Author Topic: Nic II's Plans to go abroad April 1917  (Read 40361 times)

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Constantinople

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Re: Nic II's Plans to go abroad April 1917
« Reply #45 on: April 11, 2010, 12:41:34 PM »
Ann
      i actually understood all that before and that is the standard explanation in most history books.   What I was eluding to was if the British government had actually made a verbal agreement with the Russian government to get the Imperial family out using a British cruiser and didn't when they had a chance, either it was saboutaged because Kerensky or the British government welched on the deal.  If that was the case, then, given the consequences, it should be talked about.

Offline TimM

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Re: Nic II's Plans to go abroad April 1917
« Reply #46 on: April 11, 2010, 05:13:24 PM »
Yeah, clearly somebody went back on their word, and NAOTMAA suffered their terrible fate because of it.  It would be interesting to read the records and see exactly what was going on.  I heard that, if such an evacuation had taken place, the Kaiser would have told his navy not to interfere (he was the first cousin of Alexandra).
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Naslednik Norvezhskiy

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Re: Nic II's Plans to go abroad April 1917
« Reply #47 on: April 11, 2010, 05:36:58 PM »
Yes, the Germans sent Lenin into Russia and offered the IF free passage out, but they refused. Finis Romanovii.
« Last Edit: April 11, 2010, 05:39:38 PM by Fyodor Petrovich »

Offline Robert_Hall

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Re: Nic II's Plans to go abroad April 1917
« Reply #48 on: April 11, 2010, 06:05:50 PM »
Many of those papers are available to researchers and are cited in the latest, better works on the subject.
  The comparison with the  Bourbons of France is superficially easy to make, but the situations were  very different.   In  case of Louis XVI, their  fate was sealed by trying to escape and seek help from the "enemies " of France. Much of that was MA's doing, but it was understandable, as she was trying to save her family.
 In NII's case, their fate was sealed by inaction.
 As were are talking  hypothetically,  IMO,   NII should have secured the safe exile of his family before signing the abdication.  Even though the children were sick, I think they could have been evacuated safely. I do not know if the yachts had been converted to war use, but if not, and if it was known they were carrying the IF into neutral exile, I am sure safe passage  would have been guaranteed buy all sides.
 Of course this is all academic, we all know perfectly well what actually happened.
« Last Edit: April 11, 2010, 06:09:40 PM by Robert_Hall »
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Offline ..dlnec1

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Re: Nic II's Plans to go abroad April 1917
« Reply #49 on: April 11, 2010, 07:47:13 PM »
I agree Robert, the family should have moved to the Lower Dacha in the Peterhof Park. As Rodzianko said in the event of a fire you evacuated the invalids first. AF made some very bad choices, but saying that its so easy to judge with hindsight.

As for the British civil population living in circumstances as bad as the Russian civil population, that's just ludicrous. Yes we had rationing and the losses at the front were very bad, but we had no enemy on our soil, we had a modern infrastructure, we were not an 18th century power in a 20th century world.

I have always felt so sorry for King George V, he did what he had to do, put his throne and nation first, above familiar feeling and against his own wishes. That is one reason the Monarchy is still still extant here in the United Kingdom. It was Marx who always believed it would be the UK that would go communist before the other nations, as we were the first great industrial nation.

Offline Robert_Hall

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Re: Nic II's Plans to go abroad April 1917
« Reply #50 on: April 11, 2010, 08:21:00 PM »
Britain was certainly not a  3rd world country, but   conditions  for the industrial  workers were indeed horrid.   Unfair pay,  no education or health care,  the oppressive class system, preventing   social progression., etc. This was not Britain alone, it was endemic in all industrialised countries.    The unions\ movement was getting militant and achieved benefits that were  well deserved,  begrudgingly, by the factory owners and the government, but they were forced to acquiesce. All this and the   hell of  a war that took it's toll on all classes but especially the lower ones. Not an enviroment to  bring an exiled autocat into.
 I agree, GV had some some heartbreaking decisions to make.  But as you said, he  made them, for better or worse for his country and throne. To me, the faults lies directly with N&A, their indecision, faltering logic  and  stubborn pride. Nicholas' fatalism was also a hindrance to  logic. If he had any of that to begin with. back to Britain for  a bit; thes situation became worse at the end of the war, with de-mob.  Thousand of soldiers released with no  jobs to go to,  any benefits to help survive on,  no medical care for injuries received. That definitely would not have looked well for an exiled, privileged  autocratic. No matter how close he was to the British RF. By then, of course, it was too late anyway.
 i
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Constantinople

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Re: Nic II's Plans to go abroad April 1917
« Reply #51 on: April 11, 2010, 11:07:06 PM »
The yachts were in dry dock and as for trusting the Kaiser's word on anything, he is the person who had ultimate authority for unleashing Lenin into Russia.

Constantinople

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Re: Nic II's Plans to go abroad April 1917
« Reply #52 on: April 12, 2010, 08:10:02 AM »
The British held Arkangel until 1919 and there were a number of cruisers that could have evacuated the İmperial family.  Alexander Guchkov was the minister of war in the provisional government and he, among other ministers would have had direct contact with the British government.  There is one article called Alexander Guchkov and the End of the Russian Empire and if anyone can access this, it may have some clues about whether the British had actually made an offer to get the İmperial family out of Russia.  The Tsar abdicated in March 1917 and the family was moved to Tobolsk in August 1917 and perhaps the speed of thıs move had something to do with the possibility of monarchist elements working with their British counterparts on a plan to bring the İmperial family out through Murmansk (Arkangel).  Does anyone have any information on what Allied ships were in St Petersburg at the time of the February revolution?

