"Imperialism, Alliances, and War" - Study Notes

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After 1870, Europe extended its power over ten million square miles and one hundred fifty million people - about one-fifth of the world's land area and one-tenth of its population. Since the motives for the New Imperialism was economic, European attitudes toward imperialism was hanged. Previous imperialism seized land and settled it with the conqueror's people or established raiding centers to exploit the resources of the dominated area. However, in New Imperialism, a European nation would invest capital in a "less industrialized" country, to develop its mines and agriculture to build railroads, bridges, harbors, and telegraph systems, and to employ great numbers of natives in this process.

Bismarck wanted to improve the new Germany's diplomatic position in Europe after 1871. He hoped that colonial expansion would redirect French hostility against Germany and that German colonies in Africa could be used as a weapon with which to persuade the British to be reasonable.

He insisted that Germany was a satisfied power and wanted no further territorial gains after 1871. He wanted to avoid a new war that might undo his achievements. Bismarck established the Three Emperor's League in 1873 to bring together the conservative empires of Germany, Austria, and Russia. The league failed as result of Austro-Russian rivalry in the Balkans. Bismarck was a complete success. He was allied with three of the great powers and friendly with the other, Great Britain, which held aloof from all alliances.

While Germany's fleet became threatening, Britain would build enough ship to maintain their advantage, and Britain had greater financial resources than Germany. The naval policy's main achievement was to begin a great naval race with Britain. The threat alarmed British opinions so much that Britain abandoned their traditional attitudes and policies. In 1902, the first violation in Britain isolation came and concluded an...