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DISCUSSION - World War I

Goddess
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Yeah it's been 100 years since the beginning of World War I, so what has stood out from it? What are your thoughts on the impacts that the war had on modern society or the 21st century. What do you think were the mistakes and successes during the War? And so on. What do you think was lost during the war period? e.g like one Olympic Games (1916).


- Be respectful to each others opinions
- Do not attack a user directly or personally insult them
- Keep in mind that if you agree or disagree, please explain why. We don't want single word answers basically


The war lasted from 1914 to 1918.
 
Head Bus Driver
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Obviously the mistakes were having a Europe so intertwined in alliances that one spark could bring about such a massive war. Along with not marching directly onto Germany giving the German people the belief that the war was still winnable. Of course there were mistakes after the war with reparations and the league of nations, but that all happened afterwards.

I think the impact on the modern society is the clear understanding of the horrors of chemical weapons, a horror so unimaginable that they were banned from World War 2 and have been a weapon of fear ever since.
 
追放されたバカ
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K we only studied WW1 a little in school we focused much much more on World War 2.
But unlike WW2, I always felt Germany was in the right, and we (the Uk and others) were in the wrong in WW1

Here's what I know:

it started when a Serbian assassinated an Austria duke.
So Germany steps in to defend Austria, which seems fair enough.
Then everyone else seems to pile on against Germany.

Then to make matters worse, they basically caused WW2 by then being really harsh on Germany in terms of reparations etc, basically blaming Germany for the whole thing and making them pay, crushing the German economy under debt etc.

I remember reading that it was Germany surrendering that first sent Hitler a bit crazy, if the world had been a bit fairer to Germany, Hitler would probably not have ever come to power, as the German people wouldn't be feeling so desperate as to vote for him and so WW2 would never have happened and all those atrocities would never have happened, and millions of people would have lived.
 
URPG!
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World War I was the single-most destructive (and pointless) war in world history. And I mean that wholeheartedly. Let me explain a bit.

World War I had far-reaching impacts that are still being felt today. It caused the collapse of the Ottoman Empire, and placed incredibly harsh sanctions on Germany that plunged it into a dangerous economic depression. We all know that the economic conditions and nationalist traditions of Germany made it the prime place for a Fascist revolution, but what about the Ottoman Empire? Why is that even important?

The Ottomans were basically a unified Muslim people. They had subjugated the tribes that roamed the areas, and all of them were part of a pseudo-Western civilization. What happened was that, when it collapsed, the Europeans divided up the lands and completely ignored the tribal boundaries that the Ottomans had used to help keep the tribes happy and unified. On top of that, after WW2 finished, the Europeans delegated a portion of the land taken from the Ottomans to the Jewish people. I'm not saying that's a bad move, that's not part of the debate, but those two things together, the destruction of tribal boundaries, and the addition of a group in their lands to lay the blame, directly caused all of the conflict in the Middle East that we see today.

Additionally, WWI instability allowed for the Russian Revolutions to occur in a situation where certain democratic countries, like England and America, wanted Russia to stay in the war while the revolutionaries wanted out. That's why Americans supported the Czar loyalists, who ended up losing to the Communist revolution. The Americans supported the losers, so the winners didn't exactly trust them. Stalin ended up playing on these fears to heighten his power and turn what could have been a Communist state into a totalitarian dictatorship, creating the Cold War as we know it.

So, to recap it all. The assassination of Archduke Ferdinand caused both World Wars, the Holocaust, the invention (and use, twice) of the atomic bomb, widespread and lasting conflict in the Middle East, the destruction of the Kingdom of Ethiopia (let's not forget that, if it weren't for the Fascists, the Ethiopians could easily be a prominent world power), the Cold War, and every little war that was a part of it.

I'm not even going to try adding up the casualties caused by that action, the numbers are too astronomical.

I think there's a common misconception, though, that Germany chose to fight an un-winable war when they decided to help Austria against the Serbians. Germany knew what they were doing. They knew that Russia, who would definitely side with the Serbians, would collapse if put under enough pressure. The Germans were also convinced that they had allies in countries like Italy and Romania, but these countries held out on their alliances and later joined the enemy when offered a substantial payment. Had both Italy and Romania sided with Austria and Germany, this would have been a very different war.

Basically, the Germans just overestimated the strength and numbers of their allies. The Austrians and Ottomans would have done a lot more had they had military commanders of any sort of intelligence; their commanders quite frequently ordered for direct frontal assaults of the most fortified locations possible. Additionally, part of the German strategy for surrounding the French armies backfired when Belgium attempted to remain neutral, and ended up fully resisting the German plans.

