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THE GREAT PANIC BEGINS

Terrorized civilians fleeing by the thousands Special to The Great War Project (16-17 August) Civilians are fleeing the war zones – thousands of them on every front by the third week of the war. Historian Martin Gilbert quotes one French officer: “We were in contact for the first time with the Great Panic. These were…

A WAR OF SAVAGE REPRISAL

The atrocities mount Special to The Great War Project (15 August) Massacres of civilians are spreading on several fronts: *Austria-Hungary invades Serbia on 12 August. Men rounded up and shot, children killed, women raped. *Similar reprisals take place as German troops march through Belgium. *In the mining town of Dinant, just one example, the Germans shoot…

GERMAN SUCCESSES ON TWO FRONTS

Ferocious German fire power. Enormous French losses. Special to The Great War Project (14 August) Germany is fighting on two fronts – in the west in Belgium with sights set on Paris and in the east in Poland with its sights set on Russian-occupied Warsaw. On this day a century ago Germany is making progress…

IS THE UNITED STATES IN IT?

President Wilson ponders a role for the US Special to The Great War Project (10 August) On this day, precisely one century ago, Woodrow Wilson, President of the United States, buries his wife Ellen, who died of kidney disease four days earlier. His personal grief makes it hard for him to concentrate on the widening…

WHAT KIND OF WAR WILL THIS BE?

A war of flags and drums, and regimental colors? Hardly. Special to The Great War Project (8 August) Most political and military leaders from all the great powers believe it will be a short war, over by Christmas. Many believe cavalry will be the decisive factor, thus the hundreds of thousands of horses initially brought…

ALL IS NOW HASTE

War fervor grips Europe as millions join up. Special to The Great War Project (7 August) The British army is too small. To expand its ranks quickly Lord Kitchener, the British Minister for War, launches an appeal for 100,000 volunteers. But still, Kitchener believes that Britain can only contribute 50,000 men at most for the…

THE RAPE OF BELGIUM

German atrocities almost from the first hour Special to The Great War Project (6 August) Belgian snipers effectively target German soldiers from the first day the Germans enter Belgian territory. The Belgians do not intend to give the Germans free passage into northern France. Troops from Belgium’s small army – including those on horseback and…