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The Ballad of the Great War 1914

On Radio 2 tonight 10pm - this is from the website:

The Ballad of the Great War - 1914, featuring stories told by men and women who took part in those first few months of the conflict both at home and abroad. The stories are accompanied by original music written especially for the programme and was inspired by the stories told.

In this programme we hear stories about La Belle Epoque, the era of calm before the outbreak of the first world war, the clamour by young men to join the army during August 1914, the London buses which were conscripted into the army to take the troops to the battlefields, the battle of Mons, trench warfare, the bombardment by German battleships of Scarborough, Whitby and Hartlepool and The Christmas Truce.

The songs for this programme are written by John Tams, Billy Bragg, Julie Matthews, Jez Lowe and Sean Cooney.

i thought the aerial view of the blood filled moat around the traditional palace,political prison and last bastion of the psychopathic families that have ruled their british subjects since 1066 was a rather powerful image .

I'll have to take your word for that until I get round to listening to the programme. I fell asleep before it even started last night Embarassed

my version was on the tv news .

i recon it would be rather nice if a bit more thought was given to the peeps who did really well from ww1 such as arms manufactures,newspaper magnates, oil companies ,rail shareholders ,cloth makers etc etc etc etc rather than the folk who "sacrificed "for the common good.the cynical exploitation of both the military fallen,damaged but heroes and the emotional response of the population then and now has hidden the true nature of the "great"war.

imho it was partly a family spat among the very posh,partly a good chance to make a few quid and protect ones assets and at least in part a diversion from a very real possibility of europe wide revolutions against both capital and royal power.there are other aspects to some parts (grab the oilfields of the middle east for instance).

one thing that seems a bit odd is that the general staff often get the blame for the huge casualty rates but it did require that folk were willing to play along with a machines vs flesh war in the interest of the rich and powerful rather than deciding that a bayonet is a tool with a worker on both ends.
Mistress Rose

I don't altogether agree with you Dpack, but the main flaw I see is in your last paragraph if you mean that the ordinary soldiers were willing to just fight regardless. This is what happened. The soldiers were given orders, and obeyed them. They probably didn't know what they were up against entirely, and if they had refused it would have been called mutiny. In fact the Russians did refuse and went off to have a revolution instead.
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