Was Austria-Hungary doomed to fail?

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cptstennes
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Austria Hungary

Post by cptstennes » 20 Sep 2002 18:47

The Hapsburg monarchy was a dynastic state and as such was obsolete in the 20th century. The only factor that held it together was the monarch, the aged Franz Josef. The Germans were the preeminent group and the Czechs the most disaffected. It was called, along with the Ottoman sultanate, the ramshackle monarchy. If you want a good take on the Austro Hungarian Army read the "Good Soldier Schweik" which is funny if you get a good translation. The Croatians were loyalist but when you have an army of several unassimilated minorities things fall apart. As the Army did. BTW, Conrad von Hotzendorf also wrote his memoirs. The Germans said, "We are handcuffed to a corpse" I think that it was in 1807 that the Austrian Emperor Francis gave up the title of Holy Roman Emperor and became Emperor of Austria. One more thing in this disjointed disquisition, if you look at the map of Austria Hungary at the end it looks like a flea. Regards, F.

Abel Ravasz
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Post by Abel Ravasz » 22 Sep 2002 14:32

Svejk [a.k.a. Schweik] is an excellent read, I recommend it too!

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johnny_bi
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Post by johnny_bi » 25 Sep 2002 11:37

Svejk --- good book ... I'd wish that all soldiers would read that book :D

BI

Gwynn Compton
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Post by Gwynn Compton » 26 Sep 2002 08:54

I think that it was in 1807 that the Austrian Emperor Francis gave up the title of Holy Roman Emperor and became Emperor of Austria


Was he the last Holy Roman Emperor?

Gwynn

viriato
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Post by viriato » 26 Sep 2002 19:04

Gwynn Compton asked:

Was he the last Holy Roman Emperor?


Yes he was.

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GLADIVM
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Post by GLADIVM » 30 Sep 2002 06:21

AH , as all empires , has outlived itself .
already at the time of Napoleonic wars , the only interest of the emperor and its councillors was to perpetuate the " status quo " , which means to keep the situation as it was without any major change or improvment .
When an Empire stops to look for expansion but only tries to keep itself in power it means that its time has come .
Beside AH also had the problem of nationalities which was never properly addressed and also in this case the only postponed the end .
Of course AH survived the Napoleonic wars and even the 1848 revolution in Austria and its provinces but Franz Joseph was unable to breath new life in the empire ,may be that he should have condsidered a true federal empire without domination from German and Hungarian nationalities or renounced to some provinces which were going to bring too much future trouble , Italian areas for example , or making liberals reforms but nothing was done and the empire slowly descended into complacency and oblivion .
Franz Joseph himself with his personale tragedies well represented his sinking empire , his son suicide for never clearly explained reasons , his wife Sissy assassination by an anarchist in Switzerland , his enstrangement from a wife he dearly loved in the beginning . All these sacrifices for the empire must have haunted him when the end was near and he left a bankrupted empire in the midst of a lost war .
Also a dinastic empire started to be an anacromism in the 20th century and furthermore the too long life of Franz Joseph prevented that a young and energetic heir , if there was one , could restart the empire in a new footing but nothing was done and AH disppeared from history .

Gwynn Compton
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Post by Gwynn Compton » 30 Sep 2002 09:13

Franz Ferdinand believed in granting greater autonomy to the provinces from my knowledge. Does anyone else know what the Crown Prince planned to do?

Gwynn

Herzog
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Was Austria-Hungary doomed to fail?

Post by Herzog » 30 Sep 2002 17:43

No, I don´t think so. The Danube Monarchy could have survived if the Serbians had not had such a hate against the Habsburgs and the German-Austrians. It could have also survived if the British had stood with Austria and if the Great War had not taken place. I even dare to say that without the breakdown of the monarchies in Austria and Germany the 20th century would have been more peaceful!

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Post by Gwynn Compton » 01 Oct 2002 06:51

Had Austria retaliated instantly for the assassination of the Archduke, do you think war would have broken out? I think even Russia would have been hardpressed to go to the aid of assassins. By the time Austria-Hungary did go to war, the shock of the assassination had worn off, and I feel, that the months delay, was costly in preventing Austria-Hungary from being able to deal with Serbia in isolation.

Gwynn

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Tim Smith
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Post by Tim Smith » 02 Oct 2002 15:32

Retaliated instantly? How? By mobilising at once and invading Serbia immediately?

