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Fascist and Liberal Visions of WarFuller, Liddell Hart, Douhet, and Other Modernists$
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Azar Gat

Print publication date: 1998

Print ISBN-13: 9780198207153

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: October 2011

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780198207153.001.0001

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Background: The First World War in Western Consciousness

Background: The First World War in Western Consciousness

(p.130) 2 Background: The First World War in Western Consciousness
Fascist and Liberal Visions of War

Azar Gat

Oxford University Press

The First World War was a landmark in Western consciousness, yet its significance in the several nations involved differed greatly. In the mid-1920s a formal and vague consensus in favour of international reconciliation was formed however it proved to be too fragile and short-lived. With the downfall of the international economic system, the international reconciliation was faced with the difficulties brought about by the differences of interests within countries and the differing stand and acceptance of the Locarno Treaty. Rather than generating new fundamentals, the war accentuated the long-standing differences between national attitudes causing them to move in different directions, mentally and geographically. This chapter is primarily concerned with the westernmost parts of the Western World. This chapter discusses the emergence of new and liberal attitudes against war. While pacifism became stronger and vocal compared to earlier times, it remained a marginal phenomenon which was later sought to be replaced by cooperation and collective security. This chapter also discusses Liddell Hart's biography and his growing distance and change of attitude to the precepts of war.

Keywords:   First World War, Western consciousness, Locarno Treaty, war, liberal attitudes, attitudes against war, pacifism, cooperation, collective security, Liddell Hart's biography

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