World War I
|World War I|
Clockwise from the top:
|Commanders and leaders|
|Total: 42,928,000||Total: 25,248,000|
|68,176,000 (Total all)|
|Casualties and losses|
Military deaths by country:
Military deaths by country:
|Events leading to World War I|
World War I, often abbreviated as WWI or WW1, also known as the First World War or the Great War, was an international conflict that began on 28 July 1914 and ended on 11 November 1918. It involved much of Europe, as well as Russia, the United States and Turkey, and was fought in the Middle East, Africa and parts of Asia. One of the deadliest conflicts in history, an estimated 9 million were killed in combat, while over 5 million civilians died from occupation, bombardment, hunger or disease. Genocides and the 1918 Spanish flu pandemic spread by the movement of combatants during the war caused many millions of additional deaths worldwide.
In 1914, the Great Powers were divided into two opposing alliances, the Triple Entente, consisting of France, Russia, and Britain, and the Triple Alliance, made up of Germany, Austria-Hungary, and Italy. Tensions in the Balkans came to a head on 28 June 1914 following the assassination of Archduke Franz Ferdinand, the Austro-Hungarian heir, by Gavrilo Princip, a Bosnian Serb. Austria-Hungary blamed Serbia and the interlocking alliances involved the Powers in a series of diplomatic exchanges known as the July Crisis. On 28 July, Austria-Hungary declared war on Serbia; Russia came to Serbia's defence and by 4 August, the conflict had expanded to include Germany, France and Britain, along with their respective colonial empires. In November, the Ottoman Empire, Germany and Austria formed the Central Powers, while in April 1915, Italy joined Britain, France, Russia and Serbia as the Allied Powers.
Facing a war on two fronts, German strategy in 1914 was to defeat France, then shift its forces to the East and knock out Russia, commonly known as the Schlieffen Plan. This failed when their advance into France was halted at the Marne; by the end of 1914, the two sides faced each other along the Western Front, a continuous series of trench lines stretching from the Channel to Switzerland that changed little until 1917. By contrast, the Eastern Front was far more fluid, with Austria-Hungary and Russia gaining, then losing large swathes of territory. Other significant theatres included the Middle East, the Alpine Front and the Balkans, bringing Bulgaria, Romania and Greece into the war.
Shortages caused by the Allied naval blockade led Germany to initiate unrestricted submarine warfare in early 1917, bringing the previously neutral United States into the war on 6 April 1917. In Russia, the Bolsheviks seized power in the 1917 October Revolution and made peace in the March 1918 Treaty of Brest-Litovsk, freeing up large numbers of German troops. By transferring these to the Western Front, the German General Staff hoped to win a decisive victory before American reinforcements could impact the war, and launched the March 1918 German Spring Offensive. Despite initial success, it was soon halted by heavy casualties and ferocious defence; in August, the Allies launched the Hundred Days Offensive and although the German army continued to fight hard, it could no longer halt their advance.
The Central Powers began to collapse; Bulgaria signed an Armistice on 29 September, followed by the Ottomans on 31 October, then Austria-Hungary on 3 November. Isolated, facing revolution at home and an army on the verge of mutiny, Kaiser Wilhelm abdicated on 9 November and the new German government signed the Armistice of 11 November 1918, bringing the fighting to a close. The 1919 Paris Peace Conference imposed various settlements on the defeated powers, the best known being the Treaty of Versailles. The dissolution of the Russian, German, Ottoman and Austro-Hungarian empires led to numerous uprisings and the creation of independent states, including Poland, Czechoslovakia and Yugoslavia. For reasons that are still debated, failure to manage the instability that resulted from this upheaval during the Interwar period ended with the outbreak of World War II in 1939.
The term world war was first coined in September 1914 by German biologist and philosopher Ernst Haeckel. He claimed that "there is no doubt that the course and character of the feared 'European War' ... will become the first world war in the full sense of the word," citing a wire service report in The Indianapolis Star on 20 September 1914.
Prior to World War II, the events of 1914–1918 were generally known as the Great War or simply the World War. In October 1914, the Canadian magazine Maclean's wrote, "Some wars name themselves. This is the Great War." Contemporary Europeans also referred to it as "the war to end war" or "the war to end all wars" due to their perception of its then-unparalleled scale and devastation. After World War II began in 1939, the terms became more standard, with British Empire historians, including Canadians, favouring "The First World War" and Americans "World War I".
Political and military alliances
For much of the 19th century, the major European powers maintained a tenuous balance of power among themselves, known as the Concert of Europe. After 1848, this was challenged by a variety of factors, including Britain's withdrawal into so-called splendid isolation, the decline of the Ottoman Empire and the rise of Prussia under Otto von Bismarck. The 1866 Austro-Prussian War established Prussian hegemony in Germany, while victory in the 1870–1871 Franco-Prussian War allowed Bismarck to consolidate the German states into a German Empire under Prussian leadership. Avenging the defeat of 1871, or revanchism, and recovering the provinces of Alsace-Lorraine became the principal objects of French policy for the next forty years.
In order to isolate France and avoid a war on two fronts, Bismarck negotiated the League of the Three Emperors (German: Dreikaiserbund) between Austria-Hungary, Russia and Germany. After Russian victory in the 1877–1878 Russo-Turkish War, the League was dissolved due to Austrian concerns over Russian influence in the Balkans, an area they considered of vital strategic interest. Germany and Austria-Hungary then formed the 1879 Dual Alliance, which became the Triple Alliance when Italy joined in 1882. For Bismarck, the purpose of these agreements was to isolate France by ensuring the three Empires resolved any disputes between themselves; when this was threatened in 1880 by British and French attempts to negotiate directly with Russia, he reformed the League in 1881, which was renewed in 1883 and 1885. After the agreement lapsed in 1887, he replaced it with the Reinsurance Treaty, a secret agreement between Germany and Russia to remain neutral if either were attacked by France or Austria-Hungary.
Bismarck viewed peace with Russia as the foundation of German foreign policy but after becoming Kaiser in 1890, Wilhelm II forced him to retire and was persuaded not to renew the Reinsurance Treaty by Leo von Caprivi, his new Chancellor. This provided France an opportunity to counteract the Triple Alliance, by signing the Franco-Russian Alliance in 1894, followed by the 1904 Entente Cordiale with Britain, and the Triple Entente was completed by the 1907 Anglo-Russian Convention. While these were not formal alliances, by settling long-standing colonial disputes in Africa and Asia, British entry into any future conflict involving France or Russia became a possibility. British and Russian support for France against Germany during the Second Moroccan Crisis in 1911 reinforced their relationship and increased Anglo-German estrangement, deepening the divisions that would erupt in 1914.
Creation of a unified Reich, along with indemnity payments imposed on France and the acquisition of important coal and iron deposits in the annexed provinces of Alsace-Lorraine, fuelled an economic boom and huge increase in German industrial strength. With the backing of Wilhelm II, after 1890 Admiral Alfred von Tirpitz sought to exploit this growth to create a Kaiserliche Marine, or Imperial German Navy, able to compete with the British Royal Navy for world naval supremacy. He was greatly influenced by US naval strategist Alfred Thayer Mahan, who argued possession of a blue-water navy was vital for global power projection; Tirpitz had his books translated into German, while Wilhelm made them required reading for his advisors and senior military personnel.
However, it was also an emotional decision, driven by Wilhelm's simultaneous admiration for the Royal Navy and his desire to outdo it. Bismarck stressed the need to avoid antagonising Britain, a policy made easier by his opposition to acquiring colonies, but this challenge could not be ignored and resulted in the Anglo-German naval arms race. The launch of HMS Dreadnought in 1906 gave the British a technological advantage over their German rival which they never lost. Ultimately, the race diverted huge resources to creating a German navy large enough to antagonise Britain, but not defeat it; in 1911, Chancellor Theobald von Bethmann-Hollweg acknowledged defeat, leading to the Rüstungswende or ‘armaments turning point', when he switched expenditure from the navy to the army.
This was driven by concern over Russia's recovery from defeat in the 1905 Russo-Japanese War and the subsequent revolution. Economic reforms backed by French funding led to a significant post-1908 expansion of railways and infrastructure, particularly in its western border regions. Germany and Austria-Hungary relied on faster mobilisation to compensate for fewer numbers and it was the potential threat posed by the closing of this gap that led to the end of the naval race, rather than a reduction in tensions. When Germany expanded its standing army by 170,000 men in 1913, France extended compulsory military service from two to three years; similar measures taken by the Balkan powers and Italy, which led to increased expenditure by the Ottomans and Austria-Hungary. Absolute figures are hard to calculate due to differences in categorising expenditure, since they often omit civilian infrastructure projects with a military use, such as railways. However, from 1908 to 1913, defence spending by the six major European powers increased by over 50% in real terms.
Conflicts in the Balkans
The years before 1914 were marked by a series of crises in the Balkans as other powers sought to benefit from Ottoman decline. While Pan-Slavic and Orthodox Russia considered itself the protector of Serbia and other Slav states, the strategic importance of the Bosporus straits meant they preferred these be controlled by a weak Ottoman government, rather than an ambitious power like Bulgaria. Balancing these competing objectives required simultaneously backing their clients while limiting their territorial gains, dividing Russian policy makers and adding to the instability of this region.
At the same time, many Austrian statesmen considered the Balkans essential for the continued existence of their Empire and Serbian expansion as a direct threat to it. The 1908-1909 Bosnian crisis began when Austria annexed the former Ottoman territory of Bosnia and Herzegovina, which it had occupied since 1878. Timed to coincide with the Bulgarian Declaration of Independence from the Ottoman Empire, this unilateral action was denounced by all the Great Powers; unable to reverse it, they amended the 1878 Treaty of Berlin and accepted Austrian annexation. Some historians see this as a significant escalation, ending any chance of Russia and Austria co-operating in the Balkans, while damaging Austrian relations with Serbia and Italy, who had their own expansionist ambitions in the area.
Tensions were further heightened by the 1911 to 1912 Italo-Turkish War, which demonstrated the apparent inability of the Ottomans to retain their empire and led to the formation of the Balkan League. An alliance of Serbia, Bulgaria, Montenegro, and Greece, the League over-ran most of European Turkey in the 1912 to 1913 First Balkan War. Despite its decline, the Great Powers had assumed the Ottoman army was powerful enough to defeat the League and its collapse took them by surprise. The Serbian capture of ports on the Adriatic resulted in partial Austrian mobilisation on 21 November 1912, including units along the Russian border in Galicia. When the Council of Ministers of the Russian Empire met to consider their response next day, they decided not to mobilise, fearing Germany would do the same and start a European war for which they were not yet prepared.
The Great Powers sought to re-assert control through the 1913 Treaty of London, which created an independent Albania, while enlarging the territories of Bulgaria, Serbia, Montenegro and Greece. However, disputes between the victors sparked the 33-day Second Balkan War, when Bulgaria attacked Serbia and Greece on 16 June 1913; it was defeated, losing most of Macedonia to Serbia and Greece, and Southern Dobruja to Romania. The end result was that even countries which benefited from the Balkan Wars, such as Serbia and Greece, felt cheated of their "rightful gains", while for Austria it demonstrated the apparent indifference with which other powers viewed their concerns, including Germany. This complex mix of resentment, nationalism and insecurity help explain why the pre-1914 Balkans became known as the "powder keg of Europe".
