Talk:World War I

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edit·history·watch·refresh Stock post message.svg To-do list for World War I:

Here are some tasks awaiting attention:
  • Verify : From Wikipedia:WikiProject_Military_history/Assessment/World_War_I: Add inline citations. Reference list needs auditing. First thing checked was Fromkin2004, p.94. One hopes he is authoritative, because the claim that military expenditure rose by 50% needs to be explained in a little detail, since there could be so many different variables. (see David Fromkin)
  • Other : Make sure that all images are properly sourced, or replace unsourced ones. For example, the information about the "Austrians in Tyrol" isn't sufficient.
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Current status: Former featured article

Inclusion of Spanish Flu victims[edit]

Re the opening paragraph calculation of deaths, most studies of the 1918 Pandemic (including the Wikipedia article) include the war as a factor eg movement of people around the world, fatigue, cramped conditions etc. A recent BBC programme on the Pandemic used details from the HMNZT Tahiti and the Brazilian navy ( while flu deaths in South Africa were attributed to labourers returning from France.

As it already refers to genocides, I think this is reasonable. I've included some wording, because it's easier to edit actual words, rather than 'What ifs' but I'm happy for others to change it.

Robinvp11 (talk) 12:28, 10 September 2018 (UTC)

The war certainly changed the date that the virus arrived in different places, but the number of locals affected would have very little difference based on that date. The starvation and reduced immune status of populations in conflict affected areas, on the other hand, would have increased both the infectivity and overall mortality rates. It is, however, nonsensical to blame the returning carriers, as they had little or no choice in their movements and had little or no impact on the results. LeadSongDog come howl! 17:49, 10 September 2018 (UTC)
I've read this several times and I think you're disagreeing but I'm not entirely sure.
The war certainly changed the date that the virus arrived in different places, but the number of locals affected would have very little difference based on that date. Do you have supporting literature for that statement? I've read several studies of the pandemic and I've not seen this claim before but I'm always open to new ideas.
Saying the virus was spread by people returning home from infected areas ie from France to Cape Town is hardly blaming the returning carriers and seems an odd interpretation. Following the Wikipedia policy of Assume Good Intent, I myself try to avoid referring to other editors as 'nonsensical' but then adding had little or no impact on the results did make me waver for a minute. That seems to be saying returning carriers of the disease had no impact on the number of people infected by one of the most virulent and contagious pandemics in recorded history. Which of course would be completely nonsensical.

Robinvp11 (talk) 15:57, 11 September 2018 (UTC)

Sorry, @Robinvp11:, I just now read this. First off, I would never refer to a person as nonsensical. I referred to a statement that way. The returning soldiers were not free agents, moving about as they wished. They were still under orders. They were no more to blame for carrying influenza than this week's Romaine lettuce was to blame for the e-coli it carried. One might reasonably assign blame to the medical officers who allowed them to be sent home sick, but not to the rank and file soldiers. I doubt I could find a source for that, but it is blue sky obvious.LeadSongDog come howl! 00:39, 23 November 2018 (UTC)

German and Arab Leadership[edit]

Paul von Hindenburg and Erich Ludendorff held near absolute and complete control over the German Empire and its military from August 1916 until October 1918 wielding an influence in Germany similar to the influence wielded by the Three Pashas in Turkey, to the point where even the article for the German Empire refers to the government of the Reich at that time as being under a "Military dictatorship". Should they be included in the infobox beneath Wilhelm II as principle commanders and leaders of the Central Powers? It seems odd to me the Three Pashas would be but Hindenburg and Ludendorff wouldn't. From "Haig's intelligence. GHQ and the German Army, 1916–1918":

"Hindenburg was also appointed as Supreme War Commander of the armies of the Central Powers, with nominal control of six million men."

