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What Caused the Outbreak of WW1 in 1914?

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Introduction

´╗┐What Caused the Outbreak of WW1 in 1914 The causes of World War One were far more complicated than those of World War Two. Europe had divided into two camps: the Triple Entente, comprising of Britain, France and Russia, and the Triple Alliance, comprising of Germany, Italy and Austria. Each member of the Triple Alliance had promised to help the others if they were attacked by another country. Austria needed the might of Germany to back them up due to political trouble in the south-east of Europe. Italy had joined these countries as they feared their power on her northern border. Germany was mainland Europe's most powerful country, so from Italy's point of view, being an ally of Germany was an obvious move. ...read more.

Middle

Germany, which was created in 1871 from separate German states after its defeat of France, and capture of the provinces of Alsace and Lorraine. France wanted revenge for the loss of Alsace and Lorraine to Germany. It had a large colonial empire and so was also suspicious of German colonial ambitions. Britain at that point was one of the most industrialised and wealthiest nations in the world with the largest colonial empire. Britain needed a stronger navy than its rivals to protect this empire and protect itself. By 1900 Germany was challenging Great Britain as the main industrial power in Europe. They saw possession of overseas colonies a large status symbol, Germany?s ruler, Kaiser Wilhelm II also wanted Germany to have its own empire, its ?place in the sun?. ...read more.

Conclusion

All that was needed to spark of a potential disaster was one incident, and that incident occurred in Sarajevo in July 1914 with the assassination of Franz Ferdinand, the heir of the Austrian Empire. Although there was no hard evidence that Princip was acting under orders from the Serbian government, Austria blamed Serbia. Frantic diplomatic effort gave Austria a guarantee of German backing. With this support Austria now felt secure enough to deal with the Serbian problem once and for all. It gave Serbia a ten-point ultimatum that would effectively have made Serbia part of the Austrian Empire. The Serbs could not possibly accept it. When the Serbs asked for time to consider, Austria refused and declared war on 28th July, 1914. The slide to all-out war had begun. ...read more.

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