On 28 June 1914, Archduke Franz Ferdinand of Austria, heir presumptive to Emperor Franz Joseph, visited Sarajevo, capital of the recently annexed provinces of Bosnia and Herzegovina. Six assassins [o] from the movement known as Young Bosnia, or Mlada Bosna, took up positions along the route taken by the Archduke's motorcade, with the intention of assassinating him. Supplied with arms by extremists within the Serbian Black Hand intelligence organisation, they hoped his death would free Bosnia from Austrian rule, although there was little agreement on what would replace it.
Nedeljko Čabrinović threw a hand grenade at the Archduke's car and injured two of his aides, who were taken to hospital while the convoy carried on. The other assassins were also unsuccessful but an hour later, as Ferdinand was returning from visiting the injured officers, his car took a wrong turn into a street where Gavrilo Princip was standing. He stepped forward and fired two pistol shots, fatally wounding Ferdinand and his wife Sophie, who both died shortly thereafter. Although Emperor Franz Joseph was shocked by the incident, political and personal differences meant the two men were not close; allegedly, his first reported comment was "A higher power has re-established the order which I, alas, could not preserve".
According to historian Zbyněk Zeman, his reaction was reflected more broadly in Vienna, where "the event almost failed to make any impression whatsoever. On Sunday 28 June and Monday 29th, the crowds listened to music and drank wine, as if nothing had happened." Nevertheless, the impact of the murder of the heir to the throne was significant, and has been described by historian Christopher Clark as a "9/11 effect, a terrorist event charged with historic meaning, transforming the political chemistry in Vienna".
Expansion of violence in Bosnia and Herzegovina
The Austro-Hungarian authorities encouraged the subsequent anti-Serb riots in Sarajevo, in which Bosnian Croats and Bosniaks killed two Bosnian Serbs and damaged numerous Serb-owned buildings. Violent actions against ethnic Serbs were also organised outside Sarajevo, in other cities in Austro-Hungarian-controlled Bosnia and Herzegovina, Croatia and Slovenia. Austro-Hungarian authorities in Bosnia and Herzegovina imprisoned and extradited approximately 5,500 prominent Serbs, 700 to 2,200 of whom died in prison. A further 460 Serbs were sentenced to death. A predominantly Bosniak special militia known as the Schutzkorps was established and carried out the persecution of Serbs.
The assassination initiated the July Crisis, a month of diplomatic manoeuvring between Austria-Hungary, Germany, Russia, France and Britain. Correctly believing intelligence officials from the Black Hand were involved in the plot to murder the Archduke, Austria wanted to end Serbian interference in Bosnia and believed war was the best way to achieve this. However, the Austrian-Hungarian Foreign Ministry had no proof of Serbian involvement, and a dossier belatedly compiled to make its case was riddled with errors. On 23 July, Austria delivered an ultimatum to Serbia, listing ten demands made intentionally unacceptable to provide an excuse for starting hostilities.
Serbia ordered general mobilisation on 25 July, but accepted all the terms, except for those empowering Austrian representatives to suppress "subversive elements" inside Serbia, and take part in the investigation and trial of Serbians linked to the assassination. Claiming this amounted to a wholesale rejection, Austria broke off diplomatic relations and ordered partial mobilisation the next day; on 28 July, they declared war on Serbia and started shelling Belgrade. Having initiated war preparations on 25 July, Russia now ordered general mobilisation in support of Serbia on 30th.
Anxious to ensure backing from the SDP political opposition by presenting Russia as the aggressor, Bethmann-Hollweg delayed commencement of war preparations until 31 July. That afternoon the Russian government was given an ultimatum, requiring they "cease all war measures against Germany and Austria-Hungary" within 12 hours. Germany also demanded assurances France would remain neutral; the French refused and ordered general mobilisation but delayed declaring war. In reality, the German General Staff had long assumed a war on two fronts; originally completed in 1905, the Schlieffen Plan envisaged the bulk of the army would be used to defeat France in four weeks, before doing the same to Russia. In accordance with this, mobilisation orders were issued that afternoon.
At a meeting on 29 July, the British cabinet had narrowly decided its obligations to Belgium under the 1839 Treaty of London did not require it to oppose a German invasion with military force. However, this was largely driven by Prime Minister Asquith's desire to maintain unity; he and his senior Cabinet ministers were already committed to support France, the Royal Navy had been mobilised and public opinion was strongly in favour of intervention. On 31 July, Britain sent notes to Germany and France, asking them to respect Belgian neutrality; France pledged to do so, Germany did not reply.
Once the German ultimatum to Russia expired on the morning of 1 August, the two countries were at war. Later the same day, Wilhelm was informed by his Ambassador in London, Prince Lichnowsky, that Britain would remain neutral if France was not attacked, and in any case might be stayed by a crisis in Ireland. Jubilant at this news, he ordered General Moltke, the German chief of staff, to "march the whole of the ... army to the East", an instruction that nearly caused him to resign. Lichnowsky quickly realised he was mistaken, although Wilhelm insisted on waiting for a telegram from his cousin George V; once received, it confirmed there had been a misunderstanding and he told Moltke "Now do what you want."
French intelligence was well aware of German plans to attack through Belgium, and their Commander-in-Chief, General Joseph Joffre, asked that his troops be allowed to cross the border to pre-empt such a move. This was rejected by the French government, in part to avoid antagonising the British, and Joffre was told any advance into Belgium could come only after a German invasion. On 2 August, Germany occupied Luxembourg and exchanged fire with French units; on 3 August, they declared war on France and demanded the Belgians allow them unimpeded right of way, which was refused. Early on the morning of 4 August, the Germans invaded; Albert I of Belgium ordered his army to resist and called for assistance under the Treaty of London. Britain demanded Germany respect Belgian neutrality and withdraw; the ultimatum expired at midnight without a response, leaving the two countries at war.
Progress of the war
Confusion among the Central Powers
The strategy of the Central Powers suffered from miscommunication. Germany had promised to support Austria-Hungary's invasion of Serbia, but interpretations of what this meant differed. Previously tested deployment plans had been replaced early in 1914, but those had never been tested in exercises. Austro-Hungarian leaders believed Germany would cover its northern flank against Russia. Germany, however, envisioned Austria-Hungary directing most of its troops against Russia, while Germany dealt with France. This confusion forced the Austro-Hungarian Army to divide its forces between the Russian and Serbian fronts.
Beginning on 12 August, the Austrian and Serbs clashed at the battles of the Cer and Kolubara; over the next two weeks, Austrian attacks were repulsed with heavy losses, dashing their hopes of a swift victory and marking the first major Allied victories of the war. As a result, Austria had to keep sizeable forces on the Serbian front, weakening its efforts against Russia. Serbia's defeat of the 1914 invasion has been called one of the major upset victories of the twentieth century. In spring 1915, the campaign saw the first use of anti-aircraft warfare after an Austrian plane was shot down with ground-to-air fire, as well as the first medical evacuation by the Serbian army in autumn 1915.
German Offensive in Belgium and France
When the war began, the German Order of Battle placed 80% of the army in the West, with the remainder acting as a screening force in the East. The plan was to quickly knock France out of the war, then redeploy to the East and do the same to Russia.
The German offensive in the West was officially titled Aufmarsch II West, but is better known as the Schlieffen Plan, after its original creator. Schlieffen deliberately kept the German left (i.e. its positions in Alsace-Lorraine) weak to lure the French into attacking there, while the majority were allocated to the German right, so as to sweep through Belgium, encircle Paris and trap the French armies against the Swiss border. This strategy was actually helped by the French themselves, since their Plan XVII envisaged a major offensive into the "lost provinces" of Alsace-Lorraine. However, Schlieffen's successor Moltke grew concerned that the French might push too hard on his left flank. Consequently, as the German Army increased in size in the years leading up to the war, he changed the allocation of forces between the German right and left wings from 85:15 to 70:30. Ultimately, Moltke's changes meant insufficient forces to achieve decisive success and thus unrealistic goals and timings.[dubious ]
The initial German advance in the West was very successful: by the end of August the Allied left, which included the British Expeditionary Force (BEF), was in full retreat; French casualties in the first month exceeded 260,000, including 27,000 killed on 22 August during the Battle of the Frontiers. German planning provided broad strategic instructions, while allowing army commanders considerable freedom in carrying them out at the front; this worked well in 1866 and 1870 but in 1914, von Kluck used this freedom to disobey orders, opening a gap between the German armies as they closed on Paris. The French and British exploited this gap to halt the German advance east of Paris at the First Battle of the Marne from 5 to 12 September and push the German forces back some 50 km (31 mi).
In 1911, the Russian Stavka had agreed with the French to attack Germany within 15 days of mobilisation; this was unrealistic and the two Russian armies that entered East Prussia on 17 August did so without many of their support elements. The Russian Second Army was effectively destroyed at the Battle of Tannenberg on 26–30 August but the Russian advance caused the Germans to re-route their 8th Field Army from France to East Prussia, a factor in Allied victory on the Marne.
By the end of 1914, German troops held strong defensive positions inside France, controlled the bulk of France's domestic coalfields and had inflicted 230,000 more casualties than it lost itself. However, communications problems and questionable command decisions cost Germany the chance of a decisive outcome, while it had failed to achieve the primary objective of avoiding a long, two-front war. As was apparent to a number of German leaders, this amounted to a strategic defeat; shortly after the Marne, Crown Prince Wilhelm told an American reporter; "We have lost the war. It will go on for a long time but it is already lost."
Asia and the Pacific
On 30 August 1914, New Zealand occupied German Samoa, now the independent state of Samoa. On 11 September, the Australian Naval and Military Expeditionary Force landed on the island of New Britain, then part of German New Guinea. On 28 October, the German cruiser SMS Emden sank the Russian cruiser Zhemchug in the Battle of Penang. Japan declared war on Germany prior to seizing territories in the Pacific which later became the South Seas Mandate, as well as German Treaty ports on the Chinese Shandong peninsula at Tsingtao and Qingdao. After Vienna refused to withdraw its cruiser SMS Kaiserin Elisabeth from Tsingtao, Japan declared war on Austria-Hungary as well, and the ship was sunk at Tsingtao in November 1914. Within a few months, Allied forces had seized all German territories in the Pacific, leaving only isolated commerce raiders and a few holdouts in New Guinea.
Some of the first clashes of the war involved British, French, and German colonial forces in Africa. On 6–7 August, French and British troops invaded the German protectorate of Togoland and Kamerun. On 10 August, German forces in South-West Africa attacked South Africa; sporadic and fierce fighting continued for the rest of the war. The German colonial forces in German East Africa, led by Colonel Paul von Lettow-Vorbeck, fought a guerrilla warfare campaign during World War I and only surrendered two weeks after the armistice took effect in Europe.
