1740, which lowered duties to 3% for imports and exports. The liberal Ottoman policies were praised by British economists such as John Ramsay McCulloch in his Dictionary of Commerce, but criticized by British politicians such as Prime Minister Benjamin Disraeli, who cited the Ottoman Empire as "an instance of the injury done by unrestrained competition" in the 1846 Corn Laws debate: There has been free trade in Turkey, what has it produced? It has destroyed some of the finest manufactures of the world; as late as 1812 these manufactures existed.
That was the consequences of competition in Turkey, its effects have been as pernicious as the effects of the contrary principle in Spain. The stagnation and reform of the Ottoman Empire ended with the dismemberment of Ottoman Classical Army; the issue during the decline and modernization of the Ottoman Empire was to create a military that could win wars and bring security to its subjects. That goal took multiple Sultans with multiple reorganizations during this period. At the end of this period, with the Second Constitutional Era in 1908, -with a degree of- Ottoman military became modernized and professionalized in the form of European Armies. Mahmud II had to deal with multiple issues inherited from generations past; these issues lasted all through his reign. Shortly, the Eastern Question with Russia and France, military problems arising from mutinous Janissaries and factious Ulemas, he faced numerous internal conflicts with Egyptians, Serbians, Albanians and Syrians, had administrative problems from rebellious Pashas, who would fain have founded new kingdoms on the ruins of the House of Osman.
Mahmud understood the growing problems of the state and the approaching overthrow of the monarchy, began to deal with the problems as he saw them. For example, he closed the Court of Confiscations, took away much of the power of the pashas, he set an example of reform by regu
The first Anglo-Japanese Alliance was signed in London at Lansdowne House, on 30 January 1902, by Lord Lansdowne and Hayashi Tadasu. A diplomatic milestone that saw an end to Britain's splendid isolation, the alliance was renewed and expanded in scope twice, in 1905 and 1911, before its demise in 1921, it was terminated in 1923. The possibility of an alliance between United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland and the Empire of Japan had been canvassed since 1895, when Britain refused to join the Triple Intervention of France and Russia against the Japanese occupation of the Liaodong Peninsula. While this single event was an unstable basis for an alliance, the case was strengthened by the support Britain had given Japan in its drive towards modernisation and their co-operative efforts to put down the Boxer Rebellion. Newspapers of both countries voiced support for such an alliance; the 1894 Anglo-Japanese Treaty of Commerce and Navigation had paved the way for equal relations and the possibility of an alliance.
In the end, the common interest fuelling the alliance was opposition to Russian expansion. This was made clear as early as the 1890s, when the British diplomat Cecil Spring Rice identified that Britain and Japan working in concert was the only way to challenge Russian power in the region. Negotiations began. Both countries had their reservations. Britain was cautious about abandoning its policy of "splendid isolation", wary of antagonising Russia, unwilling to act on the treaty if Japan were to attack the United States. There were factions in the Japanese government that still hoped for a compromise with Russia, including the powerful political figure Hirobumi Itō, who had served four terms as Prime Minister of Japan, it was thought that friendship within Asia would be more amenable to the US, uncomfortable with the rise of Japan as a power. Furthermore, Britain was unwilling to protect Japanese interests in Korea and the Japanese were unwilling to support Britain in India. Hayashi and Lord Lansdowne began their discussions in July 1901, disputes over Korea and India delayed them until November.
At this point, Hirobumi Itō requested a delay in negotiations in order to attempt a reconciliation with Russia. He was unsuccessful, Britain expressed concerns over duplicity on Japan's part, so Hayashi hurriedly re-entered negotiations in 1902; the treaty contained six articles: Article 1 The High Contracting parties, having mutually recognised the independence of China and Korea, declare themselves to be uninfluenced by aggressive tendencies in either country, having in view, their special interests, of which those of Great Britain relate principally to China, whilst Japan, in addition to the interests which she possesses in China, is interested in a peculiar degree, politically as well as commercially and industrially in Korea, the High Contracting parties recognise that it will be admissible for either of them to take such measures as may be indispensable in order to safeguard those interests if threatened either by the aggressive action of any other Power, or by disturbances arising in China or Korea, necessitating the intervention of either of the High Contracting parties for the protection of the lives and properties of its subjects.
