My Autobiography by Charlie Chaplin:
At the beginning of the First World War, popular opinion was that it would not last more than four months, that the science of modern warfare would take such a ghastly toll of human life that mankind would demand cessation of such barbarism. But we were mistaken. We were caught in an avalanche of mad destruction and brutal slaughter that went on for four years to the bewilderment of humanity. We had started a haemorrhage of world proportion, and we could not stop it. Hundreds of thousands of human beings were fighting and dying and the people began wanting to know the reason why, and how the war started. Explanations were not too clear. Some said it was due to the assassination of an archduke; but this was hardly a reason for such a world conflagration. People needed a more realistic explanation. They they said it was a war to make the world safe for democracy. Though some had less to fight for than others, the casualties were grimly democratic. As millions were mowed down the word ‘democracy’ loomed up. Consequently thrones toppled, republics were formed, and the whole face of Europe was changed.