Indian support for the Allies
Germany attempted to use Indian nationalism and pan-Islamism to its advantage, instigating uprisings in India, and sending a mission that urged Afghanistan to join the war on the side of Central Powers. However, contrary to British fears of a revolt in India, the outbreak of the war saw an unprecedented outpouring of loyalty and goodwill towards Britain. Indian political leaders from the Indian National Congress and other groups were eager to support the British war effort since they believed that strong support for the war effort would further the cause of Indian Home Rule. The Indian Army in fact outnumbered the British Army at the beginning of the war; about 1.3 million Indian soldiers and labourers served in Europe, Africa, and the Middle East, while the central government and the princely states sent large supplies of food, money, and ammunition. In all, 140,000 men served on the Western Front and nearly 700,000 in the Middle East. Casualties of Indian soldiers totalled 47,746 killed and 65,126 wounded during World War I. The suffering engendered by the war, as well as the failure of the British government to grant self-government to India after the end of hostilities, bred disillusionment and fuelled the campaign for full independence that would be led by Mohandas K. Gandhi and others.
Trench warfare begins
Pre-war military tactics that emphasised open warfare and the individual rifleman proved obsolete when confronted with conditions prevailing in 1914. Technological advances allowed the creation of strong defensive systems largely impervious to massed infantry advances, such as Barbed wire, machine guns and above all far more powerful artillery, which dominated the battlefield and made crossing open ground extremely difficult. Both sides struggled to develop tactics for breaching entrenched positions without suffering heavy casualties. In time, however, technology began to produce new offensive weapons, such as gas warfare and the tank.
After the First Battle of the Marne in September 1914, Allied and German forces unsuccessfully tried to outflank each other, a series of manoeuvres later known as the "Race to the Sea". By the end of 1914, the opposing forces confronted each other along an uninterrupted line of entrenched positions from the Channel to the Swiss border. Since the Germans were normally able to choose where to stand, they generally held the high ground; in addition, their trenches tended to be better built, since Anglo-French trenches were initially intended as "temporary," and would only be needed until the breaking of German defences.
Both sides tried to break the stalemate using scientific and technological advances. On 22 April 1915, at the Second Battle of Ypres, the Germans (violating the Hague Convention) used chlorine gas for the first time on the Western Front. Several types of gas soon became widely used by both sides, and though it never proved a decisive, battle-winning weapon, poison gas became one of the most-feared and best-remembered horrors of the war.
Continuation of trench warfare
Neither side proved able to deliver a decisive blow for the next two years. Throughout 1915–17, the British Empire and France suffered more casualties than Germany, because of both the strategic and tactical stances chosen by the sides. Strategically, while the Germans mounted only one major offensive, the Allies made several attempts to break through the German lines.
In February 1916 the Germans attacked French defensive positions at the Battle of Verdun, lasting until December 1916. The Germans made initial gains, before French counter-attacks returned matters to near their starting point. Casualties were greater for the French, but the Germans bled heavily as well, with anywhere from 700,000 to 975,000 casualties suffered between the two combatants. Verdun became a symbol of French determination and self-sacrifice.
The Battle of the Somme was an Anglo-French offensive of July to November 1916. The opening day of the offensive (1 July 1916) was the bloodiest day in the history of the British Army, suffering 57,470 casualties, including 19,240 dead. The entire Somme offensive cost the British Army some 420,000 casualties. The French suffered another estimated 200,000 casualties and the Germans an estimated 500,000. Gun fire was not the only factor taking lives; the diseases that emerged in the trenches were a major killer on both sides. The living conditions made it so that countless diseases and infections occurred, such as trench foot, shell shock, blindness/burns from mustard gas, lice, trench fever, "cooties" (body lice) and the 'Spanish flu'.
To maintain morale, wartime censors minimised early reports of widespread influenza illness and mortality in Germany, the United Kingdom, France, and the United States. Papers were free to report the epidemic's effects in neutral Spain (such as the grave illness of King Alfonso XIII). This created a false impression of Spain as especially hard hit, thereby giving rise to the pandemic's nickname, "Spanish flu".
Protracted action at Verdun throughout 1916, combined with the bloodletting at the Somme, brought the exhausted French army to the brink of collapse. Futile attempts using frontal assault came at a high price for both the British and the French and led to the widespread French Army Mutinies, after the failure of the costly Nivelle Offensive of April–May 1917. The concurrent British Battle of Arras was more limited in scope, and more successful, although ultimately of little strategic value. A smaller part of the Arras offensive, the capture of Vimy Ridge by the Canadian Corps, became highly significant to that country: the idea that Canada's national identity was born out of the battle is an opinion widely held in military and general histories of Canada.
The last large-scale offensive of this period was a British attack (with French support) at Passchendaele (July–November 1917). This offensive opened with great promise for the Allies, before bogging down in the October mud. Casualties, though disputed, were roughly equal, at some 200,000–400,000 per side.
The years of trench warfare on the Western front achieved no major exchanges of territory and, as a result, are often thought of as static and unchanging. However, throughout this period, British, French, and German tactics constantly evolved to meet new battlefield challenges.
At the start of the war, the German Empire had cruisers scattered across the globe, some of which were subsequently used to attack Allied merchant shipping. The British Royal Navy systematically hunted them down, though not without some embarrassment from its inability to protect Allied shipping. Before the beginning of the war, it was widely understood that Britain held the position of strongest, most influential navy in the world.[unreliable source?] The publishing of the book The Influence of Sea Power upon History by Alfred Thayer Mahan in 1890 was intended to encourage the United States to increase its naval power. Instead, this book made it to Germany and inspired its readers to try to over-power the British Royal Navy. For example, the German detached light cruiser SMS Emden, part of the East Asia Squadron stationed at Qingdao, seized or destroyed 15 merchantmen, as well as sinking a Russian cruiser and a French destroyer. However, most of the German East-Asia squadron—consisting of the armoured cruisers SMS Scharnhorst and Gneisenau, light cruisers Nürnberg and Leipzig and two transport ships—did not have orders to raid shipping and was instead underway to Germany when it met British warships. The German flotilla and Dresden sank two armoured cruisers at the Battle of Coronel, but was virtually destroyed at the Battle of the Falkland Islands in December 1914, with only Dresden and a few auxiliaries escaping, but after the Battle of Más a Tierra these too had been destroyed or interned.
Soon after the outbreak of hostilities, Britain began a naval blockade of Germany. The strategy proved effective, cutting off vital military and civilian supplies, although this blockade violated accepted international law codified by several international agreements of the past two centuries. Britain mined international waters to prevent any ships from entering entire sections of ocean, causing danger to even neutral ships. Since there was limited response to this tactic of the British, Germany expected a similar response to its unrestricted submarine warfare.
The Battle of Jutland (German: Skagerrakschlacht, or "Battle of the Skagerrak") in May/June 1916 developed into the largest naval battle of the war. It was the only full-scale clash of battleships during the war, and one of the largest in history. The Kaiserliche Marine's High Seas Fleet, commanded by Vice Admiral Reinhard Scheer, fought the Royal Navy's Grand Fleet, led by Admiral Sir John Jellicoe. The engagement was a stand off, as the Germans were outmanoeuvred by the larger British fleet, but managed to escape and inflicted more damage to the British fleet than they received. Strategically, however, the British asserted their control of the sea, and the bulk of the German surface fleet remained confined to port for the duration of the war.
German U-boats attempted to cut the supply lines between North America and Britain. The nature of submarine warfare meant that attacks often came without warning, giving the crews of the merchant ships little hope of survival. The United States launched a protest, and Germany changed its rules of engagement. After the sinking of the passenger ship RMS Lusitania in 1915, Germany promised not to target passenger liners, while Britain armed its merchant ships, placing them beyond the protection of the "cruiser rules", which demanded warning and movement of crews to "a place of safety" (a standard that lifeboats did not meet). Finally, in early 1917, Germany adopted a policy of unrestricted submarine warfare, realising the Americans would eventually enter the war. Germany sought to strangle Allied sea lanes before the United States could transport a large army overseas, but after initial successes eventually failed to do so.
The U-boat threat lessened in 1917, when merchant ships began travelling in convoys, escorted by destroyers. This tactic made it difficult for U-boats to find targets, which significantly lessened losses; after the hydrophone and depth charges were introduced, accompanying destroyers could attack a submerged submarine with some hope of success. Convoys slowed the flow of supplies since ships had to wait as convoys were assembled. The solution to the delays was an extensive program of building new freighters. Troopships were too fast for the submarines and did not travel the North Atlantic in convoys. The U-boats had sunk more than 5,000 Allied ships, at a cost of 199 submarines.
World War I also saw the first use of aircraft carriers in combat, with HMS Furious launching Sopwith Camels in a successful raid against the Zeppelin hangars at Tondern in July 1918, as well as blimps for antisubmarine patrol.
War in the Balkans
Faced with Russia in the east, Austria-Hungary could spare only one-third of its army to attack Serbia. After suffering heavy losses, the Austrians briefly occupied the Serbian capital, Belgrade. A Serbian counter-attack in the Battle of Kolubara succeeded in driving them from the country by the end of 1914. For the first ten months of 1915, Austria-Hungary used most of its military reserves to fight Italy. German and Austro-Hungarian diplomats, however, scored a coup by persuading Bulgaria to join the attack on Serbia. The Austro-Hungarian provinces of Slovenia, Croatia and Bosnia provided troops for Austria-Hungary in the fight with Serbia, Russia and Italy. Montenegro allied itself with Serbia.
Bulgaria declared war on Serbia on 12 October 1915 and joined in the attack by the Austro-Hungarian army under Mackensen's army of 250,000 that was already underway. Serbia was conquered in a little more than a month, as the Central Powers, now including Bulgaria, sent in 600,000 troops total. The Serbian army, fighting on two fronts and facing certain defeat, retreated into northern Albania. The Serbs suffered defeat in the Battle of Kosovo. Montenegro covered the Serbian retreat towards the Adriatic coast in the Battle of Mojkovac in 6–7 January 1916, but ultimately the Austrians also conquered Montenegro. The surviving Serbian soldiers were evacuated by ship to Greece. After conquest, Serbia was divided between Austro-Hungary and Bulgaria.
In late 1915, a Franco-British force landed at Salonica in Greece to offer assistance and to pressure its government to declare war against the Central Powers. However, the pro-German King Constantine I dismissed the pro-Allied government of Eleftherios Venizelos before the Allied expeditionary force arrived. The friction between the King of Greece and the Allies continued to accumulate with the National Schism, which effectively divided Greece between regions still loyal to the king and the new provisional government of Venizelos in Salonica. After intense negotiations and an armed confrontation in Athens between Allied and royalist forces (an incident known as Noemvriana), the King of Greece resigned and his second son Alexander took his place; Greece officially joined the war on the side of the Allies in June 1917.
The Macedonian front was initially mostly static. French and Serbian forces retook limited areas of Macedonia by recapturing Bitola on 19 November 1916 following the costly Monastir Offensive, which brought stabilisation of the front.
Serbian and French troops finally made a breakthrough in September 1918 in the Vardar Offensive, after most of the German and Austro-Hungarian troops had been withdrawn. The Bulgarians were defeated at the Battle of Dobro Pole, and by 25 September British and French troops had crossed the border into Bulgaria proper as the Bulgarian army collapsed. Bulgaria capitulated four days later, on 29 September 1918. The German high command responded by despatching troops to hold the line, but these forces were far too weak to re-establish a front.
The disappearance of the Macedonian front meant that the road to Budapest and Vienna was now opened to Allied forces. Hindenburg and Ludendorff concluded that the strategic and operational balance had now shifted decidedly against the Central Powers and, a day after the Bulgarian collapse, insisted on an immediate peace settlement.
