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A Total War Essay

1297 words - 6 pages

Adam Brochu Period 8
DUE: 10/24/08 Mrs. Trovato

World War I: A Total War

World War I began in Europe in 1914, and it was the perfect example of total war. Many separate nations became involved in this bloody massacre, and every single one of them were devoted to winning for their own individual reasons. In this warfare, the allies consisted of Russia, France, Great Britain, Italy and the United States. These nations fought against Germany, Austria-Hungary, the Ottoman Empire, and ...view middle of the document...

This is how Russia became involved; they intervened in order to protect Serbia. The major event that set off this chain of alliances between nations was the retaliation by Austria-Hungary on the Serbian Empire. Russia created an alliance with France and Great Britain, in order to protect each other. These two major nations joined Russia and Serbia as the main allied states in World War I. After Austria-Hungary invaded Serbia for revenge, Russia declared war on the Austrians. But Germany, having an alliance with Austria, decided to declare war on Russia. These two nations were joined by the Ottoman Empire and Bulgaria as the main central powers.
It is safe to say that the alliances made by these nations played a vital role in the outcome of World War I. Several treaties and agreements were made, but they failed to keep peace and thus, contributed to the war. In 1879, Germany sided with Austria and Britain, and agreed to the “Dual Alliance.” This was made as a result of Russia supporting the Balkan States in their quest to defeat Turkey. Austria had intervened in the first place, but they were soon followed by Britain and Germany. Russia had to give up the Treaty of San Stefano and sign the Treaty of Berlin, and as a result, they were humiliated. This anger was harnessed into hatred for one person – Otto Von Bismarck. In 1882, the much maligned leader of Germany made another agreement called “The Triple Alliance.” This said that if either Germany or Italy was attacked by France, they would aid each other. It also said that Italy would remain neutral in the event that Austria was attacked by Russia. However, this alliance failed to keep peace because Italy and France made secret agreements that each would remain neutral if the other declared war on another nation. Due to this secret alliance made in 1902, and the Racconigi Agreement made between Italy and Russia in 1909, the Triple Alliance became null and void. Even before that treaty, there was the Franco-Russian Alliance of 1893. Kaiser Wilhelm II focused in on Germany’s military and political ties with Austria. Due to their rising suspicion, Russia turned to the side of France. This secret alliance did make any peace; instead, it just created more controversy. This alliance ended the isolation of France and created an alliance rival to the Triple Alliance. Another important alliance in this mess was actually one that failed. The German and the British agreement never worked because Germany wanted Britain to join the Triple Alliance. Out of fear that they would have to fight for inconsequential gains, Britain refused. Not only that, but the German naval expansion threatened Britain, and Germany’s colonial interests in China clashed with Britain once again. So, these once united nations were now fighting against each other. These secret alliance certainly caused more trouble than they were worth. Furthermore, in 1904, the...

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