Before the Great War, empires and kingdoms, such as United Kingdom, United States, Italy, Germany, Canada, Soviet Union, and many other countries and independent territories never appreciated the important of peace and security in socio-cultural, economic, and political development. The ideas of the people affected play an important role in understanding the magnitude and the impacts of an event. Because of this, the aim of this paper is to perform an analysis of the views of three poets namely Lt. Col John McCrea, Lt. Siegfried Sassoon, and Alan Seeger who were dominant during the Great War/First World War. The paper further looks at the messages carried in the drawings and paintings generated during the Great War in an attempt to understand the deeper meanings. The views of these poets, together with a number of existing paintings and drawings tell more about the Great War.

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First, the three poets had a similar view regarding the Great War. They all agree that the war was a matter between life and death. They all agree that leaders with their tribes, civilization, and races had a greater role to play in the war. Some leaders, such as Hitler with his Nazi party, believed that their race was and nothing was going to bring them down. In his poem, Lt. Col John McCrea, who served in the Canadian army during the First World War, underscore the fact that many people, including soldiers participating in the war, were already dead even before the enemy caught up with them. Lt. Siegfried Sassoon of the British army who fought in the same war, noted that young soldiers could not withstand the intensity of the war and taking away their lives was the only available option. Alan Seeger claimed that many people were desperate during the war and their appointment with death, what he termed as rendezvous with death, was inevitable. Back home, many people were urged to pray for the soldiers in the battlefield since their return was never assured, as Sgt. Joyce Kilmer of the US army claimed in her poem.

For some soldiers and analysts, they chose to present their ideas, which were similar to those of poets, through paintings and drawings. Looking at the paintings and drawings, one realizes that soldiers and all those affected by the Great War had something to comment. For Dix, who was a German soldier in the First World War, presented a drawing of the actions of soldiers in the battlefield. This drawing shows that human beings had turned into something else since their legs and other body structures resembled those of unknown monsters. In his view, a certain evil spirit had entered into human beings to an extent that they were killing and destroying their fellow human beings without any mercy.

For some optimists, such as Nash who was a British soldier, the Great War was necessary in making the new world. For war survivors, their attention was the paintings on the tombs and graves of the fallen soldiers. For one of the skeleton memorial at Mort-Homme in France’s Verdun, the writings say, “They Did Not Pass”, meaning the soldiers contributed enormously in the betterment of society. In Belgium, the paintings and the carvings of the greatest soldiers who helped the country win great battles are in great buildings implying that they will forever be remembered for their sacrifices. In the United States, the fallen soldiers were treated as heroes and as such, their graves are well maintained to show honor and respect for their contributions. In Germany, the cemeteries of the fallen soldiers are tourist attraction sites, apart from being the recreational centers meaning those who perished in the war should be celebrated for giving their best.

The Great War was fought several years ago, close to a century, but its effects are being felt even in the current society (Kennedy 24). For instance, the formation of the European Union and the military organization-NATO is hugely informed by the occurrences of the Great War. Countries learned that they need each other to forge lasting peace and security. Since the war, the international organizations have been created to deal with rogue states, such as Germany, Japan, and Italy during the Great War, and belligerent actors such as German leaders. The United Nations Security Council has contributed enormously in resolving conflicts that could have resulted in death and destruction. Unlike the 19th and 20th centuries, the global war in the 21st century would be something else because of the deadly weapons, such as atomic and nuclear bombs, which have the capacity to wipe humanity out of the face of the world.

In conclusion, the Great War was devastating given the number of people of lost their lives and the property destroyed.