The Ottomans threatened Russia's Caucasian territories and Britain's communications with India via the Suez Canal. As the conflict progressed, the Ottoman Empire took advantage of the European powers' preoccupation with the war and conducted large-scale ethnic cleansing of the indigenous Armenian, Greek, and Assyrian Christian populations, known as the Armenian genocide, Greek genocide, and Assyrian genocide.
The British and French opened overseas fronts with the Gallipoli (1915) and Mesopotamian campaigns (1914). In Gallipoli, the Ottoman Empire successfully repelled the British, French, and Australian and New Zealand Army Corps (ANZACs). In Mesopotamia, by contrast, after the defeat of the British defenders in the Siege of Kut by the Ottomans (1915–16), British Imperial forces reorganised and captured Baghdad in March 1917. The British were aided in Mesopotamia by local Arab and Assyrian tribesmen, while the Ottomans employed local Kurdish and Turcoman tribes.
Further to the west, the Suez Canal was defended from Ottoman attacks in 1915 and 1916; in August, a German and Ottoman force was defeated at the Battle of Romani by the ANZAC Mounted Division and the 52nd (Lowland) Infantry Division. Following this victory, an Egyptian Expeditionary Force advanced across the Sinai Peninsula, pushing Ottoman forces back in the Battle of Magdhaba in December and the Battle of Rafa on the border between the Egyptian Sinai and Ottoman Palestine in January 1917.
Russian armies generally had success in the Caucasus campaign. Enver Pasha, supreme commander of the Ottoman armed forces, was ambitious and dreamed of re-conquering central Asia and areas that had been lost to Russia previously. He was, however, a poor commander. He launched an offensive against the Russians in the Caucasus in December 1914 with 100,000 troops, insisting on a frontal attack against mountainous Russian positions in winter. He lost 86% of his force at the Battle of Sarikamish.
The Ottoman Empire, with German support, invaded Persia (modern Iran) in December 1914 in an effort to cut off British and Russian access to petroleum reservoirs around Baku near the Caspian Sea. Persia, ostensibly neutral, had long been under the spheres of British and Russian influence. The Ottomans and Germans were aided by Kurdish and Azeri forces, together with a large number of major Iranian tribes, such as the Qashqai, Tangistanis, Luristanis, and Khamseh, while the Russians and British had the support of Armenian and Assyrian forces. The Persian Campaign was to last until 1918 and end in failure for the Ottomans and their allies. However, the Russian withdrawal from the war in 1917 led to Armenian and Assyrian forces, who had hitherto inflicted a series of defeats upon the forces of the Ottomans and their allies, being cut off from supply lines, outnumbered, outgunned and isolated, forcing them to fight and flee towards British lines in northern Mesopotamia.
General Yudenich, the Russian commander from 1915 to 1916, drove the Turks out of most of the southern Caucasus with a string of victories. During the 1916 campaign, the Russians defeated the Turks in the Erzurum Offensive, also occupying Trabzon. In 1917, Russian Grand Duke Nicholas assumed command of the Caucasus front. Nicholas planned a railway from Russian Georgia to the conquered territories so that fresh supplies could be brought up for a new offensive in 1917. However, in March 1917 (February in the pre-revolutionary Russian calendar), the Tsar abdicated in the course of the February Revolution, and the Russian Caucasus Army began to fall apart.
The Arab Revolt, instigated by the Arab bureau of the British Foreign Office, started June 1916 with the Battle of Mecca, led by Sherif Hussein of Mecca, and ended with the Ottoman surrender of Damascus. Fakhri Pasha, the Ottoman commander of Medina, resisted for more than two and half years during the Siege of Medina before surrendering in January 1919.
The Senussi tribe, along the border of Italian Libya and British Egypt, incited and armed by the Turks, waged a small-scale guerrilla war against Allied troops. The British were forced to dispatch 12,000 troops to oppose them in the Senussi Campaign. Their rebellion was finally crushed in mid-1916.
Total Allied casualties on the Ottoman fronts amounted 650,000 men. Total Ottoman casualties were 725,000 (325,000 dead and 400,000 wounded).
Italy had been allied with the German and Austro-Hungarian Empires since 1882 as part of the Triple Alliance. However, the nation had its own designs on Austro-Hungarian territory in Trentino, the Austrian Littoral, Fiume (Rijeka) and Dalmatia. Rome had a secret 1902 pact with France, effectively nullifying its part in the Triple Alliance; Italy secretly agreed with France to remain neutral if the latter was attacked by Germany.At the start of hostilities, Italy refused to commit troops, arguing that the Triple Alliance was defensive and that Austria-Hungary was an aggressor. The Austro-Hungarian government began negotiations to secure Italian neutrality, offering the French colony of Tunisia in return. The Allies made a counter-offer in which Italy would receive the Southern Tyrol, Austrian Littoral and territory on the Dalmatian coast after the defeat of Austria-Hungary. This was formalised by the Treaty of London. Further encouraged by the Allied invasion of Turkey in April 1915, Italy joined the Triple Entente and declared war on Austria-Hungary on 23 May. Fifteen months later, Italy declared war on Germany.
The Italians had numerical superiority, but this advantage was lost, not only because of the difficult terrain in which the fighting took place, but also because of the strategies and tactics employed. Field Marshal Luigi Cadorna, a staunch proponent of the frontal assault, had dreams of breaking into the Slovenian plateau, taking Ljubljana and threatening Vienna.
On the Trentino front, the Austro-Hungarians took advantage of the mountainous terrain, which favoured the defender. After an initial strategic retreat, the front remained largely unchanged, while Austro-Hungarian Kaiserjäger, Kaiserschützen and Standschützen engaged Italian Alpini in bitter hand-to-hand combat throughout the summer. In the Alpine and Dolomite fronts, the main battle line led through rock and ice and often to an altitude of over 3000m. The soldiers were threatened not only by the enemy but especially in winter by the forces of nature and the difficult supply. The fighting led to the formation of special units with mountain guides and new combat tactics. The Austro-Hungarians counterattacked in the Altopiano of Asiago, towards Verona and Padua, in the spring of 1916 (Strafexpedition), but made little progress and were defeated by the Italians.
Beginning in 1915, the Italians under Cadorna mounted eleven offensives on the Isonzo front along the Isonzo (Soča) River, northeast of Trieste. Of these eleven offensives, five were won by Italy, three remained inconclusive, and the other three were repelled by the Austro-Hungarians, who held the higher ground. In the summer of 1916, after the Battle of Doberdò, the Italians captured the town of Gorizia. After this victory, the front remained static for over a year, despite several Italian offensives, centred on the Banjšice and Karst Plateau east of Gorizia.
The Central Powers launched a crushing offensive on 26 October 1917, spearheaded by the Germans, and achieved a victory at Caporetto (Kobarid). The Italian Army was routed and retreated more than 100 kilometres (62 mi) to reorganise. The new Italian chief of staff, Armando Diaz, ordered the Army to stop their retreat and defend the Monte Grappa summit, where fortified defences were constructed; the Italians repelled the Austro-Hungarian and German Army, and stabilised the front at the Piave River. Since the Italian Army had suffered heavy losses in the Battle of Caporetto, the Italian Government ordered conscription of the so-called '99 Boys (Ragazzi del '99): all males born in 1899 and prior, who were 18 years old or older. In 1918, the Austro-Hungarians failed to break through in a series of battles on the Piave and were finally decisively defeated in the Battle of Vittorio Veneto in October. On 1 November, the Italian Navy destroyed much of the Austro-Hungarian fleet stationed in Pula, preventing it from being handed over to the new State of Slovenes, Croats and Serbs. On 3 November, the Italians invaded Trieste from the sea. On the same day, the Armistice of Villa Giusti was signed. By mid-November 1918, the Italian military occupied the entire former Austrian Littoral and had seized control of the portion of Dalmatia that had been guaranteed to Italy by the London Pact. By the end of hostilities in November 1918, Admiral Enrico Millo declared himself Italy's Governor of Dalmatia. Austria-Hungary surrendered on 11 November 1918.
Romania had been allied with the Central Powers since 1882. When the war began, however, it declared its neutrality, arguing that because Austria-Hungary had declared war on Serbia, Romania was under no obligation to join the war. On 4 August 1916, Romania and the Entente signed the Political Treaty and Military Convention, that established the parameters of Romania's participation in the war. In return, it received the Allies' formal sanction for Transylvania, Banat and other territories of Austria-Hungary to be annexed to Romania. The action had large popular support. On 27 August 1916, the Romanian Army launched an attack against Austria-Hungary, with limited Russian support. The Romanian offensive was initially successful in Transylvania, but a Central Powers counterattack drove them back. As a result of the Battle of Bucharest, the Central Powers occupied Bucharest on 6 December 1916. Fighting in Moldova continued in 1917, but Russian withdrawal from the war in late 1917 as a result of the October Revolution meant that Romania was forced to sign an armistice with the Central Powers on 9 December 1917.
In January 1918, Romanian forces established control over Bessarabia as the Russian Army abandoned the province. Although a treaty was signed by the Romanian and Bolshevik Russian governments following talks between 5 and 9 March 1918 on the withdrawal of Romanian forces from Bessarabia within two months, on 27 March 1918 Romania formally attached Bessarabia, inhabited by a Romanian majority, to its territory, based on a resolution passed by the local assembly of that territory on its unification with Romania.
Romania officially made peace with the Central Powers by signing the Treaty of Bucharest on 7 May 1918. Under the treaty, Romania was obliged to end the war with the Central Powers and make small territorial concessions to Austria-Hungary, ceding control of some passes in the Carpathian Mountains, and to grant oil concessions to Germany. In exchange, the Central Powers recognised the sovereignty of Romania over Bessarabia. The treaty was renounced in October 1918 by the Alexandru Marghiloman government, and Romania nominally re-entered the war on 10 November 1918 against the Central Powers. The next day, the Treaty of Bucharest was nullified by the terms of the Armistice of Compiègne. Total Romanian deaths from 1914 to 1918, military and civilian, within contemporary borders, were estimated at 748,000.
Russian plans for the start of the war called for simultaneous invasions of Austrian Galicia and East Prussia. Although Russia's initial advance into Galicia was largely successful, it was driven back from East Prussia by Hindenburg and Ludendorff at the battles of Tannenberg and the Masurian Lakes in August and September 1914. Russia's less developed industrial base and ineffective military leadership were instrumental in the events that unfolded. By the spring of 1915, the Russians had retreated from Galicia, and, in May, the Central Powers achieved a remarkable breakthrough on Poland's southern frontiers with their Gorlice–Tarnów Offensive. On 5 August, they captured Warsaw and forced the Russians to withdraw from Poland.
Despite Russia's success in the June 1916 Brusilov Offensive against the Austrians in eastern Galicia, the offensive was undermined by the reluctance of other Russian generals to commit their forces to support the victory. Allied and Russian forces were revived only briefly by Romania's entry into the war on 27 August, as Romania was rapidly defeated by a Central Powers offensive. Meanwhile, unrest grew in Russia as the Tsar remained at the front. The increasingly incompetent rule of Empress Alexandra drew protests and resulted in the murder of her favourite, Rasputin, at the end of 1916.
