Spain was powerful and dominant at the time but her enemies were numerous. France was much less so but was recovering from the weakness of the Valois Kings. Holland was stubbornly resisting Spain.
New world silver financed Spain and the Hapsburg's dreams of European dominance. Catholic and Protestant bitterly fought one another in the areas controlled by all three. The Eighty Years War (1568 - 1648) and the Thirty Years War (1618 - 1648) were both running at the time and costing Spain greatly. Fortunately for Spain she had very deep pockets. Spain had discovered a mountain of silver in South America (Potosi).
Holland was solidly Protestant and had an excellent area of swamp to defend that was fairly remote from the Spanish strength. Spain found it slow and costly going and the bloody violence of their retribution earned them few friends and many enemies.
France was under the regency of Cardinal Richelieu. He slowly centralized the government of France and eliminated the Protestant resistance. France was growing in power and eventually dominant.
Mostly the early parts of these 2 Wars went reasonably well for the Spanish but by the end in 1648 the Spanish strength was spent, France was dominating Europe and Holland had successfully maintained its existence and independence.
France had eliminated its Protestant problem but had intervened on the Protestant side in Germany to stop the Spanish. The Thirty Years War ended in a bloody stalemate. The disunity of the German states lasted until 1870.
The 2nd Defenestration of Prague. The start of the Thirty year's War.
By Johann Philipp Abelinus, Public Domain, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=208387
The Chinese Mandarins curtailed China's brief period of maritime exploration because it was expensive, yielded little and threatened social order. The European maritime powers were eager for trade.
You may want to read Victor Davis Hanson's "Carnage and Culture" -- for more on some of the fundamental cultural differences between different civilizations and how they manifest in policy, practice, and warfare.
China has essentially always been about central control and social order, primarily to ensure the stability and political unity that keeps the risk of massive flooding and invasions at bay. The maritime explorations of Zheng He in the 1430s were impressive accomplishments, but they were meant to overawe other kingdoms with the might and wealth of China. They proved expensive, yielded little in new revenue to China, and were bringing in new ideas (usually most unwelcome in Chinese history) and were disrupting social order.
The other point is that China had just spent a considerable fortune on a new internal canal system that could enhance internal trade and reduce the danger of major famines. The canal system needed a lot of sailors, and to the Mandarinate, the answer was obvious.
Europe was always politically fragmented, with every country looking for advantage and new trade opportunities. With the Turkish Empire levying extremely heavy taxes on East-West trade, Portugal in particular decided to find a new route to Asia. Merchants soon followed the mariners, yielding new products and revenues to the Portugese Crown. Their success soon meant that Spain, France, England and the Dutch -- Europe's main Atlantic nations -- soon strove to follow the Portuguese example.
The Allied Invasion of Normandy in 1944 rested on overwhelming airpower, sheltered water to unload vessels over the 'Beach', and the ability to defend the beachhead in its first days.
COSSAC (The Chief of Staff to the Supreme Allied Commander) was the entity charged with forming plans for the Allied invasion of the Mainland after the Casablanca Planning conference of January 1943. They first sat in April 1943, and almost immediately decided on Normandy as the invasion site for the 1944 Landing.
Norway and Southern France were ruled out almost immediately as being out of range or too distant for most fighter planes and tactical bombers based in Southern England. The Dieppe raid of August 1942 painfully reminded Allied planners that seizing ports and natural harbours from the sea would be very expensive, as these tended to be heavily fortified. The invasion would have to come over the beach.
As the British have always known, weather off Brittany and the French Altantic coast is always risky, and heavy seas would be extremely dangerous for landing craft and amphibious vehicles. Also, the open seas would make it too difficult to protect the invasion fleet, and would make for a longer transit time to bring more supplies and troops from Britain.
The Germans expected an Allied invasion to come to the Pas de Calais, where the English Channel is at its narrowest; also it there were more ports, and a shorter distance to Paris and the Reich itself. The Germans also never really had as good an understanding of sea conditions in the Channel as the British did.
