The Causes of World War I Essay

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The Causes of World War I World War I was the result of certain countries aggression towards others and by the rising nationalism of the European nations. Economic and imperial competition and fear of war triggered military alliances and an arms race, which further escalated the tension contributing to the outbreak of war. At the settlement of the Congress of Vienna in 1815, the idea of nationalism was ignored to preserve the peace. Germany and Italy were divided into states but nationalist changes and revolutions led to the unification of Italy in 1861 and that of Germany in 1871. Another result of the Franco-Prussian War of 1870-71 was that France was left furious over the loss of…show more content…
When the French occupied Tunisia, Bismarcktook advantage of Italian anger towards France and created the Triple Alliance between Germany, Italyand Austria- Hungary in 1882. In exchange for Italy's agreement to stay neutral if war broke out between Austria-Hungary and Russia, Germanyand Austria-Hungary would protect Italy from France. Russiaand Austria-Hungary grew suspicious of each other over conflicts in the Balkans in 1887, but Bismarck repaired the damage to his alliances with a Reinsurance Treaty with Russia, allowing both to stay neutral if the other was at war. However, after Kaiser William II sacked Bismarck in 1890, the dislike of Slavs kept Bismarck's successors from renewing the agreement with Russia. France took advantage of this opportunity to get an ally, and the Franco- Russian Entente was formed in 1891, which became a formal alliance in 1894. Particularly the large navy William II was building contributed to British distrust of Germany. As a result, Britain and France overlooked imperialistic conflict between them and formed the Entente Cordiale in 1904. Russia formed an Entente with Britain in 1907 after they had reached an understanding with Britain's ally Japan and William II had further ignored Russia by supporting Austrian ambitions in the Balkans. The Triple Entente, an informal partnership between Great Britain, France and Russia, now
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