13c. Understanding Disraeli’s response to the Eastern Question. Using the passages and your own knowledge, assess the view that Disraeli achieved little in his foreign policy regarding the Eastern Question beyond boosting his own reputation. The Eastern Question was a
Disraeli’s foreign policy regarding the Eastern question is questionable and there is conflict amongst historians whether his foreign policy was successful or whether he simply passed aggressive and unnecessary policies in a vain pursuit of keeping the British Empire prevalent. The sources seem to all come to a consensus that Disraeli did boost his own and his party’s reputation apart from interpretation A. Interpretation A, written by Richard Shannon, heavily criticises Disraeli’s foreign policy and specifically focuses on his actions in the 1878 Berlin congress. Shannon says, “Beaconsfield achieved nothing serious himself at the congress except to be the gratified recipient of Bismarck’s heavy flattery”. However Shannon does agree that Interpretation C says that Disraeli was very successful in the congress of Berlin and also boosted his own reputation. Interpretation B agrees that Disraeli had successes in the purchase of the Suez Canal shares and says; “Gladstone left it out of his Midlothian indictment of “Beconsfieldism”. This suggests that Gladstone either saw this as a success in foreign policy or knew it was a popular decision. Source D stresses points in C in terms of Disraeli securing popularity for himself. It says that his main success in foreign policy regarding the eastern Question was the effect his actions had on domestic politics. Source A however totally disagrees with source C and scathingly points out that Disraeli achived “very little but to please the national public” and does not acknowledge that Disraeli had any successes in his policy whatsoever. So is in direct agreement with the question It can be argued that Disraeli did not show any kind of moral principle in...
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