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'July 1914: From assassination to mass slaughter.' (South London)

A Talk by Gwynn Thomas

A century has passed since the assassination of Austria-Hungary's Archduke Ferdinand on 28 June 1914.  Was this really the spark that ignited the conflagration that followed?  Did this seemingly trivial terrorist event really cause the Great War that broke out a month later?  Was this war by accident - or was it war by design?  It was certainly war by minority decision.      

The origins of the war will be examined from a socialist perspective.    

We shall examine the conditions affecting the decision-makers – both the short term and accidental as well as the long term and planned – and the larger historical and political background against which a tiny number of decision-makers decided the fate of millions.    

This war has been called the seminal event of the 20th century and its origins have been the subject of intense study and deep anD sometimes bitter controversy.  We shall ask what lessons are there to be learned, and whether war is an inevitable condition in human society?

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