What were the long term consequences of the Italian Unification?
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A unified Italy, along with Germany, which unified a few years later, permanently altered the strategic dynamic on continental Europe. On the one hand, Italy never became the dominant military power that Germany, unfied under Prussia, did. But on the other, Italy posed a threat on Austria-Hungary's southern flank, and its independence ended hundreds of years of French involvement with the politics on the peninsula. Though they fought unification on the battlefields, Austria almost immediately made overtures to Italy, who joined them in the Triple Alliance in 1882. The unification preceded a degree of cultural unity, as regions of the nation that previously had almost nothing in common with each other found themselves under the same political head.
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