Episode 31 - The juiciest slices are already gone:
The Great Powers cut the Balkans pie at the Congress of Berlin (Part 2)
Uploaded: 13 August 2019
In 1878, the Congress of Berlin assembled the Great Powers of Europe to call time on the out-of-control battle between Russia and the Ottoman Empire.
In our previous episode, we pointed out that every Power brought its own food to the table - be it a desire to cry foul on Russia, to balance the tension between two major Emperors or even to exploit events to snatch bonus territories from elsewhere.
In this episode, the drama continues as we present:
- How Britain - assisted by a cast of collaborators - somehow managed to steal the biggest slice of the pie before the negotiations even started
- That the delegates of “Small Men” at the Congress (including, and especially Bismarck) were almost all clueless about what “The Balkans” were and blocked all efforts by Balkans reps to educate them
- How the European nations humiliated the Ottomans needlessly
- What secret scheme the Congress’ “project manager” devised to keep everyone happy during the long debates
- The extremely cheeky message sent from Greece (hiding behind France) designed to provoke the Ottomans
- Why Bismarck was in such a bad mood for almost all of it (more so than usual) and what he was drinking to keep himself sane
- How the Great Powers let Austria elbow itself into the Balkan settlement by the back door and leave it wide open for the 1914 catastrophe
And much more if you click the play button above, but the best thing to do to get your mitts on more FOH gold is to sign up to our bi-weekly Dispatches legions here before Bismarck flips his lid: