Battle of Genola, 4 November 1799

Battle of Genola, 4 November 1799

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Battle of Genola, 4 November 1799

The battle of Genola (4 November 1799) was a final major French defeat in Italy in 1799 which forced them to pull back into the Alps and Apennines, and left the Austrians in command of the northern Italian plains. After the disasters earlier in the year General Championnet had been appointed to command the Army of Italy and his own Army of the Alps, taking commanding during September. He then made a series of small-scale attacks that were repulsed by the Austrians, now under Melas, each made either to bring the two parts of his armies closer together or to prevent the Austrians from threatening Cuneo, the last major French stronghold on the northern Italian plains.

After these small scale attacks Championnet decided to concentrate his troops and launch a general offensive, hoping to fight a decisive battle before the winter set in. Melas quickly realised what was going on, and withdrew from some of his most advanced positions, abandoning Mondovi, and by 3 November was concentrated between Fossano and Marene, close to the Stura River.

By the evening of 3 November Melas was ready to launch a counterattack. His divisions were well concentrated, while one of the French divisions (Duhesme's) wouldn't join the main army until late on 4 November at best. The battle was thus a rare example of one in which both sides intended to attack.

Both sides prepared to attack on 4 November. Championnet's plan effectively split his army in three. Grenier was to attack east from Savigliano towards Marene, travelling on two roads. Victor was to attack Fossano, six miles to the south. Duhesme started the day at Saluzzo, eight miles to the west of Savigliano, and was ordered to follow Grenier towards Marenne.

Melas made rather better use of his troops. Ott, on the Austrian right, was ordered to advance west from Marene towards Savigliano. In the centre Mitrowsky was ordered to advance north-west from San Lorenzo, also towards Savigliano. Elnitz, with the Austrian left, was ordered to move north-west towards Genola, four miles to the south of Savigliano. Finally Gottesheim, with one brigade and the garrison of Fossano was to make two false attacks, south-west towards Maddalene and Murazzo. In a reversal of the normal pattern during Napoleon's early campaigns in Italy the Austrian commander was concentrating his strength one point, while the French were dispersing across a wider area.

The first clash came early in the morning, when Ott and Grenier ran into each other close to Marene. The fighting lasted for two hours, with each side attempting to turn the other, but then Mitrowsky arrived with the Austrian centre, and Grenier was forced to retreat by superior numbers. Some of Grenier's men retreated west towards Savigliano, and others south-west to Genola. Ott pursued Grenier to the south-west, towards villages records in early French sources as Valdignasco and Valdiggio, possibly the modern Vottignasco and Levaldigi, both to the south-west of Genola, while Mitrowsky went to help Elnitz between Fossano and Genola.

On the French right Victor clashed with Elnitz under the guns of Fossano. The Austrians focused their efforts on taking Genola, which they saw as the key to the position, while Gottesheim attempted to outflank Victor. Elnitz was repulsed several times at Genola, while Gottesheim was never really able to get out of Fossano.

The stalemate around Genola was broken when Mitrowsky arrived from the Austrian right. Victor's left was now exposed as Grenier retreated. Realising the danger Championnet ordered Victor to retreat back to Murazzo, while the French centre and left formed at Levaldigi. This new line was turned when Ott approached Vottignasco, on the French left, and the French retreated again, to a new line at Centalio. This too was soon broke, and at the end of the day the French were sheltering under the walls of Cuneo. The new Austrian line had its left at Murazzo facing Victor, its centre at Centallo and its right at Villafalletto.

On 5 November Melas decided to attack again in an attempt to force the French back past Cuneo. Ott attacked the French position at Runchi, and forced the French to retreat past Cuneo to an entrenched camp at Madona-del-Olmo. This left a column isolated at Murazzo, part of which was forced to surrender, while others drowned while attempting to cross the River Stura.

This ended the fighting. When Melas advanced again on 6 November the French retreated to Borgo San Dalmazzo, leaving Cuneo exposed to attack. The Austrians pursued. Latterman was sent up the Maira valley, and Ott along the Granna, while Elnitz and Gottesheim advance up both banks of the Stura and cleared the last French positions around Cuneo.

Championnet lost between 6,500 and 8,000 men in the battle, while Austrian losses were only 2,000. Melas was free to attack Cuneo, which surrendered on 4 December, eliminating the last French presence on the northern Italian plains.

After the battle Championnet split his force in two. Grenier's division remained at Borgo San Dalmazzo, only five miles to the south-west of Cuneo, while Championnet and the main army moved east to Mondovi, and took up a position on the heights above the River Ellero, which flows out of the Apennines towards Mondovi. On 13 November Melas moved to attack this position, but the French retreated without a fight. On the following day Championnet evacuated Mondovi and retreated south to Ormea, half way to the coast. His new headquarters was at Sospel, on the French side of the modern border and guarding the road to Nice. The French were now back where they had been before Napoleon's original conquests in Italy, holding a narrow coastal strip up to Genoa. The Austrians were free to besiege Cuneo, which fell in early December.

