auth.findreviews.com/overeater-affirmations-the-100-most-powerful-affirmations.php Representative of this arrangement was City of London merchant banking scion, Sir Charles Jocelyn Hambro, who sat as a director of the Bank of England from until his death in Rather than the traditional service to provide data from agents of espionage in foreign capitals, Britain's Secret Intelligence Service head was himself part of a secret, freemasonic-like network which wove together the immense powers of British banking, shipping, large industry, and government.
In the Free Trade era after , this covert marriage of private commercial power with government was the secret of British hegemony. British foreign policy was based on the cultivation, not of good neighborly relations with allies, but rather of calculated "interests," which dictated shifting alliances or national allies, abruptly, if required.
The Great Depression of However, as a direct consequence of this British free trade transformation, a deep economic depression began by the early 's in England following a financial panic. The Free Trade doctrine had been premised on the assumption that British influence could ensure that same dogma would become economic policy in all of the world's major trading nations. That homogeneity was never achieved. Following a severe London banking panic in , the City of London banking establishment, including the directors of the Bank of England, resolved on a novel device intended to prevent future outflows of gold from London banks.
The Panic of had resulted from a foreign run on the international gold reserves held by the Bank of England. The run collapsed bank credit in the City and across the country. In response to the crisis, the English authorities devised a policy which resulted in a simple, if dangerous, evolution of central bank practice. The Bank of England, a private holding controlled not by the Government at the time, but rather by the financial interests of the City, realized that if it merely raised its central bank discount or interest rate to a sufficiently high level, relative to rates in competing trading countries, which might be draining Britain's gold reserves at any time, then the drain would cease, and, if rates were driven sufficiently high, gold would eventually flow back into the banks of the City of London from Berlin, New York, Paris, or Moscow.
This interest rate policy was a powerful weapon in central banking, which gave the Bank of England a decisive advantage over rivals. No matter that the usuriously high interest rates created devastating depressions in British manufacture or agriculture. In order to ensure the supremacy of British international banking, those bankers were willing to sacrifice domestic industry and investment, much as happened in the United States after the assassination of President John F. Kennedy in the 's. But the consequences of this new Bank of England interest rate policy for British industry came home with a vengeance when the Great Depression hit Britain in , and lasted until Beginning with a financial crisis in the English banking world, as the pyramid of foreign lending for railway construction to the Americas, North and South, collapsed, the British Empire entered what was then called The Great Depression.
Unemployment became widespread. The lack of capital investment into British manufactures was already evident at the International Exhibition of Products from entirely new manufactures of machinery, even textiles from Germany and elsewhere, clearly overshadowed the stagnant technological levels of British manufacturing, the world leader only two decades earlier. British exports of iron, steel, coal, and other products declined in this period.
It was a turning point in British history which signalled that the onset of "free trade" some three decades earlier, with repeal of the Corn Laws, had doomed English industrial technology to decadance in order for financial interests to assume supremacy in the affairs of the Empire. The period of Britain's easy leadership among the world's industrial nations was clearly over by the 's. The free trade dogma of 19th Century British Empire, and its Malthusian rationalizations, were doomed to fail eventually. Its foundation was cannibalization of the economies of increasing parts of the globe in order to survive.
Only a quarter century after the repeal of the Corn Laws, the British Empire sank into the worst and longest economic depression of its history. After , British efforts to spread the virus of the "English Disease," Adam Smith's "cosmopolitan economic model" of absolute free trade, became markedly less successful.
This set the stage for a new debate within the British elite over how to maintain Empire and power in a rapidly changing world. The geopolitics of petroleum was introduced into this debate in Now it was a debate on how to maintain British naval supremacy. Footnotes: 1. Commenting on British free trade policy in , American economist Henry C. Carey, architect of the national economic strategy of Abraham Lincoln, noted, "We have thus here a system that is unsound and unnatural, and second, a theory invented for the purpose of accounting for the poverty and wretchedness which are its necessary results.
The miseries of Ireland are charged to over-population, although millions of acres of the richest soils of the kingdom are waiting drainage to take their place among the most productive in the world, and although the people of Ireland are compelled to waste more labour than would pay, many times over, for all the cloth and iron they consume Over-population is the ready excuse for all the evils of a vicious system, and so will it continue to be until that system shall see its end.
To maintain it, the price of labour in England must be kept steadily at a point so low as to enable her to underwrite the Hindoo, the German, and the American, with all the disadvantage of freight and duties. Her establishments were gigantic, and always ready to sink those who might undertake competition; while the unceasing changes in her monetary arrangements, [Bank of England manipulations of gold supply— w.
American credit had shifted more and more into the control of the banks of the City of London after the 's, and away from List's notion of national economy. In Britain, under the free trade effects on labor, he notes, "Women have been substituted for men, and children of the most immature years for women, and the hours of labour have been so far extended as to render Parliamentary interference absolutely necessary.
Frauds of every kind have become almost universal. Flour is substituted for cotton The quality of iron and of all other commodities is uniformly reduced to the point required for preventing other nations from producing such commodities for themselves. With this vast increase in the importation of food from abroad has come the ruin of the people of Ireland.
Deprived of manufacture and commerce [by England's economic policy], her people were driven to live by agriculture alone, and she was enabled to drag on a miserable existence, so long as her neighbor [England] was content to make some compensation for the loss of labour by paying her for her products higher prices than those at which they might have been elsewhere purchased. From being a great exporter of food, she has now become a large importer.
