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“The last completely ‘normal’ year in history was 1913, the year before World War I began.”—Editorial in the Times-Herald, Washington, D.C
“Increasingly, the 75-year period from 1914 to 1989, covering two world wars and the cold war, is being seen by historians as a single, discrete epoch, a time apart in which much of the world was fighting war, recovering from war or preparing for war.”—The New York Times
“The whole world really blew up about World War I and we still don’t know why. Before then, men thought that utopia was in sight. There was peace and prosperity. Then everything blew up. We’ve been in a state of suspended animation ever since . . . More people have been killed in this century than in all of history.”—Dr. Walker Percy, American Medical News,
More than 50 years after 1914, German statesman Konrad Adenauer wrote: “Security and quiet have disappeared from the lives of men since 1914.”—The West Parker, Cleveland, Ohio
“By all contemporaneous accounts, the world prior to 1914 seemed to be moving irreversibly toward higher levels of civility and civilization; human society seemed perfectible. The nineteenth century had brought an end to the wretched slave trade. Dehumanizing violence seemed on the decline. . . . The pace of global invention had advanced throughout the nineteenth century, bringing railroads, the telephone, the electric light, cinema, the motor car, and household conveniences too numerous to mention. Medical science, improved nutrition, and the mass distribution of potable water had elevated life expectancy . . . The sense of the irreversibility of such progress was universal.” But . . . “World War I was more devastating to civility and civilization than the physically far more destructive World War II: the earlier conflict destroyed an idea. I cannot erase the thought of those pre-World War I years, when the future of mankind appeared unencumbered and without limit.
-The Age of Turbulence: Adventures in a New World, Alan Greenspan
“Historic events are often said to have ‘changed everything.’ In the case of the Great War [1914-1918] this is, for once, true. The war really did change everything: not just borders, not just governments and the fate of nations, but the way people have seen the world and themselves ever since. It became a kind of hole in time, leaving the postwar world permanently disconnected from everything that had come before.”-A World Undone, by G. J. Meyer
“The 1914-18 war that destroyed the 19th century is not over.” What did he mean? He explained: “History doesn’t pay any attention to calendars. The 19th century—defined as a set of beliefs, assumptions, attitudes and morals—did not end on Jan. 1, 1901. It ended in 1914. That’s also when the 20th century, defined the same way, began. . . . “Virtually all of the conflicts that we have been concerned with all of our lives stemmed from that war. Nearly all of the intellectual and cultural currents that we have lived with were born out of that war. . . . “I think it did such damage because it shattered people’s belief that humans can control their destiny. . . . The war disabused people of that belief. No one on either side thought it would turn out the way it did. It destroyed the British and French empires. It killed off the best of a whole generation of British, French and German men. . . . In a short period of time, it killed 11 million people.”
- The Orlando Sentinel
“Before 1914 the monetary and the financial systems were compatible. . . . If one takes August 1914 as marking the dividing line between them, the contrasts between the nineteenth and the twentieth centuries are striking. In many aspects of human affairs there has been a complete reversal of trend. . . . One major reason was the severance of the linkage between the financial system and money with intrinsic value that began in 1914. . . . The breaking of the linkage was a momentous event. . . . 1914 marked a radical, and in the end catastrophic, transformation of that system.” - Ashby Bladen, a senior vice president of The Guardian Life Insurance Company of America
“It is indeed the year 1914 rather than that of Hiroshima which marks the turning point in our time.”—René Albrecht-Carrié, The Scientific Monthly
“Ever since 1914, everybody conscious of trends in the world has been deeply troubled by what has seemed like a fated and predetermined march toward ever greater disaster. Many serious people have come to feel that nothing can be done to avert the plunge towards ruin.”—Bertrand Russell, The New York Times Magazine
“Everything would get better and better. This was the world I was born in. . . . Suddenly, unexpectedly, one morning in 1914 the whole thing came to an end.”—British statesman Harold Macmillan, The New York Times,
“In 1914 the world lost a coherence which it has not managed to recapture since. . . . This has been a time of extraordinary disorder and violence, both across national frontiers and within them.”—The Economist,
Originally posted by MarkusMaximus
Jehovah's Witnesses (Bible Students) predicted 1914 would be the time when Satan was finally and permanently cast from heaven.
Always found that interesting.
Originally posted by Tamahu
And the Nation of Islam teachings say that 1914 was the beginning of the end of the devil's reign.
Originally posted by DISRAELI
reply to post by Blue_Jay33
Have you read Barbara Tuchman's books?
"The Guns of August"- about the first month.
"The Proud Tower"- about the previous generation.
Excellent background reading.
While the First World War was still underway, a number of governments and groups had already started developing plans to change the way international relations were carried out to try to prevent another such conflict. United States President Woodrow Wilson and his adviser Colonel Edward M. House enthusiastically promoted the idea of the League as a means of avoiding any repetition of the bloodshed of the First World War, and the creation of the League was a centrepiece of Wilson's Fourteen Points for Peace. Specifically the final point stated: "A general association of nations must be formed under specific covenants for the purpose of affording mutual guarantees of political independence and territorial integrity to great and small states alike."
Before drafting the specific terms of his peace deal, Wilson recruited a team led by Colonel House to compile information deemed pertinent in assessing Europe’s geo-political situation. In early January 1918, Wilson summoned House to Washington and the two began hammering out, in complete secrecy, the president’s first address on the League of Nations, which was delivered to Congress on 8 January 1918.Wilson's final plans for the League were strongly influenced by South African Prime Minister Jan Smuts (served as a General in World War I), who in 1918 had published a treatise entitled The League of Nations: A Practical Suggestion. According to F. S. Crafford, Wilson adopted "both the ideas and the style" of Smuts.
On 8 July 1919, Wilson returned to the United States and embarked on a nation-wide campaign to secure the support of the American people for their country’s entry into the League. On 10 July, Wilson addressed the Senate, declaring that "a new role and a new responsibility have come to this great nation that we honor and which we would all wish to lift to yet higher levels of service and achievement". Support, particularly from Republicans, was scanty at best.