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"With Andrew Roberts, author of Napoleon live Polian, the great after the band commands all for his prowess on the battlefield. But what of the diplomacy necessary for this new France that he's putting together his reach into Prussia and Australia's relations with Russia. I turn them to his first meeting with the all important metric this happens in in August. Eighteen o six metre, Nick is the new Austrian ambassador, and he will become a pair of eyes on this process of Napoleon rising power falling from power, and then knitting Europe back together, Andrew the way, I read Metternich here. He's not a reliable correspondent off times. You mentioned that he writes, many years, later, he's correcting the record how to judge him in his first meeting with Napoleon, and what he made of him what he's deeply social figure. And is often fooled overs, one of the greatest diplomats full-time my problem with him. Is that I don't trust what he says, in his memoirs, particularly however, one of the areas way I think you can trust him is precisely the period that you've just mentioned the August. Nine eight hundred six period way he meets Napoleon and MAs. Napoleon understands him to be a great man. And this sizing each other up very much Mets, Nick, this Austrian diplomat. And of course Napoleon who pretty much is at the height of his palace. He sizes him up and he's reporting back to Vienna. And he's also looking at how he measures up against the kings. This is always a war against the kings, the coalition as a way of saying, Napoleon versus the kings does, metric make of him royalty. Does he think he's worthy? Or does he defy the general understanding of him as emperor in regard him as a pirate or pretender for the first four years? Mesic very much sees him as parts of pretend. In fact, a very good woods cheese. It isn't really until eighteen ten. When Mets Nick realizes that the only way that Australia can ever get peace in Europe is to actually treat Napoleon on the terms that Napoleon wants to be treated as a as an emperor as a Mona. Broil figue the, there's any hope of, of Australia getting what it needs. We go to war pretty quickly. But the reason is that Napoleon's put together the confederation of the Rhine that deprives Austria, and even Prussia of certainty of a buffer, if does give him a lot of extra troops. And one of the ways to read your book, is that we're watching Germany be knit together in these large pieces Prussia Austria. And this confederation of the Rhine, that's a that's, that's a product. What of Napoleon's ambition? How did he how did he construct the Rhine confederation will really? It comes from the death of the holy Roman empire, which has been around for a thousand years, it was created by Charlemagne in the eight hundred and by a six point to it. It's a Hoskin makes no political or economic commercial, or any other kind of sense whatsoever. And so in August. Six Napoleon abolished, quite simply abolish, state, and navy seem to take much nature Soviet even the Austrians who historically had controlled it for a thousand years, and the confederation of the Rhine radios, the is the organization that Napoleon puts in its place. Now, quickly, a couple of battles gain, a- an hour, and you are very carefully explication the battles and how Napoleon managed the field. This one is against Prussia earlier against Australia later against Russia Napoleon says, after the, the two battles are conjoined. This is October October of six, I've never seen men. So completely defeated had he defeated an old fashioned army, and the Prussians. Are they going to go through reformation the way? Russia does hugely. Yes, the Prussians really haven't changed much for thirty years since the days of the great that great king, who, who they all hoped back to. And of course, he would. Won many victories during the seven years war, but that was thirty years ago, and they had many of the same generals in charge of as you Brunswick being an example, thirty is later. Well, you can't do that, when you fighting somebody like Napoleon, and so it was a result, they appreciated that they need to, to reform themselves, not just military, not just that generals in the rest, but actually the entire society from top to bottom Hegel sees him a ride by Tober thirteenth, and he calls him a beautiful soul. I wonder if that's cursed philosophy of her since. Well, yes. I mean, hey, go. Was writing a book about the philosophy of the soul the time. And so he probably saw Napoleon in terms of wealthy was writing in the way rights is Dave, but nonetheless, nonetheless, he, he taught him as did many other great intellectuals today, he enters Berlin twenty-seven October fine. But the important part here is called the continental system. What is it because it's a way of making war. It's a way of making economic wall by trying to Great Britain out of European trade, and they're fool scraped Britain into trying to into negotiating peace and Britain of hasn't wanted any kind of peace, V is, and instead has been financing all of the coalitions against Napoleon Napoleon phys that the they're going to continue to do that. But thinks that because the British on a nation of soap keepers is he famously cooled them they would be able to be pushed into making peace. If. If they cut out of, of world trade his defeated the Prussians, but now he's going to take