Why did Germany wait until 1914 to conclude an alliance with the Ottoman Empire?

Futurist

Ad Honoris
May 2014
22,423
SoCal
Why did Germany wait until 1914 to conclude an alliance with the Ottoman Empire as opposed to creating such an alliance much earlier--like it did with Austria-Hungary back in 1879 in the form of the Dual Alliance and with Italy and Romania (both of whom left this alliance after World War I) in the early 1880s (1882 in the form of the Triple Alliance for Italy and 1883 for Romania)? One would think that Germany would have sought all of the allies that it could get after ties between it and Russia deteriorated in the early 1890s, but Germany waited until World War I actually started before actually making an alliance with the Ottoman Empire. What exactly is the reason for this wait? After all, I seem to recall that German Kaiser Wilhelm II already had a good reputation in the Ottoman Empire for a while before the start of World War I--with his 1898 trip to the Holy Land (then in Ottoman territory) being very notable and important. So, why not make an earlier alliance with the Ottomans?

Also, as a side question, does anyone here know if the German Empire ever sought to form an alliance with Japan? I mean, it seems unlikely considering that, in spite of Russia's alliance with France, Germany actually supported Russia in the Russo-Japanese War. That said, though, I was wondering if there is some information that I am unaware of in regards to this. IMHO, Japan would have been a decent ally for Germany due to both countries having tense relations with Russia and being militaristic, conservative monarchies.

Anyway, any thoughts on all of this?
 
  • Like
Reactions: Lord Oda Nobunaga

MAGolding

Ad Honorem
Aug 2015
2,975
Chalfont, Pennsylvania
I once read that it was the Ottoman government under the Young Turks which sought protection from more powerful states by allying with some powerful European state and finally managed to get an alliance with Germany right as World War One started.
 
  • Like
Reactions: Futurist

Futurist

Ad Honoris
May 2014
22,423
SoCal
I once read that it was the Ottoman government under the Young Turks which sought protection from more powerful states by allying with some powerful European state and finally managed to get an alliance with Germany right as World War One started.
So, the previous Ottoman government was uninterested in having permanent alliances?
 

Maki

Ad Honorem
Jan 2017
3,664
Republika Srpska
Because the Ottomans did not want to commit fully. Sultan Abdul Hamid II initially requested French aid in restructuring the Ottoman military given that France was the traditional ally of the Ottomans, but the French did not respond. Only then did the Ottomans turn to Germany for aid.
 

Futurist

Ad Honoris
May 2014
22,423
SoCal
Because the Ottomans did not want to commit fully. Sultan Abdul Hamid II initially requested French aid in restructuring the Ottoman military given that France was the traditional ally of the Ottomans, but the French did not respond. Only then did the Ottomans turn to Germany for aid.
Did the French not respond because of Russia?
 

Kotromanic

Ad Honorem
Dec 2011
5,021
Iowa USA
I can answer in less than ten words: because fighting European powers since 1730 THEY WERE LOSERS!

What a trio of "seconds": Austria, Italy and OE. Dios mio.
 
  • Like
Reactions: Futurist

Futurist

Ad Honoris
May 2014
22,423
SoCal
I can answer in less than ten words: because fighting European powers since 1730 THEY WERE LOSERS!

What a trio of "seconds": Austria, Italy and OE. Dios mio.
You forgot to mention the Biggest Kahuna of them all--Bulgaria! :lol:
 
Apr 2017
1,665
U.S.A.
The Ottomans didn't want to be dragged into wars with the major powers, they knew they would lose. They looked to multiple European powers for aid, including Britain (who had a habit of taking territory for their aid), France and Germany. Germany had been working towards building their Berlin to Baghdad railroad, which created a stir in Europe. Fears of this being extended to Basra caused some talks about it.
The Ottomans had proposed alliances to Britain and Germany before the war but both rejected it as an alliance would offer them nothing and only tie them down. Before ww1 the great powers knew a major war was coming, they didn't want to be dragged into it over the Ottoman empire.
Eventually the Ottomans promised to aid the germans in ww1 but they were dragging their feet. Two german ships that were caught in the Mediterranean when the war broke out fled to turkey and were transferred to them to prevent them from being sunk by the allies. The German crew were training the Turks when they agreed to ally with Germany. Eventually German high command decided to force the issue and had the German captains take the ships on raids on Russia, this forced the ottomans into the war. If left to their own devices the Ottomans may not have actually joined the war.
As for Japan, it was previously an ally of Britain to counter Russian expansion. After it grew in power Britain became wary of it and distanced themselves. Germany supported Russia in the Russo-Japanese war and advocated European rule of east asia, this poisoned relations. During ww1 Japan knew they wouldn't stand a chance against Britain and France in the pacific so they instead wisely seized german territory.
 
  • Like
Reactions: Futurist
Nov 2019
125
United States
The Ottoman's only ace card was control of the Bosphorous Straits. Making an Alliance with the OE would have been considered an aggressive act by the German Empire prior to Russia declaring war, and conflicted in many ways with the Austro-Hungarian Empire's long term aims for Southeastern Europe.

The Kaiser always felt he could control his cousin the Czar, why make a bad situation worse?