How should we remember World War One?
Lest we go over the top
The experience of war very much depends on where one happens to be standing at the time. This is true for those whose fate is decided in battle and for those who, having sent them to fight, watch from an expedient hillside. It is also true for those who come later: writers of all descriptions who go on scavenging among the dead and wounded long after they are dust, and base members of the pol
Margaret MacMillan’s ‘The War That Ended Peace’, Paul Ham’s ‘1914’ and David Reynolds’ ‘The Long Shadow’
Re-evaluating World War One
The modern military has a word for a situation in which multiple things go wrong, resulting in the worst possible outcome. They call it a clusterfuck – a perfect word for the concatenation of forces and events that led to the outbreak of World War One.
There were the Balkan Wars of 1912–13, fought over the debris of the Ottoman Empire. There was the perennial dick-swinging of G