Professors Beatrice de Graaf, Alex Mikaberidze and Charles Esdaile join me to discuss how integral politics was to the waging of war during this period, covering everything from diplomacy to how countries were run.
Tips gratefully received: https://ko-fi.com/napoleonicist
I enjoyed this podcast very much, there after the Wellington specials a much broader scope of the Napoleonic period was covered. Listening to the last podcast of Zack, which I found fascinating, here a copy what I wrote in the podcast updates channel - "What a highly interesting podcast episode, Beatrice de Graaf shows here deep pan European knowledge, was it a total war, in my view yes, Nabulieone did want to bring down Britain and all means were right to achieve this, he couldn't invade, he couldn't beat the Royal Navy so he waged a ecconomical war to bring Britain on the knees, and by this all Europe had to be brought in line regardless of he was once an Ally or friend or whatever. There couldn't be a neutrality against Napoleon, a Switzerland or Sweden as in WW2 - was just not possible, so all countries were affected and sooner or less were drawn into war. So the geo strategical thinking or politics of Boney had to lead to war, regardless if countries were predators as well or not. As to Metternich, his statement is in line with the behaviour of Bony, who had other offers or opportunities as well to accept peace, indeed the whole French army hoped that the armistic on 1813 would bring peace." Moreover the podacst raised much more interesting topics, such a nationalism. Or what would have happened in case the Boney git would have been killed in one of his battles, or died on the plague, or whatever. This is very difficult to asses, the French Republic would be there, I doubt if their leaders would share the identical insane world domination of Boney - or bringing down Britain at all costs, and how long it stayed in power in that form as the know it. The Holy Roman Empire of German Nations would have in some ways survived as well, or going on longer than being destroyed by Boney. But one can see its failure, as in most wars beforehand, again to preserve the Empire against the onslaught of the French Rebulican armies. Nationalism, did not start out to wage war against other nations, there was a general feel that some people belonged together (not by their race) but by their general way of life and traditions, and it was not bearable any longer to be devided by borders or to have to fight against each other in wars. But what was made out of it, that it was used, and still is used to full effect still today to see only national interests- forgetting that all have to live together - wasn't in my view the fault of the legacy of Napoléon, it had other origins. The NATO and consequently the EU were the most successful peace movements of the last 50 years, sadly all those are crumpling again due to nationalistic approaches and seggregation. I hiked frequnetly over old battle fields, like in the Alps, and see all the misery people had to undergo for - without any reason whatsoever. Today it doesn't matter any longer - you could cross a border without being checked or shot, and talk nicely in Italy to Polish tourists - whereas not so long ago - you would see them as a threat for yourselves.