Why was the European war of 1914-1918 called the “Great War” and the “war to end all wars?” What made this conflict so different from previous wars?
The great war was a common name that was used to refer to first world war. Sometimes, European war was also described as the great war instead of the world war I. it was the first pan-European war since the Napoleon war with ‘great’ meaning the enormous conflict scale in Europe. In other words, the war was regarded to be the war to end all wars happening between August 1914-1918 (Maier, 2015). The phrase ‘The war to end all wars was an indication of Britsh to participate in world war I since they were engaged in other conflicts before. It was the vastest war in history that was aimed at disarmament and settlements aiming at stopping the conflicts forever. It was the greatest of wars and not another war that European nations had before, and it was going to be the last. The conflict was different from other wars due to its vastness and its significance. It was going to lead to a rebirth of society in a pure form free from class distinctions, and return to chivalrous ideals and pure from racial elements. Moreover, other believed it would bring to an end tyranny ad triumph of democracy (Maier, 2015).
What is meant by “total war?” In what ways was the First World War a total war?
Total war is the most extreme form of war whereby any behavior or action is allowed to stop an enemy to conquer the enemy (Midlarsky, 2014). In a normal form of war, soldiers will always fight other soldiers from the opposite side and ensure by all means they protect families and properties of the enemy. In a total war, soldiers are perceived to be liabilities, and in case they surrender, they can be killed instead of being taken as prisoners. Soldiers took as prisoners often end up doing hard labor or high-risk jobs. In a total war, everyone is considered an enemy. Both soldiers and civilians alike become targets. The civilians are even captured randomly and killed as a way of demonstrating the resolve of combatants. The conduct of the first war qualifies it to be a total war since total brutality and conquest characterized it by the strong nations and kingdoms (Midlarsky, 2014).
The Somme battle started on July 1, 1916. It took place at around the midpoint of world war I. it is believed to have exemplified the intensity of the war at the western front. It was also known as the Somme Offensive, and one of the biggest battles of the world war I. it took place near the Somme river in France is one of the bloodiest military battle recorded in history. The battle marks great significance to western civilization since the British were able to make great improvements regarding military and army tactics after the battle (Midlarsky, 2014).
The October revolution took place in October 1917 against the basis of European social democratic movements that had deep reservations on the idea of instigation of a socialist revolution in 1917 in Russia (Maier, 2015). It was led by Bolshevik and played a critical role in the larger Russian Revolution. It, therefore, holds great significance in western civilization by triggering the Russian Revolution of 1917.
World War I Oversimplified
After watching the video on world war I oversimplified, there are significant causes of the war. The immediate and direct cause of the war was the assassination of Archduke Franz Ferdinand of Austria Hungary at Sarajevo in 28th June 1914. A Serbian –nationalist terrorist group sent a group to assassinate the Archduke. A Serbian nationalist, GarviloPrincip succeeded to assassinate him and his wife while at Sarajevo-Bosnia (Midlarsky, 2014). Germany and Russia are believed to be the main culprits of the war.
Maier, C. S. (2015). Recasting bourgeois Europe: stabilization in France, Germany, and Italy in the decade after World War I. Princeton University Press.
Midlarsky, M. I. (2014). The Onset of World War (Routledge Revivals).Routledge.