1914 Size of military in peacetime Size of military in August 1914 Total Population Russia1,423,0004,400,000 174,000,000 Germany870,0001,750,000 68,000,000 Austria-Hungary350,0001,200,000 51,000,000 Britain245,000733,000 45,000,000 France700,0001,100,000 40,000,000 In all of the Great powers, military spending increased greatly in the years prior to the war. All except Britain had conscription (draft). France had the highest proportion of its population in the army. I. Militarism & Arms Race I. Militarism & Arms Race
187018801890190019101914 141195231402433597 1890-1913 Increase in Military Spending Russia19% Germany158% Austria-Hungary160% Britain117% France92% Total Defense Expenditures for the Great Powers in millions of dollars. New Military Technology
German Military Planning: Germany was convinced that war with the Triple Entente was inevitable. It devised the Schlieffen Plan. The Schlieffen Plan was a strategy for a two front-war that called for a military thrust westward toward Paris, France at the first sign of Russian mobilization in the east. The hope was to knock the French out of the war before the Russians could attack.
Tensions & Conflicts: 1873-1914 8.First Moroccan Crisis (1905) Fr vs. Ger 9.Russo-Japanese War (1905) 10.The Anglo-Russian Convention (1907) Persia 11.Triple Entente (1907) Br, Fr, Rus 12.Ottoman government overthrown by Young Turks 13.The Bosnian Crisis of 1908 A-H vs. Serbia 14. Second Moroccan Crisis (1911) Fr vs. Ger
Tensions & Conflicts: 1873-1914 15.The First Balkan War (1912) Montenegro declares war on Turkey (Ottoman Empire), Albania declares independence, Serbia, Montenegro, Greece attack Albania. At peace conference, Albania was given independence, Serbia, Montenegro, Greece were given land that Bulgaria took during the war. 16.The Second Balkan War (1913) Bulgaria attempts to take land back Defeated by Serbia, Greece, and Romania
V. The Assassination: V. The Assassination: Sarajevo, June 28, 1914 Assassination of Archduke Franz Ferdinand, the heir to the Austrian throne in Sarajevo, and his wife Sophie. He was shot by a Serb nationalist, Gavrilo Princip.
Austria-Hungary, unsatisfied with Serbia's response to her ultimatum declared war on Serbia on 28 July 1914. Russia, bound by treaty to Serbia, announced mobilization of its vast army in her defense, a slow process that would take around six weeks to complete. Germany, allied to Austria-Hungary by treaty, viewed the Russian mobilization as an act of war against Austria-Hungary, and after scant warning declared war on Russia on 1 August.
France, bound by treaty to Russia, found itself at war against Germany and, by extension, on Austria- Hungary following a German declaration on August 3. Germany was swift in invading neutral Belgium so as to reach Paris by the shortest possible route. Britain, allied to France by a more loosely worded treaty which placed a "moral obligation" upon her to defend France, declared war against Germany on August 4. Her reason for entering the conflict lay in another direction: she was obligated to defend neutral Belgium by the terms of a 75 year old treaty. With Germany's invasion of Belgium on August 4, and the Belgian King's appeal to Britain for assistance, Britain committed herself to Belgium’s defense later that day. Like France, she was by extension also at war with Austria-Hungary.
With Britain's entry into the war, her colonies and dominions abroad variously offered military and financial assistance, and included Australia, Canada, India, New Zealand and the Union of South Africa. Japan, honouring a military agreement with Britain, declared war on Germany on August 23, 1914. Two days later Austria-Hungary responded by declaring war on Japan. Italy, although allied to both Germany and Austria- Hungary, was able to avoid entering the war by citing a clause enabling it to evade its obligations to both. In short, Italy was committed to defend Germany and Austria-Hungary only in the event of a 'defensive' war; arguing that their actions were 'offensive' she declared instead a policy of neutrality. The following year, in May 1915, Italy finally joined the war by siding with the Allies against her two former allies.