Napoleonic Home Page | Books on the Napoleonic Wars | Subject Index: Napoleonic Wars

After the Peace of Campoformio (1797), France had continued to expand it had established control, as well as satellite republics modelled after the French Republic, in Switzerland and the territory of the Papal State (the pope himself being abducted to France). Austria, Russia, the Ottoman Empire, Portugal, and Naples formed a coalition against France, which was joined by Britain on June 22nd 1799. Napoleon Bonaparte, at that time, was stuck with his army in Egypt. The British fleet, under Lord Nelson, had destroyed the French fleet at Abukir, thus cutting off Napoleon's communication with France.

In Italy and Mediterranean Sea

A Russian fleet occupied the Ionian islands except Corfu, to which the French held on. A Neapolitan army took Rome, but was expelled again soon after. Naples mutinied against the Austrian commander of her own army the commander surrendered himself to the French, who took Naples, establishing the Pathenopean Republic. This satellite republic, however, was very short-lived, as the French troops were needed in the north and rebels under Cardinal Ruffo di Calabria, supported by the British Navy under Admiral Nelson, expelled the Republicans and the French.

In Northern Italy, the main theatre of operation, the French faced Austrian and Russian forces, the latter commanded by Alexander Suvorov. The coalition forces gained victories at Magnano (April 5th 1799) and Cassano (April 25th-27th 1799). They took Milan and Torino, defeated the French at the Trebbia (June 17-20), and at Novi (August 15th 1799). However French General Massena defeated a Russian force near Zürich (Sept. 26th-27th 1799) and reoccupied Switzerland for France. Czar Paul I. then signed a peace treaty.

The Holland Campaign

A British-Russian force landed unopposed, as the Batavian Navy remained inactive - the Dutch sailors refused to fight against an orange flag (Russia's Czarist flag was orange with a black diagonal cross over it Prince William of Orange supported the Allies). Yet poor coordination and logistics resulted in their defeat at Bergen aan Zee and Castricum (October 6th 1799). When the coalition force failed in achieving its prime objective - seizing the Dutch fleet - the campaign was aborted in the Convention of Alkmaar (October 18th 1799>, the withdrawal of the Anglo-Russian force was agreed upon.

Napoleon, without his army, returned to France and staged a coup d'etat on November 9th/10th 1799. Then he changed the French strategy, the war being simplified by Russia not only having withdrawn from the coalition, but an Anglo-Russian rift developing.

Final considerations

The Allies lacked a common strategy. Britain seemed intent on using the Coalition Wars to eliminate the fleets of potential rivals on the world's oceans Austria and Russia wanted to crush the revolutionary armies instead. British action caused the Russians to withdraw from the coalition. French political leadership had learned from the mistakes of the 1st Coalition War its generals were only rarely replaced and none ended up under the guillotine.

In 1800, because of the fragility of the coalition, France now clearly established her hegemony over western central Europe (Italy, Switzerland, western Germany, the Netherlands), gaining even Spain as an ally. Russia, now suspicious of British aims, attempted to establish a Baltic alliance (with Prussia, Denmark) which provoked the British to attack Copenhagen (1801) for the time being the emergence of another anti-French alliance was rather unlikely. The Anglo-French rivalry continued, Britain controlling the seas, France the land.

“Activeness is the most important of all attributes of the military …
Hurry, Your Excellency! Money is dear
human life still dearer, but time’s dearest of all.”

Situation of the Coalition’s armies (January - February 1799) in Europe

Tyrol’s Armée FML Bellegarde

Imperial russian Corps GdI A. G. Rozemberg

Imperial russian Corps LGen I. I. Hermann

Imperial russian Corps GdK F. I. Nummsen

Imperial russian Corps Prince L.X. de Condé

Russia was able to organize 4 other reserve armies

Armée de Batavie Gen. Brune

Armée de Mayence Gen. Bernadotte

Armée du Danube Gen. Jourdan

Armée d’Helvetie Gen. Massena

Armée d’Italie Gen. Scherér

Armée de Naples Gen. MacDonald

Source: table in T. Sheviakov, V. Dzuis “Italianski I Shveizarski Pachody Suvarova 1799”, Moskow 2002 ed. Astrel AST.

Introducing the Revolutionary Wars Orders of Battle

The military art knew an important improvement with the French Revolution wars. After Révolution had allowed France to reorganize the army on principles of Egalité, concurring in a mutual sharing of military honours and services also with whom was not born noble, the strategy and the tactics evolved, almost logically, in a parallel way with the new thought and the new leaderships, military Officers enclosed, redesigning the ways to fight of XVIII century. Someone, indeed, was very slow to modernize his military institutions. Austria, as an example, succeeded only in few occasions to disengage from the Maria-Theresia’s military model Napoleon in person recognized that Vienna was always in delay of a year, an army and. an idea therefore it was condemned to lose. In the Revolutionary decade, however, the border between the old way to fight and the new was still much thin one.

