99 Years
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28-07-2013, 09:30 PM
99 Years
Now, I'm a few hours late on this, BUT - a few contemplative moments are rather in order, lest we forget the inaugural and precursory cataclysm of the 20th century.

99 years and 1 month ago, on June 28th, the Archduke Franz Ferdinand was assassinated in Sarajevo.

99 years ago this morning, of July 28th - as of 11 AM local time, the Austro-Hungarian empire was at war with Serbia.

Plans for mediation fizzled out over the next 72 hours as mobilization began in Russia, Germany, and France.

Germany declared war on Russia on August 1; they declared war on France and the UK on the 3rd and 4th respectively. Within the next few days mutual declarations rounded out the state of war between France and Britain and Russia, and Germany and Austria. Most of the rest of the world was eventually drawn in.

Five years later there were tens of millions dead and tens of millions yet dying, and the world was unrecognizable. Of the conventional 8 pre-war great powers, four disintegrated, three were devastated, and one triumphant; one more was newly minted.

Canada's pre-war military comprised around 3,000 men. By war's end over 600,000 had served.

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28-07-2013, 11:24 PM
RE: 99 Years
I was just thinking the other day about this, how it's going to be 100 years this time next year.
WW1 I think is under-studied. All the attention goes to WW2. I think it's fair enough though that WW2 get's all the attention, the end of WW2 signifies a huge change in era.

BUT in saying that, I do think WW1 get's forgotten.
It was still a significant war, as you mention, 10's of millions died as a result. Primarily, IMO, due to a combination of bad politics and horrible general leadership. What's that? The first 6 waves of men who casually walked across no-mans land got mowed down by machine fire in the first 5seconds? Oh well, let's send another 6!
It was disaster after disaster after disaster. Generals should have been hung for the shit they pulled.

In saying that, politically it was an extremely interesting time period.
You have to understand the previous.. 100-ish years to understand why it happened in the first place.
The assassination of what's his face was not the cause of WW1, it was merely the excuse.

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28-07-2013, 11:37 PM
RE: 99 Years
Didn't they call WW1 the war to end all wars?

You're both right. I think that's why people went around recording the memories of WW2. So those stories won't be forgotten completely.


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29-07-2013, 12:05 AM
RE: 99 Years
(28-07-2013 11:37 PM)Momsurroundedbyboys Wrote:  Didn't they call WW1 the war to end all wars?

You're both right. I think that's why people went around recording the memories of WW2. So those stories won't be forgotten completely.

Yea, it was called the Great War.
It was said to be the war to end all wars.
I think politically it did in the sense that it ended the political instability in Europe between the major powers in the sense of the instability during the 1700-1800-early 1900's. HOWEVER, it didn't foresee Hitler... a revenge bound patriot.
I think WW2 was interesting in the sense that it occurred strictly because of two reasons. 1) Too much of it's land was stripped from it at the end of WW1.
And 2) Simply, the wrong person came into power.

Both of which never would have occurred if WW1 never happened.
However, if WW1 never happened then the political instability between the major powers of Europe would still exist, and perhaps it would have remained into the nuclear age where the results would be... well you can imagine.


[boring history lesson]Really, if you wanna blame WW1/WW2 on anybody, then you simply need to blame it on King Louis XVI. He is the man that as a result of his actions, all the wars in the Europe that happened from Napoleonic times to WW2, happened because of him.
If he had been a good King, if he cared for his people then France never would have revolted against him and over thrown the Monarchy. As a result, French generals would have remained incompetent as they would have remained as positions for only the aristocracy. As a result, the greatest man to ever live, Napoleon Bonaparte, never would have had the opportunity to kick ass.
The French revolution overthrew the monarchy (as you'll know or at least should know). This was a time where everyone was a monarchy (except USA because they had to go and be difficult). UK, Prussia, Austria, Russia, Spain, Portugal, Italian States, German States, Switzerland, Sweden, Netherlands, Ottoman Empire.
Europe was just coming out of the feudal era. The Monarchy still had power. It was absolute like 300 years prior, but it was still very dominate.
So when the French people overthrew the monarchy and literally cut off their heads, all of Europe shit their pants. They literally dropped a log.
What this meant for France is that, while it was the dominate Europe power by some margin, it sure as fuck didn't have any friends...
Militarily it also left the army without generals, because all the generals and officers etc.. were aristocrats and they either fled or were killed. As such this allowed promotion due to skill. This fact alone gave France a huge edge.
This is what allowed Napoleon to rise to power. He went from an officer of a cannon, to being in charge of the army in Italy, to in charge of the army, to emperor of France.
Long story short, France kicks ass but eventually can't off everyone.
Another long story short and France owns land here and there, and Prussia wants land that France now owns so that causes a problem, blah blah huge power instability in Europe.
So... the time WW1 comes around, Germany wants a piece of France, France and the UK just want to stay the fuck out and Austria wants Serbia. Blah blah blah, skip a bit, the Duke get's shot and Austria-Hungary see's this as a good excuse to attack Serbia, WW1.[/lesson]

