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Episode 13

Leadership and the Humanities Podcast
Episode 13: The Great War

The Great War, so-called at the time because no one could believe that anyone would be so stupid as to engage in a massive international military conflict to the same degree ever again, completely changed the way people thought about and engaged in warfare…

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The following works were used in this podcast:

Editors. “Russian Revolution — Britannica Academic,” 2019.

Ray, Michael. “Weapons of World War I.” In Encyclopedia Britannica. Accessed September 26, 2020.

Royde-Smith, John Graham. “World War I — Britannica Academic.” In Encyclopedia Britannica, 2020.


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  1. Kayla O'Connell Kayla O'Connell

    In this week’s podcast, Dr. Bezio discussed World War I in great detail. World War I changed the idea of warfare and introduced new technological advancements. Millions of people died from this war as a result of the more deadly advancements of warfare. Since the ending of World War I and World War II, tensions have been rising across the world. Country’s are constantly threatening one another with their military power. Do you think there will ever be a World War III? With the progression of nuclear warfare, are we possibly dealing with a threat of a nuclear international war in the future?

  2. Christopher Wilson Christopher Wilson

    After listening to Dr. Bezio’s 13th podcast, I wonder if World War I has caused nations of today- whether big or small- to hesitate in getting involved with regional conflicts, especially when a country at the center of that conflict has ties to countries that have strong militaries. To me, I feel that this is the reason why the U.S., like many other nations, are quick to send economic aid or other forms of resources to countries in need before we ever deploy our women and men in combat. Though, I recognize this is not always the case when we start to look at the U.S.’s involvement in the Middle East. On that note, should countries- whether big or small- intervene in regional conflicts, even if the people of those countries have not asked external powers to assist them in resolving things? I believe that the various exceptionalism ideologies can sometimes cause other nations to react to things that may very well exacerbate situations than quell them.

  3. Olivia Cosco Olivia Cosco

    In podcast 13, Dr. Bezio discusses events that led up to the start of WWI. Industrialization led to technological advancement and imperialistic expansion globally, which led to complicated political tensions and eventually the war. A “round robin” or everyone declaring war on each other began and soon there was a big world war. The aftermath of this war left countries in a bad place economically and politically, which led to the rise of German national socialism and eventually WWII. If these are the factors which led to war then, is it possible we ever enter into a third World War? With covid-19 causing economic stress and political stress, especially with the upcoming election, is it possible there will be a WWIII? Or, do you think American and other countries have learned their lesson for the previous WWI and WWII?

  4. Julia Borger Julia Borger

    In Episode 13, Dr. Bezio describes the basics behind World War I, or as it is commonly known, The Great War. Due to great technological advancements and innovations, such as machinery, weapons, and trench warfare, the war was far deadlier than any conflict the world had previously seen. Because of this, I wonder how the war would have changed if they did not develop these advancements. Would it have ended around the same time? How many less casualties? Would some countries have fought on the opposing side?

  5. Tess Keating Tess Keating

    In Episode 13 of Dr. Bezio’s podcast she describes the “round robin” of countries declaring war on each other all over the world. Because of tensions between countries right now and all the country alliances, if there ever was a World War III what would it look like? Would it be similar and as devastating as the first two? After seeing how bad the first World Wars were, would as many countries get involved if there ever was a World War III?

  6. Zachary Andrews Zachary Andrews

    In Podcast 13, Dr. Bezio introduced the Great War as well as the alliances, conflicts, initial outbreak, and other technological advancements that were a massive part of the war. In the past when learning about World War I and World War II, it was said that the reparations that Germany paid from the First World War eventually led to the economic, political, and social downfall that happened within Germany over the following 20 years. Thus leading Hitler to take political control within Germany. If the reparations that Germany was forced to pay were a smaller amount or didn’t exist, would Hitler still have come to power?

  7. Zariah Chiverton Zariah Chiverton

    In podcast 13, Professor Bezio discusses the Great War. One thing I couldn’t help to think about how something so small sparked such a monumental chain of events. Gavrilo Princip planned to assassinate Archduke Franz Ferdinand but I don’t think anyone could have ever guessed what events followed, including the entire war. I don’t want to defend him or his actions, but he was just a young man who quickly changed the course of history. Are there any other times in history where a sequence of events like this happened? Is there a current situation or event that could possibly spark the same type of events?

  8. Olivia Cranshaw Olivia Cranshaw

    During this podcast, I thought the detail of the trajectory of the beginning of the war was interesting as it also showed the modernization of international relations. As each country declared war on each other, they escalated the conflict further, especially when the United States joined which brought multiple countries from central and south America. With an ever-evolving and connected world we live in today, would it really be possible to be neutral if a war became an international war? Especially in terms of trade (as seen with COVID vaccines) and politics?

