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Was Germany Responsible For The Cause Of World War One?

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Introduction

Jan Kocman 5GH How Far Was Germany Responsible For The Cause Of World War One? To what extend can we blame Germany for the start of the war? This is the question this essay will be trying to answer, whether we can at all blame Germany for causing the war. First of all we must evaluate the situation in which Germany and the other major countries of Europe were in. Both in events that took place before the July Crisis (Arms Race, Moroccan Crisis, Bosnian Crisis, Balkan Crisis) and the actual July Crisis will help us see how far Germany was responsible for the war. We know that the situation before 1914 wasn't a very pleasant situation as tension between the two major 'groups' was high. The two major groups: Germany, Austria-Hungary and Italy, also known as the Central Powers, and the Entente, which included France, Russia and later even the UK. These two major influencing powers were always present and relations between them weren't ideal, but not until the beginning of the C20th did the tension increase to such a point for the outbreak of war. ...read more.

Middle

Because Germany lay between France and Russia it was obvious that they would ally against Germany this had actually happened in 1894 in the Dual Entente alliance (defensive agreement). Later when the UK joined this alliance and conducted naval talks with Russia, Germany had the correct opinion that enemies were encircling it and so the Schlieffen plan was introduced. This made Germany evermore so nervous and relations worsened. (The Schlieffen Plan was produced by the German Army High Command and was to solve the problem of encirclement.) The naval race between the UK and Germany in 1906-1908 over the supremacy of the sea had rendered it impossible for any Anglo-German connection after this date. There were increasing expectations of war, because there was a feeling that if the amount of weapons were increased it was clear that they would eventually be used. The tension strengthened due to the 2nd Moroccan Crisis when Germany had gained a piece of the Congo, Germany had ended the weltpolitik (1912) as it was obvious that after many diplomatic defeats and humiliations the policy wasn't going to work. But then there was the Balkan Crisis, which showed A-H how large a threat Serbia was to it's influence in the Balkans (Bosnia) ...read more.

Conclusion

Germany had deliberately used Austira in its journey to power, escalating the July Crisis into a world affair. We can say that German policies weren't healthy for her relations to the other powers, before Bismarck resigned relations were neutral, but the aggressive actions of the Kaiser and his politics made Germany a target of the powers, which saw her as a threat to there combined interests. After a few diplomatic defeats Germany had realised that her only true ally was Austria-Hungary, this increased German insecurity, and the increasing strength of the other powers had alarmed Germany, which had in response started preparing for a preventative war ("Attack is the best form of defense."). So Germany is the power most responsible for the war as it was determined to break the encirclement since the triple entente was complete. Germany was the most powerful economic and military power in Europe and there strong sense for Social Darwinism created a feeling for complete domination of the continent and this is probably why Germany has the blame for being most responsible of commencing the war, eventhough other powers have there role in it as well. ...read more.

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