Chapter

The Prime Minister's Dictatorial Powers: The Russo‐Turkish War and Conflicts within the Cabinet

Miloš Ković

in Disraeli and the Eastern Question

Published in print November 2010 | ISBN: 9780199574605
Published online January 2011 | e-ISBN: 9780191595134 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199574605.003.0008
The Prime Minister's Dictatorial Powers: The Russo‐Turkish War and Conflicts within the Cabinet

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With the outbreak of the Russo‐Turkish war, Disraeli began to make ever‐more radical moves. His policy of deterrence was interpreted by Derby, however, as a deliberate provocation of conflict. Simultaneously with his distancing from Derby, Disraeli sought to draw closer to the queen and Salisbury. He prioritized secret diplomacy through informal emissaries (Corry, the Rothschilds, Colonel Wellesley, Butler‐Johnstone) over formal channels. Following the fall of Plevna and the Adrianople Armistice, public opinion began moving his way, while a militant jingoism came to life. With the queen fully won over, a firm majority in Parliament and favourably inclined public opinion, following his successful manoeuvres to drive back Carnarvon and Derby, Disraeli gained dictatorial control over Britain's foreign policy.

Keywords: Russo‐Turkish war; Plevna; Derby; Carnarvon; Queen Victoria; jingoism; dictatorial power

Chapter.  21035 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Modern History (1700 to 1945)

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