Reflections on the First World War

Wednesday 28th July 2021

St John’s Place, Lower Road, Bemerton, SP2 9NP


“War should be so engaged in that nothing but peace should appear to be aimed at.” Reflections on the First World War in light of Cicero’s dictum.

Allan Mallinson reflects upon Marshal Ferdinand Foch’s prescient statement in 1919 that the Treaty of Versailles was “not a peace but a twenty-year armistice” despite the complete defeat of the Quadruple Alliance in 1918 after four years of hard fighting.

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Allan Mallinson is a former soldier and author of the Matthew Hervey novels as well as the best-selling The Making of the British Army (2009), the award-winning 1914: Fight the Good Fight – Britain, the Army and the Coming of the First World War (2013) and the revisionist, polemical Too Important for the Generals: How Britain Nearly Lost the First World War (2016). In 2014, he was commissioned to write a monthly commentary on the conflict for The Times, which provided the basis of Fight to the Finish: The First World War, Month by Month (2018). Looking at the First World War month by month, he suggests, reveals the war’s complexity while preserving the essential sense of time.