Nationalism Alsace & Lorraine Pan-Slavism –Slavic people share common nationality –Russia largest Slavic country, support Serbia (Slavs) Balkans –Austria-Hungary made up of many ethnic groups –Feared nationalism –Same for Ottoman Empire
Imperialism European empire rivalries Britain threatened by Germany’s quick growth
The Tangled Web of Alliances or Allianceism (made up) Central Powers (Triple Alliance) –Germany, Austria-Hungary, Ottoman Empire Allies (Entente Cordiale) –Britain, France, Russia (US and Italy eventually join) Germany was looking to isolate France, while France was concerned about a German invasion. Both sides made agreements that meant even a small incident was likely to mean all of them being dragged in.
The Spark Murder of Archduke Francis Ferdinand, heir to the Austro-Hungarian Empire –Visited Sarajevo with wife Sophie –Plot by Serbian nationalist group, the Black Hand –Gavrilo Princip murdered the Archduke and his wife on June 28, 1914
The July Crisis Austria strikes back –Some saw assassination as an opportunity to crush Serbia –Kaiser Wilhelm II ’ s “ blank check ” –July ultimatum –Ultimatum = final set of demands –Serbia must end all anti-Austrian agitation and punish anyone involved in the murder plot –Serbia failed to meet all the terms
War in Europe Austria declared war on Serbia on July 28, 1914 Russia mobilized in defense of Serbia Germany declared war on Russia France promised support to Russia Germany declared war on France Italy and Britain still neutral
War in Europe The Schlieffen Plan –German generals wanted to avoid a two-front war with Russia and France –General Alfred von Schlieffen suggested attacking France first –After defeating France, Germany could take on Russia
Why Invade Belgium? European powers had agreed upon Belgian neutrality Neutrality = supporting neither side in a war Britain declared war on Germany