Possible Underlying Causes of the First World War Essay

Possible Underlying Causes of the First World War Essay

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Possible Underlying Causes of the First World War

1. Germany had undergone a quick, successful revolution and had
become an economically very strong power. From 1900, Germany
became more and more ambitious. It’s desire to “find a place under
the sun” has become so great that it would be unfriendly and
hostile when in confrontation with other countries, hence it may
be one of the causes of the WW1.

2. Imperialism: Countries have long fought for imperialist
interests, including trade, land, and political influence. Though
before the WW1, no countries have actually fought against each
other because of imperialist interests, the relations are often
strained. As the Triple Alliance and Triple Entente formed, the
countries on the same side resolved over their interests, but
Germany showed a hungry, assertive desire over the settling over
such matters.

3. Militarism: (how the people give great importance to military
matters.)

Armament race-Britain and Germany have been competing in the
development of dreadnoughts *naval race*.

Influence of military leaders-great when the powers were preparing for
the war

Conscription- All European great powers (apart from Britain) have
adopted conscription. All young men had to go through military
training and when the country was at war, the young men would be
called upon to join the military forces.

4. Nationalism : one’s love for his fatherland.

Ultra-nationalism (extreme nationalism ) makes one want the government
to be stronger in foreign policies.

It has made people in the eastern Balkan states fight for t...


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and delayed the Germans. Moreover, as Belgium is so near to Britain,
Britain feels threatened by the Germans and entered the war on the
side of the Allies.

Italy was supposed to enter the war on the side of Germany and
Austria-Hungary because of the Triple Alliance, but as it had signed a
secret treaty with France, and the Allies had persuaded it to join
them, it declared that Germany had been offensive and hence joined the
war with the Allies.

Afterwards, USA joined the war in 1917, after Germany had declared its
“unrestricted submarine warfare”, for its interests had been
threatened. (One, the new policy of the Germans’ had threatened her
commercial shipping. Two, USA had lent much money to Britain and
France. If they had lost, they would not be able to return it) The
following year, Germany surrendered.

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