Libmonster ID: MD-894
Author(s) of the publication: B. B. CROSS

As you know, as early as 1883, Romania was involved by its rulers in an alliance with Austria-Hungary and Germany. However, when the First World War began, Romania did not support its allies, remained neutral, and in 1916 entered the war on the side of the Entente. The question arises: under the influence of what factors did such a drastic change in the foreign policy course of the ruling circles of Romania take place? The answers given to this question by bourgeois Romanian historians and publicists cannot satisfy us in any way.

Bourgeois authors were guided by idealistic concepts and, as a rule, ignored socio-economic factors. True, some of them noted the dominance of Austro-German capital in Romania (N. Basilescu, M. Giuvara, I. Ursu, M. Bibiria, G. Choriceanu , etc.), but in fact denied its influence on government policy. They portrayed the situation as if all classes and groups of Rumanian society were fighting against the entanglement of Austro-German capital. On the other hand, they ignored the role of entente capital and its influence on the policy of the ruling circles. Most bourgeois historians and publicists tried to present Romania's foreign policy at the beginning of the 20th century as a national one. Only a few of them criticized (from the standpoint of bourgeois nationalism) the ruling circles for their Germanophilism. Thus, N. Iorga in a number of his works proved that the rulers of Romania began to move away from Austria-Hungary and Germany only under strong pressure from public opinion .2 He contrasted the entire Romanian nation with the Germanophiles as something unified and homogeneous, without even trying to analyze its social structure and identify the interests and goals (including foreign policy) of various classes.

Bourgeois authors attributed Romania's departure from Austria-Hungary mainly to political motives, primarily to the position taken by Austria-Hungary during the Balkan Wars, when, in the opinion of the Romanian bourgeoisie, it did not provide Romania with adequate support in the conflict with Bulgaria. As a second reason for Romania's departure from the Triple Alliance, national oppression was pointed out.

1 N. Basilesco. La Roumanie dans la guerre et dans la paix. T. I - II. P. 1919; M. Djuvara. La guerre roumaine 1916 - 1918. P. 1919; I. Ursu. Pourqoui la Roumanie a fait la guerre. P. 1918; M. Bibiri-Sturia. Cresterea influenei economice germane in Romania. Bucuresti. 1915; G.D. Cioriceanu. La Roumanie economique et ses rapports avec l'etranger de 1860 a 1915. P. 1928.

2 См., например., N. Iorga. Histoire des roumains et de leur civilisation. P. 1920, p. 288; ejusd. Istoria romanilor. Vol. X. Bucuresti. 1939, pp. 327 - 329 s. a.

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Romanians were exposed to Transylvania and which caused the growth of their national liberation movement and the national unification movement in Romania. This led to the conclusion that when the Romanian rulers entered the First World War, they allegedly sought the liberation of their oppressed brothers and the unification of all Romanians within the framework of a single national state. However, the Transylvanian question did not arise in 1914. It existed as early as the end of the 19th century, but this did not prevent the Romanian ruling circles from entering into an alliance with Austria-Hungary and Germany and from renewing it several times in the future (most recently in 1913). The reference to the contradictions with Austria-Hungary during the Balkan Wars is also not convincing enough. It may be recalled that during these same years, as a rule, Russia was no less (and sometimes even more) resolute in defending the interests of Bulgaria. However, this circumstance did not prevent Romania's rapprochement with Russia, which took place on the eve of the First World War. It is clear that both of these factors did not play a decisive role (although they accelerated the process of Romania's departure from the Triple Alliance). In the works of Western bourgeois historians (E. Ebel, E. Gottschalk, K. Grim, P. Ostwald, D. Badevan, R. W. Seton-Watson, L. Cialdea 3 and others) present essentially the same basic theses as in Romanian bourgeois historiography. This is primarily due to the commonality of their class positions and worldviews.

Marxist historians, both Romanian and Soviet, have devoted many works to the study of Romania's foreign policy during the First World War4 . However, much less attention was paid to the analysis of the prerequisites for the foreign policy reorientation of the ruling circles of Romania on the eve of the First World War. To solve this problem, it is necessary to trace how the socio-economic system of Romania, the interests of various classes and social groups determined the country's foreign policy orientation. Such an analysis is attempted in this paper.

Romania at the beginning of the twentieth century was a backward, agrarian country with numerous feudal remnants, economically and financially dependent on foreign capital .5 It was characterized by a number of features typical of underdeveloped countries: the predominance of agriculture over industry, light industry over heavy industry, and mining over manufacturing; the structure of foreign trade typical of backward countries (Romania imported metals, machinery, and finished industrial products, while exporting agricultural products and petroleum products); and the predominance of foreign capital in the country's economy and the lack of their own; narrowness of the internal

3 E. Ebel Rumanien und die Mitteimachte von der russisch-turkischen Krise 1877/78 bis zum Bukarester Frieden vom 10. August 1913. B. 1939; E. Gottschalk. Rumanien und der Dreibund bis zur Krise 1914. "Die Kriegsschuldfrage". B. 1927, N 7; K. Griem. Rumaniens Bundnispolitik. Kiel. 1948; P. Ostwald. So fing es an. Baden-Baden. 1957; D. Basdevant. Terres roumains contre vents et marees. P. 1961; R. W. Seton-Watson. A History of the Roumanians. L. 1934; L. Cialdea. La politica estera della Romania nel quarantennio prebellico. Bologna. 1933; D. Dvoichenko- Markov. Austria-Rumanian Relations. 1883-1916. "Balkan Studies". Vol. 9. 1968, N 4, pp. 41-54. A somewhat different position is taken by the American historian Sh. D. Spector, who rejects the crucial importance of the Transylvanian question (Sh. D. Spec tor. Rumania at the Paris Peace Conference. N. Y. 1962, p. 229).

