Reference no: EM131243499 , Length:
Read the following paragraphs from the document.
1. Summarise concisely and accurately what the author is saying.
2. At the end of your summary, tell me how this article improved your understanding of the First World War.
You must use your own words - do not rely on quotations from the text.
- Princip proved an apt pupil. He did not flinch on June 28th 1914. Confusion in archdukes entourage after an initial bomb attack, the young Bosnian Serb discovered the official touring car stopped within 6 feet of his location. Princip fired two quick shots. Within the minutes the archduke and his wife Sophie were dead in Saravejo.
Exactly one month later, july 28th Austria-Hungary declared war on Serbia. What began as the third Balkan war would, within a week become the First World War.
- Europe's influential leaders confronted several issues
o 1: cantered on the perennial eastern question (European powers had helped themselves to lg portions of ottoman empire)
- Russia wanted a dominant voice in the name of Slavic brothergood
o 2: Habsburg monarchy was considered "sick". Whether Europe's third largest state w. 50m citizens could survive as a multinational, dynastic state in an age of increasing nationalism and democracy.
o Additional contextual issues that shaped the framework of international politics in the last years before 1914 such as alliance alignments, the arms arms, and imperialism's legacies ,etc
- After June 28th pasic, tried without much success to moderate the Serbian press's glee over the archduke death. He knew Hasburg authorities believed that Princip had ties to Belgraded. They only hoped that the Habsburg investigators could not make a direc, incontrovertible connection to Apis and others. (Deaths of franz Ferdinand and Sophie stunned the Hasburg leadership)
- However explained, the German leadership reached a rare degree of consensus: it would support Vienna in a showdown with Serbia. Thus the German Kaiser and chancellor gave formal assurances ("Blank cheque) to Vienna. From that moment, Austria-Hungary proceeded to exploit this decision and to march toward war with Serbia. Berlin would find itself - for better or worse - at the mercy of its reliable ally as the next stages of the crisis unfolded.
- News of the Habsburh ultimatum struck Europe with as much force as the Sarajevo murders. If the public did not immediately recognize the dangers to the peace, the European diplomats (and their military and naval associates) did. The most significant, immediate, and dangerous response came not from the Germans, but from the Russians. Upon learning of the ultimatum, Foreign Minister Sergei Sazonov declared war inevitable. His actions thereafter did much to ensure a general European war.
- The Russian general mobilization resolved a number of probs for the German high command. First, it meant that no negotiations, including the proposal for an Austrian "Half in Belgrade", would come to anything. Second, it allowed Berlin to declare a "defensive war" of protection against an aggressive Russia, a tactic that immeasurably aided Bethmann Hollweg's efforts to achieve domestic consensus. And third, it meant that the chancellor could no longer resist General Helmuth von Moltke's demands for German mobilization and the implementation of German war plans. Alone of the great powers, mobilization for Germany equalled war; Bethmann Hollweg realized this. Yet once the German mobilization began, the chancellor lost effective control of the situation.
- At 7pm on Saturday 1 august 1914, Germany declared war on Russia. The next day German forces invaded Luxembourg. Later that night Germany demanded that Belgium allow German troops to march through the neutral state on their war to France. The Belgian cabinet met and concluded that it would resist the German attack.
- With the declarations of war the focus shifted to the elaborate pre-arranged mobilizations of the great powers. For the naval forces the issues were relatively straightforward: prepare for the great naval battle, impose or thwart a policy of naval blockade, protect your coast lines, and keep the shipping lanes open. For the continental armies, the stakes were far greater. If an army were defeated, the war might well be over. Commited to offensive strategies, dependent on the hope that any war would be short, and reliant on the implementation of their carefully developed plans, the general staffs believed they had prepared for almost every possible contingency
- In july 1914 one or two key decisions taken differently might wel lhave seen the war averted. As it was, the July crisis became a model of escalation and inadvertent consequences. The expectation of a short war, the ideology of offensive warfare, and continuing faith in war as an instrument of policy: all would soon prove illusory and wishful. The cold, hard, unyielding reality of modern warfare soon replaced the romantic, dashing legends of the popular press. The elite decision-makers (monarchs, civilian ministers, admirals, and generals) had started the war; the larger public would die in it and, ultimately, finish it.