Jump to content

Tonight when you turn off your lights...


 Share

Recommended Posts

...remember that 100 years ago tonight, "the lights went out all over Europe" on the last day of peace. The world is still waiting for the lights to come back on in many places.

July 27: Italy launches global music event to remember Europe's last hours of peace on this day in 1914

"Events start in Italy with a lone trumpeter playing ‘Silenzio’ (equivalent to the ‘Last Post’)."

I hope someone posts a video of this to YouTube.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Rick,

Good post, A bit depressing when you look at the news headlines recently, you think we might have learned something but apparently not.

Jock :(

I completely agree, Jock, regarding the headlines. Take a look at Brian's latest blog for more discussion of this very point.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Rick,

Good post, A bit depressing when you look at the news headlines recently, you think we might have learned something but apparently not.

Jock :(

Agree Jock we haven't learn't a darn thing.

Eric

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Blimey! Actually the words were spoken August 3rd we aren't in it yet.

Eric

Actually, there is some contention that the words were never actually spoken at all.

But with Austria-Hungary declaring war on 28 July, Germany mobilizing on 30 July with Russia declaring war on 31 July in response, German declaring war on 1 August and occupying Luxembourg on 2 August, we were well "in it" days before Sir Edward Grey, UK Foreign Secretary, allegedly spoke the words on 3 Aug.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Actually, there is some contention that the words were never actually spoken at all.

But with Austria-Hungary declaring war on 28 July, Germany mobilizing on 30 July with Russia declaring war on 31 July in response, German declaring war on 1 August and occupying Luxembourg on 2 August, we were well "in it" days before Sir Edward Grey, UK Foreign Secretary, allegedly spoke the words on 3 Aug.

Well I guess it could have been uttered by Grey's housekeeper because he'd forgotten to pay the bill :) but its well documented and witnessed as having been spoken by Edward Grey as the ultimatum was running out over Germany entering and not withdrawing from Belgium.

They are some important points to consider as a prelude: The July Crisis not least of which July holidays the Kaiser himself broke off and rushed back having on July 28th hoped to continue mediation between Austria and Serbia at Belgrade. Austria went from a state of war to an escalation when they shelled Belgrade on the 29th.

Contrary to revisionists and modern media pc bs The Great War didn't 'spark' with some nut on a street corner the fuse leads back to the dismissal of Bismarck and Queen Victoria relenting to the same banking magnets towards the end of her reign that promised Wilhelm a Navel power to match that of England.

Europe should have listened to its Grandparents: Otto von Bismarck and Queen Victoria.

Eric

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Well I guess it could have been uttered by Grey's housekeeper because he'd forgotten to pay the bill :) but its well documented and witnessed as having been spoken by Edward Grey as the ultimatum was running out over Germany entering and not withdrawing from Belgium.

Eric

I would hardly call Grey's own memoirs "well documented." There is no diary. There is only one witness.

There were only two people in Grey's office that evening. Himself and, his friend, John Spender, the editor of the Westminster Gazette. (Of course, a newspaper editor would never "stretch" the truth or spin a tale. Or would he?) The quote was not well known until Grey himself put it in his memoirs in 1925. (Hmmm.) And the "witness" didn't say anything about it until 1927, two years after the memoirs were published.

Don't get me wrong. It's a great statement. And will inspire poignant commemorations on 3 August. According to The Guardian: "The lamps will go out in the Foreign Office itself: all the lights will be turned out except one in a window overlooking the street, and another overlooking St James's Park."

But...like many things...there is a certain bit of lore.

As for the spark - long fuse - etc. I disagree - in part. Please, join the most recent GMIC discussion in Brian Wolfe's blog.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I read it to understand fully the events leading up to the war you have to begin with Bismarck and Political Europe 19th century I studied it in the mid 60's after recently buying an 8 volume set on the war it all came flooding back written in conveniently shortened articles by historical researchers and noted scholars.

Anyway I'm already into the battles....again. :)

Eric

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Anyway I'm already into the battles....again. :)

Eric

I think this will be the case for most people with the Centenary. The anniversary of the battles will get more attention.

I think this is unfortunate, however. Even if the "terrible carnage and lost of life" is commemorated, as a society we learn very little from this approach. To avoid the "lamps going out again," we must study, learn, adapt, and change based upon the lessons of the political causes of conflict. Fighting a war is "easy." Avoiding a war is darn near impossible - as the historical record and the character of mankind shows. Study of the battles only provides lessons for more efficient fighting in the future. Study of the causes provides for more efficient diplomacy and policy in the future.

Let's go back a bit further in time and remember the theories of Clausewitz:

War resides in the social realm. War is merely the continuation of politics by other means.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I agree that the individual battles will probably be the rallying points... The Somme for the British, Verdun for the French (and everyone else)... The formal ceremony at the Hartmannsweilerkopf had apparently one deficit.... French and German Authorities... but not enough space for the members of the French and German members of the Hartmannsweilerkopf ;-)

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Eric, yes, I am a citizen of the United States. I guess that makes me a North American. (Not sure what that has to do with the discussion.) And I've spent time living in Europe if that matters. Why?

