And one of the best-known solar eclipses in history had a terrible message for the West. “One thing I will mention, most people don’t mention it now, World War I started in August of 1914 and there was a total solar eclipse over Eastern Europe and the Ottoman Empire,” Biltz said. “And what happens? You have this total solar eclipse, the beginning of World War I, the Ottoman Empire is destroyed. It even went over Nineveh, the same place as where Jonah was.” The date of that eclipse? The same as the upcoming one – Aug. 21.