2/8/1914 Diplomatic reverses for Germany

Italy is formally allied to Germany and Austria-Hungary, largely because of colonial troubles with France some years previously. But it does not like Austria-Hungary very much, because the Habsburg Empire still holds territory seen by many Italians as naturally part of their country. San Giuliano, the foreign minister, has already tipped off the French that his country will not be siding with Germany and Austria-Hungary. Now the Italian cabinet meets and ratifies that decision.

Germany has separately been negotiating an alliance with Turkey for some time. The two countries have long been close, and Turkey already has a German general, Otto Liman von Sanders, commanding its army. Now Hans von Wangenheim, Germany’s ambassador in Constantinople, is authorised to sign a treaty of alliance with the Ottoman Empire. On the Turkish side the treaty is signed by the Grand Vizier, Said Halim Pasha.

The treaty is for a defensive alliance. Unfortunately, Germany has already invalidated it by declaring war first on Russia.

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