  9. Annie Waters Annie Waters

    How did the timing of Russian history work out so that the Bolshevik Revolution so strongly impacted Russia’s participation in the war? Considering the class issues we discussed during the pre-Revolutionary American colonies, what about Russia’s government and social movements allowed a fully mobilized class-based uprising during such a major military conflict whereas colonial class concerns were so thoroughly suppressed during the American Revolution?

  10. William Coben William Coben

    Podcast episode 13 focused on World War 1 in great depth. After listening to the podcast I was intrigued by the increase and advancements in technology as they pertain to war. There were new guns, means of warfare, chemical bombs, and finally, the utilization of aircraft to instigate damage to enemies. As we see military technology today; the entire world knows that the United States is the most militarily advanced country, so my question is: Is the reason that the United States remains a world power due to the fact that countries are fearful to go into war with us due to the knowledge that with the dropping of a few bombs, many countries in the world could be entirely wiped out? Is this also why the United States considered an imperial power despite the fact that we are no longer actively expanding?

  11. Charley Blount Charley Blount

    Given the importance of the Black Sea and the Mediterranean Sea on European politics, how concerning is Russia’s annexation of Crimea? Could this development lead to another European war? If so, will the war be (at least partially) the result of US appeasement?

  12. Julia Leonardi Julia Leonardi

    It is so cool to hear about globalization’s roots and the beginning of the world we live in today. I love the perspective it gives me as I begin to look at the history to come. I just think about how complicated life would be if we got into a war today. How would that even work? Everything is so interconnected these days. It seems like we would need a common goal. Would war today completely destroy the world?

  13. Margot Roussel Margot Roussel

    Dr. Bezio talked a lot about the new forms of warfare including machine guns, mustard gas, and trenches. Two of these weapons make sense to me because they are efficient and deadly. However trench warfare does not. It is hard to build, and drags the war on. Why do you think they utilized this method of fighting even though it was costly and extended the war?

  14. Alexander Barnett Alexander Barnett

    When learning about the World Wars, part of the reason the conflicts became so international is because of alliances between nations which caused a domino effect of powers declaring war on others. Should alliances be prohibited to prevent similar future conflicts? Even if there were no alliances, would this stop another World War from occurring?

  15. Christina Glynn Christina Glynn

    In Podcast 13, Dr. Bezio discussed World War I focusing on the different technological advancements and the different countries involved. What would happen if a world war occurred today? Who would win? Would issues from past wars become relevant?

  16. Samuel Hussey Samuel Hussey

    After listening to the podcast on WWI, it left me thinking about how this war affected the next one hundred years of conflict across the world and set a precedent for how wars of the future would be fought. Planes were first introduced during WWI, and every country used propaganda to boost the morale of the citizens to stay motivated during the fight. Many people opposed the propaganda and harsh wartime regulations, claiming the government was restricting their free speech rights. Can the use of propaganda and stricter regulations be justified during a time of war for the greater good of the country?

  17. Carly Cohen Carly Cohen

    In podcast 13 we learned about the new technological advancements that made the Great War or World War 1 so dangerous and deadly. One example of a technological advancement was the machine gun. If so many advancements hadn’t been made would our world be different today? Would there have been a different turn out from the war?

  18. Delaney Demaret Delaney Demaret

    When Dr. Bezio described the “round robin” of war declarations, it is clear that they are all linked back to greater causes yet triggered in a sort of domino effect style. The presence of small triggers for massive wars predates WW1 (for example, the Defenestration of Prague), but after WW1, have nations’ foreign policies since leaned towards caution in over-responding to triggers? Or is this a natural phenomenon in the idea of war itself ?

  19. Sophia Peltzer Sophia Peltzer

    For the past century, there have been speculations on what factors could cause a third World War. Even as recently as earlier this year, after an unprovoked attack from Donald Trump on Iranian Maj. Gen. Qasem Soleimani, many were certain that this could be the spark necessary to cause such a world conflict. In today’s world, do you think the system of alliances are such that we would see a similar domino effect in the involvement of countries in the event of another world war? Do you think that, given the tumultuous political state of America and global unpopularity of Donald Trump, our traditional allies would offer us the same back up and responsibility as we may have guessed before his presidency?

  20. Alexandra Oloughlin Alexandra Oloughlin

    As stated in the podcast, WW1 introduced new military weapons that changed war permanently. Yet it wasn’t just one nation that brought new weapons, but many different weapons from chemical warfare to machine and repeating rifle. This increased the casualties. Do you think that the world is hesitant to go to another global conflict because the technology has advanced to a point that there are multiple countries with nuclear power and the repercussions of that could be deadly and long-lasting. What is to prevent all these countries from using this technology?

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