America and the Great War
Following the assassination of Archduke Franz Ferdinand on 28 June 1914 there was a chain reaction that many contribute to the most immediate cause of World War I. However, prior to the start of the 20th century there were many changes going on in and around Europe that can also be considered as root causes to the rise of hostilities between the countries of Europe. This essay will discuss the events that ultimately lead to the beginning of World War I, the events that drew the United States into the War, the events that led to the defeat of the Treaty of Versailles, and what effect the war had on America’s role in the world during the 1920s and 1930s. Firstly, the forces of nationalism, imperialism and militarism had a great many influence to the rise of hostilities that lead the beginning of World War I. Nationalism was a long-term cause of World War I, as well as many of the other causes, nationalism takes time to create. People are not born with the love of their country; instead they must learn to love it and thus nationalism requires a longer period of time to complete (Brown, 2009). Until the mid to late 19th century many European “nations”, that is those peoples sharing a common language and similar culture, were not united in an all-encompassing state. However, following the assassination of Archduke Franz Ferdinand a rise of nationalism in the Pan-Slavism movement and also the German speaking states occurred. Germany felt nearly unstoppable as a world power following the Franco-Prussian War and because of this national pride felt that they would have no problem expanding their territory using imperialism. Specifically, Germany was attempting to control lands in Africa, a place that Britain and France were already established (Brown, 2009). As a result, Britain and France became closer allies in the conflict against Germany. Britain and France quickly found that by keeping Germany out of Africa, the Germans would...
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