The great market for Indian corn is Ireland— a country in which the production of food is almost the sole occupation of the people The whole system has for its object an increase in the number of persons that intervene between the producer and the consumer Skinner, pp. Smith, E. List, Friedrich. Kelley, New York, Smith, op. Emphasis in original—w. The role of petroleum already had become central in this conflict, to a degree that few outside a tiny elite of London and New York bankers and financiers realized until years later.
Toward the final decade of the 19th century, British banking and political elites had begun to express the first signs of alarm over two specific aspects of the impressive industrial development in Germany. The first was emergence of an independent, modern German merchant and military naval fleet. Since and the Congress of Vienna, the English Navy had been the unchallenged lord of the seas.
The second strategic alarm was sounded over an ambitious German project to construct a railway linking Berlin with, ultimately, Baghdad, then part of the Ottoman Empire. In both areas, the naval challenge and construction of a rail infrastructure linking Berlin to the Persian Gulf, oil figured as a decisive, if still hidden, motive force for both the British and the German side. We will see why these two developments were regarded as virtual casus belli by the Anglo-Saxon establishment at the turn of the century.
With the United States concentrated largely on its internal expansion after its Civil War, the industrial emergence of Germany was increasingly seen as the largest "threat" to Britain's global hegemony during the last decade of the century. By the 's, decades of piecemeal German adoption of the economic reforms of Friedrich List, creation of a national modern rail transport infrastructure and tariff protection for emerging domestic industries, began to yield notable results, more so in the context of the political unity of the German Reich after Until approximately the 's, imitation of the apparently successful British economic model was the dominant policy followed in Germany, and the free trade economics of such British economists as Adam Smith or David Ricardo were regarded as holy gospel in German universities.
But increasingly, after England went into prolonged depression in the 's which hit Germany and Austria as well, Germany began to realize the serious flaws in continuing faithfully to follow the "British model. As one indication of this shift away from the English model, from to the eve of the First World War in , German total domestic output increased five-fold.
The population began to experience a steady increase in its living standard, as real industrial wages doubled between and But the heart of the German industrial revolution was the explosion of technological progress. Germany established a national system of technological schools Technische Hochschulen and colleges, modelled on the French Ecole Polytechnique, for the education of scientific and engineering cadre for industry, and a system of "Handelshochschulen," organized with support from the various chambers of commerce and industry, for education of business cadre.
Moreover, German universities placed emphasis on natural sciences in their curricula. German engineering and science began to blossom. This was paralleled by a nationwide system of "Fachschulen" for training of skilled tradesmen. The net result of it all was a dramatic increase in the technological competence of the German working population after the 's. But that was to change drastically over the next three to four decades. In the decades before , in terms of fueling world industry and transportation, coal was king. In , Germany produced 88 million tons of coal, while Britain produced more than double as much, million tons.
But by , German output of coal climbed impressively to million tons, while Britain had only a slight lead at million tons. Steel was at the center of Germany's growth, with the rapidly emerging electrical power and chemicals industries close behind. As late as , Britain still led Germany in production of pig iron, with 7. At the same time, the cost of making Germany's steel dropped to one-tenth the cost of the 's. By , Germany was smelting almost two times the amount of pig iron as British foundries. Following the development of centralized electric power generation and long-distance transmission under the impulse of Oskar von Miller and others, the German electrical industry grew from an infant industry employing 26, in to dominate fully half of all international trade in electrical goods by German chemical industry, under the impulse of great researchers such as Justus von Liebig and others, grew from one vastly inferior to both French and British industry, to become the world's leader in analine dye production, pharmaceuticals and chemical fertilizers.
Introduction of scientific agriculture chemistry by von Liebig and others led also to astonishing rates of productivity increase during this period for German agriculture. The mechanization of farming began to show progress, going from 20, harvesting machines in to some , by Despite often inferior and sandy soils, German chemical fertilizer development led to improving harvest yields. By contrast, Russia, at the outbreak of the war, with three million acres more under grain cultivation, produced 19 million tons less grain than Germany. Paralleling the expansion of its industry and agriculture, Germany went from a net emigration country in the early 's, to a country with strong population growth by the end of the century.
Large industry grew in a symbiosis after the 's together with large banks such as Deutsche Bank, under what became known as the "Grossbanken" model, or simply "German model" of interlocking ownership between major banks and key industrial companies. The much-proclaimed industrial recovery from the devastation of war and world depression in the late 's represented, to a very significant degree, the recovery of the foundations laid during the 's up to A Berlin Bank Panic The development of an independent national economic policy in Germany took its second impetus from the consequences, ironically, of a banking panic.
In , as a result of the near-failure of 24 A CENTURY OF WAR the prestigous London merchant bank, Baring Brothers, arising from their huge losses in Argentine bond speculation and investment, and the ties of German banking to this Argentine speculation, a Berlin bank panic ensued, as the dominoes of an international financial pyramid began to topple.
Berlin, and German investors generally, were caught up in international railroad speculation mania in the 's. With the crash of the elite Baring Bros. Responding to the crisis, the Chancellor named a Commission of Inquiry of 28 eminent persons, under the chairmanship of Reichsbank President Dr. Richard Koch, to look into the causes and to propose legislative measures to prevent further such panics from occuring. The Koch Commission was composed of a broad and representative cross-section of German economic society including representatives from industry, agriculture, universities, political parties, as well as banking and finance.
The result of the commission's work, most of it voted into law by the Reichstag in the Exchange Act in June , and the Depotgesetz of that July, was the most severe legislation restricting financial speculation of any industrial country of the time. Futures positions in grain were prohibited. Stock market speculation possibilities were severely constrained, one result of which has been the relative absence of stock market speculation as a major factor affecting German economic life since then.
