Why World War One?

The long Failure of Western Arms.

War or Peace?

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NEW BOOK, FULLEST EXPLANATION OF HOW THE ARMS COMPANIES DROVE THE WORLD TO WAR in 1914


War or Peace?


1. The long failure of western militarism.


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There is no bigger political question than War or Peace? We in the West believe ourselves to be peace intending. Yet for a century and a half we have had regular wars and rumours of wars. These have caused the deaths of some two hundred million people. They are the greatest political failure on the planet. Usually, wars are understood in terms of the failures of politicians and as accidental, and our attitude to them has become fatalistic. Yet this explanation will not do.


This first book suggests another possibility. At the end of the nineteenth century, arms companies like Krupp, Armstrong, Vickers, Schneider, Du Pont and Skoda expanded by saying that weapons make states rich and keep them safe. They sold guns, battleships, gas, bombs and cannon throughout the world. They militarized state after state, encouraged arms races and taught politicians to believe in ever more lethal arms. States doled out the contracts. The outcome has been mistrust, the building of opposing empires across the globe, and a series of wars, including two World Wars, which have been largely about arms.


The understanding that arms cause wars is not new. After the First World War statesmen concluded that the munitions men, the “merchants of death”, had largely caused it. They fuelled four arms races and creating fear and military rivalry. As Grey said, “Great armaments lead inevitably to war.” They determined to disarm and make it the War to end all wars, working for more than a decade towards the great Geneva World Disarmament Conference of 1932. This conference, backed by most statesmen and by organizations representing half the people of the world almost succeeded in cutting all heavy arms by a third in the Hoover Plan. It was thwarted by the military, arms company agents, the Japanese attack on Manchuria and a group of British Conservative politicians. As a result disarmament did not happen and Hitler came to power.


This book also re-examines the Fascist movements in Italy, Japan, Germany, France, Britain and the United States, seeing the extent to which they was funded and backed by arms companies, industrialists, bankers and their agents. Fascists were paid to form armies to disrupt democracy and socialism, and create the chaos that only armies could sort out. The United States even had a Fascist plot designed to bring Roosevelt down. So, again, in the 1930s the munitions people were able to push towards another world-wide conflict. The underlying problem in causing the Second World War was not “appeasement” (until the late 30s), but the military agenda of the arms companies.


When the Second World War came, the world was totally militarized and the arms people moved inside government. It became the greatest industry on earth, reaping vast profits and accumulating power in the West, East and numerous military dictatorships. The understanding of arms as the main cause of wars, as creating a great World Disorder, was drowned in 1945 when the military-industrial complex declared itself to be the saviour of democracy and the keeper of peace in perpetuity. This book rescues this nearly drowned understanding.

It shows how time and time again the arms companies have sold weapons, run scares, backed supposed technical breakthroughs and manipulated the public to generate the wars on which they depend for their existence. Over two centuries their agenda has dominated the world political system to our cost. The munitions people have claimed direct access to government and the right to circumvent democratic and legal processes. It adds up to the biggest and most destructive failure in world politics and the one which must now be held to account.


The second book continues the analysis from 1945 up to the present and looks at how World Multilateral Disarmament can be a practical policy carried out within a ten year time frame to bring international peace to the nations.


WAR OR PEACE?

The long failure of western arms.

Introduction.

Volume 1. MANUFACTURING THE FIRST WORLD WAR.

PART I. THE INDUSTRY OF WAR EMERGES

1. The Start of the Industrial Arms Trade.

2. The Big Boys - Krupp, Schneider, Armstrong, Vickers.

3. Moving politicians into line – the British naval lobby.

4. Exporting Militarism.

PART II. WHY WORLD WAR ONE?

5. Weapons lead to War.

6. The Build-up and Pressure of Arms.

7. The Mulliner Panic and British Militarism.

8. Krupp, Von Tirpitz and the Kaiser.

9. The Attempts for Peace.

10. The Great War Boom.

PART III. THE WAR TO END ALL WARS?

11. Learning from History? A Review.

12. Christianity and Peace.

Volume Two: PULLING THE STRINGS OF FASCISM.

PART IV. SUPERPOWER MILITARISM

13. The United States learns Militarism.

14. Teaching Russia Militarism.

PART V. DEFEATING PEACE.

15. Peace and Disarmament or Arms and War?

16. The Politics leading to the Geneva Disarmament Conference.

17. The Great 1932 Geneva Disarmament Conference.

PART VI. THE MILITARY-INDUSTRIAL COMPLEX AS THE DRIVER OF FASCISM.

18. Looking behind Fascism.

19. Fascism in Italy, Japan, France and Britain.

20. Those behind the Nazi war Machine.

21. The American Fascist Coup Attempt.

PART VI. ‘ARMING THE WORLD – THE SECOND WORLD WAR.

22. The Second World War: the fully armed world economy.

23. The Second World War inside our heads.

The Short Version.

Chapters in Parts Three and Four.

Postscript.

Chronology.

Endnotes.