Throughout history there have been many important events that were both avoidable and unavoidable. World War I was one such event that could have been avoided because the causes of

Throughout history there have been many important events that were both avoidable and unavoidable.  World War I was one such event that could have been avoided because the causes of the war, which were themselves avoidable, were the result of an unnecessary assassination.  The main factors that led to the beginning of World War I were the idea of imperialism and the existence of European alliances.  Once these factors were in play in European politics, they became somewhat of a time bomb that was to be set of with the assassination of Archduke Franz Ferdinand of Austria. Within many countries, such as Great Britain, Germany, and France, there was a sense of nationalism that was very high.  This nationalism led to these countries wanting to make themselves more glorious.  They felt that the best way to do so was by being imperialistic.  As Dr. Bloy says, “Weltpolitik or the desire for world power status was very popular in Germany” (Bloy, “Causes of the First World War”).  Germany wanted to gain as much power as they could by attacking other countries and as a result, had no problems with going to war.  While nationalism is a positive characteristic to embody, all of these great powers took their ideas about nationalism to extreme levels to the point that they went to war.  This could very easily have been avoided if only these nationalistic ideas were a bit more tamed. Aside from imperialism, another contributing factor to World War I was the existence of military alliances.  Back then, all of the strongest competing European powers were in military alliances with each other.  Therefore, when one country got attacked due to imperialistic desires, that attacked country’s allies were forced to retaliate against the attacking country and its allies.  At the outbreak of World War I, there were two major alliances: “ composed of Germany, Austria-Hungary, and Italy, stood opposed to the composed of Britain, France, and Russia” (Anonymous, “Major Causes of World War I”).  These two alliances, which included the most powerful nations in Europe, were forced to attack each other when their intense nationalistic beliefs got in the way of peace and prosperity, which is what the alliances were set up to promote.  Looking back, if these alliances did not exist, World War I would not have happened because nobody would have wanted to get involved in a war with other incredibly powerful countries. Finally, the assassination of Archduke Franz Ferdinand was the one single event that tied all of these factors together that directly led to World War I.  When Archduke Franz Ferdinand of Austria was assassinated by a Serbian nationalist, Austria took the opportunity to attack Serbia.  The assassination of Archduke Franz Ferdinand was a clear attack on Austria that came about due to imperialistic desires that stemmed from Serbian nationalism.  Once the assassination was made, the many alliances in Europe attacked each other and created World War I.  This whole sequence of events could have been easily avoided if Archduke Franz Ferdinand had not been assassinated.  In addition, the alliances would not have been considered bad in hindsight and the fact that countries were imperialistic would not have been negative either had World War I not occurred. Works Cited: Bloy, Marjorie.  “Causes of the First World War”. Anonymous.  “Major Causes of World War I”.  file:///Users/samforman/Downloads/major_causes_of_wwi-0.pdf Purchase the answer to view it

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