So as you can see, if France had not had a revolution, the Napoleonic wars never would have started and the political situation in Europe would have been much mellower then what it was after the Napoleonic wars.

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29-07-2013, 12:34 AM
RE: 99 Years
I would argue that WW1 isn't understudied or forgotten, but it's just overshadowed by WW2.

WW1 was the death throw of imperialist systems and monarchism. WW2 was the violent birth of nationalism, ideology replacing divinity in motivating entire populations, and the industrialization of mass slaughter, as well as the birth of the military industrial complex. Along with rearranging the global power structures.
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29-07-2013, 01:05 AM
RE: 99 Years
(29-07-2013 12:05 AM)earmuffs Wrote:  
(28-07-2013 11:37 PM)Momsurroundedbyboys Wrote:  Didn't they call WW1 the war to end all wars?

You're both right. I think that's why people went around recording the memories of WW2. So those stories won't be forgotten completely.

Yea, it was called the Great War.
It was said to be the war to end all wars.
I think politically it did in the sense that it ended the political instability in Europe between the major powers in the sense of the instability during the 1700-1800-early 1900's. HOWEVER, it didn't foresee Hitler... a revenge bound patriot.
I think WW2 was interesting in the sense that it occurred strictly because of two reasons. 1) Too much of it's land was stripped from it at the end of WW1.
And 2) Simply, the wrong person came into power.

Both of which never would have occurred if WW1 never happened.
However, if WW1 never happened then the political instability between the major powers of Europe would still exist, and perhaps it would have remained into the nuclear age where the results would be... well you can imagine.


[boring history lesson]Really, if you wanna blame WW1/WW2 on anybody, then you simply need to blame it on King Louis XVI. He is the man that as a result of his actions, all the wars in the Europe that happened from Napoleonic times to WW2, happened because of him.
If he had been a good King, if he cared for his people then France never would have revolted against him and over thrown the Monarchy. As a result, French generals would have remained incompetent as they would have remained as positions for only the aristocracy. As a result, the greatest man to ever live, Napoleon Bonaparte, never would have had the opportunity to kick ass.
The French revolution overthrew the monarchy (as you'll know or at least should know). This was a time where everyone was a monarchy (except USA because they had to go and be difficult). UK, Prussia, Austria, Russia, Spain, Portugal, Italian States, German States, Switzerland, Sweden, Netherlands, Ottoman Empire.
Europe was just coming out of the feudal era. The Monarchy still had power. It was absolute like 300 years prior, but it was still very dominate.
So when the French people overthrew the monarchy and literally cut off their heads, all of Europe shit their pants. They literally dropped a log.
What this meant for France is that, while it was the dominate Europe power by some margin, it sure as fuck didn't have any friends...
Militarily it also left the army without generals, because all the generals and officers etc.. were aristocrats and they either fled or were killed. As such this allowed promotion due to skill. This fact alone gave France a huge edge.
This is what allowed Napoleon to rise to power. He went from an officer of a cannon, to being in charge of the army in Italy, to in charge of the army, to emperor of France.
Long story short, France kicks ass but eventually can't off everyone.
Another long story short and France owns land here and there, and Prussia wants land that France now owns so that causes a problem, blah blah huge power instability in Europe.
So... the time WW1 comes around, Germany wants a piece of France, France and the UK just want to stay the fuck out and Austria wants Serbia. Blah blah blah, skip a bit, the Duke get's shot and Austria-Hungary see's this as a good excuse to attack Serbia, WW1.[/lesson]

So as you can see, if France had not had a revolution, the Napoleonic wars never would have started and the political situation in Europe would have been much mellower then what it was after the Napoleonic wars.

