Impact of WWI Essay

Excerpt from Essay :

World War I

The Causes and How America Joined the War

The events that led to the causes of the first world war had its roots in the Balkans in late July 1914 and there are causes including political, territorial, and economic conflicts among the great European powers in the four decades leading up to the war. Militarism, a complex web of alliances, imperialism and nationalism were some of the other causes that led up to the First World War.

The root for the Second World War lay in the peace accords and the punishments that were meted out to the Germans after the First World War and the sense of humiliation and economic debacle following the end of the First World War.

The animosity between the Americans and the Germans started with the sinking of the Lusitania as she made her maiden voyage from Liverpool to New York in September 1907. The ship was sunk after the German submarine U. 20 fired a torpedo into the ship's side. 1119 passengers of the 1,924 aboard died in the incident which included 114 Americans.

Later it was revealed that Walter Schwieger, the captain of the U-Boat that sank the Lusitania had watched through his periscope as the torpedo exploded and noted the result in his log, "The ship stops immediately and heals over to starboard quickly, immersing simultaneously at the bow. It appears as if the ship were going to capsize very shortly."

The Americans were enraged after the incident and it had immediate political fallout. Secretary of State William Jennings Bryan resigned and President Wilson strongly protested against the Germans. This though the Germans later announced that passenger ships would be sunk only with prior warning and appropriate safeguards for passengers, this incident sowed the seeds of animosity between the Americans and Germans.

Tracing the roots of the wars leads to the very controversial note that was sent German foreign secretary Arthur Zimmermann, famously known as Zimmerman Note,

While American involvement in the First World War was near reality by early 1917, the Zimmermann Note accelerated the process. The note was sent by Zimmermann to Heinrich von Eckardt, the German ambassador to Mexico on January 16, 1917. The note was decoded and revealed the German plot to use Mexico in a proxy war against America if the U.S., who was until officially neutral to the warring factions, entered the war on the side of the Allies. The revelation of the contents of the note sparked a furor in the U.S. souring the already soured relations between U.S. And Germany. This note, coupled with the clandestine submarine attacks by the Germans finally convinced the U.S. To enter the war against the Germans.

The Russian revolution in 1917 was a fall out of the First World War. Russia was completely in shambles after two years of total war and the resources of the country were strained. The great industrial advancements that the country had made in the two decades preceding the First World War were neutralized by the strains of the war. In this condition, there was tremendous outrage against the autocratic rulers of the country.

The Russian economy had collapsed by the end of the war and there was acute shortage food and fuel which trigged the February Revolution in Russia. The Bolsheviks triumphed in Russia and largely reunited the old empire by 1921. However this resulted in a communist rule and a deep sense of resentment against capitalism and imperialism, directed specifically against the British and America. This led to the country fueling the Second World War.

At the same time, the famous 14 point resolution that U.S. President Woodrow Wilson had outlined as the aims of the United States' war aims, first disclosed in a speech given to Congress on 8 January 1918. These were later known as the 14 points and were discussed in the negotiations with the Germans and the Central Force after the Allies won the war.

President Woodrow Wilson was of the view that the "Fourteen Points" would form the basis for a just and lasting peace. During the Paris Peace Conference, the Allies of U.S. In the war opposed to some of the points in the "fourteen points."

Apart from the 14 points of the peace treaty with Germany, UK wanted that Germany should make repatriation payments for losses incurred by the Allied countries during the…

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