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Messages - Clemence

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37 Days

A TV mini-series that unveils the behind-closed-doors story of the final weeks before the outbreak of World War I.

The Windsors / Re: Prince Phillip, Duke of Edinburgh Part II
« on: December 09, 2017, 02:54:30 PM »
Just been watching the 2nd episond of the 2nd season of ''The Crown'', maybe someone could help me, was it me or that reporter mentioned somewhat of a grandfather shot at?

As I recently found out about this, I thought maybe someone here will find it interesting:,_the_Beast_of_Berlin

Tsarskoe Selo Town / Re: The train station at Tsarskoe Selo
« on: April 18, 2017, 01:57:05 PM »
Are there any news of the works of renovation proceed?

How very interesting all the information and videos of this topic! I wanted to thank you all for sharing! I am not sure if there are any photos of the tunel though, if it still exists as I understand, why the lack of photos or videos of it?

This documentary seems to be made out of 60.000 metres of film seen and cut by Esfir Shub, a pioneering Soviet filmmaker and editor. I was curious if anyone of the other forum member ever had the opportunity to watch this. It seems much of the original film came from personal film archive of Nicholas II.

Imperial Russian History / Re: Switching Calendars
« on: February 26, 2017, 10:42:00 AM »
Many Westerners are under the impression that most of the Orthodox Churches have adopted the Gregorian Calendar. But such is not the case. The majority of Orthodox Christians still adhere to the Old Style, ecclesiastical calendar. For example, the Russian Orthodox Church, several million Old Calendarists in Greece, Romania, and other lands, the monastic republic of Mount Athos, the Patriarchate of Jerusalem, etc.

I would think well under half a million people would be a more plausible number for Greece.

Tsarevich Alexei Nicholaievich / Re: How Much Longer?
« on: February 26, 2017, 10:07:14 AM »
I confess I rarely enter the boards dedicated to Alexei, but then I did a few days ago and I was thinking, what if? Being a doctor specialized in blood tranfusions myself, I was always somehow intrigued by the history behind blood therapy and a trigger point for it was certainly WWI. As a matter of fact, I remembered that the Soviet Union was somehow a pioneer in the field, although I never got the opportunity to find out more on this. So I looked it up and found out that even in the late 20's there have been Soviet doctors experimenting on various aspects of theories and possible treatments (Alexander Bogdanov to name one).
So, Rusputin is getting to be more and more an enigma, the way I see it, because in an alternative scenario, where the Revolution does not take place, or it does but the Tsar is non overthroned or anyway not killed with all the family, maybe a young Alexei would have the opportunity to be treated somehow. Of course he could also die as a consequence, since there were many factors, blood groups and compatibility issues that were not understood back then (Bogdanov's tragic end could be attributed to such an accident) - but again, who knows what could really happen, had Alexei had a decade or more to live?

Forum Announcements / Re: Other Forums
« on: February 05, 2017, 12:54:34 PM »
I just wanted to say how sorry I am to know that the discussion boards will be closed in a few days. I'm sure many of us came to know many things about movies from those boards. They may say it's for the best but personally I do not feel the same about any of facebook or twitter platforms. Wish they would reconsider!

Forum Announcements / Re: There is any Italians here?!
« on: February 05, 2017, 12:49:20 PM »
Ho appena visto questo tema, non sono Italiana ma sono di Rodi che un tempo apparteneva alle Isole Italiane dell' Egeo, e ho avuto la fortuna di aver studiato in Italia! Mi fa' piacere sapere che ci sono Italiani in giro. Fatevi sentire!

Marie Feodorovna / Re: Film footage of Marie Feodorovna?
« on: February 03, 2017, 01:51:44 PM »
Thank you, I wonder if the old archives of the USSR may have some surprises left yet to be discovered. Somehow watching Edward the King I always feel so close to all those close related royals, and Marie is my favourite!

Marie Feodorovna / Re: Film footage of Marie Feodorovna?
« on: January 31, 2017, 02:04:18 PM »
Do we have her voice recorded somewhere perhaps? I'd love to hear it!

Imperial Russian History / Re: Signs of war in the Pre WW1 period
« on: January 21, 2017, 02:07:57 AM »
OK, let's remember some facts to keep the discussion in focus.

1. The Battle of Kosovo (field) took place in 1389. That is, in 1914 it had happened 525 years ago.
The Battle of El Alamo ended on 6 March 1836. That is, "only" 181 years ago next March. Should Mexicans who live in Texas have to stay indoors on that anniversary?

It seems there are many people who do not realise how little things change in centuries in some parts of the world. The Balkans will always consider Turks as oppressors no matter the date. Glad to know there are countries that have the best relations with their neighbours, but these countries are not in the Balkans.


2. In the Battle of Kosovo Serbs fought against the Turks. Franz Ferdinand was not a Turk.

No, he was not an Ottoman. The Empire he rappresented was in alliance with the Ottoman Empire though. May I remind you that the Austrians and the Ottomans were great allies and there have been many people that have been arrested in Austrian territories and given in custody to the Ottomans who brutally murdered them? That were the terms of friendship between civilized Empires back then and some things will never be forgotten, not by the oppressed.


4. Bosnia had come under Austro-Hungarian rule as the result of a treaty, not by conquest.

So the annexetion and crisis of 1908 never took place?

