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The Hidden Perspective: The Military Conversations 1906-1914 by [David Owen]

The Hidden Perspective: The Military Conversations 1906-1914 Kindle Edition

3.4 out of 5 stars 14 ratings

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Length: 273 pages Word Wise: Enabled Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled
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About the Author

David Owen (Lord Owen) served as Foreign Secretary under James Callaghan from 1977 until 1979, and later co-founded and went on to lead the Social Democratic Party (SDP). Between 1992-95 Lord Owen served as EU Peace Negotiator in the former Yugoslavia and he now sits as an independent social democrat in the House of Lords. He is the author of many books, including In Sickness and In Power and The Hubris Syndrome. --This text refers to the paperback edition.

Review

"The history of the First World War has been exhaustively studied in relation to events of the fateful structure of the alliances. The area in between, the impact of the tactical management of diplomacy on the inevitability of war, has received inadequate attention. David Owen has filled that gap. He explains in lucid detail how Britain s abandonment of its splendid isolation in favor of entente with France and an understanding with Russia deprived the international system of any flexibility. Britain, heretofore the balancer of the balance of power, transformed itself into a direct participant in the power politics of the Continent. This decision, taken essentially in secret by military staffs, was all the more fateful because it induced rigidity in two ways. In their strategic planning, France and Russia counted on British support; Germany half-convinced itself of British neutrality. In every previous conflict, the consciousness that Britain might intervene on either side had inspired caution in both. Now, Britain weakened its capacity to induce restraint by being taken for granted by one side even as the other discounted its deterrence. David Owen s book should be essential reading for contemporary statesmen; it is a story of how overreaction to immediate problems can lead to eventual disaster." --Henry Kissinger

'Countless new books and articles are analysing the origins of the War and the military convulsions that followed. David Owen makes a powerful contribution in his new book, 'The Hidden Perspective: The Military Conversations of 1906-1914'. He looks through the keen operational eye of a former Foreign Secretary at the high-level manoeuvrings of London and other European capitals ... [arguing] that they took on a life and logic of their own, discouraging other political and military options that might have been far more effective - and far more wise. Readers of Diplomat will enjoy - and be startled by - many details Lord Owen gives us about diplomacy as practised a century and more ago.' --Charles Crawford, Diplomat Magazine --This text refers to the paperback edition.

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3.4 out of 5 stars
3.4 out of 5
14 customer ratings
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Reviewed in the United Kingdom on 4 May 2014
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Reviewed in the United Kingdom on 14 October 2014
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Reviewed in the United Kingdom on 2 July 2019
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Reviewed in the United Kingdom on 12 July 2014
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Reviewed in the United Kingdom on 17 August 2014
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Reviewed in the United Kingdom on 14 July 2014
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