1914重现?

美国剑桥—今年是现代史上具有转折意义的事件的一百周年纪念。第一次世界大战夺走了大约2000万人的生命,摧毁了一整代欧洲青年,也根本性地改变了欧洲和世界的国际秩序。

事实上,一战不但摧毁了无数生命,也摧毁了三个欧洲帝国——日耳曼、奥匈和沙俄,奥斯曼土耳其帝国的崩溃可以算边缘的第四个。在这场大战前,全球实力平衡的中心在欧洲;之后,美国和日本崛起成为新超级大国。大战还带来了1917年布尔什维克革命,酝酿了法西斯,也加剧和扩大了困扰二十世纪的意识形态之争。

如此灾难是如何发生的?大战爆发没多久,德国总理贝特曼-赫尔维格(Theobald von Bethmann-Hollweg)在解释发生了什么事时说:“哦,我要是知道就好了!”也许出于自我开脱的目的,他认为大战是不可避免的。类似地,英国首相格雷爵士(Sir Edward Grey)指出他“认为没有人类能够事先阻止它的发生。”

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