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World War I (WWI), also known as the First World War, was a global war centred in Europe and the Americas that began on 28 July 1914 and lasted until 11 November 1918. From the time of its occurrence until the approach of World War II in 1939, it was called simply the World War or the Great War, and thereafter the First World War or World War I. (In America it was initially called the European War.) More than 9 million combatants were killed: a scale of death impacted by industrial advancements, geographic stalemate and reliance on human wave attacks. It was one of the deadliest conflicts in world history, paving the way for major political changes, including revolutions in many of the nations involved.
The July crisis
In 1914 the nation of Austria-Hungary had established a new archduke known as Franz Ferdinand, who was in Turn assassinated by the Black Hand. A radical Serbian group which brought about massive diplomatic maneuvering between Europes great powers. Demands by Austria-Hungary to Serbia were made intentionally unacceptable and wished to end Serbian influence in Bosnia.
The Russian Empire, unwilling to allow Austria-Hungary to eliminate its influence in the Balkans, and in support of its longtime Serb protégé, ordered a partial mobilisation one day later. Germany mobilised on 30 July. Germany's war plan, the Schlieffen Plan, relied on a quick, massive invasion of France to eliminate the threat on the West, before turning east against Russia. Simultaneously with its mobilisation against Russia, therefore, the German government issued demands that France remain neutral. The French cabinet resisted military pressure to commence immediate mobilisation, and ordered its troops to withdraw 10 km (6 mi) from the border to avoid any incident. France only mobilised on the evening of 2 August, when Germany invaded Belgium and attacked French troops. Germany declared war on Russia on the same day. Britain declared war on Germany on 4 August 1914, following Germanies poor reply on Belgiums neutrality.
Progress of the War
With the War beginning in Earnest on multiple fronts the Central powers suffered gross miscommunication as the Germans and Austrians had planned for different things which led to the opening of a Front in Serbia, as well as a Front in France. With this the Austrians who were inclined for a swift Balkan victory were thrown back with heavy losses and forced the Austrians to present a weaker defensive line to the Russian Empire which had mobilized much faster than normally
Alternatively in the campaign in France, the German experienced great success against France. Invading through Belgium the Germans pushed the French all the way back to the River Marne and the outskirts of Paris. The "Miracle at Marne" as it was called left a large German force pinned against trenches fighting against the French, and British on a huge trench defensive line extending deep through France. This ended all hopes of a swift victory and for the next four years the Germans, French, and British slugged it out for very poor gains for the amount of Sustained casualties.
Around the World however the battles continues to rage as Germanies colonies were taken by force. Japan had taken micronesian colonies, the British Samoan colonies and with a large scale colonial conflict in Africa the war was growing increasingly dim for the Germans. And When the Indians who were predicted to revolt against the British did not, the war showed the British their large amounts of loyalty as they continued to suffer and fight the Germans in Europe.
By this point various sea conflicts were happening globally as well with the German cruisers and various ships scattered around the globe used to raid and attack allied Merchant shipping. Little known to Germany however was an unsung war between Brazil, and the United States which was for influence over the Republic of Mexica which previously divided between the Spanish and Americans became influenced by the United States and Brazil. The Republic itself was extremely unstable and only kept itself afloat by instigating moderate wars with its neighbors further South and eventually securing all the territory up to Panama in the Central American Wars By This point a government friendly to the Braganza family which ruled Brazil was elected into office and this came to greatly concern the US which by this point had considerable interests in both the Mexica and Panama. In 1915 however the United States fearful of losing the Panama Canal made the executive decision to Admit a fearful Panama as a state which not only angered Brazil and Mexica, but Galvanized Colombia against the United States as well.
The Mexica, Brazillian, and Colombian armed forces all against the United States at this point began to Mobilize. The Mexica in an attempt to secure Northern Mexico, Texas, and Arizona. The Brazillians who wished to have their Sphere of Influence in South American Respected, and Colombia who by this point wished to retake Panama as well as the Canal Zone for its own profit. By late 1915 the three nations had mostly reached their full ability at mobilization. The Germans seeing a way to prevent the Americans from being involved in Europe for quite some time managed to get large diplomatic pull in the nations now opposing the United States. However by this point Germany had done almost nothing to galvanize them further.
