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12

DIPLOMACY AND THE WAR

This Congress did not create any opposition between Serbia and Austria-Hungary, but on the contrary, by increasing the power of Austria-Hungary in the vicinity of Serbia, it protected Serbian interests simultaneously. Serbia drew the natural deduction from the new situation; her policy assumed a new direction, and instead of the old pro-Russian policy, an Austro-Hungarian policy was pursued. The Treaty of Berlin was by no means the cause of that difference, which came into existence subsequently between us and Serbia, but quite on the contrary, we approached more closely to our neighbours. The Serbs felt that our will was to predominate in the Balkans, and therefore they accommodated themselves accordingly.

Unfortunately, our enemy spread abroad, as well as believed, that we wished to annex not only Bosnia and Herzegovina, but also Albania and Macedonia, and that Salonika was the real aim of our policy. Not a word of this is true. There was no trace of the conqueror's ambition in Andrassy. He wished to secure for us only economic relations and political influence, and it was for this reason that he attached so much weight to his desire to prevent Serbia and Montenegro from dividing between them the Sandshak Novibazar, which would cut us off from the Southern Balkans and surround us by a South-Slavonic Empire. There was no intention of endangering those Balkan States that were striving towards an independent and peaceable existence. The leading principle of Andrassy's policy was that the Monarchy should use its powers for the