In the "Enlightened Century", monarchs mobilized theei Armies splitting them (by divisions) between the Lieutenants to whom the campaign orders were entrusted. However the fundamental unit of that period was the Regiment, the personal property, organized, maintained and paid by its Colonel (the Owner). Not so rare were the possible occurrences when a regiment turned its “back” to the battlefield because its Colonel did not appreciate orders that could put in danger his subordinates. To resolve the problem someone tried to create intermediate units between divisions and regiments, by grouping two or more regiments, that could limit the free initiative of colonels and that could better extend the chain of command to the advanced units: so born the Brigades. The system evolution showed also bizarre episodes. One could have been witness of the proliferation of so many brigades, that often ended in brigades formed only by a single regiment, of course commanded by the same colonel chief of the barely present single regiment. The French Revolution also wanted strongly to render visible symbols of a rupture with the past, as happened with the symbolic change of common words, from My Gentleman (Monsieur) that became Citoyen (Citizen), to the numeration of years and the change of the calendar months along with the days of the week. Also the Armée was been involved in the terminologies reform, even if the result was more ideological that practical.

With the practical impossibility to quickly reorganize all military schools of war and their courses, arrived only the change of the military terminology. The regiment, detested symbol of the colonel’s feudal power, became Half-brigade (Demi brigade) and the colonel simply was a Chief (Chef-de-brigade). In effects, considering the terminology, someone could think that, having created the half-brigades, the French wanted to give back new dignity to the unit called brigade however this did not happen. The greatest French military unit remained the Armée (which deserved all needed geographic variant names suggested by the conflict situation), but the fundamental manoeuvre unit was the army (sub)division, equipped with all logistic services and all the materials useful to turn it into an independent group during operations. The division had its General Staff, its support branches (Sappers, Bridging units, Artillery, something similar to a Medical service, Supplies, etc). The division was under command of a Général-de-division (he could, during emergencies, have a provisional nomination that is "à titre provisoire", a temporary assignment, "in evaluation"). The Division staff had Quartermasters (paying and administration) adjudants-généraux, and a reserved squad of couriers, aides-de-camp, body guards and military- civil employed personnel.

The denomination of the Divisions could have been fixed (and obviously numerical i.e. 2e division of the X army) or could have assumed temporary names from the particular geographic situations (Division du Tyrol) or from tactic deployments (Division de droit, right wing Division of avantgarde - vanguard). Often they took directly the name of the general commander (Division Masséna etc). The division General, before the battle (campaign), joined up his Staff in the war council, distributed the subordinate commands assigning battalions and demi-brigades, gave dispositions for cavalry and artillery and often all remained in a merely verbal form. It is apparent that: [i]

1. the Brigades were volatile military entities, they possessed only a tactical dimension and they were able to change from different formations and commanders (also one for every day of a battle)..

2. Only after the historical events, could have been written summary tables - today commonly (but incorrectly) defined Orders of battle and that it would be more appropriate to call lists of armed forces or army lists. Commonly they were made by the same Général-de-division in his Army Report or by some concerned Officer, reporter of the event.

The Army Lists documentation, that is commonly possible to consult in national archives, can roughly be synthesized in two categories: the situations and the reports. The first (Situations) are often detailed documents that list the presences of the effectives, the sanitary state and the pay situation of a day (month for a campaign). They tell which and how many units were ready to the fight or had stood on the battlefield, but they never bring back the chain of command (in every case even if the chain is listed is not totally sure that chain of command was alike during the clash with the enemy). According to the other kind of documents (Report, Précis etc.), they were produced after the event and often are more reliable revealing details (but the in-depth description also depended on the descriptive ability of the author). In these last relations could appear the true Army Lists and also the orders of battle, not a simple inventory of men and units but the true Ordre de Bataille listing the formations and how they deployed on field.

Also in this case, however, an historical truth, difficult to search, could not be reached. Even if the battle Report referred the Chain of commands, it often omitted to delineate some important details about the cited demi-brigade:

A - the grenadiers (or chasseurs) companies had been removed, merged in an independent battalion under the command of another brigadier

B - all three of its battalions were not in the same brigade. Often they were one or two in a brigade, while the third (or the other two) was in reserve under another general.

Finally, considering that Situations were produced on several occasions at regular intervals, while after-battle Reports were only single pieces (or more than one but all describing the same event) evident appear the worries that investigators and historians met (and still they meet) on the reconstruction about who was in the battle and how many were those really participating. Even "consecrated fathers" of military history, Clausewitz and Jomini, err in summing up the presences. While passing the years, tactical conditions of chain of the command changed continually as France proceeded with its Empire and improved the archival documentations.

