A selection of provocative remarks about the First World War that prompted me to write this book.
‘And that’s why we lost the First World War.’ Lady novelist in a radio discussion on the harmful influence of the public schools in Stop the Week, 21 February 1987. None of the panellists queried this opinion.
‘Watching Field Marshal Haig up a ladder, steering more Tommies towards senseless slaughter, you’re inclined to laugh in disbelief.’ Review of Oh! What a Lovely War in Newcastle. Daily Telegraph, 24 March 2010.
‘We are still defined by that pointless war.’ Simon Heffer, Sunday Telegraph, 2 August 2009.
‘The worst war that ever happened.’ Review of television presentation of Birdsong, Daily Telegraph, 23 January 2012.
‘Arsenal imploded at Newcastle, while Field Marshal Haig also failed to produce a Plan B.’ Caption to photograph in a report by Brian Moore, Sunday Telegraph, 10 February 2011.
‘It was suicide warfare by 19th century armies equipped with 20th century weapons. If it weren’t for the Americans plunging in the war would have been won by Germany. Yet all leaders – Wilson, Lloyd George, Clemenceau . . . not to mention that arch-criminal Haig – should have been shot in the back as cowards who had sent young men to die for Dolce et Decorum Est.’ Taki in The Spectator, 28 January 2012.