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Stoessinger goes through the largest wars of the 20th century and discusses the motivations and rationales of the world leaders that decided to turn against each other. Studying world history before, World War I has commonly been presented to me as being caused by large social factors like jingoism, the cult of the offensive, This is an informative and provocative book.
Studying world history before, World War I has commonly been presented to me as being caused by large social factors like jingoism, the cult of the offensive, secret alliances, and so on. Stoessinger argues that the individual choices of the world's leaders were more important. With the power they had they could have decided against war but their advisers, misconceptions, and likewise convinced them to start fighting.
This pattern repeats throughout the 20th century. Some of these personal stories were fascinating to me.
Stoessinger argues that wars are avoidable and that much of the ultimate responsibility lies with the leaders of the nations that go to war. I agree that wars are avoidable and that history often emphasizes larger social factors as being the cause of inevitable conflicts.
However, I don't think the individual leaders are as important as Stoessinger says. Like Howard Dean, I don't believe in the great man theory of history. Even before democratic governments there were democratic societies.
The people had the power to rebel against their kings, emperors, etc. Leaders responded to what their people wanted, or at least what they thought they wanted to a certain degree.
The same is true of democratic governments. People sometimes talk about Hitler as if he were an evil man who came out of nowhere and seduced an innocent country with new ideas.
I don't think any of Hitler's ideas were new. I think all of them existed in the social consciousness before and what Hitler brought to the table that no one else had was being a powerful orator.
But this wasn't enough for everybody. There was resistance in and out of the Third Reich. His rhetoric wasn't strong enough for him to take over the world. He lost the war. If Hitler had never been born, I think a somewhat less powerful orator would have taken his place.
Without the same allure perhaps he wouldn't have been as powerful or as arrogant and things would have turned out differently, but there would still be recognizable similarities. If the German people hadn't had any of Hitler's ideas in mind before as possibilities, then I don't think so many of them would have taken to him as quickly and strongly as they did.
I think George W. Bush was a horrible president for lots of reasons. I don't support the wars in Afghanistan or Iraq. Certainly he played an important part of the decision making for both of these conflicts, but I don't think he was out of touch with the American people when doing so.
Then with Iraq he acted in a paranoid, biased manner, ignoring what ran contrary to his ideas. I think the American people acted the same way. Convinced that the U. Anyone who did must be a terrorist and shouldn't be able to fly on airplanes.
I was a part of this. I'm still living in this country, receiving government-subsidized student loans, and so on. I didn't like that the U. And I'm not trying to.
I think blaming leaders is the Nuremberg defense. Nazi accusations are overused and trite in my opinion, but this is one I actually stand behind. At the Nuremberg trials lots of officers said they shouldn't be held responsible because they were just following orders. Under this rationale, leaders are responsible for wars or anything else bad.
If you're not a leader, it's not your fault when something goes wrong. I don't believe this. What makes someone a leader is that people follow them.An example of this is his work in Why Nations Go to War. In the first section of his novel, The Iron Dice, Stoessinger offers an alternative explanation of the causes of World War I, one that includes human reactions and feelings.
WHY NATIONS GO TO WAR is unique. The reflections of author John G.
Stoessinger are built around ten case studies and provide a deep analysis of the root causes of modern war, from from World War I Price: $ "Meant to convey an understanding of modern warfare, Why Nations Go to War is a unique book built around ten contemporary case studies, emphasizing the pivotal role of the personalities of leaders who take their nations, or their following, into war.
Why Nations Go To War Essay WHY NATIONS GO TO WAR is a unique book and a product of reflection by author, Dr - Why Nations Go To War Essay introduction.
John G. Stoessinger. Why Nations Go To War. Next. Share. Comment. War is politics by other means. In other words, when political leaders cannot get what they want through peaceful methods, they judge the cost of achieving their goal through military force.
Preventing armed conflict requires raising the cost of using force. Jun 14, · Best Answer: There are a number of reasons nations go to war. These include wealth, power, to gain land, to aid others, to retain land, politics, and freedom. The Revolution and the Civil War are examples of two reasons for going to war, retaining land and gaining freedom arteensevilla.com: Resolved.