Before the Germans even brought up the point of attempting to ally with these three nations out of convenience They all declared war simultaneously on the United States. The Shocking news delivered to President Woodrow Wilson brought him into a shocking dilemma. Reports of Brazilian and Mexica ships attacking the Caribbean State, and Colombian forces invading Panama prompted him to act quickly. He began using garrison and mobilized troops to defend areas and formed up multiple fleets to deal with the increasingly dim situation. Public support while weary of the possibility of war and feeling uneasy about the admittance of Panama as a state almost changed overnight as Volunteers for the military skyrocketed. Naval forces clashed all over the Caribbean sea, and an American fleet nearby on the Pacific side of Panama ferrying troops from San Francisco deployed to Panama almost immediately fighting in the Bitter Battle of Panama City. The battle was meant by the Colombians to end the US ability to fight in Panama but failed after a series of three waves were thrown back by American defenders.
Another easier and less destructive front Developed in Northern Mexico as the United States pushed against the very ill led Mexica Republic forces. They continued to falter for months until Brazilian troops managed to give them aid, supplies, and about 60,000 troops in the First Siege of Tenochtitlan. Which ended in a stalemate. Following this the US forces swung around the capital of the Mexica republic and pushed directly south Linking up with another landed Force from Panama. The War then pushed into a sort of Stalemate as the Second Siege of Tenochtitlan continued on until 1917.
In Europe the news of American forces entering into their own war prompted the British, French, and Russians to give their greatest hopes to the Americans who by this point were winning but were extremely Beleaguered
. The Brazilian Empire much more powerful and with much more potential than previously thought had challenged the United States and aside from its allies was holding its own. The European front by 1916 however was still much of a Stalemate with various battles Most notably the battles of Verdun and Somme showing that neither side was gaining ground and neither was either giving up. With more Fluidic fighting continuing in various areas in Southern europe and Eastern Europe the wart was not a total loss for Germany as they managed to Secure the Treaty of Brest-Litovsk which was caused by the Russian Revolution and their subsequent civil war. This manpower switch from the Eastern to Western front was extreme and managed to bring up hundreds of thousands.
However by this point the Germans were caught to be Recruiting Brazil (Which had suffered next to no casualties from Germanies unrestricted submarine warfare) to Launch a Major Invasion of the United States Caribbean State rather than the continuing naval stalemate. When the Brazilian Telegram was Discovered by the Americans the United States using this as their Causi Belli along with the Sinking of the Lusitania to Declare war on Germany and the Central powers. The US armed forces fresh off of Victories in Mexico, and the surrender of the Republic, as well as the Surrender of Encircled Colombian forces in the Battle of the Caribbean Coast were then transferred to Europe as Colombia and Brazil by this point were looking for an end to hostilities and would agree to sign a peace treaty alongside the end of war treaty in Europe.
AftermathThe First World War ended finally with the Treaty of Versailles which officially ended all hostilities. The Effects of the treaty were particularly hard on the losing powers of the war. Germany was allowed a pre war Africa and some eastern territory in exchange for its secured eastern possessions following the Treaty with Russia, Austria-Hungary was split in to multiple states, and the Ottoman empire was fully split into various mandates to be ruled by the winning powers. Across the world the treaty was particularly hard on the Republic of Mexica and forced Colombia to pay reparations to the US to help rebuild Panama and the Caribbean State. Brazil and the US however were regulated to observing their own various spheres of Influence. On the other hand the Empire of Brazil continues to persevere and just post war they enjoyed a relatively large economic, and population boom, but entered into a period of extravagantly bad relations with the United States.
The Treaty itself is labelled as one of the direct causes of the Second World War and the global rise of Fascism and militarism. The war emboldened powers such as Japan to be more aggressive in their actions, and with the Anglo-Chinese War taking place in China they were able to seize most of Northern China by force.
Along with this Germany during the Great Depression managed to become much more powerful by annexing Austria, rearming and becoming very domestically oriented and eventually coming to odds with the Soviet Union.