History UsefulNotes / ImperialGermany

19th Jun '18 7:33:13 PM costanton11
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* HistoricalVillainUpgrade: At their worst, the Imperial Army could be repressive and violent. Their greatest crime might have been the deliberate burning of library of the Catholic University of Leuven in Belgium, which contained many irreplaceable one-of-a-kinds. Hostage taking and executions of civilians in occupied Belgium and France weren't unknown, either. This was particularly common as reprisal against Belgian sharpshooters, whose actions were blamed on civilian "[[LaResistance francs-tireurs]]" as they refused to believe that enemy snipers could be operating well inside the German occupation zone. That said, these atrocities, while very real, weren't anywhere near the scale of the Holocaust or other Nazi war crimes, or even the concurrent actions of Austria in Serbia or the Turks against Armenians. [[CriticalResearchFailure Some people aren't clear on this.]] [[VillainwithGoodPublicity On both sides of the issue.]] The Allies' propaganda during UsefulNotes/WorldWarI (notably the Rape of Belgium campaign, which blended fact and fiction profligately) and the total responsibility that was laid on them by the Versailles treaty didn't help, while Wilhelm's openly belligerent rhetoric and attitude made Germany easy to caricature.

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* HistoricalVillainUpgrade: At their worst, the Imperial Army could be repressive and violent. Their greatest crime might have been the deliberate burning of library of the Catholic University of Leuven in Belgium, which contained many irreplaceable one-of-a-kinds. Hostage taking and executions of civilians in occupied Belgium and France weren't unknown, either. This was particularly common as reprisal against Belgian sharpshooters, whose actions were blamed on civilian "[[LaResistance francs-tireurs]]" as they refused to believe that enemy snipers could be operating well inside the German occupation zone. That said, these atrocities, while very real, weren't anywhere near the scale of the Holocaust or other Nazi war crimes, or even the concurrent actions of Austria in Serbia or the Turks against Armenians. [[CriticalResearchFailure Some people aren't clear on this.]] this. [[VillainwithGoodPublicity On both sides of the issue.]] The Allies' propaganda during UsefulNotes/WorldWarI (notably the Rape of Belgium campaign, which blended fact and fiction profligately) and the total responsibility that was laid on them by the Versailles treaty didn't help, while Wilhelm's openly belligerent rhetoric and attitude made Germany easy to caricature.
15th Jun '18 8:50:20 PM costanton11
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The most famous statesman of the time was UsefulNotes/OttoVonBismarck. Bismarck engineered the unification of Germany through a lot of extremely ruthless and deceptive tricks, but he was so good at it that you can't help but cheer for the guy ([[EvilChancellor though that may be disputable]]). He spend his later years juggling a complex alliance system in an attempt to keep the peace in Europe. Historians are divided as to whether he could have kept it up, but Kaiser Wilhelm II booted him out, so we may never know. He also made the famous prediction that [[UsefulNotes/WorldWarI the next war in Europe would start over "some damned silly thing in the Balkans"]]. [[GoneHorriblyRight He was right.]]

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The most famous statesman of the time was UsefulNotes/OttoVonBismarck. Bismarck engineered the unification of Germany through a lot of extremely ruthless and deceptive tricks, but he was so good at it that you can't help but cheer for the guy ([[EvilChancellor though that may be disputable]]).guy. He spend his later years juggling a complex alliance system in an attempt to keep the peace in Europe. Historians are divided as to whether he could have kept it up, but Kaiser Wilhelm II booted him out, so we may never know. He also made the famous prediction that [[UsefulNotes/WorldWarI the next war in Europe would start over "some damned silly thing in the Balkans"]]. [[GoneHorriblyRight He was right.]]
15th Jun '18 8:14:07 PM Debsian1894
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Added DiffLines:

