The Role of Conflict in the 20th Century World

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In the 20th century world, conflict became a means for imperialistic endeavors and colonization, as empires sought to fight against diplomacy in an effort towards expansion and for power. The campaigns to conquer foreign lands have always been dangerous and expensive ventures. During the second half of the nineteenth century, many Europeans came to believe that imperial expansion and colonial domination were crucial for the survival of their states and societies. Because imperialism and colonization lead to sources of raw materials of vital products, necessary in an increasing European population, as well as increasing national pride in this time of nationalism, this could be one of the causes why the 20th century became a violent one.

Nationalism sparked imperialistic endeavors; and the reunification of many European nations, yet the deterioration of empires. It caused threats and acts of succession of smaller states from larger empires, which started international conflict. Conflict was an outcome of imperialistic endeavors, such as Germany and Italy. Germany’s imperialistic endeavors began in the 1800s with its reunification under Otto Von Bismarck. Italy’s imperialistic endeavors also began in the 1800s with the reunification of central Italy. By the 1900s, both Italy and Germany wanted to restore themselves to their glory days of the First Reich, and the Holy Roman Empire.

The 20th century became the most violent in our world history because of the world wars and the aggressive events that came along with the wars. By 1914, Europe’s major powers had transformed into two - the Triple Alliance or the Central Powers (Germany and Austria-Hungary, Italy) and the Triple Entente (UK, France, Russia). The Great War began in July of 1914 and is notable for the establishment of civilians being targets of warfare. At the end of four years of warfare, it is estimated that the war killed 15 million people and wounded another 20 million. Another world...
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