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Colonel
Oct 29, 2006
854
0
Presidents of the Republic of Gran Colombia

600px-Flag_of_Colombia_svg.png

Simon Bolivar
Federalist Party
assassinated
(1819-1828)

Carlos Urdaneta
Federalist Party
(1828-1844)

Miguel Caro
Conservative Party
lost Congressional majority
(1844-1846)

Enrique Herran
Liberal Party
resigned due to health reasons
(1846-1848)

José Lopez
Liberal Party
resigned
(1848-1854)

José Obando
Liberal Party
couped
(1854)

José Melo
Liberal Party
(1854-18??)​
 
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unmerged(59077)

Tzar of all the Soviets
Jul 17, 2006
5.575
7
Oooh, a BolivAAR.

watching.
 

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Colonel
Oct 29, 2006
854
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600px-Flag_of_Colombia_svg.png


Bolivar's Legacy
I. 1828-1843


bolivar_rec.gif

"El Liberator"


The assassination of Gran Colombia’s military dictator Simon Bolivar by secessionist interests in September 1828 sent shockwaves through the South American federation and the world as a whole. Dubbed ‘El Liberator’ for his crucial role in freeing much of the continent from Spanish colonial rule, Bolivar had been president of numerous republics at numerous times, even having the nation of Bolivia named in his honour. However it was Gran Colombia that was his true calling, for it embodied his dream of a Latin American analogue to the United States of America.

Nonetheless, his liberal ideal was far from reality and he fought tooth and nail with conservatives to retain the union, finally going the way of Caesar and Napoleon in 1826 and suspending democratic rule in the hope of creating stability. His death was hoped by many, mostly landed, regional interests, to signal the death of Gran Colombia and soon after rebellions erupted the three major cities of Quito, Caracas and Bogotá, the federal capital as well as the countryside.

In response General Urdaneta, Bolivar’s confidant and named successor, called on the people to resist the “selfish interests of caudillos [landowners] and Spanish-sympathisers” and preserve the young republic. General Santander, a former ally of Bolivar turned critic was executed for the assassination, despite a lack of evidence and his opposition to regionalism. Soon civil war raged as Urdaneta’s Patriotic Army, a mixture of conscripts and die-hard veterans of Bolivar’s wars of independence battled the secessionists. Due to the very nature of the revolts, that of mixed regional and personal interests, Urdaneta was able to suppress his opponents’ piece meal, finally crushing the embryonic Republic of New Granada, the major secessionist force, during the bloody siege of Bogotá in 1834.

GColom36.jpg

Gran Colombia- battered, bloodied but still standing

The country retained, General Urdaneta reinstated democracy and called fresh elections for the National Congress in 1838 after cleaning up smaller pockets of resistance in the mountains. Despite his more superlative intentions in stepping down as dictator he knew in light of the Civil War that he would soon return to his position of power at the head of the Federalist Party. As the only organised political party in Colombia, having copied much of the structure of the re-born Conservative Party in Britain, the Federalists had a distinct advantage over opposition groups. This combined with the death or exile of many Colombian conservative leaders and a general loathing amongst the populace for the secessionists enforced by wartime propaganda, the crushing electoral result was hardly surprising.

38Elec.jpg

Urdaneta was officially proclaimed President of Gran Colombia on February 14th, the day following the election. Much of Urdaneta’s tenure would be focused on rebuilding the country, devastated by years of war, the most notable causality being the old capital, Bogotá. Although Urdaneta remained in the crumbling Presidential Palace as a sign of solidarity with the city’s population, virtually all government business was conducted from Caracas, including sessions of Congress. In a country half the size of Western Europe, covered in jungle and mountains, that had lacked a decent road system prior to the Civil War with railroads only a dream for the future, rebuilding was slow and painful. Regardless, the Federalists, a party of military men inspired by the Enlightenment, encouraged the two things they knew best: modernisation and conquest.

