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06 June 2021


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Angel Castañeda

You frequently say in your episodes that this series is a two-in-one because of the 1905 revolution, but I am most excited for the secret third revolution in February. I can't wait to hear about the Kornilov plot.

Matthew Lurton

Small Correction, Ottomans didn't join the war until October of 1914, not August.


Does anybody know which podcast is the first world war podcast mentioned in the episode?

Konstantin T.

Mike, great episode.
I would like to comment on the role of the army officers who were promoted from the lower classes. You hinted at their future role in the Revolution and Civil Wars that followed. It is true that many of the commissioned during the war were from the lower classes. It is also true that about one-third of the entire officer core fought in the ranks of the Red Army during the Civil Wars. But the motivation of these offers varied dramatically. Most of them were coerced into serving the Reds, and many switched sides at the first opportunity bringing their entire units into the White Movement.
My wife's great uncle is a good example of an "officer from the lower classes." He chose a military career as a means to rise above his station. A son of a village deacon, he volunteered to serve in the military as a private, served with distinction to earn the right to be admitted into the officer school, graduated in 1914, fought as an infantry officer in the Great War with valor, was decorated for his bravery. In the Revolution, he joined the White Movement and stayed with it to the bitter end.
There were many officers like him.

Petr Svatoň

Another great episode. I have sometimes been frustrated with the pace and length of the Russian revolution(s) series, but this episode and the one on the Balkans before WWI are absolutely amazing. I have read about the Great War many times, but everything was always focused on the Western Front, with Russia being at best a sideshow - it is great to be able to get to know what happened there between summer 1914 and February 1917. Thank you so much for your great work! :-)

Also - I can't help but wonder - am I the only one who is shocked by the sheer extent of the incompetence, petty jealousy and corruption of the Tsarist leadership? I mean, I knew that Imperial Russia was not like the best functioning government on earth or something, and that it's war effort in WWI left a lot to be desired, but OH MAN, how much did I underestimate quite how bad it really was...! I thought nobody was going to beat Charles the X and Polignac in incompetence, but it seems that Nicolas and Alexandra might actually pull that off.


Manuel, I assumed he was referring to this show on youtube, called The Great War, which does indeed cover the war week by week: https://www.youtube.com/c/TheGreatWarSeries/playlists?view=50&sort=dd&shelf_id=4

Shane Doherty

I think the outcome of pre-war assumptions was less about "What, the war will turn out to be a meat grinder?!" and more about "Okay, it looks like this thing could be a meat grinder, so let's plan to make it a quick knock-out affair to prevent that.", followed up shortly by "Dang, guess that didn't pan out." It's that obsession with trying to recreate the Franco-Prussian War which caused the political calculus to bring more opponents in against Germany and made it impossible to recreate it. And by the time the Schlieffen plan failed everyone was now experiencing the sunk cost fallacy because of the atrocious casualties, so now it HAD to be the meat grinder so the meat already ground wasn't wasted.

Paul in Kirkland

I searched for this site, specifically to ask which Great War podcast Mike was referring to, but someone beat me to it :)

Mike, can you confirm that it's the Youtube one mentioned above versus something else? A search on "Great War" yields...many podcasts...


Hmmm.... Would Trump or Alex&Nicky be worse for Russia? Just goes to show how rotten the system was compared to a constitutional republic.


Mike mentions a First World War podcast in the episode by the title The Great War. There are a couple with similar titles; which is he referring to?


I too am curious which Great War podcast Mike is referring to.


I’m really digging the WWI lead up you’re on now. One hole you filled in for me so far is how much of a powder keg Bosnia (Sarajevo) was due to its annexation by Austria just a few years prior. I ordered the book, BTW. Alexander Books in Lafayette, LA.

Michael Moss

PREORDERED MIKE!!! Got it com8ng to Galena I’ll! Hero of Two Worlds!!!

Gabriel Zamora

Sincere compliments for this series and for the History of Rome. I discovered & began History of Rome three years ago, went straight through, and then proceeded to Revolutions. I am currently on 10.25. Listening as I watch you continue is a little like being the elder Marty McFly chasing his son in Back To The Future II, literally trying to catch up with the future and failing. Two topic suggestions: 1) The Chinese Revolution for a new Revolutions section, and 2) Christendom for an entirely new podcast. Besides fitting neatly between THOR and REV, the history of Christendom would be a fascinating contrast between one non-plunder based society, medieval Europe, and the two plunder based societies that bracket it, the Roman Empire and modern, i.e. revolutionary Europe. Just a couple of subjects I feel sure I'd enjoy you tackling. At any rate, keep up the good work. Best wishes.

Gabriel Zamora

I have also waited a long time to tell you that the Oxford Symphony quotation is just inspired.

Ole Petter Laksforsmo Vindstad

Would preordering "Hero of two worlds" on Audible count towards the "quota" or do we need to reach 10K solid copies of the book?


Hey Mike, I too would like to know what WW1 Podcast you were talking about. I searched and there are a few titled " the great war" or "the great war podcast". Thank you!


Pre-ordered from Antigone Books in Tucson, Arizona!

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