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Great War

.. bia. The front remained inactive until October 1915 After Bulgaria declared war on Serbia on October 14, 1915, the Allied troops advanced into Serbia. The Bulgarian troops defeated Serbian forces in Serbia and also the British and French troops. Also in anticipation of the Bulgarian declaration of war on October 6 a strong Austro-German drive was launched from Austria-Hungary into Serbia.

By the end of 1915 the Central Powers had conquered all of Serbia and eliminated the Serbian army. The British and French troops in Serbia retreated fortified and where they were held in waited for later action. The eastern front the plans of the Russians assumed the offensive at the very beginning of the war. In August 1914 two Russian armies advanced into East Prussia and four Russian armies invaded the Austrian. In East Prussia a series of Russian victories against inferior German forces had made the evacuation of that region by the Germans imminent. In April a combined German and Austrian army drove the Russians back.

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In May the Austro-German armies began a great offensive in central Poland and by September 1915 had driven the Russians out of Poland and had also taken possession of all the frontier fortresses of Russia. Although the Central Powers did not force a decision on the eastern front in 1914 through 15 the Russians lost so many men and such large quantities of supplies that they were subsequently unable to play any decisive role in the war. Turkish warships cooperated with German warships in a naval bombardment of Russian Black Sea ports Russia formally declared war on Turkey on November 2 and Great Britain and France followed suit on November 5. In December the Turks began an invasion of the Russian Caucasus region. The invasion was successful at its inception, but by August 1915 the hold that Turkish forces had gained had been considerably reduced. Turkish pressure in the area however the Russian government demanded a diversionary attack by Great Britain on Turkey.

British naval forces bombarded the Turkish forts at the on February 1915.In the Mesopotamian Valley British forces from India defeated the Turks in several battles during 1914 & 1915. The chief military events on the Austro-Italian Front in 1915 were four indecisive battles between Austro-Hungarian and Italian armies on the Isonzo River. The purpose of the Italian attack was to break through the Austrian lines. On the Italian front 1916 was marked by another inconclusive battle on the Isonzo River the fifth of a series in that region and by an Austrian offensive in the Trentino designed to break through the Italian lines and reach the rear of the Italian position. The Austrians gained considerable territory but could not breakthrough and an Italian counteroffensive succeeded in regaining most of the captured terrain.

Into Balkans during 1916 the Allied powers interfered in Greek affairs on the grounds that the Greek government under King Constantine I was, in spite of its declared neutrality, unduly favoring the Central Powers. Theastern front the dominating influence on the fighting during 1917 was the outbreak in March of the Russian popular uprising against the imperial government resulted in turn in the establishment of a provisional government and the abdication in March of Czar Nicholas. At this time the U.S. decides to enter the war. The early part of 1918 did not look good Allied nations.

On March 3 Russia signed the Treaty of Brest-Litovsk which put a formal end to the war. On the Balkan front result of the fighting of 1918 was disastrous to the Central Powers. The Allied offensive was so successful that by the end of the month the Bulgarians were thoroughly beaten and concluded a war with the Allies. The German success in Romania was nullified in November when with the support of Allied troops who had advanced into Romania after the Bulgarian surrender, Romania reentered the war on the Allied side. The war was nearing an end all that was left were the Germans the others were all withdrawing. Despite the German victories over Russia and Romania at the outset of 1918 the Allies principally through their spokesperson Woodrow Wilson formulated war aims drastically opposed to those already stated by the Central Powers.

At the beginning of 1918 the Germans, realizing that victory by means of submarine warfare was impossible and that they must force a decision on the western front before American troops might take up positions there in force planned fothe spring of the year an all-out effort to break through the Allied lines and reach Paris. The Germans just were out of time. Supplies, and men. They could not successfully finish the drive. The effects of the war were from the fall out of Russia an internal revolution began with Czar Nicholas’s abdication. The breakup of the central powers spawned many new central European countries causing set backs in many of the new countries economic gains.

The greatest loss was that of a whole generation of men all the best and brightest were wiped out from all over Europe.The peace treaties that emerged from the conferences at Versailles, Saint-Germain, Trianon, Neuilly, and Svres were on the whole inadequately enforced by the victorious powers leading to the resurgence of militarism and aggressive nationalism in Germany and to social disorder throughout much of Europe. Italian resentment also followed form the treaties they proclaimed land was not adequately divided. The mandate system was formulated as a compromise between the desire of the victorious Allied powers to retain control of conquered areas and their wartime declarations opposing territorial annexation. The territories were placed nominally under the supervision of the League of Nations, and the administration of the mandates was delegated to certain of the victorious powers until the areas could govern themselves. The mandates were divided into three classes according to the presumed development of their populations in the direction of fitness for self-government.

U.S. policy of isolationism also occurred. The disillusionment of the people led them to join opposing forces. Probably the worst effect of the Great War was the rise of Fascism in an already decaying Germany, which led to the breakthrough of the Nazi party. In conclusion World War I began on July 28, 1914, with the declaration of war by Austria-Hungary on Serbia and hostilities between the Allied and Central Powers continued until the signing of the armistice on November 11, 1918 a period of 4 years.

Casualties in the land forces amounted to more than 37 million in addition close to 10 million deaths among the civilian populations were caused indirectly by the war. Despite worldwide hopes that the settlements arrived at after the war would restore world peace on a permanent basis. World War I actually provided the basis for an even more devastating conflict. The defeated Central Powers declared their acceptance of President Wilson’s 14 points as the basis for the armistice and expected the Allies to utilize the principles of the 14 points as the foundation for the peace treaties. Allies came to the conference at Versailles and to the subsequent peace conferences with the determination to exact from the Central Powers the entire cost of the war and to distribute among themselves territories and possessions of the defeated nations.

. History Reports.


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