World War 1

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Russia pulled out of World War I because the communists wanted to focus on internal rather than external problems after they seized power in the February Revolution of 1917. Growing battlefield losses and defeats had exacerbated the discontent of the Russian populace that led to the revolution, and the Bolsheviks wanted to consolidate their power rather than continue to oppose the Central Powers with their weakened military.

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  • How Did World War I Lead to World War II?

    Q: How Did World War I Lead to World War II?

    A: The terms on which World War I ended set the stage for World War II, which began just 20 years later, by negatively impacting the belligerent countries politically, economically and socially. The Treaty of Versailles, which formally ended World War I in 1919, was an instrument of vengeance against the Central Powers, and dissatisfaction over its terms left the defeated nations vulnerable to extremist movements promising revenge.
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  • What Was the Arms Race During WW1?

    Q: What Was the Arms Race During WW1?

    A: Before World War I, many European nations grew their military powers and produced new military technology dramatically as a result of direct competition over potential colonies. Countries such as Germany and Britain engaged in a race to produce the most powerful armies through invention and mass production of weapons. This arms race is often cited as a leading cause for World War I.
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  • Who Won World War I?

    Q: Who Won World War I?

    A: The Allies won World War I. The primary members of the Allies were the British Empire, France, Italy (after 1915) and the Russian Empire, although Russia pulled out before the end of the war. Japan, Greece, Belgium, Serbia, Montenegro, Romania and several other nations contributed to the Allied cause. The United States fought alongside Allied troops but never formally entered the alliance.
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  • What Is the Definition of the Alliance System?

    Q: What Is the Definition of the Alliance System?

    A: The definition of an alliance system is a formal agreement or treaty between two or more nations to cooperate for specific purposes. An alliance system can also be defined as an agreement between individuals, families or corporations. However, the term alliance system is most often used in reference to a historical event when an agreement was reached to prevent the outbreak of war or to define territorial borders.
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  • Why Did Great Britain Get Involved in World War I?

    Q: Why Did Great Britain Get Involved in World War I?

    A: When Britain entered World War I, it was primarily in reaction to Germany invading Belgium. Britain promised to defend Belgium in perpetuity under the Treaty of London, which it entered into in 1839. A secondary reason the country joined the war was too ensure that no European country became significantly larger or more powerful than the others.
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  • Why Did the United States Reject the Treaty of Versailles?

    Q: Why Did the United States Reject the Treaty of Versailles?

    A: The United States rejected the Treaty of Versailles due to the opposition of a group of senators called the Irreconcilables, who believed that under the terms of the treaty, the United States would lose too much of its autonomy to the League of Nations. All of the Irreconcilables were enemies of President Woodrow Wilson, who originally advocated for the League of Nations and helped compose the details of the treaty.
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  • How Was Poison Gas Used in World War I?

    Q: How Was Poison Gas Used in World War I?

    A: During WWI, poison gas was used as a type of chemical warfare to attack large armies. The gas was delivered either by using the wind to carry the poisonous gas to the enemy's front line or by placing the gas into artillery and aerial bombs and firing them at the enemy's front lines.
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  • How Many People Died in World War I?

    Q: How Many People Died in World War I?

    A: Although there is some debate about the true number of World War I casualties, the U.S. Department of Justice estimates that a total of 5,142,631 souls perished during the war. Russia lost the highest number of people, with 1.7 million people or 76.3 percent of its armed forces killed, while 116,516 American lives were lost.
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  • What Caused the U.S. Entry Into WWI?

    Q: What Caused the U.S. Entry Into WWI?

    A: On April 6, 1917, the United States officially declared war against Germany after the country repeatedly attacked armed and unarmed vessels traveling to Britain, resulting in American casualties. In 1915, Germany had enacted a policy of unrestricted submarine warfare against any ships that entered the British war zone. President Woodrow Wilson maintained neutrality until Germany ignored an agreement to ensure passenger safety before destroying enemy ships.
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  • Why Were the Balkans Considered a Powder Keg?

    Q: Why Were the Balkans Considered a Powder Keg?

