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1 hour ago, ChelseaBoy said:

Even back then Germany had plans for territorial expansion and were looking to implement the Septemberprogramm which showed the extent of their war aims, being the territorial expansion in the east and west. Years later it was resurrected by the Third Reich as a central plank of their Lebensraum philosophy.  If Germany had won either war decisively then nothing would have stopped German hegemony in Europe.

The September programme would be a bad reason for the British Empire to get involved.

 

Germany agreed to drop the opportunistic annexation of France if Britain remained neutral.

 

Did anything else in the programme threaten British interests?

 

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10 minutes ago, Gonzo79 said:

Britain stated it joined to protect Belgian neutrality but France was probably a bigger concern.  

...

True, but see the comment about the September programme. 

 

Also I believe we remained neutral during the Franco-Prussian war. A much smarter, and more beneficial, decision I think.

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1 hour ago, ranger_syntax said:

Did any pact oblige the British Empire to get involved?

 

I'm not aware of one.

There's a determination not to acknowledge your point. Perhaps after another few pages of trying to explain the background to WW1........

 

I'll attempt to break the log jam early and say I agree wholeheartedly. It seems clear those who took us into it had little idea what they were getting into, or the long term implications. Had the Empire not been involved, not only would the lives of its citizens been hugely improved but the insidious malevolence of socialism might never have taken root. It was the single most transformational and probably the most disastrous decision of the last 200 years. 

Edited by Bill
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Is it not widely accepted that Britain shouldn't have got involved in WWI?

 

I don't think we should have got involved.  But neither should the Russians or Germans.

 

A disastrous that escalated quickly moment, with multiple factors and reasons.

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3 hours ago, ranger_syntax said:

Did any pact oblige the British Empire to get involved?

 

I'm not aware of one.

Don't think anything obliged Britain to get involved. We had signed the Triple Entente with France and Belgium but this did not explicitly compel us to go to war. 

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47 minutes ago, ranger_syntax said:

My experience is that the most people think that Britain was involved justifiably.

Another interesting subject, that may be linked to age and circle(s) of friends/associates. 

 

People my age, who grew up in the 80s and 90s seems to be quite anti-war (generally), in my experience. 

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