Professor Fischer's great work is possibly the most important book of any sort, probably the most important historical book, certainly the most controversial book, to come out of Germany since the war.
W. W. Norton
W. W. Norton
W. W. Norton
W. W. Norton
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
Fritz Fisher "Germany's War Aims in the First World War" dwells on the tremendous amount of material collected primarily from the archives of the Central powers. It deals with one topic, and deals with it in methodical and exhaustive manner - a continuation of policy of War Aims of the Imperial Germany during the period immediately preceding and throughout the First World War. Germany, only united within the memory of the generation of 1914, was fighting the war not only for its rightful place as a European Great Power, but for a leading, pre-eminent place in the European and by extension the World balance of power. Germany was aiming to displace Britain as a traditional power broker in Europe, unite Austria-Hungary and other Central European powers in the economic and geo-political unit known as MittleEuropa, dominate Russia on its Eastern border and France on its Western. Bethman-Hollweg's (Chancellor for most of the War) vision of the post-war World was Germany dominating...
Fischer's works regarding Germany and the First World War is a must for anyone interested in the events and decisions leading up to 1914 and for anyone interested in historiography. When Fischer unleashed this book in 1961, it created a tidal wave in the German historian community. Germany's Aims... challenged traditional views regarding the origins of the First World War and developed conclusions that were devastating to the reputations and memories of individuals and an entire nation. The traditional view regarding the causes of the Great War, as explained by prominent German historians on the subject like Gehard Ritter, was that the leaders of Germany felt surrounded by the allied nations and thus entered the war for defensive reasons. Most historians outside of Germany agreed that Germany was not the sole culprit of 1914. The "guilt clause" in the Versailles Treaty is still almost universally condemned. Through an exhaustive study of documents out of Germany,...
This is a controversial book from the 1960s that described Germany's war aims in World War 1 as expansive and imperialist in nature. The stress is on territorial aims, which included relations with the ports of the Low countries in the West, expansion into territories that were until recently under Soviet influence in the East and the idea of Mittelafrika (middle Africa) under which German colonies in East and West Africa (Tanzania, Cameroon, Namibia) would be united by takeover of the Belgian Congo and neighboring countries. The result is to present Germany's foreign policy as outside international norms in its expansionism.
This gave rise to a controversy that should probably be studied by anyone wanting a balanced view of the subject. It was the spirit of the times that the book itself made it into English and its views were widely accepted, prior to scholarly attention moving to World War 2. German domestic politics are also not addressed in the book save as they...
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