on the Russians. It takes some time for them to get organized and get cross all the way into your into Germany, but the battles their series of battles now in os seven we begin, oh, seven with the retaliation of the British to the continental system, Percival, I have spent the Percival becomes prime minister leader of the new government. He seems to have a an understanding of Napoleon that isn't quite rational. He sees him. What is the anti Christ? Yes. It's a psychological disorder, frankly. He sees as the anti Christ and has them for years rates, a pamphlet in which he crazy him with some sort of creature from the book of revelations. And frankly, this is this is not how normal British politicians behave the oath seven is going to be battles with the Russians and series of. Victories for Napoleon through seven were rising to his moment when he's in supreme control of the continent at the same time, they're all these things going on around him is assigning, his family to various crowns, royals royalties running them around. He's trying to promote them. He's, he's almost too many Corsican, who cares for his family, like a good putter familias, and he's the emperor who is indifferent to the passions of, of the European families that he's crashing through. So let's crash through eylau and freed land. I did not know both those battles. I Lau in February freed land in June of eighteen o seven. He's magnificent on the field against the Russians. Are they an old fashioned army as well? Yes, they're very old fashioned me. But again while the light, the Prussians, they're about to learn how to change into into adapts the, the two battlefields, there in the, the Russian Clave of Kaliningrad, which is surrounded by modern day Poland, and they're wonderful battlefield, you can see the. Frequent, you climb up the top of this, this rather wonderful church tower, and you can see the entire battlefield from the point of view of the Russian the Bennigsen, and it's a complete death trap. There's an late gang round the back of the Russian positions. And when you climb up today you can see everything that he saw. And it's stunning the Couldn't Spell that he's all was being led to dissolve stuff. Senators present at Friedland. So is Lana pslon and Murat and Soule and VO. He's got some of his greatest marshalls all of them that and he leads them in one of the other with the cool system, which he perfected works at the battle of Friedland, the calls, he was able to place each of his cools. Exactly way. He needed them to be. And so he won, I would say of the ousted, it's the second greatest battle of his career, but he engaged Russia. And there in lies the mystery ahead of us. I the meeting with the saw that's as Alexandra twenty nine years old. I believe at this point. And he meets Alexander though. The Prussian king is available as well. He sits them side. They meet on a raft in a river. It's an it's an operatic scene. Why? Yes. Well, because the re review of wills the boulder between Poland and Russia, neither of them wanted to meet on the other side, because they didn't want to give the other one precedence. So they had this Ralph really tinted to both sides, the met on off in the middle of the of the river, but it's vase metal Huckleberry Finn kind of Ralph. It's a very grand Ralph that has been built up has been has been filled with silks in gorgeous carapaces and say was a result. It's something pretty impressive. They pledge attornal love to each other Alexander and Polian. I didn't believe word of it. I'm. Surprised that they did at the time. It's a famous scene because of course, Tolstoy brings it to us again. And again and at this moment, you'd have to say that our his opinion Polian is peculiar. He is Napoleon as an upstart. How does the Sar has command of all of Russia and the respect of Prussia, Austrian, Great Britain? So why does he treat him as a co Inc? Will, I think you have the Sar say the first thing I hate the English? That's how he opens the comfort. That's the way they make friends is, is absurd anglophobia. I mean, I would say it said, wouldn't I because I've English myself, but nonetheless, aggressive anglophobia is the way the. Aw. Basically seduces Napoleon whilst Napoleon feels that he seducing, it's a fascinating psychosexual fake because they both they wind up just loving each other. Right. And they will later wind up destroying tens of thousands of human beings. It's incredible these two men together sitting there and you can hear all the dying around them in the future. I'm speaking with Andrew Roberts. The book is napoleone alive, Napoleon, the great. And when we come back a moment for the Iberian peninsula, because of a man named Wellington, and then onto more war, and Polian to Moscow, I'm John bachelor. This is the John Batchelor show. You're listening to John bachelor. K GO. National debt is now twenty two trillion dollars could accelerate even faster due to government programs for America's aging population, according to the nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office annual coats, the United States director of national intelligence that the rapid expansion of government debt is a dire threat to economic and national security for US debt is at an all time record and continues to grow at unprecedented rate in times of economic uncertainty. We turn to go. We're sandstorm."
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