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United Kingdom France Russia Triple Entente -UK -France -Russia Germany Austria- Hungary Triple Alliance -Germany -Austria-Hungary -Italy (for now) Italy.

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Presentation on theme: "United Kingdom France Russia Triple Entente -UK -France -Russia Germany Austria- Hungary Triple Alliance -Germany -Austria-Hungary -Italy (for now) Italy."— Presentation transcript:

1 United Kingdom France Russia Triple Entente -UK -France -Russia Germany Austria- Hungary Triple Alliance -Germany -Austria-Hungary -Italy (for now) Italy Neutral Countries (for now) -Belgium -Switzerland -Ottoman Empire -Serbia Belgium Switzerland Ottoman Empire Serbia Europe in 1914

2 The Causes of World War I Militarism Alliance system Imperialism Nationalism The assassination of Franz Ferdinand – June 28, 1914

3 The Horrors of the First World War

4 The Schlieffen Plan

5 The War Begins – 1914 June 28: Franz Ferdinand assassinated July 28: Austria-Hungary declares war on Serbia July 31: Russia mobilizes army August 1: Germany declares war on Russia August 3: Germany declares war on France

6 Germany’s Dilemma BELGIUM

7 The Schlieffen Plan in Theory Drawn up in 1897; enacted in 1914 Germany’s plan to avoid a two-front war Key assumptions:  Russia was strong but slow to mobilize  France was weak and could be defeated quickly  France would have to be outflanked  Britain would stay neutral Step 1: invade France through Belgium Step 2: move troops back east to defeat Russia


9 The Schlieffen Plan in Practice: What Germany Got Wrong August 3: Germany declares war on France August 4: Germany invades neutral Belgium Belgium resists the invasion, slowing down Germany; Britain comes to Belgium’s aid France resists the invasion Russia mobilizes in ten days Sparks the “Race to the Sea”“Race to the Sea”

10 New Weapons + Old Tactics = Stalemate

11 Trench Warfare Major defensive formation = the trench Intended to cover soldiers from enemy fire Systems of fortified ditches, defended with barbed wire Space in between = “no man’s land”


13 Life in the Trenches Confined space Little to do Frequent enemy fire Diseases Rats Mud Trench foot

14 A bad case of trench foot The next image is extremely graphic

15 But life outside the trenches is worse

16 New weapons: the flamethrower

17 New weapons: poison gas


19 British soldiers blinded by mustard gas

20 Puppies need gas masks, too

21 New weapons: machine gun

22 New weapons: barbed wire

23 New weapons: long-range artillery

24 Questions to ponder If you were a solider in the trenches on the Western Front, what’s the last thing you’d want to be ordered to do? Why on earth would officers order frontal charges?

25 From a British trench warfare manual The attack on such a, system of defenses as has been described demands in all ranks dash and gallantry of a very high order, and in the subordinate leader, clown to the lowest grades, a quick perception, rapid decision, and intelligent initiative. It is more than ever' the case that success depends upon qualities of leadership in subordinate commanders, upon rapid appreciation and readiness to accept responsibility on the part of the man on the spot. Much can be done in peace training to foster these qualities and to impress on even the most subordinate leaders the necessity for acting, in cases of urgency, on their own responsibility.

26 Result: a stalemate 1914-1918 Situation on the Western Front in which neither side could win, since the defense was stronger than the offense Led to enormous casualties  Battle of Gallipoli (1916): 250,000 casualties  Battle of Verdun (1916): 975,000 casualties  Battle of the Somme (1916): 1,250,000 casualties

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