Tuesday, August 22, 2017

A Telling Book: The Struggle for Mastery in Europe

For a change of pace if not subject, herewith, a book review:

The Struggle for Mastery in Europe by A J P Taylor takes
Europe from 1848 to 1918. The plethora of multiple treaties,
small and larger wars, meddling in each other's affairs ad
infinitum, not forgetting the constant lying and pride puffing up
is alarming, outrageous and depressing. What strikes the
reader most is how none of the issues which caused such
behavior has been resolved, just as the Civil War here
(-1865!) has not completely brought the races together.

Author Taylor, a British intellectual, provides generous
footnotes, bibliography and an explanatory index. He
also enjoys a sly sense of humor when recounting the
motives and actions of the various monarchs and
ministers of the European nations. It is shocking to
learn how these leaders thought they could simply
take over smaller countries at their whim, haggling
over who got what at whim--who cared about the
hapless millions in their wake? They ventured far
from Europe with adventures in Asia and Africa,
sometimes with little practical to gain except some
illusory prestige.

This is an important book, one I recommend,
with lessons to learn for today's tensions and

...still struggling for mastery, yet rarely achieving
it, our world leaders really ought to read Taylor's
work. They might be surprised to find themselves

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