The analysis of the Austrian sources is different because, along many years, several publications described, often in detail, what had happened on the battlefields. The same imperial tactical organization, remarkably more rigid and schematic than the French one, facilitated the reconstruction of the army lists. The Austrians used the formations of Columns (Kolonnen) which followed the roads pattern of the age to manoeuvre. These columns would differed in size and sometimes they were more like divisions, for the force deployed, than brigades. They always retained the same vertical system: at the head were one or two light guns together with an avantguard of elite troops or scouts (they could not be defined light infantry, as by the French, because they did not perform specialized training), one cavalry squadron for the linkage and the protection of the column flanks, the mass of the column (Hauptgruppe) with the other cavalry squadrons and the heavy batteries of reserve artillery. The brigades (Feldbrigaden) were mixed groups of battalions led by a brigadier (Generalmajor) not always performing as that rank had required (few promotions by merits or good service, more were granted in accordance with the genealogic tree to the lesser nobility even with support of some robust money transfer or political blessing). In fact sometimes it happened that the columns in which were inserted the brigades were led by Officers of a rank inferior to whom led the Brigade. The possible occurrence of provisional commands was normal in case of physical illness (mental too) of the superior officers, entrusting the command to Colonels (Oberst or Obristen) commanders of a regiment and sometimes also to lieutenants colonels.

The Army Lists, in this research work, therefore, are the sum of a significant mass of cross matches among different sources, some of the kind of quoted documents, publications, biographies, burial-writings and awards. All the uncertain data have been marked with question marks.

[1] The rule, of course, had its greatest exception in Bonaparte. Napoleon almost always was tempted to override chains of command, sometimes directly distributing the charges and brigade commands. See for example…:

Quartier général, Lesegno, 3 floréal an IV (22 avril 1796)

Le général Masséna partira avec sa division, son artillerie et sa cavalerie, demain, à six heures du matin, pour prendre position le long de la rivière du Pesio, appuyant sa droite sur le Tanaro, et prolongeant sa gauche autant que sa ligne pourra s’étendre. Il se mettra en bataille sur deux lignes en observant la distance nécessaire, de manière que l’espace puisse servir à former en colonne serrée la moitié de sa division. Ses troupes à cheval seront à sa gauche. Il aura une avant-garde d’infanterie légère et de cavalerie qui partira une demi-heure avant, et qui se portera sur Carrù dès l’instant qu’il aura éclairé sa gauche, et que le reste de sa division le suivra à une demi-heure de distance. Il restera dans cette position et dans cet ordre de bataille.

Battle of Genola, 4 November 1799 - History

The thirteen colonies in the America's had been at war with Britain for around a year when the Second Continental Congress decided it was time for the colonies to officially declare their independence. This meant that they were breaking away from British rule. They would no longer be a part of the British Empire and would fight for their freedom.

Declaration of Independence by John Trumbull

Who wrote the Declaration of Independence?

On June 11, 1776 the Continental Congress appointed five leaders, called the Committee of Five, to write a document explaining why they were declaring their independence. The five members were Benjamin Franklin, John Adams, Robert Livingston, Roger Sherman, and Thomas Jefferson. The members decided that Thomas Jefferson should write the first draft.

Thomas Jefferson wrote the first draft over the next few weeks and, after some changes made by the rest of the committee, they presented it to Congress on June 28, 1776.

Not everyone agreed at first on declaring independence. Some wanted to wait until the colonies had secured stronger alliances with foreign countries. In the first round of voting South Carolina and Pennsylvania voted "no" while New York and Delaware chose not to vote. The Congress wanted the vote to be unanimous, so they continued to discuss the issues. The next day, July 2nd, South Carolina and Pennsylvania reversed their votes. Delaware decided to vote "yes" as well. This meant that the agreement to declare independence passed with 12 yes votes and 1 abstention (meaning New York chose not to vote).

On July 4, 1776 the Congress officially adopted the final version of the Declaration of Independence. This day is still celebrated in the United States as Independence Day.

After the signing, the document was sent to a printer to make copies. Copies were sent to all the colonies where the declaration was read aloud in public and published in newspapers. A copy was also sent to the British government.

The Declaration of Independence did more than just say the colonies wanted their freedom. It explained why they wanted their freedom. It listed all the bad things that the king had done to the colonies and that the colonies had rights which they felt they should fight for.

Perhaps one of the most famous statements in the history of the United States is in the Declaration of Independence:

"We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness."

