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Remembered Today:

"European civil war"


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Not mine, that's for sure, Kevin. Who is using the term and where?

Jim

(Sounds like it might be coming from a non-European source?)

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Not mine, that's for sure, Kevin. Who is using the term and where?

Jim

(Sounds like it might be coming from a non-European source?)

Hi Jim

You obviously feel as I do !

Well I first heard it last year in passing - it may have been at the Ypres Cloth Hall - I cannot remember exactly . But I heard it again last week at the Carriere Wellington in Arras - it's on the film sound track which is played at the end of the tour.

Regards

Kevin

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Ahem, I seem to recall that it was used in a television series - but I can't remember if it was "ANZACS" or "The Monocled Mutineer". Dating back to the early/mid-80's in any case.

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Whose idea is it to now call the Great War of 1914-18 the European Civil War ?

Kevin,

I have been very active in looking at our membership of the European Union. (Discussion for another forum). However in answer to your question this is a phrase that I have heard used within EU circles.

Regards,

Chris.

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Whose idea is it to now call the Great War of 1914-18 the European Civil War ?

Hadnt heard it before, Kevin.

I assume (perhaps wrongly) that whoever coined the phrase the analogy is intended to be with the American Civil War. I can see why someone might make the comparision - a conflict with multiple causes and which, in the aftermath, the combatants come together to make something much larger, stronger and better.

John

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So where do the Americans fit in then? Not to mention the Australians, Canadians, Indians, New Zealanders, South (and other) Africans, Brazilians, Chinese, Japanese and Siamese (apologies to any one I've missed out).

What utter arrogance.

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A more apt analogy perhaps than 'Civil War' is the sometimes used description of the period 1914-1945 as the 'Second Thirty Years War', an affair of two halves, 1914-18 and 1939-45.

ciao,

GAC

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All of a piece with those who see their future financial wellbeing tied to European Union. We have to pretend that we were always one big happy family really and the little spats like the 7 years War, Napoleonic Wars, and 1st & 2nd World Wars were just little family tiffs, nothing serious. So if we were all one big country really, we just hadn't realised it, then these and any other wars which might spring to mind, were civil wars. Complete tosh. The other danger in this area are the people who describe WW1 and WW2 as one big war with a break in the middle. Different wars, fought for different reasons. The Kaiser was not a Nazi even if he did provide the muck heap to fertilize their growth.

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All of a piece with those who see their future financial wellbeing tied to European Union. We have to pretend that we were always one big happy family really and the little spats like the 7 years War, Napoleonic Wars, and 1st & 2nd World Wars were just little family tiffs, nothing serious.

About 30 years ago I had to make a busines trip to Austria. The gentleman with whom I was dealing spoke excellent English, albeit with a faint Canadian twang. When I commented upon it he told me that he had had to spend a few years in Canada "During the last misunderstanding" Many years later I was visiting Japan and was amazed to hear WW2 described as "when friendly relations were disrupted"

On a more serious note at least one neo nazi group refers to ww1 and ww2 as civil wars!

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How can a war between nation states ever be described as a civil war?

How can a war between people with different languages be described as a civil war?

EU PC bunkum.

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I've only heard the phrase the European Civil War used once & it was in reference to the period 1914-45. It was 15-20 years ago at a conference on the financial prospects for the European building industry. The conference chairman, who was British, started off by talking about how we were now all friends & partners & had put the horrors of the 'European Civil War 1914-45' behind us. There was no opportunity for me to ask him to justify his statement.

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So where do the Americans fit in then?

What utter arrogance.

I think the best that can be said is that they arrived late !!

Some interesting comments from this post and others. I'm no Historian and my interest in WW 1 is mainly that my Grandfather and his brother were there.

I don't subscribe to the analogy with the US Civil War - seems to me that was a true Civil war with the North V South of one country fighting each other.

I suppose to call some battle or war a European Civil war we have to first ascertain if / when Britain / UK was /is classified as part of Europe.

British and European History is littered with Wars and Battles - do we now call them civil wars - I think not and it is disrespectful to our great heritage and our Hero's - John Churchill- Duke of Marlborough, Lord Nelson etc

Waterloo, Agincourt, Blenheim, Ramillies, Oudenarde, Malplaquet,Trafalgar, Hastings, The Somme, Ypres , etc. etc. - the list is almost endless.

My Grandfather fought alongside Canadians at the Ypres Salient and Vimy Ridge and had nothing but praise for them - he was at St Juliaan during the first Gas Attack in April 1915 when so many Canadians died and only the wind direction saved the English troops.

