Essay Example on What SHOULD have been learned from World War I

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 What do you think were the two most important lessons that were learned or maybe that SHOULD have been learned from World War I Why One lesson I think that we should learn from WWI is that peacetime alliances can turn small scale conflicts into a multi national crisis While tensions throughout Europe were running high in the end it was Austria Hungary s declaration of war against Serbia that officially started the violence After the assassination of Franz Ferdinand Austria Hungary was ready to go to war with Serbia knowing with the security of knowing they had Germany s support due to the Triple Alliance However after Austria Hungary declared war on Serbia Russia came to Serbia s aid propelling a war between Germany and Austria Hungary against Russia Russia was not alone in this conflict due to the pre war agreements of the Triple Entente and so France and Britain became involved in the fighting Due to these peacetime agreements and treaties what should have been a short lived conflict between Serbia and Austria Hungary blossomed into total war The second important lesson that should have been learned from WWI is countries only go to war to benefit themselves and alliances can breed hatred as well as unity While the escalation of WWI was built on the relationships created by treaties and alliances the countries only got involved after seeing how it would benefit them 



By viewing war as an opportunity for national interest the fights become personal and resentment builds Even though Britain was a member of the Triple Entente and a close ally of France they did not enter the conflict until Germany sent troops to Belgium and became a more direct threat to Britain itself Upon entering the war it was made clear that Britain wanted to claim Germany s colonial territory in the Middle East and Africa After the war began to spread Italy ignored its obligations as a member of the Triple Alliance after declaring that Germany and Austria Hungary were the aggressors in this conflict When Italy did enter the war it was on the side of the Allies because they were promised compensation some of which would come from the expense of Austria Hungary who they were previously allied with As France fought Germany on one front they desired to reclaim Alsace Lorraine an area of France that Germany had taken prior to the war and later desired to claim Saar When the war ends reparations are demanded and these ulterior motives are made clear resentment builds and plants the seed for future conflicts 2 Discuss the failure of the Peace of Paris How did the Treaty of Versailles set the stage for another war From its beginning the Peace of Paris was destined to be a failure when they refused to invite Germany and Russia to the meetings Both nations played a huge part in the war and this meeting was called to discuss what reparations Germany needed to make to the Allies Another problem from the beginning was that the only people who made major decisions were the leaders of the Great Powers meaning that there was extreme and unfair bias on new policies and demands America was gaining money and power by buying into markets that the Europeans could no longer afford so with this mindset President Wilson said that the penalties against Germany should be lenient and manageable

On the other end of the spectrum Premier Clemenceau of France had outrageous and impossible demands for Germany similar to those that the Germans had put upon the French in the past These demands were laid out in the Treaty of Versailles The Treaty of Versailles was simply unfair to Germany and demanded more than Germany could provide When the final bill of 33 billion in gold was announced the people were angry It was clear from the very beginning that this demand was far out of reach for Germany and it was predicted that this treaty would destroy the post war economy Yet to justify their demands the Allies created a war guilt clause to blame Germany and the other Central Powers for the damages of the war This accusation of guilt only served to worsen the relationship between Germany and the Allies but Germany accepted the Treaty of Versailles because there was no other choice In addition to the cash demand ruining the German economy France went as far as to lay claim to and extract coal from German coal mines as a source of restitution Another part of the Treaty of Versailles was that Germany's armed forces were extremely limited and supervised This lead to Germany securing a new alliance with Russia who was also exiled by the Allies This new alliance led to Russia allowing Germany to build weapons and aircrafts on Russian soil so as to not violate the Treaty and in return Germany trained Russian soldiers The Treaty of Versailles really served only to ostracize Germany and foster resentment between the nations leading to the conflicts that started World War II


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