The main cause of World War One was the alliances. How far do the sources support this statement?

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The main cause of World War One was the alliances. How far do the sources support this statement?

World War one was a war that happened between 1914 and 1918, which involved mainly European, but also many other powerful countries from all over the world. There is much debate over what caused World War One. Sources B and D suggest that World War One was caused totally or at least partially by the formation of alliances, but on the other hand, Source A and C believe that it is due to militarism. Overall, the sources most strongly suggest that World War One was caused by alliances, therefore agreeing with the statements above.

Sources B and D portray the view that alliances were the main cause of World War One. This message is more prominent in Source B, which is an American cartoon which shows to the readers of the Brooklyn Edge Newspaper what the formation of alliances could mean for the future of Europe. It depicts a scene where Serbia gets attacked by Austria-Hungary, but due to the formation of the Triple Alliance and the Triple Entente, several unrelated countries could be forced into action, therefore creating a World War. This is a fair representation of the war, as all countries in the alliance strive to protect those in their alliance. This is clearly seen through the fact that all the characters, signifying countries, are shouting something on the lines of “If you hurt my friend, I’ll…” From previous knowledge, I know this is right and therefore reliable. However, to fully understand if it is truly agreeing with the statement, the origin and nature needs to be looked at. In this case, it is a cartoon in a newspaper article. Since it is a newspaper article, it is likely to be exaggerated, in order to get more people reading it. Overall, even though it is likely to be exaggerated, it gives a good support from the sources for the interpretation.

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Source D also believes that alliances were the most important rain for World War One, but also states that other factors (militarism) played a part in starting the War. This is clearly seen by the statement: ("but it was her alliance with Germany and the promise of German support that allowed a full-scale rare to break out."). On the other hand, this source also states militarism as the factor that brings about the creation of alliances, which therefore means that it ranks militarism as the major underlying factor as to why the war happened ("Austria had regarded the growing power ...

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