Offline Robert_Hall

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Re: Nic II's Plans to go abroad April 1917
« Reply #53 on: April 12, 2010, 08:25:40 AM »
Lenin was not the Kaiser's idea.  He  umlimately had to approve though, or defy his govenment  & commanders.
  He did not expect the abdication and  sinceely wanted to assist the family getting out of Russia. They, of course, refused any  such aid from him.
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Offline Kalafrana

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Re: Nic II's Plans to go abroad April 1917
« Reply #54 on: April 12, 2010, 08:26:13 AM »
I have never heard of there being any British ships in St Petersburg at the time of the February Revolution, or, indeed, at any time during WW1. There were some Royal Navy submarine operations in the Baltic, but no surface ships, as far as I know. We need to remember that the narrows between Sweden and Denmark are only a few miles wide, and forcing a passage into the Baltic would present the same difficulties as forcing the Dardenelles, only more so, given that there was a large modern German fleet based at Wilhelmshaven and another at Kiel. The British were using Archangel because they couldn't use the Baltic (I have a nice vision of Alexandra and the girls embarking in a submarine in white dresses!). I do have a book on naval operations from Archangel, and will look it up when I get home this evening - as I remember they were very old and clapped-out ships, and one at least was sunk as a blockship during the Zeebrugge Raid of April 1918.

As to Archangel, there is also the practical problem that it is ice-bound in winter, unlike Murmansk (which, I think, was in the process of being built at this time). Not sure how long it takes for the ice to melt, but, at a guess, it would be April or later.

Ann

Constantinople

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Re: Nic II's Plans to go abroad April 1917
« Reply #55 on: April 12, 2010, 10:04:37 AM »
There were ice breakers during that time.  I know of one cruiser, HMS Fox that was involved in that area.  Sir John Jellicoe was first lord off the Admiralty at this point.  Was it possible that he had made a promise on behalf of the British Government.  He was replaced abruptly at the end of 1917.
  How far is Murmansk from St Petersburg?  Perhaps one of the reasons the Imperial family was moved to Tobolsk was that the British were communicating about expatriating the Imperial family. This is conjecture but it would be interesting if there was a basis for it to be found.  If anyone has access to the Royal navy archives, perhaps the answer lies there.

Alixz

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Re: Nic II's Plans to go abroad April 1917
« Reply #56 on: April 12, 2010, 10:16:06 AM »
The conditions of the working poor in the UK were just as bad as those in Russia.  Socialism was on the rise and King George knew that he could lose his throne if he made the wrong decision.

Remember the line "his majesty's government does not insist..."  What a way to get around saying no out right.

Even after all that had happened to other monarchs in the past including Charles II in the UK, one would think that the execution of the Imperial family should have been seen as a possibility if not a certainty.

Remember, also, that many other Romanovs were executed just for being Romanovs.  Grand Duke Michael and Grand Duchess Ella and her group were executed before NAOTMAA.  The trend had begun.

Also remember that Haakon of Norway was married to Maude of Great Britain the daughter of King Edward VII and the sister of King George V.  That made a difference in where he could go.  Also King Haakon was not an autocrat.

I understand why Nicholas and his family would not go to Germany, but the Swiss are always neutral (bless them) why not there?  The Swiss took in the Greek Royal family more than once.


Constantinople

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Re: Nic II's Plans to go abroad April 1917
« Reply #57 on: April 12, 2010, 10:25:31 AM »
Apparently Milyukov negotiatied for exile in Britain with David Lloyd George, therefore the idea that Alexandra thought a British cruiser was coming for her and her family was not that absurd.  The question is why didnt they go immediately into exile.  I would think that this offer would have been open for at least a while.  Conceivably the imperial family would have been free to leave Russia before October 1917 so the question was why didnt they and why did Kerensky hold them under arrest during this period.

Alixz

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Re: Nic II's Plans to go abroad April 1917
« Reply #58 on: April 12, 2010, 10:41:32 AM »
The first problem was the out break of the measles which could be fatal at that time.

Everyone had to be measles free before the could be moved.  Although I think that I would have taken the chance and move them as each began to heal.

Kerensky had a lot on his mind other than the abdicated tsar and his family.  It may not have been at the top of his list.

From Tsarskoe Selo, the idea was to not go through major railway hubs which were mainly taken over by the railway workers who had become Soviet supporters.  Anywhere along the Eastern Front the railways were not safe.  Grand Duchess Olga and Empress Marie found that out as they moved toward Kiev and then on to the Crimea.

Constantinople

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Re: Nic II's Plans to go abroad April 1917
« Reply #59 on: April 12, 2010, 11:14:33 AM »
Lenin only arrived at the end of  April 1917, and it took him a while to get things organized.  My feeling is that once the offer came in from England, Nicholas and Alexandra probably did not think about a back up plan.  The measles is a plausible reason however there is no reason why the sufferers couldn't  have been transerred by ambulance to a train and then to Arkangel.  it would be interesting to know if any other countries offered exile.