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What reasons explain the outbreak of World War One- Which country is most to blame?

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Introduction

What reasons explain the outbreak of World War One- Which country is most to blame? There are many reasons that can explain the outbreak of World War One. All the countries involved can shoulder some of the blame for the war. In this essay I will look at the different reasons for the outbreak of World War one and I will consider which country is most to blame. Tension had been building up between the major powers for a long time. Since 1817, the Franco-Prussian war France had hated Germany. Germany had won the war and had taken the Provinces of Alsace and Lorraine. Both countries hated each other since then. France was afraid that the Germans might attack again and were jealous of Germanys growing wealth. France felt threatened by the ambitions of Kaiser Wilhelm. There was great suspicion and mistrust between all of the major powers. Germanys leader (Kaiser Wilhelm) was very ambitious and wanted Germany to become the greatest nation in the world. This annoyed Britain, who was the most powerful nation at the time. Germany did not have a very big empire. All of the main European countries were either concerned about protecting their empire or expanding it. ...read more.

Middle

They began to build Dreadnaughts, battle ships that were armed with heavy guns, this lead to increased resentment between the two countries. The second episode of confrontation was the Moroccan crisis in 1911. There was an uprising against the Sultan of Morocco. The German Kaiser sent a gunboat, the Panther, to the port of Agadir pretending to be defending German traders, although there were none there. Britain saw this as a naval threat to her power and put her navy on war alert. At a conference Germany was made to back down and France was given a freer hand on Morocco. This led to an Anglo-French naval agreement where France agreed to guard both the countries interests in Morocco whilst England agreed to guard both the countries interests in the Channel. This tightened the friendships between the two countries and would have put more pressure on Germany and the Triple Alliance. Although there are many events that led to the outbreak of World War One, the spark was the Assassination of Archduke Franz Ferdinand. He was the heir to the throne of Austria-Hungary and was visiting Sarajevo, the capital of Bosnia. ...read more.

Conclusion

There are many reasons to blame Germany. It was Germany who started of the building of Alliances. These alliances were a major cause to the war. They led to tension between all of the countries. In my opinion Germany took more blame than it should have although all the countries have some responsibility to the outbreak of World War One, in my opinion it is Britain as well as Germany who is most to blame. Germany did create a lot of tension between the major powers as it gained more power and began to dominate Europe. Britain also created a lot of tension between countries as Britain tried to protect her empire and tried to stay the most powerful nation in the world. Also, it surprised Germany when Britain came into the war to help defend Belgium. Germany was surprised Britain had joined the war over a "scrap of paper", it is possible that if Britain had made it clear that she would go to war and support Belgium, Germany may not have gone to war so quickly. In my opinion Britain should have shouldered more blame for the war than it did at the time, Germany suffered more repercussions than all of the other countries, when it was not the only country that deserved the blame. Cathy Lenihan ...read more.

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