First Sino-Japanese War
The First Sino-Japanese War was fought between China and Japan over influence in Korea. After more than six months of unbroken successes by Japanese land and naval forces and the loss of the port of Weihaiwei, the Qing government sued for peace in February 1895; the war demonstrated the failure of the Qing dynasty's attempts to modernize its military and fend off threats to its sovereignty when compared with Japan's successful Meiji Restoration. For the first time, regional dominance in East Asia shifted from China to Japan; the humiliating loss of Korea as a tributary state sparked an unprecedented public outcry. Within China, the defeat was a catalyst for a series of political upheavals led by Sun Yat-sen and Kang Youwei, culminating in the 1911 Xinhai Revolution; the war is known in China as the War of Jiawu, referring to the year as named under the traditional sexagenary system of years. In Japan, it is called the Japan–Qing War. In Korea, where much of the war took place, it is called the Qing–Japan War.
After two centuries, the Japanese policy of seclusion under the shōguns of the Edo period came to an end when the country was opened to trade by the Convention of Kanagawa in 1854. In the years following the Meiji Restoration of 1868 and the fall of the shogunate, the newly formed Meiji government embarked on reforms to centralize and modernize Japan; the Japanese had sent delegations and students around the world to learn and assimilate Western arts and sciences, with the intention of making Japan an equal to the Western powers. These reforms transformed Japan from a feudal society into a modern industrial state; the Qing Dynasty had started to undergo reform in both military and political doctrine, but was far from successful. In January 1864, Cheoljong of Joseon died without a male heir, through Korean succession protocols Gojong of Korea ascended the throne at the age of 12. However, as King Gojong was too young to rule, the new king's father, Yi Ha-ŭng, became the Heungseon Daewongun, or lord of the great court, ruled Korea in his son's name as regent.
The term Daewongun referred to any person, not the king but whose son took the throne. With his ascendancy to power the Daewongun initiated a set of reforms designed to strengthen the monarchy at the expense of the Yangban class, he pursued an isolationist policy and was determined to purge the kingdom of any foreign ideas that had infiltrated into the nation. In Korean history, the king's in-laws enjoyed great power the Daewongun acknowledged that any future daughters-in-law might threaten his authority. Therefore, he attempted to prevent any possible threat to his rule by selecting as a new queen for his son an orphaned girl from among the Yŏhŭng Min clan, which lacked powerful political connections. With Empress Myeongseong as his daughter-in-law and the royal consort, the Daewongun felt secure in his power. However, after she had become queen, Min recruited all her relatives and had them appointed to influential positions in the name of the king; the Queen allied herself with political enemies of the Daewongun, so that by late 1873 she had mobilized enough influence to oust him from power.
In October 1873, when the Confucian scholar Choe Ik-hyeon submitted a memorial to King Gojong urging him to rule in his own right, Queen Min seized the opportunity to force her father-in-law's retirement as regent. The departure of the Daewongun led to Korea's abandonment of its isolationist policy. On February 26, 1876, after confrontations between the Japanese and Koreans, the Ganghwa Treaty was signed, opening Korea to Japanese trade. In 1880, the King sent a mission to Japan, headed by Kim Hong-jip, an enthusiastic observer of the reforms taking place there. While in Japan, the Chinese diplomat Huang Zunxian presented him with a study called "Chaoxian Celue", it warned of the threat to Korea posed by the Russians and recommended that Korea maintain friendly relations with Japan, at the time too economically weak to be an immediate threat, to work with China, seek an alliance with the United States as a counterweight to Russia. After returning to Korea, Kim presented the document to King Gojong, so impressed with the document that he had copies made and distributed to his officials.
In 1880, following Chinese advice and breaking with tradition, King Gojong decided to establish diplomatic ties with the United States. After negotiations through Chinese mediation in Tianjin, the Treaty of Peace, Amity and Navigation was formally signed between the United States and Korea in Incheon on May 22, 1882. However, there were two significant issues raised by the treaty, the first concerned Korea's status as an independent nation. During the talks with the Americans, the Chinese insisted that the treaty contain an article declaring that Korea was a dependency of China and argued that the country had long been a tributary state of China, but the Americans opposed such an article, arguing that a treaty with Korea should be based on the Treaty of Ganghwa, which stipulated that Korea was an independent state. A compromise was reached, with Shufeldt and Li agreeing that the King of Korea would notify the U. S president in a letter that Korea had special status as a tributary state of China.
The treaty between the Korean government and the United States became the model for all treaties between it and other Western countries. Korea signed similar trade and commerce treaties with Great Britain and Germany in 1883, with Italy and
Northern and southern China
Northern China and southern China are two approximate mega-regions within China. The exact boundary between these two regions is not defined; the self-perception of Chinese nation regional stereotypes, has been dominated by these two concepts, given that regional differences in culture and language have fostered strong regional identities of the Chinese people. Used as the geographical dividing line between northern and southern China is the Qinling Huaihe Line; this line approximates the 800 millimetres isohyet in China. Culturally, the division is more ambiguous. In the eastern provinces like Jiangsu and Anhui, the Yangtze River may instead be perceived as the north–south boundary instead of the Huai River, but this is a recent development. There is an ambiguous area, the region around Nanyang, that lies in the gap where the Qin has ended and the Huai River has not yet begun; as such, the boundary between northern and southern China does not follow provincial boundaries. This may have been deliberate.
The Northeast and Inner Mongolia are conceived to belong to northern China according to the framework above. Xinjiang and Qinghai were not conceived of as being part of either the north or south. However, Xinjiang and Tibet are now regarded as being part of the north due to the spread of Northern Chinese culture and the use of Mandarin; the concepts of northern and southern China originate from differences in climate, geography and physical traits. Northern China is too cold and dry for rice cultivation and consists of flat plains and desert; these differences have led to differences in warfare during the pre-modern era, as cavalry could dominate the northern plains but encountered difficulties against river navies fielded in the south. There are major differences in language, cuisine and popular entertainment forms such as opera. Episodes of division into North and South include: Three Kingdoms Sixteen Kingdoms and Southern and Northern Dynasties Five Dynasties and Ten Kingdoms period Southern Song dynasty and Jin dynasty Warlord era of the Republic of ChinaThe Northern and Southern Dynasties showed such a high level of polarization between North and South that northerners and southerners referred to each other as barbarians.
For a large part of Chinese history, northern China was economically more advanced than southern China. The Jurchen and Mongol invasion caused a massive migration to southern China, the Emperor shifted the Song dynasty capital city from Kaifeng in northern China to Hangzhou, located south of the Yangtze river; the population of Shanghai increased from 12,000 households to over 250,000 inhabitants after Kaifeng was sacked by invading armies. This began a shift of political and cultural power from northern China to southern China; the east coast of southern China remained a leading economic and cultural center of China until the Republic of China. Today, southern China remains economically more prosperous than northern China. During the Qing dynasty, regional differences and identification in China fostered the growth of regional stereotypes; such stereotypes appeared in historic chronicles and gazetteers and were based on geographic circumstances and literary associations and Chinese cosmology.
These differences were reflected in Qing dynasty policies, such as the prohibition on local officials to serve their home areas, as well as conduct of personal and commercial relations. In 1730, the Kangxi Emperor made the observation in the Tingxun Geyan: The people of the North are strong. During the Republican period, Lu Xun, a major Chinese writer, wrote: According to my observation, Northerners are sincere and honest; these are their respective virtues. Yet sincerity and honesty lead to stupidity, whereas skillfulness and quick-mindedness lead to duplicity. In modern times and South is one of the ways that Chinese people identify themselves, the divide between northern and southern China has been complicated both by a unified Chinese nationalism and as well as by local loyalties to linguistically and culturally distinct regions within province, county and villag
French Indochina known as the Indochinese Union after 1887 and the Indochinese Federation after 1947, was a grouping of French colonial territories in Southeast Asia. A grouping of the three Vietnamese regions of Tonkin and Cochinchina with Cambodia was formed in 1887. Laos was added in 1893 and the leased Chinese territory of Guangzhouwan in 1898; the capital was moved from Saigon to Hanoi in 1902 and again to Da Lat in 1939. In 1945 it was moved back to Hanoi. After the Fall of France during World War II, the colony was administered by the Vichy government and was under Japanese occupation until March 1945, when the Japanese overthrew the colonial regime. After the Japanese surrender, the Viet Minh, a communist organization led by Hồ Chí Minh, declared Vietnamese independence, but France subsequently took back control of French Indochina. An all-out independence war, known as the First Indochina War, broke out in late 1946 between French and Viet Minh forces. In order to create a political alternative to the Viet Minh, the State of Vietnam, led by former Emperor Bảo Đại, was proclaimed in 1949.
