Warfare Throughout The Western World Essay

Warfare Throughout The Western World Essay

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Warfare throughout the Western World underwent a massive change in the period of time ranging from the late 18th century to the conclusion of WWII. The French Revolution brought the concepts of nationalism and total war to the European Theater for the first time and set in motion the progression of war as a cause reliant upon garnering the support of a nations ' citizens. This support bled into the growing international theme of a unified, militaristic state throughout the latter half of the long 19th century. After WWI, the idea of a strong military state remained very prevalent; however an important divergence occurred wherein totalitarian regimes the idea was state-mandated, and in democratic nations it was citizen-supported. Overall, warfare in the West from the French Revolution to the end of WWII is characterized by a rise in nationalism and militaristic states, as well as changing tactics and methods of waging war fueled by a sharp rise in industrialism.
Louis XVI was the epitome of the "Old-Regime" in France. He was an extremely poor ruler, more concerned with pleasing his mistresses than his citizens, and before his death he embroiled the nation in 3 wars that lost both important territory and vast amounts of money for France. For a majority of the 18th century, France dealt with its wars in basically the same way and these three were no exception. The wars of Polish and Austrian succession lost valuable territory for France, and the Seven Years War almost sucked the treasury dry. The French Government would offer little to no military or supply aid to its colonies, and instead, most armies were raised by nobles and kings in times of need and incentivized with payment. These armies would be composed of a huge mix of fore...


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...citizens to support the war in unprecedented levels, which, unlike WWI, ultimately led to the survival of the nationalistic ideal throughout the entire war and past ultimate victory.
War in the Western world throughout the 18th, 19th, and 20th centuries were mainly characterized by the systematic rise and fall of nationalistic ideals in countries. Once industrialism debuted on the world stage, it became possible for nationalistic states to harness that power into fervent militarism, which ultimately plunged Europe into the seemingly purposeless First World War, and it seemed nationalism may never return. However, just like a zombie it dug itself back up again and was truly manifested on both sides in World War 2. Unlike the Old Regime; Western Warfare in this time period drew much of its power from the support of the people mainly through the vehicle of nationalism.

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