Wednesday, May 21, 2008

1918. Society (1)

1918. The Fourteen Points for a just and generous peace outlined by President Wilson, January 8, in a message to Congress are intended to counter the Russian Bolsheviks,who have released secret agreements revealing Allied plans to carve up the German Empire. Wilson calls for "open covenants openly arrived at" and for self-determination of government by Europe's peoples, asks for the creation of a League of Nations to preserve the peace, but has failed to obtain advance Allied agreement to his proposals.

1918. The tide of war has turned with the entry of U.S. troops.

1918. German air ace Baron Manfred von Richthofen, 26. leads the "Flying Circus" that downs dozens of Allied aircraft but is shot down himself April 21. The Red Baron is credited with 80 kills and the Allies bury him with full military honors.

1918. Eddie Rickenbacker engages seven German planes in a dogfight, September 25; he will win the Congressional Medal of Honor for his performance in the encounter.

1918. Russia's royal Romanov family is shot to death July 16 at Yekaterinburg by order of the Bolsheviks.

1918. Germany's Wilhelm II abdicates November 8 and hostilities on the western front end November 11 in an armistice signed by Germany and the Allies at Compiegne outside Paris.

1918. The Great War has killed 1.8 million Germans, 1.7 million Russians, 1.4 million French, 1.2 million Austrians and Hungarians, between 750,000 and 950,000 British, 460,000 Italians, 325,000 Turks and 115,000 Americans. Some 20 million have been blinded, maimed, mutilated, crippled, permanently shell-shocked, or otherwise disabled.

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