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World War One

               World War One Film Clips


America Commits Itself to the War (Literary Digest, 1928)

In writing a piece for LA REVUE MONDIALE ten years after the Armistice, Stéphane Lauzanne (1887 - 1928), Editor-in-Chief of the semi-official PARIS MATIN wrote a few bitter-sweet words about the American character and how it was both a hindrance and a benefit to the Allies in the war. Yet he was full of praise when he recalled the bold and forward-thinking manner in which America entered the war and committed both blood and treasure:

"...all America sees far ahead and sees on a grand scale...when America entered the war, it did not say: 'Let us get a few regiments together, give some money to our allies, and send some bushels of wheat to various ports.' No, America envisioned the matter on a big scale. Men were recruited by the millions, and the money to be sent to the Allies was calculated in the millions. The wheat for Europe was grouped in millions of bushels. The material necessary for construction of sixteen great camps was gathered in millions of cubic yards. If America had not seen the problem on this grand scale, would the war have ended as quickly?"

Click here to read an interview with the World War I American fighter pilot Eddy Rickenbacker.

 

The Power of Positive Thought in Military Training (Outing Magazine, 1918)

The power of positive thinking is one of the necessary elements that has been ingrained within the psyche of every U.S. Army recruit for at least the past 100 years. Positive thought is the topic of this 1918 article about the wartime training of U.S. Army officer cadets at Camp Grant, Illinois, by Major Herman J. Koehler (1859 – 1927), who believed deeply that "there is no limit to human endurance".

Read what the U.S. Army psychologists had to say about courage.

 

Secretary of War Newton Baker Visits the Front Trenches (New York Times, 1918)

Attached is a front page story from a 1918 NEW YORK TIMES that covered the important visit Secretary of War Newton Baker (1871 – 1937) had made to the American front line trenches during his World War I tenure at the Department of War. During this trip the former Ohio Governor donned trench coat, helmet and gas-mask while chatting it up with the Doughboys.

Click here to read an article from 1927 by General Pershing regarding the American cemeteries in Europe.

 

The Ground Taken by the German Armies (New York Times, 1915)

Here is a numeric account, estimated by the Germans, indicating how much of Europe was conquered and occupied by their army on the first anniversary of World War One. The report also accounts for the amount of land being occupied by the Entente powers, and the number of Allied prisoners, machine guns and artillery pieces taken by the central powers within this same time frame. The report was interpreted by the Berlin-based American Association of Commerce before being filed in its entirety by the Associated Press:

"The territory occupied by the Allies... is about the size of the State of Connecticut."

"The territory occupied by the Central Powers... is about the size of the State of Missouri and about one-third the size of the German Empire."

 

David Lloyd George (Vanity Fair, 1916)

An article that served to introduce American readers to the new British Prime Minister, David Lloyd George (1863 - 1945), who replaced the incompetent wartime leader Herbert Henry Asquith (1852 - 1928):


A Pickelhaube from Amazon:

"People had began to doubt whether or not Mr. Asquith had 'the will to win' the necessary determination to make all things work together to that end. There was no doubt in the case of Lloyd George. He had supported credit, he had supplied ammunition, he had inspired general confidence, he had reconciled the irreconcilable. The question arose whether or not the box seat on the coach of state should not be given to him."

The article concentrates primarily on the radical instinct and liberal leanings of Lloyd George, who is often remembered as the Prime Minister who laid the foundations of the British nanny-state.

In 1940 Lloyd George wrote an editorial in which he condemned the leaders of Europe for procrastinating rather than dealing with Hitler when Germany was still weak Click here to read it.

 

Sight-Seeing at the Front (Vanity Fair, 1918)

Written during the closing weeks of the war, this Vanity Fair article was penned by a rather sly, witty scribe who was astounded to find that those areas closest to the front, yet just outside the entrances to the reserve trenches, were jam-packed with all manner of civilian tourist groups (ie. "The American Woman's Bouillon Cube Fund", "The Overseas Committee of the New and Enlarged Encyclopedia", "The National Mushroom Association of the United States"); an exercise in creative writing? You tell us.

 


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