On 9 November 1953 the Kingdom of Cambodia proclaimed its independence. Following the Geneva Accord of 1954, the French evacuated Vietnam and French Indochina came to an end. French–Vietnamese relations started during the early 17th century with the arrival of the Jesuit missionary Alexandre de Rhodes. Around this time, Vietnam had only just begun its "Push to the South"—"Nam Tiến", the occupation of the Mekong Delta, a territory being part of the Khmer Empire and to a lesser extent, the kingdom of Champa which they had defeated in 1471. European involvement in Vietnam was confined to trade during the 18th century, as the remarkably successful work of the Jesuit missionaries continued. In 1787, Pierre Pigneau de Behaine, a French Catholic priest, petitioned the French government and organised French military volunteers to aid Nguyễn Ánh in retaking lands his family lost to the Tây Sơn. Pigneau died in Vietnam but his troops fought on until 1802 in the French assistance to Nguyễn Ánh; the French colonial empire was involved in Vietnam in the 19th century.
For its part, the Nguyễn dynasty saw Catholic missionaries as a political threat. In 1858, the brief period of unification under the Nguyễn dynasty ended with a successful attack on Da Nang by French Admiral Charles Rigault de Genouilly under the orders of Napoleon III. Diplomat Charles de Montigny's mission having failed, Genouilly's mission was to stop attempts to expel Catholic missionaries, his orders were to stop the persecution of missionaries and assure the unimpeded propagation of the faith. In September 1858, fourteen French gunships, 3,000 men and 300 Filipino troops provided by the Spanish attacked the port of Tourane, causing significant damage and occupying the city. After a few months, Rigault had to leave the city due to supply illnesses. Sailing south, de Genouilly captured the poorly defended city of Saigon on 18 February 1859. On 13 April 1862, the Vietnamese government was forced to cede the three provinces of Biên Hòa, Gia Định and Định Tường to France. De Genouilly was criticised for his actions and was replaced by Admiral Page in November 1859, with instructions to obtain a treaty protecting the Catholic faith in Vietnam, but refrain from territorial gains.
French policy four years saw a reversal, with the French continuing to accumulate territory. In 1862, France obtained concessions from Emperor Tự Đức, ceding three treaty ports in Annam and Tonkin, all of Cochinchina, the latter being formally declared a French territory in 1864. In 1867 the provinces of Châu Đốc, Hà Tiên and Vĩnh Long were added to French-controlled territory. In 1863, the Cambodian king Norodom had requested the establishment of a French protectorate over his country. In 1867, Siam renounced suzerainty over Cambodia and recognised the 1863 French protectorate on Cambodia, in exchange for the control of Battambang and Siem Reap provinces which became part of Thailand.. France obtained control over northern Vietnam following its victory over China in the Sino-French War. French Indochina was formed on 17 October 1887 from Annam, Tonkin and the Kingdom of Cambodia; the federation lasted until 21 July 1954. In the four protectorates, the French formally left the local rulers in power, who were the Emperors of Vietnam, Kings of Cambodia, Kings of Luang Prabang, but in fact gathered all powers in their hands, the local rulers acting only as figureheads.
French troops landed in Vietnam in 1858 and by the mid-1880s they had established a firm grip over the northern region. From 1885 to 1895, Phan Đình Phùng led a rebellion against France. Nationalist sentiments intensified in Vietnam during and after World War I, but all the uprisings and tentative efforts failed to obtain sufficient concessio
Battle of Singapore
The Battle of Singapore known as the Fall of Singapore, was fought in the South-East Asian theatre of World War II when the Empire of Japan invaded the British stronghold of Singapore—nicknamed the "Gibraltar of the East". Singapore was the major British military base in South-East Asia and was the key to British imperial interwar defence planning for South-East Asia and the South-West Pacific; the fighting in Singapore lasted from 8 to 15 February 1942, after the two months during which Japanese forces had advanced down the Malayan Peninsula. The campaign, including the final battle, was a decisive Japanese victory, resulting in the Japanese capture of Singapore and the largest British surrender in history. About 80,000 British and Australian troops in Singapore became prisoners of war, joining 50,000 taken by the Japanese in the earlier Malayan Campaign; the British prime minister, Winston Churchill, called it the "worst disaster" in British military history. During 1940 and 1941, the Allies had imposed a trade embargo on Japan in response to its continued campaigns in China and its occupation of French Indochina.
