The Geographical Position of Germany in the First World War

Classified in History

Written at on English with a size of 2.12 KB.

How important was the geographical position of Germany in determining the outcome of the First World War?

At the beginning of the 20th century, the German Empire struggled to establish itself as a European power. It emerged as a state in 1871 and was ruled by Kaiser Wilhelm II.

The desire to conquer territories and paralyze rival empires were the main causes of WWI. Europe was divided into two alliances: The Triple Alliance, created in 1882 by Chancellor Otto von Bismarck, and The Triple Entente. The Triple Alliance consisted of Germany, Austria-Hungary, and Italy, while the Triple Entente included France, Great Britain, and Russia.

The war broke out on June 28, 1914, when a young Serbian nationalist murdered Archduke Franz Ferdinand of Austria, the heir to the Austro-Hungarian throne. This event led to the Austro-Hungarian Empire declaring war on Serbia, triggering the activation of all alliances. Russia defended Serbia as they both belonged to the Triple Entente. Consequently, Germany declared war on Russia to protect Austria-Hungary. Later, Germany declared war on France and invaded Belgium with the Schlieffen Plan to defeat France. Britain, having agreed that Belgium was neutral territory, declared war on Germany for invading Belgium without permission.

The geographical position of Germany was a key factor in its defeat in the war. Being mostly landlocked, Germany lacked access to the sea, making it difficult to import resources. However, Germany's large area with fertile farmland allowed it to perform relatively well. Other reasons for Germany's loss included weaker allies compared to the Triple Entente and inferior technology compared to its rivals.

Germany lost the First World War through the Treaty of Versailles in 1919. The victorious powers imposed sanctions on Germany, including territorial losses. Alsace and Lorraine were returned to France, West Prussia was given to Poland for sea access, and Danzig became a free city under the administration of the League of Nations. German colonies were also removed. The German military was strictly limited, and armaments were heavily restricted.

Entradas relacionadas: