Hey there! Sign in to join this conversationNew here? Join for free
x Turn on thread page Beta

Britain Should Have Fought in the First World War (poll) watch

  • View Poll Results: Britain Should Have Fought in the First World War
    Yes, Britian should have fought the First World War
    No, Britian should not have fought the First World War

    • Thread Starter

    (Original post by ChaoticButterfly)
    That's the problem with OP, for me anyway. None of the reasons for the war you gave impress me much. If I was a peasant, working class person or a more socially conscience privileged person in an imperial power I would rather just let a regime change happen if it was going to happen as long as it would not be that much different to my current one, as opposed to getting slaughtered defending something I don't care for or actively despise. I'd only ever willingly fight if it was to stop a greater evil trampling all over where I live or for something I considered a positive cause. I would have took up arms against Fascists in Spain and for the organisation like the CNT. But to willingly fight in the big imperialist meat grinder of world war 1? Not so much. I;d probably be the soldiers that sang the international across the trenches. Or when hears of the Russian Revolution considers mutiny.

    You need to make that argument (freedom/ democracy) if you want to convince me. The lack of that argument is the problem.
    As I have stated previously, that way of thinking was not around prior to the war. It was very rare to think that way. Socialism wasn't popular till after the war. As I have said, most men (95%) fought for empire, 'Britain', 'duty', and for their family. Very few fought for 'freedom' or democracy, and less fought for some sort of class solidarity.

    You way of thinking is too modern, that it what I am saying. Stop thinking like a modern man/ woman, and think more as a miner or a factory worker. Dont get confused about class concepts and socialism.

    I vote no, but with a large dose of hindsight.

    Although viewed as a conservative war both at the time and with hindsight, the main effect of WWI was to reignite the French Revolution which had been on slow boil since its suppression in 1815. In Russia a Jacobin state emerged and Germany went half way. The other defeated powers were broken up into states too small to defend themselves; these states could only become battlefields and that is precisely what they would become.

    This was worse than the prospect of a German-dominated Europe. The USSR was far more tyrannical than Imperial Germany, and more dangerous. The USSR is a creature of the First World War.

    Worse, by constituting a peace based on ideological/religious concerns rather than balance of power concerns, the WWI settlement guaranteed another war and that war was even worse than WWI itself, as were its consequences.

    If there had been no WWI, or if Germany had won WWI, there is a good chance there would have been no USSR. No USSR means no communist China, no communism in South East Asia, no communist Eastern Europe. Billions of people would have been spared poverty and terror. Although Britain's position would be worsened, it would only have had to have made some foreign policy concessions to the German Empire; I find it very unlikely that Germany would have tried to invade the UK.

    The statesmen of 1914 most likely discounted this damage to the social order. If you ignore it, then it was worth three quarters of a million British dead to preserve a strong France and independent Low Countries.

    (Original post by AlwaysWatching)
    It didn't "event" its own self interest. Germany wasn't a progressive social democracy, and it is naïve to think that they would have even been benevolent dictators on the European continent - explain how it is nonsense?
    I find it fascinating how, in the course of this debate, the words "liberal", "social democrat", and "progressive" are being used interchangeably.

    Germany was the most social democrat country in Europe in 1914. It was considered the world champion of social democracy. This wasn't a mark in its favour in Britain, where social democracy was regarded as 1. a bad thing and 2. an enemy of liberalism. Since 1918 Britain has largely adopted pre-WWI German policies.

    "Progressive" meant communist.

    Britain fought against social democracy for the cause of liberalism, turned half the world communist and itself into a social democracy. Which sounds like a disaster to me.
How are you feeling about your exams?
Useful resources

The Student Room, Get Revising and Marked by Teachers are trading names of The Student Room Group Ltd.

Register Number: 04666380 (England and Wales), VAT No. 806 8067 22 Registered Office: International House, Queens Road, Brighton, BN1 3XE

Write a reply...
Reputation gems: You get these gems as you gain rep from other members for making good contributions and giving helpful advice.