Tuesday, November 5, 2013

The Great War

My daughter, the ten-year-old history buff, asked me about the causes of this war, not an easy question to answer; Laurence M. Vance rightly calls it "folly on scale never before seen" — An Injury to Civilization. Mr. Vance:
    The 110,000 or so American soldiers who died on the battlefields of Europe died for absolutely nothing. They died not while helping to liberate, but while helping to destroy, European civilization, even as the U.S. government was punishing dissent and destroying civil liberties in America. Even without the beginning of the income tax and the Federal Reserve, Woodrow Wilson is one of the most loathsome men to ever occupy the office of U.S. president because of his push for American intervention in World War I. The war should have been the war to end all wars.
I wonder of there is a book that does for this world war what Nicholson Baker's Human Smoke: The Beginnings of World War II, the End of Civilization did for the next one.

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