Imperial Russian History / Re: Signs of war in the Pre WW1 period
« on: January 18, 2017, 01:59:21 PM »
NicolasG I hope you will not mind I quote your posts, you made me go and read more on that historic period I find the most interesting. Obviously being Greek myself I find it hard to see things from the perspective of people from outside of the Balkans, and I believe it's hard for anyone outside the Balkans realise how we in this region feel about history of our countries.

I object to the use of "excuse" to describe the reaction of Austria to the assassination of Franz Ferdinand and his wife. A team of murderers is trained by the Serbian army, provided with weapons by the Serbian army, smuggled across the border by Serbian border guards and hidden in safe houses following the plan of senior Serbian officers, including the head of the Serbian Intelligence service, Dragutin Dmitrijevich, "Apis". The Serbian government knows about it, but fails to do anything to avert it or to give a clear warning to the Austrian authorities.

I also would have used the word ''excuse'' only to imply that Austria had already decided they wanted war and the only thing they were thinking of was how to declare one. As to inform the Austrian authorities, I believe I have read something about diplomats who later said they had, but that was not a good moment for diplomacy, of either side.

''Immediately following the assassinations, the Serbian ambassador to France, Milenko Vesnić, and the Serbian ambassador to Russia, Spalaiković, put out statements claiming that Serbia had warned Austria-Hungary of the impending assassination. Serbia soon thereafter denied making warnings and denied knowledge of the plot. Prime Minister Nikola Pašić himself made these denials to Az Est on 7 July 1914, and to the Paris Edition of the New York Herald on 20 July 1914. During the war, the former Serbian Military Attaché to Vienna, Colonel Lesanin, claimed that Prime Minister Pašić had ordered the Serbian ambassador to Vienna, Jovanović, to warn Austria-Hungary of the plot, but Jovanović carried out his instructions poorly''


Regarding St. Vitus' day, Franz Ferdinand travelled to Bosnia to inspect military exercises that routinely took place in summer. It was not for the Austrian army to coordinate its calendar with Serbian mythology. The predatory intentions of Austria towards Slav countries in the Balkans in Serbian or Russian history books are just a projection of Serbian intentions, their Greater Serbia project. Austria did NOT want to annex Serbia and the Hungarians, who had a say on that matter, even less so. Franz Ferdinand is quoted as saying that annexing Serbia would only add "one more pile of thieves, murderers and rascals, plus a few plum trees" to the Empire.

Serbia was a bomb ticking across the border. The Austrians did not want to take it home. They wanted it deactivated. They would have been glad to see the Bulgarians (other Slavs) or Albania taking part of the land Serbia had acquired after the Balkan wars of 1912-13 and was busy getting ethnic-cleansed. 

I wonder why were Bosnian territories more appealing to Austria, since they annexed them and by so acting they came closer to the Balkans and to Serbia. There must have been good reasons for expanding south taking risks.

''At the Congress of Berlin in 1878, the Austro-Hungarian Foreign Minister Gyula Andrássy obtained the occupation and administration of Bosnia and Herzegovina, and he also obtained the right to station garrisons in the Sanjak of Novi Pazar, which remained under Ottoman administration. The Sanjak preserved the separation of Serbia and Montenegro, and the Austro-Hungarian garrisons there would open the way for a dash to Salonika that "would bring the western half of the Balkans under permanent Austrian influence." "High [Austro-Hungarian] military authorities desired [an...] immediate major expedition with Salonika as its objective."


Austria sent an ultimatum with several points, some of which would have allowed the presence of Austrian troops in Serbia. It was not different to what NATO requested in 1999 to avoid a repetition of the Bosnian ethnic cleansing in Kosovo.

This reminds us that all empires think they can dictate and decide on other countries but they rarely resolve the problems they use as an excuse to invade.

Of course, the NATO ultimatum, as the Austrian one, supposed a limitation of Serbian national sovereignity, but that is the consequence of being a rogue state, as Serbia was, in 1999 and in 1914.

So you made me search the definition of a rogue state:

As early as July 1985, President Reagan had asserted that "we are not going to tolerate … attacks from outlaw states by the strangest collection of misfits, loony tunes, and squalid criminals since the advent of the Third Reich," but it fell to the Clinton administration to elaborate this concept. In the 1994 issue of Foreign Affairs, National Security Advisor Anthony Lake claimed "the reality of recalcitrant and outlaw states that not only choose to remain outside the family [of democratic nations] but also assault its basic values. Lake labeled five regimes as "rogue states": North Korea, Cuba, Iraq, Iran and Libya. In theory, at least, to be classified as a rogue, a state had to commit four transgressions: pursue weapons of mass destruction, support terrorism, severely abuse its own citizens, and stridently criticize the United States. While four of the listed rogue states met all these transgressions, Cuba, though still known for severely abusing its citizens and its strident criticism of the United States, no longer met all the transgressions required for a rogue state and was put on the list solely because of the political influence of the American Cuban community and specifically that of the Cuban American National Foundation. Syria and Pakistan, two nations which were hardly regarded by the United States as paragons of rectitude, avoided being added to the list because the United States hoped that Damascus could play a constructive role in the Arab-Israeli peace process, and because Washington had long maintained close relations with Islamabad—a vestige of the Cold War''


Is there a similar definition of failed empires? Because I think at that point we had on one hand the Balkans that were full of countries that were new and with inexperienced adminitrations and on the other empires so old that were very close to their ends, even if they prefered to ignore the signs. In the July crisis I personally would expect more from Austria not only because they were the stronger but mainly because they should be the wiser and more experienced. Sadly they decided for war and we all know how it ended.

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