-->"Even now I rule supreme in the United States, where three million voters do my bidding at the Presidential elections."
31st May '18 1:57:50 PM JamesAustin
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** The Treaty of Versailles was seen in its time, mostly thanks to J. M. Keynes' book, as a "carthaginian peace" or a victor's justice forced unfairly on UsefulNotes/ImperialGermany. This was an explanation shared within Germany, [[StrangeBedfellows by Fascists, Nazis, Liberals, by Communists]] (such as UsefulNotes/VladimirLenin who cited Keynes' book in his pamphlets and notes) [[StrangeBedfellows and by liberals]] who agreed with Keynes based on his later fame as an economist. Decades later, the French economist Etienne Mantoux (who fought in LaResistance against the Nazis and died in battle) debunked Keynes' claims and analyses. Later historians such as A. J. P. Taylor, Fritz Fischer and Hans Mommsen argue that Imperial Germany was truly culpable for the first world war, and deserved to pay reparations. They also point out that the problems with the reparations was that it was ''too lenient'' [[https://www.newcriterion.com/articles.cfm/Guilt-trip--Versailles--avant-garde---kitsch-7942 and that Germany was in a position to pay]] and that the problem was that Versailles was a GoldenMeanFallacy that humiliated Germany politically yet left it in a militarily and economically secure position to act on its vengeance, while leaving the League of Nations no force and authority to enforce the reparations and conditions of the Treaty. It was also pointed out that the treaty was far milder than the reparations and conditions extorted by Germany against France during the UsefulNotes/FrancoPrussianWar and the Treaty of Brest-Litovsk with Russia. As the economist Thomas Piketty pointed out, that far from being burdened with reparations, [[http://thewire.in/5851/thomas-piketty-germany-has-never-repaid-its-debts-it-has-no-right-to-lecture-greece/ Germany's history is one of unpaid debts, generous concessions and cancellations]] and Imperial Germany received an entirely unearned victim status for the stigma of Versailles.

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** The Treaty of Versailles was seen in its time, mostly thanks to J. M. Keynes' book, as a "carthaginian peace" or a victor's justice forced unfairly on UsefulNotes/ImperialGermany. This was an explanation shared within Germany, [[StrangeBedfellows [[EnemyMine by Fascists, Nazis, Liberals, by Liberals and Communists]] (such as UsefulNotes/VladimirLenin who cited Keynes' book in his pamphlets and notes) [[StrangeBedfellows and by liberals]] who agreed with Keynes based on his later fame as an economist. Decades later, the French economist Etienne Mantoux (who fought in LaResistance against the Nazis and died in battle) debunked Keynes' claims and analyses. Later historians such as A. J. P. Taylor, Fritz Fischer and Hans Mommsen argue that Imperial Germany was truly culpable for the first world war, and deserved to pay reparations. They also point out that the problems with the reparations was that it was ''too lenient'' [[https://www.newcriterion.com/articles.cfm/Guilt-trip--Versailles--avant-garde---kitsch-7942 and that Germany was in a position to pay]] and that the problem was that Versailles was a GoldenMeanFallacy that humiliated Germany politically yet left it in a militarily and economically secure position to act on its vengeance, while leaving the League of Nations no force and authority to enforce the reparations and conditions of the Treaty. It was also pointed out that the treaty was far milder than the reparations and conditions extorted by Germany against France during the UsefulNotes/FrancoPrussianWar and the Treaty of Brest-Litovsk with Russia. As the economist Thomas Piketty pointed out, that far from being burdened with reparations, [[http://thewire.in/5851/thomas-piketty-germany-has-never-repaid-its-debts-it-has-no-right-to-lecture-greece/ Germany's history is one of unpaid debts, generous concessions and cancellations]] and Imperial Germany received an entirely unearned victim status for the stigma of Versailles.
19th May '18 8:15:00 AM costanton11
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The most famous statesman of the time was UsefulNotes/OttoVonBismarck. Bismarck engineered the unification of Germany through a lot of extremely ruthless and deceptive tricks, but he was so good at it that you [[MagnificentBastard can't help but cheer for the guy]] ([[EvilChancellor though that may be disputable]]). He spend his later years juggling a complex alliance system in an attempt to keep the peace in Europe. Historians are divided as to whether he could have kept it up, but Kaiser Wilhelm II booted him out, so we may never know. He also made the famous prediction that [[UsefulNotes/WorldWarI the next war in Europe would start over "some damned silly thing in the Balkans"]]. [[GoneHorriblyRight He was right.]]

to:

The most famous statesman of the time was UsefulNotes/OttoVonBismarck. Bismarck engineered the unification of Germany through a lot of extremely ruthless and deceptive tricks, but he was so good at it that you [[MagnificentBastard can't help but cheer for the guy]] guy ([[EvilChancellor though that may be disputable]]). He spend his later years juggling a complex alliance system in an attempt to keep the peace in Europe. Historians are divided as to whether he could have kept it up, but Kaiser Wilhelm II booted him out, so we may never know. He also made the famous prediction that [[UsefulNotes/WorldWarI the next war in Europe would start over "some damned silly thing in the Balkans"]]. [[GoneHorriblyRight He was right.]]