In March 1917, demonstrations in Petrograd culminated in the abdication of Tsar Nicholas II and the appointment of a weak Provisional Government, which shared power with the Petrograd Soviet socialists. This arrangement led to confusion and chaos both at the front and at home. The army became increasingly ineffective.
Following the Tsar's abdication, Vladimir Lenin—with the help of the German government—was ushered by train from Switzerland into Russia 16 April 1917. Discontent and the weaknesses of the Provisional Government led to a rise in the popularity of the Bolshevik Party, led by Lenin, which demanded an immediate end to the war. The Revolution of November was followed in December by an armistice and negotiations with Germany. At first, the Bolsheviks refused the German terms, but when German troops began marching across Ukraine unopposed, the new government acceded to the Treaty of Brest-Litovsk on 3 March 1918. The treaty ceded vast territories, including Finland, the Baltic provinces, parts of Poland and Ukraine to the Central Powers. Despite this enormous German success, the manpower required by the Germans to occupy the captured territory may have contributed to the failure of their Spring Offensive, and secured relatively little food or other materiel for the Central Powers war effort.
With the adoption of the Treaty of Brest-Litovsk, the Entente no longer existed. The Allied powers led a small-scale invasion of Russia, partly to stop Germany from exploiting Russian resources, and to a lesser extent, to support the "Whites" (as opposed to the "Reds") in the Russian Civil War. Allied troops landed in Arkhangelsk and in Vladivostok as part of the North Russia Intervention.
The Czechoslovak Legion fought on the side of the Entente. Its goal was to win support for the independence of Czechoslovakia. The Legion in Russia was established in September 1914, in December 1917 in France (including volunteers from America) and in April 1918 in Italy. Czechoslovak Legion troops defeated the Austro-Hungarian army at the Ukrainian village of Zborov, in July 1917. After this success, the number of Czechoslovak legionaries increased, as well as Czechoslovak military power. In the Battle of Bakhmach, the Legion defeated the Germans and forced them to make a truce.
In Russia, they were heavily involved in the Russian Civil War, siding with the Whites against the Bolsheviks, at times controlling most of the Trans-Siberian railway and conquering all the major cities of Siberia. The presence of the Czechoslovak Legion near Yekaterinburg appears to have been one of the motivations for the Bolshevik execution of the Tsar and his family in July 1918. Legionaries arrived less than a week afterwards and captured the city. Because Russia's European ports were not safe, the corps was evacuated by a long detour via the port of Vladivostok. The last transport was the American ship Heffron in September 1920.
Central Powers peace overtures
On 12 December 1916, after ten brutal months of the Battle of Verdun and a successful offensive against Romania, Germany attempted to negotiate a peace with the Allies. However, this attempt was rejected out of hand as a "duplicitous war ruse".
Soon after, the US president, Woodrow Wilson, attempted to intervene as a peacemaker, asking in a note for both sides to state their demands. Lloyd George's War Cabinet considered the German offer to be a ploy to create divisions amongst the Allies. After initial outrage and much deliberation, they took Wilson's note as a separate effort, signalling that the United States was on the verge of entering the war against Germany following the "submarine outrages". While the Allies debated a response to Wilson's offer, the Germans chose to rebuff it in favour of "a direct exchange of views". Learning of the German response, the Allied governments were free to make clear demands in their response of 14 January. They sought restoration of damages, the evacuation of occupied territories, reparations for France, Russia and Romania, and a recognition of the principle of nationalities. This included the liberation of Italians, Slavs, Romanians, Czecho-Slovaks, and the creation of a "free and united Poland". On the question of security, the Allies sought guarantees that would prevent or limit future wars, complete with sanctions, as a condition of any peace settlement. The negotiations failed and the Entente powers rejected the German offer on the grounds that Germany had not put forward any specific proposals.
Major developments 1917–1918
The United States enters the war; April 1917
The United States was a major supplier of war materiel to the Allies but remained neutral in 1914; many opposed the idea of involvement in "foreign wars", while German Americans made up over 10% of the total population in 1913. On 7 May 1915, the British passenger liner RMS Lusitania was sunk by a German submarine, killing nearly 1,200, including 128 Americans. President Woodrow Wilson demanded an apology and warned the United States would not tolerate unrestricted submarine warfare but refused to be drawn into the war. When more Americans died after the sinking of SS Arabic in August, Bethman-Hollweg ordered an end to such attacks and the affair blew over. It led to a wider discussion over the morality of neutrality, a position summarised by former president Theodore Roosevelt, who denounced the idea of "setting a spiritual example [to others] by sitting idle, uttering cheap platitudes and picking up their trade". However, this remained a minority view and Wilson was narrowly re-elected as President in 1916, campaigning on the slogan "he kept us out of war".
By the end of 1916, the British naval blockade was causing serious shortages in Germany and Wilhelm approved the resumption of unrestricted submarine warfare [p] on 1 February 1917. While the German government recognised this action was likely to bring America into the war, the navy claimed they could starve Britain into submission in less than six months. The military position also appeared stable, at least for the foreseeable future. Despite heavy losses at Verdun and the Somme during 1916, withdrawal to the newly created Hindenburg Line would enable the Westheer to conserve its troops, while it was clear Russia was on the brink of revolution. The combination meant Germany was willing to gamble it could force the Allies to make peace before the US could intervene in any meaningful way.
Although Wilson responded by severing diplomatic relations on 2 February, he was reluctant to start hostilities without overwhelming public support and delayed any military response. On 24 February, he was presented with the Zimmermann Telegram; drafted in January by German Foreign Secretary Arthur Zimmermann, it was intercepted and decoded by British intelligence, who shared it with their American counterparts. Already financing Russian Bolsheviks and anti-British Irish nationalists, Zimmermann hoped to exploit nationalist feelings in Mexico caused by American incursions during the Pancho Villa Expedition. He promised President Carranza support for a war against the United States and help in recovering Texas, New Mexico, and Arizona, although this offer was promptly rejected.
Publication of the telegram on 1 March caused an upsurge in support for war, but did not eliminate opposition to it, while public fury quickly subsided. The most significant factor in creating the overwhelming majority Wilson needed was the German submarine offensive, which not only cost American lives, but paralysed trade as ships were reluctant to put to sea. This caused food shortages in cities along the East Coast and on 22 March, Congress approved the arming of merchant ships. Now committed to war, in his speech to Congress on 2 April, Wilson presented it as a crusade "against human greed and folly, against Germany, and for justice, peace and civilisation". On 6 April, Congress declared war on Germany, although it did so as an "Associated Power", rather than a formal ally. The US also remained outside the Pact of London and was at war with Germany, not the other Central Powers.
The United States Navy sent a battleship group to Scapa Flow to join the Grand Fleet, as well providing convoy escorts. In April 1917, the United States Army had fewer than 300,000 men, including National Guard units, compared to British and French armies of 4.1 and 8.3 million respectively. The Selective Service Act of 1917 drafted 2.8 million men, although training and equipping such numbers was a huge logistical challenge. By June 1918, over 667,000 members of the American Expeditionary Forces, or AEF, had been transported to France, a figure which reached 2 million by the end of November. However, their arrival exposed weaknesses in American tactical doctrine, which was based on pre-1914 principles, a world away from the Combined arms approach used by the French and British in 1918. US commanders were initially slow to accept such ideas, limiting their effectiveness and leading to heavy casualties; it was not until the last month of the war that these failings were rectified.
Despite his conviction Germany must be defeated, Wilson went to war primarily to ensure the US would play a leading role in shaping the peace. This meant preserving independence of action and required the AEF to operate as a separate military force, rather than being absorbed into British or French units as his Allies wanted. He was strongly supported in this by AEF commander General John J. Pershing, a proponent of pre-1914 "open warfare" who considered the French and British emphasis on artillery as misguided and incompatible with American "offensive spirit". Much to the frustration of his Allies, who had suffered heavy losses in 1917, he insisted on retaining control of American troops and refused to commit them to the front line until able to operate as independent units. As a result, the first significant US involvement was the Meuse–Argonne offensive in late September 1918.
Nivelle Offensive and French Army mutinies
The British naval blockade began to have a serious impact on Germany. In response, in February 1917, the German General Staff convinced Chancellor Theobald von Bethmann-Hollweg to declare unrestricted submarine warfare, with the goal of starving Britain out of the war. German planners estimated that unrestricted submarine warfare would cost Britain a monthly shipping loss of 600,000 tons. The General Staff acknowledged that the policy would almost certainly bring the United States into the conflict, but calculated that British shipping losses would be so high that they would be forced to sue for peace after five to six months, before American intervention could have an effect. Tonnage sunk rose above 500,000 tons per month from February to July. It peaked at 860,000 tons in April. After July, the newly re-introduced convoy system became effective in reducing the U-boat threat. Britain was safe from starvation, while German industrial output fell, and the United States joined the war far earlier than Germany had anticipated.
On 3 May 1917, during the Nivelle Offensive, the French 2nd Colonial Division, veterans of the Battle of Verdun, refused orders, arriving drunk and without their weapons. Their officers lacked the means to punish an entire division, and harsh measures were not immediately implemented. The French Army Mutinies eventually spread to a further 54 French divisions, and 20,000 men deserted. However, appeals to patriotism and duty, as well as mass arrests and trials, encouraged the soldiers to return to defend their trenches, although the French soldiers refused to participate in further offensive action. Robert Nivelle was removed from command by 15 May, replaced by General Philippe Pétain, who suspended bloody large-scale attacks.
The victory of the Central Powers at the Battle of Caporetto led the Allies to convene the Rapallo Conference at which they formed the Supreme War Council to co-ordinate planning. Previously, British and French armies had operated under separate commands.
In December, the Central Powers signed an armistice with Russia, thus freeing large numbers of German troops for use in the west. With German reinforcements and new American troops pouring in, the outcome was to be decided on the Western Front. The Central Powers knew that they could not win a protracted war, but they held high hopes for success based on a final quick offensive. Furthermore, both sides became increasingly fearful of social unrest and revolution in Europe. Thus, both sides urgently sought a decisive victory.
In 1917, Emperor Charles I of Austria secretly attempted separate peace negotiations with Clemenceau, through his wife's brother Sixtus in Belgium as an intermediary, without the knowledge of Germany. Italy opposed the proposals. When the negotiations failed, his attempt was revealed to Germany, resulting in a diplomatic catastrophe.
Ottoman Empire conflict, 1917–1918
In March and April 1917, at the First and Second Battles of Gaza, German and Ottoman forces stopped the advance of the Egyptian Expeditionary Force, which had begun in August 1916 at the Battle of Romani. At the end of October, the Sinai and Palestine Campaign resumed, when General Edmund Allenby's XXth Corps, XXI Corps and Desert Mounted Corps won the Battle of Beersheba. Two Ottoman armies were defeated a few weeks later at the Battle of Mughar Ridge and, early in December, Jerusalem was captured following another Ottoman defeat at the Battle of Jerusalem. About this time, Friedrich Freiherr Kress von Kressenstein was relieved of his duties as the Eighth Army's commander, replaced by Djevad Pasha, and a few months later the commander of the Ottoman Army in Palestine, Erich von Falkenhayn, was replaced by Otto Liman von Sanders.
