A Tragedy of Miscalculation
To some extent, the outbreak of the First World War was a tragedy of miscalculation. Austria declared war on Serbia, in the hope that it would only be a short and local war. Germany had miscalculated the risk of a two-front war. Germany’s war plan – the Schlieffen Plan, inevitably involved France, Russia, Belgium and Britain. In “The war to end all wars”, Germany also did not take into calculation the ‘Domino Effect’ of the alliances between France, Russia and Britain.
Because Germany had made such a bitter enemy of France, it decided to protect itself by making alliances with other countries in Europe. Germany formed an alliance with Austria-Hungary and Italy known as the Triple Alliance. To the keep the ‘Balance of Power’ in Europe, France allied itself with Great Britain and Russia; known as the Triple Entente. Both allies swore to help their allies if their countries were attacked. When a Serbian Nationalist assassinated the Archduke of Austria-Hungary, Austria-Hungary declared war on Serbia. Germany remembered their treaty with Austria-Hungary, declared war on Russia. They also declared war on France and invaded Belgium using the Schlieffen Plan. Afterwards Britain declared war on Germany and Austria-Hungary because of their alliance with Belgium, France and Russia.
Germany’s military reliance on the Schlieffen Plan working was a serious miscalculation. The Schlieffen Plan was a German war plan drawn up before 1914. Its essence was to avoid a two-front war for Germany, by first swiftly conquering France, the western front, through Belgium and then concentrating on the eastern front against Russia.
‘The invasion of Belgium was considered an essential element of the German war ...
... middle of paper ...
...to expand into the Balkans itself and was supported by Germany. It was the creation of conflicts and miscalculations by the movements in the Balkans that led to World War1.
‘Veni, vidi, vici’ (I come, I saw, I conquered) – Julius Caesar, Roman Emperor (100BC-44BC)
No power had been able to perceive the extent of damages brought by a general war, which lasted fifty-one months. They had believed the Third Balkan War would be a short war like the First and Second Balkan Wars. This serious misconception brought harm to all European powers. On the other hand, World War 1 was made inevitable by the long-term antagonism between the powers, as a result of rival nationalist movements, secret alliances, militarism and empirical dashes.
‘I think, that in our eyes, it’s obvious that the First World War changed the world’ – Stephane Audoin-Rouzeau, University of Picardie.
Need Writing Help?
Get feedback on grammar, clarity, concision and logic instantly.Check your paper »
- "War is the unfolding of miscalculations." - Barbara Tuchman The causes of World War I included a cultivating sense of nationalism leading to an arms race between Europe's paramount powers, all trying to establish superiority above others; militarism inaugurated to predominate across the globe. As the new kids on the block, Germany pursued the same imperialism as nations like France and Britain, with colonies stretching so far and wide that England was dubbed "the Empire on which the sun never sets." The war led to 8.5 million fatalities and the economic effects would be felt for years to come.... [tags: World War I]
856 words (2.4 pages)
- World War One Was a Senseless War World War One was the first major war that was fought in mainly in Europe, and parts of Asia. The war lasted from July 28th, 1914 to November 11th, 1928. There were over a hundred nations involved not only from Europe, but from Asia, Africa, Central America, North America and many Island nations. There were millions of casualties fighting in slow moving trench warfare , and many battles were also fought at sea. There are many reason why the world plunged into its first world war.... [tags: World History, World War I]
464 words (1.3 pages)
- “Everything happens for a reason”. This time honored cliché has worn its way into the psychology of man, for it gives us both explanation for things that we don’t understand as well as a source of comfort for undesirable happenings in our lives. Many who lived to see the horrendous times of World War 2 have used this phrase to achieve both these ends, for it gives them some small comfort to think that there is some grandiose and powerful meaning behind the happening s of this tragedy. However, as nice as it would be to imagine that there was some deeper meaning to it, WWII was a war not very different from other wars; at least, not in how it came to happen.... [tags: World War 1, World War 2, Adolf Hitler, Germany, L]
757 words (2.2 pages)
- World War II was one of the most deadly wars we know in history, having as many as sixty million casualties, most of whom were civilians. It impacted a lot of countries, almost all the world, which is why the name is given. This war impacted many countries in the world, and damaged almost all of the countries involved greatly. It also led to the downfall of Western European countries as world powers, leaving it to the Soviet Union, and the United States. The war started in 1939 and ended in 1945, with the invasion of Poland and the Axis surrender, respectively.... [tags: World War II, World War Two]
1611 words (4.6 pages)
- World War I, also known as the Great War, was a global war which took place primarily in Europe from 1914 to 1918. The immediate cause of the World War I was the June 28, 1914 assassination of Archduke Franz Ferdinand, heir to the Austro-Hungarian throne, by Gavrilo Princip, a Bosnian Serb citizen of Austria-Hungary and member of the Black Hand. The retaliation by Austria-Hungary against the monarchy of Serbia activated a series of alliances that set off a chain reaction of war declarations. Within a month, much of Europe was in a state of open warfare.... [tags: World War I]
1249 words (3.6 pages)
- Ever since the outbreak of the Cold War after WWII, American historians have depicted it as a battle pitting good versus evil, American democracy, capitalism, and desire for world peace, against Soviet communism, totalitarianism, and desire to take over the world. However, this categorization of the Cold War has been proven false by many documents made public since the collapse of the Soviet Union in the early 1990’s. Over the course of this essay, I will attempt to explain the true causes of the Cold War, and some of the reasons it progressed the way it did.... [tags: misperception and miscalculation in the cold war]
3561 words (10.2 pages)
- Prisoners of War in World War II If you have never been a Prisoner of War (POW), you are extremely lucky. The prisoners of war during the World War II, (1939-1945) were treated poorly with no respect or consideration and were given the living conditions worse than animals. It was an extremely bad situation that no human being could survive. They were mistreated, manhandled, beat and even shot defending their country. No one wanted to go to war, but for those men who did, and for those who survived as POWs will always regret it.... [tags: World War II History]
529 words (1.5 pages)
- World War II as a Good War The vast majority of Americans supported World War II (WWII) after Pearl Harbor was bombed, recognizing a fascist threat to Western democracy. WWII was a good war. It had the ability to unite America. They united against Nazism and fascism. But even a good War has its bad times. If you look behind what you think happened at what really happened in WWII it becomes clear that the U.S. has nothing to be proud about. WWII evolved the entire globe, putting the world's largest economic and military powers against each other: the AXIS powers Germany, Japan and Italy against the ALLIED powers Russia, Britain and the U.S.... [tags: World War II History ]
1889 words (5.4 pages)
- World War 1 The question is who and/or what caused World War 1. Well at the turn of the twentieth century Europe seemed to enjoy a period of peace of progress. But below the surface several forces were at the work and would lead Europe into the Great War. There were many causes of World War 1. Three important causes were: the assassination of Archduke Ferdinand, the tangle of alliances, and the costs of war. These causes had a great toll on World War 1 and questioned the thought if it would ever end.... [tags: World War I WWI WW1]
480 words (1.4 pages)
- Many historical events took place in the 20th century that will be remembered forever, but the one occurrence that everyone knows of and will forever be remembered was World War Two. World War Two, the greatest tragedy that has ever happened on the face of the earth, the genocide of Jewish people, a complete nightmare. When people think of WW2, many of the time the image of “those poor Jewish people” comes to mind. Many ask themselves how this could have happened. It just doesn’t make sense to them.... [tags: WWII World War 2 Essays]
731 words (2.1 pages)