Germany also took some unnecessary gambles, specifically when trying to keep the Americans out of the war. Generally, the Americans were evenly split between support for Germany and support for England. That kept them at a gridlock, unable to declare war either way and generally unwilling to interfere on either side. The trick, though, was that some American citizens had been smuggling weapons to both sides of the war. The majority, however, due to preexisting contacts among the already wealthy traders, went to England. Germany recognized that they were getting supplies from America, and allowed for their submarines to blow up anything that was likely holding military supplies for the English. So the Germans shot up some British passenger ships, like the Lusitania, which the Americans condemned because of the loss of American life, claiming that the ship had nothing to do with the war effort. (Interestingly, the Lusitania was later confirmed to have been smuggling munitions, so the Germans were technically in the right). But the real gamble was Germany sending a telegram to Mexico. When the UK caught wind of it and presented it to the Americans, the Mexicans backed off and the Americans made up their minds about who to side with. It wasn't Germany. Oops.

All in all, the Germans could have won it. But the circumstances were pretty terrible for them, and almost every major plan or tactical movement backfired for some reason or another, which usually just came down to being terrible at diplomacy and propaganda. If they had distributed more effective propaganda early on, or had they been more careful with negotiations, they would easily have won, or at least signed a neutral peace treaty.
 
Gone 5ever
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If there was one thing I could go back in time to prevent, it would be this. It was so easily preventable. Almost every major problem in the world has been a result of this war and the aftermath. The previous posts basically covered everything that went wrong so I won't.

The better question is would the world be better off today had this war not happened or was resolved with better terms. I feel inclined to say yes but that would be too shortsighted. Knowing human nature had World War I not happened in 1914, it most likely would've happened sooner or later, thus we would not have witnessed the true destruction of chemical and even nuclear weapons until much later. Decolonization would've been much slower as there would have been much less nationalist revolutions to serve as inspiration and monarchies would still be the most dominant form of government. Whether these are positive or negative depends on your worldview. This is all speculation of course.

Had The Great War not happened we would have just seen a delayed chain of equally horrible events. This does not change the fact that this war was a ridiculous waste of time and lives over some guy getting shot. That is why I will forever hate this war.
 
SAEV DEH WHALEZ!
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World War I was the single-most destructive (and pointless) war in world history. And I mean that wholeheartedly. Let me explain a bit.

World War I had far-reaching impacts that are still being felt today. It caused the collapse of the Ottoman Empire, and placed incredibly harsh sanctions on Germany that plunged it into a dangerous economic depression. We all know that the economic conditions and nationalist traditions of Germany made it the prime place for a Fascist revolution, but what about the Ottoman Empire? Why is that even important?

The Ottomans were basically a unified Muslim people. They had subjugated the tribes that roamed the areas, and all of them were part of a pseudo-Western civilization. What happened was that, when it collapsed, the Europeans divided up the lands and completely ignored the tribal boundaries that the Ottomans had used to help keep the tribes happy and unified. On top of that, after WW2 finished, the Europeans delegated a portion of the land taken from the Ottomans to the Jewish people. I'm not saying that's a bad move, that's not part of the debate, but those two things together, the destruction of tribal boundaries, and the addition of a group in their lands to lay the blame, directly caused all of the conflict in the Middle East that we see today.

Additionally, WWI instability allowed for the Russian Revolutions to occur in a situation where certain democratic countries, like England and America, wanted Russia to stay in the war while the revolutionaries wanted out. That's why Americans supported the Czar loyalists, who ended up losing to the Communist revolution. The Americans supported the losers, so the winners didn't exactly trust them. Stalin ended up playing on these fears to heighten his power and turn what could have been a Communist state into a totalitarian dictatorship, creating the Cold War as we know it.

So, to recap it all. The assassination of Archduke Ferdinand caused both World Wars, the Holocaust, the invention (and use, twice) of the atomic bomb, widespread and lasting conflict in the Middle East, the destruction of the Kingdom of Ethiopia (let's not forget that, if it weren't for the Fascists, the Ethiopians could easily be a prominent world power), the Cold War, and every little war that was a part of it.

I'm not even going to try adding up the casualties caused by that action, the numbers are too astronomical.

