Today is Hiroshima Day. On 6th August 1945, a nuclear bomb was dropped on an inhabited city as an act of war for the first time in human history.
On 6th August 1914, Austria-Hungary declared war on Russia, and Serbia declared war on Germany.
The Royal Serbian Ministry for Foreign Affairs wrote to the German legation at Niš:
The Royal Serbian Ministry for Foreign Affairs has the honour to inform the Imperial Legation that, in view of the state of war which now exists between Serbia and Austria-Hungary, and of that between Russia and Germany, the ally of Austria-Hungary, the Royal Serbian Government, in view of the solidarity of her interests with Russia and her allies, considers the mission of Baron Gieslingen, the Imperial German Minister Plenipotentiary and Envoy Extraordinary, to be at an end. The Royal Serbian Government requests His Excellency to leave Serbian territory with the staff of the Legations. The necessary passports are enclosed herewith.
In the House of Commons on 20th July, the Conservative MP for Plymouth, Shirley Benn, asked the Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs, “whether the Servians are now advancing upon Elbasan“?
The Under-Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs, Sir Francis Dyke Acland, Liberal MP for Camborne, replied:
A report has reached me that they have crossed the Albanian frontier, but I have no confirmation of it.
Alfred Dumaine, the French Ambassador at Vienna, wrote to René Viviani, the French Prime Minister and Minister for Foreign Affairs, on 19th July 1914:
The Chancellor of the Consulate, who has sent me his half-yearly report, in which he sums up the various economic facts which have been the subject of his study since the beginning of the year, has added a section containing political information emanating from a trustworthy source.
I asked him briefly to sum up the information which he has obtained regarding the impending presentation of the Austrian note to Servia, which the papers have for some days been persistently announcing.
You will find the text of this memorandum interesting on account of the accurate information which it contains.
On 18th July 2014, Dr. M. Spalaikovitch, the Serbian Minister at St Petersburg, telegraphed to: Nikola Pašić, Serbian Prime Minister and Minister for Foreign Affairs (presumably, in response to the Prime Minister’s long telegram to all the legations abroad on 14th July):
I have spoken to the Assistant Minister for Foreign Affairs on the subject of the provocative attitude of the Korrespondenzbureau and the Vienna press.
M. Sazonof told me a few days ago that he wondered why the Austrian Government were doing nothing to put a stop to the futile agitation on the part of the press in Vienna which, after all, frightened nobody, and was only doing harm to Austria herself.
On 18th July 1914, the U.S. Congress formed the Aviation Section, U.S. Signal Corps, giving official status to aircraft within the U.S. Army for the first time.
On Friday 17th July 1914, M. M. S. Boskovitch, the Serbian Minister at London, telegraphed to Nikola Pašić, Serbian Prime Minister and Minister for Foreign Affairs:
The Austrian Embassy is making very great efforts to win over the English press against us, and to induce it to favour the idea that Austria must give a good lesson to Serbia. The Embassy is submitting to the news editors cuttings from our newspapers as a proof of the views expressed in our press. The situation may become more acute during the next few weeks. No reliance should be placed in the ostensibly peaceable statements of Austro-Hungarian official circles, as the way is being prepared for diplomatic pressure upon Serbia, which may develop into an armed attack. It is probable that as soon as Austria-Hungary has taken action at Belgrade she will change her attitude and will seek to humiliate Serbia.
On Thursday 16th July 1914, Dr. M. Yovanovitch, Serbian Chargé d’Affaires at Berlin, telegraphed to Nikola Pašić, Serbian Prime Minister and Minister for Foreign Affairs:
The Secretary of State has informed me that the reports of the German Minister at Belgrade point to the existence of a Great Serbian propaganda, which should be energetically suppressed by the [Serbian] Government in the interest of good relations with Austria-Hungary.
M. Yov. M. Yovanovitch, the Serbian Minister at Vienna, wrote three letters to Nikola Pašić, the Prime Minister of Serbia and Minister for Foreign Affairs from Vienna on 15th July 1914.
The most important question for us is, what, if any, are the intentions of the Austro-Hungarian Government as regards the Serajevo outrage. Until now I have been unable to find this out, and my other colleagues are in a similar position. The word has now been passed round here not to tell anybody anything.
On Tuesday 14th July Dr. M. Yovanovitch, the Serbian Chargé d’Affaires at Berlin, telegraphed to Nikola Pašić, the Prime Minister of Serbia and Minister for Foreign Affairs:
The Secretary of State has told me that he could not understand the provocative attitude of the Serbian press and the attacks made by it against Austria-Hungary, who, as a Great Power, could not tolerate such proceedings.
In 1914, today was Miroslav Krleža’s 21st birthday. He was born in Zagreb, at that time part of the Austro-Hungarian empire, and had been educated for a career as an officer in Pécs and then at the Ludoviceum military academy in Budapest. In 1912, he had defected to Serbia, with a view to enrolling in the Serbian army, but he had been turned away as a suspected spy. On his return to Austro-Hungary, he was demoted in their army and served on the Eastern Front as a common soldier throughout the war. His career as a writer in his native language, Croatian, was to win him both the Herder Prize and the Laureate of the International Botev Prize.
In debate in the House of Commons on Tuesday 7th July, Captain Walter Faber was asking questions about army recruitment of the Liberal Secretary of State for War, H. H. Asquith, who was also the Prime Minister. The questions were answered by the Under-Secretary of State for War, Harold Tennant, MP for Berwickshire.
Because the Archduke Franz Ferdinand and Sophie, Duchess of Hohenberg, had been married morganatically – it was forbidden for Habsburg heir to marry anyone who was not a member of one of the reigning families of Europe – Ferdinand had known that his wife could not be buried with him in the Imperial Crypt in Vienna. He had built a family tomb at his private residence, Schloss Artstetten near the Danube, so that they could be buried together. The last funeral and internment took place on Saturday 4th July: their three children were present.