World War 1

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The Balkans power keg

1808

Many Serbs were furious when in 1808,Austria annexed two Turkish Balkan provinces, Bosnia and Herzegovina, where Serbs made up much of the population

The Balkans power keg

1820

Nationalism was an especially strong force in Europe's Balkan peninsula, where several national groups had won their independence from the Turkish Ottoman Empire since the 1820s

Germany's Alliances

1870

From the early 1870's Germany sought an alliance with Austria-Hungary and Russia

Germany's Alliance

1879

In 1879 Germany created a dual alliance, under which German and Austria-Hungary agreed that each would help the other if either was attacked by Russia

Germany's alliance

1882

The dual alliance became a Triple Alliance when Italy joined in 1882

France finds allies

1888

From 1888 Germany's foreign policy found a new direction

France finds allies

1890

When Germany failed to renew a treaty with Russia in 1890, France found an ally in Russia

France finds allies

1894

In the 1894 Franco-Russian alliance each agreed to help each other if attacked my Germany

France finds allies

1904

Alarmed by Germany's move, Britain signed the Entente Cordiale with France in 1904

The western front

1905

Count Alfred von Schlieffen has developed Germany's basic plan in 1905

France finds allies

1907

When Britain and Russia settled their differences in 1907, Britain, France and Russia linked up in the triple Entente

The Balkans power keg

1914

By 1914 Serbia saw Austria as the main obstacle to its expansion

War in the colonies

1914

In 1914 South Africa took German South West Africa, Australia took German New Guinea, and Japan seized Germany's Pacific islands colonies and territory in China

The war at sea

1914

In 1914 the German fleet was trapped in its ports, so the British navy's main role was to maintaining a blockade to prevent Germany from importing war materials

Countdown to war

06/28/1914

On 28 June 1914, during an official visit to the Bosnian town of Sarajevo, the heir to the Austrian throne, Archduke Franz Ferdinand and his wife, the Duchess Sophie, were fatally shot

Countdown to war

07/23/1914

Germany gave Austria a guarantee of military support and, on 23 July, Austria presented Serbia with ultimatum

War begins

07/28/1914

Serbia accepted many of the demands and offered to discuss others, but Austria proceeded to declare war on 28 July

War begins

07/30/1914

Russia began to mobilize its forces to support Serbia on 30 July , so Germany declared war on Russia on 1 August

The western front

August 1914

Attacking France through neutral Belgium in August 1914 avoided the much slower task of a direct invasion across the heavily fortified French-German border

War begins

08/03/1914

After France declared it would stand by its Russian ally, on 3 August Germany declared war on France

The western front

September 1914

Belgian resistance delayed Germany's advance and helped French and British forces to halt the Germans in northern France in September 1914

Other European fronts

1915

After Russian forces captured America from Turkey in 1915, Turkish solders rounded up hundreds and thousands of Americans living within Turkish Territory

War in the colonies

1915

Turkey's middle eastern colonies became a theater of war from 1915, when Britain encouraged Arab leaders to revolt against the Turks with promises of independent kingdoms

Widening support of the allies

May 1915

In return for promises of territory, Italy withdrew from the Triple Alliance and joined the Allies in May 15

Other European fronts

1916

In 1916 Austrian and German troops over ran Romania soon after it joined the Allies

War in the colonies

1916

Germany, in turn, created colonial problems for Britain by shipping arms to Irish rebels, who staged an unsuccessful revolt against British rule in Ireland in 1916

Widening support of the allies

1917

The United States of America joined he Allies in 1917

The eastern front

1917

Despite some victories against Austro-Hungarian forces, Russia's military was collapsing by early 1917 and the revolution of November 1917 ended Russia's involvement in the war

The war at sea

January 1917

In January 1917 U-boats began to attack ships of neutral countries trading with the Allies

The war at sea

April 1917

The ship attacks led to the US joining the Allies in April 1917