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View Diary: The war that (almost) never was: why World War I was NOT inevitable (26 comments)

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  •  Shorter: if Franz Ferdinand had reigned, (0+ / 0-)

    Austria-Hungary, Romania, Italy, Bulgaria, Greece, Serbia and Montenegro would still all have been contesting for the remnants of the Ottoman Empire.

    So you're imagining that all those countries would have worked things out peacefully, saying "no, I insist; after you." "Oh, no, I couldn't possibly take a coastline! You have it, I'm full"? It beggars imagining.

    At the very least, what I believe would have happened (though counterfactuals are impossible) is that the several Balkan Wars would have led to Russian hegemony over the region, because Russia would have insisted on directing the outcome. That means that Britain, too, would have wanted to direct the outcome (can you imagine them just giving Russia the straits?). And the fact is that Austria-Hungary's Balkan border crises affected Franco-German relations, too. Polite carving up of the spoils of the Ottoman Empire is inconceivable.

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