Was Tsar Nicholas II a good ruler?

@Fries The thought of Imperial Germany winning is not that good. There's a really weird tendency among people (not here and not you) to treat William II's Germany as "better" than Herr Hitler's.
It was, for Europeans.
Willy didn't turn millions of people to ash in specialized murder factories.
It's a low, bar but he clears that one easily.
 
I would note that European monarchies generally did a very poor job of transitioning to participatory mass politics, outside of the special cases of the long-constitutional monarchies of northern Europe
I'd say that the Germans, Austrians and even Italians did transition, but their Monarchies were ended by outsiders after a lost war.
Extra points for Greek Republic reinstating their monarchy, till that was ended again by a Military Junta.
 
I'd say that the Germans, Austrians and even Italians did transition, but their Monarchies were ended by outsiders after a lost war.
Extra points for Greek Republic reinstating their monarchy, till that was ended again by a Military Junta.

I am not sure about that.

Germany stopped being monarchical because of revolution; I suspect that the Entente did not care what system of government Germany had so long as it could sign on the dotted line.

With Italy, the Savoyards did fall, but they fell because of their complicity in a war that devastated Italy and because they lost a referendum. They might plausibly have won this referendum, to be sure.

With the Hapsburgs, their problem was that any attempt at restoration might also be seen as an attempt to restore the fallen empire. The example of Hungary also suggests that local elites did not actually want to concede power to restored dynasts.
 
It was, for Europeans.
Willy didn't turn millions of people to ash in specialized murder factories.
It's a low, bar but he clears that one easily.

I think that the general consensus is that while the Second Reich was far from Hitler's Germany, a Second Reich that did successfully conquer most of Europe would have been energized by this victory in some unpleasant ways.
 
I consider this dangerously close to apologia for anti-Semitism. It's like coming into a discussion on Hitler and saying, "Oh, we can't say he was a bastard because that relies on subjective definitions of bastardry."
You can “consider” whatever you want but don’t attribute your fantasies to me.
 
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I think that the general consensus is that while the Second Reich was far from Hitler's Germany, a Second Reich that did successfully conquer most of Europe would have been energized by this victory in some unpleasant ways.
I'm dubious about your claimed "general consensus" and curious about what these "unpleasant" after-effects of a Central Powers victory would be, especially compared to the historical effects of the Great War.
Certainly a German conquest of "most of Europe" is several tads unlikely without divergences well before 1900.
 
I'm dubious about your claimed "general consensus" and curious about what these "unpleasant" after-effects of a Central Powers victory would be, especially compared to the historical effects of the Great War.
Certainly a German conquest of "most of Europe" is several tads unlikely without divergences well before 1900.

For starters, a German conquest of most of Europe is implied if you are talking about a Central Powers victory. Unless you are assuming that Austria-Hungary did all the victorious fighting which, well.

Niall Ferguson's blithe assumption that a Germany that had first quickly conquered France and Belgium then managed to seize most of Russia's.western provinces would go on to create an organization like the European Union, besides speaking of his own Euroskeptic prejudices, rather misses a lot of point.
 
For starters, a German conquest of most of Europe is implied if you are talking about a Central Powers victory. Unless you are assuming that Austria-Hungary did all the victorious fighting which, well.
:rolleyes: You are, deliberately I suspect, missing the point. What Germany to conquer? All of France? Italy? Switzerland? Denmark? German gains in the west would be small, part of Belgium, and Luxembourg, at most. In the east direct territorial acquisitions would be small, Poland, Finland et cetera would be satellites not conquests.

Niall Ferguson's blithe assumption that a Germany that had first quickly conquered France and Belgium then managed to seize most of Russia's.western provinces would go on to create an organization like the European Union, besides speaking of his own Euroskeptic prejudices, rather misses a lot of point.
Why are you attempting to fight a strawman? I have not brought up Ferguson's beliefs, in fact I don't think he or his opinions have been cited, or even mentioned, in this entire thread.
 

Quig

Banned
Alexandra's grand ducal house of Hesse and by Rhine is fascinating. I was interested to read that the government of the modern German state of Hesse in the Federal Republic considers the Grand Duchy to be its legal predecessor even though modern Hesse also contains much of Prussian Hesse and lacks the Grand Duchy's Rhenish Hesse.
 
