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Participant Observation: Germany, The War, And The Road To A European Clash

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Chapter Summary

This chapter focuses on the nature of Russian military leaders in German perception, which would influence planning against Russia during the decade preceding World War I. General Aleksei Kuropatkin, commander first of the field force and ultimately commander in chief in Northeast Asia, received little praise in reports by German observers. Schlieffen, in the midst of drafting the basis of the German mobilization plan by which Germany would deploy her forces against Russia, France, Belgium, and Luxembourg in August 1914, wrote two reports to Chancellor Bernhard von Bulow, addressing the effect of Russian deployment in East Asia on German national security. During the Russo-Japanese War, Germans monitoring military affairs of the tsarist empire focused heavily on the military campaign in Northeast Asia. Germans and others argued that the most important lesson of the conflict, which suggested the possibility of Japanese great-power status, lay in the significance of national zeal.

Keywords: Aleksei Kuropatkin; German mobilization plan; Russo-Japanese War; Schlieffen; World War I



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