Nothing Less than War: A New History of America's Entry into World War I

Justus D. Doenecke, Univ. Press of Kentucky, $40 (416p) ISBN 978-0-8131-3002-6
This splendidly perceptive history is also an exercise in nostalgia for an era when Americans debated a war before the president launched one rather than afterward. A University of South Florida emeritus history professor, Doenecke (Storm on the Horizon: The Challenge to American Intervention, 1939–1941) writes that Americans greeted Germany's 1914 invasion of Belgium with horrified fascination, but with little sense of foreboding. Most citizens and President Woodrow Wilson favored the Allies, but wanted to remain neutral. Doenecke recounts how this feeling gradually changed over two and a half years in response to Germany's self-defeating actions, the foremost being the new submarine warfare, which, raising fears for the safety of passenger ships, was viewed by many as no less ghastly than terrorism is today. Doenecke paints intriguing portraits of leading figures, many now obscure, including Franklin Delano and Theodore Roosevelt and William Jennings Bryan, plus the rich stew of newspapers, magazines, organizations, diplomats, and propagandists who fought (occasionally literally) over this issue. 35 photos. (Apr.)
Reviewed on: 02/28/2011
Release date: 03/01/2011
Genre: Nonfiction
Paperback - 394 pages - 978-0-8131-4550-1
Open Ebook - 436 pages - 978-0-8131-4027-8
Open Ebook - 436 pages - 978-0-8131-3003-3
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