Visitors to the excellent Flanders Fields Museum in Ypres, Belgium wind up their visit walking past notice saying how many wars there have been since ‘the war to end all wars’. I can’t remember exactly how many there have been but it is several hundred, and shows no sign of stopping.
Almost exactly 100 years ago (as of time of writing), events were spiralling out of control in Europe. The complex series of alliances between the major powers designed to prevent conflict, were about to backfire badly and start a chain reaction that would kill 16 million people and wound 20 million others.
I have decided to visit some of the significant historic locations as close as possible to 100 years after the actual date events took place. On June 28th 2014, I will start in Bosnia’s capital and hopefully end up in November 2018, in the forest north of Paris where the armistice was signed. SPOILER: As it turned out I didn’t go to Compiègne. Instead I finished up in Chaumont-devant-Damvillers.