4 I. Gheorghiu. Relafiile romano-ruse in perioada neutrality Romaniei (1914 - august 1916). "Studii si referate privind istoria Rominieb. Partea II-a. Bucuresti. 1954; V. Liveanu. 1918. Din istoria luptelor revolutionare din Rominia. Bucuresti. 1960; F. I. Notovich. Bukharestsky mir 1918, Moscow, 1959; V. N. Nartsov. Romania in the first World Imperialist War. Kishinev, b/g; V. N. Vinogradov, Romania during the First World War, Moscow, 1969, et al.

5 See V. I. Lenin, PSS. Vol. 27, p. 413; see also N. P. Frolov. Agrarian relations in bourgeois-landlord Romania. Chisinau. 1958, p. 37; G. Ravash. From the history of Romanian oil, Moscow, 1958, p. 34.

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low level of consumption; the predominance of foreign goods in the domestic market; the presence of comprador strata among the ruling classes, which are closely associated with foreign capital. Naturally, the political development of Romania also had many aspects common to all underdeveloped countries.

The vast majority of the country's population was engaged in agriculture .6 At the beginning of the twentieth century, capitalist relations were also developing in it. However, this development followed the Prussian path. Many feudal remnants remained in the countryside, which resulted in low marketability of peasant farms, poverty and low purchasing power of the peasants .7 The share of industrial production in the annual national product was only 30 percent8 . The industrial revolution in Romania began only in the 1980s and was slow and uneven. Large-scale mechanized industry has long coexisted with handicrafts, simple cooperation, and manufactory .9 At the beginning of the 20th century, the power of mechanical engines in England per 1 thousand inhabitants was 323, while in Romania it was no more than 30 horsepower .10

A characteristic feature of Romania at the beginning of the 20th century was that the oil, mining, forestry and food industries accounted for 70% of the total capital of large-scale industry, while the chemical industry accounted for 7.4%, the metallurgical industry for 4.3%, the construction and glass industry for 3.3%, and the textile industry for 2.9% 11 . It is not surprising that Romania, in the words of the Russian economist K. K. Greenwald, was a "tributary of foreign countries"in terms of most industrial products .12 In this regard, the structure of the Romanian foreign trade is very significant. Mainly metals, metal products, machinery and textiles were imported. 82.7% of exports accounted for agricultural products in 1910-1914. Since 1908, a significant part of exports has been oil and petroleum products13 . Leading place in the country's foreign trade on the eve of the First World War was occupied by Germany. In 1913, according to official statistics, it accounted for 23% of Romania's foreign trade, and the volume of trade between the two countries increased rapidly: in 10 years it more than tripled. Second place in Romania's foreign trade belonged to Austria-Hungary (18.6% in 1913). Trade with the latter increased by 90% from 1903 to 1913. Thus, Germany and Austria-Hungary held in their hands 41.6% of the country's foreign trade, while England, France, Belgium and Russia, combined, had the 32.78 percent14 . However, these data from the Romanian statistics need to be clarified. The fact is that a large amount of bread was delivered from Romania to Germany in transit through Belgium (Antwerp) and Holland (Rotterdam and Amsterdam). In statistics, this part of exports was attributed to Belgium and the Netherlands. Based on German statistics, Germany's share in Romania's foreign trade with-

6 "Anuarul statistic al Romaniei". Bucuresti. 1912 (hereinafter-AS), p. 15.

7 See V. N. Vinogradov. The Peasant Uprising of 1907 in Romania, Moscow, 1958, pp. 21-61.

8 E. Burns. Romania. "Essays on the agrarian question", vol. 1, issue V. M. 1925, p. 51.

9 N.N. Constantinescu, V. Axenciuc. Capitalismul monopolist in Rominia Bucuresti. 1962, p. 5.

10 N.N. Constantinescu. Criza economics din Rominia in anii 1907 - 1908. "Studii privind istoria economica a Rominiei". Vol. I, 1961, p. 31.

11 N.N. Constantinescu, V. Axenciuc. Op. cit., p. 19.

12 K. K. Greenwald. Romania (economic essay). Fri. 1917 page 36

13 AS. 1912, pp. 324, 321, 325; G.D. Cioriceanu. Op. cit., p. 39; G. Ionesco-Sisesti. L'agriculture de la Roumanie pendant la guerre. P. 1929, p. 17.

14 K. K. Greenwald. Op. ed., pp. 83-85, 87, 88.

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in 1913, the rate was 31%15 . Germany and Austria-Hungary played a particularly large role in Romanian imports (63% in 1913) .16

The importation of capital contributed to the enslavement of the country by foreign Powers. In 1916, foreign capital accounted for 80.2% of the total capital of large-scale industrial joint-stock companies, and over a third of the administrative and technical personnel of Romanian enterprises consisted of foreigners. Annually, from 40 to 50 million lei were exported abroad in the form of profits of foreign monopolies. About half of the bank's capital also belonged to foreigners .17 At the beginning of the 20th century, the country was completely financially dependent on Germany .18 However, on the eve of the First World War, the import of capital from the Entente countries increased.