The Normandy beaches were broad, relatively well sheltered by the Carenten Peninsula, and the Channel could be easily secured from German naval and air attack. German defences were also thinner, and the area around the beaches would be easier to defend against the inevitable German counter-attack (and so it proved on June 8th, when the 3rd Canadian Division badly mauled the 12-SS Panzer and 21st -Panzer divisions -- no further counterattacks towards the beaches were ever attempted).
The effective use of resources and geography both dictated the Allied plan.
Titles are not grabbed, they are generally conferred by a higher authority (often God). Napoleon, to my knowledge, was the only one who named himself Emperor, but was never recognised by the other crowned heads.
The issue is not so much the title. It existed well before Octavian. The issue is the power and the aura that he gathered about the title.
The term IMPERATOR was attributed to a victorious general after a battle by the raving soldiery, and was confirmed by the Senate upon the return of the troops to Rome.
The victory was celebrated in the city by a Triumph, a popular three days festivities during which the Imperator was paraded by the cheering crowd followed by his legions, his booty and the enslaved prisoners. There are all sorts of Hollywood films showing such extravaganza.
At the end of the three days the Emperor would lose the title and resume normal military duties.
L.J.Cesar, C.J. Cesar, Pompeius, Cicero, Brutus... were all Emperors before Augustus. C.J. Cesar was offered to keep the title but (confirmed by Shakespeare) he refused three times.
Augustus kept the title conferred to him after the battle of Azio (31 BC) and, returned to Rome, obtained the full powers from the Senate. The city and the Republic were in chaotic condition after Cesar's murder and the Civil War. Order was needed and Octavian was capable and willing to restore it.
Following his success in pacifying the situation, few years later (27 BC), the Senate conferred to him the Augustus appellative.
Cesar Octavian Augustus reign lasted more than 40 years. It was a period of relative peace and of cultural progress. Eventually he gave himself the right to name his successor (by adoption) and declared himself a divinity. The imperial sequence that lasted to the end of the First World War in 1918 thus begun.
The Soviet reaction to the creation of NATO in 1949 was mainly to create the Warsaw Pact in 1955,
Within a year of the end of the WW2 in Europe, the American forces that had been there had largely returned home and were falling back to peace-time levels. The British were demobilizing most of their military as fast as they could, and the rest of Western Europe was still in the process of rebuilding their small national militaries.
The Soviets, however, parked many of their Fronts (a war-time equivalent to an a Western Army/Army Group) in Hungary, Poland, Czechoslovakia, and Eastern Germany, as well as in Romanian and Bulgaria while keeping forces in eastern Austria. They also reneged on most of their wartime agreements about allowing democratic governments to resume in much of Central Europe, and were otherwise being trucculent and aggressive.
The war hadn't changed Stalin much.
The creation of NATO in 1949 as a defensive framework had several results. The Berlin Airlift succeeded in getting the Soviets to allow the other occupying powers resume their access to Berlin, but there was Soviet encouragement for the North Korea regime to invade South Korea in 1950, Some commentators argue that Stalin was testing Western resolve to defend their principles.
Stalin's death didn't eased East-West tensions that quickly and Western Germany was about to regain sovereignty and build its own Armed Forces as a NATO partner. The Soviets reacted by creating the facade of a Defensive Alliance out of the nations they occupied, the Warsaw Pact. In truth, the WP was really unnecessary, as the Soviets still controlled the militaries and security structures of the WP's 'Member' states.
The Berlin Wall was a seperate -- but related -- issue. There was a stream of refugees from most of the WP nations through the 1950s, but in Germany, the stream turned into an flood, to the great embarassment of the East German authorities.
The integral worth of the Warsaw Pact is best illustrated by the speed with which it fell apart once the USSR collapsed.
