When the World War broke out his attitude was favourable to the absolute neutrality of Italy, believing that his country's interests lay in not siding with either group of belligerents, and on the eve of Italian intervention he made an attempt, by using his personal hold over the Parliamentary majority, to upset the Salandra Cabinet, but it was frustrated by an uprising of public opinion in favour of war.
Generally he was in favour of more decided intervention on behalf of continental Protestants than Elizabeth would admit; but it is not always easy to ascertain the advice he gave.
The hopes of ultimate success were frustrated by the intervention of Russia; all appeals to the western powers were vain, and on the 11th of August Kossuth abdicated in favour of GOrgei, on the ground that in the last extremity the general alone could save the nation.
These measures of repression aroused great indignation in Europe, and led first to the intervention of the English, French and Russian squadrons (see Navarino, Battle Of), and then to the landing of a French expeditionary force.
It may here be mentioned, as a remarkable instance of his foresight, that Palmerston told Lord Malmesbury, on his accession to the foreign office in 1858, that the chief reason of his opposition to the canal was this: he believed that, if the canal was made and proved successful, Great Britain, as the first mercantile state, and that most closely connected with the East, would be the power most interested in it; that England would therefore be drawn irresistibly into a more direct interference in Egypt, which it was desirable to avoid because England had already enough upon her hands, and because intervention might lead to a rupture with France.
Canning, freed from Wellington's restraint, carried his intervention on behalf of Greece a step further, and 6 Memorandum to Canning of January 26, 1826 (Well.
Baring forcibly argued against British intervention in the affairs of the Sudan, and on the 13th of December Lord Granville telegraphed that Her Majestys government recommend the ministers of khedive to come to an early decision to abandon all territory south of Assuan, or, at least, of Wadi Haifa.
Scarcely less valuable to Austria was the tsar's intervention in the quarrel between Austria and Prussia arising out of the Hesse incident and the general question of the hegemony of Germany.
The Spaniards had no longer any hope of adding Luxemburg to their Franche-Comt; while the Holy Roman Empire in Germany, taken in the rear by Sweden (now mistress of the Baltic and the North Sea), cut off for good from the United Provinces and the Swiss cantons, and enfeebled by the recognized right of intervention in German affairs on the part of Sweden and France, was now nothing but a meaningless name.
At first her intervention in the business of packing was received skeptically.