The struggle of Western monopolies over Romania can be traced to the example of the oil industry, in which 2/3 of all the capital of the country's joint-stock companies was invested in 1916. Until 1900, most of its oil industry was owned by the British, but at the beginning of the twentieth century, German capital came out on top. However, in the future, the role of England is growing again. In 1907, the British Shell Trust began to cooperate with the Dutch Royal Dutch Trust, which in 1910 created the Astra Romina Society in Romania. By 1914, Anglo-Dutch investment in Romania's oil industry was almost twice as large as that of Germany. In addition, a new powerful competitor entered the arena of the struggle for Romanian oil - the American Standard Oil Trust, which founded the Romyno-Americana society. In 1914, American capital accounted for only 6% of investments in the Romanian oil industry, but it accounted for 31.4% of oil production .19

Direct investments of various countries in the Romanian economy (industry and banks) in 1914 amounted to: Germany-200, England - 128, Holland - 100, France - 90, Austria-Hungary - 80, Belgium - 53 million lei 20 . Thus, Germany and Austria - Hungary invested 280 million lei in the Romanian economy, while England, France and Belgium invested 271 million lei. If we take into account that Dutch capital (invested exclusively in the oil industry) If he collaborated with the English one in the framework of the Astra Romyna society, then the advantage is on the side of the Entente. In addition, American capital (25 million lei in 1914) was also active in the oil industry, and it also fought against the German monopolies.

One of the methods of enslaving Romania with foreign capital was government loans. By April 1, 1914, the national debt of the country was 1.8 billion lei. About 90% of this amount was accounted for by external debt. Loans were made mainly in Germany (primarily with the participation of German financial groups such as Discounto Gesellschaft and Solomon Bleichroeder), and in 1914 it remained the main lender to the Romanian government: it accounted for 47% of Romania's public loans, while France, England, and the United States were the main creditors of the Romanian government. Belgium - 39 percent 21 .

15 Author's calculations.

16 K. K. Greenwald. Op. ed., p. 85.

17 V.G. Axenciuc. Les monopoles dans l'industrie de la Roumanie. "Revue d'histoire roumaine". T. IV, No. 1, 1965, p. 55; see also N. N. Constantinesc. and, V. Axenciuc. Op. cit., p. 214; G. D. Cioriceanu. Op. cit., p. 368, 426; K. K. Greenwald. Op. ed., p. 37.

18 See V. I. Lenin, PSS. Vol. 27, p. 413.

19 "Der deutsche Militarismus und Rumanien". Bukarest, 1963, S. 19; N. N. Constantinescu, V. Axenciuc. Op. cit., pp. 211-213. See also A. A. Fursenko. Oil trusts and world politics. 1880s - 1918. Moscow-L. 1965, p. 305.

20 G.D. Cioriceanu. Op. cit., pp. 402 - 416.

21 Ibid., pp. 420,421.

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Thus, on the eve of the First World War, the positions of the Entente and the Triple Alliance in Romania's foreign trade, industry and finance were roughly equal, and in the field of foreign trade, especially imports, the share of Germany and Austria - Hungary increased, but at the same time the Entente was successful in importing capital. The period 1907-1914. it was a turning point in this regard. In 1914, the total amount of Austro-German capital imported into Romania was, according to our calculations, 1,130 million lei, and the entente capital (including the capitals of Belgium, Holland, and the United States) - 1,102 million lei, and the situation continued to change not in favor of Germany. The penetration of the capital of the Entente countries into Romania contributed to its foreign policy reorientation .22 As long as German-Austrian capital dominated Romania, it also exerted a significant influence on its politics. In November 1908, a Russian military agent in Romania, M. I. Zankevich, reported to the Main Directorate of the General Staff that all the most prominent political figures in the country, "with a few exceptions, are financially interested in preserving the real relations of the Romanian government with the Habsburg monarchy." They, according to Zankevich, "are listed as members of administrative councils or lawyers of numerous Austrian credit institutions in the country, and receive large handouts in this way... reaching 60-80 thousand francs a year " 23 .

These politicians undoubtedly rendered their masters not only commercial, but also political services.

In one way or another , a significant part of the Romanian commercial and even part of the petty bourgeoisie, 24 who acted as intermediaries between foreign firms and the local market, was connected with Austro-German capital. Many representatives of banking capital also focused on Germany and Austria-Hungary, who also played an intermediary role in the robbery of their country by foreign capital. This role was played, in particular, by the National Bank, which has been closely associated with German and Austrian banks since its foundation (1880). The leading position in it was occupied by the Bratianu family, who played a prominent role in the liberal party .25 The pro-German orientation was followed by many large landlords, for whom Germany was the main market for grain, while Russia was a dangerous competitor in the field of grain exports. The largest landowner was King Carol I (a German prince by birth), to whom in 1884 the Parliament, at the suggestion of the then Prime Minister I. Bratianu Sr., presented a gift of 12 latifundia with a total area of over 130 thousand hectares .26 But Karol was not only a landowner, but also a financier, merchant, and industrialist .27 It was " ko-

22 The role of entente capital imports in Romania's foreign policy reorientation was first noted by I. Gheorghiu (see " Russian-Romanian Relations during the First World War. 1914-February 1917". (Cand. diss), Moscow 1953, pp. 91, 286, etc.) Gheorghiu considers this factor decisive, but believes that it manifested itself only during the World War. Further research has shown that even in the first decade of the twentieth century, Anglo-French capital gained important positions in Romania, and this contributed to Romania's rapprochement with the Entente. Cu privire la politica Rominiei faa de Rusia in anii 1879 - 1893. "Analele Universitatii C. I. Parhon. (Bucureti). Seria stiinte sociale. Istorie". N 16. Anul IX. 1960, p. 127; N. N.Constan-tinesci. V. Axenciuc. Op. cit, p. 252. However, Romania's departure from the Triple Alliance cannot be explained solely by external factors.

23 TSGVIA, f. 2000, op. N 1, ed. hr. 800, l. 35. See also I. Ursu. Op. cit, p. 54.

24 "Rumanien. Wirtschaftliche Verhaltnisse 1909". Wien. Juli 1910, S. 81; N. Basilesco. Op. cit., t. II, p. 263.

