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Imperial rivalry

 This article is part of the
New Imperialism series.
 Rise of the New Imperialism
The breakdown of Pax Britannica
  • Britain and the New Imperialism
  • France and the New Imperialism
  • The New Imperialism in newly-industrialising countries
  • Social implications of the New Imperialism
  •  Imperialism in Asia 
     Scramble for Africa
     Imperial rivalry
     Theories of New Imperialism
    Accumulation theory
  • World Systems theory
  • The interpretations of recent scholarship
  • Inter-imperialist rivalry

    For details, see the main articles, Spanish American War, Russo-Japanese War, Tangier Crisis, and Agadir Crisis.

    The extension of European control over Africa and Asia added a further dimension to the rivalry and mutual suspicion which characterised international diplomacy in the decades preceding World War I. France's seizure of Tunisia (1881) initiated fifteen years of tension with Italy, which had hoped to take the country and which retaliated by allying with Germany and waging a decade-long tariff war.

    The most striking conflicts of the era were the Spanish-American War of 1898 and the Russo-Japanese War of 1904-05, each signalling the advent of a new imperial great power. But British policy towards the Boer republics and German actions in the Far East contributed to the dramatic policy shift which in the mid-1900s aligned hitherto isolationist Britain with first Japan in an alliance, and then with France and Russia in the looser Entente. German efforts to break the Entente resulted in a series of diplomatic crises which deepened animosities in the years preceding World War I. For details, see Tangier Crisis and Agadir Crisis.

    It may be debated whether the New imperialism itself contributed in large measure to the subsequent global conflict, except to the extent that it broadened the geographical area of military operations. Both the European divisions of the 1870s onward and the accelerated colonial drive of the period can be said to derive from the same causes: strategic conditions, aggressive competing nationalisms and the economic and political imperatives of the new mass society.

    The Anglo-French Entente

    For details, see the main article Entente Cordiale.

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