Article 2 Declaration of neutrality if either signatory becomes involved in war through Article 1. Article 3 Promise of support if either signatory becomes involved in war with more than one Power. Article 4 Signatories promise not to enter into separate agreements with other Powers to the prejudice of this alliance. Article 5 The signatories promise to communicate frankly and with each other when any of the interests affected by this treaty are in jeopardy. Article 6 Treaty to remain in force for five years and at one years' notice, unless notice was given at the end of the fourth year. Articles 2 and 3 were most crucial concerning mutual defence; the treaty laid out an acknowledgement of Japanese interests in Korea without obligating Britain to help should a Russo-Japanese conflict arise on this account. Japan was not obligated to defend British interests in India. Although written using careful and clear language, the two sides understood the Treaty differently. Britain saw it as a gentle warning to Russia.
From that point on those of a moderate stance refused to accept a compromise over the issue of Korea. Extremists saw it as an open invitation for imperial expansion; the alliance was renewed and extended in scope twice, in 1905 and 1911. This was prompted by British suspicions about Japanese intentions in South Asia. Japan appeared tolerating visits by figures such as Rash Behari Bose; the July 1905 renegotiations allowed for Japanese support of British interests in India and British support for Japanese progress into Korea. By November of that year Korea was a Japanese protectorate, in February 1906 Itō Hirobumi was posted as the Resident General to Seoul. At the renewal in 1911, Japanese diplomat Komura Jutarō played a key role to restore Japan's tariff autonomy; the alliance was announced on 12 February 1902. In response, Russia sought to form alliances with Germany, which Germany declined. On 16 March 1902, a mutual pact was signed between Russia. China and the United States were opposed to the alliance.
The nature o
The Balkans known as the Balkan Peninsula, is a geographic area in southeastern Europe with various definitions and meanings, including geopolitical and historical. The region takes its name from the Balkan Mountains that stretch throughout the whole of Bulgaria from the Serbian-Bulgarian border to the Black Sea coast; the Balkan Peninsula is bordered by the Adriatic Sea on the northwest, the Ionian Sea on the southwest, the Aegean Sea in the south and southeast, the Black Sea on the east and northeast. The northern border of the peninsula is variously defined; the highest point of the Balkans is 2,925 metres, in the Rila mountain range. The concept of the Balkan peninsula was created by the German geographer August Zeune in 1808, who mistakenly considered the Balkan Mountains the dominant mountain system of Southeast Europe spanning from the Adriatic Sea to the Black Sea; the term of Balkan Peninsula was a synonym for European Turkey in the 19th century, the former provinces of the Ottoman Empire in Southeast Europe.
It had a geopolitical rather than a geographical definition, further promoted during the creation of the Kingdom of Yugoslavia in the early 20th century. The definition of the Balkan peninsula's natural borders do not coincide with the technical definition of a peninsula and hence modern geographers reject the idea of a Balkan peninsula, while scholars discuss the Balkans as a region; the term has acquired a stigmatized and pejorative meaning related to the process of Balkanization, hence the rather used alternative term for the region is Southeast Europe. The word Balkan comes from Ottoman Turkish balkan'chain of wooded mountains'; the origin of the Turkic word is obscure. From classical antiquity through the Middle Ages, the Balkan Mountains were called by the local Thracian name Haemus. According to Greek mythology, the Thracian king Haemus was turned into a mountain by Zeus as a punishment and the mountain has remained with his name. A reverse name scheme has been suggested. D. Dechev considers that Haemus is derived from a Thracian word *saimon,'mountain ridge'.