With Bogotá a ruin and Caracas dominated by exporting raw materials, Gran Colombia’s first steps into industrialisation took place in Quito, the smallest of the three major cities. Surrounded by forest, Quito unsurprisingly became a centre for the lumber trade with mills springing up in and around the town in 1838 to 40, providing jobs for the region’s displaced populations, victims of war in the countryside.

Simultaneously, partly as a rallying cry for the newly re-united Colombia, and partly because old habits die hard, President Urdaneta and his military staff drew up plans to invade Brazil. Since Gran Colombia’s foundation, she had been in dispute with the Brazilian Empire over their border in the Amazon basin. By its very nature, the territory’s frontier was hard to enforce let alone define and with Rio de Janeiro suffering from internal unrest triggered by the successful breakaway Piranti Republic, Urdaneta hoped to have the border defined in his favour.

AmaCol.jpg

The disputed territories

Plans were drawn up throughout 1840 while troops moved to the border. War almost came in March when a Colombian outpost was spotted by a Brazilian patrol on the wrong side of the border, however an apology from Bogotá quickly calmed the situation and preparations continued unbeknownst to the outside world. Urdaneta's staff advised a quick attack in Amazonia before the year was out but the President, a notably cautious man, waited knowing some 40,000 Brazilian troops lay near the border in light of the March incident. As his commanders’ patience wore thin, Urdaneta saw his perfect opportunity in September 1841 as Brazil’s southern coastal cities rioted, with Emperor Pedro II forced to flee to the interior. Quickly gaining the blessing of Great Britain, a major trade partner and protector of the Piranti Republic, Urdaneta ordered the invasion on the 16th.

Two brigades crossed the border, one consisting of various cavalry units with an extensive native auxiliary stormed through the disputed territory, seizing Brazilian outposts and border forts, while the main force of over 9,000 infantry under General Herran’s command marched directly for Brazil proper hoping to seize as much land as possible before retaliation from the numerically superior opponent. The plan was moderately successful. Although the cavalry were able to seize Brazilian positions with ease, capturing over 1,000 Imperial troops for the loss of only 73 combat deaths, the force was decimated by disease with a quarter of the men dying and two third of the horses. Reinforcements had to be sent before they could join the main army, itself wounded from its advance in the Amazon. Nonetheless, word didn’t reach the Emperor of the invasion until December 1st taking his Army completely by surprise. Confounded by revolt in the countryside, orders didn’t reach the Imperial Army under the Baron of Caxais in the south to counter-attack for another five days.

BraColWar1.jpg

Colombians troops continued unopposed through the Amazon basin until March 11th 1842 when Herran, now commanding the cavalry vanguard of the invasion, was suddenly assaulted by Caxais’ forces near Borba. Despite being ill equipped to defend, the cavalry utilised the hilly terrain, holding off the Brazilian infantry with carbines and pistols. Eventually as the battle degenerated into hand-to-hand combat, the dragoons and hussars turned the tide with their skilled swordsmanship and soon the battle turned into a slaughter as the heavens opened turning the field into a quagmire. Mudflows hampered the Brazilian advance, allowing companies to be cut to pieces one at a time until Caxais, seeing half of his force either dead or wounded, finally ordered the retreat late in the day.

BraColWar2.jpg

Battle of Borba Hills

The Baron had unwittingly won a strategic victory however, with hundreds of Herran’s elite cavalry now lying dead with little hope of reinforcement in the near future. Caxais’ by comparison had access to 45,000 troops in the region in total while Colombian numbers never topped 15,000.

Herran was aware of his restrictions and following several smaller scale battles between Caxais and his two brigades, utilised his loose command structure and native guides to fight a guerrilla war. Although by August he had brought crushing numbers to bear, Caxais was unwilling to break up his army for fear of a repeat of the Battle of Borba Hills and so chased his numerous foes across the Brazilian Amazon for months. The devastation caused by Colombian raids on Caxais’ supply wagons and Brazilian settlements soon saw Imperial food and munitions stocks fall low.

