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Causes of World War I

Grade 5
Social Studies Online
Blueprint Skill
 Explain the causes of the World War I.
 15th Infantry Regiment New York National Guard
 Here are African American soldiers from the 15th Infantry
 Regiment of the New York National Guard in France during
 World War I.
World War I (1914–1918)
   Imperial, territorial, and economic
   rivalries led to the “Great War” between
   the Central Powers (Austria-Hungary,
   Germany, Bulgaria, and Turkey) and the
   Allies (U.S., Britain, France, Russia,
   Belgium, Serbia, Greece, Romania,
   Montenegro, Portugal, Italy, and
   Japan). About 10 million combatants
   killed, 20 million wounded.
The war Begins
   Austrian Archduke Francis Ferdinand and wife
   assassinated in Sarajevo by Serbian nationalist,
   Gavrilo Princip (June 28). Austria declares war
   on Serbia (July 28). Germany declares war on
   Russia (Aug. 1), on France (Aug. 3), invades
   Belgium (Aug. 4). Britain declares war on
   Germany (Aug. 4). Germans defeat Russians in
   Battle of Tannenberg on Eastern Front (Aug.).
   First Battle of the Marne (Sept.). German drive
   stopped 25 miles from Paris. By end of year,
   war on the Western Front is “positional” in the
  German submarine blockade of Great Britain
  begins (Feb.). Dardanelles Campaign—British
  land in Turkey (April), withdraw from Gallipoli
  (Dec.–Jan. 1916). Germans use gas at second
  Battle of Ypres (April–May). Lusitania sunk by
  German submarine—1,198 lost, including 128
  Americans (May 7). On Eastern Front, German
  and Austrian “great offensive” conquers all of
  Poland and Lithuania; Russians lose 1 million
  men (by Sept. 6). “Great Fall Offensive” by
  Allies results in little change from 1914 (Sept.–
  Oct.). Britain and France declare war on
  Bulgaria (Oct. 14).
May 17, 1915
   May 7, 1915 brought the United States into World
   War I. A German submarine sank the British ocean
   liner Lusitania off the coast of Ireland. More than
   1,000 passengers were killed, including 128
   Americans. The people of the United States were
   shocked! Wilson did not declare war, but instead
   asked Germany for an apology, for damages to be
   paid, and for a promise not to attack any more
   passenger ships. Italy then entered the war for the
   Allies and attacked Austria-Hungary from the south.
Sinking the Lusitania: 1915
   In February, 1915, the German government
   announced an unrestricted warfare campaign.
   This meant that any ship taking goods to
   Allied countries was in danger of being
   attacked. This broke international agreements
   that stated commanders who suspected that
   a non-military vessel was carrying war
   materials, had to stop and search it, rather
   than do anything that would endanger the
   lives of the occupants.
Sinking the Lusitania: 1915 cont.
   The Lusitania, was at 32,000 tons, the
   largest passenger vessel on
   transatlantic service, left New York
   harbour for Liverpool on 1st May, 1915.
   It was 750ft long, weighed 32,500 tons
   and was capable of 26 knots. On this
   journey the ship carried 1,257
   passengers and 650 crew.
Sinking the Lusitania: 1915 cont.
   At 1.20pm on 7th May 1915, the U-20, only ten miles
   from the coast of Ireland, surfaced to recharge her
   batteries. Soon afterwards Captain Schwieger, the
   commander of the German U-Boat, observed the
   Lusitania in the distance. Schwieger gave the order
   to advance on the liner. The U20 had been at sea for
   seven days and had already sunk two liners and only
   had two torpedoes left. He fired the first one from a
   distance of 700 metres. Watching through his
   periscope it soon became clear that the Lusitania was
   going down and so he decided against using his
   second torpedo.
Sinking the Lusitania: 1915 cont.
   After a second,
   larger explosion, the
   Lusitania rolled over
   and sank in eighteen
   minutes. A total of
   1,198 people died
   (785 passengers and
   413 crew). Those
   killed included 128
   US citizens.
"The World In Shambles"
   "It is a fearful thing to lead this great
   peaceful people into war.... but the right is
   more precious than peace, and we shall fight
   for the things which we have always carried
   nearest our hearts."

   Woodrow Wilson
Important Strategies of World War I
   Two powerful groups called alliances
   were created. The Central Powers were
   led by Germany, Austria-Hungary, and
   Turkey. Many Americans who had come
   from Germany favored the Central
   Powers. The Allied Powers were led by
   Great Britain, France and Russia. Those
   who had come from Great Britain
   rooted for the Allies.

   Neutrality was the stance taken by the
   majority of Americans towards the war.
   They felt that Europe was too far away
   and that its conflicts were not
   trustworthy. President Wilson also
   believed that all Americans needed to
   "act and speak in a spirit of neutrality."
Trench Warfare
 The two armies dug trenches to protect
 themselves from bullets and bombs. Then they
 put up mazes of barbed wire around the
 trenches. The area between the trenches was
 called "no man's land." Soldiers ate and slept in
 the trenches. First one side, and then the other
 would try to break through at some point along
 the line. It was very difficult for either side to win
 a battle this way, and trench warfare claimed
 many lives.
The Big Four Leaders of World War I
    The Big Four
   Leaders gathered at
   Versailles in
   January 1919 to
   write a formal treaty
   for peace.
Woodrow Wilson
  Woodrow Wilson, the President of the
  United States at the time of war,
  represented the United States in
  Versailles himself. He had a difficult
  time convincing the other three leaders
  to accept his idea of peace without
  victory. Wilson was forced to agree that
  Germany had caused the war.
David Lloyd George
   David Lloyd George was the British
   Prime Minister who represented the
   United Kingdom. During their talks,
   George put the needs of his own nation
   Vittorio Orlando, the Italian Prime
   Minister, also put the needs of his
   nation first during talks.
Georges Clemenceau
  Clemenceau, the
  French Premier,
  wanted to make
  Germany pay for the
  entire cost of the
  war since most of
  the fighting took
  place on French soil.
Peace Treaty Signed at Versailles,
   The Parisians had a
   parade after the
   signing of the Treaty
   at Versailles marking
   the end of World
   War I. Notice the
   sign at the top of
   this photograph that
   reads: "Vive
 The First World War Chronology
 Picture History
 The History of American Wars

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