Cases where a country became easier to manage as a result of it losing some territory?

Futurist

Ad Honoris
May 2014
21,721
SoCal
Which cases were there where a country became easier to manage as a result of it losing some territory? An obvious examples of this would be India (which is what inspired me to ask this question in the first place), where the Indian National Congress (INC) preferred to see India get partitioned (even if it wasn't their first choice) rather than to have a united India with a very weak central government. Basically, the INC preferred to have a smaller India but one with a stronger central government and one where the INC would be dominant to an India that was larger but with a weaker central government and one where the INC would have to share power with the Muslim League and be less capable of actually getting things done. Another example of this could be Algeria, where Charles de Gaulle encouraged French people to withdraw from Algeria in order to maintain France's European and Christian character. Ditto for Israelis who encouraged Israeli withdrawal from the Sinai, Gaza Strip, and West Bank--though none of these territories other than East Jerusalem are actually officially a part of Israel.

Anyway, what other examples of this have there been?
 

Futurist

Ad Honoris
May 2014
21,721
SoCal
I just remembered that there is a large ex-USSR country that fits this description and that indeed became easier to manage after a couple of its territories seceded several years ago. However, that's a post-1991 topic and thus I will avoid getting into further specifics here.
 

stevev

Ad Honorem
Apr 2017
3,519
Las Vegas, NV USA
Perhaps it's not what you were thinking but the British Empire is arguably an example. After about 1870 it was a money losing proposition. Britain was willing to give home rule to Canada and Australia and it was a model for later situations. Today the highest GDPs per capita are in smaller countries and they aren't necessarily rich in natural resources: Luxembourg, Austria, Norway, Sweden, Finland, Netherlands, Singapore, Iceland, Slovenia and Hong Kong if it were a country.
 
  • Like
Reactions: Futurist
Sep 2019
47
Turkey
Holy Roman Empire . İn the 16th century there were a lot small countries that gained independence from Holy roman empire (Bavyara , Salzburg , Saxonya ,Grand Duchy of Warsaw )
 
  • Like
Reactions: Futurist
Mar 2018
786
UK
Today the highest GDPs per capita are in smaller countries
That's just statistics. There are more smaller countries than bigger countries, so the richest/poorest/best educated/worst educated/etc.... countries are almost always small. When you have a sample with biased weights, you can't use relative frequencies to deduce any kind of causal relationship.

Of course it might be true that smaller countries are able to become richer because of their size. All I'm saying is that this proposition is not supported by the statement "the highest GDPs per capita are in smaller countries".
 
  • Like
Reactions: Futurist
Oct 2011
421
Croatia
Byzantine Empire. After Muslim invasions, it had lost Balkans, Middle East and North Africa. Latter two regions were major sources of heresies and rebellions, as well as extremely culturally and ethnically diverse, so the Empire of 7th to 11th centuries was ironically stronger, more resillient and more stable society than, say, the Empire of Justinian. This was helped by adaptations in administrative structure - introduction of the theme system - which further localized and simplified administration.
 
  • Like
Reactions: Futurist

Futurist

Ad Honoris
May 2014
21,721
SoCal
Byzantine Empire. After Muslim invasions, it had lost Balkans, Middle East and North Africa. Latter two regions were major sources of heresies and rebellions, as well as extremely culturally and ethnically diverse, so the Empire of 7th to 11th centuries was ironically stronger, more resillient and more stable society than, say, the Empire of Justinian. This was helped by adaptations in administrative structure - introduction of the theme system - which further localized and simplified administration.
What's the story behind their heresies and rebellions? A link would work for this, FTR.

Also, the Byzantines eventually reconquered the Balkans--under the Macedonian dynasty, I believe. The Byzantines subsequently kept the Balkans until the 1180s or so.

Malaysia after expelling Singapore
Singapore after we left Malaysia.
Excellent examples.

Holy Roman Empire . İn the 16th century there were a lot small countries that gained independence from Holy roman empire (Bavyara , Salzburg , Saxonya ,Grand Duchy of Warsaw )
Were those countries a pain in the ass for the HRE?

Perhaps it's not what you were thinking but the British Empire is arguably an example. After about 1870 it was a money losing proposition. Britain was willing to give home rule to Canada and Australia and it was a model for later situations. Today the highest GDPs per capita are in smaller countries and they aren't necessarily rich in natural resources: Luxembourg, Austria, Norway, Sweden, Finland, Netherlands, Singapore, Iceland, Slovenia and Hong Kong if it were a country.
Small countries have an advantage in being able to be centers of tourism or gambling or finance or banking or something along those lines. It might not be too difficult for small countries to find a specialized niche that works for them--especially, but not necessarily only, if they have a high level of human capital.

Also, Yes, the loss of European empires benefited various European countries due to the fact that these countries no longer had to subsidize their empires. Interestingly enough, this is also true in regards to Russia and Central Asia. AFAIK, Central Asia was a net recipient in the late USSR while Russia and Belarus (not even Ukraine!) were the only two net donors within the late USSR.
 
  • Like
Reactions: stevev

Futurist

Ad Honoris
May 2014
21,721
SoCal
I just remembered that there is a large ex-USSR country that fits this description and that indeed became easier to manage after a couple of its territories seceded several years ago. However, that's a post-1991 topic and thus I will avoid getting into further specifics here.
We can talk about pre-1991 demographics here, so here's a map of Ukraine's Russian percentage (out of the total population) for various of its oblasts in 1989:



The most Russian oblast in Ukraine in 1989 (Crimea) and huge parts of the second-most and third-most Russian oblasts in Ukraine in 1989 (Donetsk and Luhansk) are no longer part of Ukraine right now--though they were still part of Ukraine back in 1989. Had Ukraine lost these three oblasts back in 1991, it might have been easier to govern starting from 1991 due to it having a smaller Russian minority in such a scenario.