Crippled by their own numbers, which reached 60,000 by 1843, the Brazilians couldn’t bring the Colombians to battle while remaining too insecure over their rear to invade Colombia. Eventually, with the far more economically important south on the verge of revolution, Emperor Pedro II offered terms through the British and Central American embassies. A ceasefire was called on March 3rd and on September 1st, the two foes met in British Guyana along with an observing delegation from the USCA*. Desperate for peace, Brazil offered to renounce all claims to the North Amazon. President Urdaneta accepted the terms personally, knowing his own army, racked by malaria had mere weeks to go before disintegration. Britain endorsed the settlement, including a secret article that guaranteed British logging interests in the vast forests of ‘Colombian Amazonia’, an implied benefit offered by Urdaneta that had been the prompt for her to turn a blind eye to the conflict. Brazil walked away humiliated and somewhat isolated from the regional powers. President Urdaneta basked in the glory of the Treaty of Georgetown.

TG.jpg

Treaty of Georgetown

*United States of Central America
 
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unmerged(59077)

Tzar of all the Soviets
Jul 17, 2006
5.575
7
Awesome. 19th century wars over colonial claims are what Vicky is all about.

And the description of the campaign is awesome. Mud and disease and incompetent commanders.

Carry on :D
 

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Strategos ton Exkoubitores
Aug 9, 2006
3.100
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*Subscribes*
 

unmerged(62170)

Colonel
Oct 29, 2006
854
0
Pablo Sanchez said:
I can't see any of your photobucket pictures, and when I tried to copy/paste the URLs directly into the address bar photobucket only spat back an error.

Other than that, this looks like a fine start!

:confused: They're working fine for me both on page and as URLs, anyone else got this problem?

Anyway thanks guys nice to see you're enjoying it.
 

Maximilliano

The Quixotic Emperor of Mexico
3 Badges
Jun 30, 2005
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i couldn't see the pictures either, but fascinating start, i'll be watching
 

unmerged(63836)

Field Marshal
Dec 25, 2006
2.590
3
Cause my megaAAR will soon reach Victoria, I`ll follow this. Interesting to watch , how alternative history of South America will develop.
 

unmerged(62170)

Colonel
Oct 29, 2006
854
0
:confused:

I logged out and came back and the pics didnt show up, URL works fine and if you right click 'Show Picture' they appear but I quite puzzled by this porblem

EDIT: Ah well, shall have ot figure it out but now another update once I get it looknig all sparkly and stuff. ;)

EDIT THE SECOND: Photobucket is experiencing difficulties which makes sense, if it doesnt 'clear up' by tomorrow I'll re-post the pics via ImageShack, a new post is on its way so enjoy and I'm glad you guys are enjoying this.
 
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unmerged(62170)

Colonel
Oct 29, 2006
854
0
600pxflagofcolombiasvguf5.png


Bolivar's Legacy
II. 1843-1846


Rafael_urdaneta.jpg

President Undaneta

Unfortunately for President Urdaneta, his position following the Amazonian War quickly stagnated before finally collapsing, his glorious position in Colombian history snatched by instability.

By October 1843, the Federalist Party was in disarray. The War for all its triumphant end, had been unpopular across Colombian society especially in light of the destructive civil war Urdaneta had instigated to retain the union, its scars still prevelent. Many Federalists opposed a war of conquest against a fellow South American state on principle while the Conservatives, by now having reformed into a moderately respectable force under José Eusebio Caro called it irresponsible in light of its ecnomic impact when money could be better spent re-building the country.

The Conservative resurgence in itself also weakened Urdaneta’s base, with Caro and others forming a moderate alliance of landowners and right-wing Federalists who together called for greater autonomy for the provinces within a federal framwork. Caro declared in Congress following the Treaty of Georgetown that the war had been for naught, with thousands dying so Colombia could annex “ten thousand square miles of swamp and mosquitos”.

The financial cost of the War soon dawned, while the fiscal gain from Amazonia was little more than trickle given its present lack of roads. To remove the national deficit created, Urdaneta and his supporters attempted to raise tariffs and property tax. Sessions in Congress saw the President defeated despite his apparent huge majority of 403 of 500 seats. On the second defeat of the legislation in November and with many suspecting a third attempt backed up by punishment of rebel Federalists a vote of no confidence was issued against Urdaneta by left-wing Federalist Congressman Antonio Blanco the 17th. Left-wing rebellion and Conservatives along with a large number of abstainers saw Urdaneta lose 213-202, forcing an election.

