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#3899071 - 01/21/14 02:40 PM Re: WWI re-evaluated. [Re: RedToo]  
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Lol. Blackadder is simply brilliant stuff.


“Whoever fights monsters should see to it that in the process he does not become a monster. And if you gaze long enough into an abyss, the abyss will gaze back into you.”
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#3899072 - 01/21/14 02:40 PM Re: WWI re-evaluated. [Re: RedToo]  
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Got to love Black Adder.

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The WW1 episodes especially were brilliant.


"...late afternoon the Air Tasking Order came in [and] we found the A-10 part and we said, "We are going where!? We are doing what!?"

Capt. Todd Sheehy, Hog pilot, on receiving orders during Operation Desert Storm

#3899082 - 01/21/14 02:53 PM Re: WWI re-evaluated. [Re: RedToo]  
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Excellent ...and not far off the truth....it was all a cunning plan biggrin

Last edited by No105_Archie; 01/21/14 02:53 PM.

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#3899212 - 01/21/14 07:05 PM Re: WWI re-evaluated. [Re: Dogsbd]  
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There have already been some good posts, however if i read this:

Originally Posted By: Dogsbd
Well let me re-phrase that, yes the Balkan states were spoiling for a fight. But Germany was the only major power that wanted a war. Russia didn't, France didn't, Britain didn't, Italy didn't. Germany was the primary factor in turning a regional conflict into a world war. IMO.


i have to answer !

"Germany was the only major power who wanted a war" ? Both France and Russia wanted to kick Germany, as you can read in original documents when the ambassadors of France and Russia in St. Petersburg had met and agreed to "...meet again 'unter den Linden' in Berlin, before the year's end ...". This was on New Year's eve 1914, and it was even written down.
It is also knwon that Germany had asked Belgium for an allowance to march through, something that a neutral country certainly could not do.
On the other hand Belgium was not exactly neutral or harmless, when it came to its colonies. History reports 40 million african civilian deaths in the Congo, due to belgian King Leopold 'the slaughterer', who ran the colony as a private enterprise. Rhodes in his privately owned 'Rhodesia' was 'benevolent', in comparison (*hrrrm* lmao).

Germany had the choice of going through Belgium first, or waiting to be attacked from both sides, Russia and France. France was a bit more eager than Russia though, thinking of Napoleon I through III, but they sure had an axe to grind.
Interestingly, the original French plans included invading Germany through Belgium as well, but as things went they came a bit too late.
As Niall Ferguson points out in 'The pity of war', England would have invaded Belgium as well. B.t.w. they had held manoeuvers in 1907, simulating landing military in Belgium, across the channel.
Italy wanted to get big chunks of the toppling austro-hungarian Empire, and had the least reason to enter the war, if you blind out good old imperial greed. Venice was not always italian, you know.

As someone else put it, harsh but true:
" ... Germans had the choice of going through Belgium first, or waiting for a simultanous invasion from Russia and France. Belgs had a choice of granting Germans passage and being invaded by Britons or French, or refusing passage and being invaded by Germans. French had the choice of keeping peace and letting Germans mind their business, or assembling an international anti-German coalition, plan, and then execute a world war over a previous conflict (which France had started, too, and duly lost). Britons had the choice of informing Germans they were going to back France in the case of war (which could prevent the war) or feign neutrality until Germans committed to war with the French (which would ensure Germans stumble into an unwinnnable war). But sure, let's blame Germans for using every promising strategy when fighting for survival, they should have lain belly up and accept the Versailles treaty without a fight. ..."

The book 'The sleepwalkers' is not quite as harsh, but comes to a similar conclusion.

Germany was not shy of fighting, but it found itself in a war intended by Russia and France. I guess we will all be astonished if those archives will be really opened, after a hundred years. I doubt the latter though.

#3899269 - 01/21/14 08:38 PM Re: WWI re-evaluated. [Re: RedToo]  
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That is pretty much the impression I got from the British official papers as published in the previously noted book. No-one came out of it looking smart, or noble.

#3899321 - 01/21/14 10:31 PM Re: WWI re-evaluated. [Re: PanzerMeyer]  
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Originally Posted By: PanzerMeyer
Lol. Blackadder is simply brilliant stuff.


Oh christ...Gove IS right about Black Adder! biggrin

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#3899499 - 01/22/14 04:21 AM Re: WWI re-evaluated. [Re: RedToo]  
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A side of WW1 that I had not heard of until now.

Quote:
In what is quite possibly the most bizarre result of global warming yet, a melting glacier in the Northern-Italian Alps is slowly revealing the corpses of soldiers who died in the First World War. After nearly a century, the frozen bodies appear to be perfectly mummified from the ice. With the remains also comes the story of the highest battle in historyThe White War.

The year is May 1915. The newly unified Italy decides to join the Allied Forces in the First World War, which by then is 10 months underway. Italy, eager to expand its borders, decides to wage war against Austria in an effort to annex the mountain areas of Trentino and Southern Tirol. The conflict results in what is now known as The White War: a cold, four-year-long standoff between Italian mountain troops, named the Alpini, and their Austrian opponents, the Kaiserschtzen. The battle was fought at high altitude, with special weapons and infrastructure like ice-trenches and cable transports. Often the sides would use mortar fire to try and incur avalanchesthe white deathon each others camps, claiming thousands of lives.

