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Analyse the role played and the responsibility in the outbreak of war in 1914 by any two nations (with exception to Germany)

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Introduction

Standard Level History Analyse the role played and the responsibility in the outbreak of war in 1914 by any two nations (with exception to Germany) Michael Yip, Dartford Grammar Nations and their subsequent actions precipitated the outbreak of war. The statement is a given, when considering the fundamental logic of cause and effect. Despite such simplicity, the events prior to WWI were a complex tangle of individual nations? contextual factors, intentions and (subsequently,) actions which would inherently accelerate (and destabilise) Europe to the point at which war would break out. There are numerous examples of ?complex tangles of actions?, spewing from a variety of different nations. Despite their importance, one should not forget the impact of contextual factors and intentions; it is these that ultimately affect actions. Whilst each individual power?s role in WWI are meaningful and worth analysing on their part, Austria- Hungary and Serbia are of both particular importance and interest as events prior to war consistently revolve around the significant actions of these two nation states, interlinking these. Also, Serbia had always been a massive problem of Austrian- Hungarian foreign policy and severe concern. Whilst significant actions do not directly correlate to heightened responsibility- each nation has some level of responsibility for the outbreak of war, whether their intentions apparent today are good or bad. It should be after careful consideration of (at the very least) ...read more.

Middle

Firstly, Austria issues an Ultimatum- which, in short, demanded the relinquishment of Serbian sovereignty to the Austrian- Hungarian State. This was made clearer in the sixth demand (which Serbia rejected), which demanded for Austrian police to have jurisdiction within Serbian borders and to investigate themselves links to the terrorist group, the ?Black Hand? (which the assassin belonged to). The issuance of the Ultimatum was aggressive- the demands impossible to agree to without compromising sovereign integrity, and the existence of the State of Serbia itself. After the war, it was made clear that the demands of the Ultimatum were in fact intentionally made impossible to agree to- precipitating some form of retaliation from Austria- Hungary (upon Serbia?s refusal), be that diplomatically or (quite certainly,) through military means. This shows Austrian- Hungarian aggression and want for war. Admittedly, Austria- Hungary?s role in events prior to the war only dramatically increased in magnitude and aggression as time went on- it was in latter stages of relative peace that Austria- Hungary issued the Ultimatum. Considering past events, what is the extent of Austria- Hungary?s responsibility for causing the war? Serbia?s actions are not much justified, I think. Colonialism was a fever that swept the few capable, European states. In addition, Austria- Hungary?s foreign policy on was not as aggressive as Germany?s Weltpolitik, which was the most aggressive nationalist- Imperialist policy. ...read more.

Conclusion

In any case, the intention was to unite all Serbian people, which was justifiable. The refusal of the Ultimatum is perhaps complex to argue whether or not it holds responsibility to start of the war. Whilst preserving sovereignty was vital, and influenced decision most- one may ask if Serbia accepted all the terms of the Ultimatum whether the war would have broken out. Austria- Hungary would be unlikely to declare war once the Austrian police had ingratiated it within Serbian circles, to slowly decay its independence. Despite these conflicts of sacrifice, I believe that the refusal was justified; despite the war that ensued (other factors and other nations would have played a part). Assuming that Serbia did not sponsor the assassination of Archduke Franz Ferdinand and his wife, I believe their responsibility of causing the war to be minimal, much more so than Austria- Hungary?s. Serbia did not, for example, immediately press for war to settle the matter. Serbia acted solely in the interests of itself; uniting its people, expanding (to reasonable lengths,) territorially and rejecting the Ultimatum. In conclusion, Serbia?s responsibility and role which lead to war in 1914 was that of a lesser one, if negligible in accordance to her virtually nonexistent expansionist or aggressive aims, acting solely for the interests for its people, whereas that of Austria- Hungary?s was greater with her aggressive strategies with unnecessary Balkan ambitions to fight a long, bloody war. ...read more.

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