In what ways did the causes of the Second World War differ from the causes of the First World War?
The causes of World War One and World War Two shared both differences and similarities, but overall there were more differences between the two. The social, political, and economic circumstances of the times varied, though at times correlated with each other, but there are extreme differences that help create a different atmosphere for each war.
The assassination of Franz Ferdinand, on the 28th June, 1914, set off World War One; Martel argues “The assassination of Archduke Ferdinand was the final straw in the struggle for mastery in the Balkans”. He was shot by Gavrilo Princip, a member of the Black Hand, a Serbian group set up to fight for the unification of all South Slav territories that had been annexed by Austria-Hungary. Two months after the shooting Austria-Hungary declared war on Serbia, setting off the next chain of events that brought into account the alliance system. In 1938, a year before the start of World War Two, Hitler was growing ever more confident due to the lack of resistance he experienced from any other European country. He had annexed Austria with little or no consequences, and made a deal with France and Britain guaranteeing him the Sudetenland if he did not go after any other territories. In 1939 he broke this deal by occupying Czechoslovakia, and starting to advance on Danzig. At this point, the Allies realized that they must put an end to Hitler’s advance, as they could already see that Hitler had a lot more in mind than just the invasion of Poland.
The Alliance system was present throughout both wars, although as countries surrendered and changed loyalties none of them remained permanent. The alliances system was originally created to help keep the peace in Europe, with the belief that they would act together as a defensive mechanism against any attack, as it was also in their own interest to keep Europe in peace. Nevertheless...
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