25 N. Basilesco. Op. cit., t. II, pp. 263, 267.

26 P. Lindenberg. Konig Karl von Rumanien. Bd. I. B. 1923, S. 558.

27 See " Un Allemand. Les dessous de la politique en Orient". P. 1916, p. 140.

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a crowned agent of German imperialism, " 28 who defended German interests not only for sentimental reasons, but also for material ones. Financially, he was dependent on German capital. In particular, Karol was interested in the affairs of the German banks "Discount Gesellschaft" and "Deutsche Bank" and the oil company "Steaua Romyna" 29 . The King exerted a very great influence on the country's foreign policy. He skilfully maneuvered between political parties and groups, which was facilitated by some features of the political life of Romania at the end of the XIX-beginning of the XX century.

The Romanian bourgeois-landlord political parties were for a long time top-level in nature and differed little from each other both in their composition and in their goals and programs. It is customary to consider the conservative party as a landowner, and the liberal party as a bourgeois one. But it must be borne in mind that in Rumania the bourgeoisie and the landlords were bound together by the closest ties. As capitalism developed, more and more large landowners acquired shares in industrial and financial enterprises. At the same time, the wealthy bourgeoisie often bought estates and became landlords .30 As a result, large landowners, who were often both landlords, bankers, and industrialists, also occupied a prominent place among the oligarchy, along with representatives of banking capital and industrial circles. A similar pattern was typical for political parties: both the Liberal Party and the Conservative Party included many large landowners. The leader of the liberal party, I. Bratianu, even declared at its congress in 1913 that there were more landlords in the liberal party than in the conservative one. 31 Political parties, without a clearly defined class face, were more like a bunch of figures who were engaged not so much in politics as in intrigue .32

A brilliant and at the same time murderous description of the political order of Romania in the late 19th and early 20th centuries was given by the outstanding Romanian writer, satirist-democrat I. L. Caragiale in the article "1907 from spring to autumn": "Political parties in the European sense of the word, i.e. parties based on old or new traditions and class values." interests that follow their own principles and ideals do not exist in Romania... Administration... it consists of two large groups. One is in power and feeding; the other is starving and waiting for its turn in the opposition. When feeding people become powerless from excessive obesity, and the hungry have reached the last point of patience, ... the king... instructs the head of the opposition to form a new government, dissolve the parliament, all county, city and rural self-governments, organize parliamentary elections again, and re-select all local self-government bodies, which, naturally, according to good customs, will include mainly supporters of the new government... This creates an oligarchy that rules Romania... Divided into two gangs, ostentatiously called "historical parties" - the liberals and the conservatives... "which surpass in cruelty and greed the savage hordes of the barbarian invasion, this oligarchy legislates, administers, tramples today the laws that it issued yesterday, and tomorrow rejects the laws that it issued today." 33

28 T. Bugnariu, L. Baniai. The betrayal of Karol I and Karol II of Hohenzollern towards Transylvania on the eve of the First and Second World Wars. Journal of Social Sciences, vol. III. Bucharest, 1954, p. 46.

29 A. A. Fursenko. Op. ed., p. 214; G. Ravash. Op. ed., p. 34.

30 I. Georgiou. Op. ed., pp. 32-33.

31 N. Kopoyu. The labor movement in Romania on the eve of the First World War (1910-1914). (Cand. diss), L. 1957, p. 12.

32 A. A. Fursenko. Op. ed., p. 287.

33 I. L. Karadzhale. Izbrannoe [Selected works], Moscow, 1953, pp. 304-308.

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Such a system allowed the king to exert a huge influence on the country's politics. According to the bourgeois historian I. Ursu, " the head of state gave power to the party chief, who appointed his personal supporters as ministers, who could not afford the luxury of having a different opinion than that shared by the head of state. Ministers ushered their supporters into parliament, and the whole constitutional life became a travesty." The Constitution became a screen behind which the regime of personal power was hidden. "Politics was directed by people who were guided not by principles, but by personal interests." 34 It was under these conditions that the signing of a secret treaty of alliance with Austria-Hungary and Germany in 1883 became possible, which was of considerable importance for determining the fate of the country, but was nevertheless hidden not only from the public and parliament, but also from many political leaders and even ministers. Recognition of this treaty was one of the conditions that the king imposed on candidates for prime minister, and they, regardless of their party affiliation, invariably accepted it.

However, British, French, and American capital penetrated into Rumania and in turn established ties with a part of the local bourgeoisie and landlords, as well as with corrupt politicians, sometimes "buying" them out of the Germans and Austrians. Thus, one of the leaders of the conservatives, T. Ionescu, was a member of the administrative boards of two Austro-Hungarian joint-stock companies and two large banks-Banca de Credita Romin (with Austrian capital) and Marmaros Blank (Romanian with foreign capital). But in 1905, he was "bought" by Rockefeller and became a legal adviser to the Romano-Americana Society .35 Another Conservative party leader, G. Cantacuzino, was associated with British monopolies and was a member of the administrative board of the Astra Romyna society, which was controlled by the Anglo-Dutch oil trust Royal Dutch Shell. A significant part of the landlords, dissatisfied with the customs policy of Austria-Hungary and Germany, also focused on the Entente .36 As a result, by the beginning of the First World War, "among the political leaders of the bourgeoisie and the landlords in Romania, both fighting camps had their supporters."37 The penetration of entente capital into the country weakened its dependence on Germany and Austria-Hungary and created an economic basis for a possible departure from the Triple Alliance.

