I also think that economics had a great deal to do with it. Germany's economy was booming, and the British was starting to creak, and grind to a halt. If no Great War would India have been granted independence or a federated dominion status? Would the US have remained a 2nd rate power, and Germany would be the new "worlds policeman" as the British Empire became more and more arthritic? Would Russia have fallen apart the way it did without the war, and if it did, would Kerensky have maintained power and defeated the bolsheviks? Also would the Ottoman Empire have lasted into the 21st Century, and would the Middle East be the sh*thole it is today if the Empire had not fallen apart, and the British and French helped themselves to the spoils? Would the Hashemites still control Mecca and Medina, and the al-Saud clan still be f**king their camels?
Was Ww1 Inevitable?
Posted 28 June 2015 - 1503 PM
The irony was that 2nd rate civil servants pushed the panic button, and things got out of hand beyond the ability of the leaders with cooler heads to stop things. Also IIRC one of the German General staff told Der Kaiser that they could not reverse the mobilization, when there were plans for just than eventuality.
The immediate problem was the blank check given by William II to the Austrians, trumping the Russian backing of Serbia. At hat point, the A-H needed to back down, but they were in panic mode vs Serbia. The Tsar's order for full mobilization was the second irrevocable error, but even then it was not too late.
The irony was that nobody really needed to acquire more land.
Posted 28 June 2015 - 1544 PM
Germany was so concerned about A-H that when A-H declared trade war on Serbia Germany offered to buy everything that A-H was buying previously at usually much better prices also. A friend's great-great-grandfather was a struggling livestock merchant for almost 15 years selling livestock in A-H, he made a fortune in 5 years he was selling to Germany...
Posted 18 July 2015 - 2037 PM
IMHO and recognize YMMV but I've long thought that some kind of war was inevitable. It does not have to be the one that happened however while there was hope for the future in parts of society other parts saw war as coming. In France there was Alsace/Lorraine. In Germany there was the sence of being surrounded and kept out of "a place in the sun." In Russia there was a thought that a war could help distract from internal issue's. Every power in Europe had been waiting for the Ottoman Empire to implode for a century and waited to pick up the pieces.
As I see it the break in history was the French Revolution and the wars that followed. That didn't end till the Wall came down and the last Soviet soldier left Germany.
Posted 19 July 2015 - 0402 AM
Modern warfare began with Napoleon, who exploited the French reforms of the previous generations.