Talk:Economic history of World War I

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Pre-War Loans to Russia by England and France[edit]

The current article does not include the subject of loans to Russia by England and France to improve its strategic railway system and equip the army and navy after their massive losses in the Russo-Japanese War of 1905. Christopher Clark in his Sleepwalkers (2014) has some notes on this subject, but he does not provide much in the way of details. Here are some notes on his book:

Massive French loans, after 1913, of 2.500 million francs for strategic railway construction leading directly to East Prussia. Clark, p. 308. Excessive and misguided estimates of the Russian economy and the fighting power of the Russian army; casual reference to loans. Clark, pp. 311-312. Moltke saw the Franco-Russian loan as a French strategic blow to German power. No numbers. Clark, p. 332. Vast French loans for strategic railway construction in Russia; among the largest in financial history at the time. Again no numbers. Clark, 352. A casual reference to the new Russian loan; again no numbers. Clark, pp. 419-420.

Comments and suggestions please. Menckenire (talk) 20:24, 9 June 2015 (UTC)

New article[edit]

I have started this as a new article and have included a working bibliography and a few entries. I plan to add a lot more in the next few days -- some excerpts from existing articles and some new material. Our coverage is currently scattered around and needs to be brought together and expanded. I got started by reading up on John Maynard Keynes, the British economist who handled financing for Britain & most of its allies. Comments and advice is most welcome! As we enter the 100th anniversary year we can expect a great many new books and heavy reader interest in WWI. Rjensen (talk) 13:44, 7 November 2013 (UTC)

I'm curious about the scope of this article - will it also include economic warfare? I'm thinking of Nicholas Lambert's Planning Armageddon, which talks about the Royal Navy's plans to strangle Germany economically (which was based on the faulty premise that because the global economy had become to integrated, the dislocation of a general war would cause the warring powers to collapse quickly. It did, nevertheless, go a long way toward bringing Germany to its knees by 1918). Parsecboy (talk) 18:03, 7 November 2013 (UTC)
That's a good idea. Yes I will have info on the British blockade. Rjensen (talk) 01:42, 8 November 2013 (UTC)


Not sure if you consider it within your scope but there is some material here which might help if you decide to include it - Military_history_of_Australia_during_World_War_I#Home_front. All the best. Anotherclown (talk) 06:23, 10 November 2013 (UTC)

thanks for the suggestion--I did add a section on Australia just now. Rjensen (talk) 07:32, 10 November 2013 (UTC)

Ottoman economy[edit]

It is claimed that CPU drove out Greeks and Armenians who had been the backbone of the Ottoman business community. Although at the end of the lengthy section there is a citation of Zurcher, it is not clear whether the above opinion is that of Zurcher. In fact, the Exchange of populations between Greece and Turkey took place in 1924-1925, well after the World War. So I doubt about the validity of the above statement. I'll call the editor. Nedim Ardoğa (talk) 07:54, 20 November 2013 (UTC)

Here's what Zurcher says re period just before the war began: "The victims of these policies were ... above all the Greek and Armenian entrepreneurs, who were not only obliged to use Turkish in their administration and on their shop windows and to take Turks onto the boards....A campaign of threats and intimidation, orchestrated by Izmir's CUP secretary (and later president of the Turkish republic) Mahmut Celal (Bayar) drove at least 130,000 Greeks from the Western coastal regions into exile in Greece." You can read his text here: Erik J. Zürcher (2004). Turkey: A Modern History, Revised Edition. p. 126.  Rjensen (talk) 09:45, 20 November 2013 (UTC)


Please be assured this is not just a standard drive-by tagging.

Basically, this article is really interesting but totally neglects non-European colonies, particularly in Africa, that were of great economic importance. For example, a discussion of the Belgian Congo's economy during the war about as vital as a discussion of Belgium's economy to understand the picture as a whole.Brigade Piron (talk) 18:26, 23 November 2013 (UTC)

don't be shy--you have much better access to the sources than the rest of us so please add a section. Rjensen (talk) 10:32, 30 November 2013 (UTC)
That's a very good addition, but I'm afraid the same is true for the French and British Empires...Brigade Piron (talk) 17:29, 30 November 2013 (UTC)
The French and British empires are already included. Rjensen (talk) 06:03, 1 December 2013 (UTC)
Not really, there are large chunks (virtually all) of Africa missing... Brigade Piron (talk) 10:33, 1 December 2013 (UTC)