Philip Gibbs (from April 2002)

I read some gripping prose lately, in spite of the fact that it was written 80 years ago and its author has been dead for 40. The book is called “More That Must Be Told”, by the British war correspondent Philip Gibbs (1877-1962). It is an analysis of the developed countries after World War I, and in its pages one can clearly see the seeds of the second global conflict. Gibbs soberly wrote of the great German war debt, the poverty of Austria, the vengeful mentality of France, the apathy in Britain, and the developing isolationism of America. He saw so clearly that the United States was the key to world peace, and hoped against hope for her participation in global affairs. Alas, his hope in 1921 had to wait 25 years to see fruition, until after another great war.
It is chilling to read current events 80 years later, when you already know how things turned out. I wonder what a reader in 2082 will make of our current events. It seems there is not much new under the sun.

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