Free «World War I» Essay Sample
World War I was one of the largest, deadliest and global events in history. It started in Europe in 1914 and ended in 1918. It was triggered by the assassination of Archduke Franz Ferdinand of Austria-Hungary by Bosnian Gavrilo Princip in Sarajevo in late June 1914. As a result, a diplomatic crisis between Serbia and Austria-Hungary arose, and within few weeks, the war emerged and spread around the world. According to Gardner (7), many military men, including those from Europe had prepared for the battle that led to the deaths of more than nine million combatants and seven million civilians. The use of technology, industrial complex, and tactics in the warfare worsened the casualty rate. The war brought about major political changes that included revolutions in many countries involved in it. There has been a debate as to whether it was inevitable or not, and I support the first position.
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World War I was totally inevitable since many nations had formed secret alliances based on mutual defense agreements that led them to engage in the conflict. Europe had already split into two sides that were hostile to each other. Particularly, there were Triple and Entente alliances. The former involved Germany, Italy, and Austria-Hungary, while the latter was formed between Russia and France. These alliances caused a lot of tension around the globe (Sheffield). Moreover, other countries mainly concentrated on militarism by building enormous armies and navies for the purpose of attacking enemies as well as defending themselves. In addition, the civil authorities were controlled by military officers, who contributed to decision making a lot.
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Apart from that, hatred among countries took a center stage, whereby France and Germany disliked and loathed each other. According to Lind, the major cause of such situation was the desire by France to reclaim the lost territory of Alsace and Lorraine from Germany. Since the latter was a military state, it had a desire to widen its borders by acquiring more provinces from the former to get more raw materials and improve trading. Hence, it explains its motive to engage in war. Moreover, Austria and Russia had the same interest in the conflict as France. None of these countries predicted a dismay that happened since the historical war was an affair lasting several years (Lind). Due to that, every nation had an excuse to start the conflict, and if the Archduke had not been killed, Serbia and Austria would have attacked each other.
Moreover, another reason that made World War I inevitable was the need for nations to acquire power. For example, Germany had a lot of confidence in becoming a powerful state and had prepared for such eventuality beforehand (Lind). Because of that, it wanted to fight its counterparts to gain more power and take control of political matters in other nations. Great Britain, Russia and France also had similar if not absolutely common political goals and interests (Lind). Therefore, sooner or later, these countries would have participated in the war to increase their power on other territories.
In conclusion, World War I was one of the largest conflicts in history. It led to the death of many combatants and civilians. In my opinion, World War I was inevitable. Even if Archduke Franz Ferdinand of Austria-Hungary had not been assassinated by Serbia, hatred between the countries, hunger for more power and secret alliances that were formed between European countries would have contributed to the war. Many states were waiting for an opportunity to happen before they could take the next course of action. Thus, the assassination was just an excuse since it only escalated the war.