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The Russian Origins of the First World War Hardcover – December 30, 2011
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But what if Fischer's research was incomplete? What if that fact led to mistakes that made nearly all his conclusions only partially correct-or worse yet-outright wrong? That is precisely the argument that Professor Sean McMeekin lays out in compelling fashion in his new narrative `The Russian Origins of the First World War'. In laying out the focus of this work he issues a broadside directed at the current state of the historiography of World War One. He writes, "Understanding of the First World War may be said to have regressed after the Fischer debate taught several generations of historians to pay serious attention only go Germany's war aims (3)". Thus, the focus on his current work is to rectify what he believes to be a serious deficiency in the historical record. In other words Russia's war aims must be examined every bit as exhaustively as those of Imperial Germany. McMeekin believes that "the current consensus about the First World War cannot survive serious scrutiny (5)".
Indeed, the scrutiny that the author applies to the existing documents and historical record is withering in regards to the preconceived views of so many past historians.Read more ›
“In my opinion we must have one main purpose: the taking possession of Constantinople, in order to establish ourselves once and for all on the Straits and to make sure that they remain permanently in our hands. This is in Russia’s interest; and it is to this that our efforts must be directed; everything else that happens on the Balkan peninsula is of secondary significance from our standpoint. We have had enough of seeking popularity at the expense of the interests of Russia. From now on, the Slavs must devote themselves to the service of Russia, not we to theirs.”
Virtually all of the Russo-Turkish wars, beginning in 1776 and ending in 1878, had been fought to loosen the Ottoman grip on Constantinople. For much the same reason, Russia had dabbled in the murky and complex affairs of the Balkans by supporting various intrigues in Bulgaria as well as Slavic independence movements in Bosnia-Herzegovina—then controlled (and finally annexed) by Austria-Hungary. Not so well known or appreciated is how very large the Straits loomed in Russian strategic planning.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
THE RUSSIAN ORIGINS OF THE FIRST WORLD WAR
BELKNAP HARVARD, 2011
HARDCOVER, $29. Read more
This is the worst revisionist history on WWI that I can think of in recent times. Besides Wilhelmine era apologists and even pro Nazi 'stab in the back' revisionists exonerating... Read morePublished 10 months ago by Lance Christopher
A perennial "what if" question is Could the First World War have been avoided? Sadly, the answer is "No". Read morePublished 19 months ago by Rajendra Wall
The title is a bit misleading. Only the first two of the 9-10 chapters address the Russian decision to mobilize. Read morePublished 20 months ago by William Page
Went into this book a bit skeptical, but the author did an excellent job for one clear reason: more sources from this time period from Russian sources than any other books on the... Read morePublished 22 months ago by Teutonik
A well researched WWI history focused on the premise that Russia seduced Germany into WWI so Russia could claim the Dardanelles and gain access to the Mediterranean through the... Read morePublished 23 months ago by ram
"Cui bono?" - "Who profits from it?" This is the ultimate question one should ask when one wonders who brought about the First World War. Read morePublished 23 months ago by Jos