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World War I | Summary, Causes, Combatants, Facts

World War I

in the period between the years 1914–1918, World leaders decided to fight, To begin what would later be known as the Great War or (The First World War) WW1.

Ironically, boredom prevailed for long periods during World War I, due to trench warfare
Ironically, boredom prevailed for long periods during World War I, due to trench warfare, Btb.jo, (CC BY-SA 4.0), via wikimedia commons.

The last and immediate reason for the outbreak of war in August was the assassination of Archduke Franz Ferdinand of Austria along with his wife Sophie, on June 28, 1914 by South Slav nationalist Gavrilo Princip.

Unfortunately, the Crown Prince and his wife had survived an assassination attempt on the same day.

But the killer, in a coincidence that changed history, met them again by chance.

Which made room for a start ww1 that was one of the deadliest conflicts in history.

Allies against Central Powers:

The world in ww1 split into two parts, Allies against Central Powers.

In total, 30 countries participated in World War I, most of them on the Allied side.

Central Powers mainly formed from Germany, Austria-Hungary, the Ottoman Empire, and Bulgaria.

On the other hand, Great Britain, France, Russia, Italy, Romania, Canada, Japan and the United States (from 1917), were the most important allies.

65 million fighters from many countries -Among them fighters from countries that were occupied or under the mandate of warring countries- were involved in this human massacre.

For example, many Egyptian soldiers fought in the ranks of the Allies in Europe and died in large numbers, and they did not receive proper attention from historians.

The war ended with the defeat of the Central Powers.

July 28th 1914:

Perhaps no one knows who of these soldiers died and who lived to return to their loved ones, British soldiers marching to Somme. Anders
Perhaps no one knows who of these soldiers died and who lived to return to their loved ones, British soldiers marching to Somme. Anders, (CC BY-ND 2.0), via Flickr.

After the assassination of the Austrian Crown Prince, Austria issued an ultimatum to Serbia on July 23, 1914, requesting approval within 48 hours of 10 demands.

Although Serbia agreed to most of these demands, Austria considered them a rejection as long as it rejected some of them, and declared war on Serbia on July 28, and international efforts to resolve the dispute failed.

After Serbia rejected the terms of the Austro-Hungarian Empire, on July 28, 1914
Austria-Hungary declares war on Serbia, causing the war to begin.

The Balkan region, which sparked the war, was like a powder keg waiting for someone to throw a match next to it.

But the problem is that when this barrel ignited, it ignited the entire planet.

Then, in early August 1914, Germany invades Luxembourg and Belgium.

The French quickly responded by invading Alsace, The British came from their country to support them.

In general, and throughout the duration of the war, more than 16 million people -soldiers and civilians- were dead.

Nearly 60 percent of those who fought died.

This is a number of victims that human history has not known before.

The theater of fighting expanded to include Europe, Africa, and the Middle East.

For much of its time, World War I witnessed what is called trench warfare.

Image from H.V.'s The Hunting in France, Published 1920, by Ernest Blakeley. A Hoax to Show the Location of a Hidden Sniper
Image from H.V.'s The Hunting in France, Published 1920, by Ernest Blakeley. A Hoax to Show the Location of a Hidden Sniper, Cassowary Colorizations, Attribution 2.0 Generic, via wikimedia commons.

This was the result of the huge losses that any force would suffer if it tried to move forward.

We also witnessed the widespread use of German submarines to sink commercial cargo ships belonging to the Allied countries, with the aim of strangling them economically and then militarily.

Battle of Mons:

World War I saw the first European engagement in over a century since the Battle of Waterloo in 1815.

It was the Battle of Mons that began on August 23, 1914, in Mons, Belgium, when a British infantry force numbering around 75,000 fought against an estimated 150,000 Germans.

Battle of Tannenberg:

The battle continued during the period between August 26-August 30, 1914

The name of the battle is a German name, after they won it, It is the name of another battle in which the Poles defeated the German Teutonic Knights in 1410. The Germans would take revenge nearly five centuries later.

The battle took place between the Germans on the one hand, and the Russians who attacked them on the other hand.

While the Russians initially achieved victory, they made a primitive mistake that revealed their poor military level by exchanging wireless messages without encryption.

The Germans simply picked up those messages, reorganized their ranks, and then the tide of battle turned disastrously against the Russians, who lost thirty thousand dead and 90,000 others were captured.

Technology development due to World War I:

Paradoxically, World War I was the scene of the demise of many modern technologies.

The British invented the tank, this weapon that changed the concept of land warfare from its day until now.

Airplanes, submarines, were also used in war for the first time.

But perhaps none of those who fought were as popular among the people at that time as the pilots, Although the most famous of them all is Manfred von Richthofen, Germany's "Red Baron".

Manfred von Richthofen "The Red Baron" in Schweidnitz, 1918, Cassowary Colorizations
Manfred von Richthofen "The Red Baron" in Schweidnitz, 1918, Cassowary Colorizations, Attribution 2.0 Generic, via wikimedia commons.

Machine guns capable of killing successive batches of soldiers relentlessly appeared in World War I as well.

One of the most important developments in the weapons industry was the focus on increasing their effectiveness and the distance at which that can kill.

To give an example, warships were able to hit targets up to 20 miles away.

The use of chemical warfare weapons has also been expanded.

Even propaganda itself witnessed a remarkable development during the First World War, and war posters became an integral part of raising the morale not only of professional armies, but of people as well.

The emergence of the United States as a superpower:

World War I showed the USA as a superpower for the first time.

And while historians say that President Woodrow Wilson went before a joint session of Congress to request a declaration of war against Germany because of Germany's failure to implement its pledge to suspend unrestricted submarine warfare in the North Atlantic and the Mediterranean.

As well as its attempts to entice Mexico into an alliance against the United States, as his reasons for declaring war.

German U-boat UB 14, spring 1918, Black sea, SMU Central University
German U-boat UB 14, spring 1918, Black sea, SMU Central University, CC0 1.0 Universal Public Domain Dedication, via wikimedia commons.

There is a point of view that says that the Americans deliberately delayed the declaration of war until the European powers were apprehensive, and then it would be easier for them to intervene.

In any case, history proved wrong the German naval commanders who convinced Kaiser Wilhelm II that a resumption of unrestricted submarine warfare could help defeat Great Britain within five months.

The British were not defeated, and the Americans entered the war.

End of the war:

By the end of the war, Four imperial dynasties - the Habsburgs in Austria-Hungary, the Hohenzollerns in Germany, the Sultanate of the Ottoman Empire, and the Romanovs in Russia - their rule ended forever.

Seeds of World War II:

There is a point of view that the Second World War was the legitimate son of the First World War.

This is because the Allies set humiliating surrender terms for the Germans in particular.

The world will not wait more than 20 years for World War II to begin.

The war also created the Middle East problem that continues to this day.

Great Britain granted the (Balfour Declaration) to the Jews, a promise to help them establish a national home for them on the land of Palestine, which caused the expulsion of an entire people from its land.

This promise will always be known as (the promise of the one who does not have to the one who does not deserve).

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