Installment #63: The new military spending bill presented to the German Reichstag on March 1, 1913, arrived in a climate of growing fear. In a speech urging the Reichstag to vote for the bill on April 7, 1913, German Chancellor Bethmann Hollweg (pictured) warned that Austria-Hungary – Germany’s only real ally – faced an existential threat from the rise of Slavic power in the Balkans in the First Balkan War, and predicted a “life and death struggle” between “Germanism” and “Slavism.”... READ ON
Before the First Balkan War between the Balkan League and the Ottoman Empire was even over, another conflict was brewing—this time between the members of the Balkan League. ... READ ON
Installment #56: On February 18, center-right politician Raymond Poincaré took office in an inauguration ceremony at the Hôtel de Ville. Poincaré’s presidency was an important factor in the lead-up to the First World War for a number of reasons. Although he didn’t seek war with Germany, the new French president was increasingly pessimistic about the prospects for lasting peace in Europe.... READ ON
Installment #55: After an alarming deterioration in 1911-1912, in February 1913 relations between Britain and Germany took a sudden and unexpected turn for the better. Friendlier relations between Europe’s two leading powers held out hope for lasting peace – but the Anglo-German détente proved to be superficial, temporarily masking tensions without resolving their underlying causes.... READ ON
Installment #54: As fighting between the Balkan League and the Ottoman Empire resumed in February 1913, Europe seemed to be teetering on the edge of a much wider war. Austria-Hungary, fearing the growth of Serbian power, was determined to prevent Serbia from gaining access to the sea through its newly-conquered territory in Albania, and mobilized eight army corps along its borders with Serbia and Russia to intimidate the small Slavic kingdom and its powerful patron.... READ ON
ABBA had to negotiate the rights to their name with a canned fish company.