Writing the Declaration of Independence, 1776
by Jean Leon Gerome Ferris
Thomas Jefferson (right), Benjamin Franklin (left),
and John Adams (center)


The French offensive relied on coordinated attacks by the Army of the Danube, the Army of Mayence, and the Army of the North. [1]

Southwestern Germany

On 1 March 1799, the Army of Observation, in an order of battle of approximately 30,000   men in four divisions, crossed the Rhine at Kehl and Basel. The following day, the it was renamed the Army of the Danube. [2]

The French (blue) and Austrian (red) armies converged on Ostrach in March 1799.

Under command of Jourdan, the army advanced in four columns through the Black Forest. First Division, the right wing, assembled at Hüningen, crossed at Basel and advanced eastward along the north shore of the Rhine toward Lake Constance. [3] The Advanced Guard crossed at Kehl, and Vandamme led it north-east through the mountains via Freudenstadt. This column eventually became the left flank. It was followed across the Rhine, also at Kehl, by the II. Division. The Third Division and the Reserve also crossed at Kehl, and then divided into two columns, III. Division traveling through the Black Forest via Oberkirch, and the Reserve, with most of the artillery and horse, by the valley at Freiburg im Breisgau, where they would find more forage, and then over the mountains past the Titisee to Löffingen and Hüfingen. [4]

The major part of the imperial army, under command of the Archduke Charles', had wintered immediately east of the Lech, which Jourdan knew, because he had sent agents into Germany with instructions to identify the location and strength of his enemy. This was less than 64 kilometres (40   mi) distant any passage over the Lech was facilitated by available bridges, both of permanent construction and temporary pontoons and a traverse through friendly territory. [5]

In March 1799, the Army of the Danube engaged in two major battles, both in the southwestern German theater. At the intensely fought Battle of Ostrach, 21𔃀 March 1799, the first battle of the War of the Second Coalition, Austrian forces, under the command of Archduke Charles, defeated Jourdan's Army of the Danube. The French suffered significant losses and were forced to retreat from the region, taking up new positions to the west at Messkirch (Mößkirch, Meßkirch), and then at Stockach and Engen. At the second battle, in Stockach, on 25 March 1799, the Austrian army achieved a decisive victory over the French forces, and again pushed the French army west. Jourdan instructed his generals to take up positions in the Black Forest, and he himself established a base at Hornberg. From there, General Jourdan relegated command of the army to his chief of staff, Jean Augustin Ernouf, and traveled to Paris to ask for more and better troops and, ultimately, to request a medical leave. [6]

The Army was reorganized, and a portion placed under the command of André Masséna and merged with the Army of Helvetia. Following the reorganization and change in command, the Army participated in several skirmishes and actions on the eastern part of the Swiss Plateau, including the Battle of Winterthur. After this action, three forces of the imperial army united north of Zürich, completing a partial encirclement of Masséna's combined Army of the Danube and Army of Switzerland. A few days later, at the First Battle of Zurich, Masséna was forced west, across the Limmat. In late summer, 1799, Charles was ordered to support imperial activities in the middle Rhineland he withdrew north across the Rhine, and marched toward Mannheim, leaving Zürich and northern Switzerland in the hands of the inexperienced Alexander Korsakov and 25,000 Russian troops. Although the highly capable Friedrich Freiherr von Hotze remained in support, his 15,000 men were not able to counter Korsakov's poor defensive arrangements. Three weeks later, at the Second Battle of Zurich, the Russian force was annihilated, and Hotze was killed south of Zürich. This left Masséna in control of northern Switzerland, and closed forced Suvorov into an arduous three-week march into the Vorarlberg, where his troops arrived, starving and exhausted, in mid-October. [7]

Napoleon takes Power in France

Napoleon Bonaparte took power in France on November 9th/10th 1799.

The coup of 18/19 Brumaire in the Year VIII of the republican calendar is generally taken to mark the end of the French Revolution and the beginning of Napoleon Bonaparte's dictatorship. The Corsican had returned from Egypt on October 9th. His success in evading the British confirmed the growing belief in Napoleon's 'star'. In Paris he had a furious row with his wife, Josephine, who had been enjoying a love-affair in his absence, but they made up, and he went about with studious modesty while speculation about his intentions grew feverish.

The regime which Bonaparte was about to bring down was the Directory, a committee of five, which had been set up in 1795 after the fall of Robespierre. The Directors were Paul Barras, a former lover of Josephine Bonaparte and a byword for cynicism and corruption the Abbé Sieyès, an industrious political theorist a general named Moulin Roger Ducos, a protégé of Barras and a lawyer called Gohier.

The government was bankrupt, while inflation, taxation and unemployment were soaring. The regime had lost control in much of the country, and there was virtual civil war in some areas. There were fears of both a Jacobin resurgence and a royalist restoration, and Barras was rumoured to be planning to sell the country back to the Bourbons.