I think there's a common misconception, though, that Germany chose to fight an un-winable war when they decided to help Austria against the Serbians. Germany knew what they were doing. They knew that Russia, who would definitely side with the Serbians, would collapse if put under enough pressure. The Germans were also convinced that they had allies in countries like Italy and Romania, but these countries held out on their alliances and later joined the enemy when offered a substantial payment. Had both Italy and Romania sided with Austria and Germany, this would have been a very different war.

Basically, the Germans just overestimated the strength and numbers of their allies. The Austrians and Ottomans would have done a lot more had they had military commanders of any sort of intelligence; their commanders quite frequently ordered for direct frontal assaults of the most fortified locations possible. Additionally, part of the German strategy for surrounding the French armies backfired when Belgium attempted to remain neutral, and ended up fully resisting the German plans.

Germany also took some unnecessary gambles, specifically when trying to keep the Americans out of the war. Generally, the Americans were evenly split between support for Germany and support for England. That kept them at a gridlock, unable to declare war either way and generally unwilling to interfere on either side. The trick, though, was that some American citizens had been smuggling weapons to both sides of the war. The majority, however, due to preexisting contacts among the already wealthy traders, went to England. Germany recognized that they were getting supplies from America, and allowed for their submarines to blow up anything that was likely holding military supplies for the English. So the Germans shot up some British passenger ships, like the Lusitania, which the Americans condemned because of the loss of American life, claiming that the ship had nothing to do with the war effort. (Interestingly, the Lusitania was later confirmed to have been smuggling munitions, so the Germans were technically in the right). But the real gamble was Germany sending a telegram to Mexico. When the UK caught wind of it and presented it to the Americans, the Mexicans backed off and the Americans made up their minds about who to side with. It wasn't Germany. Oops.

All in all, the Germans could have won it. But the circumstances were pretty terrible for them, and almost every major plan or tactical movement backfired for some reason or another, which usually just came down to being terrible at diplomacy and propaganda. If they had distributed more effective propaganda early on, or had they been more careful with negotiations, they would easily have won, or at least signed a neutral peace treaty.
The Ottomans were not really a unified Muslim people. The Turks were on top, and the Arabs, Kurds, and other Muslims were beneath them. I'm a Lebanese Muslim and two of my great-grandfathers fought against the Ottomans. Most Arab Muslims hated the Ottoman Empire with a flaming passion. Even today, in the Arab world, the Turks are loathed (particularly in Syria).

A lot of new countries in Europe came out of WWI. One of them was Poland, which was split three ways before the war. My friend who is half Polish had one Polish great-grandfather who fought in the German Army and one who fought in the Austro-Hungarian Army. One of them was among the Polish Catholics killed in the Holocaust.
 
Last edited:
Goddess
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I would consider Gallipoli as a failure. It was a British plan that went horribly wrong and led to no advantage at all. They took the Turkish troops as weak and both the Australians and New Zealanders lost a lot of men due to horrible British planning. The British seemed out of their depth in military planning and a passage into the Black Sea wouldn't have made much difference in the scheme of things because the Turkish could easily resist.
 
The Darkest Magikarp
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World War I was the single-most destructive (and pointless) war in world history. And I mean that wholeheartedly. Let me explain a bit.

World War I had far-reaching impacts that are still being felt today. It caused the collapse of the Ottoman Empire, and placed incredibly harsh sanctions on Germany that plunged it into a dangerous economic depression. We all know that the economic conditions and nationalist traditions of Germany made it the prime place for a Fascist revolution, but what about the Ottoman Empire? Why is that even important?

The Ottomans were basically a unified Muslim people. They had subjugated the tribes that roamed the areas, and all of them were part of a pseudo-Western civilization. What happened was that, when it collapsed, the Europeans divided up the lands and completely ignored the tribal boundaries that the Ottomans had used to help keep the tribes happy and unified. On top of that, after WW2 finished, the Europeans delegated a portion of the land taken from the Ottomans to the Jewish people. I'm not saying that's a bad move, that's not part of the debate, but those two things together, the destruction of tribal boundaries, and the addition of a group in their lands to lay the blame, directly caused all of the conflict in the Middle East that we see today.

Additionally, WWI instability allowed for the Russian Revolutions to occur in a situation where certain democratic countries, like England and America, wanted Russia to stay in the war while the revolutionaries wanted out. That's why Americans supported the Czar loyalists, who ended up losing to the Communist revolution. The Americans supported the losers, so the winners didn't exactly trust them. Stalin ended up playing on these fears to heighten his power and turn what could have been a Communist state into a totalitarian dictatorship, creating the Cold War as we know it.

