Setting The Stage For World War One Essay

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Setting the Stage for World War One History identifies the assassination of Archduke Franz Ferdinand at Sarajevo on June 28, 1914, as the direct cause of World War One. Nonetheless, historians are in agreement that there were many factors contributing to the conflict between the Great powers, resulting in a large-scale war to break out. The second industrialization—also known as the Technological Revolution—from 1870-1914 cultivated industrial societies to emerge and leading to “new forms of states and of diplomatic and military alignments” (Barzun). These “military alignments” were later to be known as The Great Powers of Europe. The Great Powers were divided into two alliances: The Triple Alliance between Germany, Italy & Austria-Hungry—established in 1882, and The Triple Entente between Britain, Russia & France—established in 1907 (Tonge). There were three main rivalries between the powers: Germany & France over the Alsace-Lorraine territory (5,067 square miles of land that was ceded by France to Germany in 1871 after the Franco-German War), Russia & Austria over the Balkans peninsula in Southeast Europe (a desirable territory for its strategically vital geographic location—surrounded by four seas: the Black Sea, the Mediterranean, the Adriatic and the Aegean, and situated at the crossroads of three major empires—Ottoman, Russian and Austro-Hungarian), and Britain & Germany over naval and economic power. In the years prior to the war, military spending greatly

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