The German Exchange Act of definitively established a different form of organization of finance and banking in Germany, from that of England or America—Anglo-Saxon banking. Significantly, to the present day, these fundamental differences between Anglo-Saxon banking and finance and a "German model" as largely practiced in Germany, Holland, Switzerland and Japan, are still somewhat visible.
By , the trends of divergence between the two countries were evident to all. But a growing friction between Germany and England in the years before was centered on two special aspects of Germany's impressive overall economic development. First and foremost was the dramatic emergence of Germany as a pre-eminent modern shipping nation, ultimately threatening the decadeslong English domination of the seas.
As long as Germany did not control her own modern merchant ship fleet, and did not have a navy to defend it, Germany could never determine her own economic affairs. England was still the sovereign on the world's oceans, and intended to remain so. This was the heart of British geopolitical strategy. Under such conditions, an increasing majority in Germany argued that the nation's economic life would be ever subject to the manipulations of a foreign shipping power for the essential terms of its vital international trade.
In , the total merchant fleet of the German Reich barely totalled , tons. The German merchant fleet at the time was the fifth largest in the world, behind the British, American, French, and Norwegian. By , the German fleet had risen to Number Two, just behind England, and gaining rapidly. German export goods in were subject to both the rates and ships of other nations, above all England. By , this had changed dramatically. Already by , 9,, tons on 52, different ships left German ports sailing under German flag.
Control of the terms of this trade was clearly vital for the economic security of Germany. But few in London finance and shipping circles welcomed that prospect. The parallel developments in German steel and engineering were directly applied to construction of a modern merchant shipping fleet. Replacement of wind power with steam propulsion and of wooden hulls, first with iron reinforcing and later with steel hulls, allowed Germany's merchant fleet to become larger and more efficient.
In , the German fleet could count three steamers over 7, BWT. During this time, German sea transport developed with extraordinary rapidity and efficiency. Organization, economies of scale, and emphasis on construction of the most efficient and modern ships, was the secret of the spectacular growth in this period. A French observer of the day, commenting on the extraordinary success of German marine transport in this period noted, "It is this concentration which makes possible the rapid amortization of capital and, in consequence, the 'scrapping' of ships which have become old, the perpetual rejuvenation of the floating machinery.
You do not find in the German mercantile marine old vessels of thirty or forty years. What the German industries, properly speaking—metallurgy, electro-technique, etc. In , little more than one year after the Reichstag passed the restrictive financial speculation controls, Grand-Admiral von Tirpitz announced the first German naval construction program, which the Reichstag approved in , followed in by a second law doubling the number of naval ships to be built.
By , England had launched a superior new, all-big gun battleship class with the Dreadnought, which was swifter and carried more firepower than any existing battleship. In response in , Germany passed a little-publicized law mandating replacement of the German naval fleet every 20 years.
By , to the astonishment of the British, Germany launched its Nassau series with four ships superior to the Dreadnaught ships were soon superceded by both British and German shipbuilders with an even more advanced Super-Dreadnaught series. Britain never imagined that Germany could develop such a modern fleet in its own naval yards, and in such a short time. Reviewing the background of the Great War in an Oxford University lecture in , Sir Llewellyn Woodward tersely stated, "Germany, like every other power, was free to build for herself as large a fleet as she might wish.
The question was one of expediency and of realist calculation. A German battle fleet could not be other than a challenge to Great Britain, the dominant sea power. It was becoming clear to some in England by about that dramatic remedies would be required to deal with the awesome German economic emergence.
For the first time, as we shall now see, petroleum also emerged as a significant factor in the geopolitical calculus of war. Born, Karl Erich. Borchardt, Knut. Loeb, Ernst. Hauser, Henri. New York. A British Admiral sees beyond lamp oil I N , THE BLACK heavy sludge we know today as petroleum had little commercial interest other than for fuel to light new mineral oil lamps, a technique developed in Berlin in by a German lamp manufacturer named Stohwasser. The fuel was then known as "rock oil" because it seeped through rocks in certain oil areas such as Titusville, Pennsylvania, Baku in Russia, or in Galicia, now part of Poland.
In , John D. Rockefeller created the Standard Oil Co. The development of the internal combustion engine had not yet revolutionized world industry. But at least one man understood the military-strategic implications of petroleum for future control of the world seas. Beginning with a public address in September , Britain's Admiral Lord Fisher, then Captain Fisher, argued to anyone in the British establishment who would listen that Britain must convert its naval fleet from bulky coal-fired propulsion to the new oil fuel.
Since Russian steamers on the Caspian Sea had burned a heavy fuel oil the Russians called "mazut. He insisted that oil-power would allow Britain to maintain decisive strategic advantage in future control of the seas. Fisher had done his homework on the qualitative superiority of petroleum over coal as a fuel, and knew his reasoning was sound. Where some 4 to 9 hours were required for a coal-fired ship to reach full power, an oil motor required only 30 minutes and could reach peak power within 5 minutes. To provide oil fuel for a battle ship required the work of 12 men for 12 hours.
The same equivalent of energy for a coal ship required the work of men and 5 days. The radius of action of an oil-powered fleet was up to four times as great as that of the comparable coal ship. Meanwhile, by a German. Although automobiles were regarded as playthings of the ultra-rich until the turn of the century, the economic potentials of the petroleum era were beginning to be more broadly realized by many beyond Admiral Fisher and his circle.
D'Arcy captures the secret of the burning rocks By , British Secret Services and the British government had finally realized the strategic importance of the new fuel. Britain's problem was that it had no known oil of its own. It had to rely on America, Russia or Mexico to supply it, an unacceptable condition in time of peace, impossible in the event of a major war.
