Wars generally are stupid, but World War I was especially so
During his visit to Europe last week, President Obama made a stop at a cemetery in Belgium where he paid homage to those who died in World War I a century ago.
The president hailed the sacrifices of the many thousands who showed a “willingness to fight, and die, for the freedom that we enjoy as their heirs.”
A fitting tribute, right?
Not so, SAYS Matthew Rothschild:
[T]his was not a war for freedom. It was a triumph of nationalism, pitting one nation’s vanity against another. It was a war between empires for the spoils.
Historian Allen Ruff, who is studying the causes and effects of World War I, was not impressed with Obama’s speech. “With Both NATO and the European Union headquartered in Brussels,” Ruff says, “it would have been a true homage to the dead buried in Belgium a hundred years ago if Obama spoke out against all major power imperial ambition, the true cause of so much slaughter then and since, rather than mouthing some trite euphemisms about the honor of dying for ‘freedom.’ ”
But Obama insisted on repeating the very propaganda that fed that war.