On October 23rd, the first day of Brumaire, Napoleon's elder brother, Lucien Bonaparte, was elected president of the Council of Five Hundred, one of the two assemblies set up under the 1795 constitution. The other was the Council of Elders, with 250 members. Inside the Directory itself, Sieyès was determined to introduce a new system. He and Napoleon agreed to work together. Sieyès totally underestimated the younger man in imagining that Bonaparte would tamely serve his purposes. Talleyrand, the former and future foreign minister, and the police chief Joseph Fouché were both involved in the coup. The banker Jean-Pierre Collot put up the money.

Action began when Sieyès announced the discovery of a Jacobin plot. The two assemblies, alarmed, moved from central Paris and the dreaded Parisian mob to the former Royal palace at Saint-Cloud. To ensure their safety they put General Bonaparte in command of all troops in the capital and he moved 6,000 men into place around the palace under his future Cavalry commander Joachim Murat. Barras resigned and Talleyrand pocketed the two million francs he had been given to bribe him if required. Sieyès and Ducos also resigned and Moulin and Gohier were put under house arrest.

The Directory was dead and the plotters' plan was that next day, November 10th, the assemblies should put a new executive in place, but the deputies irritatingly argued until Napoleon lost patience. He stumped in to the hall of the Elders and made a speech defending himself against charges of being a Caesar or a Cromwell. Making little impact, he marched angrily into the Orangery, where the Five Hundred were in session. In fury at this intrusion, some of them pummelled him, bawling 'Outlaw!', 'Down with him!', and 'Kill, kill!' Shaken and bleeding from a scratched face, the general retreated. It was, he afterwards admitted, one of the few occasions in his life when his nerve failed him.

The conspiracy was saved by Lucien Bonaparte, who came out and addressed the soldiers guarding the assembly. He told them that some deputies, probably in the pay of perfidious Albion, had terrorised the majority and tried to assassinate the general. Putting his sword dramatically against his brother's breast, Lucien swore to kill him if he ever tried to destroy French freedom. The guards, suitably impressed and not anxious to antagonise Murat's men outside the palace, advanced to clear the Orangery. The deputies left in some haste, some by jumping from windows. A few hours later Lucien scoured the locality for a compliant remnant of the two assemblies -- some deputies were found still hiding beneath bushes in the park -- who obediently appointed three Consuls to run the government while a new constitution was prepared. The Consuls were Sieyés, Ducos, and Napoleon. They agreed to preside in turn, but there was little doubt whose hands now held power.

On December 13th the new constitution was formally proclaimed, with Napoleon as First Consul with full executive powers. Five years later he would be Emperor of the French.

A Battle of Two Pennsylvania Counties

During his six full terms representing Delaware in the U.S. Senate, Joe Biden, the presumptive Democratic presidential nominee, was often regarded as Pennsylvania&rsquos third U.S. senator. A native son of the Keystone State, Biden spent his early childhood in Scranton. That background, conventional wisdom holds, makes him a formidable candidate in Pennsylvania against President Trump, who carried the state by less than one percentage point in 2016.

Scranton, however, is a poor gauge of Pennsylvania&rsquos electoral mood. Scrantonians maintain a tribal allegiance to the Democratic Party, but their city&rsquos insular politics no longer reflect other parts of Lackawanna County or even the surrounding region. Northeastern Pennsylvania increasingly trends Republican. Its working-class voters -- especially in populous Luzerne County, immediately south of Scranton -- ensured Trump&rsquos state victory in 2016. They no longer believe that Democrats represent their social and economic interests .

In addition to reliably blue Philadelphia, Biden&rsquos Pennsylvania base is now Chester County, just minutes from his residence across the state border in suburban Wilmington. Pennsylvania&rsquos wealthiest county could play an outsized role in the 2020 election, as Luzerne did in 2016, when that county accounted for almost 60% of Trump&rsquos winning margin.

Biden is depending on the suburban Philadelphia county to cut into Trump&rsquos northeastern advantage. It&rsquos a battle of voting margins: Chester County&rsquos affluent suburbanites, who detest Trump, versus Luzerne County&rsquos blue-collar voters, who are repelled by the Democratic Party&rsquos leftward direction. Chester County, which favored Hillary Clinton in 2016, illustrates the Trump era&rsquos suburban revolt. Once a GOP stronghold, the county is populated with aging ex-Republicans and young professional Democrats who believe in the virtues of their political resistance and have voted accordingly.

Consider recent election cycles. In 2017, Democrats won four county-level offices for the first time since 1799 . In the 2018 midterms, Rep. Chrissy Houlahan became the first Democrat to represent the county in Congress since 1855 . In 2019, Democrats took control of county governance for the first time ever. Finally, in another milestone this May, Democrats surpassed Republicans in county voter registration. As a recent New York Times analysis of Federal Election Commission data showed, in the second quarter of 2020 numerous county ZIP codes served as a major state-level source of individual donors for Biden&rsquos campaign.

