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Alliances in the First World War

Info: 2424 words (10 pages) Essay
Published: 8th Feb 2020 in History

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The first world war that began in August 1914 was a retaliation triggered by the 

assassination of the Franz Ferdinand and his wife by Bosnian revolutionary, Gavrilo Princip.

This event led to declarations of war with the forces of nationalism, imperialism and militarism.

Imperialism wrenched Europe’s ‘Great Powers’ into struggle for ever declining colony and

means. Militarism formed an attraction with military power, fuel led a European weapons match

and encouraged an apprehension of war more or less a frightful one. Nationalism magnified

determination to the point of loftiness and set European opponents in opposition to each other.

 As cited in J. Llewellyn et al(2014) Nationalism was a common enforcement in early 20th

century Europe and a powerful reason of World War I. Many Europeans especially settlers of

the self-named Great Powers had faith in the cultural, economic and military superiority of their

nation. Their presumption was feed by prominent cultivation and the press. Nationalism gave

settlers an overestimated assurance in their nation, government and military force. It persuaded

them that their country was unbiased, conscientious and without criticism. In contrast, nationalist

ideas left behind battling nations, mocking them as threatening, conniving, misleading, and

backward or disrespectful. Nationalist reports motivated many to believe that their country was

jeopardized by the conspiring, conniving and greedy imperialism of its rivals. Nationalist and

militarist eloquence guaranteed them that if war break out, their nation would come out on top.

In array with its deadly brothers, imperialism and militarism, nationalism supplied to a global

deception that implied a European war was both imperative and within possibility (J. Llewellyn

et al, 2014). The German high charge had absolute morale in the Schlieffen Plan in the event of

war, a defensive military approach for crushing Germany’s eastern and western acquaintance

(Russia and France). No nationalist development had an outstanding impingement on the

commencement of war than Slavic groups in the Balkans. Pan-Slavism was a forceful impact in

the region. Slavic nationalism was substantial in Serbia, where it had scale unpreventably in the

late 19th and early 20th centuries. Pan-Slavism was exceptionally against the Austro-Hungarian

Empire and its force and clout over the territory (J. Llewellyn et al, 2014).

 The alliance system divided Europe into two antagonistic division and fused lands

in sync in an agreement to war. As cited in J. Llewellyn et al(2014) Alliances are

conceivably the leading well-known origin of World War I. During the 19th and early 20th

centuries European nations set up, nullified and reconstructed relationship on a routine basis. By

1914, the Great Powers of Europe had straggled themselves into two alliance coalitions. The

existence of these two rival coalitions suggested that war among two nations might mean war

between them all. In the years prior to 1914 an added circumstance in the outbreak of World

War I were minor but important changes to European alliances. Alliances did not make war

necessary or disempower governments or start declarations of war, the influence and ultimate

decision to declare war still depended on national leaders. It was their noble responsibility to

these alliances that was the crucial determination (J. Llewellyn et al, 2014).

 As cited in Taylor (2009) The US entered the World War in acknowledgment to German

dealings that amounted to American lives and disregarded unbiased rights. The guarantee that the

Great War would be the war to end all wars was demolished with Adolf Hitler’s takeover in

Europe and Japan’s assault of Asia that started the World War II. The US entered World War I

and World War II because of the intrusive behavior of Germany and Japan jointly. Literature

used for WWI focused on the economic bond amongst the US and the Entente during WWI as

the sole logic the US entered the war. Literature contend that by granting the Entente to have

endless connection to American trade during WWI and later secure loans to pay for these assets

forced the US to enter the war to secure that the Entente would pay back their debts.

Literature provide precise material on America’s entry farther than this controversy, but they

neglected the main reason the US entered the war was the German use of submarine warfare.

Literature also pointed out that the pro-Entente and pro-British understandings that the majority

of Americans, including President Wilson and his administration, had during the war. World

War II literature established an unbiased view of American interference however, biases still

exist in some disagreements. The leading motivation for the US entry into the wars were

behavior Germany use of unrestricted submarine warfare that resulted in the deaths of

American citizens and Japan’s strike on the US Naval Forces at Pearl Harbor Hawaii on

December 1941. These events were the factors in America’s course during the wars that were

somewhat influenced by Wilson and Roosevelt. The final factors on the US interference was

public opinion in the years before the US entering the wars was completely against America not

intervening. This assumption changed during the wars to promoting the war declarations. The

democratic attributes of the US depend upon that the national greater part support these options,

but it does not feel necessity for collective support, which was necessary during WWI. The

nature of public support during WWI was one that unwillingly accepted the war, although a less

than half remained connected to passiveness. Public opinion in WWII was also not one of unity;

however, the attack on Pearl Harbor contributed unified backing for entering the war. The US

entry into the First and Second World Wars was established on a combo of these three factors.

These factors would attempt to rule how the US would enter the war as well as when.

Public opinion, presidential policies, and foreign events while contradictory during each war,

caused comparable feedback in America that led the US to enter World War I and World War II

(Taylor, 2009).