So, to recap it all. The assassination of Archduke Ferdinand caused both World Wars, the Holocaust, the invention (and use, twice) of the atomic bomb, widespread and lasting conflict in the Middle East, the destruction of the Kingdom of Ethiopia (let's not forget that, if it weren't for the Fascists, the Ethiopians could easily be a prominent world power), the Cold War, and every little war that was a part of it.

I'm not even going to try adding up the casualties caused by that action, the numbers are too astronomical.

I think there's a common misconception, though, that Germany chose to fight an un-winable war when they decided to help Austria against the Serbians. Germany knew what they were doing. They knew that Russia, who would definitely side with the Serbians, would collapse if put under enough pressure. The Germans were also convinced that they had allies in countries like Italy and Romania, but these countries held out on their alliances and later joined the enemy when offered a substantial payment. Had both Italy and Romania sided with Austria and Germany, this would have been a very different war.

Basically, the Germans just overestimated the strength and numbers of their allies. The Austrians and Ottomans would have done a lot more had they had military commanders of any sort of intelligence; their commanders quite frequently ordered for direct frontal assaults of the most fortified locations possible. Additionally, part of the German strategy for surrounding the French armies backfired when Belgium attempted to remain neutral, and ended up fully resisting the German plans.

Germany also took some unnecessary gambles, specifically when trying to keep the Americans out of the war. Generally, the Americans were evenly split between support for Germany and support for England. That kept them at a gridlock, unable to declare war either way and generally unwilling to interfere on either side. The trick, though, was that some American citizens had been smuggling weapons to both sides of the war. The majority, however, due to preexisting contacts among the already wealthy traders, went to England. Germany recognized that they were getting supplies from America, and allowed for their submarines to blow up anything that was likely holding military supplies for the English. So the Germans shot up some British passenger ships, like the Lusitania, which the Americans condemned because of the loss of American life, claiming that the ship had nothing to do with the war effort. (Interestingly, the Lusitania was later confirmed to have been smuggling munitions, so the Germans were technically in the right). But the real gamble was Germany sending a telegram to Mexico. When the UK caught wind of it and presented it to the Americans, the Mexicans backed off and the Americans made up their minds about who to side with. It wasn't Germany. Oops.

All in all, the Germans could have won it. But the circumstances were pretty terrible for them, and almost every major plan or tactical movement backfired for some reason or another, which usually just came down to being terrible at diplomacy and propaganda. If they had distributed more effective propaganda early on, or had they been more careful with negotiations, they would easily have won, or at least signed a neutral peace treaty.
The Ottomans were not really a unified Muslim people. The Turks were on top, and the Arabs, Kurds, and other Muslims were beneath them. I'm a Lebanese Muslim and two of my great-grandfathers fought against the Ottomans. Most Arab Muslims hated the Ottoman Empire with a flaming passion. Even today, in the Arab world, the Turks are loathed (particularly in Syria).

A lot of new countries in Europe came out of WWI. One of them was Poland, which was split three ways before the war. My friend who is half Polish had one Polish great-grandfather who fought in the German Army and one who fought in the Austro-Hungarian Army. One of them was among the Polish Catholics killed in the Holocaust.
Oh good, someone who knows about this. I always imagined that the Ottoman Empire was a lot like the Austro-Hungarian one, in that there were the ruling ethnic groups subjugating all of the less powerful ethnic groups around them. Is this a fair comparison?

I'm leaning toward not, because as far as I'm aware, there isn't still animosity toward Austria/Hungary from their former territories to the extent that there is animosity toward the Turks in the Middle East. I could be wrong, though.
 
SAEV DEH WHALEZ!
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Messages
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World War I was the single-most destructive (and pointless) war in world history. And I mean that wholeheartedly. Let me explain a bit.

World War I had far-reaching impacts that are still being felt today. It caused the collapse of the Ottoman Empire, and placed incredibly harsh sanctions on Germany that plunged it into a dangerous economic depression. We all know that the economic conditions and nationalist traditions of Germany made it the prime place for a Fascist revolution, but what about the Ottoman Empire? Why is that even important?

