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The Canadian, American and British Experience 1914-1918, 1939-1945
The two World Wars placed unprecedented demands on their participants and had a profound impact on many aspects of national life. The mobilization of human and material resources for total war by three nations in the twentieth century was discussed at the Seventh Royal Military College Military History Symposium in March 1980. In this volume of essays from the Symposium, Arthur Marwick offers a general overview of the problems and consequences of organizing society for total war, while other contributors examine such specific themes as mobilizing international finance for the First World WTar (Kathleen Burk), organizing Canadian war production in World War I and World War II (Michael Bliss and Robert Bothwell, respectively), the political implications of organizing American society for war from 1917 to 1945 (Robert Cuff), and the establishment and expansion of wartime British intelligence services in the two World Wars (Christopher Andrew).
The essays will be of interest to historians, political scientists, professional soldiers, and readers interested in the story of the two World Wars and the social and cultural aspects of those conflicts.
The Roots of World War I and the Risk of U.S.-China Conflict
The Rhodesia Native Regiment and the East Africa Campaign of the First World War
No Insignificant Part: The Rhodesia Native Regiment and the East Africa Campaign of the First World War is the first history of the only primarily African military unit from Zimbabwe to fight in the First World War. Recruited from the migrant labour network, most African soldiers in the RNR were originally miners or farm workers from what are now Zimbabwe, Zambia, Mozambique, and Malawi. Like others across the world, they joined the army for a variety of reason, chief among them a desire to escape low pay and horrible working conditions.
The RNR participated in some of the key engagements of the German East Africa campaign’s later phase, subsisting on extremely meager rations and suffering from tropical diseases and exhaustion. Because they were commanded by a small group of European officers, most of whom were seconded from the Native Affairs Department and the British South Africa Police, the regiment was dominated by racism. It was not unusual for black soldiers, but never white ones, to be publicly flogged for alleged theft or insubordination. Although it remained in the field longer than all-white units and some of its members received some of Britain’s highest decorations, the Rhodesia Native Regiment was quickly disbanded after the war and conveniently forgotten by the colonial establishment. Southern Rhodesias white settler minority, partly on the strength of its wartime sacrifice, was given political control of the territory through a racially exclusive form of self-government, but black RNR veterans received little support or recognition.
No Insignificant Part takes a new look at an old campaign and will appeal to scholars of African or military history interested in the First World War.
A New History of America's Entry into World War I
When war broke out in Europe in 1914, political leaders in the United States were swayed by popular opinion to remain neutral; yet less than three years later, the nation declared war on Germany. In Nothing Less Than War: A New History of America’s Entry into World War I, Justus D. Doenecke examines the clash of opinions over the war during this transformative period and offers a fresh perspective on America’s decision to enter World War I. Doenecke reappraises the public and private diplomacy of President Woodrow Wilson and his closest advisors and explores in great depth the response of Congress to the war. He also investigates the debates that raged in the popular media and among citizen groups that sprang up across the country as the U.S. economy was threatened by European blockades and as Americans died on ships sunk by German U-boats. The decision to engage in battle ultimately belonged to Wilson, but as Doenecke demonstrates, Wilson’s choice was not made in isolation. Nothing Less Than War provides a comprehensive examination of America’s internal political climate and its changing international role during the seminal period of 1914–1917.
The German Conquest of the Baltic Islands
In October 1917, an invasion force of some 25,000 German soldiers, accompanied by a flotilla of 10 dreadnoughts, 350 other vessels, a half-dozen zeppelins, and 80 aircraft, attacked the Baltic islands of Dago, Osel, and Moon at the head of the Gulf of Riga. It proved to be the most successful amphibious operation of World War I. The three islands fell, the Gulf was opened to German warships and was now a threat to Russian naval bases in the Gulf of Finland, and 20,000 Russians were captured. The invasion proved to be the last major operation in the East. Although the invasion had achieved its objectives and placed the Germans in an excellent position for the resumption of warfare in the spring, within three weeks of the operation, the Bolsheviks took power in Russia (November 7, 1917) and Albion faded into obscurity as the war in the East came to a slow end.
This book examines the intrusion of imperialist modes of thought into the domestic politics of the Edwardian period and the war years. The author analyzes the fusion of social-imperialist ideology with the Lloyd George insurgency in the Liberal Party and reinforces the hypothesis that European imperialism in this era aligned itself with progressive Liberalism to form the chief defense against rising democratic and socialist forces. Major events of the war years such as the collapse of the Liberal Party and the dispute over war aims are shown to be the products of the continuing conflict between these forces rather than merely the result of the circumstances of war.
The author describes the development of the body of social-imperialist ideas and strategies between the Boer War and the formation of the Lloyd George Coalition of 1916. The political course of the Coalition idea is traced past the crisis of 1910 into the war years and the debate over plans for reconstruction. Thus, the Coalition of 1916 is seen mainly as an outgrowth of the prewar political crisis—a device originally designed as a response to domestic issues and adapted only later to the pressures of war. This original interpretation of the Coalition and its origins establishes the historical significance of social imperialism and places Lloyd George and the British right in new perspective.
Originally published in 1975.
The Princeton Legacy Library uses the latest print-on-demand technology to again make available previously out-of-print books from the distinguished backlist of Princeton University Press. These paperback editions preserve the original texts of these important books while presenting them in durable paperback editions. The goal of the Princeton Legacy Library is to vastly increase access to the rich scholarly heritage found in the thousands of books published by Princeton University Press since its founding in 1905.
Verdun to Vichy
Few figures in modern French history have aroused more controversy than Marshal Philippe PTtain, who rose from obscurity to great fame in the First World War only to fall into infamy during the dark days of Nazi occupation in World War II. PTtainÆs brilliant theories of firepower and flexible defense, as well as his deep empathy for the soldiers of France and the horrific trials they endured on a daily basis, mark him as one of the greatest Allied generals of World War I. Yet today he is best remembered as the nearly senile marshal who was handed the reins of power in France in the midst of the disastrous 1940 campaign and tasked with seeking terms from Nazi Germany. His leadership of Vichy France from 1940 to 1944 and his postwar conviction of treason and lifetime exile to the Ile d'Yeu made him a scapegoat for the nation.
This later perception forever tainted PTtainÆs military reputation as a soldier who served France his entire life and led the French Army through the crucible of Verdun, the morale crisis of 1917, and on to final victory in the Great War. He was despised for his actions as an octogenarian in June 1940. With the bulk of the French Army already destroyed and Paris itself wide-open to attack, PTtain, then eighty-four, immediately sought an armistice with Germany to halt further bloodshed. While others fled, PTtain took what he considered the braver course by staying and doing what he could to safeguard the remnants of his army and his nation. So began his descent into collaboration, treason, and the destruction of all that he had accomplished and stood for throughout his life.
World War I Posters and Visual Culture
The 1916 Austro-German Campaign in Romania
In contrast to the trench-war deadlock on the Western Front, combat in Romania and Transylvania in 1916 foreshadowed the lightning warfare of WWII. When Romania joined the Allies and invaded Transylvania without warning, the Germans responded by unleashing a campaign of bold, rapid infantry movements, with cavalry providing cover or pursuing the crushed foe. Hitting where least expected and advancing before the Romanians could react—even bombing their capital from a Zeppelin soon after war was declared—the Germans and Austrians poured over the formidable Transylvanian Alps onto the plains of Walachia, rolling up the Romanian army from west to east, and driving the shattered remnants into Russia. Prelude to Blitzkrieg tells the story of this largely ignored campaign to determine why it did not devolve into the mud and misery of trench warfare, so ubiquitous elsewhere.