Chester County&rsquos political transformation was an inevitable consequence of demography. By the late 1980s, suburban sprawl and rapid population growth began to erase the area&rsquos agricultural, conservative past. Even in 1990, when the GOP held a 2-1 county majority, the Philadelphia Inquirer reported how this growth compelled Republicans to register more voters to retain their local power.

Over time, the county&rsquos booming private sector continued to attract affluent residents who propelled Democratic gains. And so, by 2008, Barack Obama became the first Democrat to win the county since Lyndon Johnson in 1964. Today, progressive sensibilities prevail among county voters who reside in wealthy enclaves with some of the state&rsquos top schools. Like everyone else, they&rsquore enduring the pandemic, but the Rust Belt&rsquos working-class discontent and Philadelphia&rsquos urban unrest are distant concerns. Instead, these voters face the rising costs of the area&rsquos luxury housing and the inconvenience of its congested roads .

Luzerne County presents a dramatic contrast. Once the center of Pennsylvania&rsquos anthracite coal industry , Luzerne played a pivotal role in America&rsquos labor movement. This history fueled loyalty to the Democratic Party, which, with few exceptions, enjoyed generations of support. Luzerne handily supported Obama in the 2008 and 2012 elections. By 2016, however, many voters questioned the Democrats&rsquo commitment to their concerns. &ldquoPeople felt left behind and felt the deck was stacked against them,&rdquo John Yudichak, who represents Luzerne in the state Senate, told Ben Bradlee Jr. for his book &ldquo The Forgotten .&rdquo He added, &ldquoWhen Trump used the word &lsquorigged,&rsquo that resonated.&rdquo

Four years later, the sentiment endures. On paper, Biden looks like a perfect DNA match to Luzerne&rsquos voters: pro-labor, Catholic, and a native of the region. But from the Hazleton area to the Wyoming Valley, county residents, many of whom are still registered Democrats, associate Biden&rsquos party with policies, from trade to immigration, that they see as detrimental to their communities. The question that will perhaps determine the outcome of the 2020 election is how closely they associate old Uncle Joe with the newly &ldquowoke&rdquo version of the Democratic Party.

It&rsquos clear that many of these voters already feel culturally betrayed by their former political guardian. Just last year, Yudichak switched from Democrat to independent, and the GOP won a majority of county council seats in November&rsquos election. This year, Jim Bognet, a Republican, is running a competitive campaign against Rep. Matt Cartwright, the Democratic incumbent who represents most of the region in Congress. Voter statistics confirm that Luzerne is hardly Biden territory. As the Inquirer recently reported , since 2016 the county&rsquos GOP registrations increased by 11,600 voters, while Democratic registrations stayed about the same.

According to the RealClearPolitics polling average , Biden has a five-point lead over Trump in Pennsylvania. The state remains competitive electoral territory &mdash though it&rsquos really a contest of voter enthusiasm in two crucial counties. Luzerne voters reject Biden&rsquos &ldquoMiddle-Class Joe&rdquo persona as contrived and believe that Democrats&rsquo progressive direction imperils the nation&rsquos future. Conversely, Chester voters, disgusted by Trump, view Biden as a leader who could restore national stability. In November, both counties will help determine Pennsylvania&rsquos electoral outcome &mdash and perhaps who wins the White House.

Charles McElwee edits RealClear&rsquos public affairs page on Pennsylvania. He is the 2020-21 John Farley Memorial Fellow, part of The Fund for American Studies&rsquo Robert Novak Journalism Program. Follow him on Twitter @CFMcElwee.

In 1799, during the French invasion of the Arab world, Napoleon issued a proclamation offering Palestine as a homeland to Jews under France’s protection. This was also a way to establish a French presence in the region. Napoleon’s vision of a Jewish state in the Middle East did not materialise at the time – but nor did it die. In the late 19th century, the plan was revived by the British.

Following the collapse of the Ottoman Empire after World War I and the establishment of the Palestine Mandate, the British colonial power began implementing its plan of creating a Jewish state on Palestinian land. At the same time, the Zionist movement was lobbying Western powers to support the mass migration of Jews to Palestine and recognise a Jewish claim to the land.

In 1917, the Balfour Declaration declared British support for a “national home for the Jewish people” in Palestine. The declaration was made in a letter written by Britain's then-Foreign Secretary Arthur James Balfour, to Baron Rothschild, a leader of the British Zionist movement. The letter was endorsed by Britain's then-Prime Minister David Lloyd George, who became a Zionist in 1915.

The letter stated the British would “use their best endeavours to facilitate the achievement of this object”. For Zionists, this was a clear victory.

The influx of Zionists to Palestine, supported by the British, was met by fierce Palestinian resistance. The purchases of land by Jews for Zionist settlement displaced tens of thousands of Palestinians from their homes. The entire process was facilitated by the British.

