The Start of World War I: The History of the Events at the Beginning of the Great War, Charles River Editors
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The Start of World War I: The History of the Events at the Beginning of the Great War

Author: Charles River Editors

Narrator: Elias Anderson

Unabridged: 2 hr 35 min

Format: Digital Audiobook

Publisher: Findaway Voices

Published: 03/24/2023

Genre: History - Military - World War I

Synopsis

By the 20th century, warfare was nothing new to the European powers, especially when it came to fighting each other. Conflicts had been a mainstay on the European continent for over two millennia. Even after the Napoleonic wars had enveloped Europe in large scale war for nearly 20 years in the 19th century, the Europeans’ imperialism continued unabated. It would take the devastation of World War I to shock Europe and jolt the world’s superpowers out of their imperialistic tendencies. 

 The final straw came June 28, 1914, when a Serbian assassinated Archduke Franz Ferdinand, the heir to the throne of Austria-Hungary, in Sarajevo, Bosnia. Austria-Hungary immediately issued ultimatums to Serbia. When they declared war on Serbia July 28, 1914, Russia mobilized for war as well. The Germans mobilized in response to Russia on July 30, and the French, still smarting from the Franco-Prussian War, mobilized for war against Germany. The British also declared war on Germany on August 4. Thus, in the span of one week, six nations had declared war, half of which had no interest in the Balkans. 

Needless to say, the First World War came at an unfortunate time for those who would fight in it. After an initial period of relatively rapid maneuver during which the German forces pushing through Belgium and the French and British forces attempting to stymie them made an endless series of abortive flanking movements that extended the lines to the sea, a stalemate naturally tended to develop. The infamous trench lines soon snaked across the French and Belgian countryside, creating an essentially futile static slaughterhouse whose sinister memory remains to this day, but if trench warfare was an inevitability during the war, it is only because the events leading up to the initial battles were quite different.

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