Congress of Berlin
The Congress of Berlin was a meeting of the representatives of six great powers of the time, the Ottoman Empire and four Balkan states. It aimed at determining the territories of the states in the Balkan peninsula following the Russo-Turkish War of 1877–78 and came to an end with the signing of the Treaty of Berlin, which replaced the preliminary Treaty of San Stefano, signed three months earlier between Russia and the Ottoman Empire. German Chancellor Otto von Bismarck, who led the Congress, undertook to stabilise the Balkans, recognise the reduced power of the Ottoman Empire and balance the distinct interests of Britain and Austria-Hungary. At the same time, he tried to diminish Russian gains in the region and to prevent the rise of a Greater Bulgaria; as a result, Ottoman lands in Europe declined Bulgaria was established as an independent principality inside the Ottoman Empire, Eastern Rumelia was restored to the Turks under a special administration and the region of Macedonia was returned outright to the Turks, who promised reform.
Romania achieved full independence. Serbia and Montenegro gained complete independence but with smaller territories, with Austria-Hungary occupying the Sandžak region. Austria-Hungary took over Bosnia and Herzegovina, Britain took over Cyprus; the results were first hailed as a great achievement in stabilisation. However, most of the participants were not satisfied, grievances on the results festered until they exploded in the First and the Second Balkan wars in 1912–1913 and World War I in 1914. Serbia and Greece made gains, but all received far less than they thought that they deserved; the Ottoman Empire called the "sick man of Europe", was humiliated and weakened, which made it more liable to domestic unrest and more vulnerable to attack. Although Russia had been victorious in the war that occasioned the conference, it was humiliated there and resented its treatment. Austria gained a great deal of territory, which angered the South Slavs, led to decades of tensions in Bosnia and Herzegovina.
Bismarck became the target of hatred by Russian nationalists and Pan-Slavists, he would find that he had tied Germany too to Austria-Hungary in the Balkans. In the long run, tensions between Russia and Austria-Hungary intensified, as did the nationality question in the Balkans; the congress was aimed at revising the Treaty of San Stefano and at keeping Constantinople within Ottoman hands. It disavowed Russia's victory over the decaying Ottoman Empire in the Russo-Turkish War; the congress returned territories to the Ottoman Empire that the previous treaty had given to the Principality of Bulgaria, most notably Macedonia, thus setting up a strong revanchist demand in Bulgaria, leading in 1912 to the First Balkan War. In the decades leading up to the congress and the Balkans had been gripped by Pan-Slavism, a movement to unite all the Balkan Slavs under one rule; that desire, which evolved to the Pan-Germanism and Pan-Italianism, which had resulted in two unifications, took different forms in the various Slavic nations.
In Imperial Russia, Pan-Slavism meant the creation of a unified Slavic state, under Russian direction, a byword for Russian conquest of the Balkan peninsula. The realisation of the goal would have Russian control of the Dardanelles and the Bosphorus, thus giving Russia economic control of the Black Sea and increasing its geopolitical power. In the Balkans, Pan-Slavism meant unifying the Balkan Slavs under the rule of a particular Balkan state, but the state, meant to serve as the locus for unification was not always clear, as initiative wafted between Serbia and Bulgaria; the creation of a Bulgarian exarch by the Ottomans in 1870 had been intended to separate the Bulgarians religiously from the Greek patriarch and politically from Serbia. From the Balkan point of view, unification of the peninsula needed both a Piedmont as a base and a corresponding France as a sponsor. Though the views of how Balkan politics should proceed differed, both began with the deposition of the sultan as ruler of the Balkans and the ousting of the Ottomans from Europe.
How and whether, to proceed would be the major question to be answered at the Congress of Berlin. The Balkans were a major stage for competition between the European great powers in the second half of the 19th century. Britain and Russia both had interests in the fate of the Balkans. Russia was interested in the region, both ideologically, as a pan-Slavist unifier, to secure greater control of the Mediterranean. Furthermore, the Unifications of Italy and Germany had stymied the ability of a third European power, Austria-Hungary, to further expand its domain to the southwest. Germany, as the most powerful continental nation after the 1871 Franco-Prussian War had little direct interest in the settlement and so was the only power that could mediate the Balkan question. Russia and Austria-Hungary, the two powers that were most invested in the fate of the Balkans, were allied with Germany in the conservative League of Three Emperors, founded to preserve the monarchies of Continental Europe; the Congress of Berlin was thus a dispute among supposed allies of Bismarck and his German Empire, the arbiter of the discussion, would thus have to choose before the end of the congress one of their allies to support.
That decision was to have direct consequences on the future of European geopolitics. Ottoman brutality in t
History of the United States (1865–1918)
The history of the United States from 1865 until 1918 covers the Reconstruction Era, the Gilded Age, the Progressive Era, includes the rise of industrialization and the resulting surge of immigration in the United States. This article focuses on political and diplomatic history; this period of rapid economic growth and soaring prosperity in the North and the West saw the U. S. become the world's dominant economic and agricultural power. The average annual income of non-farm workers grew by 75% from 1865 to 1900, grew another 33% by 1918. With a decisive victory in 1865 over Southern secessionists in the Civil War, the United States became a united and powerful nation with a strong national government. Reconstruction brought the end of legalized slavery plus citizenship for the former slaves, but their new-found political power was rolled back within a decade, they became second-class citizens under a "Jim Crow" system of pervasive segregation that would stand for the next 80–90 years. Politically, during the Third Party System and Fourth Party System the nation was dominated by Republicans.
After 1900 and the assassination of President William McKinley, the Progressive Era brought political and social reforms. The Progressives worked through new middle-class organizations to fight against the corruption and behind-the-scenes power of entrenched, state political party organizations and big-city "machines", they demanded—and won—women's right to vote, the nationwide prohibition of alcohol 1920-1933. In an unprecedented wave of European immigration, 27.5 million new arrivals between 1865 and 1918 provided the labor base necessary for the expansion of industry and agriculture, as well as the population base for most of fast-growing urban America. By the late nineteenth century, the United States had become a leading global industrial power, building on new technologies, an expanding railroad network, abundant natural resources such as coal, timber and farmland, to usher in the Second Industrial Revolution. There were two important wars; the U. S. defeated Spain in 1898, which unexpectedly brought a small empire.
Cuba was given independence, as well as the Philippines. Puerto Rico became permanent U. S. possessions, as did Alaska. The independent Republic of Hawaii voluntarily joined the U. S. as a territory in 1898. The United States tried and failed to broker a peace settlement for World War I entered the war after Germany launched a submarine campaign against U. S. merchant ships that were supplying Germany's enemy countries. The publicly stated goals were to uphold American honor, crush German militarism, reshape the postwar world. After a slow mobilization, the U. S. helped bring about a decisive Allied Forces victory by supplying badly needed financing and millions of fresh and eager soldiers. Reconstruction was the period from 1863 to 1877, in which the federal government temporarily took control—one by one—of the Southern states of the Confederacy. Before his assassination in April 1865, President Abraham Lincoln had announced moderate plans for reconstruction to re-integrate the former Confederates as fast as possible.
Lincoln set up the Freedmen's Bureau in March 1865, to aid former slaves in finding education, health care, employment. The final abolition of slavery was achieved by the Thirteenth Amendment, ratified in December 1865. However, Lincoln was opposed by the Radical Republicans within his own party who feared that the former Confederates would never give up on slavery and Confederate nationalism, would always try to reinstate them behind-the-scenes; as a result, the Radical Republicans tried to impose legal restrictions that would strip most ex-rebels' rights to vote and hold elected office. The Radicals were opposed by Lincoln's Vice President and successor, Tennessee Democrat Andrew Johnson. However, the Radicals won the critical elections of 1866, winning enough seats in Congress to override President Johnson's vetoes of such legislation, they successfully impeached President Johnson, removed him from office in 1868. Meanwhile, they gave the South's "freedmen" federal legal protections; the Radicals' reconstruction plans took effect in 1867 under the supervision of the U.
S. Army, allowing a Republican coalition of Freedmen and Carpetbaggers, to take control of Southern state governments, they ratified the Fourteenth Amendment, giving enormous new powers to the federal courts to deal with justice at the state level. These state governments borrowed to build railroads and public schools, increasing taxation rates; the backlash of fierce opposition to these policies drove most of the Scalawags out of the Republican Party and into the Democratic Party. President Ulysses S. Grant enforced civil rights protections for African-Americans that were being challenged in South Carolina and Louisiana; the Fifteenth Amendment was ratified in 1870 giving African-Americans the right to vote in American elections. U. S. Representative Stevens was one of the major policymakers regarding Reconstruction, obtained a House vote of impeachment against President Andrew Johnson. Hans Trefousse, his leading biographer, concludes that Stevens "was one of the most influential representatives to serve in Congress
Treaty of San Stefano
The 1878 Preliminary Treaty of San Stefano was a treaty between Russia and the Ottoman Empire signed at San Stefano a village west of Constantinople, on 3 March 1878 by Count Nicholas Pavlovich Ignatiev and Aleksandr Nelidov on behalf of the Russian Empire and Foreign Minister Safvet Pasha and Ambassador to Germany Sadullah Bey on behalf of the Ottoman Empire. The treaty ended the Russo-Turkish War, 1877–78. According to the official Russian position, by signing the treaty, Russia had never intended anything more than a temporary rough draft, so as to enable a final settlement with the other Great Powers; the treaty provided for the creation of an autonomous Principality of Bulgaria following 500 years of Ottoman domination. The day the treaty was signed, 3 March 1878, is celebrated as Liberation Day in Bulgaria. However, the enlarged Bulgaria envisioned by the treaty alarmed neighboring states as well as France and Great Britain; as a result, it was never implemented, being superseded by the Treaty of Berlin following the Congress of the same name that took place three months later.
The treaty established the autonomous self-governing Principality of Bulgaria, with a Christian government and the right to keep an army. Though still de jure tributary to Turkey, the Principality de facto functioned as independent nation, its territory included the plain between the Danube and the Balkan mountain range, the region of Sofia and Vranje in the Morava valley, Northern Thrace, parts of Eastern Thrace and nearly all of Macedonia. Bulgaria would thus have had direct access to the Mediterranean; this carried the potential of Russian ships using Bulgarian Mediterranean ports as naval bases - which the other Great Powers disliked. A prince elected by the people, approved by Turkey, recognized by the Great Powers was to take the helm of the country. A council of Bulgarian noblemen was to draft a constitution. Ottoman troops were to withdraw from Bulgaria. Under the treaty, Montenegro more than doubled its territory, acquiring Ottoman-controlled areas including the cities of Nikšić, Bar, the Ottoman Empire recognized its independence.
Serbia became independent. Turkey recognized the independence of Romania. Romania ceded Southern Bessarabia in a forced exchange. In exchange for the war reparations, the Porte ceded Armenian and Georgian territories in the Caucasus to Russia, including Ardahan, Batum, Olti and Alashkert. Additionally, it ceded Northern Dobruja, which Russia handed to Romania in exchange for Southern Bessarabia; the Vilayet of Bosnia was supposed to become an autonomous province like Serbia was. The Straits — the Bosporus and the Dardanelles — were declared open to all neutral ships in war and peacetime; the Great Powers British Prime Minister Benjamin Disraeli, were unhappy with this extension of Russian power, Serbia feared the establishment of Greater Bulgaria would harm its interests in former and remaining Ottoman territories. These reasons prompted the Great Powers to obtain a revision of the treaty at the Congress of Berlin, substitute the Treaty of Berlin. Romania, which had contributed to the Russian victory in the war, was disappointed by the treaty, the Romanian public perceived some of its stipulations as Russia breaking the Russo-Romanian pre-war treaties that guaranteed the integrity of Romanian territory.
Austria-Hungary was disappointed with the treaty as it failed to expand its influence in Bosnia-Herzegovina. The Albanians, dwelling in provinces controlled by the Ottoman Empire, objected to what they considered a significant loss of their territory to Serbia and Montenegro and realized they would have to organize nationally to attract the assistance of foreign powers seeking to neutralize Russia's influence in the region; the implications of the treaty led to the formation of the League of Prizren. In the "Salisbury Circular" of 1 April 1878, the British Foreign Secretary, made clear his and his government's objections to the Treaty of San Stefano and the favorable position in which it left Russia. According to British historian A. J. P. Taylor, writing in 1954, "If the treaty of San Stefano had been maintained, both the Ottoman Empire and Austria-Hungary might have survived to the present day; the British, except for in his wilder moments, had expected less and were therefore less disappointed.
Salisbury wrote at the end of 1878'We shall set up a rickety sort of Turkish rule again south of the Balkans. But it is a mere respite. There is no vitality left in them.'" Treaty of Berlin History of Bulgaria "Preliminary Treaty of Peace between Russia and Turkey: Signed at San Stefano, February 19/ March 3, 1878". The American Journal of International Law. II: 387–401. October 1908. Doi:10.2307/2212669. JSTOR 2212669; the Preliminary Treaty of Peace, signed at San Stefano -
World War I
World War I known as the First World War or the Great War, was a global war originating in Europe that lasted from 28 July 1914 to 11 November 1918. Contemporaneously described as "the war to end all wars", it led to the mobilisation of more than 70 million military personnel, including 60 million Europeans, making it one of the largest wars in history, it is one of the deadliest conflicts in history, with an estimated nine million combatants and seven million civilian deaths as a direct result of the war, while resulting genocides and the 1918 influenza pandemic caused another 50 to 100 million deaths worldwide. On 28 June 1914, Gavrilo Princip, a Bosnian Serb Yugoslav nationalist, assassinated the Austro-Hungarian heir Archduke Franz Ferdinand in Sarajevo, leading to the July Crisis. In response, on 23 July Austria-Hungary issued an ultimatum to Serbia. Serbia's reply failed to satisfy the Austrians, the two moved to a war footing. A network of interlocking alliances enlarged the crisis from a bilateral issue in the Balkans to one involving most of Europe.
By July 1914, the great powers of Europe were divided into two coalitions: the Triple Entente—consisting of France and Britain—and the Triple Alliance of Germany, Austria-Hungary and Italy. Russia felt it necessary to back Serbia and, after Austria-Hungary shelled the Serbian capital of Belgrade on the 28th, partial mobilisation was approved. General Russian mobilisation was announced on the evening of 30 July; when Russia failed to comply, Germany declared war on 1 August in support of Austria-Hungary, with Austria-Hungary following suit on 6th. German strategy for a war on two fronts against France and Russia was to concentrate the bulk of its army in the West to defeat France within four weeks shift forces to the East before Russia could mobilise. On 2 August, Germany demanded free passage through Belgium, an essential element in achieving a quick victory over France; when this was refused, German forces invaded Belgium on 3 August and declared war on France the same day. On 12 August and France declared war on Austria-Hungary.
In November 1914, the Ottoman Empire entered the war on the side of the Alliance, opening fronts in the Caucasus and the Sinai Peninsula. The war was fought in and drew upon each power's colonial empire as well, spreading the conflict to Africa and across the globe; the Entente and its allies would become known as the Allied Powers, while the grouping of Austria-Hungary and their allies would become known as the Central Powers. The German advance into France was halted at the Battle of the Marne and by the end of 1914, the Western Front settled into a battle of attrition, marked by a long series of trench lines that changed little until 1917. In 1915, Italy opened a front in the Alps. Bulgaria joined the Central Powers in 1915 and Greece joined the Allies in 1917, expanding the war in the Balkans; the United States remained neutral, although by doing nothing to prevent the Allies from procuring American supplies whilst the Allied blockade prevented the Germans from doing the same the U. S. became an important supplier of war material to the Allies.
After the sinking of American merchant ships by German submarines, the revelation that the Germans were trying to incite Mexico to make war on the United States, the U. S. declared war on Germany on 6 April 1917. Trained American forces would not begin arriving at the front in large numbers until mid-1918, but the American Expeditionary Force would reach some two million troops. Though Serbia was defeated in 1915, Romania joined the Allied Powers in 1916 only to be defeated in 1917, none of the great powers were knocked out of the war until 1918; the 1917 February Revolution in Russia replaced the Tsarist autocracy with the Provisional Government, but continuing discontent at the cost of the war led to the October Revolution, the creation of the Soviet Socialist Republic, the signing of the Treaty of Brest-Litovsk by the new government in March 1918, ending Russia's involvement in the war. This allowed the transfer of large numbers of German troops from the East to the Western Front, resulting in the German March 1918 Offensive.
This offensive was successful, but the Allies rallied and drove the Germans back in their Hundred Days Offensive. Bulgaria was the first Central Power to sign an armistice—the Armistice of Salonica on 29 September 1918. On 30 October, the Ottoman Empire capitulated. On 4 November, the Austro-Hungarian empire agreed to the Armistice of Villa Giusti after being decisively defeated by Italy in the Battle of Vittorio Veneto. With its allies defeated, revolution at home, the military no longer willing to fight, Kaiser Wilhelm abdicated on 9 November and Germany signed an armistice on 11 November 1918. World War I was a significant turning point in the political, cultural and social climate of the world; the war and its immediate aftermath sparked numerous uprisings. The Big Four (Britain, the United States, It
Second Industrial Revolution
The Second Industrial Revolution known as the Technological Revolution, was a phase of rapid industrialization between late 19th century and early 20th century. The First Industrial Revolution, which ended in the middle of 19th century, was punctuated by a slowdown in important inventions before the Second Industrial Revolution in 1870. Though a number of its characteristic events can be traced to earlier innovations in manufacturing, such as the establishment of a machine tool industry, the development of methods for manufacturing interchangeable parts and the invention of the Bessemer Process to produce steel, the Second Industrial Revolution is dated between 1870 and 1914. Advancements in manufacturing and production technology enabled the widespread adoption of technological systems such as telegraph and railroad networks and water supply, sewage systems, which had earlier been concentrated to a few select cities; the enormous expansion of rail and telegraph lines after 1870 allowed unprecedented movement of people and ideas, which culminated in a new wave of globalization.
In the same time period, new technological systems were introduced, most electrical power and telephones. The Second Industrial Revolution continued into the 20th century with early factory electrification and the production line, ended at the beginning of World War I; the Second Industrial Revolution was a period of rapid industrial development in Britain and the United States, but in France, the Low Countries and Japan. It followed on from the First Industrial Revolution that began in Britain in the late 18th century that spread throughout Western Europe and North America, it was characterized by the build out of railroads, large-scale iron and steel production, widespread use of machinery in manufacturing increased use of steam power, widespread use of the telegraph, use of petroleum and the beginning of electrification. It was the period during which modern organizational methods for operating large scale businesses over vast areas came into use; the concept was introduced by Patrick Geddes, Cities in Evolution, was being used by economists such as Erick Zimmerman, but David Landes' use of the term in a 1966 essay and in The Unbound Prometheus standardized scholarly definitions of the term, most intensely promoted by Alfred Chandler.
However, some continue to express reservations about its use. Landes stresses the importance of new technologies the internal combustion engine and petroleum, new materials and substances, including alloys and chemicals and communication technologies. Vaclav Smil called the period 1867–1914 "The Age of Synergy" during which most of the great innovations were developed since the inventions and innovations were engineering and science-based. A synergy between iron and steel and coal developed at the beginning of the Second Industrial Revolution. Railroads allowed cheap transportation of materials and products, which in turn led to cheap rails to build more roads. Railroads benefited from cheap coal for their steam locomotives; this synergy led to the laying of 75,000 miles of track in the U. S. in the 1880s, the largest amount anywhere in world history. The hot blast technique, in which the hot flue gas from a blast furnace is used to preheat combustion air blown into a blast furnace, was invented and patented by James Beaumont Neilson in 1828 at Wilsontown Ironworks in Scotland.
Hot blast was the single most important advance in fuel efficiency of the blast furnace as it reduced the fuel consumption for making pig iron, was one of the most important technologies developed during the Industrial Revolution. Falling costs for producing wrought iron coincided with the emergence of the railway in the 1830s; the early technique of hot blast used iron for the regenerative heating medium. Iron caused problems with contraction, which stressed the iron and caused failure. Edward Alfred Cowper developed the Cowper stove in 1857; this stove used firebrick as a storage medium, cracking problem. The Cowper stove was capable of producing high heat, which resulted in high throughput of blast furnaces; the Cowper stove is still used in today's blast furnaces. With the reduced cost of producing pig iron with coke using hot blast, demand grew and so did the size of blast furnaces; the Bessemer process, invented by Sir Henry Bessemer, allowed the mass-production of steel, increasing the scale and speed of production of this vital material, decreasing the labor requirements.
The key principle was the removal of excess carbon and other impurities from pig iron by oxidation with air blown through the molten iron. The oxidation raises the temperature of the iron mass and keeps it molten; the "acid" Bessemer process had a serious limitation in that it required scarce hematite ore, low in phosphorus. Sidney Gilchrist Thomas developed a more sophisticated process to eliminate the phosphorus from iron. Collaborating with his cousin, Percy Gilchrist a chemist at the Blaenavon Ironworks, Wales, he patented his process in 1878, his process was valuable on the continent of Europe, where the proportion of phosphoric iron was much greater than in England, both in Belgium and in Germany the name of the inventor became more known than in his own country. In America, although non-phosphoric iron predominated, an immense interest was taken in the invention; the next great advance in steel making was the Siemens-Martin proc
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
French Third Republic
The French Third Republic was the system of government adopted in France from 1870, when the Second French Empire collapsed during the Franco-Prussian War, until 10 July 1940 after France's defeat by Nazi Germany in World War II led to the formation of the Vichy government in France. The early days of the Third Republic were dominated by political disruptions caused by the Franco-Prussian War of 1870–71, which the Republic continued to wage after the fall of Emperor Napoleon III in 1870. Harsh reparations exacted by the Prussians after the war resulted in the loss of the French regions of Alsace and Lorraine, social upheaval, the establishment of the Paris Commune; the early governments of the Third Republic considered re-establishing the monarchy, but confusion as to the nature of that monarchy and who should be awarded the throne caused those talks to stall. Thus, the Third Republic, intended as a provisional government, instead became the permanent government of France; the French Constitutional Laws of 1875 defined the composition of the Third Republic.
It consisted of a Chamber of Deputies and a Senate to form the legislative branch of government and a president to serve as head of state. Issues over the re-establishment of the monarchy dominated the tenures of the first two presidents, Adolphe Thiers and Patrice de MacMahon, but the growing support for the republican form of government in the French population and a series of republican presidents during the 1880s quashed all plans for a monarchical restoration; the Third Republic established many French colonial possessions, including French Indochina, French Madagascar, French Polynesia, large territories in West Africa during the Scramble for Africa, all of them acquired during the last two decades of the 19th century. The early years of the 20th century were dominated by the Democratic Republican Alliance, conceived as a centre-left political alliance, but over time became the main centre-right party; the period from the start of World War I to the late 1930s featured polarized politics, between the Democratic Republican Alliance and the more Radicals.
The government fell during the early years of World War II as the Germans occupied France and was replaced by the rival governments of Charles de Gaulle's Free France and Philippe Pétain's Vichy France. Adolphe Thiers called republicanism in the 1870s "the form of government that divides France least". On the left stood Reformist France, heir to the French Revolution. On the right stood conservative France, rooted in the peasantry, the Roman Catholic Church and the army. In spite of France's divided electorate and persistent attempts to overthrow it, the Third Republic endured for seventy years, which as of 2018 makes it the longest lasting system of government in France since the collapse of the Ancien Régime in 1789; the Franco-Prussian War of 1870–1871 resulted in the defeat of France and the overthrow of Emperor Napoleon III and his Second French Empire. After Napoleon's capture by the Prussians at the Battle of Sedan, Parisian deputies led by Léon Gambetta established the Government of National Defence as a provisional government on 4 September 1870.
The deputies selected General Louis-Jules Trochu to serve as its president. This first government of the Third Republic ruled during the Siege of Paris; as Paris was cut off from the rest of unoccupied France, the Minister of War, Léon Gambetta, who succeeded in leaving Paris in a hot air balloon, established the headquarters of the provisional republican government in the city of Tours on the Loire river. After the French surrender in January 1871, the provisional Government of National Defence disbanded, national elections were called with the aim of creating a new French government. French territories occupied by Prussia at this time; the resulting conservative National Assembly elected Adolphe Thiers as head of a provisional government, nominally. Due to the revolutionary and left-wing political climate that prevailed in the Parisian population, the right-wing government chose the royal palace of Versailles as its headquarters; the new government negotiated a peace settlement with the newly proclaimed German Empire: the Treaty of Frankfurt signed on 10 May 1871.
To prompt the Prussians to leave France, the government passed a variety of financial laws, such as the controversial Law of Maturities, to pay reparations. In Paris, resentment against the government built and from late March – May 1871, Paris workers and National Guards revolted and established the Paris Commune, which maintained a radical left-wing regime for two months until its bloody suppression by the Thiers government in May 1871; the following repression of the communards would have disastrous consequences for the labor movement. The French legislative election of 1871, held in the aftermath of the collapse of the regime of Napoleon III, resulted in a monarchist majority in the French National Assembly, favourable to making a peace agreement with Prussia; the "Legitimists" in the National Assembly supported the candidacy of a descendant of King Charles X, the last monarch from the senior line of the Bourbon Dynasty, to assume the French throne: his grandson Henri, Comte de Chambord, alias "Henry V."
The Orléanists supported a descendant of King Louis Philippe I, the cousin of Charles X who replaced him as the French monarch i