Urdaneta was implored by his ministers to refuse the result and dissolve Congress but to his credit, the President balked at the idea declaring, “I will not go as Simon [Bolivar] went, but I must go”. The vote broke the Federalist Party’s back. The left wing under Blanco formed the Radical Party on November 20th while the rump of the party restyled themselves the Liberals. Urdaneta stood down as leader, backing the war hero General Herran as his successor. Elections took place on January 1st 1844.

44elecfr8.jpg

Urdaneta was mortified at the swift victory of his old enemies and following the result retired from the military and from politics altogether, passing away on his estate in Venezuela six months later. General Herran by comparison was livid with the Radicals for splitting the liberal vote although it had only allowed the Conservatives to form a minority government. Ironically this tension allowed a cautious President Caro to count on Liberal votes, strengthening his ministry.

That said, Caro was stuck between his landowner base and the Herran’s Liberals whom he had to placate. This climate saw no bill to de-centralise government as many conservatives had hoped, nonetheless the free trade and laissez-faire policies of the Federalists were scrapped due to the dominance of the interventionists under Herran within the Liberal Party in February. Protectionism was re-imposed with high tariffs on foreign imports of meat, cattle, timber and other goods, while the old flat tax imposed by Bolivar went replaced by progressive taxation, which garnered support of the Conservatives from farmers and workers. In reality combined with the new tariffs, and tax breaks for the Conservatives’ caudillo allies the system amounted to regression, making the position of the poor even worse than previous. It mattered little however given Colombia’s restricted suffrage and the Conservatives remained popular with the electorate.

joseecaro.gif

President Caro

The same month word reached Caracas and Bogotá that the eastern Spanish speaking half of Haiti was in revolt. The province of Santo Domingo had been a Spanish colony until 1824 and following its independence had sought statehood within Gran Colombia. However the black republic of Haiti had seized the opportunity and annexed the colony, which made up two-thirds of the island. The Spanish speaking white population had chaffed for years under black rule from French-speaking Port-au-Prince and twenty years after their first war of independence they rose up in arms once more.

President Caro saw an opportunity to expand Colombian power into the Caribbean, with popular unrest, an historical precedent and only the poorly armed Haitian militia to contend with (the country itself, as a republic of free slaves was a diplomatic pariah internationally). On February 27th he announced his intention to “re-unify” Santo Domingo with Colombia and ordered an invasion.

A brigade of infantry landed in Port Santo Domingo, the province’s main settlement on March 18th unopposed bar cheering crowds of Hispanics. The Domingan rebels accepted Caro’s “offer” of unification with Colombia immediately. The Haitian now faced thousands of trained regulars alongside thousands of armed rebels defending mountainous terrain. After several months of bloodless standoff and stubborn refusal the Haitian government finally renounced all claims to Santo Domingo on June 2nd. President Caro visited the country on June 7th and officially announced the induction of the state of Santo Domingo into Colombia.

sdompz4.jpg

The new state, with a large population of free slaves immediately caused headaches for the Conservatives. The State Assembly opened after elections on July 15th and soon descended into chaos over the issue of re-enslaving Africans who been ‘taken’ from their masters in 1824, an issue particularly opposed by the three black members of the Assembly! The Radicals in Caracas brought the issue to attention and demanded the President act to stop the enslavement of citizens, equal under Bolivar’s 1819 Constitution.

Once more Caro was between a rock and a hard place. His caudillo allies knew that if Santo Domingo officially illegalised slavery then the rest of Colombia would follow suit to their economic detriment. Meanwhile one of the Conservative Party’s founding principles, strongly upheld by its ex-Federalist wing, was the defence of the Constitution and slavery had been a major issue much as in the United States on the definition of men created equal. More pressure was poured on from clergymen and the Liberals who quit their vendetta against the Radicals briefly for the issue.

