Cassandra has moved. Ugo Bardi publishes now on a new site called "The Seneca Effect."

Sunday, November 4, 2018

One Hundred Years Ago: the end of the war that should have ended all wars.

The front cover of the book I published this year dedicated to the memory of a forgotten hero of the Great War, Armando Vacca. He fought for peace as much as he could, to the point that he had to give his life for a cause he had fought against. He died as a martyr for his Christian faith on the Carso mountains on July 21st, 1915.

One Hundred years ago, on Nov 4th, 1918, the Great War, also known as the First World War, ended for Italy with Austria-Hungary surrendering. The war would last a few more days on the Western front. I think it is appropriate to celebrate this day with some words of a beautiful song by Eric Bogle, "The Green Fields of France."

Ah, young Willie McBride, I can't help wonder why
Do those that lie here know why did they die
And did they believe when they answered the call
Did they really believe that this war would end war?

For the sorrow, the suffering, the glory, the pain
The killing, and the dying was all done in vain...
For, young Willie McBride, it all happened again
And again, and again, and again, and again

Eric Bogle –The Green Fields of France


  1. I'm sure a bunch of folks got rich though and that is all that matters and don't try and tell me different because it is a lie.

  2. Beautiful song an a highly relevant topic. "it's always the old that lead us into war, it's always the young to fall" (Phil Ochs). If you trust your government and your politicians, you might end up dead. Reagards, Henrik

  3. I have loved this song for the past 10 years since I first heard it. There are few ellegies that are as haunting and poignant.

  4. About WWI, I often wondered if an expert in system theory would give an account of the collapse of the Italian front at Caporetto. It surely looked like a Seneca collapse.

    1. That's a chapter of my new book. "Military applications of the Seneca Cliff"

  5. No songs of the Alpini? 'Don't get shot, soldier!' or 'I don't care if I die so long as I fall on flowers!'?

    How tragic that after the terrible losses in WW1, so many Italians fell for Mussolini's imperial dream.

  6. amazing pictorial montage. I try not to think of what I saw as an army doctor during viet nam and the video reactivated old sad memories of horrific injuries and napalmed children waiting in holding before going into surgery. And all for what? I am reminded of the phrase from WW1: we were lions led by donkeys."



Ugo Bardi is a member of the Club of Rome, faculty member of the University of Florence, and the author of "Extracted" (Chelsea Green 2014), "The Seneca Effect" (Springer 2017), and Before the Collapse (Springer 2019)