Britain Entering First World War Was ‘Biggest Mistake in Modern History’


According to historian Niall Ferguson, Britain could have lived with German victory and should have stayed out of the war. Claiming that there was no immediate threat to Britain, Britain could have faced a Germany-dominated Europe at a later date on its own terms, instead of rushing in unprepared, which led to catastrophic costs.

“Creating an army more or less from scratch and then sending it into combat against the Germans was a recipe for disastrous losses. And if one asks whether this was the best way for Britain to deal with the challenge posed by imperial Germany, my answer is no. We need of course to feel sympathy for the men like my grandfather who fought in the first world war, because their sufferings were scarcely imaginable. The death toll, which was greater than the second world war, was the most painful thing that Britain has ever experienced in war.”

But, he added, “we should also feel dismay that the leaders, not just of Britain but of the European states, could have taken decisions that led to such an appalling slaughter.”

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