C18%20Field%20slaves.jpg

Field slaves working on a Venezualan Estate

Finally after much deliberation and bargaining, President Caro called a vote on the abolition of slavery urging all parties to back it. The vote went through 389 to 111 partly thanks to promises of compensation to slave-owning caudillos however the Liberals forced the payment down much to the anger of rural voters.

Abolition didn’t end the issue however, for while industrialists prospered as the lumber and furniture factories of Quito and Bogotá expanded and developed, the traditional landowning elite fermented over their lost labour. Production fell and costs rose as 100,000 people suddenly had to be paid for their work. Although in truth the profit margin narrowed only slightly, with compensation softening the blow, the caudillos still cursed President Caro for upsetting the age-old rural hierarchy. Protests took place across the countryside with some escalating into violence and lynchings.

Caro knew that when he next election came, no matter how many factory owners and clerks he won over, the caudillos were his electoral base and needed t be satisfied. In February 1846 after heavy pressure, Caro proposed the Criminal Labour Bill to Congress. The Bill called for long serving criminals to be used as hard labourers to ‘repay society’ and with private landowners being able to procure the service of as many as they could afford to keep with government subsidy as aid. To the Radicals and Liberals the intention was clear: state sponsored slavery. Uproar followed with particular attention being drawn to Article IV, which declared:

“Only convicts of strength, stature and complexion adequate for manual labour will be considered for work”

Radical leader Antonio Blanco saw this as making ‘labour’ exclusive to Africans and natives and blocked the Bill sighting it as unconstitutional. The Liberals followed suit. Soon Caro realised his position and without putting the Bill to a vote, resigned as President. Without election, a shaky Radical-Liberal alliance took power under General Herran.
 
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unmerged(59737)

Strategos ton Exkoubitores
Aug 9, 2006
3.100
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I’m loving the politicking.

BTW, the pictures work fine for me.
 

unmerged(59077)

Tzar of all the Soviets
Jul 17, 2006
5.575
7
I love the politics.

Really exciting read.
 

unmerged(37096)

Lt. General
Dec 21, 2004
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Great start, and the pictures are fine for me
 

GeneralHannibal

JL Spokesman
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Nov 29, 2005
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Great AAR!

I love the various political intrigues.
 

unmerged(62170)

Colonel
Oct 29, 2006
854
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Damn I never heard of so many say they enjoy politics in the same room. :p

Glad you like, up next is a meaty post, a nice mix of politicking and slaughter!
 

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Colonel
Oct 29, 2006
854
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600px-Flag_of_Colombia_svg.png


Bolivar's Legacy
III. 1846-1848

santander02.jpg

President Herran

General Herran was something of a reluctant heir to the mantle of Liberal leader and ultimately President of Colombia. A career officer with a family history of service in the Spanish military, Herran had reluctantly sided with the charismatic Bolivar during the Wars of Independence. Indeed his membership of the Federalist, and later the Liberal Party was more as a matter of course for a Bolivarian Officer than for any ideological ideal. Nonetheless, Herran understood his duty following the fall of Urdaneta as President and intended to serve his country as he always had.

Led somewhat by his more experienced ministers, Herran’s first ministry was a move away from the near-dictatorial style that optimised Colombian Presidents. While many would criticise this, with the Conservatives denouncing the government as an oligarchy masked by a popular puppet, Herran’s rule would be marked by stable growth and reform for Gran Colombia.

President Herran’s first decree was for the official transition of government to Caracas. Having been the ‘temporary’ seat of Congress for almost a decade, the port had become the country’s financial centre while the bureaucracy, still located in Bogotá, languished and stagnated hundreds of miles from the men it served. By 1847 all government departments would be relocated. The move also held a symbolic power, moving the Presidential Palace away from Bogotá machine-politics and to the flourishing port of Caracas, represented the opening up of Colombia to the outside as an industrial and trading power. The same day as the capital officially changed location, flat tax was introduced again and the agricultural and timber tariffs abolished.

