View Full Version : WW1 Centennial for USA

April 6th, 2017, 11:03 AM
One hundred years ago we entered into a war that had already seen much of the terrors and tragedies. Here's an explanation (http://www.npr.org/sections/parallels/2017/04/06/521793810/at-a-hefty-cost-world-war-i-made-the-u-s-a-major-military-power?utm_campaign=storyshare&utm_source=twitter.com&utm_medium=social) of the details. This war was much more significant for other countries, especially European ones, Australia, and New Zealand. But the war did much for American society. It was the first big expansion of government​ power after the Civil War era. It​ created a large veteran population. It also deepened out connections to Europe economically because we traded with them a lot.

So here's something to think about: these people really just died for another country. Would you do the same?

April 6th, 2017, 12:13 PM
WWI is often swept under the rug when it comes to US history, which sadly undermines the true tragedy the war was for Europe. It was the "War to end all Wars" they said, and were unfortunately wrong.

Contrary to popular belief, I don't see US involvement in WWI as being caused by unfounded German aggression like most like to say. Woodrow Wilson, the president at the time, was very much a globalist and ally of Britain. Despite claiming neutrality, the US under his leadership was basically selling weapons to Britain for free. The Germans told Wilson to call off the weapon shipments, but he refused and claimed ignorance of the shipments. The Germans allowed the US to continue the shipments for awhile, afraid of the US joining the war against them, but eventually they had enough.

A U-boat captain suspected a ship called the Lusitania to be carrying weapons, so fired upon it once. The ship quickly sank, killing 128 Americans. For some reason, records point to the ship sinking much faster than it should have, which along with more modern documents seem to point to the Germans being right about the Lusitania being a weapons carrier. Nevertheless Wilson used this and similar actions to paint the Germans as heartless killers and increase pro-war sentiments, justifying the joining in WWI.

WWI did many things for the US. It established it as a global, interventionist superpower. It strengthened US/European connections and basically eliminated the US indifference to European conflicts that has existed since Washington. And it shifted US opinion into more pro-government, allowing many Federal programs to take place.

April 6th, 2017, 10:50 PM
I don't see US involvement in WWI as being caused by unfounded German aggression like most like to say. While I agree that Wilson's hope for armed neutrality was doomed, it wasn't just our fault. The Germans were quite hostile to us, and not just for weaponry and food shipments. They had a plan outlined in the Zimmerman telegram to create war between us and Mexico again. Going to war was almost essential if our security and prosperity was to be guaranteed.

April 7th, 2017, 03:56 AM
I wore my poppy today for my Great Great Grandpa, who lost a lung to mustard gas while serving in the US Army in The Great War.