* MagnificentBastard: UsefulNotes/OttoVonBismarck.
1st May '18 7:56:59 PM Jhonny
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** Before even the German-Danish war of 1864 Wilhelm I was caught in a Constitutional Crisis when he could not get a parliamentary majority to finance his military reforms and tried to get the money some other way. Knowing no other way out, Wilhelm I even considered abdicating in favor of his son in 1862, but Bismarck was brought in as Prime Minister, resolved the conflict, convinced Wilhelm I to stay on, engineered three wars (1864 against Denmark, 1866 against Austria and 1870/1871 [[UsefulNotes/FracoPrussianWar against France]]) to unite Germany and the rest, as they say, is history. What if Wilhelm I, ''had'' resigned. What if he had brought in literally any other person not named Bismarck to resolve his issues?

to:

** Before even the German-Danish war of 1864 Wilhelm I was caught in a Constitutional Crisis when he could not get a parliamentary majority to finance his military reforms and tried to get the money some other way. Knowing no other way out, Wilhelm I even considered abdicating in favor of his son in 1862, but Bismarck was brought in as Prime Minister, resolved the conflict, convinced Wilhelm I to stay on, engineered three wars (1864 against Denmark, 1866 against Austria and 1870/1871 [[UsefulNotes/FracoPrussianWar [[UsefulNotes/FrancoPrussianWar against France]]) to unite Germany and the rest, as they say, is history. What if Wilhelm I, ''had'' resigned. What if he had brought in literally any other person not named Bismarck to resolve his issues?
1st May '18 7:56:34 PM Jhonny
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to:

** Before even the German-Danish war of 1864 Wilhelm I was caught in a Constitutional Crisis when he could not get a parliamentary majority to finance his military reforms and tried to get the money some other way. Knowing no other way out, Wilhelm I even considered abdicating in favor of his son in 1862, but Bismarck was brought in as Prime Minister, resolved the conflict, convinced Wilhelm I to stay on, engineered three wars (1864 against Denmark, 1866 against Austria and 1870/1871 [[UsefulNotes/FracoPrussianWar against France]]) to unite Germany and the rest, as they say, is history. What if Wilhelm I, ''had'' resigned. What if he had brought in literally any other person not named Bismarck to resolve his issues?
1st May '18 7:51:42 PM Jhonny
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to:

** There were several assassination attempts on Wilhelm I (who born in the 18th century lived to 1888 when the crown prince was already mortally ill). What if any of them had succeeded?
1st May '18 7:50:23 PM Jhonny
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*** The event which crippled Wilhelm's arm (his botched birth during which the doctors didn't get to examine the mother except in a fully clothed state until it was nearly too late) could've easily ended in his death - and possibly that of his mother as well. What if it had?
25th Apr '18 9:27:34 PM Debsian1894
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** During the Boxer Rebellion of 1900, Wilhelm reportedly told his troops to behave towards the Chinese [[RapePillageAndBurn "like the Huns of old."]] Fourteen years later, this provided Germany's enemies a handy epithet ''and'' propaganda tool.
** Wilhelm also made an habit of remarking the short stature of his ally, King Vittorio Emanuele III of Italy, and generally trying to piss him off. After ''fourteen years'' of these tricks UsefulNotes/WorldWarI started, and [[CavalryRefusal Vittorio Emanuele and his government were in perfect agreement to not invade France as they were supposed to]].

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** During the Boxer Rebellion of 1900, Wilhelm II reportedly told his troops to behave towards the Chinese [[RapePillageAndBurn "like the Huns of old."]] Fourteen years later, this provided Germany's enemies a handy epithet ''and'' propaganda tool.
** Wilhelm II also made an habit of remarking the short stature of his ally, King Vittorio Emanuele III of Italy, and generally trying to piss him off. After ''fourteen years'' of these tricks UsefulNotes/WorldWarI started, and [[CavalryRefusal Vittorio Emanuele and his government were in perfect agreement to not invade France as they were supposed to]].



* The British historical miniseries ''Series/FallOfEagles'' deals to a great extent with Imperial Germany's rise and fall. Barry Foster plays Kaiser Wilhelm.

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* The British historical miniseries ''Series/FallOfEagles'' deals to a great extent with Imperial Germany's rise and fall. Barry Foster plays Kaiser Wilhelm.Wilhelm II.
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