A third possibility is that "Haemus" derives from the Greek word "haema" meaning'blood'. The myth relates to a fight between the monster/titan Typhon. Zeus injured Typhon with a thunder bolt and Typhon's blood fell on the mountains, from which they got their name; the earliest mention of the name appears in an early 14th-century Arab map, in which the Haemus mountains are referred to as Balkan. The first attested time the name "Balkan" was used in the West for the mountain range in Bulgaria was in a letter sent in 1490 to Pope Innocent VIII by Buonaccorsi Callimaco, an Italian humanist and diplomat; the Ottomans first mention it in a document dated from 1565. There has been no other documented usage of the word to refer to the region before that, although other Turkic tribes had settled in or were passing through the Peninsula. There is a claim about an earlier Bulgar Turkic origin of the word popular in Bulgaria, however it is only an unscholarly assertion; the word was used by the Ottomans in Rumelia in its general meaning of mountain, as in Kod̲j̲a-Balkan, Čatal-Balkan, Ungurus-Balkani̊, but it was applied to the Haemus mountain.
The name is still preserved in Central Asia with the Balkan Daglary and the Balkan Province of Turkmenistan. English traveler John Morritt introduced this term into the English literature at the end of the 18th-century, other authors started applying the name to the wider area between the Adriatic and the Black Sea; the concept of the "Balkans" was created by the German geographer August Zeune in 1808, who mistakenly considered it as the dominant central mountain system of Southeast Europe spanning from the Adriatic Sea to the Black Sea. During the 1820s, "Balkan became the preferred although not yet exclusive term alongside Haemus among British travelers... Among Russian travelers not so burdened by classical toponymy, Balkan was the preferred term"; the term was not used in geographical literature until the mid-19th century because then scientists like Carl Ritter warned that only the part South of the Balkan Mountains can be considered as a peninsula and considered it to be renamed as "Greek peninsula".
Other prominent geographers who didn't agree with Zeune were Hermann Wagner, Theobald Fischer, Marion Newbigin, Albrecht Penck, while Austrian diplomat Johann Georg von Hahn in 1869 for the same territory used the term Südostereuropäische Halbinsel. Another reason it was not accepted as the definition of European Turkey had a similar land extent. However, after the Congress of Berlin there was a political need for a new term and the Balkans was revitalized, but in the maps the northern border was in Serbia and Montenegro without Greece, while Yugoslavian maps included Croatia and Bosnia; the term Balkan Peninsula was a synonym for European Turkey, the political borders of former Ottoman Empire provinces. The usage of the term changed in the end of the 19th and beginning of the 20th century when was embraced by Serbian geographers, most prominently by Jovan Cvijić, it was done with political reasoning as affirmation for Serbian nationalism on the whole territory of the South Slavs, included anthropological and ethnological studies of the South Slavs through which were claimed various nationalistic and racistic theories.
Through such policies and Yugoslavian maps the term was elevated to the modern status of
Industrial warfare is a period in the history of warfare ranging from the early 19th century and the start of the Industrial Revolution to the beginning of the Atomic Age, which saw the rise of nation-states, capable of creating and equipping large armies and air forces, through the process of industrialisation. The era featured mass-conscripted armies, rapid transportation and wireless communications, the concept of total war. In terms of technology, this era saw the rise of rifled breech-loading infantry weapons capable of high rates of fire, high-velocity breech-loading artillery, chemical weapons, armoured warfare, metal warships and aircraft. One of the main features of industrial warfare is the concept of "total war"; the term was coined during World War I by Erich Ludendorff, which called for the complete mobilization and subordination of all resources, including policy and social systems, to the German war effort. It has come to mean waging warfare with absolute ruthlessness, its most identifiable legacy today has been the reintroduction of civilians and civilian infrastructure as targets in destroying the enemy's ability to engage in war.
