Tag: grande guerra

“A poor man in this world can be done to death in two main ways, by the absolute indifference of his fellows in peacetime or by their homicidal mania when there's a war.”

Louis-Ferdinand Céline, Journey to the End of the Night 

Wilhelm II was born in Berlin on 27 January 1859, with the name of Friedrich Wilhelm Viktor Albrecht von Hohenzollern. She was nephew of Queen Victoria of the United Kingdom and second in line of succession to the Prussian throne. In his destiny there was also the succession to the throne of the German empire, born in 1871. In the same year the son of a tailor from Heidelberg was born whose fate would be curiously crossed with that of the Prussian heir: Friedrich Ebert.
On 15 June 1888, Wilhelm...
The celebretions for the end of the war quickly left room to an uncertain post-war period, made up of bad moods on the part of the losers and winners, intentions of revenge, nationalism and revolutionary attempts. The process of mourning for the millions of dead, wounded or horribly disfigured men guaranteed a twenty year of apparent peace, at the end of which Nazi-Fascism - imposed as a legacy of the First World War - dragged the world into a new, devastating conflict.
At the end of the Great War, the political map of Europe came to a depth modified by revolutions, military defeats and not least by the decisions of the winning powers. The great multiethnic empires - the Austro-Hungarian, the Ottoman, the German and the Russian - disappeared and a series of states based on the principle of nationality emerged in their place. However, peace found the discontent of victors and losers, giving rise to a spiral of tensions and nationalism that twenty years after...
Yesterday I visited the battlefield of last year. The place was scarcely recognisable. Instead of a wilderness of ground torn up by shell, the ground was a garden of wild flowers and tall grasses. Most remarkable of all was the appearance of many thousands of white butterflies which fluttered around. It was as if the souls of the dead soldiers had come to haunt the spot where so many fell. It was eerie to see them. And the silence! It was so still that I could almost hear the beat of the...
Talking to Barrière about the transport to Italy of Austrian prisoners (600 officers and 30,000 soldiers) captured by the Serbs and presently in Albania, I told him that I did not see any reason why we should not keep them in Italy after having overcome all the great difficulties and dangers of men and ships [...]
Sidney Sonnino to Camille Barbière, French Ambassador to Italy on 9 December 1915

Very high percentages of adult males were mobilized by all the major belligerent powers. Being principally of young people in the age of procreation, the enormous losses suffered would have triggered serious problems in the post-war period with real demographic collapses, due to the "unborn".
John Joseph Pershing - the future commander of the American Expeditionary Force - was born on a farm near Laclede (Missouri) on 13 September 1860.
Coming from a well-off family, after his studies, he initially started the career of teacher at the school for Afro-American children in Laclede, and later at the prestigious Truman State University in Kirksville.
In 1882, tired of the rural Missouri, he decided to enter the Westpoint military academy, which he completed without distinguishing in...
The First World War differs from previous conflicts by the large number of prisoners of war that individual states captured and guarded during hostilities. This character of the Great War is also noticeable in the case of the Italian-Austrian front, where Austrians and Germans made prisoners about 600,000 Italian soldiers; at the same time, the soldiers of the Austro-Hungarian army taken prisoner by the Italians were 477,024 according to official statistics, distributed in a myriad of detention...
The term "ace" was used during the First World War and identified the fighter pilots who had shot down more than 5 enemy aircraft. Their exploits were used extensively by propaganda and many of them fell into action, becoming legendary figures.


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