Reform continued in March when Radical leader Antonio Blanco, Interior Minister in the coalition cabinet called for the ‘emergency powers’ introduced under Urdaneta during the Civil War to be revoked and the 1819 Constitution and the Bill of Rights to be fully restored. The most important powers, namely martial law and rule by decree, had been removed following the war in 1835 but restrictions on freedom of speech and freedom of the press had still been maintained, ostensibly to limit anti-union propaganda. However with the war fading in memory and the secessionist movement a tiny fraction of its wartime strength its purpose had gone. Although some leading Liberals opposed Blanco’s demand, President Herran was in agreement both morally and practically, with the weak Radical-Liberal alliance only weeks old, he had no intention of losing government back to the Conservatives so soon. Even the most authoritarian of Herran’s ministers accepted the political reality and within a week, they had fallen into line, backing the reform.

As 1846 continued, the laissez-faire economics of the Radicals and Liberals bore fruit with Caracas becoming the centre of finance in Latin America, the fledgling stock exchange opened in 1845 booming with foreign investment, much of it from the United States. The trend continued and in December the American ambassador met with Herran to discuss a transcontinental railway across the Panama isthmus, to help the transport of settlers to the recently acquired territory of California by sea.

UStreaty.jpg

Previous plans for such a rail link had drawn up previous with Bolivar being the first in 1827 when a survey believed it feasible, however Bolivar’s assassination the next year and the ensuing chaos of the Civil War saw these plans shelved. In 1836, President Jackson of the United States commissioned a study of proposed routes for interoceanic communication, in order to protect the interests of Americans travelling between the oceans. This resulted in the United States acquiring a franchise for a trans-Isthmian railroad; however, the scheme was a victim of the economic panic of 1837, and came to nothing. In 1838 a French company was given a concession for the construction of a road, rail or canal route across the isthmus. An initial engineering study recommended a canal from Limón Bay to the bay of Boca del Monte, twelve miles west of Panama; but the scheme again collapsed for lack of funding.

However with immigrants now travelling in their thousands to California and the prospect of gold in the new territory, the US government was again willing to invest in a transoceanic link across Panama. Herran’s cabinet accepted the offer which promised to give the isthmus a new lease of life. Panama was the most rebellious and ungovernable province of Gran Colombia, with a population detached from Caracas and military governors developing a habit of mutiny, the area was put under direct rule by the federal government following one such botched conspiracy in 1840, the only province bar inhospitable Amazonia to be deined autonomy. The United States was offering the devlopment of a railroad that would open up Panama and allow greater access to its natural, not to mention the benefits of trade and American migration. In a country that lacked a commerical railway of anysize even in the industrial centres of the three big cities, it was a valuable opportunity.

As the long, deadly process of constructing the Panama Railway got underway, in April 1847, news reached Caracas of revolution in Europe. The crumbling Austrian Empire of the Hapsburgs was falling apart as liberals and nationalists across Hungary and Italy revolted against the absolute monarch in Vienna; support for the rebellion was heartfelt across South America. Giuseppe Garibaldi, the Italian revolutionary and saviour of the Pirantini Republic during its War of Independence against Brazil called on Latin Americans to his support his countrymen’s cause as he had there’s. Garibaldi was in Caracas when he made his plea April 5th, rallying thousands outside the National Congress, with the Italian tricolour being flown from a makeshift flagpole. President Herran gave his full support but regretted he could not take Colombia to war with Austria. Nonetheless, General de Mosquera, a close friend of Garibaldi and veteran of both the Revolution and Civil War resigned his commission to join the venture and formed the Bolivar Brigade, with over five thousand volunteers, many of them students, joining up from Colombia alongside a further five thousand from across Latin America.

gari1.gif

Giuseppe Garibaldi

After organising and training his new force in Colombia, Mosquera used donations from wealthy industrialists to gain passage on dozens of ships, and after several close run-ins with the Austrian Navy, arrived in Venice on July 2nd. The Bolivar Brigade immediately began marching north towards the fledging Venetian Republic’s frontier and on July 17th engaged an Austrian brigade crossing the border near Verona.

