Cover: Planning Armageddon: British Economic Warfare and the First World War, from Harvard University PressCover: Planning Armageddon in HARDCOVER

Planning Armageddon

British Economic Warfare and the First World War

Add to Cart

Product Details

HARDCOVER

$54.50 • £43.95 • €49.00

ISBN 9780674061491

Publication Date: 01/01/2012

Short

662 pages

6-3/8 x 9-1/4 inches

1 map, 1 table

World

Before the First World War, the British Admiralty conceived a plan to win rapid victory in the event of war with Germany—economic warfare on an unprecedented scale. This secret strategy called for the state to exploit Britain’s effective monopolies in banking, communications, and shipping—the essential infrastructure underpinning global trade—to create a controlled implosion of the world economic system.

In this revisionist account, Nicholas Lambert shows in lively detail how naval planners persuaded the British political leadership that systematic disruption of the global economy could bring about German military paralysis. After the outbreak of hostilities, the government shied away from full implementation upon realizing the extent of likely collateral damage—political, social, economic, and diplomatic—to both Britain and neutral countries. Woodrow Wilson in particular bristled at British restrictions on trade. A new, less disruptive approach to economic coercion was hastily improvised. The result was the blockade, ostensibly intended to starve Germany. It proved largely ineffective because of the massive political influence of economic interests on national ambitions and the continued interdependencies of all countries upon the smooth functioning of the global trading system.

Lambert’s interpretation entirely overturns the conventional understanding of British strategy in the early part of the First World War and underscores the importance in any analysis of strategic policy of understanding Clausewitz’s “political conditions of war.”

From Our Blog

Jacket: Out of My Skull: The Psychology of Boredom, by James Danckert and John D. Eastwood, from Harvard University Press

Responding to Boredom during Self-Isolation

No one likes to be bored, but it’s almost inevitable during this time of social distancing and self-quaratine. John D. Eastwood, coauthor of Out of My Skull: The Psychology of Boredom, explains some things that we know about boredom, how to address it—and even what we can gain from it. We have been here before. During the SARS outbreak of 2003, upwards of 23,000 people in the Greater Toronto Area were quarantined. House

‘manifold glories of classical Greek and Latin’

The digital Loeb Classical Library (loebclassics.com) extends the founding mission of James Loeb with an interconnected, fully searchable, perpetually growing virtual library of all that is important in Greek and Latin literature.