Turkey was created in 1923 after a war. Saudi Arabia was created in 1933. The rest gained independence after World War 2 after a number of uprisings. Overall, not very peaceful.
The map shows the area of that became Turkey as the Allies wanted it to divide it. The Turkish War of Independence created in 1923 the modern Republic of Turkey.
France and Britain and "International Control" which meant France and Britain in the name of the League of Nations gained most of the control of the area and areas to the south of the map. The area of modern Saudi Arabia was divided among a number of Arabic factions some of who recognized the Ottomans as overlords. This warring groups fought over the 1920s to unify the area. There was raiding into British controlled areas.
The second map shows the division of the area of modern Syria and Lebanon which the French got. The British got what became Iraq.
The Alawite State was dissolved by the French. The Druze revolted unsuccessfully for independence in 1924.
Mandatory Palestine in the South was British controlled in the name of the League of Nations, and had increasing conflict between Arabs and Jews.
The whole area Ottoman has many minority religious and ethnic groups, some unique in the world. There is intra-sectional violence between Islamic sects and between religions. Many Nationalist elements existed. It would be a very difficult area to control by anyone. That there is still conflict here should surprise no one
Pre-Columbian Florida was inhabited for at least 13,500 years, and most of its peoples are only known by their artifacts. The dominant group in South Florida around 1,500 AD are known as the Calusa.
Asking who lived where, especially when no written records were kept, is an awkward question without reliable answers. Humans seem to have moved into Southern Florida as early as 10-12,000 BC, but most of the Paleoindian and Archaic Indian peoples are only identifiable by the tool sets and artifacts they left.
Lacking written records, Archeologists often name peoples by the artifacts they left; these are never fully established and often remain the subject of considerable debate. Nor do we have any real evidence that, for instance, the Glades Culture of the Panhandle which lasted from 550 BCE to European contact has any direct relation to the First Nations peoples who live in the area now.
People do move around, and the centuries after European contact in the Americas brought considerable turmoil as the Old World Disease set (particularly Small Pox and the Mumps) washed again and again over the Americas in a number of different epidemics. Massive depopulation destablized existing structures, often well before the first Europeans came into view, and warfare, the pursuit of new trading opportunities and much else generated a constant flux.
However, according to the written records left from the first century of contact, the largest and most influential group in Southern Florida at the time were the Calusa, who also dominated the Ais and the Mayaimi. Their pre-Columbian cultural sites suggest the Calusa had very deep roots in the region. However, they were especially hard hit by epidemics and warfare in the 17th century and the few survivors seem to have been absorbed by the Seminoles,shortly afterwards.
There are numerous examples of mass-murder in history. What makes the Nazi mass-murder of Jews different is the systemic application of industrial organization and the priorities they gave to it.
Two useful books on the Holocaust include Martin Gilbert's , "Never Again: A History of the Holocaust" (2000); Lizzie Collingham's "The Taste of War: World War Two and the Battle for Food" (2011).
The mass murder of Europe's Jews had three phases: The first (1939-1941) was brutal, casual, and largely confined to Poland. Pre-war Nazi persecution of German Jews was bad enough, but consisted of deliberate degredation and isolation... things that had been seen before in Jewish history, and many Jews held a "This too shall pass" opinion.
The invasion of Poland was accompanied by casual homicide and improvised instances of mass shooting; often locally organized by troops (Wehrmacht or SS). In 1939-40, life was riskier for Polish educated elites and property owners. The Germans were still trying to decide what to do with 3 million Polish Jews.
Phase 2 combined the plans for the invasion of the USSR and a disturbing memo from the Reich's Food Commissioner, Herbert Backe, in early 1941. He determined that Germany's plan for food self-sufficiency, particularly when in Russia, would require the elmination of tens of millions of people. Various officials in the SS saw the opportunity to intensify the destruction of Jews -- as well as Soviet civilians and POWs.