While the Palestinian leadership in Jerusalem insisted on continuing negotiations with the British to resolve the simmering tensions, Izz Al-Din Al-Qassam, a Syrian leader living in Haifa since 1922, began calling for an armed revolt against the British and the Zionists.

In 1935, Al-Qassam was surrounded by British forces and killed along with some of his men. His resistance inspired many Palestinians. By 1936, an Arab rebellion erupted against British imperialism and Zionist settler-colonialism.

By 1939, the British had smashed the rebellion. The Palestinians found themselves fighting two enemies: British colonial forces and Zionist militia groups.

Although the British had backed mass Jewish immigration to Palestine, the colonial power began to limit the number of Jews arriving to the country in an attempt to quell Arab unrest.

The new limit on immigration upset the Zionists. They launched a series of terrorist attacks on British authorities to drive them out.

The Zionists continued to further advance their dream of creating a Jewish state on Palestinian land. Meanwhile, it became obvious that Palestinian resistance forces were outnumbered and outgunned.

The Zionist strategy of expelling Palestinians from their land was a slow and deliberate process. According to Israeli historian Ilan Pappe, Zionist leaders and military commanders met regularly from March 1947 to March 1948, when they finalised plans to ethnically cleanse Palestine.

As Zionist attacks on the British and Arabs escalated, the British decided to hand over their responsibility for Palestine to the newly founded United Nations.

In November 1947, the UN General Assembly proposed a plan to partition Palestine into a Jewish state and an Arab one. Jews in Palestine only constituted one-third of the population – most of whom had arrived from Europe a few years earlier – and only retained control of less than 5.5 percent of historic Palestine. Yet under the UN proposal, they were allocated 55 percent of the land. The Palestinians and their Arab allies rejected the proposal.

The Zionist movement accepted it however, on the grounds that it legitimised the idea of a Jewish state on Arab land. But they did not agree to the proposed borders, and campaigned to conquer even more of historic Palestine. By early 1948, Zionist forces had captured dozens of villages and cities, displacing thousands of Palestinians, even while the British Mandate was still in effect. In many cases, they carried out organised massacres. The Zionist movement’s message was simple: Palestinians must leave their land or be killed.

As the date (May 14, 1948) selected by the British for their Palestine Mandate to expire approached, Zionist forces hastened their efforts to seize Palestinian land. In April 1948, the Zionists captured Haifa, one of the biggest Palestinian cities, and subsequently set their eyes on Jaffa. On the same day British forces formally withdrew, David Ben-Gurion, then-head of the Zionist Agency, proclaimed the establishment of the state of Israel.

Overnight, the Palestinians became stateless. The world’s two great powers, the United States and the Soviet Union, immediately recognised Israel.

As the Zionists continued their ethnic cleansing campaign against the Palestinians, war broke out between neighbouring Arab countries and the new Zionist state. The UN appointed Swedish diplomat, Folke Bernadotte, as its mediator to Palestine. He recognised the plight of the Palestinians and attempted to address their suffering. His efforts to bring about a peaceful solution and halt to the ongoing ethnic cleansing campaign ended when he was assassinated by the Zionists in September 1948.

By 1949, over 700,000 Palestinians had been made refugees and more than 13,000 had been killed by the Israeli military. The UN continued to push for an armistice deal between Israel and those Arab countries with whom it was at war.

Bernadotte was replaced by his American deputy, Ralph Bunche. Negotiations led by Bunche between Israel and the Arab states resulted in the latter conceding even more Palestinian land to the newly founded Zionist state. In May 1949, Israel was admitted to the UN and its grip over 78 percent of historic Palestine was consolidated. The remaining 22 percent became known as the West Bank and the Gaza Strip.


Championnet så at han trengte å evakuere Genova for å forkorte den lange fronten, men den franske katalogen nektet å vurdere det. Følgelig kunne den franske sjefen ikke samle nok tropper til å beseire Melas nær Cuneo. Den franske regjeringen plyndret Italia grundig, men likevel forsømte å mate, kle eller betale sine soldater som var stasjonert der. Championnet skulle ha avansert til Piemonte i en kraftig styrke i stedet for å bevege seg i fire vidt adskilte kolonner. Ved Genola spredte han hæren sin over en bred front, mens Melas hadde hæren konsentrert under sin umiddelbare kontroll. Han valgte uklokt å kjempe en slaget kamp på slettene mot en fiende som sterkt overgikk ham i kavaleri. Napoleon skrev om Championnet, "Han markerte seg i hæren til Sambre-et-Meuse , hvor hans hadde vært en av de viktigste divisjonene der hadde han blitt gjennomsyret av de falske krigsprinsippene som Jourdans planer ble rettet mot. Han var modig , full av iver, aktiv, viet til sitt land han var en god general for splittelse, en likegyldig øverstkommanderende. "

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