However, Romania's policy was influenced not only by external, but also by internal factors. One of these factors was the aggravation of class contradictions, which was facilitated by the Russian Revolution of 1905. In 1907, a peasant uprising broke out, which shook bourgeois-landowner society. 38 Although the uprising was drowned in blood, it greatly frightened the ruling circles - both the landlords and the bourgeoisie closely associated with them. In their public statements, the most far-sighted representatives of the ruling classes openly expressed their fears about the possibility of a new peasant uprising, this time combined with the revolutionary struggle of the proletariat.-

34 I. Ursu. Op. dt., pp. 58, 60.

35 See R. W. Seton-Watson. Histoire des roumains. P. 1937, p. 490.

36 It is significant that 60 large Romanian landowners organized the boycott of Austrian goods during the Bosnian crisis , and this was at a time when negotiations were underway with Austria-Hungary to conclude a new trade agreement and Romania was seeking benefits for its agricultural exports (CGVIA, f. 2000, op. 1, hr. 800 units, ll. 42, 54, 61).

37 "Der deutsche Militarismus und Rumanien", S. 22.

38 See V. N. Vinogradov. The Peasant Uprising of 1907 in Romania, Moscow, 1958; E. I. Spivakovsky. The rise of the revolutionary movement in Romania at the beginning of the XX century. Moscow, 1958; A. Novak. The first Russian bourgeois-democratic Revolution and the Revolutionary movement in Romania (1905-1907). Kishinev. 1966.

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quote 39 . In order to avoid this threat, the ruling classes were forced to make some concessions to the masses and to promise agrarian and other reforms .40 At the same time, the rulers of Romania sought to strengthen their position by external successes, to divert the attention of the peasantry from the solution of the agrarian question .41 Such a solution was especially desirable for conservatives, who hoped to avoid not only revolution but also reform by using the war .42

A very important role in the reorientation of Romania's foreign policy was played by the change in the balance of class forces caused by the development of capitalism. True, this development was delayed by a number of factors: the remnants of feudalism in agriculture, the narrowness of the domestic market, the lack of capital, and the dominance of foreign monopolies that plundered the country. But there was considerable natural wealth and cheap labor .43 In the second half of the 1980s, Romania took the path of trade and industrial protectionism. State aid and merciless plunder of the masses allowed large entrepreneurs to extract huge profits. The rate of surplus value was very high - at the beginning of the 20th century, it reached 192% in the large manufacturing industry (while in the United States in the same years it was 94%). The rate of profit in large-scale industry at the beginning of the twentieth century averaged about 30 percent44 . Despite the passivity of the balance of payments and the flow of money abroad, Romania's banking capital has been steadily growing. In 36 years, it has grown 16.6 times: from 13.6 million lei in 1880 to 226 million lei by 1916.4 . A significant part of the bank's capital, as well as industrial capital, was of foreign origin. Nevertheless, the importation of capital in the form of direct investments in industry and banks, as well as in the form of loans to private companies and state loans, along with measures to encourage industry implemented by the state, helped to accelerate the pace of economic development of the country. According to statistics, in the 10 years from 1900 to 1909, the total number of different firms increased by 2,663,446 . Over 14 years (1901-1915), the country's industrial production grew 2.5 times 47 .

Despite the fact that the vast majority of large-scale industrial enterprises were owned by foreign capital, the development of capitalism also contributed to the growth, albeit slowly, of national capital and the national bourgeoisie. The Romanians owned a certain part of the bank's capital. In 1913, the share of Romanian capital in large banks was approximately 44%. The Romanians owned the capital of 30 medium-sized banks. In addition, there were many small banks. In 1914, every uyezd center or major city had its own

39 See V. N. Vinogradov. Russo-Romanian relations during the First World War (1914-1916). "New and recent history of Romania", Moscow, 1963, pp. 223-224.

40 See Tr. Lungu. Consecinfele politice ale marii rascoale taranesti din 1907 asupra claselor dominante. "Studii. Revista de istorie". T. 20. 1967, N 2.

41 "History of Romania", Moscow, 1950, p. 417; A. Nicolau. Le crime de l'oligarchie roumaine. P. 1916, pp. 20 - 21.

42 A. Marghiloman. Note politice. 1897 - 1924. Vol. I. Bucure^ti. 1927, pp. 147 - 148.

43 See V. Roman. Revolujia industrials in Rominia. "Probleme economice", Bucuresti, 1964, N 5, pp. 95, 96, 101, 103.

44 "Studii privind istoria economica a Rominiei". Vol. I. Bucuresti. 1961, p. 32; N. N. Constantinscu, V. Axenciuc. Op. cit., p. 264.

45 N.N. Constantinescu, V. Axenciuc. Op. cit., p. 134.

46 AS. 1912, pp. 500 - 501.

47 AS. 1912, pp. 380 - 381; N.N. Constantinescu, V. Axenciuc. Op. cit, pp. 7, 69.

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small and medium-sized banks 48 . State savings banks had considerable capital at their disposal. The total amount of annual contributions for the period from the foundation of the State Savings Bank Administration in 1880 to the outbreak of the First World War increased by 29 times, and the capital allocated for preservation increased by 92 times. These data indicate the growth of savings primarily of the petty bourgeoisie, which made up the main part of the clientele of savings banks. The growth of national capital was also observed in industry. In large-scale industry (which enjoyed the patronage of the state), Romanian entrepreneurs in 1907 owned about 1/4 of the fixed capital .49 As for small and medium - sized enterprises (there were more than 61,000 of them in 1901-1902), they were almost exclusively owned by Romanian citizens .50 In addition, there were 4,813 trading firms in the country in 1911. In cities, there was also a significant layer of homeowners. As of April 1, 1910, there were only more than 120,000 merchants .51

National capital was mainly represented by the so-called middle strata of society. Together with the urban petty bourgeoisie, the middle strata numbered over 200,000 families .52 This" middle class " was characterized by a lack of connections with foreign capital (with the exception of small merchants who acted as agents of large foreign firms). Moreover, it was precisely this "middle" stratum that was particularly burdened by foreign domination and sought to restrict and even displace foreign capital. The struggle against the latter became particularly important for these strata due to the narrowness of the sales market, as well as government protectionism, which encouraged the development of large-scale industry, mainly owned by foreign capital, at the expense of small and medium-sized enterprises . Hence the pronounced nationalism of these groups of the population, which reached chauvinism. Since the Romanian market was dominated by Austro-German capital, local nationalism was directed mainly against Austria-Hungary and Germany. Anti-Austrian sentiments were fueled by the policy of oppression and violent magyarization carried out by the Austro-Hungarian authorities in relation to the Romanian population of Transylvania, as well as the struggle of Transylvanian Romanians (as well as other oppressed peoples of the dual monarchy) for national rights. In 1890, a society called the League of Cultural Unification of All Romanians was established in Bucharest. This society (abbreviated as the "Cultural League"), which had been active since 1907, supported the struggle of Transylvanian Romanians and increasingly set itself the goal of not only cultural, but also territorial unification of Transylvania with Romania. 54 The slogan of unification enjoyed wide popularity in the country. Such goals also served the interests of that part of the big bourgeoisie, which also fought with foreign capital (again mainly Austro-German) for the market. The Romanian bourgeoisie did not want to try to expand the internal market by means of the revolutionary elimination of the remnants of feudalism,

48 G.D. Cioriceanu. Op. cit., pp. 387, 389; N. Xenopol. La richesse de la Roumanie. Bucarest. 1916, p. 226.

49 K. K. Greenwald. Op. ed., pp. 37, 116; N. Xenopol. Op. cit., pp. 84, 225.

50 C.C. Antonescu. Die rumanische Handelspolitik von 1875 - 1910. Leipzig. 1915, S. 286 - 287.

51 AS. 1912, pp. 296, 309.

52 Calculated based on data from AS. 1912, p. 20 s.a.

53 G. D. Cioriceanu. Op. cit., p. 343; K. K. Greenwald. Op. ed., pp. 68-69.

54 See I. Burlacu, Tr. Rus. Contributii documentare privind rolul Ligii culturale in faurirea statului national unitar romin. "Revista arhivelor". Anul XI. 1968, N 2, pp. 105 - 119; "Destramarea monarhiei Austro-Ungare. 1900 - 1918". Bucuresti. 1964, p. 135.

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because it was closely connected with large-scale land ownership and was afraid of the revolutionary activity of the masses. It therefore believed, as one of its ideologues, Professor I. Ursu, stated in March 1910, that"it is a matter of life or death for us to increase our production by combining all the productive forces of our race." 55 Hence its aggressiveness, noted by V. I. Lenin in 191756 . The bourgeoisie also wanted to secure Rumania's supremacy over the entire Danube estuary and freedom of navigation on the Black Sea and in the Straits, and was not averse to seizing Bessarabia. But most of her plans were directed against Austria-Hungary, which included the south of Bukovina, the Eastern Banat, and mineral-rich Transylvania, where most of the population was Romanians. However, the bourgeoisie also sought to seize territories with non-Romanian populations, and this is one of the most convincing proofs that for the ruling circles of Romania, the slogans of "national liberation" and "national unification" were only a convenient screen covering their true goals .57 In fact, for the Romanian bourgeoisie, such a course of aggression (the alternative was the seizure of Bessarabia from Russia, which Austria-Hungary promised Romania) was both more convenient and more profitable than others. In terms of area and population, the Austro-Hungarian provinces claimed by the Romanian bourgeoisie were twice the size of Bessarabia. In addition, Transylvania and the Banat were much more industrially developed than Bessarabia, and were more tempting mining opportunities. 59

The annexation of these territories would mean the acquisition of new markets and capital for the Romanian bourgeoisie. This direction of foreign policy was facilitated by the disintegration of Austria-Hungary, the growth of the national liberation movement of the oppressed peoples, especially under the influence of the Russian Revolution of 1905-1907 , 60 and the opportunity to mobilize the masses under the slogans of national unification. In this case, the Romanian bourgeoisie also hoped to get its hands on the German and Austrian capital invested in the country's economy, to free itself from the dominance and pressure of Austro-German industry, trade and banking .61 But to implement such plans could be (as the Romanian bourgeoisie refused revolutionary path), only relying on the enemies of Germany and Austria-Hungary, that is, the Entente, especially given the geographical position of Romania, and Russia. Hence the corresponding change in the foreign policy orientation of the Romanian bourgeoisie. The support of the national bourgeoisie, which was strengthened by the acceleration of the pace of development of capitalism, tipped the scales in the diplomatic struggle for Romania in favor of the Entente. Position on-

55 L Ursu. Op. cit., p. 244.

56 See V. I. Lenin. PSS. Vol. 30, p. 337.

57 См. N.N. Constantinescu, V. Axenciuc. Op. cit., p. 257.

58 L. Cialdea. Op. cit., p. 246.

59 See data on the share of these territories in Romanian industry after the First World War, when Transylvania, Banat and Bessarabia were incorporated into Romania; "Studii privind istoria economica a Romtniei". Vol. I, p. 141; F. Blascovics. Wirtschaftliche und linanzielle Lage Rumaniens. Stuttgart, 1927, p. 7; see also L. Vladimirov. War and the Balkans, St. Petersburg, 1918, p. 83; " A Strategic Sketch of the War of 1914-1918. The Romanian Front, Moscow, 1922, p. 8.

60 " Destramarea monarhiei Austro-Ungare...", pp. 123-136; T. M. Islamov. Political struggle in Hungary at the beginning of the XX century. Moscow, 1959, pp. 264-266; Yu. A. Pisarev. Liberation Movement of the Yugoslavian peoples of Austria-Hungary. 1905-1914 Moscow, 1962.

