The Characteristics of Obituary Discourse in the First World War through the Example of the Funeral and Cult of Writer-Journalist Elemér Bányai
The complexity of Writer-Journalist Elemér Bányai’s cult proves that the “peace of God” within the intellectual elite and the press was more of a myth, even though a lot of people looked at Bányai as the symbolic embodiment of this peace. The majority of civic radicals, leftist writers and the authors of the literary journal Nyugat did not accept the overly prowar interpretation of Bányai’s works, military service and death. This is substantiated by the contents of the obituaries they wrote as well as the funeral service held separately from the solemn reburial. Published in 1916, Zuboly könyve, though it also contained Ottokár Prohászka’s funeral address, featured Zsigmond Kunfi’s obituary and, apart from Prohászka’s speech, omitted any overly pro-war obituaries. Another factor that made it impossible for Bányai to represent the “peace of God” was that it was exactly at the time of his reburial that, after a nearly year-long series of military failures, the official writers, elated by the battlefield successes of the summer of 1915, launched a smear campaign against the writers and intellectuals critical of the war in the name of “national morale”. They thought it was time to settle accounts with the writers who had been trying to restore their autonomy shaken in the war, for which their growing criticism of the war was a good excuse.
On the Track of a Forgotten Army. The Results of the Operations of the Free French Naval Forces in World War II
Although Charles de Gaulle is one of the most recognized French statesmen, the history of the Free French Forces that contributed to the rise of this extraordinary character is hardly discovered even by historians. Among the various units of the organization, the Free French Naval Forces are perhaps the most neglected for different reasons. Therefore, this paper makes an attempt to fill this historiographical gap by presenting this more or less forgotten navy. The naval forces were established on 1 July 1940 and existed until 1 August 1943. During these three years, the navy of the Free France contributes to the Allied war effort and participates in the defence of convoys carrying supplies to Great Britain. With its limited staff, the fleet plays a secondary role in the Battle of the Atlantic, but its activity is very valuable from a political point of view because it contributes to the consolidation of the position of General de Gaulle’s movement and to the fact that France ends the war on the winning side of the conflict.
The Question of Military Education and Militarism in Hungary during the Dual Monarchy
In the Europe of the 19th century, and especially the second half of it, after the spread of the mass armies, one of the main goals of physical education both within and outside schools was preparation for military service, and this function (regardless of the debates of public legal nature surrounding the army) was essentially not questioned in Hungary either. Rather, the debate was about how this should be done in practice and what role should the army play in it. As a result, the paper examines the question of preliminary military training in the Dual Monarchy from the viewpoint of school and out-of-school education, discussing also the professional and social debates related to the issue. The Dual Monarchy witnessed significant changes in the military education and preliminary military training of the young. In the period following the compromise, teachers and physical instructors as well as the sport profession considered the physical instruction of the time adequate, and these groups successfully prevented the government and the army from introducing preliminary military training. On the other hand, after the turn of the century, both the schools and a majority of sport professionals became proponents of preparing the youth for military service, primarily through the youth military rifle shooting movement, which had been started by Miklós Szemere and later organized and spread by the support and active participation of the ministry of defence. As a result, the army had the opportunity to take part in the reform of physical education that started during those years, and the army’s demand for preliminary military training gained significant support. Even though educating the youth in a military spirit and providing preliminary military training for them were topics still subject to heated debates, and the profession was also divided over the issue, they can call attention to the quasi-militarization of Hungarian society at the turn of the century.
The Declaration of Jihad in the Monarchy during World War I
In the first part of the paper, the author describes the historical background to the jihad declared by the Ottoman Empire against the Entente powers during World War I. It refutes the view, which originated at the time of the war and has been widely popular ever since, that the declaration of jihad was a German “political product” and was a result of political pressure from the Germans. Putting it into a wide historical-political-social context, he makes an attempt to prove that jihad was part of the traditional means of the Ottoman Empire, which, throughout its long history, decided to declare it from time to time after thorough consideration. In the second part of the paper, the author describes the process and the reasons of declaring jihad in the Austro-Hungarian Monarchy and in Hungary. It was for historical and geopolitical reasons that the leaders of the Dual Monarchy were not happy about the declaration of jihad by Constantinople, but the Monarchy, as opposed to Germany, had a considerable Muslim population. They decided to announce the fatwa calling for jihad in Bosnia in December 1914 to ensure the stability of the Monarchy and the hinterland as well as because the so called Bosnian regiments, comprising mostly Muslim personnel, had significant military value. Then the fatwa was proclaimed before the Bosnian regiments stationed elsewhere at various places, including Hungary, in March 1915. Just like in Germany, the jihad was used by the Monarchy as well to recruit volunteers against the Triple Entente among Muslim Russian prisoners of war. It must be noted that the Dual Monarchy – as opposed to the Germans – did not spread jihad propaganda outside its borders.