The battle was a bloody slogging march, lasting three consecutive days as the Austrian commander attempted to push through towards the city. Finally on the 20th, the Austrians fled the field following an abortive bayonet charge. Regardless, the Bolivar Brigade had shown its inexperience with only a small core of veterans stopping a full-scale rout by the young volunteers on two separate occasions during the battle. The élan of several units too had been a detriment, charging unsupported into the Austrian gun line. It was phyrric victory with 500 irreplaceable soldiers dead and further thousand wounded or missing. Mosquera set up defences around Verona but on hearing of the advance of three entire corps to the area numbering some 100,000 men and the Lombardian and Piedmontese armies refusing to cross their own borders to aide him, he was forced to flee back to Venice.

verona.jpg

On returning on August 1st, Mosquera discovered the Republic’s capital to be in chaos, its fledgling navy having been destroyed in the Adriatic by the Austrians only the day previous. Meanwhile the Venetian army of 16,000 was spread out across its Alpine border, preparing for the coming storm of a combined Austro-Bavarian-Prussian army of upwards of a quarter million men. Refusing to join the pointless action, Mosquera took command of Venice; raising a further 8,000 Venetian troops to help defend the city. Trenches were dug, canals flooded and the defenders precious few artillery pieces positioned as Mosquera pleaded with Roman, Sicilian, Piedmontese and Lombardian commanders to reinforce the city. However no aid came with the revolutionary governments struggling to retain their positions from reactionaries.

After an abortive amphibious raid on December 3rd and several hundred reinforcements from Colombia before Christmas, the assault proper began on January 6th 1848. Marshal Mollinary, commander of the Austrian Army in Italy sent in a screening force of 20,000 Hungarian loyalists to probe the defences. Mosquera was caught be surprise and struggled to halt the seasoned Imperial forces. The probes petered out by the 10th as the main force of 120,000 appeared having crushed the Venetian border defences in a vicious winter campaign. At first the Mollinary’s numbers were as much a curse as a blessing, his huge formations struggling through the flooded plains surrounding Venice, and heavy causalities were inflicted turning the attempted storm into a siege. However the Bolivarians and Venetian couldn’t hold forever and on January 19th several batteries of Prussian guns arrived and began bombarding the defenders. On the 20th, Mosquera was killed by a cannonball as he rode out to bolster his men, signalling the beginning of Venice’s fall.

venezia.jpg

Mollinary launched a dawn assault the next day and to his surprise the withering fire he (and no doubt his troops!) had become accustomed to didn’t materialise, with only scattered pockets of musket fire falling upon the Imperial and German infantry while the Venetian cannon had been silenced the previous day. The city was in panic as Lieutenant-General Bravo, Mosquera’s second-in-command attempted to lead the Bolivar Brigade out of the tightening ring presented by Marshal Mollinary. Although almost a thousand escaped by ship, must of the Brigade fled on foot, across the Venetian marshland. On January 29th, the Brigade reached the port of Padua at the Roman Republic’s border and boarded the chartered fleet to safety in Sicily. Over half of the original Brigade didn’t escape. On February 7th the Republic of Venice officially surrendered to Vienna.


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Tzar of all the Soviets
Jul 17, 2006
5.575
7
Awww.

Well, the Empire is still too strong for nationalism. But I'm sure the Austrians will not be happy about you meddling.
 

unmerged(59737)

Strategos ton Exkoubitores
Aug 9, 2006
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You aren’t powerful enough to rumble with the big boys…yet.
 

unmerged(62170)

Colonel
Oct 29, 2006
854
0
Awww.

Well, the Empire is still too strong for nationalism. But I'm sure the Austrians will not be happy about you meddling.

No doubt. We may see future reprecussions, and no doubt Colombia's standing in continental Europe has taken a dip. "Americans in VENICE! How vile"! they'll say :p

You aren’t powerful enough to rumble with the big boys…yet.

Looks skyward...

---------------

Might update tonight, or tommorow, I'm in an AAR-writing mood but i'm off to see 300 on the old cinemamatograph.