In early 1918, the front line was extended and the Jordan Valley was occupied, following the First Transjordan and the Second Transjordan attacks by British Empire forces in March and April 1918. In March, most of the Egyptian Expeditionary Force's British infantry and Yeomanry cavalry were sent to the Western Front as a consequence of the Spring Offensive. They were replaced by Indian Army units. During several months of reorganisation and training of the summer, a number of attacks were carried out on sections of the Ottoman front line. These pushed the front line north to more advantageous positions for the Entente in preparation for an attack and to acclimatise the newly arrived Indian Army infantry. It was not until the middle of September that the integrated force was ready for large-scale operations.
The reorganised Egyptian Expeditionary Force, with an additional mounted division, broke Ottoman forces at the Battle of Megiddo in September 1918. In two days the British and Indian infantry, supported by a creeping barrage, broke the Ottoman front line and captured the headquarters of the Eighth Army (Ottoman Empire) at Tulkarm, the continuous trench lines at Tabsor, Arara, and the Seventh Army (Ottoman Empire) headquarters at Nablus. The Desert Mounted Corps rode through the break in the front line created by the infantry. During virtually continuous operations by Australian Light Horse, British mounted Yeomanry, Indian Lancers, and New Zealand Mounted Rifle brigades in the Jezreel Valley, they captured Nazareth, Afulah and Beisan, Jenin, along with Haifa on the Mediterranean coast and Daraa east of the Jordan River on the Hejaz railway. Samakh and Tiberias on the Sea of Galilee were captured on the way northwards to Damascus. Meanwhile, Chaytor's Force of Australian light horse, New Zealand mounted rifles, Indian, British West Indies and Jewish infantry captured the crossings of the Jordan River, Es Salt, Amman and at Ziza most of the Fourth Army (Ottoman Empire). The Armistice of Mudros, signed at the end of October, ended hostilities with the Ottoman Empire when fighting was continuing north of Aleppo.
15 August 1917: Peace offer by the Pope
- No annexations
- No indemnities, except to compensate for severe war damage in Belgium and parts of France and of Serbia
- A solution to the problems of Alsace-Lorraine, Trentino and Trieste
- Restoration of the Kingdom of Poland
- Germany to pull out of Belgium and France
- Germany's overseas colonies to be returned to Germany
- General disarmament
- A Supreme Court of arbitration to settle future disputes between nations
- The freedom of the seas
- Abolish all retaliatory economic conflicts
- No point in ordering reparations, because so much damage had been caused to all belligerents
German Spring Offensive of 1918
Ludendorff drew up plans (codenamed Operation Michael) for the 1918 offensive on the Western Front. The Spring Offensive sought to divide the British and French forces with a series of feints and advances. The German leadership hoped to end the war before significant US forces arrived. The operation commenced on 21 March 1918 with an attack on British forces near Saint-Quentin. German forces achieved an unprecedented advance of 60 kilometres (37 mi).
British and French trenches were penetrated using novel infiltration tactics, also named Hutier tactics after General Oskar von Hutier, by specially trained units called stormtroopers. Previously, attacks had been characterised by long artillery bombardments and massed assaults. In the Spring Offensive of 1918, however, Ludendorff used artillery only briefly and infiltrated small groups of infantry at weak points. They attacked command and logistics areas and bypassed points of serious resistance. More heavily armed infantry then destroyed these isolated positions. This German success relied greatly on the element of surprise.
The front moved to within 120 kilometres (75 mi) of Paris. Three heavy Krupp railway guns fired 183 shells on the capital, causing many Parisians to flee. The initial offensive was so successful that Kaiser Wilhelm II declared 24 March a national holiday. Many Germans thought victory was near. After heavy fighting, however, the offensive was halted. Lacking tanks or motorised artillery, the Germans were unable to consolidate their gains. The problems of re-supply were also exacerbated by increasing distances that now stretched over terrain that was shell-torn and often impassable to traffic.
Following Operation Michael, Germany launched Operation Georgette against the northern English Channel ports. The Allies halted the drive after limited territorial gains by Germany. The German Army to the south then conducted Operations Blücher and Yorck, pushing broadly towards Paris. Germany launched Operation Marne (Second Battle of the Marne) on 15 July, in an attempt to encircle Reims. The resulting counter-attack, which started the Hundred Days Offensive, marked the first successful Allied offensive of the war. By 20 July, the Germans had retreated across the Marne to their starting lines, having achieved little, and the German Army never regained the initiative. German casualties between March and April 1918 were 270,000, including many highly trained stormtroopers.
Meanwhile, Germany was falling apart at home. Anti-war marches became frequent and morale in the army fell. Industrial output was half the 1913 levels.
New states enter the war
In the late spring of 1918, three new states were formed in the South Caucasus: the First Republic of Armenia, the Azerbaijan Democratic Republic, and the Democratic Republic of Georgia, which declared their independence from the Russian Empire. Two other minor entities were established, the Centrocaspian Dictatorship and South West Caucasian Republic (the former was liquidated by Azerbaijan in the autumn of 1918 and the latter by a joint Armenian-British task force in early 1919). With the withdrawal of the Russian armies from the Caucasus front in the winter of 1917–18, the three major republics braced for an imminent Ottoman advance, which commenced in the early months of 1918. Solidarity was briefly maintained when the Transcaucasian Federative Republic was created in the spring of 1918, but this collapsed in May when the Georgians asked for and received protection from Germany and the Azerbaijanis concluded a treaty with the Ottoman Empire that was more akin to a military alliance. Armenia was left to fend for itself and struggled for five months against the threat of a full-fledged occupation by the Ottoman Turks before defeating them at the Battle of Sardarabad.
Allied victory: summer 1918 onwards
Hundred Days Offensive
The Allied counteroffensive, known as the Hundred Days Offensive, began on 8 August 1918, with the Battle of Amiens. The battle involved over 400 tanks and 120,000 British, Dominion, and French troops, and by the end of its first day a gap 24 kilometres (15 mi) long had been created in the German lines. The defenders displayed a marked collapse in morale, causing Ludendorff to refer to this day as the "Black Day of the German army". After an advance as far as 23 kilometres (14 mi), German resistance stiffened, and the battle was concluded on 12 August.
Rather than continuing the Amiens battle past the point of initial success, as had been done so many times in the past, the Allies shifted attention elsewhere. Allied leaders had now realised that to continue an attack after resistance had hardened was a waste of lives, and it was better to turn a line than to try to roll over it. They began to undertake attacks in quick order to take advantage of successful advances on the flanks, then broke them off when each attack lost its initial impetus.
The day after the Offensive began, Ludendorff said: "We cannot win the war any more, but we must not lose it either." On 11 August he offered his resignation to the Kaiser, who refused it, replying, "I see that we must strike a balance. We have nearly reached the limit of our powers of resistance. The war must be ended." On 13 August, at Spa, Hindenburg, Ludendorff, the Chancellor, and Foreign Minister Hintz agreed that the war could not be ended militarily and, on the following day, the German Crown Council decided that victory in the field was now most improbable. Austria and Hungary warned that they could continue the war only until December, and Ludendorff recommended immediate peace negotiations. Prince Rupprecht warned Prince Maximilian of Baden: "Our military situation has deteriorated so rapidly that I no longer believe we can hold out over the winter; it is even possible that a catastrophe will come earlier."
Battle of Albert
British and Dominion forces launched the next phase of the campaign with the Battle of Albert on 21 August. The assault was widened by French and then further British forces in the following days. During the last week of August, the Allied pressure along a 110-kilometre (68 mi) front against the enemy was heavy and unrelenting. From German accounts, "Each day was spent in bloody fighting against an ever and again on-storming enemy, and nights passed without sleep in retirements to new lines."
Faced with these advances, on 2 September the German Oberste Heeresleitung ("Supreme Army Command") issued orders to withdraw in the south to the Hindenburg Line. This ceded without a fight the salient seized the previous April. According to Ludendorff, "We had to admit the necessity ... to withdraw the entire front from the Scarpe to the Vesle."[page needed] In nearly four weeks of fighting beginning on 8 August, over 100,000 German prisoners were taken. The German High Command realised that the war was lost and made attempts to reach a satisfactory end. On 10 September Hindenburg urged peace moves to Emperor Charles of Austria, and Germany appealed to the Netherlands for mediation. On 14 September Austria sent a note to all belligerents and neutrals suggesting a meeting for peace talks on neutral soil, and on 15 September Germany made a peace offer to Belgium. Both peace offers were rejected.
Allied advance to the Hindenburg Line
In September the Allies advanced to the Hindenburg Line in the north and centre. The Germans continued to fight strong rear-guard actions and launched numerous counterattacks, but positions and outposts of the Line continued to fall, with the BEF alone taking 30,441 prisoners in the last week of September. On 24 September an assault by both the British and French came within 3 kilometres (2 mi) of St. Quentin. The Germans had now retreated to positions along or behind the Hindenburg Line. That same day, Supreme Army Command informed the leaders in Berlin that armistice talks were inevitable.
The final assault on the Hindenburg Line began with the Meuse-Argonne Offensive, launched by French and American troops on 26 September. The following week, co-operating French and American units broke through in Champagne at the Battle of Blanc Mont Ridge, forcing the Germans off the commanding heights, and closing towards the Belgian frontier. On 8 October the line was pierced again by British and Dominion troops at the Battle of Cambrai.}} The German army had to shorten its front and use the Dutch frontier as an anchor to fight rear-guard actions as it fell back towards Germany.
When Bulgaria signed a separate armistice on 29 September, Ludendorff, having been under great stress for months, suffered something similar to a breakdown. It was evident that Germany could no longer mount a successful defence. The collapse of the Balkans meant that Germany was about to lose its main supplies of oil and food. Its reserves had been used up, even as US troops kept arriving at the rate of 10,000 per day. The Americans supplied more than 80% of Allied oil during the war, and there was no shortage.
German Revolution 1918–1919
News of Germany's impending military defeat spread throughout the German armed forces. The threat of mutiny was rife. Admiral Reinhard Scheer and Ludendorff decided to launch a last attempt to restore the "valour" of the German Navy.
In northern Germany, the German Revolution of 1918–1919 began at the end of October 1918. Units of the German Navy refused to set sail for a last, large-scale operation in a war they believed to be as good as lost, initiating the uprising. The sailors' revolt, which then ensued in the naval ports of Wilhelmshaven and Kiel, spread across the whole country within days and led to the proclamation of a republic on 9 November 1918, shortly thereafter to the abdication of Kaiser Wilhelm II, and to German surrender.
New German government surrenders
With the military faltering and with widespread loss of confidence in the Kaiser leading to his abdication and fleeing of the country, Germany moved towards surrender. Prince Maximilian of Baden took charge of a new government on 3 October as Chancellor of Germany to negotiate with the Allies. Negotiations with President Wilson began immediately, in the hope that he would offer better terms than the British and French. Wilson demanded a constitutional monarchy and parliamentary control over the German military. There was no resistance when the Social Democrat Philipp Scheidemann on 9 November declared Germany to be a republic. The Kaiser, kings and other hereditary rulers all were removed from power and Wilhelm fled to exile in the Netherlands. It was the end of Imperial Germany; a new Germany had been born as the Weimar Republic.
