quinta-feira, 22 de junho de 2006

WWI (4)

Citado num curioso artigo da Reason, "Teddy Roosevelt’s Hidden Legacy, How an "imperialist" president’s record makes the case for military restraint.":

Winston Churchill suggested as much in 1936:"America should have minded her own business and stayed out of the World War. If you hadn’t entered the war the Allies would have made peace with Germany in the spring of 1917. Had we made peace then there would have been no collapse in Russia followed by Communism, no breakdown in Italy followed by Fascism, and Germany would not have signed the Versailles Treaty, which has enthroned Nazism in Germany. If America had stayed out of the war, all of these ‘isms’ wouldn’t today be sweeping the continent and breaking down parliamentary government, and if England had made peace early in 1917, it would have saved over one million British, French, American and other lives."

Noutro local:

Thomas Fleming, autor do "The Illusion of Victory: America in World War I (Basic Books, 2003)":

"From the start of World War I, stories of German atrocities filled British and American newspapers. Most emanated from the German march through Belgium to outflank French defenses in their drive on Paris.Eyewitnesses described infantrymen spearing Belgian babies on their bayonets as they marched along, singing war songs. Accounts of Belgian boys with amputated hands (supposedly to prevent them from using guns) abounded. Tales of women with amputated breasts multiplied even faster.At the top of the atrocity hit parade were rape stories. One eyewitness claimed the Germans dragged twenty young women out of their houses in a captured Belgian town and stretched them on tables in the village square, where each was violated by at least twelve "Huns" while the rest of the division watched and cheered

At British expense, a group of Belgians toured the United States telling these stories. President Woodrow Wilson solemnly received them in the White House.The Germans angrily denied these stories. So did American reporters with the German army.(...)

The Bryce Report was released on May 13, 1915. British propaganda headquarters in Wellington House, near Buckingham Palace, made sure it went to virtually every newspaper in America. The impact was stupendous, as the headline and subheads in the New York Times make clear.(...)From a perspective of a hundred years, we ought to take a harsher view. The Bryce Report has obvious connections to the British decision to maintain the blockade of Germany for seven months after the armistice in 1918, causing the starvation deaths of an estimated 600,000 elderly and very young Germans. This was far and away the greatest atrocity of World war I and it made every German man and woman hunger for revenge. By creating blind hatred of Germany, Bryce sowed the dragons teeth of World War II."

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