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Tuesday, August 12. 2014
Thinking about the Great War 100 years ago. A terrible, pointless war that never should have happened. Historians say that WW2 was just a continuation of it.
The best movie I've seen about the Great War is The Shooting Party. There is no war in it except allusions to it in the last 30 seconds.
Two good pieces:
The World the Great War Swept Away - In 1914, Europe was prosperous and what followed was unimaginable.
The 100th Anniversary of the Great State Crime. He quotes the excellent Paul Fussell:
Posted by Bird Dog in The Culture, "Culture," Pop Culture and Recreation at 17:17 | Comments (24) | Trackbacks (0)
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If WWII was a continuation of WWI, and WWI was pointless, then so likely was WWII. Hoever, I disagree. The German desire for war was not pointless, they had definite goals in mind. Many of the German leaders were convinced that war with Russia was enevitable, even desirable, and given the rapid industrialization of Russia, the sooner the better. WWII was Hitler's attempt at a remake, the goals and world view of the Nazi's were not much different from those of the leaders of the German Empire. Even at the end of WWI the Germans had some million troops in the east and were planning on how to exploit the territory gained in the treaty of Brest-Litovsk.
Act Two culminated in President Harry Truman's two gratuitous atomic bombings of the Japanese cities of Hiroshima and Nagasaki
Gratuitous? Seriously, you regard the Reason article as good?
My sentiments, too. If interested as to why, I can list some links.
The atomic bombings at Hiroshima and Nagasaki were not gratuitous and they were not mass murder as the linked article (at Free Association) says.
At that point in the war, there were still hundreds of thousands of casualties left to happen. They were going to either be US soldiers or Japanese soldiers and civilians or both. Just simple math would tell you that dropping the atomic bombs saved more humanity - especially US humanity.
Let's review a little. The US warned that they had a bomb much more destructive than anything yet seen and gave the Japanese the chance to surrender. They chose not to because they felt that surrender had no honor. In other words, their agenda was more important than human life. They may have also been skeptical of the US's claim. So we dropped the first atomic bomb on Hiroshima and destroyed it. Now that the destructive power of the bomb could not be denied, did the Japanese surrender to end the bloodshed? NO! They (in the form of the military hardliners that were essentially running things) still chose death before dishonor. It was only after the second bomb was dropped on Nagasaki did they finally surrender. The fact that it took dropping two atomic bombs to end the war should tell you something (but apparently not author of the post on Free Association. I expect too much of someone who lionizes "Chelsea Manning" and calls himself a Palestinian.).
Interesting articles, interesting points of view. Not saying I agree with them.
After all of it, the Germans won recent history - now control Europe pretty much. And the Japanese sort-of won also - one of the most powerful economies in the world despite minimal territory.
The Shooting Party. My favorite dramatic movie of all time. James mason's last. A haunting and elegiac portrait of the world before the war
The article "The 100th Anniversary of the Great State Crime" also links to an article that claims that the mess in the Middle East was caused by French and British Colonialists. I guess the French and the Brits are responsible for the desire of Islamofascists to commit genocide and create a world wide Caliphate. I suppose this is a new phenomenon and we can ignore the times in history - starting in the 700 when Charles Martel defeated the Islamofascits, then the beginning of the second millennium when the Crusaders attempted to free the Christian holy sites in the Middle East from Islamofascists, eventually to the early 1800's when they ran roughshod on the high seas demanding tribute from all nations, to the present time when people of the same ideology aspire to genocide; murder women, children, and anybody who disagrees with them; who kidnap young schoolgirls and force them to convert to Islam or sell them; and who practice slavery of non Muslims.
My esteem for Reason magazine has fallen.
That is Richman's view, not the magazine's view.
Same as at Maggie's, we like to hear all different views.
I understand. I like to hear different views, too. There is an editorial line that must be drawn that balances openness and preferred content (I don't claim that Reason must agree with me or that they do), but I hope they don't agree with either the Free Association post or the Explore Freedom posts. My opinion was that for me, that line was crossed. But that's just me. :-)
Well, if WWII was a continuation of WWI and the Cold War was a continuation of WWII, then that's a long war.
But we can see it as WWI being the strong break with the pre-modern world and progression into the modern world. There was the technology but most of the world was still run by absolutist states, this progressed to pushing back the absolutist church even further and moved to a more individualist society with the family/tribe no longer defining the individual. But even as these spheres separated, many groped for a new ideology to replace religion and their beloved overbearing state.
Forgiveness is so off the charts, yet so logical, considering where we find ourselves . . . Whatever, the other Abrahamic considerations and all their truths. Find this one, something 2b said 4 not having all the answers.
This man is doing an audio book of sorts about WW1,
I like the guy.
So far he's done 3 parts (3 hours each), here is a link to the first part:
Good for those sleepless nights.
re Thinking about the Great War 100 years ago. A terrible, pointless war that never should have happened.
I understand the sequence of events that led to the Great War, but I still don't understand why it turned out as it did. It was in no country's interest to go to war.... and yet they all did.
A couple of weeks ago I was reading that most of the personalities (of all the countries) involved with the run up to the war destroyed or rewrote their paper footprint to escape responsibility for the catastrophe as the war dragged on. We will probably never no precisely why it happened.
Having said that, there was no doubt that Europe, and particularly Germany was spoiling for a fight. I have read articles written years before the outbreak of the Great War that predicted a general European war. So everyone saw the War coming, and yet they were surprised when it came. Very strange IMO.
While of course one can't expect to agree with all parts of an article, it's important not to open with monstrously wrong statements. If you do that, I blow off the rest of your article. So it is with "gratuitous" bombing of Hiroshima and Nagasaki. Anything after that is not worth reading.
Reversed the idea of progress, but not progress itself, which continued. Perhaps our society’s ideas will again conform to reality. Or try to.