Thirty Years’ War – Wikipedia Article

History repeats itself. This is why there was an Age of Enlightenment with the understandings of Secularism. This is a lynchpin of stable societies. It is still yet to be learned by regions such as the Middle East. History heeds warnings of prolonged conflict over religious zeal and economic inequalities.


Thirty Years’ War

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Thirty Years’ War
The Hanging by Jacques Callot.jpg
Les Grandes Misères de la guerre (The Great Miseries of War) by Jacques Callot, 1632
Date 1618–1648
Location Europe (primarily present day Germany)
Result Peace of Westphalia

Protestant States and Allies

Sweden Sweden (from 1630)
 France (from 1635)
Denmark Denmark-Norway(1625–1629)
Bohemia Bohemia (1618–1620)
 United Provinces
 Electoral Palatinate(until 1623)
Coat of Arms of Brunswick-Lüneburg.svg Brunswick-Lüneburg
 England (1625–30)[2]
Hungarian Anti-Habsburg Rebels[3]
Supported by
Ottoman Empire Ottoman Empire
Roman Catholic States and Allies

Commanders and leaders
Sweden Gustavus II Adolphus 
Sweden Axel Oxenstierna

Spain Philip IV of Spain

150,000 Swedish

35,000 Danish & Norwegian
75,000 Dutch
Approx: 100–150,000 Germans
150,000 French
30–40,000 Bohemian Estates
30,000 Hungarians (Anti-Habsburg Hungarian rebels)
6,000 Transylvanians
300,000 Spanish (includes soldiers from the Spanish Netherlandsand Italy)

100–200,000 Germans
Approx: 20,000 Hungarian and Croatian cavalry[8]
Casualties and losses
8,000,000 including civilian casualties[9]
The Thirty Years’ War (1618–1648) was a series of wars principally fought in Central Europe (primarily present-day Germany), involving most of the European countries.[10] It was one of the most destructive conflicts in European history, and one of the longest continuous wars in modern history.
Initially, religion was a motivation for war as Protestant and Catholic states fought even though many of them were or had been members of the Holy Roman Empire—a situation which was not atypical of the Empire, which had become decentralized and fragmented following the death of Charlemagne (814 AD). Changing the relative balance of power within the Empire was at issue. Gradually, it developed into a more general conflict involving most of the great powers of Europe.[11] In this general phase, the war became less specifically religious and more a continuation of the Bourbon–Habsburg rivalry for European political pre-eminence, leading in turn to further warfare between France and the Habsburg powers.[12]
A major consequence of the Thirty Years’ War was the devastation of entire regions, denuded by the foraging armies (bellum se ipsum alet). Famine and disease significantly decreased the population of the German and Italian states, Bohemia and the Low Countries; most of the combatant powers were bankrupted. While the regiments within each army were not strictly mercenary, in that they were not units for hire that changed sides from battle to battle, some individual soldiers that made up the regiments were mercenaries. The problem of discipline was made more difficult by the ad hoc nature of 17th-century military financing: armies were expected to be largely self-funding by means of loot taken or tribute extorted from the settlements where they operated. This encouraged a form of lawlessness that imposed severe hardship on inhabitants of the occupied territory.
The Thirty Years’ War was ended with the treaties of Osnabrück and Münster, part of the wider Peace of Westphalia.[13] Some of the quarrels that provoked the war went unresolved for a much longer time.

Origins of the War

The Peace of Augsburg (1555), signed by Charles V, Holy Roman Emperor, confirmed the result of the 1526 Diet of Speyer, ending the war between German Lutherans and Catholics, and establishing that:[14]
  • Rulers of the 224 German states could choose the religion (Lutheranism or Catholicism) of their realms according to their consciences, and compel their subjects to follow that faith (the principle of cuius regio, eius religio).
  • Lutherans living in a prince-bishopric (a state ruled by a Catholic bishop) could continue to practice their faith.
  • Lutherans could keep the territory they had captured from the Catholic Church since the Peace of Passau in 1552.
  • Those prince-bishops who had converted to Lutheranism were required to give up their territories (the principle called reservatum ecclesiasticum).
Although the Peace of Augsburg created a temporary end to hostilities, it did not resolve the underlying religious conflict, which was made yet more complex by the spread of Calvinism throughout Germany in the years that followed.[15] This added a third major faith to the region, but its position was not recognized in any way by the Augsburg terms, to which only Catholicism and Lutheranism were parties.[16][17]
The rulers of the nations neighboring the Holy Roman Empire also contributed to the outbreak of the Thirty Years’ War:
  • Spain was interested in the German states because it held the territories of the Spanish Netherlands in the western part of the Empire and states within Italy which were connected by land through the Spanish Road. The Dutch revolted against Spanish domination during the 1560s, leading to a protracted war of independence that led to a truce only in 1609.
  • France was nearly surrounded by territory controlled by the two Habsburg states – Spain and the Holy Roman Empire (the leader of which was Ferdinand II of house Habsburg), and was eager to exert its power against the weaker German states; this dynastic concern overtook religious ones and led to Catholic France’s participation on the otherwise Protestant side of the war.
  • Sweden and Denmark were interested in gaining control over northern German states bordering the Baltic Sea.
Ferdinand I, Holy Roman Emperorand King of Bohemia. He urged the Council of Trent to approveCommunion in Both kinds for German and Bohemian Catholics.
The Holy Roman Empire was a fragmented collection of largely independent states. The position of the Holy Roman Emperor was mainly titular, but the emperors, from the House of Habsburg, also directly ruled a large portion of Imperial territory (the Archduchy of Austria and the Kingdom of Bohemia) as well as the Kingdom of Hungary. The Austrian domain was thus a major European power in its own right, ruling over some eight million subjects. The House of Habsburg, under a second King, also ruled Spain, including the Spanish Netherlands, south Italy, the Philippines and most of the Americas. The Empire also contained several regional powers, such as the Duchy of Bavaria, the Electorate of Saxony, the Margraviate of Brandenburg, the Electorate of the PalatinateLandgraviate of Hesse, the Archbishopric of Trier and the Free Imperial City of Nuremberg. A vast number of minor independent duchies, free cities, abbeys, prince-bishoprics, and petty lordships (whose authority sometimes extended to no more than a single village) rounded out the Empire. Apart from Austria and perhaps Bavaria, none of those entities were capable of national-level politics; alliances between family-related states were common, due partly to the frequent practice of splitting a lord’s inheritance among the various sons.
Religious tensions remained strong throughout the second half of the 16th century. The Peace of Augsburg began to unravel, as some converted bishops refused to give up their bishoprics, and as certain Habsburg and other Catholic rulers of the Holy Roman Empire and Spain sought to restore the power of Catholicism in the region. This was evident from the Cologne War (1583–88), a conflict initiated when the prince-archbishop of the city,Gebhard Truchsess von Waldburg, converted to Calvinism. As he was an imperial elector, this could have produced a Protestant majority in the College that elected the Holy Roman Emperor – a position that had always been held by a Catholic.
In the Cologne War, Spanish troops expelled the former prince-archbishop and replaced him with Ernst of Bavaria, a Roman Catholic. After this success, the Catholics regained peace, and the principle of cuius regio, eius religio began to be exerted more strictly in Bavaria, Würzburg and other states. This forced Lutheran residents to choose between conversion or exile. Lutherans also witnessed the defection of the lords of the Palatinate (1560), Nassau (1578), Hesse-Kassel (1603) and Brandenburg (1613) to the new Calvinist faith. Thus, at the beginning of the 17th century, the Rhine lands and those south to the Danube were largely Catholic, while Lutherans predominated in the north, and Calvinists dominated in certain other areas, such as west-central Germany, Switzerland and the Netherlands. However, minorities of each creed existed almost everywhere. In some lordships and cities, the number of Calvinists, Catholics, and Lutherans were approximately equal.
Much to the consternation of their Spanish ruling cousins, the Habsburg emperors who followed Charles V (especially Ferdinand I and Maximilian II, but also Rudolf II, and his successor Matthias) were content for the princes of the Empire to choose their own religious policies. These rulers avoided religious wars within the empire by allowing the different Christian faiths to spread without coercion. This angered those who sought religious uniformity.[18] Meanwhile, Sweden and Denmark, both Lutheran kingdoms, sought to assist the Protestant cause in the Empire, and wanted to gain political and economic influence there as well.
Religious tensions broke into violence in the German free city of Donauwörth in 1606. There, the Lutheran majority barred the Catholic residents of the Swabian town from holding an annual Markus procession, which provoked a riot. This prompted foreign intervention by Duke Maximilian of Bavaria (1573–1651) on behalf of the Catholics. After the violence ceased, Calvinists in Germany (who remained a minority) felt the most threatened. They banded together and formed the League of Evangelical Union in 1608, under the leadership of the Elector Palatine Frederick IV (1583–1610), (whose son, Frederick V, married Elizabeth Stuart, the daughter of James I of England).[19] The establishment of the League prompted the Catholics into banding together to form the Catholic League in 1609, under the leadership of Duke Maximilian.
Tensions escalated further in 1609, with the War of the Jülich succession, which began when John William, Duke of Jülich-Cleves-Berg, the ruler of the strategically important United Duchies of Jülich-Cleves-Berg, died childless.[20] There were two rival claimants to the duchy. The first was Duchess Anna of Prussia, daughter of Duke John William’s eldest sister, Marie Eleonore of Cleves. Anna was married to John Sigismund, Elector of Brandenburg. The second was Wolfgang William, Count Palatine of Neuburg, who was the son of Duke John William’s second eldest sister, Anna of Cleves. Duchess Anna of Prussia claimed Jülich-Cleves-Berg as the heir to the senior line, while Wolfgang William, Count Palatine of Neuburg claimed Jülich-Cleves-Berg as Duke John William’s eldest male heir. Both claimants were Protestants. In 1610, to prevent war between the rival claimants, the forces of Rudolf II, Holy Roman Emperor occupied Jülich-Cleves-Berg until the dispute was decided by the Aulic Council (Reichshofrat). However, several Protestant princes feared the Emperor, a devout Catholic, intended to keep Jülich-Cleves-Berg for himself to prevent the United Duchies falling into Protestant hands.[20] Representatives of Henry IV of France and the Dutch Republic gathered forces to invade Jülich-Cleves-Berg, but these plans were cut short by the assassination of Henry IV by the Catholic fanatic François Ravaillac.[21] Hoping to gain an advantage in the dispute, Wolfgang William converted to Catholicism; John Sigismund, on the other hand, converted to Calvinism (although Anna of Prussia stayed Lutheran).[20] The dispute was settled in 1614 with the Treaty of Xanten, by which the United Duchies were dismantled: Jülich and Berg were awarded to Wolfgang William, while John Sigismund gained ClevesMark, and Ravensberg.[20]
The Spanish Fury at Maastricht in 1579.
The background of the Dutch Revolt is also necessary to understanding the events leading up to the Thirty Years’ War. It was widely known that the Twelve Years’ Truce was set to expire in 1621, and throughout Europe it was recognized that at that time, Spain would attempt to reconquer the Dutch Republic. At that time, forces under Ambrogio Spinola, 1st Marquis of the Balbases, the Genoese commander of the Spanish army, would be able to pass through friendly territories to reach the Dutch Republic; the only hostile state that stood in his way was the Electorate of the Palatinate.[22] (Spinola’s preferred route would take him through the Republic of Genoa, the Duchy of Milan, through the Val Telline, around hostile Switzerland bypassing along the north shore of Lake Constance, then through Alsace, the Archbishopric of Strasbourg, then through the Electorate of the Palatinate, and then finally through the Archbishopric of TrierJülich and Berg and on to the Dutch Republic).[22] The Palatinate thus assumed a strategic importance in European affairs out of all proportion to its size. This explains why the ProtestantJames I of England arranged for the marriage of his daughter Elizabeth Stuart to Frederick V, Elector Palatine in 1612, in spite of the social convention that a princess would only marry another royal.
By 1617, it was apparent that Matthias, Holy Roman Emperor and King of Bohemia, would die without an heir, with his lands going to his nearest male relative, his cousin Archduke Ferdinand II of Austria, heir-apparent and Crown Prince of Bohemia. With the Oñate treatyPhilip III of Spain agreed to this succession.
Ferdinand, having been educated by the Jesuits, was a staunch Catholic who wanted to impose religious uniformity on his lands. This made him highly unpopular in Protestant (primarily Hussite) Bohemia. The population’s sentiments notwithstanding, the added insult of the nobility‘s rejection of Ferdinand, who had been elected Bohemian Crown Prince in 1617, triggered the Thirty Years’ War in 1618, when his representatives were thrown out of a window and seriously injured. The so-called Defenestration of Prague provoked open revolt in Bohemia, which had powerful foreign allies. Ferdinand was upset by this calculated insult, but his intolerant policies in his own lands had left him in a weak position. The Habsburg cause in the next few years would seem to suffer unrecoverable reverses. The Protestant cause seemed to wax toward a quick overall victory.
The war can be divided into 4 major phases: The Bohemian Revolt, the Danish interventionthe Swedish intervention and the French intervention.

The Bohemian Revolt


Contemporary woodcut depicting theSecond Defenestration of Prague(1618), which marked the beginning of the Bohemian Revolt, which began the first part of the Thirty Years’ War.
Without heirs, Emperor Matthias sought to assure an orderly transition during his lifetime by having his dynastic heir (the fiercely Catholic Ferdinand of Styria, later Ferdinand II, Holy Roman Emperor) elected to the separate royal thrones of Bohemia and Hungary.[23]Some of the Protestant leaders of Bohemia feared they would be losing the religious rights granted to them by Emperor Rudolf II in his Letter of Majesty (1609). They preferred the Protestant Frederick V, elector of the Palatinate (successor of Frederick IV, the creator of the Protestant Union).[24] However, other Protestants supported the stance taken by the Catholics,[25] and in 1617, Ferdinand was duly elected by the Bohemian Estates to become the Crown Prince, and automatically upon the death of Matthias, the next King of Bohemia.
The king-elect then sent two Catholic councillors (Vilem Slavata of Chlum and Jaroslav Borzita of Martinice) as his representatives to Hradčany castle in Prague in May 1618. Ferdinand had wanted them to administer the government in his absence. On 23 May 1618, an assembly of Protestants seized them and threw them (and also secretary Philip Fabricius) out of the palace window, which was some 21 metres (69 ft) off the ground. Remarkably, although injured, they survived. This event, known as the (Second) Defenestration of Prague, started the Bohemian Revolt. Soon afterward, the Bohemian conflict spread through all of the Bohemian Crown, including BohemiaSilesiaUpper and Lower Lusatia, and Moravia. Moravia was already embroiled in a conflict between Catholics and Protestants. The religious conflict eventually spread across the whole continent of Europe, involving France, Sweden, and a number of other countries.[24]
Historical re-enactment of theBattle of White Mountain
Had the Bohemian rebellion remained a local conflict, the war could have been over in fewer than thirty months. However, the death of Emperor Matthias emboldened the rebellious Protestant leaders, who had been on the verge of a settlement. The weaknesses of both Ferdinand (now officially on the throne after the death of Emperor Matthias) and of the Bohemians themselves led to the spread of the war to western Germany. Ferdinand was compelled to call on his nephew, King Philip IV of Spain, for assistance.
The Bohemians, desperate for allies against the Emperor, applied to be admitted into the Protestant Union, which was led by their original candidate for the Bohemian throne, the Calvinist Frederick V, Elector Palatine. The Bohemians hinted Frederick would become King of Bohemia if he allowed them to join the Union and come under its protection. However, similar offers were made by other members of the Bohemian Estates to the Duke of Savoy, the Elector of Saxony, and the Prince of Transylvania. The Austrians, who seemed to have intercepted every letter leaving Prague, made these duplicities public.[26] This unraveled much of the support for the Bohemians, particularly in the court of Saxony. In spite of these issues surrounding their support, the rebellion initially favoured the Bohemians. They were joined in the revolt by much of Upper Austria, whose nobility was then chiefly Lutheran and Calvinist. Lower Austriarevolted soon after, and in 1619, Count Thurn led an army to the walls of Vienna itself.

Ottoman support

Frederick V, Elector Palatine as King of Bohemia, painted byGerrit von Honthorst in 1634, two years after the subject’s death.
In the east, the Protestant Hungarian Prince of TransylvaniaGabriel Bethlen, led a spirited campaign into Hungary with the support of the Ottoman Sultan, Osman II. Fearful of the Catholic policies of Ferdinand II, Gabriel Bethlen requested a protectorate by Osman II, so “the Ottoman Empire became the one and only ally of great-power status which the rebellious Bohemian states could muster after they had shaken off Habsburg rule and had elected Frederick V as a Protestant king”.[27] Ambassadors were exchanged, with Heinrich Bitter visitingConstantinople in January 1620, and Mehmed Aga visiting Prague in July 1620. The Ottomans offered a force of 60,000 cavalry to Frederick and plans were made for an invasion of Poland with 400,000 troops in exchange for the payment of an annual tribute to the Sultan.[28]These negotiations triggered the Polish–Ottoman War of 1620–21.[29] The Ottomans defeated the Poles, who were supporting the Habsburgs in the Thirty Years’ War, at the Battle of Cecora in September–October 1620,[30] but were not able to further intervene efficiently before the Bohemian defeat at the Battle of the White Mountain in November 1620.[31] Later Poles defeated the Ottomans at the Battle of Chocim and the war ended with status quo.[32]
The emperor, who had been preoccupied with the Uskok War, hurried to muster an army to stop the Bohemians and their allies from overwhelming his country. Count Bucquoy, the commander of the Imperial army, defeated the forces of the Protestant Union led by Count Mansfeld at the Battle of Sablat, on 10 June 1619. This cut off Count Thurn’s communications with Prague, and he was forced to abandon his siege of Vienna. The Battle of Sablat also cost the Protestants an important ally — Savoy, long an opponent of Habsburg expansion. Savoy had already sent considerable sums of money to the Protestants and even troops to garrison fortresses in the Rhineland. The capture of Mansfeld’s field chancery revealed the Savoyards’ involvement, and they were forced to bow out of the war.


Contemporary painting showing theBattle of White Mountain (1620), where imperial forces under Johan Tzerclaes, Count of Tilly won a decisive victory.
The Spanish sent an army from Brussels under Ambrosio Spinola to support the Emperor. In addition, the Spanish ambassador to Vienna, Don Íñigo Vélez de Oñate, persuaded Protestant Saxony to intervene against Bohemia in exchange for control over Lusatia. The Saxons invaded, and the Spanish army in the west prevented the Protestant Union’s forces from assisting. Oñate conspired to transfer the electoral title from the Palatinate to the Duke of Bavaria in exchange for his support and that of the Catholic League.
The Catholic League’s army (which included René Descartes in its ranks as an observer) pacified Upper Austria, while Imperial forces under Johan Tzerclaes, Count of Tilly, pacified Lower Austria. The two armies united and moved north into Bohemia. Ferdinand II decisively defeated Frederick V at the Battle of White Mountain, near Prague, on 8 November 1620. In addition to becoming Catholic, Bohemia would remain in Habsburg hands for nearly three hundred years.
This defeat led to the dissolution of the League of Evangelical Union and the loss of Frederick V’s holdings. Frederick was outlawed from the Holy Roman Empire, and his territories, the Rhenish Palatinate, were given to Catholic nobles. His title of elector of the Palatinate was given to his distant cousin, Duke Maximilian of Bavaria. Frederick, now landless, made himself a prominent exile abroad and tried to curry support for his cause in Sweden, the Netherlands and Denmark.
This was a serious blow to Protestant ambitions in the region. As the rebellion collapsed, the widespread confiscation of property and suppression of the Bohemian nobility ensured the country would return to the Catholic side after more than two centuries of Hussite and other religious dissent. The Spanish, seeking to outflank the Dutch in preparation for renewal of the Eighty Years’ War, took Frederick’s lands, the Electorate of the Palatinate. The first phase of the war in eastern Germany ended 31 December 1621, when the Prince of Transylvania and the Emperor signed the Peace of Nikolsburg, which gave Transylvania a number of territories in Royal Hungary.
Johan Tzerclaes, Count of Tilly, commander of the Bavarian and Imperial armies.
Some historians regard the period from 1621 to 1625 as a distinct portion of the Thirty Years’ War, calling it the “Palatinate phase”. With the catastrophic defeat of the Protestant army at White Mountain and the departure of the Prince of Transylvania, greater Bohemia was pacified. However, the war in the Palatinate continued: Famous mercenary leaders – such as, particularly, Count Ernst von Mansfeld[33] – helped Frederick V to defend his countries, the Upper and the Rhine Palatinate. This phase of the war consisted of much smaller battles, mostly sieges conducted by the Spanish army. Mannheim and Heidelberg fell in 1622, and Frankenthal was taken two years later, thus leaving the Palatinate in the hands of the Spanish.
The remnants of the Protestant armies, led by Count Ernst von Mansfeld and Duke Christian of Brunswick, withdrew into Dutch service. Although their arrival in the Netherlands did help to lift the siege of Bergen-op-Zoom (October 1622), the Dutch could not provide permanent shelter for them. They were paid off and sent to occupy neighboring East Frisia. Mansfeld remained in the Dutch Republic, but Christian wandered off to “assist” his kin in the Lower Saxon Circle, attracting the attentions of Count Tilly. With the news that Mansfeld would not be supporting him, Christian’s army began a steady retreat toward the safety of the Dutch border. On 6 August 1623, ten miles short of the border, Tilly’s more disciplined army caught up with them. In the ensuing Battle of Stadtlohn, Christian was decisively defeated, losing over four-fifths of his army, which had been some 15,000 strong. After this catastrophe, Frederick V, already in exile in The Hague, and under growing pressure from his father-in-law, James I, to end his involvement in the war, was forced to abandon any hope of launching further campaigns. The Protestant rebellion had been crushed.