-------- text deleted --------

To date, more than 80 bodies have appeared from the depths of the glacier. And more will surely follow. On the Italian side alone more than 750,000 soldiers died in battle, according to historian Mark Thompson, author of The White War.


Source: http://motherboard.vice.com/blog/global-...herboardrss




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#3899510 - 01/22/14 04:45 AM Re: WWI re-evaluated. [Re: RedToo]  
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Erwin Rommel fought on the Alpine front during WW1.


“Whoever fights monsters should see to it that in the process he does not become a monster. And if you gaze long enough into an abyss, the abyss will gaze back into you.”
#3899554 - 01/22/14 06:07 AM Re: WWI re-evaluated. [Re: Lieste]  
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Originally Posted By: Lieste
Umm. No. Everyone was spoiling for a (albeit local) fight... This was the primary reason for all the convoluted alliances ~ an attempt to make it unthinkable.

The balkan states *really* wanted war ~ everyone else would have sat out if their commitments hadn't been tested by their allies.

I'd really recommend the book "War 1914: Punishing the Serbs" for a view of the conflict drawn directly from the UK archives - the various reports, memos, notes on conversations and other political manoeuvrings. It is far from clear that Germany even remotely wanted war... though it could perhaps have been a little more assertive right at the beginning after a while the momentum was such that no country could have backed down and saved face... and the young men and their families suffered as a consequence of that pride and inflexibility. It is hard to see how anyone could have bent enough to have avoided it though, especially in light of modern wars that are waged with equally flimsy pretexts.


To expand on it, everyone also expected a war to come. There had been a number of crises that almost lead to wars. Some of these involved Germany and her colonial ambitions in Africa, one involved France and the UK over land in the Sudan. Then there were lesser crises, like the Pig War. Other issues being that the UK perceived Germany as a direct rival to her, this was partly due to diplomatic incompetence by the Germans after Bismarck left public life and then died. Though the failure to keep Russia out of the French sphere was a major failing by him as I recall.

The Germans wanted to weaken a rising Russia as I recall, and had colonial ambitions. The French wanted to regain Alsace-Lorraine, and return the favor for the peace resulting from the Franco Prussian war. The Russians wanted to protect their "South Slav" compatriots (the Serbs, etc). The Austro-Hungarians wanted to incorporate Serbia to weaken Serbian nationalism in their own territory, the Hungarians probably also wanted to just pound on Serbs. The Serbs on their part considered the Austro-Hungarians as an existential threat, which they were. Though the response to this threat was perhaps mildly insane by some.

Last edited by TankHunter; 01/22/14 06:07 AM.

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In the end you will have nothing
Even if you are destined for great riches
In the end you will return to the dust
#3899647 - 01/22/14 01:03 PM Re: WWI re-evaluated. [Re: wheelsup_cavu]  
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Originally Posted By: wheelsup_cavu
A side of WW1 that I had not heard of until now...

Wheels



I've been to the Dolomites region in the Alps quite a few times. The frontline literally wound along peaks and ridge lines. To this day you can find rusted wire and sometimes even rifle cartridges next to the old fortifications and embrasures. Many of the supply routes blasted into the rock by the soldiers back then are now used as hiking/climbing trails.

Most famous among them is probably the Alpinisteig:





"...late afternoon the Air Tasking Order came in [and] we found the A-10 part and we said, "We are going where!? We are doing what!?"

Capt. Todd Sheehy, Hog pilot, on receiving orders during Operation Desert Storm

#3899691 - 01/22/14 02:22 PM Re: WWI re-evaluated. [Re: RedToo]  
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#3899694 - 01/22/14 02:26 PM Re: WWI re-evaluated. [Re: Para_Bellum]  
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Is that the same as this one? Pasubio: Strada delle Gallerie
The other post mentions mortars that trigger (snow) avalanches. Probably even more amazing are the mining efforts Messines-style, blowing up whole mountain peaks.
Just found this page: Virtual tour of the Italian Front

#3899699 - 01/22/14 02:33 PM Re: WWI re-evaluated. [Re: RedToo]  
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No doubt France wanted to revenge the defeat of 1871 and retake Alsace Lorraine...all eyed were focused on 'blue line of the Vosges (mountains)' (actual expression) beyond which were the lost territories...War or at least a confrontation against Germany was inevitable and France during the preceeding decades prepared it with all means, militarization of the bodies and souls, of the industry, cult of the nation and the motherland, mobilization of all ressources, colonies, etc...etc.

Last edited by kaa; 01/22/14 02:34 PM.

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#3899700 - 01/22/14 02:36 PM Re: WWI re-evaluated. [Re: WhoCares]  
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Originally Posted By: WhoCares
Is that the same as this one? Pasubio: Strada delle Gallerie[/url]


No, that's another one.

The Italian name is Strada degli Alpini.


"...late afternoon the Air Tasking Order came in [and] we found the A-10 part and we said, "We are going where!? We are doing what!?"

Capt. Todd Sheehy, Hog pilot, on receiving orders during Operation Desert Storm

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