The basic plan for taking Singapore was worked out in July 1940. Intelligence gained in late 1940 – early 1941 did not alter the basic plan, but confirmed it in the minds of Japanese decision makers. On 11 November 1940, the German raider Atlantis captured the British steamer Automedon in the Indian Ocean, carrying papers meant for Air Marshal Sir Robert Brooke-Popham, the British commander in the Far East, which included much information about the weakness of the Singapore base. In December 1940, the Germans handed over copies of the papers to the Japanese; the Japanese had broken the British Army's codes and in January 1941, the Second Department of the Imperial Army had interpreted and read a message from Singapore to London complaining in much detail about the weak state of "Fortress Singapore", a message, so frank in its admission of weakness that the Japanese at first suspected it was a British plant, believing that no officer would be so open in admitting weaknesses to his superiors, only believed it was genuine after cross-checking the message with the Automedon papers.
As Japan's oil reserves were depleted by the ongoing military operations in China as well as industrial consumption, in the latter half of 1941, the Japanese began preparing a military response to secure vital resources if diplomatic efforts to resolve the situation failed. As a part of this process, the Japanese planners determined a broad scheme of manoeuvre that incorporated simultaneous attacks on the territories of Britain, The Netherlands and the United States; this would see landings in Malaya and Hong Kong as part of a general move south to secure Singapore, connected to Malaya by the Johor–Singapore Causeway, an invasion of the oil-rich area of Borneo and Java in the Dutch East Indies. In addition, strikes would be made against the United States naval fleet at Pearl Harbor, as well as landings in the Philippines, attacks on Guam, Wake Island and the Gilbert Islands. Following these attacks, a period of consolidation was planned, after which the Japanese planners intended to build up the defences of the territory, captured by establishing a strong perimeter around it stretching from the India–Burma frontier through to Wake Island, traversing Malaya, the Dutch East Indies, New Guinea and New Britain, the Bismarck Archipelago, the Marshall and Gilbert Islands.
This perimeter would be used to block Allied attempts to regain the lost territory and defeat their will to fight. The Japanese 25th Army invaded from Indochina, moving into northern Malaya and Thailand by amphibious assault on 8 December 1941; this was simultaneous with the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor which precipitated the United States entry into the war. Thailand resisted, but soon had to yield; the Japanese proceeded overland across the Thai–Malayan border to attack Malaya. At this time, the Japanese began bombing strategic sites in Singapore; the Japanese 25th Army was resisted in northern Malaya by III Corps of the British Indian Army. Although the 25th Army was outnumbered by Allied forces in Malaya and Singapore, the Allies did not take the initiative with their forces, while Japanese commanders concentrated their forces; the Japanese were superior in close air support, armour, co-ordination and experience. While conventional British military thinking was that the Japanese forces were inferior, characterised the Malayan jungles as "impassable", the Japanese were able to use it to their advantage to outflank hastily established defensive lines.
Prior to the Battle of Singapore the most resistance was met at the Battle of Muar, which involved the Australian 8th Division and the Indian 45th Brigade, as the British troops left in the city of Singapore were garrison troops. At the start of the campaign, the Allied forces had only 164 first-line aircraft on hand in Malaya and Singapore, the only fighter type was the obsolete Brewster 339E Buffalo; these aircraft were operated by two Royal Australian Air Force, two Royal Air Force, one Royal New Zealand Air Force squadron. Major shortcomings included a slow rate of climb and the aircraft's fuel system which required the pilot to hand pump fuel if flying above 6,000 feet. In contrast, the Imperial Japanese Army Air Force was more numerous and better trained than the second-hand assortment of untrained pilots and inferior allied equipment remaining in Malaya and Singapore, their fighter aircraft were superior to the Allied fighters, which helped the Japanese to gain air supremacy. Although outnumbered and outclassed, the Buffalos were able to provide some resistance
An imperial guard or palace guard is a special group of troops of an empire closely associated directly with the Emperor or Empress. These troops embody a more elite status than other imperial forces, including the regular armed forces, maintain special rights and traditions; because the head of state wishes to be protected by the best soldiers available, their numbers and organisation may be expanded to carry out additional tasks. Napoleon's Imperial Guard is an example of this. In heterogeneous polities reliant on a greater degree of coercion to maintain central authority the political reliability and loyalty of the guard is the most important factor in their recruitment. In such cases the ranks of the guard may be filled with on the one hand Royal kinsman and clansman with a stake in the survival of the ruling family, on the other with members and culturally divorced from the general population and therefore reliant on Imperial patronage for their survival, for example the Varangian Guards, the Janissaries.
