Alliances: formal agreements between countries or nations which states that in case of threat, one country will cooperate and protect the other. This was a major cause of w nationalism

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World History 3201:

Unit 1: The First World War: 1914-1918

Important terms:

**p. 21 South African War**

  1. Alliances: formal agreements between countries or nations which states that in case of threat, one country will cooperate and protect the other. This was a major cause of WW1.

  1. Nationalism: the strong sense of pride in one’s country and loyalty towards that country.

  1. Economic Rivalry: competition between nations to produce the greatest economic growth. A belief that one country should be better and bigger than another by means of money, land, resources, etc. During the years leading up to WW1, Germany and Britain were in constant competition for bigger and better factories, industries and territories.

  1. Arms Race: Competition between rival states to gain superior military weapons and technologies.

  1. Alliance system: the division of Europe into two rival camps: the Triple Entente and the Triple Alliance.

(1) Nationalism: Loyalty to a country manifested in some

countries as a desire to take over new territory. (Ex. France,

Germany) Nationalism is also evident in some areas as groups

tried to break free of controlling empires. (Ex. Austro- Hungarian Empire) In other countries, nationalism emerged as a desire to maintain the status quo. (Ex. Britain wanted to keep its position as dominant world power)

(2) Economic Rivalry: Germany and Britain were economic

competitors. By 1900, German industries had surpassed British industries due to:

1. Newer factories

2. Equipment with latest technology

3. German education system concentrated on science

and technology. British and French economies kept growing

but could not keep pace with Germany.
(3) The Arms Race: Germany wanted to increase military power to equal Britain. Britain wanted to keep favorable balance of power. Both countries embarked on large-scale armament programs. Britain's navy was twice the size of any other power. Germany tried to rival Britain's navy by building new ships, and Britain responded by building more ships. Britain had been Germany's ally, but now sought alliances with its former rivals, France and Russia.
(4) System of Alliances: Alliance system provided Europe with the illusion of peace and stability. However, tensions were mounting. European countries signed various alliances and allowed them to lapse. Eventually, Europe became divided intotwo hostile camps:
(1) Triple Alliance: Germany, Austria-Hungary, Italy

(2) Triple Entente: France, Britain, Russia.

PAX BRITANNIA: a period of general international peace under the military power of Britain.
NOBLE DESTINY: the belief that a course of events is predetermined by superior status and ideals.
DREADNOUGHT: a battleship introduced by Britain in 1906 that represented a revolution in naval shipbuilding.
TRENCHES: deep ditches in which the troops lived at the front during WW1. After WW1 trench warfare disappeared.
ALLIES: Britain, France, Russia and other countries.
CENTRAL POWERS: Germany, Austria-Hungary, Italy.
BALKANS- an area in Europe which included Bosnia, Herzegovina, Serbia, Bulgaria and parts of Greece. Turkey, Austria-Hungary and Russia all had conflicting interests in this area, which was bound to cause conflicts.
Explain: "The Balkans was like a powder keg ready to explode."

The incident which ignited World War 1 (the last spark):

On June 28, 1914 the Archduke Franz Ferdinand (and his wife Sophie) was assassinated in Sarajevo, the capital of Bosnia, by Gavrilo Princip. Ferdinand was the heir to the throne of the Austro-Hungarian Empire. Princip was a member of the Black Hand, a Serbian nationalist organization dedicated to obtaining independence from Austria-

Hungary. Austria-Hungary gave Serbia a 48 hour ultimatum, and when Serbia did not reply, A-H declared war. They fully expected the war to be very short, and when it was over, they would control more territory. But Russia came to Serbia's aid, Germany came to Austria's aid, and before you knew it, the situation had escalated into World War 1.

ULTIMATUM -a demand one country makes on another which, if rejected, may end negotiations and start a war.



Steps to war on p. 39 (Figure 2.4) are very important.

Most countries felt that World War 1 was necessary, but that it would be a short war.

Why were so many prepared to accept war?