Sigh.
Stolypin was extremely conservative and attempted to enact the absolute minimum reforms needed to maintain the aristocratic status quo and stave off another peasant's revolt. In addition he wished to improve the popularity of the Tsar, and the Tsarist system, and hence reduce support for the Social Democrats and revolutionaries. Then there was the financial motive, improved land productivity meant more money for the state coffers. Finally improved labour mobility could increate the urban, industrial, workforce and weaken unions and radicals in the cities.
These reforms did not address most of the other problems; lack of legal unions, lack of political influence et cetera. Look at the "Fundamental Laws" and how quickly any Duma that opposed the Tsarist system was dissolved (two and five months). It was only after gutting the electoral system, increased voting rights for landowners and disenfranchisement of many of the Kadets, that a suitably compliant "parliament" was created.
our talk was economic reforms not political system. Point stand that NII supported economic liberalization which benifitted the country against democratic will
2. We;re discussing Nicholas II's incompetence, not Kerenskys.
we;re discussing cause of revolution
 
I want to say a bit of both, but it does occur to me that if Nicholas had tried to quit the war at any time before the February Revolution, there may well have been a coup against him to keep Russia in the war. Still would have been worth a try considering the state the country was in.
he could not have exited because it means letting germany fight russia without allies
 
our talk was economic reforms not political system. Point stand that NII supported economic liberalization which benifitted the country against democratic will

we;re discussing cause of revolution
1. No, Nicholas supported certain reforms to stave off revolution.
2. Look at the title of this thread.
3,000 is not far fewer than 3,500
Look at the numbers involved.
he could not have exited because it means letting germany fight russia without allies
Or he, or his more competent ministers, could renegotiate the old treaty with Terms and detach them from Austria-Hungary.
 
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In fairness, we know how poorly the Bolshevik/Marxist-Leninist approach worked out for the Balts and Poles, and how much worse it was for the people trapped in the Soviet Union from its foundation.

This does not mean that revolution was not justified, of course. Noting what some of the Whites wanted and how Russian Tsarism worked, I wonder just what an industrialized but politically deeply regressive Russia might have become. Something like fascism is imaginable.
What if we get a smart white leader like Denkin? He seems Saner then Von Sternberg, Kwithout Korlack's hot air.
 
Mush the same as other non-Orthodox Christians, with some variations; restrictions on employment, access to education, taxation et cetera. Non-Orthodox churches were legally prohibited from accepting converts from Russian Orthodoxy, with frequent police agents provocateur.

The "Uniates", i.e. Eastern-Rite Catholics were suppressed several times, with priests imprisoned.
At the beginning of the twentieth century the Tsarist regime banned or restricted all expressions of Christianity other than Russian Orthodoxy. Various Protestant groups were labelled as "Stundists" (an odd group of Slavic Evangelicals, originally from Ukraine, and with a theology based on German Mennonites) and subject to harassment and arrest.
Most repressed were the Schismatics (the 'Old Believers') who still faced execution, imprisonment, and punitive taxation. Next were the Baptists (mainly in the Caucasus and Ukraine), Pashkovites, Methodists, and Seventh-Day Adventists.

Mainstream Catholics were legally recognised but subject to the usual state persecution, 'Russification' and harassment. Gnenerally the most tolerated were the German derived Lutherans, who were merely harassed, confined to certain regions, taxed and faced bureaucratic impediments.

Religious freedom had been guaranteed by via Nicholas II’s Edict of Toleration (of 1905). Of course once the the immediate threat to his rule Nicholas II reneged on that promise .
Im curious did the Roman Catholic Church see Russia, as mission territiory or with its own hierarchy prior to 1917?
 
As someone in the traditionalist camp I would have liked to have seen Tsarist Russia survive.

The problem many of the Tsars supporters have to acknowledge is that it did not, despite Nicholas starting as an absolutist who inherited an empire with a growing population, rising literacy, expanding infrastructure, growing industrial and agricultural production, and a loyal army.

So if he did well, how did things go the way they did? How did he lose the loyalty of his army and society?

You don’t have to root against Russia or deny Nicholas Sainthood, but clearly something went wrong while Nicholas was an absolutist. He failed to navigate the uneven situation he inherited, whatever his personal character and motives.
I think he got destracted. First with the health of the Tzarivitch, Then with trying to take Korea, from the Japanese.
 
Im curious did the Roman Catholic Church see Russia, as mission territiory or with its own hierarchy prior to 1917?
Missionary work in Russia was effectively illegal if directed at conversion of Orthodox. There were a couple of hundred RCC clergy in Russia in 1910 and about half-a-million laity. The clergy operated under various bureaucratic restrictions.
Catholicism was the religion of the rebellious Poles, and hence suspect.
 
Just siphon off the bigots around him. I've got it, Don;t let Phleve into the state council, before the fall of the Romanov's He was pushing all that Protocol's garbage. Was Anton a democrat as we see it, no but he outways everyone else in the white camp.
 
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