Morocco-Congo Treaty

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Cameroon before and after the Morocco-Congo Treaty:
!!!! Eastern and southern borders of Old Cameroon until November 1911
!! Border between old and new Cameroon around 1914

The Morocco-Congo Treaty , signed in Berlin on November 4, 1911 , ended the Second Morocco Crisis . In fact, it was a combination of two Franco-German agreements, the first related to Morocco (Morocco Agreement, Morocco Agreement), a second to the Congo (Congo Agreement).

The German Reich recognized by the Agreement supremacy of France over Morocco and renounced their own territorial claims in the region. In return, France ceded parts of French equatorial Africa , known as New Cameroon , to the German Empire. A smaller area in northeast Cameroon, also known as the duck bill , went to France. The area of ​​the former Old Cameroon was thereby supplemented by 275,000 square kilometers.

Reactions in Germany and France

The press and public in the German Reich reacted disappointed to the negotiated result (the territorial gains were only a fraction of what the German government under Chancellor Theobald von Bethmann Hollweg had originally aimed for) and compared the agreement with Prussia's diplomatic defeat in the Olomouc punctuation of 1850 The German Foreign Minister Alfred von Kiderlen-Waechter had initially demanded the entire French Congo (including Gabon) from the French Ambassador Jules Cambon as compensation for German claims on Morocco, or - if not the entire French Congo - then at least the right of first refusal for the Belgian Congo , which was awarded to France (1884, 1895 and 1908, respectively). France's Foreign Minister Justin de Selves refused to do this in place of the Belgian government. Kiderlen-Waechter was able to comfort the Reichstag with an additional article to the Congo Agreement, in which France undertook not to make use of its right of first refusal without prior negotiations with Germany about the redistribution of the entire Congo Basin.

In France, too, the agreement caused great dissatisfaction. The undersigned Foreign Minister Selves and finally Prime Minister Caillaux were overthrown by the Senate in January 1912, mainly at the instigation of ex-Foreign Minister Pichon , ex-Prime Minister Clemenceau and the leader of the right-wing Republicans , Léon Jenouvrier. Parliamentarians and the press were bothered by the fact that Germany had only had to give up vague rights that it shared with the other powers of the earlier Morocco agreements, while France had to give up real areas that it had long since actually owned. In contrast to the first agreement concerning Morocco, the second agreement concerning the Congo required the approval of the Senate because it included the cession of French territory. Caillaux, who was accused of having accommodated Germany too far under the pressure of German gunboat policy and with too great a negotiating rush, and of having made too many concessions in alleged secret negotiations behind Selves' back, played down the assignment as a worthless "scrap of marshland". As his successor, the new Prime Minister Poincaré campaigned with the promise of closer ties to the Entente allies Russia and Great Britain for the acceptance of the agreement, although it was not perfect, but it was concluded. The relevant hearings in the Senate began on February 5, 1912, and on February 10, the treaty was finally approved by 212 votes to 42. Jenouvrier's request immediately afterwards to have the details of the negotiations examined more closely for possible side agreements was rejected by 242 votes to 15.

Reaction of Austria-Hungary and other powers

The first agreement, concerning Morocco, required international approval. After the First Morocco Crisis , all powers interested in Morocco agreed at the Algeciras Conference in 1906 that Morocco would continue to exist and remain neutral. For the change of this status and the envisaged conversion of Morocco into a French protectorate, France needed the approval of the other signatories of the Algeciras Act. These powers used the French desire for their part to formulate their own wishes, requests, conditions and demands, the fulfillment of which they tried to combine with the question of their consent. France and Spain had already delimited their respective spheres of interest in Morocco in several treaties (1900, 1902, 1904, 1906). As a junior partner to France, Spain wanted to become a protectorate power over a piece of Morocco, Great Britain wanted negotiations over Tangier . Since Great Britain, Italy and France had already assured each other of their respective claims in North Africa in earlier agreements, Italy, to which Tripolitania had also been assured by Germany and Austria-Hungary, began to take possession of this province during the Franco-German negotiations on Morocco of the Turkish Empire. Italy expected diplomatic benevolence from France despite repeated violations of French neutrality by Italian warships ( capture of the French ships Carthage , Manouba and Tavignano , shelling of the French consulate in Beirut). Russia, on the other hand, feared that the Italo-Turkish War would lead to the partition of Turkey being too late or too short. In return for the recognition of French claims to Morocco, Vice Foreign Minister Anatoly Neratov wanted France to recognize Russian claims to "freedom of action" with regard to the Turkish Straits. However, Selves convinced Russia that it should not want Turkey to be split up prematurely in its own Russian interests, whereupon Russia approved the Morocco Agreement on November 15, 1911.

Austria-Hungary's accession to the Morocco Treaty took longer. On November 18, 1911, Foreign Minister Alois von Aehrenthal demanded French approval for the placement of Austrian and Hungarian government bonds on the Paris stock exchange for his approval. Aehrenthal and his successor Leopold Berchtold were supported by France's ambassador in Vienna, Philippe Crozier . The Austrian and Hungarian central banks should each be allowed to borrow 500 million kroner from French investors over several years with officially listed securities. Since the French government suspected that it was a question of war bonds for armaments purposes and that some French capital would thus be diverted into the German Empire, Crozier tried in return for guarantees that Austria-Hungary would be at least temporarily neutral in the event of a German attack on France. The French government recommended Aehrenthal (and Crozier) not to link the Morocco agreement and the loan issue, and on December 23, 1911 Austria-Hungary also entered the Franco-German agreement. In March 1912, Poincaré allowed his finance minister, Louis-Lucien Klotz, to approve small, non-military loans from the Hungarian and Austrian land credit institutions .

On March 30, France was finally able to establish its protectorate over Morocco through the Treaty of Fez with the Moroccan sultan, even if the Franco-Spanish negotiations that began in December 1911 (including over the Tangier question) could not be concluded until November 27, 1912 .

Web links

Individual evidence

  1. ^ Horst founder : History of the German colonies . 5th edition, Paderborn: Schöningh / UTB, 2004, p. 101, ISBN 3-506-99415-8 ( preview on Google Books )
  2. Günther Fuchs , Hans Henseke: The French Colonial Empire , page 115. Deutscher Verlag der Wissenschaften, Berlin 1987
  3. Klaus Wernecke: The will for world recognition. Foreign policy and the public in the German Empire on the eve of the First World War , Düsseldorf 1970, p. 62.
  4. a b Wladimir P. Potjomkin (Ed.): History of Diplomacy , Volume 2 (Die Diplomatie der Neuzeit, 1872-1919), page 248f. SWA-Verlag, Berlin 1948.
  5. a b Heinz Köller, Bernhard Töpfer : History of France , Part 2. S. 260. Deutscher Verlag der Wissenschaften, Berlin 1973
  6. a b c d e f Raymond Poincaré : Memoirs - The prehistory of the world war (1912-1913) , pages 15-23, 59-63, 73-76 and 155-157. Paul-Aretz-Verlag, Dresden 1928
  7. ^ Günther Fuchs , Hans Henseke: Georges Clemenceau , page 90f. German Science Publishers, Berlin 1983
  8. ^ Raymond Poincaré : Memoirs - The prehistory of the world war (1912-1913) , pages 39 and 229-233. Paul-Aretz-Verlag, Dresden 1928
  9. ^ Raymond Poincaré : Memoirs - The prehistory of the world war (1912-1913) , pages 160-180. Paul-Aretz-Verlag, Dresden 1928