For me the inscription on the Menin Gate says it all . ( as in my original post on this topic)

Kevin

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I suppose to call some battle or war a European Civil war we have to first ascertain if / when Britain / UK was /is classified as part of Europe.

Do you mean there was a time when it wasn't?

How can a war between people with different languages be described as a civil war?

Recent history is littered with them.

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The other danger in this area are the people who describe WW1 and WW2 as one big war with a break in the middle. Different wars, fought for different reasons. The Kaiser was not a Nazi even if he did provide the muck heap to fertilize their growth.

Although the original Thirty Years War (c.1618-48) was not an unbroken series of battles either. And the nations involved changed as did the alliances and the casus beli at any particular phase over that period, so I see some justifiable analogies with the period 1914-45 - certainly far more than the crass pan-European concept of a 'Civil War' between 1914-18 or successive 'Civil Wars' between 1914-45. As has been pointed out, the latter concept is being promoted largely for current political reasons - to encourage us to believe that we're all one big Euro family now, we're asked to believe that we always have been, despite the odd squabble. Yeah, right!

ciao,

GAC

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I have heard reference to this before, probably revisionist thinking by those with a platform.I think it stems from the attitude of certain US factions who saw the two world wars of being nothing to do with the "new world" even though they became embroiled in them eventually.They saw the wars as European Wars, to be solved internally.Describe them as you will but the US policy post Great War was one of splendid isolationism and a wish not "to take our boys to war"was acclaimed by FDR more than once when he was under pressure from WSC to enter the war and safeguarding his future presidency.

An attitude similar to Neville Chamberlain's excuses in 1938 of why should we worry what goes on in a far

away country called Czeckoslovakia.

I have heard reference to the advantage of the original EC formation as preventing further European Wars but have never heard its existence would lead to the prevention of "European Civil Wars."

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Before the usual suspects mount their favourite hobbyhorses and start tilting at windmills, can someone provide at least some documentary source to confirm that this epithet has ever been used in a serious context?

Otherwise, I suspect that the next post may well be from someone who heard from someone down at the pub that this is the latest 'health and safety' Directive from Brussels.

Regards

Mel

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Save the patronising tone of superiority, Melpack. The LSE offers a module course on 'The European Civil Wars 1890-1990' - link HERE. And whilst opinions expressed on Wikipedia need to be treated with caution, the following article contains links to published sources and their authors in which the idea of a 20th Century European Civil War or series of Civil Wars is propounded: EuropeanCivilWar.

ciao,

GAC

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Mel

Whether Wikipedia should be termed "serious" is a moot point but it does have a brief article on the subject, suggesting that it's term used by a minority of academics to describe the period roughly 1914 - 1945.

The argument runs broadly that, at the beginning of the conflict, the various monarchies were from the same family and, towards the end of the period, there was a growing single culture & social elite. Europe was, therefor, homogenised.

The Wiki counter argument runs, as mentioned above, that you cannot have a civil war between independent states.

You pays your money.......

John

(PS: There's also an "element" of a BA History course at the LSE called the "European Civil war 1890 - 1990")

(PPS: Seems George & I have similar Googling speed skills)

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(PPS: Seems George & I have similar Googling speed skills)

:lol: - I want Steve Broomfield's souped-up broadband!

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can someone provide at least some documentary source to confirm that this epithet has ever been used in a serious context?

Regards

Mel

Well as I said previously the comment is on the soundtrack of the Documentary Film currently being shown at La Carriere Wellington in Arras

Kevin

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Save the patronising tone of superiority, Melpack.

Calm down dear! - it's only a discussion forum. :lol:

Thank you both for the links.

The way that I read the usage of the term is that it is purely a shorthand for an historical process that culminated in the displacement of 'European' hegemony in the world. This is substantially removed from a teleological proposition about European integration and re-writing history accordingly based upon 'misunderstandings'.

Regards

Mel

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Before the usual suspects mount their favourite hobbyhorses and start tilting at windmills, [........] I suspect that the next post may well be from someone who heard from someone down at the pub that this is the latest 'health and safety' Directive from Brussels.

Regards

Mel

Calm down dear! - it's only a discussion forum. :lol:

Regards

Mel

Indeed. ;)

ciao,

GAC

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the usage of the term is that it is purely a shorthand for an historical process

Generally how I read both the Wiki article and the LSE summary, Mel. Certainly nothing that makes me want to get my knickers in a twist over.

J

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