There are several reasons for the rise of total warfare in the 19th century. The main one is industrialization; as countries' capital and natural resources grew, it became clear that some forms of warfare demanded more resources than others. The greater cost of warfare became evident. An industrialized nation could distinguish and choose the intensity of warfare that it wished to engage in. Additionally, warfare was becoming more mechanized and required greater infrastructure. Combatants could no longer live off the land, but required an extensive support network of people behind the lines to keep them fed and armed; this required the mobilization of the home front. Modern concepts like propaganda were first used to boost production and maintain morale, while rationing took place to provide more war materiel; the earliest modern example of total war was the American Civil War. Union generals Ulysses S. Grant and William Tecumseh Sherman were convinced that, if the North was to be victorious, the Confederacy's strategic and psychological ability to wage war had to be definitively crushed.
They believed that to break the backbone of the South, the North had to employ scorched earth tactics, or as Sherman called it, "Hard War". Sherman's advance through Georgia and the Carolinas was characterized by widespread destruction of civilian supplies and infrastructure. In contrast to conflicts, the damage done by Sherman was entirely limited to property destruction. In Georgia alone, Sherman claimed he and his men had caused $100,000,000 in damages. Conscription is the compulsory enrollment of civilians into military service. Conscription allowed the French Republic to form La Grande Armée, what Napoleon Bonaparte called "the nation in arms", which battled European professional armies. Conscription when the conscripts are being sent to foreign wars that do not directly affect the security of the nation, has been politically contentious in democracies. For instance, during World War I, bitter political disputes broke out in Canada, Newfoundland and New Zealand over conscription. Canada had a political dispute over conscription during World War II.
Both South Africa and Australia put limits on where conscripts could fight in WWII. Mass protests against conscription to fight the Vietnam War occurred in several countries in the late 1960s. In developed nations, the increasing emphasis on technological firepower and better-trained fighting forces, the sheer unlikelihood of a conventional military assault on most developed nations, as well as memories of the contentiousness of the Vietnam War experience, make mass conscription unlikely in the foreseeable future. Russia, as well as many smaller nations such as Switzerland, retain conscript armies. Prior to the invention of the motorized transport, combatants were transported from by wagons, horses and by marching. With the advent of locomotives, large groups of combatants and equipment were able to be transported faster and in larger numbers. To counter this, an opposing force would destroy rail lines to hinder their enemies' movements. General Sherman's men during the American Civil War, would destroy tracks, heat the rails, wrap them around trees.
The mass transportation of combatants was further revolutionized with the advent of the internal combustion engine and the automobile. Combined with the widespread use of the machine gun, the horse, after millennia of use, was supplanted in its war time role. During both WWI and WWII, trucks were used to carry combatants and materiel, while cars and jeeps were used to scout enemy positions; the mechanization of infantry occurred during WWII. The tank, a product of World War I invented by the British to break through trenches while withstanding machine gun fire, while discounted by many, came into its own. Tanks evolved from thin-skinned, lumbering vehicles into fast, powerful war machines of various types that dominated the battlefield and allowed the Germans to conquer most of Europe; as a result of the tank's evolution, a number of armored transport vehicles appeared, such as armoured personnel carriers and amphibious vehicles. After the war ended, armored transports continued to evolve; the armored car and train declined in use becoming relegated to military and civilian use as transportation for VIPs.
Infantry fighting vehicles rose to prominence with the creation of th
The Franco-Russian Alliance, or Russo-French Rapprochement, was an alliance formed by the agreements of 1891–93. The strengthening of the German Empire, the creation of the Triple Alliance of 1882, the exacerbation of Franco-German and Russo-German contradictions at the end of the 1880s led to a common foreign policy and mutual strategic military interests between France and Russia; the development of financial ties between the two countries created the economic prerequisites for the Russo-French Alliance. The history of the alliance dates to the beginning of the 1870s, to the contradictions engendered by the Franco-Prussian War and the Treaty of Frankfurt of 1871; the Russian government had supported France during the war scare of 1875 when Russian and British protests forced Germany to stop threatening an attack on France. In 1876, the German chancellor, Otto von Bismarck, attempted unsuccessfully to obtain from Russia a guarantee to preserve the territory of Alsace-Lorraine as part of Germany in exchange for unconditional support by Germany for Russian policy in the East.