A year before, in , Captain Fisher had been promoted to the rank of Britain's First Sea Lord, the supreme commander of British naval affairs. Fisher promptly established a committee to "consider and make recommendations as to how the British navy shall secure its oil supplies. Persia was not part of the formal British Empire. In , Lord Curzon, later Viceroy of India, writing on Persia, stated, "I should regard the concession of a port upon the Persian Gulf to Russia, by any power, as a deliberate insult to Great Britain and as a wanton rupture of the status quo, and as an international provocation to war In early , Her Majesty's Secret Service sent Reilly born Sigmund Georgjevich Rosenblum in Odessa, Russia with the mission to extract rights to exploit the mineral resources of Persia from an eccentric Australian amateur geologist and engineer named William Knox d'Arcy.
D'Arcy, a devout Christian who had studied history deeply, became convinced that accounts of "pillars of fire" at the holy sites of the ancient Persian God of Fire, Ormuzd, derived from the practice of the priests of Zoroaster lighting naptha—oil—seeping from the rocks in those select sites. He spent years wandering the areas where these ancient Persian temples existed, searching for oil.
He made numerous visits to London to secure financial support for his quest, with diminishing support from British bankers. Sometime in the 's, the new Persian monarch, Reza Khan Pahlevi, a man committed to modernizing what today is Iran, called on D'Arcy as an engineer who knew Iran thoroughly, asking him to aid Persia in development of railways and the beginnings of industry. In , in gratitude for his services to Persia, the Shah awarded to D'Arcy a "firman," or royal concession, giving D'Arcy "full powers and unlimited liberty, for a period of sixty years, to probe, pierce and drill at their will the depths of Persian soil; in consequence of which all the sub-soil products sought by him without exception will remain his inalienable property.
Thus the eccentric Australian secured one of the most valuable legal documents of the day, granting him and "all his heirs and assigns and friends" exclusive rights to tap the oil potential of Persia until Reilly, disguised as a priest and skillfully playing on d'Arcy's strong religious inclinations, persuaded d'Arcy instead to sign over his exclusive rights to Persian oil resources in an agreement with a British company which he claimed to be a good "Christian" enterprise, the Anglo-Persian Oil Company. The Scottish financier Lord Strathcona was brought in by the British government as a key shareholder of Anglo-Persian, while the government's actual role in Anglo-Persian was kept secret.
Reilly had thus secured Britain's first major petroleum source. By rail from Berlin to Baghdad In , a group of German industrialists and bankers, led by Deutsche Bank, secured a concession from the Ottoman government to build a railway through Anatolia from the capital, Constantinople. This accord was expanded ten years later, in , when the Ottoman government gave the German group approval for the next stage of what became known as the Berlin-Baghdad Railway project.
German-Turkish relations had gained high importance over those ten years. Germany had decided to build a strong economic alliance with Turkey beginning in the 's, as a way to develop potentially vast new markets to the East for export of German industrial goods. The Berlin-Baghdad Railway project was to be the centerpiece of a brilliant and quite workable economic strategy.
Potential supplies of oil lurked in the background and Britain stood opposed. The seeds of animosities tragically acted out in the Middle East in the 's trace directly back to this period. For more than two decades, the question of construction of a modern railway linking Continental Europe with Baghdad was at the center of German-English relations as a point of friction.
The company was named the Anatolian Railway Company, and included Austrian and Italian shareholders as well as a small English shareholding. Work on the railway proceeded so well, that the section was completed ahead of schedule and construction was further extended south to Konia.
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By a rail line was open which could go from Berlin to Konia deep in the Turkish interior of the Anatolian highlands, a stretch of some 1, kilometers of new rail constructed in less than 8 years in an economically desolate area. It was a true engineering and construction accomplishment.
The ancient rich valley of the Tigris and Euphrates rivers was coming into sight of modern transportation infrastructure. Hitherto, the only rail infrastructure built in the Middle east had been British or French, all of it extremely short stretches in Syria or elsewhere to link key port cities, but never to open up large expanses of interior to modern industrialization. For the first time, the railway gave Constantinople and the Ottoman Empire vital modern economic linkage with its entire asiatic interior.
The rail link, once extended to Baghdad and a short distance further to Kuwait, would provide the cheapest and fastest link between Europe and the entire Indian subcontinent, a world rail link of the first order. From the English side, this was exactly the point. Laffan, at that time a senior British military adviser attached to the Serbian Army. The port of Alexandretta and the control of the Dardanelles would soon give Germany enormous naval power in the Mediterranean. One little strip of territory alone blocked the way and prevented the two ends of the chain from being linked together.
That little strip was Serbia. Serbia stood small but defiant between Germany and the great ports of Constantinople and Salonika, holding the Gate of the East.. Serbia was really the first line of defense of our eastern possessions. If she were crushed or enticed into the 'Berlin-Baghdad' system, then our vast but slightly defended empire would soon have felt the shock of Germany's eastward thrust. But it would be a mistake to view the construction of the Berlin-Baghdad railway project as a "German" coup against England. Germany repeatedly sought English cooperation in the project.
Since the 's, when agreement was reached with the Turkish government to complete a final 2, kilometer stretch of rail, which would complete the line down to what is today Kuwait, Deutsche Bank and the Berlin government made countless attempts to secure English participation and co-financing of the enormous project. In November , following his visit to Constantinople, German Kaiser Wilhelm II went to meet with Queen Victoria in Windsor Castle to personally intercede in favor of soliciting a significant British participation in the Baghdad project.
Germany well knew that Britain asserted interests in the Persian Gulf and Suez in defense of her India Passage, as it was known. Without positive English backing, it was clear that the project would face great difficulties, not least political and financial. The size of the final leg of the railway was beyond the resources of German banks, even one as large as Deutsche Bank, to finance alone.