With the invasion of the USSR, rations to Polish ghettos were cut again and the Einsatzgruppen execution squads were set loose. in the wake of the armies. By the fall of 1941, they had murdered hundreds of thousands, but found this was both inefficient and stressful. Instead -- as the Wannsee Conference of January 1942 illustrates -- a more industrial approach would be used. Six death camps were set up, all in Poland, to systemically murder millions of people, with particular focus on Europe's Jews.
By the end of 1943, almost all of the Jews in easy reach (except those of Italy and Hungary) had been eliminated, and the war in Russia had turned against Germany. Five of the death camps were closed, but Auschwitz-Birkenau remained open. Many of the Jews were still alive were being used as slave-labour, but the SS was relentless in using a combination of starvation rations and hard work to maintain a high death rate until the very end of the war.
There were two Turkish sieges of Vienna -- 1529 and 1683. The first marked the apex of Turkish expansionism in Europe; the second marked the end of Turkey's place as a major power.
Following their arrival in Europe in the 14th Century, the Turks proved to be an aggressive imperial power -- sustained both by their own martial traditions, and the impulse to domination that sometimes pops up in Islam. Following the 1453 fall of Constantinople, the Turks moved north through the Balkans. The Turks were well organized, disciplined, and more modern than Europeans give them credit for -- particularly with respect to firearms, military music, and logistical organization.
Much of Western Europe (Spain, France, and England) considered the Turks to be a remote problem. Central and Eastern Europe saw a relentless march that was hard to stem. In 1529, Suleiman the Magnificent sought to complete the conquest of Hungary, but also well knew that Vienna was the gateway from the Hungarian plains into Southern Germany, as well as being the Hapsburg Capital.
The Turks always had problems with European fortifications (as witnessed in Rhodes and Malta), and logistical difficulties compounded the problem. The 1529 siege of Vienna failed, and Sulieman had other foes to confront and his successors had less taste for conquest. In 1682, border conflicts all along the northern edge of the Polish Empire with Poles and the Hapsburgs, sparked a Turkish plan to capture Vienna again. They spent a year making careful plans and working on their logistics and Sultan Mehmet IV allowed his Grand Vizier Mustafa Pasha to begin the campaign.
However, the Europeans had undergone a military revolution in the last 150 years, with substantial improvements in weaponry, tactics, and military organization. Although the Turks reached Vienna and were on the edge of breaching the walls, Hapsburg and Polish reinforcements reached Vienna and administered a crushing defeat.
The defeat proved a clear signal that Turkish military superiority had been eclipsed. Thereafter, the Turkish control in Eastern and Central Europe ebbed away,
Bilingualism in Canada is at the core of governance in Canada, stemming from one vital root document -- the 1760 Articles of Capitulation Agreement with the capture of Montreal.
The British capture of New France did not end with the capture of Quebec City in 1759; French authorities and their remaining troops still controlled the St. Lawrence above Quebec City and the issue was still in doubt. In 1760, General Amherst launched three simultaneous offensives towards Montreal to complete the capture of New France.
In late August, with his supplies exhausted and French Canadian militia deserting in droves (to take advantage of British offers of Amnesty), Governor Vaudreuil surrendered to the inevitable, but the surrender of his authority, his armies and Montreal was concluded with the negotiation of a complex surrender document. Amherst, eager to bring 140 years of sporadic frontier warfare to an end, easily accepted terms that outlined protections for French culture, the Catholic Church and Aboriginal peoples (he was less generous towards the dignity of the defeated French Army).
The 1760 Articles of Capitulation were challenged by several parties after the war, but in 1774, the Lord Chief Justice in London ruled that the surrender document was an international treaty. Essentially, it is Canada's founding legal document.
With the protection of the French Canadian identity, it was easy... even in the late 19th Century, for French Canadians to argue in favour of bilingualism. With Quebec Nationalism reaching new heights in the 1960s, recognizing what should have always been there was an easy policy goal for Canada's government in the early 1970s... the legal framework was always there.