The greatest ‘if only’ of modern history… that the Weimar Republic had succeeded

Has it ever occurred to you that the Spanish flu pandemic of 1918 might have won us the war? Until I read November 1918 it hadn’t to me. Now I know that between May and June that year, as German forces moved to within artillery range of Paris, a million of Ludendorff’s troops, half-starved owing to the British blockade, went down with the virus. Meanwhile, the better nourished British army, regrouping for the battle of Amiens, had a mere 50,000 sick. On such things history can turn. Splendidly researched, and with a striking new thesis, Robert Gerwarth’s book warns against assuming that the way things turned out was inevitable. The