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World War I


As we reach the centennial of World War I’s commencement, it’s hard for me to see it as anything but one of the stupidest events in modern history. And I use the word “stupid” with great intention, as the lead-up to the war after Franz Ferdinand’s assassination, the alliance system, the militarism, the egos, the ramped up belief in the relationship between masculinity and war (which is not addressed in the linked essay but which was a huge factor at least in Britain and Germany, and later in the U.S.), all of it contributed to a mere 16 million deaths in 4 years for no good reason at all.

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