Establishing a Railway Link between Austria-Hungary and the Ottoman Empire
Reshaped by the Berlin Congress and the treaty of San Stefano of 1878, which ended the Russian–Turkish war, the Balkans did not have a railway link with Europe at the time. This also meant that the railway system that had already been set up beforehand was not linked to the “Old Continent”. The Monarchy (and Hungary) used all its powers to establish a railway connection between the western part of Europe and the Balkans. First, Gyula Andrássy, the Monarchy’s minister of foreign affairs, achieved some success after lengthy negotiations: the Turkish government agreed to establish a railway link through the Monarchy (Hungary). The final breakthrough came after the Congress of Berlin in 1878, where decision was taken about the construction of further railway lines in the Balkans. After signing a contract with Hungary, the Serbian government committed itself to building a railway line from Belgrade to Nis, which was to connect also to Constantinople through Sofia. The Hungarian parliament passed law No. XLII. in 1880 that entitled the government to establish a railway line between Budapest and Zemun. They intended to link Belgrade, the gate of the Balkans, to the European network this way. It was such a significant project that the preliminary ruling procedure attracted international attention and many newspapers reported on it. Finally, railway services to Zemun started in June 1883. The first engine arrived to the Bulgarian–Serbian border from the direction of Sofia in the summer of 1888, by which time the link to Constantinople had been established.
The Hannovers, Ferdinands and the “Red Capped” Horse Artillery Units (Szolnok, 5 March 1849 – Komárom-Ószőny, 2 July 1849)
During the French Revolution and the Napoleonic wars (1792–1815), well-organized and well-managed cavalry units, which regained their previous significance while picking up new roles, played an important part on the battlefields. Even though in a few decades the infantry equipped with modern breech-loading and quick-firing guns was to bring the last golden age of cavalry to an end once and for all, in the 1840s and 1850s the latter was still a serious enemy. This was true during the 1848–1849 Hungarian war of independence, too. The imperial and royal as well as the Hungarian cavalry did not only excel in scouting and performing advance-guard tasks or pursuits, but they were also capable of deciding battles through well-organized attacks carried out by their regiments and larger units at the right time. Together with the horse artillery accompanying them, the cavalry units had a speed and striking power that could hardly be matched on the battlefields at the time. Primarily the imperial and royal heavy cavalry was noted for their sweeping assaults, but the Hungarian hussars also had notable successes. On the Hungarian side, the co-operations of the 2nd (Hannover) and 3rd (Ferdinand) hussar regiments with the 8th (later renumbered 5th) “red capped” horse artillery unit were highly successful. The paper describes the activities of these units in the battle of Szolnok of 5 March 1849 and the battle of Komárom of 2 July 1849.
The Post-1956 Career of a Contentious Country Deputy. The Activity of Emil Borai, the Administrator of the State Office of Church Affairs between 1956 and 1969
The paper gives an insight into the career path of the person who “operated” the state socialist church policy in Eger. Emil Borai worked as an administrator of church affairs for the State Office of Church Affairs (ÁEH) between 1952 and 1969. However, the surviving archival sources allow us to reconstruct mostly his post-1956 activity. Due to the characteristics of the source material, the present paper focuses on studying the period following the 1956 revolution and war of independence. Through the personal example of Emil Borai, it describes the everyday tasks, the successes and the difficulties of a country cadre fighting on the “front” of church affairs. It shows how these tasks were constantly changing according to the varying demands of Kádár’s ecclesiastical policy. When it comes to the difficulties, the revolution and war of independence is in focus as this was a traumatic experience even for the communist cadre and his colleagues. In the meantime, the paper gives an insight into how the mechanism of the restrictions and persecution targeting the Catholic church worked in the country, relying on cases the author selected and analyzes on the basis of his experiences gathered through years of research. It also makes an attempt to answer the question how the career progression and the wages of an official dealing with church affairs looked in the period, and what further allowances ÁEH provided to its employees in the country. Finally, Borai’s personality is an important factor: we describe the picture the office formed of him, which became more and more negative with the passing of time, and the more and more frequent criticism from his superiors, which gradually replaced the words of praises.