This game lasted literally until the outbreak of war in August, But the trump card which Her Royal Britannic Majesty played in the final phase of the negotiations around the Baghdad railway, was her tie with the corrupt Sheikh of Kuwait. In , English warships off the Kuwait coast dictated to the Turkish Government that henceforth they must consider the Gulf port located just below the Shaat al Arab, controlled by the Anaza tribe of Sheikh Mubarak al-Sabah, to be a "British Protectorate.
Kuwait in British hands blocked successful completion of the Berlin-Baghdad rail from important eventual access to the Persian Gulf waters and beyond. In , Sheihk Mubarak Al-Sabah, a ruthless sort who reportedly seized power in the region in by murdering his two halfbrothers as they slept in his palace, was convinced to sign over, in the form of a "lease in perpetuity," the land of Bander Shwaikh to "the precious Imperial English Government. Reportedly, there were generous portions of English gold and rifles to make the signing more palatable to the Sheikh. By October , Lt.
By , it was known that the region of the Ottoman Empire known as Mesopotamia—today Iraq and Kuwait—contained resources of petroleum. How much and how accessible was still a matter for speculation. This discovery shaped the gigantic battle for global economic and military control which continues to the end of the 20th century. In , Deutsche Bank, in the course of its financing of the Baghdad rail connection, negotiated a concession from the Ottoman Emperor giving the Baghdad Rail Co.
The line had reached as far as Mosul in what today is Iraq. By , German industry and government realized that oil was the fuel of its economic future, not only for land transport but for naval vessels. In , Germany had no independent, secure supply of oil. But geologists had discovered oil in that part of Mesopotamia today called Iraq, between Mosul and Baghdad.
The projected line of the last part of the Berlin-Baghdad rail link would go right through the area believed to hold large oil reserves. Efforts to pass legislation in the Berlin Reichstag in to establish a German state-owned company to develop and run the new found oil resources, independent of the American Rockefeller combine, were stalled and delayed, until the outbreak of World War in August pushed it off the agenda. The Deutsche Bank plan was to have the Baghdad rail link transport Mesopotamian oil over land, free from possible naval blockade by the British and thereby make Germany independent in its petroleum requirements.
The new Dreadnaughts But it was not until , that Admiral Fisher's plans for Britain's oil-fired navy began to be implemented. Germany had just launched the first of its advanced improvement of the English Dreadnought series.
The German Von der Tann carried 80, horsepower engines, which, while still coal-fired, were capable of a then astounding 28 knots speed. Only two British ships could match that speed. Britain's coal-fired fleet was at its technological limit and British naval supremacy was decisively threatened by the rapidly expanding German economic marvel.
Churchill immediately began a campaign to implement Fisher's demand for an oil-powered navy. Using Fisher's arguments, Churchill pointed out that, with ships of equal size, oil gives far greater speed, and, per unit of weight, gives a decisive advantage in domain of action without refueling.
Britain's Anglo-Persian Exploration Co. As we have seen, Germany's relentless extension of the Berlin-Baghdad railway line played a significant role in this determination. The retired Lord Fisher was named to chair it. By early , acting secretly, and again at Churchill's urging, the British Government bought up a majority share ownership of Anglo-Persian Oil today British Petroleum. From this point, oil was at the core of British strategic interest. In short, if England's stagnating industry could not compete with Germany's emerging Daimler motors, it would control the raw material on which the Daimler motors must run.
Just what this policy of British petroleum control implied for the course of world history will become more clear. Sir Edward Grey's fateful Paris trip Why would England risk a world war in order to stop the development of Germany's industrial economy in ? Since that point, the English-German differences were unbridgeable, and susceptible to no agreement in any one single question.
Russia's Ambassador to France, Iswolski, joined, and the three powers firmed up a secret military alliance against the German-Austro-Hungarian powers. Grey deliberately did not warn Germany beforehand of its secret alliance policy, whereby England would enter a war which engaged any one of the carefully-constructed web of alliance partners England had built up against Germany. A seminal event, which crystalized this alliance shift, was, oddly enough, an eyeball-to-eyeball military confrontation over Egypt, where historically both England and France had major interests through the Suez Canal Company.
A tense military showdown ensued, with each ordering the other side to withdraw, until finally, after consultation with Paris, Marchand withdrew. The Fashoda Crisis, as it became known, ended in a de facto Anglo-French balance-ofpower alliance against Germany, in which France foolishly ceded major possibilities to industrialize Africa.
Britain had steadily moved to what became a de facto military occupation of Egypt and the Suez Canal, despite French claims to the area going back to Napoleon. Since , British troops had "temporarily" occupied Egypt, and British civil servants ran the government in order to "protect" French and British interests in the Suez Canal Company. England was stealing Egypt out from under France.
Delcasse acted against the better interests of France and against the explicit policy design of French Foreign Minister Gabriel Hanotaux. Hanotaux, who was absent from government for a critical six months when the Fashoda folly was decided, had a conception of development and industrialization of France's African colonies.
A moderate Republican who was known as an Anglophobe, Hanotaux had a conception of an economically unified French Africa centered around development of Lake Chad, with a railroad linking the interior from Dakar in French Senegal to French Djibouti on the Red Sea. The idea was referred to in France as the Trans-Sahara Railway project. It would have transformed the entirety of Saharan Africa from West to East.
