At the outbreak of the First World War, Robert Cecil found himself somewhat removed from the epicentre of Tory politics. Cecil's involvement in domestic political issues had been so intense that he had paid little attention to the growing crisis in international diplomacy that resulted in the outbreak of the First World War in the summer of 1914. However, Cecil formed the impression that French and other senior British military leaders viewed the efforts of his civilian outfit with scepticism. It also blurred the internal Foreign Office lines of command, enabling Grey and Cecil to operate with greater ease and flexibility, features of their work that were enhanced by the good personal relationship between the two men. Cecil's part in the sequence of events that resulted in Lloyd George becoming Prime Minister in December 1916 is one of the most documented in his political career.