    A: The Western Balkans were a source of ethnic tensions primarily due to the fact that Yugoslavia was formed as a federation of distinct ethnic groups. Once the Soviet central leadership failed in Yugoslavia, many of the individual groups within the country saw no reason to remain federated.
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  • Did the United States Want to Remain Neutral in WWI?

    Q: Did the United States Want to Remain Neutral in WWI?

    A: The United States wanted to remain neutral during WWI because it was not a signatory to the international agreements that had drawn other nations into the conflict. Disagreements occurred over who started the war.
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  • Who Were the Allied Powers in World War I?

    Q: Who Were the Allied Powers in World War I?

    A: The Allied powers in World War I included Great Britain, France, the United States and Italy. The Allies included 25 nations in all.
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  • What Was the Convoy System in World War I?

    Q: What Was the Convoy System in World War I?

    A: The convoy system in World War I involved organizing ships into large groups under the protection of armed naval vessels to provide better defense and countermeasures against German U-boat attacks. The ships protected were usually civilian merchant vessels, military supply ships and troop transports. Warships, such as destroyers, cruisers and torpedo boats, were used for convoy protection. They also sometimes deployed aerial reconnaissance to spot potential underwater U-boat movement.
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  • Why Was WWI Called the "war to End All Wars"?

    Q: Why Was WWI Called the "war to End All Wars"?

    A: After it was over, World War I was called "the war to end all wars" because it was so destructive that the nations of the world wanted to prevent such slaughter from ever happening again. This prompted prolonged negotiations over proposed solutions like the League of Nations. Unfortunately, rather than end war, the harsh terms of the Treaty of Versailles in 1919 set the stage for World War II.
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  • How Did the Treaty of Versailles Change the World Map?

    Q: How Did the Treaty of Versailles Change the World Map?

    A: The Treaty of Versailles radically reorganized the map of Europe, to the detriment of the German Empire, and restructured many of Germany's former overseas colonies. In every case, Central Power nations lost territory, and Allied nations gained territory, although some colonies were transferred to international control, and a number of European countries became independent.
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  • How Was World War I Different From Previous Wars?

    Q: How Was World War I Different From Previous Wars?

    A: World War I was unlike any previous war for its reliance on advanced industrial technology and the elaborate economic and political organization of belligerent nations. World War I saw the first widespread use of machine guns, air power, submarine operations, poison gas and armored vehicles. The war was also characterized by an almost unprecedented mobilization of civilian resources to escalate the pace of combat.
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  • Q: How Did World War I Begin?

    A: World War I was fomenting due to a tangled web of alliances between the various European powers, but the catalyst for the war was the assassination of the Archduke of Austria, Franz Ferdinand. The assassination occurred on June 28, 1914, at the hands of Serbian nationalist Gavrilo Princip of the Black Hand. His subjects did not view the archduke favorably, but it served as an excuse for Austria to start a war with Serbia.
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  • Q: How Did Otto Von Bismarck Unify Germany?

    A: Bismarck unified Germany by manipulating leaders of multiple countries, which caused wars and gave the German people a common enemy and reason to unite under King William I. Bismarck even went so far as to manipulate messages from King William to the leaders in France and vice versa to ensure both parties felt wronged and insulted, leading to the Franco-Prussian war.
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  • Q: What Was David Lloyd George's Involvement in World War I?

    A: At the outset of the war, David Lloyd George's involvement was to speak against Great Britain being involved in any altercations that arose from the troubles in Europe, but with the invasion of Belgium the country had no choice and George became a voice for victory of the Allies. The formation of the government in Britain changed and when it did, George became the Master of Munitions and Minister of War in 1916.
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  • Q: What Did Austria-Hungary Do in WWI?

    A: Austria-Hungary's declaration of war on Serbia after the Archduke Franz Ferdinand was assassinated precipitated World War I. Because of a tangle of alliances and treaties, other European powers declared war in a chain reaction, plunging the entire continent into war within a week.
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  • Q: Who Started World War I?

    A: The path to World War I began when Gavrilo Princip, a Serbian nationalist, killed Archduke Franz Ferdinand in June 1914. The archduke was the heir to the Austro-Hungarian Empire. The war began a month later when Austria-Hungary declared war on Serbia.
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