The chief success of the government lay in the field of foreign politics, where it prudently avoided entanglement in the ambitious schemes of Hellenistic monarchs, but gained great prestige by energetic interference against aggressors who threatened the existing balance of power or the security of the seas.
P g on the 31st of March 1904, the first hostile encounter took place at Guru, when the Tibetans (the aggressors) were defeated.
This was seized upon as a pretext for violent anti-clerical demonstrations all over Italy and for brutal and unprovoked attacks on unoffending priests; at Spezia a church was set on fire and another dismantled, at Marino Cardinal Merry del Val was attacked by a gang of hooligans, and at Rome the violence of the teppisti reached such a pitch as to provoke reaction on the part of all respectable people, and some of the aggressors were very roughly handled.
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