Most Terrible of All Wars
Why...do we worry about history? Julian Corbett writes one ofl the best books in our language upon political and military strategy. All sorts of lessons, some of inestimable value, may be gleaned from it. No one, except perhaps Winston, who matters just now, has ever read it....Obviously, history is written for schoolmasters and armchair strategists. Statesmen and warriors pick their way through the dusk.
-- Reginald Viscount Esher
The sudden turn of events that resulted in the world war during the summer of 1914 came as a great surprise to most Americans. Even nascent internationalists and those who had kept up with the foreign political situation recorded later how stunned they were by the flurry of European ultimata, mobilizations, and declarations of war. This is not to say that intelligent Americans were unaware of European tensions or of the recent fighting in the Balkans but rather that these Americans had grown accustomed to European tension and intrigue. Americans, confident in the inevitability of progress, science, and human ration-