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Czernin

count, rumania and war

CZERNIN, cherinin, Count Ottokar von und zu Chudenitz and Morzin, garian statesman: b. Dimokar, Bohemia, 27 Aug. 1875. For six years preceding the out break of the European War he served as Austro-Hungarian Minister to Rumania. On his appointment to that diplomatic post the Hungarian press raised a chorus of disapproval and Count Tisza, the Premier, even went to Vienna and protested to the Emperor Francis Joseph against the appointment. But Count Czernin was strongly supported by the late heir-apparent, the late Archduke Francis Ferdi nand (q.v.), and was duly accredited to Ru mania. The reason for his unpopularity in Hungary was that, both as politician and author, he had striven to range the German and Slav elements of the Dual Monarchy as against the Magyars. When Rumania declared war on Austria-Hungary on 27 Aug. 1916, another vio lent outcry arose in Hungary against Count Czernin for his failure to bring Rumania into the war on the Austro-German side. He had said all during the crisis that Rumania would either maintain a benevolent neutrality or else join the Central powers. It was charged against him that while he was still in Bucharest, Ru manian troops had been invading Hungarian territory (Transylvania) for 24 hours before either Vienna or Berlin knew that Rumania intended war. Already in 1914-15 Count

Czernin had held out to Rumanian statesmen a prospect of liberal concessions by Hungary to the Rumanes of Transylvania, for which he was violently denounced by the Hungarian press. Nevertheless, on the removal of Baron Burian (q.v.) from the Foreign Office in December 1916, Count Czernin was appointed to succeed him, assuming also at the same time the offices of Minister of the Imperial House and presi dent of the Joint Council of Ministers. As Baron Burian was always regarded as the instrument of Count Tisza, the accession of Count Czernin, who belongs to an old Bohemian (Slav) family with clerical tendencies, seemed to imply a diminution of Hungarian influence over the foreign affairs of the monarchy. One of his first official acts was to affirm the solidar ity of the Austro-German alliance against all enemies in a telegram to the German Chancellor.

See WAR, EUROPEAN - PEACE MOVEMENTS.