In this edition of the Aidan Project, the podcast marks a year online with the first ‘best of’ episode. This episode features audio from Aidan’s conversations with Dr. Paul Dean for the America’s Great War series of episodes. This special compilation is being released ahead of Armistice Day, 11 November. On November 11 1918, an armistice was signed between the Allies of World War I and Germany at Compiègne, France. It brought an end to the awful hostilities of what was thought to be at the time the war to end all wars. This episode looks at World War One from the battle of the Somme to the peace treaty at Versailles. Aidan’s special guest, Dr. Dean, is a former instructor at, and alumni of, Washington State University, who is an expert on World War One and author of Courage: Roy Blanchard’s Journey in America’s Forgotten War. For more information on Paul, please visit his web site at www.paultdean.com.
In this first spoken essay edition of the Aidan Project Podcast, Aidan examines why, and with what effects, the United States opted to enter World War One in 1917. The essay also looks at the idealist US President, Woodrow Wilson, who declared war on Germany on 6 April 1917, following repeated provocations. This essay takes a deliberately contentious look at the US’s role in the war, which adds a few ‘what-ifs’ into the mix for your consideration. Could, or should, the Bolshevik take-over have been snuffed out before it began? What about the conditions for Hitler’s rise to power? The roots exist within World War One and its aftermath. For more Project podcasts on the US involvement in World War One, take a look at the ‘America’s Great War’ two-part series with Dr. Paul Dean. Part one covers the period of US non-belligerence, up until the Zimmermann Telegram. Part two looks at ‘America’s Forgotten War’ from Wilson’s declaration of war, up until the Treaty of Versailles, for which this essay serves as a useful companion piece. You can find a full archive of podcasts at iTunes, YouTube and www.AidanCoughlan.org. Enjoy the essay.
One hundred years ago to the day of this episode’s release, on 6 April 1917, President Woodrow Wilson declared that the US was at war with Germany. This is part two of a two-part series focusing on the role of the United States of America in the Great War of 1914-1918. In part one, Dr. Paul Dean explained the underlying tensions that led to war, the ambitions of the Central Powers and The Entente, and the tragically misplaced belief that it would all be over quickly. Part one concluded on the eve of the momentous Declaration of War on Germany. Part two surveys the path of the war following the US’s official military intervention until the 11 November 1918 Armistice, but also beyond in wider political terms. What were Wilson’s war aims? How did the US military perform? What overall impact did the US have? And what is the legacy of ‘America’s Forgotten War’? All judgements on the merits of the war aside, the events of 1914-1918 must never be forgotten. It appears there is much work to do to raise the Great War’s profile in the US. This is the Aidan Project’s small contribution towards reinvigorating this valuable historical memory. The series’ special guest, Dr. Dean, is a former instructor at, and alumni of, Washington State University, who is an expert on World War One and author of ‘Courage: Roy Blanchard’s Journey in America’s Forgotten War’. For more information on Dr. Dean, please visit his web site at www.paultdean.com.