 As cited in History Editors (2009) as World War I breaks out in Europe, President

Woodrow Wilson properly on August 4, 1941 announce the neutrality of the United States, a

area that a huge amount of Americans preferred. Wilson’s original belief that America could be

fair-minded in hope as well as in action was soon compounded by Germany’s attempted

separation of the British Isles. Britain was one of America’s neighboring trading colleague, and

pressure appeared amongst the United States and Germany when a few U.S. ships en route to

Britain were impaired or sunk by German mines. German government asks pardon and called

the invasion a regrettable misunderstanding. As cited in Hanlon (1992) The first boom of the

Great War’s heavy artillery fire reached the New World, there had already assembled a crucial

alliance opposing American aggressiveness. It combined ethnic groups, such as Irish and Eastern

European immigrants who had resentment against some of the Allied powers; congregations like

the Progressives, suffragettes and prohibitionists who were more interested on the lookout for

their causes than waging war; and Westerners and farmers who did not feel any connection to

Europe. These anti-interventionists were sustained by the long American tradition of

noninvolvement in the political affairs of the Old World and by President Wilson’s early,

relentless declaration of American neutrality (Hanlon, 1992).

 The greater imperative of these treaties was the Treaty of Versailles signed June 28, 1919

ending the war with Germany that was formed by the Paris Peace Conference. It stimulated

controversay and criticism even before the treaty was signed. And when World War II begin 20

years later, the treaty was rejected and blamed for causing the political, economic and military

conditions that led to the 1939-45 global conflict. Although the Treaty resulted failure of peace

and yet two decades later another world war, its real failures are not apparent for over 90 years.

As cited in Keen et el (2012) The Versailles Treaty settled old territorial disputes in Europe, but

the dismemberment of the Russian, German, and Austro-Hungarian empires created new sources

of tension. Wilson saw the flaws in the final treaty, but he hoped that over time the League of

Nations could modify the treaty’s worst exce Lodge did not urge outright rejection of the

Versailles Treaty. He instead proposed adding 14 American reservations. The most important

one required explicit Congressional approval before American troops went overseas. Wilson

refused to accept modifications. Instead he tried to create a groundswell of support for the

League that would force the Republicans to accept the treaty as written. Wilson rejected all

private suggestions that he resign and still refused to accept any reservations to the Versailles

Treaty. With Wilson absent from the public stage, opposition to the League of Nations spread.

His refusal to compromise doomed the treaty. The Senate rejected both the original treaty and

one with Lodge’s reservations attached. The Senate therefore never ratified the Versailles Treaty.

It also refused to accept Armenia as a mandate, despite Wilson’s plea to become the “friends and

advisors”of a people ravaged by wartime Turkish massacres and deportations. It took two more

years for the war to end officially for the United States. In October, 1921, the Senate finally

ratified separate peace treaties with Germany, Austria, and Hungary (the United States had never

been at war with the Ottoman Empire or Bulgaria) (Keen et el, 2012).

 The contributions of the United States military to the Allied attempt were conclusive.

Considering the Russians resolved to end the war, the Germans were free to move several of

their troops from the eastern front to the deadlock in the West. The obviously enormous quantity

of youthful American soldiers answered this possible upper hand and was disappointing to the

Germans. By November 1918 once the American soldiers entered the bloody trenches the war

was over. Contributions to the war achievement were not just restricted to the battlefield. The

whole American economy was assembled to win the war. American civilians provided extra food

and fuel and planted extra vegetables while keeping the furnace turned off. The United States

government enrolled in a extensive promotional campaigns to raise troops and money. Where

opposition was apparent, it was silence, prompting many to question whether American civil

liberties were in danger. In the end, the war was won, but the reconciliation was vanished. The

Treaty of Versailles was presented by President Wilson was rejected by the Senate. Two

threatening decades of political isolationism followed, only to end in an ever more disastrous



  • Hanlon, M. (1992). America’s Turn From Neutrality to Intervention, 1914-1917. Relevance. Volume One, Issue Two. –http://www.worldwar1.com/tgws/rel001.htm
  • History Editors (2009). U.S. Proclaims Neutrality in World War I. A&E Television Networks. –https://www.history.com/this-day-in-history/u-s-proclaims-neutrality-in-world-war-i
  • J. Llewellyn et al. (2014). “Alliances as a Cause of World War I” at Alpha History.-https://alphahistory.com/worldwar1/alliances/
  • J. Llewellyn et al. (2017). “Nationalism as a Cause of World War I” at Alpha History.-https://alphahistory.com/worldwar1/nationalism/
  • Keene, C. & O’Donnell (2012). Visions of America: A History of the United States (2nd ed.). Boston, MA: Pearson.-https://online.vitalsource.com/#/books/9781269721387
  • Taylor, A. (2009). “A Comparative Study of America’s Entries into World War I and World War II.” Electronic Theses and Dissertations. –https://dc.etsu.edu/cgi/viewcontent.cgi?article=3212&context=etd


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