The Causes and Effects of World War I Essay

The Causes and Effects of World War I Essay

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The Causes and Effects of World War I


In 1914 through 1918, the entire world was at war. Due to many small, and some great incidents, the world powers went to war. During the war there were many events that drastically affected the outcome. Some of these events were very influential. From the assassination of Archduke Francis Ferdinand to the Treaty of Brest-Litovsk, the war was shaped by events like this.

On June 28, 1914, the Archduke of Austria-Hungary, Francis Ferdinand, and his wife entered their car. About five minutes later a blast rang out. A bomb had been throw in front of his car. A Serbian nationalist and member of the Black Hand, Gavrilo Princip, ran up to the car and, with two shots, killed the Archduke and his wife. When news of the murder reached Austria-Hungary, they thought that the Black Hand was in some way associated with the Serbian government. The Austria-Hungarians gave the Serbs and ultimatum. The Serbians agreed to all but one condition. This wasn't acceptable for the Austrian-Hungarians. They declared war on Serbia. The system of alliances soon took effect and had all the Allied countries declaring war on the Central Powers and vice versa.

On May 7, 1915, A British ocean liner is sailing off the Irish coast. Onboard are about 1,200 people, 125 of which are Americans. They boarded despite the fact that the German government had warned Americans not to take British ships. Suddenly a torpedo hits the side of the ship. A German U-Boat, U-20, had shot at her. Within 20 minutes the British Liner was at the bottom taking over 1,000 souls. The sinking of the Lusitania was one of the major reasons the United States was drawn into World War I. It swayed American public opinion in favor of joining t...


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...ed. Vladimir Lenin wanted to end the fighting so he accepted the German demands. The German demands were even harsher this time. Russia would lose Poland, the Baltic states, and recognize Finland, Ukraine, and Georgia as independent states. After the treaty was signed, Russia lost 25% percent of it's total area and population. Also, since Germany no longer had to worry about the Eastern Front they could commit more troops and weaponry to the Western Front.

The five mentioned events are some of the most significant of the war. From beginning to end, the war was shaped by events like this. The Treaty of Versailles all but ended the fighting. During the course of the war over 10 million soldiers lost their lives and 20 million were wounded. As Europe was trying to rebuild, the League of Nations was created to prevent something like this from ever happening again.

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