1) Russia- wanted to extend its influence in Balkans

2) Austria- Hungary- saw Russian goals as a threat to bring Serbia under its control
3) Germany- wanted to break the powerful Triple Entente
4) France- wanted to maintain and increase power, but felt

threatened by Germany

5) Britain- wanted to maintain the status quo
SCHLIEFFEN PLAN- a German plan in 1914 to attack France through its unprotected borders, and thus have a short war. France would have to be defeated in less than 6 weeks, before the Russians attacked from the east.
PLAN XVII - the French plan for a short war which called for a rapid and devastating attack on Alsace-Lorraine. The German army would be caught between the French army in the west and the Russian army in the east.
STALEMATE- neither side advancing. When the war ended in 1918, the opposing lines were at almost the same position as they had been when they were first established in 1914.
BOLSHEVIKS- an extremist wing of the Russian Democratic Party that opposed taking part in WW 1. Led by Lenin, the party seized power during the Russian Revolution in 1917 and later became the Russian Communist Party.
BEAUMONT HAMEL: On July 1, 1916 over 700 members of the Royal Newfoundland Regiment went into battle at Beaumont Hamel, France. The Newfoundlanders were expected to go over the top, across "no man's land", and attack the waiting Germans. The battle lasted approximately 45 minutes. The next morning only 68 Newfoundlanders

answered the roll call. The rest were killed or missing. 91% of the Royal Newfoundland Regiment had become casualties. This was part of the larger Battle of the Somme.

NO MAN'S LAND- the area of land that lay between the land controlled by the opposing armies.
BATTLE OF JUTLAND- the first major naval battle between Britain and Germany in WW 1. Neither side won this battle.
BATTLE OF TANNENBERG- a battle in 1914 where the Germans outmanoeuvred a larger Russian force and won.
Why did the Germans win this battle?

1) Russian supply system failed, leaving the troops exhausted and half-starved

2) Russian communications had broken down

3) Russian high command made fatal mistakes regarding the deployment of Russian armies.

Problems the Russian army had in World War 1:

1) Russian army was ill-equipped

2) Russia did not have a strong munitions industry, and due to

German blockade could not get arms from its allies

3) Only 1 in 3 soldiers had a gun. The rest fought with pitchforks and swords, and when someone was killed, they took their guns.

4) defeat after defeat led to very low morale and confidence.

How World War 1 affected Russia:

1) Over 3 million Russian soldiers killed or captured

2) Constant defeats, plus poverty and corruption, led to a loss of confidence in the czar.

3) People marched in the streets, demanding "peace, bread, and land".

4) Czarist government was overthrown and replaced by Bolsheviks (Communist) in 1917.
ARMISTICE: a temporary truce between two opposing parties.
NAVAL BLOCKADE: to cut off a country from contact with the outside world.
U-BOAT: a German submarine
TREATY OF BREST-LITOVSK: signed between Russia and

Germany in March 1918, it ended Russia's involvement in WW1. Russia ceded land to Germany and allowed Germany to enter the Ukraine. Once this was accomplished, Germany dominated Eastern Europe and could concentrate fully on the Western Front.

New inventions first used in World War 1:

1) Tanks

2) Planes

3) Gas

4) Gas masks

5) Machine guns

6) Submarine

ZIMMERMAN TELEGRAM- sent on January 16, 1917 by German Foreign Minister Arthur Zimmerman to Count von Bemstorff, the German ambassador in the United States, to be forwarded to the president of Mexico. Basically, it said that Germany intended to begin unrestricted submarine warfare in February. They hoped the United States would stay neutral, but in case they didn't, Germany invited

Mexico to join an alliance with them, promising Mexico generous financial support and to let them take back the lost territory in Texas, New Mexico and Arizona. This telegram was intercepted by the British and helped draw the United States into World War 1.

Allies: Russia, France, British Empire (including Canada and

Newfoundland), Italy, United States, Japan, Romania, Serbia, Belgium, Greece, Portugal, Montenegro.

Central Powers: Germany, Austria-Hungary, Turkey, Bulgaria.
LUSITANIA: a British ocean liner torpedoed by German U-boats in 1915. There were 1198 victims, including 128 Americans.
WOODROW WILSON: the president of the United States duringWW1.
Why did the US enter World War 1? How did their entry affect the outcome of the war?

Major reasons for Germany's defeat:

1) Morale of the German forces was cracking

2) One by one, Germany's allies bowed out of the war

3) Germany had run out of reserves

4) German soldiers still fighting were exhausted, ill-equipped and demoralized

5) The Allies were physically and psychologically bolstered by the arrival of American troops

ROBERT BORDEN: the prime minister of Canada during WW1
FOURTEEN POINTS- US President Woodrow Wilson's statement of principles that he believed should be the basis of the peace settlement at the end of WW1.
Wilson's Fourteen Points: (Paraphrased)

1) No more secret treaties

2) The seas to be free to merchant ships at all times

3) No restrictions on trade between countries

4) Countries to reduce their armaments

5) All claims to colonies to be treated in the interests of the people living there