It would also have blocked major British strategic objectives to control the entire region from Africa, across Egypt and into India. In early , the German Foreign Secretary asked the French Ambassador in Berlin whether France would consider joint action in Africa for "limiting the insatiable appetite of England Its direct aim was to rupture the delicate efforts of Hanotaux to stabilize relations with Germany. A French army Captain named Dreyfus was prosecuted on charges of spying for the Germans.
Hanotaux intervened into the initial process in , correctly warning that the Dreyfus affair would lead to "a diplomatic rupture with Germany, even war. By , Hanotaux was out of office, and succeeded by the malleable Anglophile, Theophile Delcasse. After Fachoda in , Britain skillfully enticed France, under Foreign Minister Delcasse, to give up fundamental colonial and economic interests in Egypt and concentrate on a French policy against Germany, with Britain secretly agreeing to back French claims on Alsace-Lorraine, as well as supporting French ambitions in other areas not vital to British designs.
Describing these British diplomatic machinations around Fachoda some years later in , Hanotaux remarked, "It is an historical, proven fact that any colonial expansion of France has been seen with fear and concern in England. For a long time, England has thought that, in the domination of the Seas, she has no other rival to consider than that power endowed by nature with a triple coastline of the Channel, the Atlantic and the Mediterranean Sea.
And when, after , France, induced by the circumstances and stimulated by the genius of Jules Ferry, began to reconstitute her dismembered colonial domain, she came up against the same resistance. Germany's economic threat was the glue binding the two unlikely allies. Beginning , Russia had embarked on an ambitious industrialization program with the passage of a stringent protective tariff and railroad infrastructure program.
Witte had enjoyed close relations with France's Hanotaux and a positive basis for Franco-Russian relations developed around the construction of the railway system of Russia. The most ambitious project initiated in Russia at that time had been construction of a railroad linking Russia in the West to Vladivostock in the far East—the Trans-Siberian Railway project, a 5, mile-long undertaking, which would transform the entire economy of Russia. This was the most ambitious rail project in the world. Witte himself was a profound student of the German economic model of Friederich List, having translated List's "National System of Political Economy"into Russian, which Witte termed, "the solution for Russia.
Even if it is passed through an absolutely wild people along the way, it would raise them in a short time to the level requisite for its operation," he said in A central part of Witte's plan was to develop peaceful and productive relations with China, independent of British control of China's ports and sea lanes, through the overland openings which the Siberian rail line would facilitate.
As Finance Minister from until he was deposed during the suspiciously-timed Russian "revolution," Witte transformed Russia's prospects dramatically from its former role as "bread basket" for British grain trading houses, into a potentially modern industrial nation. Railroads became the largest industry in the country and were inducing transformation of the entire range of related steel and other sectors.
Britain energetically opposed the economic policies of Witte and the Trans-Siberian Railway project with every means at its disposal, including attempts to influence reactionary Russian landed nobility linked to English grain trade. Referring to the new Russian rail project, undertaken with French financing and which would ultimately link Paris to Moscow to Vladivostock by rail, Colqhum declared, "This line will not only be one of the greatest trade routes that the world has ever known, but it will also become a political weapon in the hands of the Russians whose power and significance it is difficult to estimate.
It will make a single nation out of Russia, for whom it will no longer be necessary to pass through the Dardanelles or through the Suez Canal. It will give her an economic independence, through which she will become stronger than she has ever been or ever dreamed of becoming. Support of Turkey, which controlled the vital Dardanelles access to warm waters for Russia, had been a vital part of British geopolitics until that time.
But as German economic links with the Ottoman Empire grew stronger at the end of the century and into the early 's, so did British overtures to Russia, and against Turkey and Germany. It took a series of wars and crises, but following unsuccessful British attempts to block Russia's Trans-Siberian Railway to Vladivstock, which the Russians largely completed in , Russia was badly humiliated in the Russo-Japanese War in , in which Britain had allied with Japan against Russia.
His successor argued that Russia must come to terms with British power, and proceeded to sign over rights to Afghanistan and large parts of Persia to the British, and agreed to significantly curtail Russian ambitions in Asia. Britain had created a web of secret alliances web encircling Germany, and had laid the foundations for its coming military showdown with the Kaiser's Reich. The next seven years were ones of preparation for the final elimination of the German threat.
Following British consolidation of its new Triple Entente strategy of encirclement of Germany and allies, a series of continuous crises and regional wars were unleashed in the "soft underbelly" of Central Europe, the Balkans. In the so-called First Balkan War in , Serbia, Bulgaria, and Greece, backed secretly by England, declared war against the weak Ottoman Turkey, resulting in stripping Turkey of most of her European possessions, followed by a second Balkan War over the spoils of the first, in which Romania joined to help crush Bulgaria.
The stage was being set for Britain's Great European War. On July 28,, three months after Edward Grey's Paris talks, Archduke Francis Ferdinand, heir to the Austrian throne, was assassinated in Sarajevo by a Serb, setting off a predictably tragic chain of events which detonated the Great War. Mohr, Anton. Hanigen, Frank C. Helff erich, Karl. Laffan, R. Reprinted by Dorset Press, New York, Emphasis added-w. Abu-Hakima, Ahmad Mustafa. An examination of the actual financial relations of the principal parties to the war reveals an extraordinary background of secret credits, coupled with detailed plans to reallocate raw material and physical wealth of the entire world after the war, especially areas believed to hold significant petroleum reserves in the Ottoman Empire.
By most accounts, the trigger which unleashed the Great War was pulled by a Serbian assassin on June 28,, at the Bosnian capital Sarajevo, when he murdered Archduke Francis Ferdinand, heir to the Austro-Hungarian throne. Following a month of frenzied negotiations, Austria declared war on July 28 against the tiny state of Serbia, holding her responsible for the assassination. Austria had been assured of German support should Russia back Serbia.
