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Kaiser Wilhelm the Second

Welcome to the Kaiser Wilhelm the Second page.
General Information

Noteworthy Relations   Relationship   Country Crown
Prince Wilhelm         son            Germany
Tsar Nicholas II       cousin         Russia
King Edward VII        uncle          England
King George V          cousin         England
King Frederick II      father         Prussia
Queen Victoria         grandmother    England
Emperor Wilhelm I      grandfather    Germany

Politics: Above all, the Kaiser wanted "a place in the sun" for the 
German people. The problem was the only places left were in the shade. 
There was very little room left for new colonization in the early part 
of this century. Never the less the Kaiser built up the German military 
machine and under the Tirpitz Plan, built a naval fleet to rival that of 
Great Britain. The term "saber rattler" sums up his politics as well as 
his personality. Historian Barbara Tuchman put it well when she referred 
to the Kaiser as "possessor of the least inhibited tongue in Europe". 

Personal: The Kaiser was born with a withered left arm (like FDR's 
polio, this defect was pretty well covered up and is visible in only a 
few photographs). This, together with having some tough footsteps in 
which to follow, led Wilhelm towards the military lifestyle. He loved 
his numerous uniforms and surrounding himself with the elite of German 
military society. 

Misconception: The Kaiser was a war monger solely responsible for the 
First World War. The Kaiser did not start the war. The Kaiser did not 
want the war. "Saber rattling" is one thing, a war with the other major 
European powers is something very different indeed! The most that can be 
said is that the Kaiser did not do enough to try to control the actions 
of Austria-Hungary and prevent the outbreak of war. In the end he 
accepted war. 

Fate: The Kaiser was forced to abdicate as part of the Armistice. He 
went to Holland where he died in 1941. He is buried at Doorn. 
Kaiser's Quotes
"only fit to live in a country house and grow turnips" The Kaiser on Czar Nicholas II "a very nice boy" The Kaiser on King George V (only six years his junior) "bear yourselves as Huns of Attila" The Kaiser to troops heading for the Boxer Rebellion in China "He is satan, you cannot imagine what a satan he is" The Kaiser on King Edward VII "a spirited note, what?" The Kaiser on the ultimatum to Serbia "A great moral victory for Vienna, but with it, every reason for war disappears." The Kaiser on the Serbian reply to the ultimatum "Gentlemen, you will regret this." The Kaiser to the general staff on the decision to mobilize

Wilhelm II was crowned Emperor in (midyear) 1888.

Kaiser Wilhelm the Second in full regalia.

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For Information on other historical figures of World War I go here