Huguenot rebellions (1620–1628)

Following the Wars of Religion of 1562–1598, the Protestant Huguenots of France (mainly located in the southwestern provinces) had enjoyed two decades of internal peace under Henry IV, who, originally a Huguenot before converting to Catholicism, had protected Protestants through the Edict of Nantes. His successor, Louis XIII, under the regency of his Italian Catholic mother, Marie de’ Medici, was much less tolerant. The Huguenots responded to increasing persecution by arming themselves, forming independent political and military structures, establishing diplomatic contacts with foreign powers, and finally, openly revolting against the central power. The revolt became an international conflict with the involvement of England in the Anglo-French War (1627-1629). The House of Stuart in England had been involved in attempts to secure peace in Europe (through the Spanish Match), and had intervened in the war against both Spain and France. However, defeat by the French (which indirectly led to the assassination of the English leader the Duke of Buckingham), lack of funds for war, and internal conflict between Charles I and his Parliament led to cessation of English involvement in European affairs – much to the dismay of Protestant forces on the continent.[34] France remained the largest Catholic kingdom unaligned with the Habsburg powers, and would later actively wage war against Spain. The French Crown’s response to the Huguenot rebellion was not so much a representation of the typical religious polarization of the Thirty Years’ War, but rather of an attempt at achieving national hegemony by an absolutist monarchy.

Danish intervention (1625–1629)

Catholic General Albrecht von Wallenstein.
Peace following the Imperial victory at Stadtlohn (1623) proved short-lived, with conflict resuming at the initiation of Denmark. Danish involvement, referred to as the Low Saxon War or Kejserkrigen (“the Emperor’s War”),[35] began when Christian IV of Denmark, a Lutheran who also ruled as Duke of Holstein, a duchy within the Holy Roman Empire, helped the Lutheran rulers of neighbouring Lower Saxony by leading an army against the Imperial forces in 1625.[36] Denmark had feared that the recent Catholic successes threatened itssovereignty as a Protestant nation. Christian IV had also profited greatly from his policies in northern Germany. For instance, in 1621, Hamburg had been forced to accept Danish sovereignty. Christian IV had obtained for his kingdom a level of stability and wealth that was virtually unmatched elsewhere in Europe. This stability and wealth was paid for by tolls on the Oresund and also by extensive war-reparations from Sweden.[37] Denmark’s cause was aided by France which, together with England, had agreed to help subsidize the war. Christian had himself appointed war-leader of the Lower Saxon Circle and raised an army of 20,000 mercenaries and a national army 15,000 strong.
Map of the Thirty Years’ War
To fight Christian, Ferdinand II employed the military help of Albrecht von Wallenstein, a Bohemian nobleman who had made himself rich from the confiscated estates of his countrymen.[38] Wallenstein pledged his army, which numbered between 30,000 and 100,000 soldiers, to Ferdinand II in return for the right to plunder the captured territories. Christian, who knew nothing of Wallenstein’s forces when he invaded, was forced to retire before the combined forces of Wallenstein and Tilly. Christian’s poor luck continued when all of the allies he thought he had were forced aside: England was weak and internally divided, France was in the midst of a civil war, Sweden was at war with the Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth, and neither Brandenburg nor Saxony were interested in changes to the tenuous peace in eastern Germany. Wallenstein defeated Mansfeld’s army at the Battle of Dessau Bridge (1626) and Tilly defeated the Danes at theBattle of Lutter (1626).[39] Mansfeld died some months later of illness, apparently tuberculosis, in Dalmatia.
Wallenstein’s army marched north, occupying MecklenburgPomerania, and Jutland itself, but proved unable to take the Danish capital Copenhagen on the island of Zealand. Wallenstein lacked a fleet, and neither the Hanseatic ports nor thePoles would allow the building of an Imperial fleet on the Baltic coast. He then laid siege to Stralsund, the only belligerent Baltic port with sufficient facilities to build a large fleet; it soon became clear, however, that the cost of continuing the war would far outweigh any gains from conquering the rest of Denmark.[40] Wallenstein feared losing his North German gains to a Danish-Swedish alliance, while Christian IV had suffered another defeat in the Battle of Wolgast (1628); both were ready to negotiate.[41]
Negotiations concluded with the Treaty of Lübeck in 1629, which stated that Christian IV could retain control over Denmark if he would abandon his support for the Protestant German states. Thus in the following two years the Catholic powers subjugated more land. At this point the Catholic League persuaded Ferdinand II to take back the Lutheran holdings that were, according to the Peace of Augsburg, rightfully the possession of the Catholic Church. Enumerated in theEdict of Restitution (1629), these possessions included two Archbishoprics, sixteen bishoprics, and hundreds of monasteries. In the same year Gabriel Bethlen, the Calvinist Prince of Transylvania, died. Only the port of Stralsund continued to hold out against Wallenstein and the Emperor.

Swedish intervention (1630–1635)

Some within Ferdinand II’s court did not trust Wallenstein, believing that he sought to join forces with the German Princes and thus gain influence over the Emperor. Ferdinand II dismissed Wallenstein in 1630. He was later to recall him, after the Swedes, led by KingGustavus Adolphus, had successfully invaded the Holy Roman Empire and turned the tables on the Catholics.[42][43]
Like Christian IV before him, Gustavus Adolphus came to aid the German Lutherans, to forestall Catholic aggression against his homeland, and to obtain economic influence in the German states around the Baltic Sea; he was also concerned about the growing power of the Holy Roman Empire, and, like Christian IV, was heavily subsidized by Cardinal Richelieu, the Chief Minister of Louis XIII of France, and by the Dutch.[44] From 1630 to 1634, Swedish-led armies drove the Catholic forces back, regaining much of the lost Protestant territory. During his campaign he managed to conquer half of the Imperial kingdoms, making Sweden the continental leader of Protestantism until the Swedish Empire ended in 1721.
Swedish forces entered the Holy Roman Empire via the Duchy of Pomerania, which served as the Swedish bridgehead since the Treaty of Stettin (1630). After dismissing Wallenstein in 1630, Ferdinand II became dependent on the Catholic League. Gustavus Adolphus allied with France in the Treaty of Bärwalde (January 1631). France and Bavaria signed the secret Treaty of Fontainebleau (1631), but this was rendered irrelevant by Swedish attacks against Bavaria. At the Battle of Breitenfeld (1631), Gustavus Adolphus’s forces defeated the Catholic League led by Tilly.[45][46] A year later they met again in another Protestant victory, this time accompanied by the death of Tilly. The upper hand had now switched from the league to the union, led by Sweden. In 1630, Sweden had paid at least 2,368,022 daler for its army of 42,000 men. In 1632, it contributed only one-fifth of that (476,439 daler) towards the cost of an army more than three times as large (149,000 men). This was possible due to subsidies from France, and the recruitment of prisoners (most of them taken at the Battle of Breitenfeld) into the Swedish army.
Before that time Sweden waged war with Poland-Lithuania and couldn’t support the Protestant States properly. By that reason the king Gustav II enlisted support of the tsar Michael I who also supported the Habsburgs and had an intention to get back Smolensk. TheSmolensk War became a separate conflict but an integral part of Thirty Years’ confrontation.
Scottish soldiers in service of Gustavus Adolphus, 1630–31.
The majority of mercenaries recruited by Gustavus II Adolphus were German[47] but Scottish mercenaries were also common. With Tilly dead, Ferdinand II returned to the aid of Wallenstein and his large army. Wallenstein marched up to the south, threatening Gustavus Adolphus’s supply chain. Gustavus Adolphus knew that Wallenstein was waiting for the attack and was prepared, but found no other option. Wallenstein and Gustavus Adolphus clashed in the Battle of Lützen (1632), where the Swedes prevailed, but Gustavus Adolphus was killed.
Ferdinand II’s suspicion of Wallenstein resumed in 1633, when Wallenstein attempted to arbitrate the differences between the Catholic and Protestant sides. Ferdinand II may have feared that Wallenstein would switch sides, and arranged for his arrest after removing him from command. One of Wallenstein’s soldiers, Captain Devereux, killed him when he attempted to contact the Swedes in the town hall of Eger (Cheb) on 25 February 1634. The same year, the Protestant forces, lacking Gustav’s leadership, were defeated at the First Battle of Nördlingen by the Spanish-Imperial forces commanded by Cardinal-Infante Ferdinand.
The Spanish capture of Breisach by the Duke of Feria in 1633.
By the Spring of 1635, all Swedish resistance in the south of Germany had ended. After that, the Imperialist and the Protestant German sides met for negotiations, producing the Peace of Prague (1635), which entailed a delay in the enforcement of the Edict of Restitution for 40 years and allowed Protestant rulers to retain secularized bishoprics held by them in 1627. This protected the Lutheran rulers of northeastern Germany, but not those of the south and west (whose lands had been occupied by the Imperial or League armies prior to 1627).
The treaty also provided for the union of the army of the Emperor and the armies of the German states into a single army of the Holy Roman Empire (although John George I of Saxony and Maximillian I of Bavaria kept, as a practical matter, independent command of their forces, now nominally components of the “Imperial” army). Finally, German princes were forbidden from establishing alliances amongst themselves or with foreign powers, and amnesty was granted to any ruler who had taken up arms against the Emperor after the arrival of the Swedes in 1630.
This treaty failed to satisfy France, however, because of the renewed strength it granted the Habsburgs. France then entered the conflict, beginning the final period of the Thirty Years’ War. Sweden did not take part in the Peace of Prague and it continued the war together with France.
Initially after the Peace of Prague, the Swedish army under Johan Banér was pushed back by the re-inforced Imperial army up north into Germany.

French intervention (1635–1648)

The Battle of Lens, 1648.
France, although Roman Catholic, was a rival of the Holy Roman Empire and Spain. Cardinal Richelieu, the Chief Minister of King Louis XIII of France, considered the Habsburgs too powerful, since they held a number of territories on France’s eastern border, including portions of the Netherlands. Richelieu had already begun intervening indirectly in the war in January 1631, when the French diplomat Hercule de Charnacé signed the Treaty of Bärwalde with Gustavus Adolphus, by which France agreed to support the Swedes with 1,000,000livres each year in return for a Swedish promise to maintain an army in Germany against the Habsburgs. The treaty also stipulated that Sweden would not conclude a peace with the Holy Roman Emperor without first receiving France’s approval.
After the Swedish rout at Nördlingen in September 1634 and the Peace of Prague in 1635, in which the Protestant German princes sued for peace with the German emperor, Sweden’s ability to continue the war alone appeared doubtful, and Richelieu made the decision to enter into direct war against the Habsburgs. France declared war on Spain in May 1635 and the Holy Roman Empire in August 1636, opening offensives against the Habsburgs in Germany and the Low Countries. France aligned her strategy with the allied Swedes in Wismar (1636) and Hamburg (1638).
After the Peace of Prague, the Swedish army under Johan Banér was pushed back into Northern Germany by the re-inforced Imperial army. The campaign took a heavy toll on the pursuers, however, and when the two armies finally met at the Battle of Wittstock in 1636 the Swedes prevailed, reversing many of the effects of their defeat at Nördlingen.
Soldiers plundering a farm during the thirty years’ war by Sebastian Vrancx.
Emperor Ferdinand II died in 1637 and was succeeded by his son Ferdinand III, who was strongly inclined toward ending the war through negotiations.
French military efforts met with disaster, and the Spanish counter-attacked, invading French territory. The Imperial general Johann von Werth and Spanish commander Cardinal-Infante Ferdinand of Spain ravaged the French provinces of Champagne, Burgundy and Picardy, and even threatened Paris in 1636. Then the tide began to turn for the French. The Spanish army was repulsed by Bernhard of Saxe-Weimar. Bernhard’s victory in the Battle ofCompiègne pushed the Habsburg armies back towards the borders of France.[48] Then, for a time, widespread fighting ensued until 1640, with neither side gaining an advantage.
However, the war reached a climax and the tide of the war turned clearly toward the French and against Spain in 1640 starting with the siege and capture of the fort at Arras.[49] (This is the battle mentioned in Edmond Rostand‘s play, Cyrano de Bergerac [1897], as being the battle in which Rostand’s fictional character Cyrano fought.) The French conquered Arras from the Spanish following a siege that lasted from 16 June to 9 August 1640. When Arras fell, the way was opened to the French to take all of Flanders.[50] The defeat of the Spanish at Arras, and the resultant loss of Flanders, ended with the decisive defeat of the Spanish Army of Flanders in May 1643.[51] News of these French victories provided strong encouragement to separatist movements in the Spanish provinces of Catalonia andPortugal.[50] The Catalonian revolt had sprung up spontaneously in May 1640.[52] Since that time it had been the conscious goal of Cardinal Richelieu to promote a “war by diversion” against the Spanish.[53] Richelieu wanted to create difficulties for the Spanish at home which might encourage them to withdraw from the war. To fight this war by diversion Cardinal Richelieu had been supplying aid to the Catalonians.[51]
A landscape with travellers ambushed outside a small town, painted by Vrancx
In December 1640, the Portuguese rose up against Spanish rule and once again Richelieu supplied aid to the insurgents.[51] The war by diversion had its intended effect. Philip IV of Spain was reluctantly forced to divert his attention from the war in northern Europe to deal with his problems at home.[51] Indeed, even at this time, some of Philip’s advisers, including the Count of Oñate, were recommending that Philip withdraw from overseas commitments.[51] With both TrierAlsace and Lorraine all in French hands and the Dutch in charge of Limburg, the Channel and the North Sea, the “Spanish Road” connecting Habsburg Spain with the Habsburg possessions in the Netherlands and Austria was severed. Philip IV could no longer physically send reinforcements to the Low Countries.[51] On 4 December 1642, Cardinal Richelieu died. However, his policy of war by diversion continued to pay dividends to France. Spain was unable to resist the continuing drumbeat of French victories–Gravelines was lost to the French in 1644, followed by Hulst in 1645 andDunkirk in 1646.[51] To be sure the Thirty Years War would continue until the Treaty of Westphalia in 1648[54] and the war between France and Spain would continue for eleven more years until 1659, but in the end a new order on the continent was established. This new order was embodied in the Treaty of the Pyrenees in 1659 which finally ended the war between France and Spain.[55]
Meanwhile, an important act in the Thirty Years War was played out by the Swedes. After the battle of Wittstock, the Swedish army regained the initiative in the German campaign. In the Second Battle of Breitenfeld in 1642, outside Leipzig, the Swedish Field MarshalLennart Torstenson defeated an army of the Holy Roman Empire led by Archduke Leopold Wilhelm of Austria and his deputy, Prince-General Ottavio Piccolomini, Duke of Amalfi. The Imperial army suffered 20,000 casualties. In addition, the Swedish army took 5,000 prisoners and seized 46 guns, at a cost to themselves of 4,000 killed or wounded. The battle enabled Sweden to occupy Saxony and impressed on Ferdinand III the need to include Sweden, and not only France, in any peace negotiations.
The Battle of Rocroi, by Augusto Ferrer-Dalmau.
In 1643, Louis XIII died, leaving his five-year-old son Louis XIV on the throne. Mere days later, French General Louis II de Bourbon, 4th Prince de Condé, Duc d’Enghien, The Great Condé defeated the Spanish army at theBattle of Rocroi in 1643. The chief minister of Louis XIII, Cardinal Mazarin, facing the domestic crisis of the Fronde in 1645, began working to end the war.
The Swedish siege of Prague in 1648.
In 1643, Denmark made preparations to again intervene in the war, but on the Imperial side (against Sweden). The Swedish marshal Lennart Torstenson expelled Danish prince Frederick from Bremen-Verden, gaining a stronghold south of Denmark and hindering Danish participation as mediators in the peace talks in Westphalia.[56] Torstensson went on to occupy Jutland, and after the Royal Swedish Navy under Carl Gustaf Wrangel inflicted a decisive defeat on the Danish Navy in the battle of Fehmern Belt in an action of 13 October 1644 forcing them to sue for peace. With Denmark out of the war, Torstenson then pursued the Imperial army under Gallas fromJutland in Denmark down to Bohemia. At the Battle of Jankau near Prague, the Swedish army defeated the Imperial army under Gallas and could occupy Bohemian lands and threaten Prague as well as Vienna.
Europe after the Peace of Westphalia, 1648.
In 1645, Louis II de Bourbon, Prince de Condé defeated the Bavarian army in the Second Battle of Nördlingen. The last Catholic commander of note, Baron Franz von Mercy, died in the battle.[57]
On 14 March 1647 BavariaCologne, France and Sweden signed the Truce of Ulm. In 1648 the Swedes (commanded by Marshal Carl Gustaf Wrangel) and the French (led by Turenne and Condé) defeated the Imperial army at the Battle of Zusmarshausen and Lens. The Battle of Prague in 1648 became the last action of the Thirty Years’ War. The Swedish general Hans Christoff von Königsmarck, commanding Sweden’s flying column, entered the city and captured Prague Castle (where the event that triggered the war – the Defenestration of Prague – took place, 30 years before). There they captured many valuable treasures, including the Codex Gigas which is still today preserved in Stockholm. However they failed to conquer the right-bank part of Prague. These results left only the Imperial territories of Austria safely in Habsburg hands.

Peace of Westphalia

Over a four-year period, the parties (Holy Roman Emperor, France and Sweden) were actively negotiating at Osnabrück and Münster in Westphalia.[58] The end of the war was not brought about by one treaty but instead by a group of treaties such as the Treaty of Hamburg. On 15 May 1648, the Peace of Münster was signed ending the Thirty Years’ War. Over five months later, on 24 October, the Treaties of Münster and Osnabrück were signed.[58][59][60]

Casualties and disease

Marauding soldiers. Vranx, 1647,Deutsches Historisches Museum Berlin
A peasant begs for mercy in front of a burning farm.
So great was the devastation brought about by the war that estimates put the reduction of population in the German states at about 25% to 40%.[61] Some regions were affected much more than others.[62] For example, Württemberg lost three-quarters of its population during the war.[63] In the territory of Brandenburg, the losses had amounted to half, while in some areas an estimated two-thirds of the population died.[64] The male population of the German states was reduced by almost half.[65] The population of the Czech lands declined by a third due to war, disease, famine and the expulsion of Protestant Czechs.[66][67] Much of the destruction of civilian lives and property was caused by the cruelty and greed of mercenary soldiers.[68] Villages were especially easy prey to the marauding armies. Those that survived, like the small village of Drais near Mainz, would take almost a hundred years to recover. The Swedish armies alone may have destroyed up to 2,000 castles, 18,000 villages and 1,500 towns in Germany, one-third of all German towns.[69]
The war caused serious dislocations to both the economies and populations of central Europe, but may have done no more than seriously exacerbate changes that had begun earlier.[70][71]
Pestilence of several kinds raged among combatants and civilians in Germany and surrounding lands from 1618 to 1648. Many features of the war spread disease. These included troop movements, the influx of soldiers from foreign countries, and the shifting locations of battle fronts. In addition, the displacement of civilian populations and the overcrowding of refugees into cities led to both disease and famine. Information about numerous epidemics is generally found in local chronicles, such as parish registers and tax records, that are often incomplete and may be exaggerated. The chronicles do show that epidemic disease was not a condition exclusive to war time, but was present in many parts of Germany for several decades prior to 1618.[72]
When the Danish and Imperial armies clashed in Saxony and Thuringia during 1625 and 1626, disease and infection in local communities increased. Local chronicles repeatedly referred to “head disease”, “Hungarian disease”, and a “spotted” disease identified as typhus. After the Mantuan War, between France and the Habsburgs in Italy, the northern half of the Italian peninsula was in the throes of a bubonic plague epidemic (see Italian Plague of 1629–1631). During the unsuccessful siege of Nuremberg, in 1632, civilians and soldiers in both the Swedish and Imperial armies succumbed to typhus and scurvy. Two years later, as the Imperial army pursued the defeated Swedes into southwest Germany, deaths from epidemics were high along the Rhine River. Bubonic plague continued to be a factor in the war. Beginning in 1634, Dresden, Munich, and smaller German communities such as Oberammergau recorded large numbers of plague casualties. In the last decades of the war, both typhus and dysentery had become endemic in Germany.

Witch hunts

A 1627 engraving of the BambergMalefizhaus, where suspected witches were held and interrogated.
Among the great traumas abetted by the war was a major outbreak of witchcraft persecutions that followed the first phase of the conflict. This wave of witch-hunting first erupted in the territories of the Franconian Circle, but the turmoil unleashed by the war enabled thehysteria to spread quickly to other parts of Germany. Residents of areas that had been devastated not only by the conflict itself, but also by various crop failuresfamines and plagues, were quick to blame these calamities on supernatural causes and allegations of witchcraftagainst fellow citizens flourished.[73] The sheer volume of trials and executions during this time would mark the period as the peak of the European witch-hunting phenomenon.[74]
The persecutions began in the Bishopric of Würzburg, which was then under the leadership of Phillip Adolf von Ehrenberg, an ardent supporter of the Counter-Reformation, who was eager to assert Catholic authority in the territories he administered.[75] Beginning in 1626, von Ehrenberg staged numerous mass trials for witchcraft in which all levels of society, including the nobility and the clergy, found themselves targeted. By 1630 it is estimated that 219 men, women and children were burned at the stake in the city of Würzburg itself, with an additional 900 executed elsewhere in the province.[74]
Concurrent with these events, a similar large-scale witch hunt claimed 300 to 600 lives in nearby Bamberg, where the prince-bishop erected a specially designed Malefizhaus (witch house), containing a torture chamber whose walls were adorned with Bible verses, in which to interrogate the accused.[76] Meanwhile, in Upper Bavaria, 274 suspected witches were put to the torch in the Bishopric of Eichstatt in 1629 and another 50 perished in the adjacent district of Neuburg.[77]
Elsewhere, the persecutions arrived in the wake of the early Imperial military successes. The witch-hunts would expand into Baden following its reconquest by Tilly, while the defeat of Protestantism in the Palatinate opened the way for their eventual spread to the Rhineland.[74]The Rhenish electorates of Mainz and Trier would both witness mass-burnings of suspected witches during this time. In Cologne, that territory’s Prince-ArchbishopFerdinand of Bavaria, presided over a particularly brutal persecution that included the infamous trial and execution of Katharina Henot in 1627.[74]
The witch-hunts reached their height around the time of the Edict of Restitution in 1629 and enthusiasm for them declined sharply in most areas after Sweden’s entry into the war the following year. However, in Würzburg, the persecutions would continue until the death of von Ehrenberg in 1631.[74] The excesses of this period would inspire the Jesuit scholar Friedrich Spee to author his scathing condemnation of the trials, the Cautio Criminalis. This influential work would later be credited with bringing about the end of witch-burning in some areas of Germany and its gradual abolition throughout Europe.[78]

Political consequences

Central Europe at the end of the Thirty Years’ War, showing the fragmentation that resulted in decentralization.
One result of the war was the division of Germany into many territories — all of which, despite their membership in the Empire, won de facto sovereignty. This limited the power of the Holy Roman Empire and decentralized German power.
The Thirty Years’ War rearranged the European power structure. The last decade of the conflict saw clear signs of Spain weakening. While Spain was fighting in France, Portugal — which had been under personal union with Spain for 60 years — acclaimedJohn IV of Braganza as king in 1640, and the House of Braganza became the new dynasty of Portugal (see Portuguese Restoration War, for further information). Meanwhile, Spain was forced to accept the independence of the Dutch Republic in 1648, ending the Eighty Years’ War. Bourbon France challenged Habsburg Spain’s supremacy in the Franco-Spanish War (1635–59); gaining definitive ascendancy in the War of Devolution (1667–68), and the Franco-Dutch War (1672–78), under the leadership of Louis XIV.
From 1643–45, during the last years of the Thirty Years’ War, Sweden and Denmark fought the Torstenson War. The result of that conflict and the conclusion of the great European war at the Peace of Westphalia in 1648 helped establish post-war Sweden as a force in Europe.
The edicts agreed upon during the signing of the Peace of Westphalia were instrumental in laying the foundations for what are even today considered the basic tenets of the sovereign nation-state. Aside from establishing fixed territorial boundaries for many of the countries involved in the ordeal (as well as for the newer ones created afterwards), the Peace of Westphalia changed the relationship of subjects to their rulers. In earlier times, people had tended to have overlapping political and religious loyalties. Now, it was agreed that the citizenry of a respective nation were subjected first and foremost to the laws and whims of their own respective government rather than to those of other entities, be they religious or secular.
Reduction in Germany’s population as a percentage
The war also had a few more subtle consequences. The Thirty Years’ War marked the last major religious war in mainland Europe, ending the large-scale religious bloodshed accompanying the Reformation, which had begun over a century before. There were other religious conflicts in the years to come, but no great wars.[79] Also, the destruction caused by mercenary soldiers defied description (see Schwedentrunk). The war did much to end the age of mercenaries that had begun with the first Landsknechts, and ushered in the age of well-disciplined national armies.
A cavalry battle circa 1640, by Flemish painter Sebastian Vrancx
The war also had consequences abroad, as the European powers extended their fight via naval power to overseas colonies. In 1630, a Dutch fleet of 70 ships had taken the rich sugar-exporting areas of Pernambuco (Brazil) from the Portuguese but had lost everything by 1654. Fighting also took place in Africa and Asia. The destruction of the Koneswaram temple of Trincomalee in 1624 and Ketheeswaram temple accompanied an extensive campaign of destruction of five hundred Hindu shrines, the Saraswathi Mahal Library and forced conversion to Roman Catholicism in the Tamil country conducted by the Portuguese upon their conquest of the Jaffna kingdom. The country witnessed battles of the Thirty Years’ War and general hostilities of the Eighty Years’ War;Phillip II and III of Portugal and later the Dutch and English used forts built from the destroyed temples, including Fort Fredrick in Trincomalee, to fight sea battles with the Dutch, Danish, the French and English which saw the beginning of the loss of the sovereign Tamil nation-state on the island.[80][81]

Involved states (chart)

Thirty Years War involvement graph.svg
Directly against Emperor
Indirectly against Emperor
Directly for Emperor
Indirectly for emperor


Gabriel Bethlen, prince and commander of the Transylvanian armies
  • Vida y hechos de Estebanillo González, hombre de buen humor, compuesta por él mismo (Antwerp, 1646). The last of the great Spanish Golden Age picaresque novels, set against the background of the Thirty Years’ War and thought to be authored by a writer in the entourage of Ottavio Piccolomini. The main character crisscrosses Europe at war in his role as messenger, witnessing, among other events, the 1634 battle of Nordlingen.
  • Simplicius Simplicissimus (1668) by Hans Jakob Christoffel von Grimmelshausen, one of the most important German novels of the 17th century, is the comic fictional autobiography of a German peasant turned mercenary who serves under various powers during the war, based on the author’s first-hand experience. An opera adaptation by the same name was produced in the 1930s, written by Karl Amadeus Hartmann.
  • Daniel Defoe (1720). Memoirs of a Cavalier. “A Military Journal of the Wars in Germany, and the Wars in England. From the Years 1632 to 1648”.
  • Friedrich Schiller‘s Wallenstein (play) trilogy (1799) is a fictional account of the downfall of this general.
  • Alessandro Manzoni‘s I Promessi Sposi (1842) is an historical novel taking place in Italy in 1629. It treats a couple whose marriage is interrupted, among other things, by the Bubonic Plague, and other complications of 30 Years’ War.
  • Edmond Rostand‘s (1897) play Cyrano de Bergerac (act IV is set during the siege of Arras in 1640).
  • Gertrud von le Fort‘s historical novel “Die Magdeburgische Hochzeit,” a fictional account of romantic and political intrigue during the siege of Magdeburg.
  • Alfred Döblin‘s sprawling historical novel Wallenstein (1920) is set in the Thirty Years’ War and centers on the court of Holy Roman Emperor Ferdinand.
  • Bertolt Brecht‘s play Mother Courage and Her Children, an anti-war theatre piece, is set during the Thirty Years’ War.
  • Queen Christina, the 1933 film starring Greta Garbo, opens with the death of Christina’s father, King Gustavus Adolphus, at the Battle of Lützen in the Thirty Years’ War. The subsequent plot of the film is entirely set against the backdrop of the war and her determination as Queen, as depicted a decade later, to end the war and bring about peace and resolution.
  • The Last Valley (1959) by J. B. Pick. The book upon which the film version was based. Originally published in Great Britain as The Fat Valley.
  • The Last Valley (1971). A film starring Michael Caine and Omar Sharif, who discover a temporary haven from the Thirty Years’ War. Written by James Clavell, the author of Shogun.
  • Das Treffen in Telgte (1979) trans. The Meeting at Telgte (1981) by Günther Grass, set in the aftermath of the war, sets out to make implicit parallels with the postwar Germany of the late 1940s.
  • Michael Moorcock‘s novel, The War Hound and the World’s Pain (1981) has as its central character Ulrich von Bek, a mercenary who took part in the sack of Magdeburg.
  • Eric Flint‘s Ring of Fire series of novels deals with a temporally displaced American town from the early 21st century arriving in the early 1630s war torn Germany.
  • Parts of Neal Stephenson‘s Baroque Cycle are set in lands devastated by the Thirty Years’ War.
  • Magdeburg by Heather Richardson (Belfast, Lagan Press, 2009) is a fictional account of the Sack of Magdeburg and its aftermath, and treats among other things the complexity of Lutheran and Catholic relationships and loyalties amongst both soldiers and civilians.
  • In “The Hangman’s Daughter” by Oliver Pötzsch the protagonist, hangman Jakob Kuisl, and other prominent characters have served in a General Tilly’s army and participated in the massacre and sacking of the city of Magdeburg during the Thirty Years War. “The Great War” and Swedish incursion into north-central Germany are frequently referenced.
  • Hermann Löns‘ novel Der Wehrwolf is about an alliance of peasants using guerrilla tactics to fight the enemy during the Thirty Years’ War.


See also


  1. Jump up
    ^ Helmolt, Hans Ferdinand (1903). The World’s History: Western Europe to 1800. W. Heinemann. p. 573. ISBN 0-217-96566-0.
  2. Jump up
    ^ At war with Spain 1625–30 (and France 1627–29).
  3. Jump up
    ^ “into line with army of Gabriel Bethlen in 1620.” Ágnes Várkonyi: Age of the Reforms, Magyar Könyvklub publisher, 1999. ISBN 963-547-070-3
  4. Jump up
    ^ Ervin Liptai: Military history of Hungary, Zrínyi Military Publisher, 1985.ISBN 9633263379
  5. Jump up
  6. Jump up
    ^ Denmark fought Sweden and the Dutch Republic in the Torstenson War
  7. Jump up
    ^ Gabriel Bethlen‘s army numbered 5,000 Hungarian pikemen and 1,000 German mercenary, with the anti-Habsburg Hungarian rebels numbered together approx. 35,000 men. László Markó: The Great Honors of the Hungarian State (A Magyar Állam Főméltóságai), Magyar Könyvklub 2000. ISBN 963-547-085-1
  8. Jump up
    ^ László Markó: The Great Honors of the Hungarian State (A Magyar Állam Főméltóságai), Magyar Könyvklub 2000. ISBN 963-547-085-1
  9. Jump up
    ^ Davis, Norman (1996). Europe, a history. Oxford University Press. p. 568. ISBN 978-0-7126-6633-6.
  10. Jump up
  11. Jump up
    ^ “::The Thirty Years War 1621 to 1626:”. Retrieved 22 May 2008.
  12. Jump up
  13. Jump up
    ^ Peter Wilson, Europe’s Tragedy (2009), pp. 735–755
  14. Jump up
  15. Jump up
    ^ Geoffrey Parker, The Thirty Years War (Roultledge Pub.: London, 1997) pp. 17–18.
  16. Jump up
    ^ “::The Peace of Prague::”. Retrieved 24 May 2008.
  17. Jump up
  18. Jump up
    ^ “The Thirty Years War”. Pipeline. Retrieved 24 May 2008.
  19. Jump up
  20. ^ 

    Jump up to:

    a b c d C. V. Wedgwood, The Thirty Years War (Penguin, 1957, 1961), p. 48.
  21. Jump up
    ^ Pierre de l’Estoile, Journal pour le règne de Henri IV, Paris: Gallimard, p 84, 1960.
  22. ^ 

    Jump up to:

    a b C. V. Wedgwood, The Thirty Years War (Penguin, 1957, 1961), p. 50.
  23. Jump up
    ^ “The Defenestration of Prague « Criticality”. Retrieved 25 May 2008.
  24. ^ 

    Jump up to:

    a b “Bohemian Revolt-30 Years War”. Thirty Years War. Retrieved 25 May 2008.
  25. Jump up
    ^ “Wars of the Western Civilization”. Retrieved 24 May 2008.
  26. Jump up
    ^ T. Walter Wallbank, Alastair M. Taylor, Nels M. Bailkey, George F. Jewsbury, Clyde J. Lewis, Neil J. Hackett , Bruce Borland (Ed.) (1992).Civilization Past & Present Volume II. New York, N.Y: Harper Collins Publishers. pp. 15. The Development of the European State System: 1300–1650ISBN 0-673-38869-7. Retrieved 23 May 2008.
  27. Jump up
    ^ An economic and social history of the Ottoman Empire Halil İnalcık, Suraiya Faroqhi, Donald Quataert, Bruce McGowan, Sevket Pamuk, Cambridge University Press, 1997 ISBN 0-521-57455-2 p. 424–425 [1]
  28. Jump up
    ^ The winter king Brennan C. Pursell p.112-113. Google Books. Retrieved 18 May 2012.
  29. Jump up
    ^ God’s Playground: The origins to 1795 by Norman Davies p. Google Books. Retrieved 18 May 2012.
  30. Jump up
    ^ History of the Ottoman Empire and modern Turkey by Ezel Kural Shaw p.191 [2]
  31. Jump up
    ^ Halil İnalcık, p.424-425. Google Books. 28 April 1997. Retrieved 18 May 2012.
  32. Jump up
    ^ Leszek Podhorodecki: Chocim 1621, seria: Historyczne bitwy”, MON, 1988.
  33. Jump up
    ^ Concerning Mansfeld, one of the greatest military enterprisers in the early years of the war (1618–1626) see Krüssmann, Ernst von Mansfeld, (doctoral thesis, Cologne 2007) Berlin 2010.
  34. Jump up
    ^ Peltonen, p.271. Google Books. 16 December 2004. Retrieved 18 May 2012.
  35. Jump up
    ^ Lockhart, Paul Douglas (2007). Denmark, 1513–1660: the rise and decline of a Renaissance monarchyOxford University Press. p. 166. ISBN 0-19-927121-6. Retrieved 7 August 2009.
  36. Jump up
    ^ “Danish Kings · Christian 4.”. Retrieved 24 May 2008.
  37. Jump up
    ^ Wilson, Peter. “Europe’s Tragedy”. Penguin, 2009, p. 400–433
  38. Jump up
    ^ “Wallenstein Palace Gardens”. Archived from the original on 5 April 2008. Retrieved 24 May 2008.
  39. Jump up
    ^ “The Danish interval”. Retrieved 18 May 2012.
  40. Jump up
    ^ “CATHOLIC ENCYCLOPEDIA: Albrecht von Wallenstein”. Retrieved 24 May 2008.
  41. Jump up
    ^ Lockhart, Paul Douglas (2007). Denmark, 1513–1660: the rise and decline of a Renaissance monarchyOxford University Press. p. 170. ISBN 0-19-927121-6. Retrieved 5 August 2009.
  42. Jump up
  43. Jump up
    ^ “Thirty Years War”. Retrieved 25 May 2008.
  44. Jump up
    ^ “Lecture 6: Europe in the Age of Religious Wars, 1560–1715”. Retrieved 25 May 2008.
  45. Jump up
  46. Jump up
  47. Jump up
    ^ “Soldater i trettioåriga kriget”. Retrieved 18 May 2012.
  48. Jump up
    ^ Geoffrey Parker, The Thirty Years War (Routledge Press: London, 1984) p. 134.
  49. Jump up
    ^ Rhea Marsh Smith, Spain: A Modern History (University of Michigan Press: Ann Arbor, Michigan, 1965) p. 195.
  50. ^ 

    Jump up to:

    a b Rhea Marsh Smith, Spain: A Modern History, p. 195.
  51. ^ 

    Jump up to:

    a b c d e f g Geoffrey Parker, The Thirty Years War, p. 153.
  52. Jump up
    ^ Geoffrey Parker, The Thirty Years War (Routledge Press: London, 1984) p. 153.
  53. Jump up
    ^ Geoffrey Parker, The Thirty Years War, p. 137.
  54. Jump up
    ^ John A. Lynn, The Wars of Louis XIV (Longman Publishers: Harlow, England, 1999) p. 11.
  55. Jump up
    ^ John A. Lynn, The Wars of Louis XIV: 1667–1714., pp. 11–12.
  56. Jump up
    ^ Böhme, Klaus-R (2001). “Die sicherheitspolitische Lage Schwedens nach dem Westfälischen Frieden”. In Hacker, Hans-Joachim. Der Westfälische Frieden von 1648: Wende in der Geschichte des Ostseeraums(in German). Kovač. p. 35. ISBN 3-8300-0500-8.
  57. Jump up
  58. ^ 

    Jump up to:

    a b “::The Thirty Years War::”. Chris Atkinson. Retrieved 23 May 2008.
  59. Jump up
  60. Jump up
    ^ “Germany History Timeline”. Retrieved 24 May 2008.
  61. Jump up
    ^ History of Europe – Demographics“. Encyclopædia Britannica.
  62. Jump up
  63. Jump up
  64. Jump up
    ^ Prussia in the later 17th century, University of Wisconsin-Madison
  65. Jump up
    ^ Coins of the Thirty Years War, The Wonderful World of Coins, Journal of Antiques & Collectibles January Issue 2004
  66. Jump up
    ^ “The Thirty Years’ War  — Czech republic”. Archived from the original on 4 May 2008. Retrieved 24 May 2008.
  67. Jump up
    ^ “Historical/Cultural Timeline – 1600s”. College of Education, University of Houston. Retrieved 24 May 2008.
  68. Jump up
  69. Jump up
    ^ “Population”. History Learningsite. Retrieved 24 May 2008.
  70. Jump up
    ^ Germany after the Thirty Years War, Boise State University
  71. Jump up
    ^ “The Thirty Years’ War”. Retrieved 23 May 2008.
  72. Jump up
  73. Jump up
    ^ White, Matthew: The Great Big Book of Horrible Things W.W. Norton & co. New York, 2012 p.220
  74. ^ 

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    a b c d e Briggs, Robin:Witches and Neighbors: The Social and Political Context of European Witchcraft Penguin Books, New York 1996
  75. Jump up
  76. Jump up
  77. Jump up
    ^ Hugh Trevor-Roper: The Crisis of the Seventeenth Century. The European Witch-craze of the Sixteenth and Seventeenth Centuries (1967)
  78. Jump up
    ^ [Pamela Reilly, ‘Friedrich von Spee’s Belief in Witchcraft: Some Deductions from the “Cautio Criminalis”‘, The Modern Language Review, Vol. 54, No. 1. (Jan. 1959), pp. 51–55.]
  79. Jump up
    ^ “Lecture 6: Europe in the Age of Religious Wars, 1560–1715”. Retrieved 27 May 2008.
  80. Jump up
    ^ Gnanaprakasar, S. A critical history of Jaffna, pp. 153–72.
  81. Jump up
    ^ “Portuguese Colonial Period (1505–645 CE)”Rohan Titus. Retrieved 7 December 2007.

Further reading

  • Åberg, A. (1973). “The Swedish army from Lützen to Narva”. In Roberts, M. Sweden’s Age of Greatness, 1632–1718. London: St. Martin’s Press.
  • Benecke, Gerhard (1978). Germany in the Thirty Years War. London: St. Martin’s Press.
  • Bonney, Richard. The Thirty Years’ War 1618–1648 (Osprey, 2002), 96pp; focus on combat
  • Cramer, Kevin (2007). The Thirty Years’ War & German Memory in the Nineteenth Century. Lincoln: University of Nebraska. ISBN 978-0-8032-1562-7.
  • Gindely, Antonín (1884). History of the Thirty Years’ War. Putnam.
  • Gutmann, Myron P. (1988). “The Origins of the Thirty Years’ War”Journal of Interdisciplinary History 18 (4): 749–770. doi:10.2307/204823.
  • Kamen, Henry. “The Economic and Social Consequences of the Thirty Years’ War,” Past and Present (1968) 39#1 pp 44–61 in JSTOR
  • Kennedy, Paul (1988). The Rise and Fall of the Great Powers: Economic Change and Military Conflict from 1500 to 2000. New York: Harper Collins.
  • Langer, Herbert (1980). The Thirty Years’ War. Poole, England: Blandford Press.
  • Lynn, John A., The Wars of Louis XIV: 1667–1714 (Longman Publishers: Harlow, England, 1999).
  • Murdoch, Steve (2001). Scotland and the Thirty Years’ War, 1618–1648. Brill.
  • Parker, Geoffrey (1984). The Thirty Years’ War. London: Routledge and Kegan Paul.
  • Polišenský, J. V. (1954). “The Thirty Years’ War”. Past and Present 6: 31–43. doi:10.1093/past/6.1.31.
  • Polišenský, J. V. (1968). “The Thirty Years’ War and the Crises and Revolutions of Seventeenth-Century Europe”. Past and Present 39: 34–43. doi:10.1093/past/39.1.34.
  • Prinzing, Friedrich (1916). Epidemics Resulting from Wars. Oxford: Clarendon Press.
  • Rabb, Theodore K. “The Effects of the Thirty Years’ War on the German Economy,” Journal of Modern History (1962) 34#1 pp. 40–51 in JSTOR
  • Roberts, Michael (1953, 1958). Gustavus Adolphus: A History of Sweden, 1611–1632.
  • Ward, A. W. (1902). The Cambridge Modern History, vol 4: The Thirty Years War.
  • Wedgwood, C.V.; forward by Anthony Grafton, (2005). Thirty Years War. New York: The New York Review of Books, Inc. ISBN 1-59017-146-2.
  • Wilson, Peter H. (2009). Europe’s Tragedy: A History of the Thirty Years War. Allen Lane. ISBN 978-0-7139-9592-3.

Primary sources

  • Helfferich, Tryntje, ed. The Thirty Years War: A Documentary History, (Indianapolis: Hackett, 2009). 352 pages. 38 key documents including diplomatic correspondence, letters, broadsheets, treaties, poems, and trial records. excerpt and text search
  • Wilson, Peter H. ed. The Thirty Years War: A Sourcebook (2010); includes state documents, treaties, correspondence, diaries, financial records, artwork; 240pp

External links

Corporate Tax Inversion Subversion

Stakeholder's Siphoned

Stakeholder’s Siphoned

Tax Inversion is ultimately Subversive to Financial Stability and National Security. There is a very real tipping point where large portions of the population will become overburdened and uncomfortable with their situation. Powerlessness will lead to resentment; which will inevitably lead to instability and possible Revolution. Wealth inequality and political inequality is accelerating due to the dismantling of sound regulatory practices. The wealth elite, the 1% so to speak, are benefiting greatly through active manipulation of the political system. They have ensured that rules promote their agenda over the vast majority of US Citizens. Voter disenfranchisement is systemic in a society that promotes powerlessness to those without large assets. Utilizing an intentionally broken Campaign Finance system; the Elite have ensured wealth is proportionate to political power. While this power grab is ensuring their minority stranglehold; they are fleeing responsibility for the fiscal health of the United States.

The growing trend of Corporate Tax Inversion is very troubling for the US Citizenry & Stakeholders. As Sen. Elizabeth Warren & Sen. Bernie Sanders have been shouting; the game is rigged! A Corporation has a fiduciary responsibility to bring profit to its shareholders. As such, the incentive to minimize tax burdens are always present. This is not the issue. The issue is the lack of sound regulation in the US and the consequences of such actions. The macro political economy leads us to assume some very troubling trends in the United States.

Globalization and Deregulation have created an environment that has diluted the stakes and say of an average American Citizen. Conservative ideologies, led by quasi-libertarian thinking, are pervasive throughout the 3 Governmental Branches. In a time when the United States maintains record National Debt + year after year deficits, Conservative forces have demonized Revenue generation via taxation. This has led to priorities in Congress to lower taxes at all costs; mainly for those who have lobbied Congress for specific tax cuts. The wealth elite in this nation & their Corporations have lobbied to ensure that tax burdens are lowered. This has not been good enough for Corporations or the Globalized Elite. Now US Corporations are moving abroad in an attempt to avoid paying their fair share of the US Tax Burden.

Corporations have successfully destroyed Campaign Finance Regulations in favor of unregulated, non-transparent, unlimited funds to politicians. These politicians, corrupted by this wealth, are beholden to their corporate masters at this point. Citizen’s United is a prime example of how Conservative ideologies won the day; with blatant disregard for the overall outcomes of wealth inequality or political stability of the United States. Last on the list is the financial stability of our Federal and State Budgets. As Corporations and the Wealthy continue to deflect the tax burden; well paid Conservative Politicians are in the practice of claiming fiscal responsibility. They then bring out the hatchet to budgets on the most powerless constituents in the United States. Welfare and Social Safety Nets have been demonized and gutted to further ensure that inequality is propagated.

With these assumptions, it is implied that Conservatism & Libertarianism is ultimately damaging to a healthy democracy. It is destroying the foundations of Checks & Balances in the United States. It is ensuring that the rich get richer and the poor remain on the bottom; with little opportunity to ever ascend on the aggregate. The ideology of small government has allowed a culture that permits tax inversion as a legitimate practice. The end result is the decimation of government budgets and harm to the least of these of United States Society.

Definition of ‘Corporate Inversion’

Re-incorporating a company overseas in order to reduce the tax burden on income earned abroad. Corporate inversion as a strategy is used by companies that receive a significant portion of their income from foreign sources, since that income is taxed both abroad and in the country of incorporation. Companies undertaking this strategy are likely to select a country that has lower tax rates and less stringent corporate governance requirements.

Investopedia explains ‘Corporate Inversion’

Corporate inversion is one of the many strategies companies employ to reduce their tax burden. One way that a company can re-incorporate abroad is by having a foreign company buy its current operations. Assets are then owned by the foreign company, and the old incorporation is dissolved.For example, take a manufacturing company that incorporated itself in the United States in the 1950s. For years the majority of its revenue came from U.S. sales, but recently the percentage of sales coming from abroad has grown. Income from abroad is taxed in the United States, and U.S. tax credits do not cover all taxes that the company has to pay abroad. As the percentage of sales coming from foreign operations grows relative to domestic operations, the company will find itself paying more U.S. taxes because of where it incorporated. If it incorporates abroad, it can bypass having to pay higher U.S. taxes on income that is not generated in the United States. This is a corporate inversion.Corporate inversion is not considered tax evasion as long as it doesn’t involve misrepresenting information on a tax return or undertaking illegal activities to hide profits.


Kermit Roosevelt Jr. & the Iran Coup

Iran is in a de-facto Proxy War with Saudi Arabia for Middle East dominance. Sunni vs Shii’te conflict has spilled over multiple political boundaries. As such, we must understand US history with Iran if we are going to fix the mess in the Middle East. We have never formally apologized for Project Ajax. Iran is not the neo-conservative bogeyman as portrayed. There is constructive collaboration that may be achieved with this nation. Stability of the region is contingent on warming relations with the United States; especially of Iraq, Syria, & Afghanistan. The specter of the Cold War led the United States to do subversive operations. We must understand that 1% oil interests were veiled behind the popular warcry of Communist Containment. As such, the United States utilized the CIA to depose a democratically elected leader for a military dictator. The US reaps what it sows. It must atone for past action and create bilateral ties with Iran, regardless of our military commitments to Saudi Arabia.

Kermit Roosevelt, Jr.

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
For other persons with the same name, see Kermit Roosevelt (disambiguation).

Kermit Roosevelt, Jr. (February 16, 1916 – June 8, 2000), was a political action officer of the Central Intelligence Agency‘s (CIA) Directorate of Plans who coordinated the Operation Ajax, which aimed to orchestrate a coup d’état against Iran‘s prime ministerMohammed Mosaddeq, and return Mohammad Reza Pahlavi, the Shah of Iran, to Iran’s Sun Throne in August 1953. He was also the grandson of US president Theodore Roosevelt.


President Theodore Roosevelt with his grandsons Richard Derby (right) and holding Kermit Roosevelt, Jr (on his lap).

Kermit Roosevelt, Jr. was born in Buenos Aires in 1916, the eldest son of Kermit Roosevelt and Belle Wyatt Willard. Kermit, Sr. was assistant manager for the Buenos Aires branch of the National City Bank. He had two brothers, Joseph Willard Roosevelt and Dirck Roosevelt, and a sister, Belle Wyatt Roosevelt. Kermit Roosevelt, Jr. graduated from Groton School and Harvard University.

When Kermit, Jr. was 27, his father, a man who tended to drink heavily, committed suicide in Alaska where he had been stationed as an intelligence officer with the U.S. Army.

Kermit Roosevelt, Jr. married Mary Lowe “Polly” Gaddis in 1937. They had three sons and a daughter. His eldest son, Kermit Roosevelt III (born April 7, 1938), graduated from Groton School in the class of 1956 and is a Washington D.C. attorney. Another son, Mark Roosevelt(born 1955) is President of Antioch College. His other son is Jonathan Roosevelt and his daughter is Anne Mason of Bethesda.[1]

Roosevelt’s last days were spent at a retirement community in Cockeysville, Maryland.[2]

Middle East political activity

In the late 1940s he was on the advisory board of the Institute of Arab American Affairs Inc. The Institute published an article by him in Foreign Affairs in pamphlet form that made the argument that “US support of Zionism will be detrimental to long term US interests in the Middle East.”[3]

In a further effort to prevent the partition of Palestine into exclusive and separate Jewish and Arab states, Roosevelt together with Virginia Gildersleeve founded the Committee for Justice and Peace in the Holy Land in 1948, and served as the Committee’s executive director.[4]

In 1951, Roosevelt, together with Dorothy Thompson and a group of 24 American educators, theologians, and writers including Harry Emerson Fosdick and Virginia Gildersleeve founded the American Friends of the Middle East.[5] Roosevelt served the AFME as executive secretary for a time.[6]

Head of Operation Ajax

By the early 1950s, Kermit Roosevelt, Jr. was a senior officer in the CIA’s Middle Eastern division. At that time, there was a political crisis centered in Iran that commanded the focused attention of British and American intelligence outfits. In 1951, the Iranian parliament, under the leadership of the nationalistmovement of Dr. Mohammed Mossadegh, voted unanimously to nationalize the oil industry. This shut out the immensely profitable Anglo-Iranian Oil Company (AIOC), which was a pillar of Britain’s economy and political clout. A month after that vote, Mossadegh was elected prime minister of Iran.[7]

In response to nationalization, Britain placed an embargo on Iranian oil exports, which worsened the already fragile economy. Neither the AIOC nor Mossadegh was open to compromise in this period, with Britain insisting on a restoration of the AIOC and Mossadegh willing only to negotiate the terms of its compensation for lost assets. U.S. President Harry S. Truman ruled out joining Britain in a coup against Mossadegh, and Britain felt unable to act without American cooperation, particularly since Mossadegh had shut down their embassy in 1952.[7] Truman’s successor, President Dwight D. Eisenhower, was persuaded by anti-communist arguments that there was potential for Iran’s Communist Tudeh Party to capitalize on political instability and assume power, aligning Iran and its immense oil resources with the Soviet bloc. Coup plans which had stalled under Truman were revived by an eager intelligence corps, with powerful aid from the brothers John Foster Dulles (Secretary of State) and Allen Welsh Dulles (Director of Central Intelligence), after Eisenhower’s inauguration in 1953.[7]

According to Roosevelt, he slipped across the border under his CIA cover as “James Lockridge” on June 19, 1953. He was put up in the capital, Tehran, in a place rented by British intelligence. As Mr. Lockridge, he became a regular at the Turkish Embassy where he played tennis. No one suspected that “Mr. Lockridge” was the grandson of the 26th US President but he came close to blowing his cover. When playing tennis and making some frustrating mistake he would cry out, “Oh Roosevelt!” Puzzled by this, his friends asked him about this interesting way of expressing his annoyance with his game. He explained that as a loyal member of the Republican Party back in the states, that every Republican had nothing but scorn and hatred for Franklin D. Roosevelt and that he despised the man so much that he took to using FDR’s name as a curse.[8]

Under Roosevelt’s direction, the CIA and British intelligence funded and led a campaign of black propaganda and bribery leading to a coup d’etat to overthrow Mossadegh with the help of military forces loyal to the Shah in Operation Ajax.[9] The plot hinged on orders signed by the Shah to dismiss Mossadegh as prime minister and replace him with General Fazlollah Zahedi, a choice agreed on by the British and Americans.

Despite the high-level coordination and planning, the coup faltered initially and the Shah fled Iran. After a brief exile in Italy, however, the Shah was brought back again, this time through a second coup which was successful.

In his book All the Shah’s Men: An American Coup and the Roots of Middle East TerrorThe New York Times reporter Stephen Kinzer reported[7] that the CIA ordered Roosevelt to leave Iran. Roosevelt ignored the order and, instead organized a second coup, this one successful. The deposed Mossadegh was arrested, given a show trial, and placed in solitary confinement for three years in military prison, followed by house arrest for life. Zahedi was installed to succeed prime minister Mossadegh.

After that coup, Kinzer reported that the Shah said to Roosevelt, “I owe my throne to God, my people, my army—and to you.”[7]

Roosevelt tells his story

Twenty-six years later, Kermit Roosevelt took the unusual step of writing a book about how he and the CIA carried out the operation. He called his book Countercoup to press home the idea that the CIA coup was staged only to prevent a takeover of power by the Iranian Communist Party (Tudeh) closely backed by the Soviet Union. He also may have meant to imply that the exile of the Shah constituted the initial coup, and that he was merely restoring the rightful leader to power.

In 2003, William Blum, in Killing Hope: US Military and CIA Interventions Since World War II criticized Roosevelt for providing no evidence when he “argu[ed] that Mossadegh had to be removed to prevent a communist takeover” of Iran.[10] Blum noted that while Roosevelt kept repeating how Mossadegh was a danger due to his seizure of the oil industry and his other Socialist reforms as well as his cooperation with the Tudeh Party, Mossadegh’s role was much more nuanced.[10] This view was shared by many in the Intelligence community, although most notably the head of the CIA station in Iran resigned rather than participate in the coup. Many outside the intelligence community, including some in the Truman administration, had felt that Mossadegh should have been kept in power to prevent a Communist takeover.[10]


  • Arabs, Oil, and History: The Story of the Middle East (1949, reprint 1969, Kennikat Press, 1969) ISBN 0-8046-0532-7.
  • Countercoup: The Struggle for the Control of Iran (McGraw-Hill, 1979) ISBN 0-07-053590-6.
  • Roosevelt, Kermit. “Propaganda Techniques of the English Civil Wars – and the Propaganda Psychosis of Today.” Pacific Historical Review (University of California Press) 12, no. 4 (December 1943): 369-379.



  1. Jump up^ Kermit Roosevelt, 84, TR’s grandson. Mark Ribbing and Jacques Kelly. Baltimore Sun. Local ,4B. June 10, 2000.
  2. Jump up^
  3. Jump up^ Partition of Palestine: A Lesson in Pressure Politics
  4. Jump up^ Jews Against Zionism, Thomas A. Kolsky, Temple University Press, 1992, pp. 181–2.
  5. Jump up^ Miller, Robert Moats (1985). Harry Emerson Fosdick: Preacher, Pastor, Prophet. Oxford [Oxfordshire]: Oxford University Press. p. 192. ISBN 0-19-503512-7.
  6. Jump up^ Merkley, Paul (2001). Christian Attitudes towards the State of Israel. Montreal: McGill-Queen’s University Press. pp. 6–8. ISBN 0-7735-2188-7.
  7. Jump up to:a b c d e How to Overthrow A Government Pt. 1: The 1953 U.S. Coup in Iran,, March 5, 2004
  8. Jump up^ Roosevelt, Kermit, Jr. (1979). Countercoup, the Struggle for Control of Iran McGraw Hill/New York.
  9. Jump up^ New York Times Library. Iran/CIA Index.
  10. Jump up to:a b c William Blum. Killing Hope: US Military and CIA Interventions Since World War II. Zed Books Ltd; 2nd edition. 2003. p. 66.[1]

External links


A Progressive Capital Gains Tax Rate


inequality for time immemorial

Wealth inequality has been the downfall of many societies for time immemorial. Lasses-faire economic realities create non-linear accelerated disparities in income growth. The 1% wealth accumulation versus the 99% of American Citizens is an economic fact as of July 2014. Any denier of wealth inequality in the US is, most likely, also a denier of scientific inquiry as a whole. This blog post is making the assumption, therefore, that wealth inequality is unfair and a fiscal problem to be solved.

Unfortunately, The US Political System has been poisoned by the corruption of wealth. It has been painted as a non-issue; rarely brought up by any but the Bernie Sanders or Elizabeth Warren’s of the world. The game is rigged by the power, wealth elite. Those with money have made barriers to entry harder. They have ensured through fiscal tax policy that they can accumulate wealth at rates higher than the average (powerless) citizen. 1 Vote matters not in this game. A Conservative #SCOTUS has ensured that Money is considered Speech in this nation. There are no limits or transparency in today’s political contribution system. Vested interests won the day in the 2000’s and we are seeing the result of what they declared to do. The rich are getting richer and the poor are losing ground due to unfair taxation & wage stagnation. President George W. Bush, with a GOP Congress and Conservative Supreme Court ensured that Capital Gains tax rates were lowered. The outward goal was to bolster equities markets via supply-side economic theory on supply/demand.

There are two forms of policies that may be utilized by Gov’t apparatus; Fiscal & Monetary Policy. An independent Federal Reserve System in the US is robust and functional.  We are treating Monetary Policy as Ceterus Paribus. Fiscal Policy is the issue at hand. I cannot speak to the political will to accomplish anything fair and balanced for the masses. The masses simply are not a large enough voting bloc or political donor to receive treatment becoming of US Citizenry. From this powerless standpoint, I make the argument that there is a way to begin to reverse the damage created by the GOP on American Fiscal Policy.

I propose a Progressive Capital Gains Tax Rate.

 The purpose of a Progressive Capital Gains rate is to ensure parity between the wealthy elite and the average income tax wage earner. Income tax is a progressive system, ensuring that those who have more income also have more fiscal responsibility to society. The richest members of American Society have enjoyed paying far lower rates. This is due to the way they receive income. They do not collect the majority of their income via taxable means of income tax. They are subject to Capital Gains rates. As such it is only fair and balanced to assume that Capital Gains rates are applied progressively as they are with income tax. Progressive Capital Gains tax rates would better ensure that the Middle Class is able to partake in real wealth creation. Wage Stagnation and Inflationary pressures dwindle purchasing power. Statistical finance through diversification and systematic investing provides an avenue for the Middle Class to create wealth. The rich, on the other hand, do not need accelerated incentives of wealth creation to better their lives.

Supply-Side Reaganomic Trickle-Down Theory has been a dismal lie to the American Public. Not only is it a strain on the Middle Class, It has strained the Federal and State Fiscal Budgetary situation. Lower economic targets for revenues (after cutting tax rates) has been a weapon of the Right Wing to dismantle social safety-nets. Financial infrastructure has been gutted by Republican control in key areas since Carter lost the White House. A progressive capital gains rate would alleviate this problem by ensuring that the wealthy pay their fair share. This is such a simple concept. The 1% should not, and cannot continue, to pay low Capital Gains rates. The Middle Class should have the opportunity to invest with tax rates that are commensurate to their status and [lack of] wealth. The wealth-elite, which are calling the political shots, should in-turn transparently pay their rightful share of budgetary responsibility. I firmly believe that Progressive Capital Gains taxation is a winning grassroots populist issue. It is easy to be for this and is difficult to justify how this is unfair in such a disproportionate society. This issue in its implementation would better vet politicians as for or against the majority populace. As political contributions are unlimited and not transparent, the game-theory level of thinking kicks in over Progressive Capital Gains Taxation. A politician for progressive capital gains is politically positioned to support the Middle Class. Those opposed are ultimately choosing to declare that they serve their minority wealthy-elite masters over the US Citizenry.