The following day, July 29, Russia ordered mobilization of her army in the event war became necessary. That same day, the German Kaiser telegrammed Czar Nicholas, begging the Czar not to mobilize, and causing the Czar momentarily to rescind his order. On July 31, the German Ambassador to St. Petersburg handed the Czar a German declaration of war against Russia, then reportedly burst into tears and ran from the room.
As France and Russia had mutual defense commitments, Germany decided that France must be defeated swiftly, correctly calculating that Russia would be slower to mobilize. Then, on August 4, only eight days following Austria's declaration of war against tiny Serbia, Britain announced it had declared war against Germany. The nominal reason given was Britain's prior committment to protect Belgian neutrality.
The actual reason was far from any spirit of neighborly charity. Recently declassified internal memoranda from the British Treasury staff of the Chancellor of the Exchequer, Lloyd George, raise additional questions. In January , a full six months before the nominal casus belli at Sarajevo, Sir George Paish, senior British Treasury official, was asked by the Chancellor to make a definitive study of the state of the all-important British gold reserves.
In , the Sterling Gold Standard was the prop of the world monetary system. In fact, Sterling had become so accepted in international commerce and finance for more than 75 years, that Sterling itself was considered "as good as gold. Sir George's confidential memorandum reveals thinking in the highest levels of the City of London at the time: "Another influence fanning the agitation for banking reform has been the growing commercial and banking power of Germany, and the growth of uneasiness lest the gold reserves of London should be raided just before or at the beginning of a great conflict between the two countries.
Paish then discussed his concern over the growing sophistication of the large German trade banks following the Balkan crisis, which had led the German banks to stock up their gold reserves. This memo dealt with the "Effect of War on Our Gold reserves. Saturday morning, August 1, "Dear Mr. Chancellor, The credit system upon which the business of this country is formed, has completely broken down, and it is of supreme importance that steps should be taken to repair the mischief without delay; otherwise, we cannot hope to finance a great war if, at its very commencement, our greatest houses are forced into bankruptcy.
Specie payments gold and silver bullion were promptly suspended by the Bank of England, along with the Bank Act of This decision placed large sums of gold into the hands of the Bank of England, in order that Britain's government could finance food and war materiel purchases for the newly declared war against Germany. Instead of gold, British citizens were given Bank of England notes as legal tender for the duration of the emergency.
By August 4, the British financial establishment was ready for war. But the secret weapon was to emerge later, as the special relationship of' His Majesty's Treasury with the New York banking syndicate of Morgan, as we shall soon see. Oil in the Great War Between when fighting began and when it ended, petroleum had definitively emerged as the recognized key to success of a revolution in military strategy.
England, under the foreign policy guidance of Sir Edward Grey, precipitated what became the bloodiest, most destructive war in modern history, in the months leading up to August According to official statistics, deaths directly due to the war or indirectly inflicted by it numbered between 16,, and 20,,, with the great majority, 10,, or more, being civilian deaths.
The British Empire itself incurred more than , dead and total casualties of almost 2,, in the four-year long world "war to end all wars. This was part of what some English establishment strategists then termed the Great Game, creation of a new global British Empire, whose hegemony would be unchallenged for the rest of the century, a British-led New World Order. A study of the major theaters of the Great War reveals the extent to which securing petroleum supplies was already at the center of military planning.
Oil had opened the door to a terrifying new mobility in modern warfare. The German campaign into Rumania under Field Marshall von Mackensen, had the priority of reorganizing Steaua Romana, the previously English, Dutch, French and Rumanian oil refining, production and pipeline capacities, into a single combine.
During the course of the war Rumania was the only secure German petroleum supply for her entire air force, tank forces, and U-boats. The British campaign in the Dardenelles, the disastrous defeat of Gallipoli, was undertaken to secure the oil supplies of the Russian Baku to the Anglo-French war effort.
The Ottoman Sultan had embargoed shipments of Russian oil out through the Dardenelles.
By , the rich Russian oil fields of Baku on the Caspian Sea were the object of intense military and political effort from the side of Germany, and also Britain, which pre-emptively occupied them for a critical matter of weeks, denying the German General Staff vital oil supplies in the August period. It was proven that oil was at the center of geopolitics. By the end of the First World War, no major power was unaware of the vital strategic importance of the new fuel, petroleum, for future military and economic security.
In , at the onset of the war, the French army had a mere trucks, 60 tractors and airplanes.
By , four years later, France had increased to 70, trucks and 12, airplanes, while the British and, in the final months the Americans, put , trucks and over 4, airplanes into combat service. The final Anglo-FrenchAmerican offensives of the war consumed a staggering 12, barrels of oil daily, on the Western Front. If the Allies do not wish to lose the war, then, at the moment of the great German offensive, they must not let France lack the petrol which is as necessary as blood in the battles of tomorrow.
Lacking sufficient Rumanian oil supply as well as access to the Baku, despite a Russian-German Brest-Litovsk agreement to cease hostilities, German forces were unable to successfully mount a final offensive in , as trucks necessary to bring sufficient reserves were unable to secure petrol. Britain's Foreign Minister, Lord Curzon commented, quite accurately, "The Allies were carried to victory on a flood of oil With the commencement of the war, oil and its products began to rank as among the principal agents by which they would conduct, and by which they could win it. Paperback , pages.
Published October 6th by Pluto Press first published More Details Original Title. Other Editions Friend Reviews. To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up. To ask other readers questions about A Century Of War , please sign up. Lists with This Book. Community Reviews.
Showing Rating details. More filters. Sort order. Aug 29, Marcus rated it did not like it. Let me start by saying that I am a person who instinctively believes that international politics and economical dealings are filled with backdoor deals, self-interest and absolute disregard for common good and decency. A person with such attitude should be a prime target for the grand conspiracy theory presented in this book. Unfortunately for Engdahl, I have also been a student of history for over 25 years and I can say with some certainty that this book is a pile of stinking crap.
Every cardi Let me start by saying that I am a person who instinctively believes that international politics and economical dealings are filled with backdoor deals, self-interest and absolute disregard for common good and decency. Every cardinal error a historian can make can also be found in this book. Presentation of conclusions without a shred of supporting evidence, wild allegations, distortion of facts alternatively omission of facts when that approach suits author's purpose better, factual mistakes and plain lies - this book is riddled with all of those.
This fact is important because vast majority of so called "references" Engdahl uses to support his fantasies for post-war period turn out to be publications from one of LaRouche's publishing houses. A quick investigation discloses that Engdahl and LaRouche are close buddies and exposes LaRouche as a complete fruitcake.
This book consists to a large degree of conspiracy theories this man fabricated over the years.
So please, before you pick up this book, do yourself a favor and do a little of your own research about those two gentlemen. If what you find out discourages you from wasting your time on this horrid collection of fantasies, good for you. If you decide to read it anyway View all 8 comments. Sep 16, Chris rated it really liked it Shelves: real-world. He indulges in guilt by association but he connects the dots in a compelling manner. This is in the style of Howard Zinn as an expose that makes you feel ashamed to have a government like ours. Aug 28, Daniel Dorje rated it really liked it.
This is a highly interesting read about Oil, Banking and Geopolitics. Some of the book verges on conspiracy theory, so it is a book to be read in relation to other sources to cross check on the ideas. But the overall thesis is interesting, and there is a lot of evidence given for most of the contentions. The most important insights are in relation to the financialisation of the UK and then the US Economy, and the geopolitical shift to stop promoting manufacturing growth in favour of seeking value through speculative investment globally.
This is a Thesis explored in Fredrik Jameson and David Harvey's work as well in various forms, and fits also with discussions of the shifting composition of capital and the notion of surplus populations discussed by thinkers like Kalyan Sanyal. So this text opens up a topic that deserves more thorough academic treatment. Jul 28, Naeem rated it liked it.
Engdahl could learn how to write. Still, this is a history of oil and history of world political economy. It is conspiracy theory stuff at its best. Here was the best insight for me : If the United States did not allow the oil shock -- usually most people end up blaming or venerating OPEC countries for their actions -- then the shock would never have happened. There is much, much more here. But there is an overlap between the themes of this book and the film Syriana.
A worthwhile read for Engdahl could learn how to write. Apr 01, Andrei rated it it was amazing. Just great. Need as many people read such books as possible. I generally agree with him and highly regard his opinion, so when he strongly recommended this book, I thought I should check it out. Almost immediately, I could tell the book was a conspiracy theory type of thing.
Ultimately, I think the book is mostly a pile of crap. It was definitely a different way to look at the history of the past or so years. I actually love history and have been reading a ton of books about this general time period from multiple authors with different perspectives. Engdahl just connects stuff tangentially that fits historical dates, but doesn't jive with anything else I have read from any source. For him to be correct, you have to believe that every politician was elected by a cabul of powerful oilmen and not because of any other event occurring in the US or England during the last 40 years.
Ultimately, I think events of the past years are too complex to boil down to a Anglo-American conspiracy for oil. Does he tie a lot of points together that are true? The US definitely agreed to defend Saudi Arabia in exchange for the petro dollar. Does that mean Kissinger was a pawn for oilmen? I tend to doubt it. Interesting points however it is highly possible that mentioned points are more likely to be just wild conspiracy theories than truth Feb 08, Marijan Medved rated it liked it.
It's ok. Listed among the promotional blurbs on the back cover are a former oil minister from Saudi Arabia, an MIT school of management fellow, and the former minister of Guyana, giving an indication that Engdahl has more credibility than much of the other conspiratorial literature out there. Make no mistake though, Engdahl is firmly in the camp of new world order theory proponents; that a global totalitarian government is being covertly created by a small, mostly Anglo-American elite.
A cursory look at Listed among the promotional blurbs on the back cover are a former oil minister from Saudi Arabia, an MIT school of management fellow, and the former minister of Guyana, giving an indication that Engdahl has more credibility than much of the other conspiratorial literature out there. A cursory look at the titles of his other works will confirm this, and at times Engdahl makes overreaching and questionable conclusions in 'A Century of War. What this book offers is an alternative, behind the scenes history of the 20th century.
Engdahl makes a convincing case that with the transition from coal to oil powered industry, strategic control of oil has been a dominant factor of most major global conflicts well before the first gulf war. This includes both world wars, but also countless other conflicts, coups, assasinations, financial market manipulations, and other instruments of control and power. Some of the more hard hitting allegations Engdhal makes include that the OPEC oil embargos were deliberately planned by Anglo-American interests with one purpose being to ensnare and exploit developing countries with exploding levels of debt.
He also argues that ever since the US gold standard was dropped by Nixon, the US has tacitly forced the rest of the world to accept the dollar as the world reserve currency by controling the global oil supply. This is a well researched, much needed, and deeply procative work that will generously reward readers looking to better understand what is really taking place as opposed to the 'official' version of history approved and propagated by the corporate controlled media.
I know, it sounds boring and political and it is both - and worse, at times Engdahl sees virtually everything - like the Middle East War and the implosion of Yugoslavia through the lenses of Anglo-American financial sector conspiracies.