If AH had done this, before the assassin could even be put on trial, Russia would be outraged at Austrian aggression against Serbia without any proof of Serbian involvement in the assassination, without even giving the Serbian government time to answer the Austrian allegations, let alone comply with the Austrian demands. Austria would have been accused of exploiting the situation and acting in haste without forethought or respect for the process of diplomacy and international law. The course of events would have been the same.

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johnny_bi
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Post by johnny_bi » 03 Oct 2002 11:37

Herzog ...

And your opinion is based on ???? :?

BI

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GLADIVM
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Post by GLADIVM » 09 Oct 2002 05:36

Herzog , you are austrian , therefore is natural for you to desire that AH would have survived but WWI was unavoidable and besides I cannot see a reason why England should have on the Austrian side .
If not for the assassination in Serajevo , WWI would have started a few yeras later , Germany & England were on a collision course and soon or later would have resorted to force , Furthermore AH wanted to teach a lesson to Serbia and would have jumped at the first chance , Serbia also was anxious for a fight and Russia would have not remained on the sideline.
And even if WWI would have been avoided by some sort of miracle , still AH would have disappeared in its form of empire and dual monarchy , the nationality issue was very strong in the early 19 century and would have ignited revolutions and unrest which would have compelled the Empire to split or change its form in order to survive in a diminished way.
Also the unnatural alliance with Italy would have to end sooner or later and at first signs of AH troubles , Italy would have tried to gain Trentino and Friuli Venezia Giulia , may be not succesfully but surely causing a
lot of trouble to AH .
Add to all this the too long reign , 68 years , of Franz Joseph which prevented any significant change and reform in the Empire and you find out that AH was beyond salvation .
It is perhaps a sad event but like peoples , empires also have a birth , youth , adulthood , old age and finally death . AH could not escape this fate in fact survived already for a very long time .

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SerbTiger
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Post by SerbTiger » 09 Oct 2002 09:09

Herzog,

Serbia's was hated by Austria-Hungary because it was an example of a small Slavic nation being independent.
The Hapsburgs new that this would cause others to want independence, Czech for example deserted the AH army in huge numbers. Even the Croats the most loyal to the Hapsburgs would have eventually wanted independence .

WW1 was bound to happen if it wasn't for the assassination, AH would have invaded Serbia sooner or later, and would be humiliated by the Serbian Army either way since the Serbs possesed the best general of WW1.
Between August 12 and mid December 1914 Austria-Hungary had lost 227,000 men and 179 guns compared to Serbian losses of around 70,000 and 42 guns. The Serbs noted with some pride that they were the only victorious Allied power"



Source:The Great War, 1914-18

cybercat
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Post by cybercat » 24 Dec 2002 14:54

The Croats were agitating for an independent Croatian homeland well before WWI. HSP (Hrvatska Stranka Prava which later in the 1930s became the Ustasa movement) wasn't formed originally as most Serbs think to commit genocide against the Serbs. Originally HSP was formed in the 1870s to challenge Austro-Hungarian rule and to forge an independent Croatia.

The Serbs adopted the mantle of oppressor in the eyes of the HSP after WWI especially after the assassination of Stjepan Radic of the HSS. Radic because of his popularity in Croatia, was seen as a potential president by most Croats of an independent Croatia. Also the Serbian king dismissed parliament and ruled by decree this, and "reorganising" Yugoslavia into banates, didn't endear him to his Croatian "subjects".

Eventually with Nazi/Fascist help HSP evolved into HOP and then the Ustasa movement. The rest is history and the slaughter of the Serbs in Krajina and Bosnia began after April 1941.


It must be pointed out however, that there were Serb regiments in the Austro-Hungarian Army that were loyal to the Austrians and not to Serbia and that Serb fought Serb in that period.

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tyskaorden
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Post by tyskaorden » 03 Jan 2003 19:15

The involvement of Serbia in the assasination was quite clear from the beginning and in the aftermath of chock felt all over Europe at the time, it is quite possible that if AH had reacted swiftly and punished Serbia they might have gotten away with it.

Even Russia would have been reluctant to help the regicide Serbia despite the alleged panslavic feelings.

As for the future plans of Franz Ferdinand, I have seen indications the he intended to transform the dubble-monarchy into a tripple-monarchy. That is to create a slavic kingdom of equal status to the Empire of Austria and the Kingdom of Hungary.

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