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HTST489 - Oct 28 - Rise of Diplomacy, Cryptography and Cryptoanalysis, Cartography

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HTST 489
John Ferris

HTST 489 Oct 28 Multilateral system leads to looking for comparative advantages. Leads in turn to use of intelligence. In economic, social, technological terms, China and Islamic nations were leading. European states driven to competition in very different ways. Rise of diplomacy. Specifically, of permanent placement of ambassadors abroad. By 1400s, first in Italy and then gradually across all of Western Europe, begins use of resident ambassador. Envoys were much more sporadic. Envoys provided reportage, tried to influence things while in the state. But only temporary. Byzantines would send envoys to live for 4 or 5 months amongst “barbarian” tribes – but eventually going home. Ambassadors are trying to finesse local populations. Multiplying material gathered, communications as well, leading to housing countries to look for gathering intel on these ambassadors through communiques. Larger volume of material open to attack. Some communiques simply sent through the mail, some through messengers – messengers may have questionable loyalty, however. If you manage the information from ambassadors properly, you can have a wealth of useful information. Can form an accurate picture of what's happening across Europe. Venetian archives, for example. Venetians are the early modern state which has the longest run of ambassadors in foreign counrties and systematically collects and analyzes information. Suddenly another target for intel emerges – archives. Byzantines had archives, Chinese governments did too – but ability of foreign states to penetrate these archives is slim. Though if you're say, Italian city-states side by side, it's easier.Another source of intel gathering opens and that's getting access to people's documents. Get access to drafts of correspondents from servants or secretary – may even help you get access to a cipher. If you can break into the archives of any country, can get access to anything they can. 1580s, English, worried about possibility of SpanishArmada. Francis Walzingham (SP) can't penetrate the archives of Spain, but can access the Italian archives. Can pick up copies of Spanish documents the Italians have access to. Diplomatic correspondence and open sources – allowing two intel sources to emerge. Interception of diplomatic correspondence with codebreaking, and attacking archives. Now systemically much more powerful than ever before. Amount of intel available explodes. If there's a single immediate change in the way intel works in this period compared to previous times, that's it. Cryptography and Cryptoanalysis Communications intelligence, codebreaking. Emerges in this period but doesn't become significant source of intel til middle 1600s. Idea that you can turn any language into any other by changing words or letters is ancient. Primitive cryptography had been practiced for well over 1000 years. By the 900s AD, clear in theArab world that they're some writers taking cryptography into levels of sophistcation never before reached – seems to have origins inArab world. Solving ciphered messages doesn't start til 1400s, Italian renaissance diplomatic system. Codebreaking become independent sour
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