Diary entry of Tsar Nicholas II

June 28, 1914

Дорогой дневник:

The situation in Europe is entering an intense phase.

Not long ago Archduke Franz Ferdinand of Austria-Hungary paid a visit to Sarajevo, the capital city of Bosnia – their recent annexation, their victim.  I have a bad feeling about this, a really bad feeling.  Since these colonizers are just exactly who the Slavs want to see right now on their motherland. That Balkan area has always been a mess due to the vacuum of power left by the Ottoman Empire. Just a year ago there were the Balkan Wars, with the long unsolved Eastern Question. There are also the entangled relationships between Austria-Hungary, Germany and my divine nation – Russia. I don’t know what’s going to happen, just nothing good.

However, worst case scenario, there is going to be a war. A short war. I mean, of course, it is going to be short; all the wars in the past few decades have been short, I don’t see any reason for the next one to be an exception. Durnovo did warn me that the country is not fully prepared for another war yet, but what does that guy know! He doesn’t connect with God, and receive visions from him! I have seen great industrial and economical improvements in Russia since the turn of the century, which certainly are sufficient to cope with a short war.  Plus, we really have to prove our strength to the rest of Europe.

We don’t exactly know what those filthy Germans and Austrians are thinking, but I fear that they, especially Germany, has a greater appetite for expansion, more than just annexing the Balkans. Though Germany has no direct involvement with Bosnia or Serbia, I believe that the Germans are standing behind Austria – Hungary, as their support and power base. And they might come after me, and my holy nation. No, I won’t let that happen.

Today’s Russia is different from the Russia 10 years ago, and I have to erase that black smear of the Russo-Japanese War failure from our history. Oh god, how humiliating that was; a loss against those yellow perils! Also that the diplomatic disaster during the Bosnia Crisis when Aehrenthal played dirty and outmaneuvered Izvolski – ah, another embarrassment! I still cannot believe that our supposed friends ignored our call for an European Conference. Instead England and France supported Austria Hungary and allowed them to keep Bosnia Herzegovina! It made us look weak and ineffective to the Slavic people, as we promised to be their guardian. We have to reverse this image, and pay those Austrians back. By fighting a short war we can both succeed in our revenge against Austria Hungary, and dissolve the threat of Germany against us, diminishing their power while strengthening ours. Aha, great plan!

Also, entering a short war can also serve me domestically. First, I can use this chance to stir up patriotism, which will in turn decrease the opposition force that has been giving me endless headaches. Before the people even realize the consequences of war and go back to opposing me again, the war is will be over. And so I win. Economically, when we reach victory, we are likely to receive the Dardanelles. This will give us access to the Mediterranean Sea. This way our economy will greatly benefit, and in the long term, it will strengthen our countr. What a great deal! I do not see any reason to oppose such a great opportunity!

Well let us just hope that Archduke Franz Ferdinand and his wife would spend a lovely time in Bosnia, and not cause any troubles there. Regardless, I feel confidence in my country, and though Germany might appear as a threat to us, we can overcome them. No more humiliations, we will only prove our power.

God Bless Mother Russia!

Николай (Submitted by Kelly)

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