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Falsifying the Record: Entente Diplomacy and the Preparation of the Blue and Yellow Books on the War Crisis of 1914

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Historians have long been aware of how a misleading error made in the compilation of the British Blue Book on the war crisis of 1914 left the Foreign Office open to German charges of doctoring its diplomatic record. But two volumes of previously uncited manuscript documents, still in the custody of the Foreign and Commonwealth Office, reveal that the reluctance of British officials to rectify their initial mistake also contributed to the falsification of the analogous French Yellow Book. This paper suggests that the resulting Anglo-French collaboration both constrained and retarded the British government's more active engagement in the debate on the origins of the Great War.
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Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: January 1, 2007

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