In the post-colonial period, the term has been used colloquially and derisively to describe the staff of a person a politician or corporate executive officer, that acts to prevent direct communication with the person. The 10,000-strong Immortals, an elite heavy infantry unit of the Achaemenid Empire from 550 BC–330 BC, functioning as both an Imperial Guard and a faction of the Achaemenid army The Praetorian Guard of the Imperial Roman Army in Ancient Rome, from 27 BC – 312 AD; the Equites singulares Augusti, Imperial Horse Guards of the Roman Emperors The 8000 Terracotta Warriors protecting the Emperor of China in the afterlife. The Immortals, the Iranian Imperial Guard, existing in Iran in the 20th century under the Pahlavi dynasty The Immortals, Nihang warriors or Sikh Akalis who have played the pivotal role in Sikh military history Jovians and Herculians, elite Guards legions during the Tetrarchy Scholae Palatinae, late Roman Imperial Guards in both Western and Eastern Empires. Established in ca.
312, in the West until the 490s, in Byzantine service until ca. 1080. The Northern Army of the Han Dynasty was the standing professional army branch of the Han Empire, garrisoned around the capital. Several units from this army would be given the honor of guarding the emperor in the capitol; the Feathered Forest of the Army of the Han dynasty The Rapid as Tigers of the Army of the Han dynasty Excubitors, Byzantine imperial guards established under the Byzantine emperor Leo I the Thracian Spatharioi, Byzantine palace guards in the 5th-8th centuries Tagmata, elite Byzantine guard units in the 8th-11th centuries Hetaireia, Byzantine mercenary guard composed of men from Eastern Europe and Central Asia in the 9th-12th centuries Varangian Guard, Byzantine palace guards and elite soldiers in the 10th-15th centuries Monaspa Guard, an elite unit of the Georgian army. Alemannic Guard of Emperor of the Serbs Stefan Uroš IV Dušan the Mighty. Janissaries and baltadji of the Ottoman Empire Imperial Guards, formed as honour bodyguards of the emperor and garrison of the capital, evolved to reflect the era's transition of reliance on professional soldiery over non-professional volunteers and conscripts.
Imperial Guards Brigade of Manchu Banner soldiers, entrusted with guarding the person of the Emperor of China and the Forbidden City during the Qing dynasty Imperial Guard of Manchukuo The Korean Imperial Guard of the Three Kingdoms of Korea and the Kingdom of Joseon designated by the Korean Empire. Royal Foreign Units Guards, King's Royal Guards such as the Scottish Guard, Swiss Guards such as the Hundred Swiss, the Mamelukes of the Imperial Guard, Guards of the French Royal Army, which served the European monarchies such as the Kingdom of France, part of the Maison militaire du roi de France. Imperial Guard of the First French Empire. Imperial Guard of the Second French Empire The Imperial Guard of the Russian Tsars; the Guards Corps of the Prussian, of the Imperial German Army Imperial Guard of the Archers, Brazilian Imperial bodyguards during the Empire of Brazil The Austrian Imperial Guard during the Austrian Empire and the Austrian-Hungarian Empire. The Bushi which appeared in 1185 and Samurai which appeared in 1615 governing Japan under the shōgun.
Imperial Guard in service protection of the Emperor of Japan. Part of the Japanese Army and since 1947, an integration of the National Police of Japan. Esho of the Oyo Empire Mehal Sefari of the Ethiopian Empire Kebur Zabangna of the Ethiopian Empire Kheshig of the Mongol Empire The term has been used in fiction: Imperial Guard, a group of alien warriors in the Marvel Comics universe that are charged with the duty of serving the Shi'ar Empire. Emperor's Royal Guard, Emperor Palpatine's personal protectors in the Star Wars universe; the Imperial Guard, the army of the Imperium in the Warhammer 40,000 tabletop miniature wargame. The Crimson Brigade, the Empire of Izmir's elite fighting unit in the 2000 film titled: "Dungeons & Dragons"; the Sardaukar of the Padishah Emperor and the Fremen Fedaykin of Paul Muad'dib, plus their successors the Fish Speakers both serve as imperial guards in Frank Herbert's Dune saga. The Imperial Guard of the planet Andor as seen on the TV series Star Trek: Enterprise List of empires List of largest empires List of extinct countries, etc.
Imperialism Colonialism Royal guard Republican guard National guard
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