Armistices and capitulations
The collapse of the Central Powers came swiftly. Bulgaria was the first to sign an armistice, the Armistice of Salonica on 29 September 1918. German Emperor Wilhelm II in his telegram to Bulgarian Tsar Ferdinand I described situation: "Disgraceful! 62,000 Serbs decided the war!". On the same day, the German Supreme Army Command informed Kaiser Wilhelm II and the Imperial Chancellor Count Georg von Hertling, that the military situation facing Germany was hopeless.
On 24 October, the Italians began a push that rapidly recovered territory lost after the Battle of Caporetto. This culminated in the Battle of Vittorio Veneto, which marked the end of the Austro-Hungarian Army as an effective fighting force. The offensive also triggered the disintegration of the Austro-Hungarian Empire. During the last week of October, declarations of independence were made in Budapest, Prague, and Zagreb. On 29 October, the imperial authorities asked Italy for an armistice, but the Italians continued advancing, reaching Trento, Udine, and Trieste. On 3 November, Austria-Hungary sent a flag of truce to ask for an armistice (Armistice of Villa Giusti). The terms, arranged by telegraph with the Allied Authorities in Paris, were communicated to the Austrian commander and accepted. The Armistice with Austria was signed in the Villa Giusti, near Padua, on 3 November. Austria and Hungary signed separate armistices following the overthrow of the Habsburg Monarchy. In the following days, the Italian Army occupied Innsbruck and all Tyrol with over 20,000 soldiers.
On 30 October, the Ottoman Empire capitulated, signing the Armistice of Mudros.
On 11 November, at 5:00 am, an armistice with Germany was signed in a railroad carriage at Compiègne. At 11 am on 11 November 1918—"the eleventh hour of the eleventh day of the eleventh month"—a ceasefire came into effect. During the six hours between the signing of the armistice and its taking effect, opposing armies on the Western Front began to withdraw from their positions, but fighting continued along many areas of the front, as commanders wanted to capture territory before the war ended. The occupation of the Rhineland took place following the Armistice. The occupying armies consisted of American, Belgian, British and French forces.
In November 1918, the Allies had ample supplies of men and materiel to invade Germany. Yet at the time of the armistice, no Allied force had crossed the German frontier, the Western Front was still some 720 kilometres (450 mi) from Berlin, and the Kaiser's armies had retreated from the battlefield in good order. These factors enabled Hindenburg and other senior German leaders to spread the story that their armies had not really been defeated. This resulted in the stab-in-the-back legend, which attributed Germany's defeat not to its inability to continue fighting (even though up to a million soldiers were suffering from the 1918 flu pandemic and unfit to fight), but to the public's failure to respond to its "patriotic calling" and the supposed intentional sabotage of the war effort, particularly by Jews, Socialists, and Bolsheviks.
The Allies had much more potential wealth they could spend on the war. One estimate (using 1913 US dollars) is that the Allies spent $58 billion on the war and the Central Powers only $25 billion. Among the Allies, the UK spent $21 billion and the US$17 billion; among the Central Powers Germany spent $20 billion.
In the aftermath of the war, four empires disappeared: the German, Austro-Hungarian, Ottoman, and Russian.[q] Numerous nations regained their former independence, and new ones were created. Four dynasties, together with their ancillary aristocracies, fell as a result of the war: the Romanovs, the Hohenzollerns, the Habsburgs, and the Ottomans. Belgium and Serbia were badly damaged, as was France, with 1.4 million soldiers dead, not counting other casualties. Germany and Russia were similarly affected.
Formal end of the war
A formal state of war between the two sides persisted for another seven months, until the signing of the Treaty of Versailles with Germany on 28 June 1919. The United States Senate did not ratify the treaty despite public support for it, and did not formally end its involvement in the war until the Knox–Porter Resolution was signed on 2 July 1921 by President Warren G. Harding. For the United Kingdom and the British Empire, the state of war ceased under the provisions of the Termination of the Present War (Definition) Act 1918 with respect to:
After the Treaty of Versailles, treaties with Austria, Hungary, Bulgaria, and the Ottoman Empire were signed. However, the negotiation of the treaty with the Ottoman Empire was followed by strife, and a final peace treaty between the Allied Powers and the country that would shortly become the Republic of Turkey was not signed until 24 July 1923, at Lausanne.
Some war memorials date the end of the war as being when the Versailles Treaty was signed in 1919, which was when many of the troops serving abroad finally returned home; by contrast, most commemorations of the war's end concentrate on the armistice of 11 November 1918. Legally, the formal peace treaties were not complete until the last, the Treaty of Lausanne, was signed. Under its terms, the Allied forces left Constantinople on 23 August 1923.
Peace treaties and national boundaries
After the war, there grew a certain amount of academic focus on the causes of war and on the elements that could make peace flourish. In part, these led to the institutionalization of peace and conflict studies, security studies and International Relations (IR) in general. The Paris Peace Conference imposed a series of peace treaties on the Central Powers officially ending the war. The 1919 Treaty of Versailles dealt with Germany and, building on Wilson's 14th point, brought into being the League of Nations on 28 June 1919.
The Central Powers had to acknowledge responsibility for "all the loss and damage to which the Allied and Associated Governments and their nationals have been subjected as a consequence of the war imposed upon them by" their aggression. In the Treaty of Versailles, this statement was Article 231. This article became known as the War Guilt clause as the majority of Germans felt humiliated and resentful. Overall the Germans felt they had been unjustly dealt with by what they called the "diktat of Versailles". German historian Hagen Schulze said the Treaty placed Germany "under legal sanctions, deprived of military power, economically ruined, and politically humiliated." Belgian historian Laurence Van Ypersele emphasises the central role played by memory of the war and the Versailles Treaty in German politics in the 1920s and 1930s:
Active denial of war guilt in Germany and German resentment at both reparations and continued Allied occupation of the Rhineland made widespread revision of the meaning and memory of the war problematic. The legend of the "stab in the back" and the wish to revise the "Versailles diktat", and the belief in an international threat aimed at the elimination of the German nation persisted at the heart of German politics. Even a man of peace such as [Gustav] Stresemann publicly rejected German guilt. As for the Nazis, they waved the banners of domestic treason and international conspiracy in an attempt to galvanise the German nation into a spirit of revenge. Like a Fascist Italy, Nazi Germany sought to redirect the memory of the war to the benefit of its own policies.
Meanwhile, new nations liberated from German rule viewed the treaty as recognition of wrongs committed against small nations by much larger aggressive neighbours. The Peace Conference required all the defeated powers to pay reparations for all the damage done to civilians. However, owing to economic difficulties and Germany being the only defeated power with an intact economy, the burden fell largely on Germany.
Austria-Hungary was partitioned into several successor states, including Austria, Hungary, Czechoslovakia, and Yugoslavia, largely but not entirely along ethnic lines. Transylvania was shifted from Hungary to Greater Romania. The details were contained in the Treaty of Saint-Germain and the Treaty of Trianon. As a result of the Treaty of Trianon, 3.3 million Hungarians came under foreign rule. Although the Hungarians made up approximately 54% of the population of the pre-war Kingdom of Hungary (according to the 1910 census), only 32% of its territory was left to Hungary. Between 1920 and 1924, 354,000 Hungarians fled former Hungarian territories attached to Romania, Czechoslovakia, and Yugoslavia.
The Russian Empire, which had withdrawn from the war in 1917 after the October Revolution, lost much of its western frontier as the newly independent nations of Estonia, Finland, Latvia, Lithuania, and Poland were carved from it. Romania took control of Bessarabia in April 1918.
The Ottoman Empire disintegrated, with much of its Levant territory awarded to various Allied powers as protectorates. The Turkish core in Anatolia was reorganised as the Republic of Turkey. The Ottoman Empire was to be partitioned by the Treaty of Sèvres of 1920. This treaty was never ratified by the Sultan and was rejected by the Turkish National Movement, leading to the victorious Turkish War of Independence and the much less stringent 1923 Treaty of Lausanne.
After 123 years, Poland re-emerged as an independent country. The Kingdom of Serbia and its dynasty, as a "minor Entente nation" and the country with the most casualties per capita, became the backbone of a new multinational state, the Kingdom of Serbs, Croats and Slovenes, later renamed Yugoslavia. Czechoslovakia, combining the Kingdom of Bohemia with parts of the Kingdom of Hungary, became a new nation. Russia became the Soviet Union and lost Finland, Estonia, Lithuania, and Latvia, which became independent countries. The Ottoman Empire was soon replaced by Turkey and several other countries in the Middle East.
In the British Empire, the war unleashed new forms of nationalism. In Australia and New Zealand, the Battle of Gallipoli became known as those nations' "Baptism of Fire". It was the first major war in which the newly established countries fought, and it was one of the first times that Australian troops fought as Australians, not just subjects of the British Crown. Anzac Day, commemorating the Australian and New Zealand Army Corps (ANZAC), celebrates this defining moment.
After the Battle of Vimy Ridge, where the Canadian divisions fought together for the first time as a single corps, Canadians began to refer to their country as a nation "forged from fire". Having succeeded on the same battleground where the "mother countries" had previously faltered, they were for the first time respected internationally for their own accomplishments. Canada entered the war as a Dominion of the British Empire and remained so, although it emerged with a greater measure of independence. When Britain declared war in 1914, the dominions were automatically at war; at the conclusion, Canada, Australia, New Zealand, and South Africa were individual signatories of the Treaty of Versailles.
Lobbying by Chaim Weizmann and fear that American Jews would encourage the United States to support Germany culminated in the British government's Balfour Declaration of 1917, endorsing creation of a Jewish homeland in Palestine. A total of more than 1,172,000 Jewish soldiers served in the Allied and Central Power forces in World War I, including 275,000 in Austria-Hungary and 450,000 in Tsarist Russia.
The establishment of the modern state of Israel and the roots of the continuing Israeli–Palestinian conflict are partially found in the unstable power dynamics of the Middle East that resulted from World War I. Before the end of the war, the Ottoman Empire had maintained a modest level of peace and stability throughout the Middle East. With the fall of the Ottoman government, power vacuums developed and conflicting claims to land and nationhood began to emerge. The political boundaries drawn by the victors of World War I were quickly imposed, sometimes after only cursory consultation with the local population. These continue to be problematic in the 21st-century struggles for national identity. While the dissolution of the Ottoman Empire at the end of World War I was pivotal in contributing to the modern political situation of the Middle East, including the Arab-Israeli conflict, the end of Ottoman rule also spawned lesser-known disputes over water and other natural resources.
The prestige of Germany and German things in Latin America remained high after the war but did not recover to its pre-war levels. Indeed, in Chile the war bought an end to a period of intense scientific and cultural influence writer Eduardo de la Barra scorningly called "the German bewitchment" (Spanish: el embrujamiento alemán).
Of the 60 million European military personnel who were mobilised from 1914 to 1918, 8 million were killed, 7 million were permanently disabled, and 15 million were seriously injured. Germany lost 15.1% of its active male population, Austria-Hungary lost 17.1%, and France lost 10.5%. France mobilised 7.8 million men, of which 1.4 million died and 3.2 million were injured. In Germany, civilian deaths were 474,000 higher than in peacetime, due in large part to food shortages and malnutrition that weakened resistance to disease. By the end of the war, starvation caused by famine had killed approximately 100,000 people in Lebanon. Between 5 and 10 million people died in the Russian famine of 1921. By 1922, there were between 4.5 million and 7 million homeless children in Russia as a result of nearly a decade of devastation from World War I, the Russian Civil War, and the subsequent famine of 1920–1922. Numerous anti-Soviet Russians fled the country after the Revolution; by the 1930s, the northern Chinese city of Harbin had 100,000 Russians. Thousands more emigrated to France, England, and the United States.