61 "Strategic sketch of the War of 1914-1918", p. 8; I. Ursu. Op. cit., p. 61; N. Basilesco. Op. cit., t. II, pp. 264-265 s. a.; M. Bibiri-Sturia. Op. cit., pp. 3, 5. 43 s. a.

page 103

In the context of the growth of the revolutionary movement of the proletariat and peasantry, the role of the national bourgeoisie became particularly important.

The growing influence and political activity of the national bourgeoisie also led to some changes in the physiognomy of political parties - changes that began again on the eve of the First World War. Since its formation, the Liberal Party has still been "more bourgeois" than the Conservative one. At the beginning of the 20th century, the influence of banking capital significantly increased in it, the interests of which were expressed by the" second generation " of the Bratianu family - the brothers Ion, Vintila and Dinu (Constantin). The eldest of them became the leader of the party from the beginning of 1909. At the same time, the party absorbed significant strata of the urban and rural middle and petty bourgeoisie. The ideologue of liberal - bourgeois narodism, K. K., joined the liberals. Stere with your supporters. The liberal party was also joined by traitors to the labor movement, renegades of social democracy, led by V. Morzun (in 1914, he became Minister of the Interior in the government of I. Bratianu). If the Conservative party was in decline at the beginning of the twentieth century, the liberal party, on the contrary, has strengthened organizationally and strengthened its influence. However, by strengthening their ties with the middle and small bourgeoisie, the liberals were forced to take into account their aspirations to a greater extent than before, including in the field of foreign policy. It is not surprising that the liberal party was more sensitive than the conservative party to changes in the socio-economic and political situation in Romania at the beginning of the 20th century, to the aggravation of contradictions between Romanian capital and foreign capital, especially Austro - German. Therefore, despite the long-standing ties (through the National Bank and other financial, commercial and industrial enterprises) with Austro-German capital, anti-Austrian and anti-anti-German sentiments were increasingly growing in the liberal party on the eve of the First World War.

The Conservative Party presented a complex and colorful picture. For a long time, the core of this party was made up of Latifundists who adhered to semi-feudal methods of exploiting the peasantry. At the end of the XIX century. a group of so-called Young Conservatives, or Junimists (named after the literary society "Junimea", formed in the 60s in Iasi), who expressed the interests of bourgeois landowners who were oriented towards Germany, began to gain more and more influence. At the beginning of the twentieth century, a bourgeois wing was also strengthened in the Conservative party, led by Take Ionescu, a native of the petty bourgeoisie, who made a parliamentary career first in the ranks of liberals, and since 1891-conservatives, who offered him a ministerial post. In 1908, Ionescu and his supporters left the Conservative Party and formed a new party, the Conservative Democratic Party .62 This party conducted demagogic agitation against "historical parties" 63 . The demagoguery was successful, and the new party quickly gained popularity among voters, especially from the middle and petty bourgeoisie .64 The desire to rely on these circles undoubtedly influenced the foreign policy orientation of the "takists", which became more and more antantophilic. Ionescu himself became, in the King's words, Rockefeller's tool, "the man of the Americans." 65 The success of the "takists", in turn, forced the liberals to redouble their efforts to attract voters to their side. 66 By acquiring a mass base, both of these parties will be able to-

62 C. Xeni. Take Ionescu. 1858 - 1922. Bucuresti. 1933, p. 238.

63 "History of Romania", p. 416. See also: M. Polihroniade. Viaja politica a Romaniei sub Carol I. "Enciclopedia Romaniei". Vol. I. Bucuresti. 1938, p. 876.

64 N. Kopoyu. Op. ed., p. 15.

65 A: Marghiloman, Op. cit., p. 82 (entry of November 27, 1910).

66 See M. Polihroniade. Op. cit., p. 876.

page 104

they enjoyed greater independence in relation to the king and the landed aristocracy.

The advanced workers of Romania, the Romanian Social Democratic Party, which was re-established in early 1910, and the trade unions fought against the aggressive foreign policy of the ruling circles. However, the working class was still weak both ideologically and organizationally. Reformist elements predominated in the Social Democratic Party, while anarcho-syndicalism was strong in the trade unions .67 Romania's foreign policy was determined by various circles of landlords and bourgeoisie, and their interests increasingly did not coincide with the policy of Austria-Hungary and Germany. The growing influence of entente capital on Comprador circles and pressure from the national bourgeoisie forced the ruling circles of Romania (including Germanophiles) to gradually move away from Austria - Hungary and get closer to the Entente.

The policy of Austria-Hungary itself undoubtedly contributed to Romania's departure from the Triple Alliance. First, the Hungarian authorities refused to make any concessions to the Transylvanian Romanians, thereby depriving the Romanian ruling circles of the opportunity to maneuver in this matter. Secondly, Austria-Hungary pursued a course hostile to Serbia after 1903 and therefore sought to draw closer to Bulgaria in order to incite it against Serbia. The ruling circles of Romania saw Bulgaria as their main rival and opponent in the Balkans. Therefore, the desire of Austria-Hungary to weaken Serbia and draw closer to Bulgaria, which was especially clearly manifested during the Bosnian crisis of 1908-1909, and then the Balkan Wars of 1912-1913, could not meet with sympathy in Romania. Moreover, Austria-Hungary did not give its ally Romania full support during the conflict with Bulgaria over Southern Dobrudja. Thus, the alliance with Austria-Hungary became less and less profitable for the ruling classes of Romania. In addition, after the Balkan Wars, the national liberation movement of the oppressed peoples of the Habsburg monarchy intensified even more, the collapse of which was becoming inevitable. The Romanian rulers did not want to miss out on "their" share of the Austro-Hungarian inheritance. On the other hand, the strengthening of Romania's neighbors as a result of the Balkan wars forced its ruling circles to seek new conquests in order to establish their hegemony in the Balkans .68

