World War I was a very complicated war. It goes back as far back as 1870. Of course the was didnt last for that many years, but it had many casues. Not just one spark that started it off. The Franco-Prussian War was one of these casues. There were sevral Franco-Prussian Wars. The last Franco-Prussian War started in 1870. Prussia was in a confederation. A confederation is a group of states that are loosly joined together and have more power than the government of the whole country. Prussia was the biggest state. France and Prussia always fought over Alsace-Lorraince. It was land with very rich soil. It was on the border between France and Prussia. They kept fighting over the land. One time Prussia would win and would take the land. The the next time France would win and would take the land. This kept happening, but in the last war, which started in 1870, Germany finally won Alsace-Lorraine. They signed a treaty in Versailles, France. The Franco-Prussian War ended in 1871. After the Franco-Prussian War, Bismarck, who was Prussias leader made the unification of Germany. That meant that all the separate states joined together to be one counrty. After this, Bismarck became the leader of Germany.
After the Franco-Prussian War, France was afraid that Germany would attack France for more land. So then France started building up its army so that Germany wouldnt attack. Germany wanted a war. This caused the six stronge countires in Europe to start building up their armies and get ready for the war. The six stronge countries were England, France, Germany, Austria-Hungary, Russia, and Turkey. All of these countires were compeating to be the strongest. Russia and Germany did not get along. Russia, too, was afriad Germnay would attack, so Russia started to build up its army to make Germany afriad. Russia and Austria-Hungary also didnt get along. Austria-Hungary was afriad Russia would attack so they started to build up their army to intimidate Russia. Turkey didnt get along with Austria-Hungary. Turkey saw that Austria-Hungary was building up their army, and that frightened Turkey, so they started building up their armies to scare Austria-Hungary. All of thse countries were compeating to be the best and the strongest. This is an example of militerism and nationalism. Nationalism is a deep feeling of pride for ones country with a desire to prove that its better than all other countires. Nationalism could get very dangerous becasue it could start a war. It was one of the factors that started World War I. What all the countries were doing was also an example of militerism. Militerism is the way countries build up their armies to build up for war.Before the war, all young males had to train to be soldiers in school. This was called universal military training.
Another one of the casues of World War I is alliances. An Alliance is and agreemnt of friendship with two or more countries. The countries all started to make allinaces becasue they needed help incase of a war. So if country A got into a war with country B, and country A had an alliance with country C, country C would help country A fight against country B. Then maybe country B would have an allince with country D, and country D would ahve an allince with country E. So countries B,D and E could fight against countires A and C. So what would be a little war between countries A and B would turn into a very big war.
In 1872, Germnay Russia and Austria-Hungary made the first Triple Alliance. Russia left after the Franco-Prussian War. Instead of Russia, Italy came, and in 1882, it became known as the Second Triple Alliance. After Russia backed out of the first alliance, it became friends with France. In 1891, France and Russia made the Dual Alliance. In 1904 England jioned the Dual Alliance, and then it became the Triple Entant.
If a big country makes and alliance with a small country, it doesnt mean that theyre trying to be nice. Its because they want something. All the big countries in Europe wanted something in the Balkans. Russia wanted land for sea ports. They couldnt use thiers by the Black Sea becasue they hads to pass through aturkey and they were enemies with Turkey. They also couldnt use the one by the Pacific Ocean becsue it always froze. Germany wanted a railroad that went from Beryn to Baghdad. The railroad would go threw Austria-Hungary. Thats why Germany made an alliance with austria-Hungary and Germany. It also had to go threw Turkey so Germany made an alliance with them in 1914. Austria-Hungary wanted sea ports as well. Italy wanted natrual resorces. The people in the Balkans though, wanted all the big countries out and they wanted to become part of Serbia.
All of this was somewhat and example of Imperialism. Imperialism is a forigen policy where a country tries to benifit its self at the expense of other countries. All the big countries were jus using the Balkans for what they wanted. Another way that the alliances are a form of Imperialism is that maybe country D has nothing has nothing against country A, but theyre still fighting. Also, country D has to waste their soldiers becasue they had an alliance with country D had alliance with country B.
In order to have Imperialism you need to ahve a stronge army and navy. England had the strongest navy so they had the biggest empire. Austria-Hungary and Turkey also had big empires. Germany and France were just starting. The only place left to get colonies was Africa, but it wasnt big enough. All the countries compeated for colonies. This built bad realationships between some countries. becasue they were all compesting and nto all the countries actually got colonies.
It was only a matter of time before the war started. All of these elemnt together casued World War I. Not only one factor casued it. Now only one small thing would casue the war. These are short range casues. Such as the Balkan Wars and the assassination of Archduke Ferdinand. These were the short range casues. Archduke Ferdinand got assassinated on June 28, 1914. Austria-Hungary sent Serbia and ultimatum and said that they had to admit to the killing of Archduke Ferdinand and to stop trying to get Bosnia away from Austria-Hungary. Leaders from other countries also tried to convince other leaders to stop the war, but Serbia refused. Austria-Hungary gave Serbia one month to fofill the ultimatum. On July 28. 1914, World War I began.
Therefore, many asspects caused World War I. Some of which are the Franco-Prussian War, nationalism, militerism, imperialism and alliances.