Likewise, while perhaps not as overall influential as Hindenburg and Ludendorff, Hussein bin Ali, Sharif of Mecca led the Arab Revolt which one of the most crucial and important events of the Middle Eastern Theatre of the war. Is there any reason he wasn't included on the Allied side of the infobox? Salociin (talk) 23:53, 29 November 2018 (UTC)

The list has been established after multiple discussions by many different editors. See archive. See archive. One might make a case for every senior officer of every army but that would make the list far too long and cumbersome; so the decision was to include only the highest status leaders. Mediatech492 (talk) 00:36, 30 November 2018 (UTC)

I'm afraid I simply do not understand how Hindenburg and Ludendorff could fail to be considered "highest status" leaders when there are plenty of reliable sources which attest to their absolute and complete domination of the German Empire and the German Military in a manner which is equal to that of the Three Pashas in Turkey, who are included. This isn't simply "my opinion", but the "opinion" of every single World War I historian and scholar that I have ever read. Dismissing them merely as "senior officers" seems inappropriate, but very well. If the matter is permanently settled and the case closed, and there is no chance of reopening this discussion, then there is no purpose in bothering to continue to argue any further, and I will concede. Salociin (talk) 21:34, 30 November 2018 (UTC)

Border war, Zimmerman Telegraph inclusion[edit]

I've attempted to note, with nothing more than a linkless sentence, that the United States and Mexico were embroiled in a border conflict, the tensions of which combined with the British intelligence intercept of the Zimmerman Telegraph from Germany to Mexico played key roles in the American declaration of war on the German Empire. How anyone views this as unimportant is beyond me, but I'd like to gather opinions and proceed accordingly. Much obliged. MarkMcCain (talk) 17:28, 2 January 2019 (UTC)

Howdy: thanks for starting this up. It's not that I view the information as unimportant: it's that I view it as unimportant *for the lead*. The lead is the absolute most essential information for a reader to get a quick overview of the subject, the material without which they would not have a full understanding of the subject. Everything in it should be a) very important to the topic, and b) already contained in the body. The Zimmerman Telegram mention is good--classic information, well known, doesn't take up much space to mention, essential to understanding the U.S's entry into the war--as is the submarine war mention (and the Belgium issue for the British entry, also mentioned). The border war, however, isn't even mentioned in the main body of the article. Considering that it's a complete side issue to the war, I see no reason why it should take precedence over, for instance, a mention of the Battles of the Isonzo or something much more relevant (but also not in the lead).
With a topic this enormous and an article this sprawling, I think it's essential to be ruthless in the lead so as to make it manageable. I've worked hard over the past month to do so, and while I'm in no way the article's keeper, I think the logic as to why it should be left out, *of the lead only*, is clear. Palindromedairy (talk) 18:50, 2 January 2019 (UTC)
Thank you for taking the time to give detail and explain your point of view, you'd be surprised (or you may not be, actually) how many people ignore other Wikipedians when they start a talk page. As if we don't take this seriously. Anyway, to be clear, it wasn't that I thought it took precedence over anything in particular - just that I have a knack for detail and figured it should be included in the passage. Sort of a, "this is the situation all around" type of deal. But that makes sense, the page is incredibly long and detailed as it is. I reckon if someone looks well enough, they'll find the Border war. MarkMcCain (talk) 19:47, 2 January 2019 (UTC)

Semi-protected edit request on 7 January 2019[edit]

In Legacy and memory § Historiography, please link 1st instance of historiography. 2606:A000:1126:28D:B13A:2CC7:857A:2750 (talk) 21:33, 7 January 2019 (UTC)

 DoneBraxton C. Womacktalk to me! 21:44, 7 January 2019 (UTC)

Semi-protected edit request on 17 January 2019[edit]

World War I was a horrible War with too many things happening. (talk) 13:31, 17 January 2019 (UTC)

What is your request?Slatersteven (talk) 13:36, 17 January 2019 (UTC)
Wikipedia is not a discussion forum. ‑‑ElHef (Meep?) 13:55, 17 January 2019 (UTC)

Semi-protected edit request on 22 January 2019[edit]

The links of the two maps in the External Links category "Animated Maps" are nonfunctional. Replace existing links with the following.

For "Europe plunges into war" replace existing link with this one:

For "Europe at the end of the war" replace existing link with this one: 2A01:E35:2FD4:7570:244A:6C39:52D:FFEC (talk) 16:18, 22 January 2019 (UTC)