All these factors accelerated and strengthened the process of reorientation of the ruling circles of Romania that had begun earlier, which led to its departure from the Triple Alliance. This was facilitated by major changes in the international arena that took place after the Russo-Japanese war of 1904-1905 and the Russian Revolution of 1905 - 1907. The weakening of tsarism and its growing dependence on England and France made tsarist Russia a less dangerous partner for the Romanian rulers than before. They could count - and not without reason - on the greater compliance of the tsarist government than before. The formation of the Entente led at the same time to a change in the balance of power in Europe not in favor of Germany and Austria-Hungary .69

Romania's withdrawal from Austria-Hungary (and eventually from Germany) was also facilitated by some contradictions within Troy itself-

67 See A. K. Moshanu. Social Democratic Movement in Romania (1910-1912). "Studies of young historians of Moldova". Chisinau. 1965.

68 "Studii. Revista de istorie", 1958, N 6, p. 9; see also R. Lindenberg. Op. cit. Bd. II. S. 290 - 291; N. N. Schebeko. Souvenirs. P. 1936, p. 148.

69 It was not without reason that Ion Bratianu, in a conversation with Grand Duke Nikolai Mikhailovich in December 1912, made it clear that " if Russia starts a war with the Austro-Germans in favorable conditions, i.e. together with France and England, then the Russians will undoubtedly have the sympathies of the majority of Romanians." "Nicholas II and the Grand Dukes (Related Letters to the Last Tsar)", Moscow, 1925, p. 83.

page 105

the state union. These contradictions became particularly acute in 1910-1912. Germany, for tactical reasons, promised Russia during the Potsdam meeting of the two emperors in 1910 not to support the expansionist policy of Austria-Hungary in the Balkans. The latter, in turn, did not support Germany during the Agadir crisis .70 Serious disagreements also arose between them on the issue of relations with Romania. While Austria-Hungary was trying to win over Bulgaria, a rival of Romania, the German government and the Kaiser regarded Bulgaria with great distrust. German State Secretary for Foreign Affairs Gottlieb von Jagow wrote to the Austro-Hungarian Foreign Minister Leopold Berchtold on March 23, 1913, that the Bulgarian people "still have faith in the tsar-liberator." The German government also pointed out the unreliability of Tsar Ferdinand and Bulgarian politicians .71 Romania seemed to be a more solid support for the German ruling circles. In addition, Romania was of particular economic importance to Germany .72 Therefore, Germany has long tried to convince Austria-Hungary that it is more profitable to bet not on Bulgaria, but on its opponents-Romania, Serbia, Greece and Turkey.

These differences were particularly pronounced at the time of the Second Balkan War. Germany (supported by Italy) Not only did it prevent Austria-Hungary from intervening in the conflict, but it also did not oppose Romania's entry into the war on the side of Bulgaria's opponents. There is no doubt that these differences contributed to Romania's withdrawal from Austria-Hungary. Obviously, the ruling Romanian circles were under the impression that Germany, if not encouraging, did not oppose Romania in its rapprochement with Serbia and Greece, and even with Russia .73 Thus, for a long time - until 1914 - Romania was able to maneuver not only between the Entente and the Triple Alliance, but also between Austria-Hungary and Germany.

Finally, Romania's withdrawal from the Triple Alliance and its rapprochement with the Entente accelerated the actions of Russian-French diplomacy, which had been particularly active in Romania since 1910. It is easy to see that all these factors emerged or increased dramatically after 1907. Under their influence, over the course of ten years (1907-1916), Romania's foreign policy evolved from a close alliance with Austria-Hungary and Germany to entering the war against them.

70 "History of Diplomacy", Vol. II, Moscow, 1963, pp. 700-701, 709; K. B. Winogradow, I. A. Pissarew. Die international Lage der Osterrekhisch-ungarischen Monarchie in den Jahren 1900 bis 1918; "Osterreich-Ungarn in der Weltpolitik 1900 - 1918". B. (1964), S. 16.

71 "Die Grosse Politik. der Europaischen Kabinette 1871 - 1914". Bd. 34/11. B. 1927, N 12937 Anm., 13012; "Osterreich-Ungarns Aussenpolitik von der Bosnischen Krise 1908 bis zum Kriegsausbruch 1914". Wien. 1930. Bd. V, NN 6065, 6082, 6127, 6172, 6275.

72 Romania accounted for almost half of all German investment in the Balkans. See H. C. Meyer. German Economic Relations with Southeastern Europe. 1870 - 1914. "The American Historical Review". Vol. LVII, N 1, 1951, p. 82.

73 F. Rosen, who until July 1912 was the German envoy in Bucharest, relates that the then State Secretary for Foreign Affairs, A. von Kiederlen-Wechter, in response to King Carol's warnings about the turn of public opinion in Romania in favor of Russia, allegedly told the Romanian envoy in Berlin that " Romania should get as close as possible to Russia, this is exactly what the German government wants, " and even transferred Rosen to another post because of the latter's disagreement with Kiederlen's position (F. Rosen. Aus einem diplomatischen Wanderleben. Bd. 11. B. 1932, S. 62). At the same time, Kiederlen criticized the policy of the Austro-Hungarian Foreign Minister Berchtold in conversations with Romanian diplomats (R. W. Seton-Watson. Op. cit., pp. 494-495; see also "Diplomatically document the namsata na Bulgaria v evropeiskata voina". Vol. 1. 1913-1915. Sophia. 1920, N 168).


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