GS Mains Daily Answer Writing
1. Investigate the specific actions and interventions of Napoleon that facilitated the unification of Germany and Italy, delving into his role as a driving force in these landmark processes.
(Answer in 150 words) 10
2. Discuss the causes behind the recent escalation of tropical cyclones in the Indian Ocean and analyze the consequential effects resulting from this notable trend.
(Answer in 250 words) 15
1. Investigate the specific actions and interventions of Napoleon that facilitated the unification of Germany and Italy, delving into his role as a driving force in these landmark processes. (10 marks)
- Napoleon Bonaparte as the leader of revolutionary France and by virtue of his military and administrative capabilities led to lasting changes in Europe.
Contribution of Napoleon in Unification of Germany
- German states scattered and disunited as part of the Holy Roman Empire.
- Napoleon defeated Prussia at the battle of Jena in 1806, subjugating the Prussian Kingdom (strongest German state). Prussia headed the confederation of the Rhine, leading to the dissolution of the Holy Roman Empire.
- German nationalism grew in Prussia, inspired by French nationalism under Napoleon.
- The post Napoleonic war Vienna Congress of 1815 placed German states under Austrian dominance which sowed seeds of discord with Prussia (rising German military power).
- Otto von Bismarck, Chancellor of Prussia, used this German nationalism to unite scattered German states first into a customs union and then a political union under Prussian leadership by successfully defeating Austria and France in successive wars.
Contribution of Napoleon in Unification of Italy
- Italian states under Austrian domination were freed by Napoleon during the Italian campaigns of 1792-97.
- Dissolution of the Holy Roman Empire after the battle of Austerlitz smashed the old feudal structures and introduced modern ideas of nationalism and republican government.
- The Congress of Vienna placed Italian states under Austrian dominance.
- Rising calls for national government under the Carbonaris, Mazzini and Garibaldi.
- Mazzini formed Young Italy with the aim of establishing an independent republican nation with Rome as its capital.
- King Emmanuel II and his minister Count Cavour worked towards modernising and re-organising Italian states.
- Following the Franco-Prussian war of 1870, Rome was annexed from the Papacy and Italian unification was completed.
- Thus, Napoleon contributed to the unifications of Italy and Germany by breaking down the old structures (Holy Roman Empire, Papal States) and sowing the seeds for nationalism and modernity.
2. Discuss the causes behind the recent escalation of tropical cyclones in the Indian Ocean and analyze the consequential effects resulting from this notable trend. (15 Marks)
- Recently Cyclone Biparjoy created havoc in India. This was the second-largest cyclone in the last 50 years hitting India.
- The rapid warming of the Indian Ocean due to climate change is leading to more cyclones pummeling South Asia, as storms gather more quickly and become more intense.
Causes of Increasing tropical cyclones -
- Climate change
- The proportion of severe cyclones, based on the metric called the Saffir-Simpson hurricane wind scale, had increased by five per cent per decade since 1979.
- Rising sea water levels will likely intensify the destructive impact of the cyclonic storms due to increased storm surges which inundate coastal areas during an ongoing storm, bringing in sea-water that decreases soil fertility and corrodes buildings.
- The amount of rainfall carried by the storms might also increase by an average of 14 per cent due to the warming-fuelled increase in moisture in the atmosphere which can cause more intense floods.
- In the Indian Ocean region, the chances of cyclonic disturbances on the sea surface, known as low pressure areas, transforming into cyclones have increased in the Arabian Sea (India Meteorological Department (IMD))
- In 2019, five out of the eight cyclones that impacted India formed in the Arabian Sea. The average number of annual cyclones in the Arabian Sea is increasing.
- Low level cyclonic vorticity → intensified cyclone in Bay of Bengal.
- Tropical cyclones such as rapid intensification which could make them unpredictable and difficult to monitor. Rapid intensification happens when there is an increase of maximum sustained winds of a cyclone by at least 55 kilometres per hour within 24 hours.
- In 2020, Cyclone Amphan displayed rapid intensification when it developed from a cyclone (wind speeds of 70-80 km per hr) to a super cyclone (wind speeds in excess of 220 km per hr) in about 40 hours.
- Stronger storms might occur in areas closer to the North and South Poles which means that seas in these regions are becoming warmer. Countries which had never felt the impacts of cyclones might start witnessing them.
- The IPCC reports indicate an increase in Arabian Sea cyclones during the pre and post-monsoon seasons as a response to the rapid ocean warming trends
- Delay in Monsoon: The strong low-pressure areas at their core induce the surrounding winds to rush towards them.
- Rise in Extreme Rainfall events: Widespread extreme rainfall events that cause floods have also increased by threefold over India, in response to Arabian Sea warming.
- Forecasting Challenge: The new trend is encouraging more and more rapid intensification of cyclones. State-of-the-art cyclone models are unable to pick this rapid intensification because they do not incorporate the ocean dynamics accurately
- Vulnerability: As climate change triggered tropical cyclones are on the rise in coastal India, the unplanned development adds to the vulnerability of these cities.The devastation in West Bengal in the wake of cyclone Amphan cost $13 billion in damage.
- Implementation of coastal zone regulations in consultation with local communities are important along with limiting global emission levels as per Paris agreement.