Because usually when I disagree with an American I get banned! :lol:

I watched 5mins of the vid after finding a 'little X' turned the sound on! so far it reminds me of revisionist clap trap usually written by Officer Polly snobs sorry I'll try another 5-10mins later its about all I can stomach per sitting without smashing this computer with a hammer,the title itself is a warning for me to control me anger all this BBC stuff is under Adrian van Klaveren there's another red flag but I'll try.

Irish you must admit it is so typical Germany bad We Good come on its not that simple! I don't like this Hastings dude or his suit either its the way he talks us limeys have had it with these plum in the mouth turkey lecturers he reminds me of school when one only leaves five seconds at the end of a lecture "Any Questions?" Bah!.

Thats me first five mins review lol! so far.

Eric

Link to comment
Share on other sites

"I would hardly call Grey's own memoirs "well documented." There is no diary. There is only one witness.

There were only two people in Grey's office that evening. Himself and, his friend, John Spender, the editor of the Westminster Gazette. (Of course, a newspaper editor would never "stretch" the truth or spin a tale. Or would he?) The quote was not well known until Grey himself put it in his memoirs in 1925. (Hmmm.) And the "witness" didn't say anything about it until 1927, two years after the memoirs were published."

Grey's memoirs written in the mid-1920's are self-serving. He tries to give the impression that he was out of the loop with regards to pre-war plans and decisions made by the RN and British Army, when the actual facts suggest otherwise.

There is a trilogy of books written by Geoffrey Miller, that focuses on British naval thinking in the years leading up to WWI.

Straits Trilogy : The Millstone

Chapter 17 of "The Millstone" specifically looks at Grey's thoughts, and actions between 1905 and the British declation of war on Germany in 1914. Miller makes a compelling case against Grey's pretense that he was "out of the loop" regarding pre-war British military thinking and planning, and that he had to be aware of the implications of his talks with the French about pre-war Anglo-French naval dispositions, the pledge to Cambon to guard the French coast along the Channel (aka "La Manche") in the event of German naval forces appearing there, etc.

Edited by Les
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Very interesting Les thanks and the many links available from the names places nations etc. Blimey it would take a lifetime to study everything even before the first shot! few years ago a chum recommended Liddell Hart's archives at King's College I just noticed the link under Mark Kerr, soo much stuff out there..

Cheers

Link to comment
Share on other sites

to get back to the original video posted, I found it quite moving and a nice piece of music, it moved me greatly. The fact that many others sitting around the field obviously thought so also.

We can all quote and point fingers at who started it all and who is therefore at fault, but in the end it was about commemorating the countless lives needlessly destroyed in the end, politicians and Kings start wars, but It's the people that have to fight them.

It is somehow comforting to think that 100 years after the event there are people who take the time to remember the donkeys led by Lions

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Hallo Eric, you are of course quite right, I got it in the wrong order, I remember reading a book many years ago of the same title (Maybe by Clark as you mention), about the Lions being led to slaughter by the Donkeys who ordered them to go. Here it doesn't matter if they were Brits, "Huns", French, Russian Americans etc, they were ordered to do so, Then, any "Lack of moral fibre or cowardice in the face of the enemy" was rewarded by a firing squad, at least nowadays it is acknowledged as post traumatic stress disorder, maybe in some ways the world has moved on slightly, maybe not.

Here I am reminded of that quite remarkable day, Christmas day 1914 when opposing "Lions" stopped and thought and came together in "No-mans land", exchanged gifts and banter (played football) and maybe realised that the other guys weren't actually as bad as they'd been told they were. This immediately raised alarm bells with the Donkeys, who were vehement in destroying any fraternisation with the "Enemy", but in the end who's enemy

Regards

Alex K

Edited by Alex K
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

 Share

  • Blog Comments

    • As a theology student my professor, a much published former Naval chaplain, set us an essay, saying that if we could answer that successfully we would be guaranteed  a good degree "Which of the gospel writers was the biggest liar, discuss."   I got a good mark, but  don't want to be burned for heresy.   P
    • As my father used to say: "Tain't so much Pappy's a liar - he just remembers big."  
    • Brian: First, let me say that I always enjoy reading your blog and your "spot on" comments.  Another fine topic with such a broad expansion into so many different facets.  I had watched this a week or two ago and when reading your blog, it reminded me of this great quote.   There is a great video on the origins of "Who was Murphy in Murphy's Law"   Anyway, about mid way through this video, there is this great quote and I think it sums it up quite well to your statem
    • I've received word from the Curator that she has permission to re-open this summer.   We're already making plans for a November event at the Museum.   Michael
    • I recall I did the same on hot days at Old Fort York back in 1973-74 - wool uniforms, and at 90F they would let you take your backpack off.   Michael
×
×
  • Create New...