Fundamental and Immediate Causes of WWI

Socials 11
Today we will be looking closely at the causes
of World War One.
▪ Political cartoon due at start of class this Friday (it is
unlikely you will have time to work on it in class today)
▪ Re-Test for Gov is at the start of tutorial today.
▪ Check my mark is updated and available for you to view
Fundamental cause:
 Underlying larger issues that cause an event to
occur (the big problems)
Immediate cause:
 The spark that starts the event
 The event starts immediately after the spark
 The policy of making a country’s armed forces strong
 Britain = world’s largest navy
▪ Two Power Standard
 Germany begins to increase their navy -> arms race
▪ Competition between Britain & Germany for strongest
 Arms race = increased tensions & possibility of war
 Close associations of countries to achieve a
common goal -> “I help you, you help me”
▪ Usually military protection (security)
 Triple Alliance (a.k.a. the Central Powers)
▪ Germany, Austria-Hungary, Italy
 Triple Entente (a.k.a. the Allies)
▪ France, Russia, Britain
 One country extending authority over another
country/ territory
▪ i.e. Empires with colonies
 Resulted from industrialization -> need for raw
 European Empires -> conflict over competing areas
▪ Britain & France vs. Germany -> fear of German expansion
▪ Austria-Hungary vs. Russia -> fighting over Balkans
 Strong feelings of pride based on common bonds of
language/ ethnicity/ religion
▪ Whole country or group within a country
 Many ethnic groups within Austria-Hungary
 A-H takes over Bosnia -> Serbs in Bosnia unhappy ->
Black Hand (terrorist group) forms w/ goal of
creating a “Greater Serbia”
June 28, 1914 – Archduke Franz Ferdinand of
Austria-Hungary assassinated by a member of
the Black Hand
Countdown to war:
 A-H and Germany discuss how to deal with crisis
▪ Germany gives A-H “Blank Cheque” -> we will support you
 A-H sends Serbia an ultimatum -> hand over
terrorists or go to war
 Serbia agrees but needs clarification on ultimatum
 A-H thinks this is a rejection and invades Serbia
 July 28, 1914 – A-H declares war on Serbia
 Russia mobilizes
▪ Thinks Germany is trying to occupy the Balkans
 Germany declares war on Russia
▪ Supporting A-H
 France mobilizes
▪ Supporting Russia
 Germany declares war on France
▪ Threatened by France supporting Russia