Causes and Consequences of World War I

Belief in inevitability of war and advocacy of war to become supreme major cause for WW1. 5. Anglo-german naval rivalry Britain was supreme at sea and was challenged by germany. Britain couldn’t accept this. The rivalry culminated in WW1. 6. Absence of international organisation Concert of europe was informal group of nations aftr napoleans defeat but couldn’t control its member and didn’t represent the entire free world. The system of pacific settlement of international disputes set up by the hague conference was unsatisfactory.

And couldn’t contain imperial rivalries. 7. Negative role of the press in creating war psychology despite attempts of governments to normalise their relations. 8. Autrian and serbian rivalry Austria-hungary wanted access to sea at the cost of slav territories and serbia represented slav nationalism. The two had contradictory aims. This led to a conflict of interest and was encouraged by the russian czar as well building grounds for war. 9. Personal ambitions of leader. Kaiser william II of germany, austra-hungary, russian leaders(czar and his wife). 10.

The Sarajevo incident Annexation of bosnia-herzegovina by austria in 1908, 2 balkan wars, italian annexation of tripolo ,moroccan crisis along with the japanese threat to peace in the background, the assassination of the crown price of austria-hungary, archduke franze ferdinand with his wife in sarajevo june,1914 was a direct cause for WW1. Consequences The results of the great war were almost as numerous as its causes. By the end of the world war in 1918, american president woodrow wilson proposed peace and made a statement of war aims in his famous ’14 points’ 1.

Open covenant of peace,openly arrived at and Abolition of secret diplomacy 2. Absolute freedom of navigation at sea, outside territorial waters in peace and war except by international action. 3. Removal of eco barriers and establishment of equal trade conditions 4. Reduction in national armaments to the point only needed for domestic security 5. Free,open minded and impartial adjustment of all colonial claims 6. Evacuation of all russia territory and allowing its to politically develop in acc with her own national policy 7. Evacuation and restoration of Belgium 8.

Same for france and return of alsace and Lorraine to it. 9. Readjustment of italian frontiers along clear line of nationality 10. Freest opportunity of autonomous devt for people of austria-hungary 11. Evacuation and restoration of romania,serbia and montenegro and free access to sea for serbia 12. Autonomous devt of the non turkish possessions of the sultan 13. Resurrection of independent polan with access to sea. 14. Formation of a general association of nations for the purpose of affording mutual guarantees of pol independence and territorial integrity to small n great alike.

These were accepted but not followed by the european nations of the peace conference and were later rejected by the american senate after woodrow wilson lost his popularity and presented them befre the senate. Paris peace conference Fightin in WW1 ended with complete surrender of germany in nov,1918. Representatives of allied and associated powers assembled at paris on 18 jan 1919 to draw a new map of europe and the world. Selection of paris as venue unfortunate decision. It was done to take revenge from germany for the french humiliation at the hall of mirrors in versailles aftr the french defeat in the franco-prussian war.

The conference was a victors club as none of the leaders of the defeated countries attended it as they were allowed no say in the conference. The conference was dominated by 4 leaders- woodrow wilson, PM lloyd george of britain, PM of france george celemnceau, italian PM vittorio orlando. It was at this conference that the treaty of Versailles was signed, officially ending WW1 on 28th july 1919. Provisions of treaty of versailles 1. Territorial provisions territorial changes in respect of germany. •alsace and lorraine returned to france •eupene,malmady and mernet given to belgium east germany given to posen • Parts of west prussia and silesia to poland. Poland given access to to sea at the cost of german by way of corridor in west prussia. •port memel and hinterland taken away but fate undecided. Later given to lithuania. •coal mining area of saar demanded by france by nt given to france. Only under temporary control of france. Aftr 15 years- plebiscite conducted whether saar wants to go to germany, france or remain with league of nations • Ausrtia-hungary broken up into small states. New austria small ger speaking landlocked state.

Due to fears of france, germany and austria prevented from uniting without permission of league of nations of which france was permanent member. •small german territory also given to czechoslovakia. •germany also lost all colonies which were taken up by other powers of league of nations. 2. Economic provisions of reparation. •War indemnity cudnt be imposed on germany because a)cost of war borne by allies impossible to return for germany b)woodrow wilson against war indemnity since war cost weren’t only borne by allies but also by defeated powers. so allies demanded compensation for indiscriminate bombing and loss of lives at the hands of germany •no payable amount was fixed. A reparation commission set up to determine the extent of civilian losses keeping in mind germanys capacity to pay back. •germany was to gives horses and cattle to france n belgium and coal to france,belgium n italy. It was to surrender it submarine telegraph cables to allies and surrender all merchant ships more than 1600 tonnes. •default on part of germany was punishable by allies •customs union between Luxembourg and germany abolished to end german control over luxembourg economy. repartion commission submitted its report in april 1921 and total amount payable by germany was 6,600,000,000 pounds. •germany ws to giv trade facilities of certain commodities to allies. Acces to sea to Czechoslovakia and Switzerland. •german rivers and canal internationalised. 3. Disarmament •principle of reduction of arms incorporated in covenant of league. But it was not followed by allied powers. There were severe disarmament provisions for germany that made her a military cripple •army limited to 100,000 troops and 4000 officers.

Recruitment only voluntarily. •navy limited to 6 battle ships,6 light cruisers,12 destroyers and 12 torpedo boats. No submarines. Strength of navy only 15000 men and 1500 officers. War ships in excess were to be dismantled. •debarred from having an air force and naval aircrafts. •german general staff abolished. Allied control commission set up to supervise enforce of these clauses. Set up ws to be funded by germany again. 4. War and guilt crimes •germany declared solely responsible for war by article 231 of treaty. german emporer kaiser william II was found guilty of violation of treaties and international law. He sought asylum in netherlands who refused to hand him over to allies for a trial. •german people could never accept that their country alone was responsible for the war. 5. Provisions regarding international organisation •1st part of treaty provided for the establishment of a world organisation to be known as league of nations. • Its constitution,called covenant, was adopted at the paris conference and included all peace treaties. It was to consist of an assembly,council and secretariat. • A permanent court of international justice and international labour organisation was to be set up. • These bodies were meant to maintain peace,settle international disputes peacefully,punish countries who may break the covenant and improve social and economic life all over the world. The guarantees of the enforcement of the treat were written in part XIV according to which until successful execution of the treaty the entire Rhineland(west of rhine with bridgeheads) would be occupied by allied powers.

Germany was ultimately reduced from a world power to an insignificant small power. She was forced to give up monarchy and accept democracy which was something the country wasn’t prepared for. The treaty was so humiliating that the german had sworn revenge for it. The seeds for WW2 had been sown. Hitler later exploited this situation and imposed dictatorship in 1933 and began rearmament under the excuse that the allies had not reduced their armaments. This led to another arms race,violation of the treaty and eventually culminated in the second world war. Other treaties •treaty of st. ermain with austria on the model of treaty of versailles with excpetion of the reparation clause. •treaty of neuilly with bulgaria •treaty of tianon with hungary •treaties of sevres and luasanne with defeated turkey to separate its constituents and reduce military capacity and pay reparation Fall of Ottoman empire Its fall during the war created many newly independent middle eastern nation states which were quickly taken over by britain france etc. Economic depression The end of the war also caused a temporary economic bubble which soon popped and led to the great depression.