The Ottomans were basically a unified Muslim people. They had subjugated the tribes that roamed the areas, and all of them were part of a pseudo-Western civilization. What happened was that, when it collapsed, the Europeans divided up the lands and completely ignored the tribal boundaries that the Ottomans had used to help keep the tribes happy and unified. On top of that, after WW2 finished, the Europeans delegated a portion of the land taken from the Ottomans to the Jewish people. I'm not saying that's a bad move, that's not part of the debate, but those two things together, the destruction of tribal boundaries, and the addition of a group in their lands to lay the blame, directly caused all of the conflict in the Middle East that we see today.

Additionally, WWI instability allowed for the Russian Revolutions to occur in a situation where certain democratic countries, like England and America, wanted Russia to stay in the war while the revolutionaries wanted out. That's why Americans supported the Czar loyalists, who ended up losing to the Communist revolution. The Americans supported the losers, so the winners didn't exactly trust them. Stalin ended up playing on these fears to heighten his power and turn what could have been a Communist state into a totalitarian dictatorship, creating the Cold War as we know it.

So, to recap it all. The assassination of Archduke Ferdinand caused both World Wars, the Holocaust, the invention (and use, twice) of the atomic bomb, widespread and lasting conflict in the Middle East, the destruction of the Kingdom of Ethiopia (let's not forget that, if it weren't for the Fascists, the Ethiopians could easily be a prominent world power), the Cold War, and every little war that was a part of it.

I'm not even going to try adding up the casualties caused by that action, the numbers are too astronomical.

I think there's a common misconception, though, that Germany chose to fight an un-winable war when they decided to help Austria against the Serbians. Germany knew what they were doing. They knew that Russia, who would definitely side with the Serbians, would collapse if put under enough pressure. The Germans were also convinced that they had allies in countries like Italy and Romania, but these countries held out on their alliances and later joined the enemy when offered a substantial payment. Had both Italy and Romania sided with Austria and Germany, this would have been a very different war.

Basically, the Germans just overestimated the strength and numbers of their allies. The Austrians and Ottomans would have done a lot more had they had military commanders of any sort of intelligence; their commanders quite frequently ordered for direct frontal assaults of the most fortified locations possible. Additionally, part of the German strategy for surrounding the French armies backfired when Belgium attempted to remain neutral, and ended up fully resisting the German plans.

Germany also took some unnecessary gambles, specifically when trying to keep the Americans out of the war. Generally, the Americans were evenly split between support for Germany and support for England. That kept them at a gridlock, unable to declare war either way and generally unwilling to interfere on either side. The trick, though, was that some American citizens had been smuggling weapons to both sides of the war. The majority, however, due to preexisting contacts among the already wealthy traders, went to England. Germany recognized that they were getting supplies from America, and allowed for their submarines to blow up anything that was likely holding military supplies for the English. So the Germans shot up some British passenger ships, like the Lusitania, which the Americans condemned because of the loss of American life, claiming that the ship had nothing to do with the war effort. (Interestingly, the Lusitania was later confirmed to have been smuggling munitions, so the Germans were technically in the right). But the real gamble was Germany sending a telegram to Mexico. When the UK caught wind of it and presented it to the Americans, the Mexicans backed off and the Americans made up their minds about who to side with. It wasn't Germany. Oops.

All in all, the Germans could have won it. But the circumstances were pretty terrible for them, and almost every major plan or tactical movement backfired for some reason or another, which usually just came down to being terrible at diplomacy and propaganda. If they had distributed more effective propaganda early on, or had they been more careful with negotiations, they would easily have won, or at least signed a neutral peace treaty.
The Ottomans were not really a unified Muslim people. The Turks were on top, and the Arabs, Kurds, and other Muslims were beneath them. I'm a Lebanese Muslim and two of my great-grandfathers fought against the Ottomans. Most Arab Muslims hated the Ottoman Empire with a flaming passion. Even today, in the Arab world, the Turks are loathed (particularly in Syria).

A lot of new countries in Europe came out of WWI. One of them was Poland, which was split three ways before the war. My friend who is half Polish had one Polish great-grandfather who fought in the German Army and one who fought in the Austro-Hungarian Army. One of them was among the Polish Catholics killed in the Holocaust.
Oh good, someone who knows about this. I always imagined that the Ottoman Empire was a lot like the Austro-Hungarian one, in that there were the ruling ethnic groups subjugating all of the less powerful ethnic groups around them. Is this a fair comparison?

I'm leaning toward not, because as far as I'm aware, there isn't still animosity toward Austria/Hungary from their former territories to the extent that there is animosity toward the Turks in the Middle East. I could be wrong, though.
I actually think it's fair.
 
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