Thanks Muffs. Your history lesson was fine. Smile


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29-07-2013, 01:40 AM
RE: 99 Years
The thing that intrigues me most of the WW1 is the combination of modern weaponry used alongside with cavalry. Last war to use cavalry in fact .

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29-07-2013, 03:06 AM
RE: 99 Years
(29-07-2013 01:40 AM)WeasleyFromTheShire Wrote:  The thing that intrigues me most of the WW1 is the combination of modern weaponry used alongside with cavalry. Last war to use cavalry in fact .

No it wasn't, they were still used to some degree in WW2.
The Polish army for example.

Cavalry became rather obsolete anyway by the time of mass gunpowder and long pikes.
Once upon a time Cavalry would have been the power behind an army, the French during the 100 year war for example, their cavalry was feared and very powerful (until it got owned by the mud at Crecy). But once someone thought, "hey let's just shove some big sticks in the ground", they became very much a support unit, hitting enemy flanks that were already engaged with infantry, or running down routing enemies.
As seen during the Napoleonic wars for example.

The problem cavalry units faced was that someone came along and invented the engine and so horse quickly became outdated technology.
They certainly still have their uses even today however, in a modern army.
Afterall, they eat, they don't require fuel to fuel. And they don't require maintenance in the same sense as a vehicle. Makes them the perfect transport in desert situations such as Afghanistan when you're a gorilla terrorist for example.

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29-07-2013, 03:22 AM
RE: 99 Years
(29-07-2013 03:06 AM)earmuffs Wrote:  
(29-07-2013 01:40 AM)WeasleyFromTheShire Wrote:  The thing that intrigues me most of the WW1 is the combination of modern weaponry used alongside with cavalry. Last war to use cavalry in fact .

No it wasn't, they were still used to some degree in WW2.
The Polish army for example.

Cavalry became rather obsolete anyway by the time of mass gunpowder and long pikes.
Once upon a time Cavalry would have been the power behind an army, the French during the 100 year war for example, their cavalry was feared and very powerful (until it got owned by the mud at Crecy). But once someone thought, "hey let's just shove some big sticks in the ground", they became very much a support unit, hitting enemy flanks that were already engaged with infantry, or running down routing enemies.
As seen during the Napoleonic wars for example.

The problem cavalry units faced was that someone came along and invented the engine and so horse quickly became outdated technology.
They certainly still have their uses even today however, in a modern army.
Afterall, they eat, they don't require fuel to fuel. And they don't require maintenance in the same sense as a vehicle. Makes them the perfect transport in desert situations such as Afghanistan when you're a gorilla terrorist for example.

The question is, would any governments be smart enough to use them today ? I could see it in Afghanistan as you mentioned, but you must think of water needed while traveling at a pace for war in such a hot area.

" My friends. You bow to no one. " - Aragorn

"A man is accepted into a church for what he believes and he is turned out for what he knows. " — Samuel Clemens

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29-07-2013, 03:40 AM
RE: 99 Years
(29-07-2013 03:22 AM)WeasleyFromTheShire Wrote:  
(29-07-2013 03:06 AM)earmuffs Wrote:  No it wasn't, they were still used to some degree in WW2.
The Polish army for example.

Cavalry became rather obsolete anyway by the time of mass gunpowder and long pikes.
Once upon a time Cavalry would have been the power behind an army, the French during the 100 year war for example, their cavalry was feared and very powerful (until it got owned by the mud at Crecy). But once someone thought, "hey let's just shove some big sticks in the ground", they became very much a support unit, hitting enemy flanks that were already engaged with infantry, or running down routing enemies.
As seen during the Napoleonic wars for example.

The problem cavalry units faced was that someone came along and invented the engine and so horse quickly became outdated technology.
They certainly still have their uses even today however, in a modern army.
Afterall, they eat, they don't require fuel to fuel. And they don't require maintenance in the same sense as a vehicle. Makes them the perfect transport in desert situations such as Afghanistan when you're a gorilla terrorist for example.

The question is, would any governments be smart enough to use them today ? I could see it in Afghanistan as you mentioned, but you must think of water needed while traveling at a pace for war in such a hot area.

US special forces in Afghanistan use horses in the remote mountains. You have to there is no way to get a vehicle up in those (it is part of the Himalayas after all).

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