In 1877, during the new Franco-German war scare, Russia maintained friendly relations with France. However, after the Berlin Congress of 1878, French diplomacy, in aiming at a rapprochement with Great Britain and Germany, assumed a hostile position vis-à-vis Russia. France’s alienation from Russia and her policy of colonial seizures lasted until 1885 when the Franco-German contradictions became heightened after the French defeat in Annam. Early in 1887, new complications arose in Franco-German relations. France appealed to the Russian government for aid. In concluding the so-called Reinsurance Treaty with Germany in 1887, Russia insisted on maintaining for France the same conditions that Germany had stipulated for its ally, Austria. At the end of the 1880s, Russo-German economic discrepancies grew stronger; the Russo-French political rapprochement contributed to the influx of French capital into Russia. At the end of the 1880s and the beginning of the 1890s, Russia received a number of large loans from France.
The deterioration of Russo-German relations, the resurrection of the Triple Alliance in 1891, the rumors that Great Britain would join the alliance laid the grounds for the conclusion of a political agreement between Russia and France. During a visit by a French squadron to Kronstadt in July 1891, the agreement of 1891 was concluded in the form of an exchange of letters between the ministers of foreign affairs. France was interested more than Russia in a military alliance and endeavored to supplement the 1891 agreement with military obligations; as a result of the negotiations, the representatives of the Russian and French general staffs signed a military convention on August 5, 1892, which provided for mutual military aid in the event of a German attack. By an exchange of letters between December 19, 1893, December 23, 1893, both governments announced their ratification of the military convention; this formalized the Russo-French military-political alliance. It was a response to the formation of a military bloc headed by Germany.
In Europe, two opposing hostile imperialist blocs had formed. Relying on Russian support, France intensified its colonial policy. After the Fashoda Incident of 1898 with Great Britain, it endeavored more to strengthen the alliance with Russia; the alliance with France facilitated the tsarist government’s expansion into Manchuria in the 1890s. During the preparatory period and the first years of the existence of the Russo-French Alliance, the determining role was played by Russia, but in time the situation altered. By receiving new loans from France, Russian tsarism fell into financial dependence on French imperialism. Prior to World War I, the cooperation of the general staffs of both countries assumed closer forms. In 1912 a Russo-French naval convention was signed. Russia and France entered the war united by the treaty of alliance; this had a significant effect on the course and outcome of the war since it forced Germany from the first days of the war to fight on two fronts. This led to the defeat of Germany the battle of the Marne, to the collapse of the Schlieffen Plan, to the defeat of Germany.
The Russo-French Alliance was nullified by the Soviet government in 1917. Causes of World War I Foreign alliances of France French entry into World War I Historiography of the causes of World War I International relations of the Great Powers Triple Entente Albrecht-Carrié, René. A Diplomatic History of Europe Since the Congress of Vienna Hamel, Catherine. La commémoration de l’alliance franco-russe: La création d’une culture matérielle populaire, 1890-1914; the fateful alliance: France and the coming of the First World War online free to borrow. Keiger, John F. V.. France and the origins of the First World War. Macmillan. Keiger, J. F. V. France and the World since 1870 Mansergh, Nicholas; the Coming of the First World War. London: Longmans Green and Co. Rich, Norman. Great power diplomacy, 1814-1914 pp 216-62, 391-407. Taylor, A. J. P; the struggle for mastery in Europe, 1848-1918, pp 325-345 The original text of the agreement
The Meiji period, or Meiji era, is an era of Japanese history which extended from October 23, 1868 to July 30, 1912. This era represents the first half of the Empire of Japan, during which period the Japanese people moved from being an isolated feudal society at risk of colonisation by European powers to the new paradigm of a modern, industrialised nationstate and emergent great power, influenced by Western scientific, philosophical, political and aesthetic ideas; as a result of such wholesale adoption of radically-different ideas, the changes to Japan were profound, affected its social structure, internal politics, economy and foreign relations. The period corresponded to the reign of Emperor Meiji and was succeeded upon the accession of Emperor Taishō by the Taishō period. On February 3, 1867, the 14-year-old Prince Mutsuhito succeeded his father, Emperor Kōmei, to the Chrysanthemum Throne as the 122nd emperor. On November 9, 1867, then-shōgun Tokugawa Yoshinobu tendered his resignation to the Emperor, formally stepped down ten days later.
Imperial restoration occurred the next year on January 3, 1868, with the formation of the new government. The fall of Edo in the summer of 1868 marked the end of the Tokugawa shogunate, a new era, was proclaimed; the first reform was the promulgation of the Five Charter Oath in 1868, a general statement of the aims of the Meiji leaders to boost morale and win financial support for the new government. Its five provisions consisted of: Establishment of deliberative assemblies. Implicit in the Charter Oath was an end to exclusive political rule by the bakufu, a move toward more democratic participation in government. To implement the Charter Oath, a rather short-lived constitution with eleven articles was drawn up in June 1868. Besides providing for a new Council of State, legislative bodies, systems of ranks for nobles and officials, it limited office tenure to four years, allowed public balloting, provided for a new taxation system, ordered new local administrative rules; the Meiji government assured the foreign powers that it would follow the old treaties negotiated by the bakufu and announced that it would act in accordance with international law.
Mutsuhito, to reign until 1912, selected a new reign title—Meiji, or Enlightened Rule—to mark the beginning of a new era in Japanese history. To further dramatize the new order, the capital was relocated from Kyoto, where it had been situated since 794, to Tokyo, the new name for Edo. In a move critical for the consolidation of the new regime, most daimyōs voluntarily surrendered their land and census records to the Emperor in the abolition of the Han system, symbolizing that the land and people were under the Emperor's jurisdiction. Confirmed in their hereditary positions, the daimyo became governors, the central government assumed their administrative expenses and paid samurai stipends; the han were replaced with prefectures in 1871, authority continued to flow to the national government. Officials from the favored former han, such as Satsuma, Chōshū, Hizen staffed the new ministries. Old court nobles, lower-ranking but more radical samurai, replaced bakufu appointees and daimyo as a new ruling class appeared.
In as much as the Meiji Restoration had sought to return the Emperor to a preeminent position, efforts were made to establish a Shinto-oriented state much like it was 1,000 years earlier. Since Shinto and Buddhism had molded into a syncretic belief in the prior one-thousand years and Buddhism had been connected with the shogunate, this involved the separation of Shinto and Buddhism and the associated destruction of various Buddhist temples and related violence. Furthermore, a new State Shinto had to be constructed for the purpose. In 1871, the Office of Shinto Worship was established, ranking above the Council of State in importance; the kokutai ideas of the Mito school were embraced, the divine ancestry of the Imperial House was emphasized. The government supported a small but important move. Although the Office of Shinto Worship was demoted in 1872, by 1877 the Home Ministry controlled all Shinto shrines and certain Shinto sects were given state recognition. Shinto was released from Buddhist administration and its properties restored.
Although Buddhism suffered from state sponsorship of Shinto, it had its own resurgence. Christianity was legalized, Confucianism remained an important ethical doctrine. However, Japanese thinkers identified with Western ideology and methods. A major proponent of representative government was Itagaki Taisuke, a powerful Tosa leader who had resigned from the Council of State over the Korean affair in 1873. Itagaki sought peaceful, rather than rebellious, he started a school and a movement aimed at establishing a constitutional monarchy and a legislative assembly. Such movements were called People's Rights Movement. Itagaki and others wrote the Tosa Memorial in 1874, criticizing the unbridled power of the oligarchy and calling for the immediate establishment of representative government. Between 1871 and 1873, a series of land and tax laws were enacted as the basis for modern fiscal policy. Private ownership was legalized, deeds were issued, lands were assessed at fair market value with taxes paid in cash rather than in k