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An introduction to the causes of world war one leaders aggression

Forty-three years of peace among the great powers of Europe came to an end in 1914, when an act of political terrorism provoked two great alliance systems into mortal combat.

The 4 M-A-I-N Causes Of World War One

Early YearsEuropeans were fighting heavily on two fronts before the U. This assurance was confirmed in the week following the assassination, before William, on July 6, set off upon his annual cruise to the North Capeoff Norway. Archduke Franz Ferdinand and his wife SophieAustrian Archduke Franz Ferdinand and his wife, Sophie, riding in an open carriage at Sarajevo shortly before their assassination, June 28, 1914.

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When the delivery was announced, on July 24, Russia declared that Austria-Hungary must not be allowed to crush Serbia. Though Serbia offered to submit the issue to international arbitration, Austria-Hungary promptly severed diplomatic relations and ordered partial mobilization. Home from his cruise on July 27, William learned on July 28 how Serbia had replied to the ultimatum. At once he instructed the German Foreign Office to tell Austria-Hungary that there was no longer any justification for war and that it should content itself with a temporary occupation of Belgrade.

But, meanwhile, the German Foreign Office had been giving such encouragement to Berchtold that already on July 27 he had persuaded Franz Joseph to authorize war against Serbia. War was in fact declared on July 28, and Austro-Hungarian artillery began to bombard Belgrade the next day. Russia then ordered partial mobilization against Austria-Hungary, and on July 30, when Austria-Hungary was riposting conventionally with an order of mobilization on its Russian frontier, Russia ordered general mobilization.

The Origins of World War One

On July 31 Germany sent a 24-hour ultimatum requiring Russia to halt its mobilization and an 18-hour ultimatum requiring France to promise neutrality in the event of war between Russia and Germany. Both Russia and France predictably ignored these demands. On August 1 Germany ordered general mobilization and declared war against Russia, and France likewise ordered general mobilization. The next day Germany sent troops into Luxembourg and demanded from Belgium free passage for German troops across its neutral territory.

On August 3 Germany declared war against France. In the night of August 3—4 German forces invaded Belgium.

  • It was this pan-Slavic nationalism that inspired the assassination of Archduke Franz Ferdinand in Sarajevo in June 1914, an event that led directly to the outbreak of World War I;
  • Along with rising militarism and the burgeoning arms race, this fostered a growing delusion of invincibility;
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Thereupon, Great Britainwhich had no concern with Serbia and no express obligation to fight either for Russia or for France but was expressly committed to defend Belgium, on August 4 declared war against Germany. Romania had renewed its secret anti-Russian alliance of 1883 with the Central Powers on February 26, 1914, but now chose to remain neutral.

World War I

Italy had confirmed the Triple Alliance on December 7, 1912, but could now propound formal arguments for disregarding it: Thenceforth, they could be called the Alliedor Entente, powers, or simply the Allies. The outbreak of war in August 1914 was generally greeted with confidence and jubilation by the peoples of Europe, among whom it inspired a wave of patriotic feeling and celebration.

The war was welcomed either patriotically, as a defensive one imposed by national necessity, or idealistically, as one for upholding right against might, the sanctity of treaties, and international morality. Page 1 of 18.

  • The historical dialogue on this issue is vast and distorted by substantial biases;
  • Nationalism was a prevalent force in early 20th century Europe and a significant cause of World War I.