6) Russia to be free to choose her own system of government

7) Belgium to be evacuated

8) Alsace-Lorraine to go back to France

9) Italy's frontiers to be redrawn on the basis of nationality

10) The peoples of the Austro-Hungarian Empire to be free

11) The peoples in the Balkans should be free to form their own countries

12) The peoples in the Turkish Empire should be free to form their own countries

13) Poland to be recreated and given access to the sea

14) A League of Nations should be set up
Why did the peace process at the end of WW1 seem doomed from the start?
1) The defeated European nations were banned from the peace process

2) New communist government in Russia was refused representation

3) Decision-making power rested in hands of 3 governments- Britain, France and the US
TREATY OF VERSAILLES- the peace settlement that ended WW1
ARMISTICE- a temporary truce between two opposing parties
PARIS PEACE CONFERENCE- 30 Allied nations attended the conference. No defeated nations or Russia were invited.

Direct damages of war :

  1. 10 million people killed

  2. 180 billion dollars in direct costs

  3. 150 billion dollars in indirect costs

  4. The end of 4 big empires

Reparations: Compensation in money or materials paid to victorious countries by defeated ones. This compensation would pay for the damages of war.

Demilitarized zone: A place where military activity is forbidden.

Peace Conference 1919

The allies who won the war needed to decide on how to proceed now that the war was over. Nations had to be re-established, damages had to be repaired and responsibility for it all had to be assigned to someone.

January 18th 1919, a peace conference was held in Paris. This was previously agreed upon during the armistice signing in November 1918. The reason for this conference was to decide upon post-war Europe. The big three, the three leaders holding this peace conference were: Woodrow Wilson of the United States, David Lloyd George of Great Britain and Georges Clemenceau of France. They, along with representatives or diplomats of 32 different allied nations met to discuss the fate of the world. Only the 3 governments mentioned above could make final decisions. The defeated nations were not permitted to have representation at this conference. Germany and Russia were among the nations forbidden from attending.

Why did the peace process have an air of defeat right from the beginning?

  1. The defeated nations were not allowed access to the conference for PEACE. (Ironic hey?)

  2. The new communist government in Russia was refused participation

  3. The deciding power rested with only 3 countries; GB, France and U.S. Basically, their idea was: this is how we decide peace will go…ok? Objections? Good! Don’t bother anyway !

From this conference came the agreement or the Treaty of Versailles which definitively ended WW1 on the 28th of June 1919.

The main objectives of the Big 3 at the peace conference in Paris:

United States:

  • They were determined to establish a new world order based on Wilson’s 14 points.

  • Resume commercial trade so as to prosper once again.

  • Assure that Great Britain and France pay back their loans given during the war.

France: (what is to be most of all remembered is that they wanted some organisation to monitor threat-national security and financial reparations)

  • World Security. The threat of German military power be abolished.

  • Alsace-Lorraine be returned to them (fairly won during a quest dating pre-WW1)

  • They wanted rights to the Rhineland-an important military training area for Germany.

  • Instead they settled upon the Rhineland becoming a demilitarized zone whereby Germany and her army was forbidden from entering.

  • Compensation for damages caused by war.

  • The leaders of this conference decided upon 30 billion dollars being the sum of compensation that Germany would have to pay for all damages and that France receive 52% of that amount.

Great Britain:

  • They wanted to ensure security of the sea lanes to its empire. (prohibiting German submarines and heavily reducing its navy)

  • Germany’s acquired colonies were to be redistributed amongst the allies.

  • George did believe however that if all that compensation be forced upon Germany then their country could fall into the hands of communism-having an economy so crippled. Both George and his colleague, Winston Churchill believed that they as a whole should lighten the load of the 30 billion dollar reparations clause. (as they saw happen in Russia)

The main terms of the Treaty:

Security: A League of Nations to be formed to monitor threat and squash it where needed so as to avoid another war.


    1. Alsace-Lorraine was to be returned to France

    2. Poland be free as well as the city of Danzig under the league of Nations

    3. Germany had to relinquish all overseas colonies to the League of Nations and to be redistributed amongst Britain, France and Japan.


      1. German army reduced to 100 000 troops

      2. No air force

      3. Most naval vessels and submarines to be handed over to allies

      4. A demilitarized zone created


        1. Pay war reparations to France and Belgium for damages

        2. Reparations for shipping damage by turning over part of its merchant marine fleet

Admission of War Guilt:

This was the worst of all the terms of the treaty for the German people! They were forced to accept responsibility for starting the war. They could almost deal with most of the clauses but this drove them over the edge

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