The Australian prime minister, Billy Hughes, wrote to the British prime minister, Lloyd George, "You have assured us that you cannot get better terms. I much regret it, and hope even now that some way may be found of securing agreement for demanding reparation commensurate with the tremendous sacrifices made by the British Empire and her Allies." Australia received £5,571,720 war reparations, but the direct cost of the war to Australia had been £376,993,052, and, by the mid-1930s, repatriation pensions, war gratuities, interest and sinking fund charges were £831,280,947. Of about 416,000 Australians who served, about 60,000 were killed and another 152,000 were wounded.
Diseases flourished in the chaotic wartime conditions. In 1914 alone, louse-borne epidemic typhus killed 200,000 in Serbia. From 1918 to 1922, Russia had about 25 million infections and 3 million deaths from epidemic typhus. In 1923, 13 million Russians contracted malaria, a sharp increase from the pre-war years. In addition, a major influenza epidemic spread around the world. Overall, the Spanish flu killed at least 17 million to 50 million people,  including an estimated 2.64 million Europeans and as many as 675,000 Americans. Moreover, between 1915 and 1926, an epidemic of encephalitis lethargica spread around the world affecting nearly five million people.
The social disruption and widespread violence of the Russian Revolution of 1917 and the ensuing Russian Civil War sparked more than 2,000 pogroms in the former Russian Empire, mostly in Ukraine. An estimated 60,000–200,000 civilian Jews were killed in the atrocities.
In the aftermath of World War I, Greece fought against Turkish nationalists led by Mustafa Kemal, a war that eventually resulted in a massive population exchange between the two countries under the Treaty of Lausanne. According to various sources, several hundred thousand Greeks died during this period, which was tied in with the Greek genocide.
World War I began as a clash of 20th-century technology and 19th-century tactics, with the inevitably large ensuing casualties. By the end of 1917, however, the major armies, now numbering millions of men, had modernised and were making use of telephone, wireless communication, armoured cars, tanks (especially with the advent of the first prototype tank, Little Willie), and aircraft. Infantry formations were reorganised, so that 100-man companies were no longer the main unit of manoeuvre; instead, squads of 10 or so men, under the command of a junior NCO, were favoured.
Artillery also underwent a revolution. In 1914, cannons were positioned in the front line and fired directly at their targets. By 1917, indirect fire with guns (as well as mortars and even machine guns) was commonplace, using new techniques for spotting and ranging, notably, aircraft and the often overlooked field telephone. Counter-battery missions became commonplace, also, and sound detection was used to locate enemy batteries.
Germany was far ahead of the Allies in using heavy indirect fire. The German Army employed 150 mm (6 in) and 210 mm (8 in) howitzers in 1914, when typical French and British guns were only 75 mm (3 in) and 105 mm (4 in). The British had a 6-inch (152 mm) howitzer, but it was so heavy it had to be hauled to the field in pieces and assembled. The Germans also fielded Austrian 305 mm (12 in) and 420 mm (17 in) guns and, even at the beginning of the war, had inventories of various calibres of Minenwerfer, which were ideally suited for trench warfare.
On 27 June 1917 the Germans used the biggest gun in the world, Batterie Pommern, nicknamed "Lange Max". This gun from Krupp was able to shoot 750 kg shells from Koekelare to Dunkirk, a distance of about 50 km (31 mi).
Much of the combat involved trench warfare, in which hundreds often died for each metre gained. Many of the deadliest battles in history occurred during World War I. Such battles include Ypres, the Marne, Cambrai, the Somme, Verdun, and Gallipoli. The Germans employed the Haber process of nitrogen fixation to provide their forces with a constant supply of gunpowder despite the British naval blockade. Artillery was responsible for the largest number of casualties and consumed vast quantities of explosives. The large number of head wounds caused by exploding shells and fragmentation forced the combatant nations to develop the modern steel helmet, led by the French, who introduced the Adrian helmet in 1915. It was quickly followed by the Brodie helmet, worn by British Imperial and US troops, and in 1916 by the distinctive German Stahlhelm, a design, with improvements, still in use today.
Gas! GAS! Quick, boys! – An ecstasy of fumbling,
Fitting the clumsy helmets just in time;
But someone still was yelling out and stumbling,
And flound'ring like a man in fire or lime ...
Dim, through the misty panes and thick green light,
As under a green sea, I saw him drowning.
The widespread use of chemical warfare was a distinguishing feature of the conflict. Gases used included chlorine, mustard gas and phosgene. Relatively few war casualties were caused by gas, as effective countermeasures to gas attacks were quickly created, such as gas masks. The use of chemical warfare and small-scale strategic bombing (as opposed to tactical bombing) were both outlawed by the Hague Conventions of 1899 and 1907, and both proved to be of limited effectiveness, though they captured the public imagination.
The most powerful land-based weapons were railway guns, weighing dozens of tons apiece. The German version were nicknamed Big Berthas, even though the namesake was not a railway gun. Germany developed the Paris Gun, able to bombard Paris from over 100 kilometres (62 mi), though shells were relatively light at 94 kilograms (210 lb).
Trenches, machine guns, air reconnaissance, barbed wire, and modern artillery with fragmentation shells helped bring the battle lines of World War I to a stalemate. The British and the French sought a solution with the creation of the tank and mechanised warfare. The British first tanks were used during the Battle of the Somme on 15 September 1916. Mechanical reliability was an issue, but the experiment proved its worth. Within a year, the British were fielding tanks by the hundreds, and they showed their potential during the Battle of Cambrai in November 1917, by breaking the Hindenburg Line, while combined arms teams captured 8,000 enemy soldiers and 100 guns. Meanwhile, the French introduced the first tanks with a rotating turret, the Renault FT, which became a decisive tool of the victory. The conflict also saw the introduction of light automatic weapons and submachine guns, such as the Lewis gun, the Browning Automatic Rifle, and the Bergmann MP18.
Another new weapon, the flamethrower, was first used by the German army and later adopted by other forces. Although not of high tactical value, the flamethrower was a powerful, demoralising weapon that caused terror on the battlefield.
Trench railways evolved to supply the enormous quantities of food, water, and ammunition required to support large numbers of soldiers in areas where conventional transportation systems had been destroyed. Internal combustion engines and improved traction systems for automobiles and trucks/lorries eventually rendered trench railways obsolete.
Areas taken in major attacks
On the Western Front, neither side made impressive gains in the first three years of the war with attacks at Verdun, the Somme, Passchendaele, and Cambrai—the exception was Nivelle's Offensive in which the German defence gave ground while mauling the attackers so badly that there were mutinies in the French Army. In 1918 the Germans smashed through the defence lines in three great attacks: Michael, on the Lys, and on the Aisne, which displayed the power of their new tactics. The Allies struck back at Soissons, which showed the Germans that they must return to the defensive, and at Amiens; tanks played a prominent role in both these assaults, as they had the year before at Cambrai.
The areas in the East were larger. The Germans did well at the First Masurian Lakes driving the invaders from East Prussia, and at Riga, which led the Russians to sue for peace. The Austro-Hungarians and Germans joined for a great success at Gorlice–Tarnów, which drove the Russians out of Poland. In a series of attacks along with the Bulgarians, they occupied Serbia, Albania, Montenegro and most of Romania. The Allies successes came later in Palestine, the beginning of the end for the Ottomans, in Macedonia, which drove the Bulgarians out of the war, and at Vittorio Veneto, the final blow for the Austro-Hungarians. The area occupied in the East by the Central powers on 11 November 1918 was 1,042,600 km2 (402,600 sq mi).
Germany deployed U-boats (submarines) after the war began. Alternating between restricted and unrestricted submarine warfare in the Atlantic, the Kaiserliche Marine employed them to deprive the British Isles of vital supplies. The deaths of British merchant sailors and the seeming invulnerability of U-boats led to the development of depth charges (1916), hydrophones (passive sonar, 1917), blimps, hunter-killer submarines (HMS R-1, 1917), forward-throwing anti-submarine weapons, and dipping hydrophones (the latter two both abandoned in 1918). To extend their operations, the Germans proposed supply submarines (1916). Most of these would be forgotten in the interwar period until World War II revived the need.
Fixed-wing aircraft were first used militarily by the Italians in Libya on 23 October 1911 during the Italo-Turkish War for reconnaissance, soon followed by the dropping of grenades and aerial photography the next year. By 1914, their military utility was obvious. They were initially used for reconnaissance and ground attack. To shoot down enemy planes, anti-aircraft guns and fighter aircraft were developed. Strategic bombers were created, principally by the Germans and British, though the former used Zeppelins as well. Towards the end of the conflict, aircraft carriers were used for the first time, with HMS Furious launching Sopwith Camels in a raid to destroy the Zeppelin hangars at Tønder in 1918.
Manned observation balloons, floating high above the trenches, were used as stationary reconnaissance platforms, reporting enemy movements and directing artillery. Balloons commonly had a crew of two, equipped with parachutes, so that if there was an enemy air attack the crew could parachute to safety. At the time, parachutes were too heavy to be used by pilots of aircraft (with their marginal power output), and smaller versions were not developed until the end of the war; they were also opposed by the British leadership, who feared they might promote cowardice.
Recognised for their value as observation platforms, balloons were important targets for enemy aircraft. To defend them against air attack, they were heavily protected by antiaircraft guns and patrolled by friendly aircraft; to attack them, unusual weapons such as air-to-air rockets were tried. Thus, the reconnaissance value of blimps and balloons contributed to the development of air-to-air combat between all types of aircraft, and to the trench stalemate, because it was impossible to move large numbers of troops undetected. The Germans conducted air raids on England during 1915 and 1916 with airships, hoping to damage British morale and cause aircraft to be diverted from the front lines, and indeed the resulting panic led to the diversion of several squadrons of fighters from France.
On 19 August 1915, the German submarine U-27 was sunk by the British Q-ship HMS Baralong. All German survivors were summarily executed by Baralong's crew on the orders of Lieutenant Godfrey Herbert, the captain of the ship. The shooting was reported to the media by American citizens who were on board the Nicosia, a British freighter loaded with war supplies, which was stopped by U-27 just minutes before the incident.
On 24 September, Baralong destroyed U-41, which was in the process of sinking the cargo ship Urbino. According to Karl Goetz, the submarine's commander, Baralong continued to fly the US flag after firing on U-41 and then rammed the lifeboat—carrying the German survivors, sinking it.
Torpedoing of HMHS Llandovery Castle
The Canadian hospital ship HMHS Llandovery Castle was torpedoed by the German submarine SM U-86 on 27 June 1918 in violation of international law. Only 24 of the 258 medical personnel, patients, and crew survived. Survivors reported that the U-boat surfaced and ran down the lifeboats, machine-gunning survivors in the water. The U-boat captain, Helmut Patzig, was charged with war crimes in Germany following the war, but escaped prosecution by going to the Free City of Danzig, beyond the jurisdiction of German courts.
Blockade of Germany
After the war, the German government claimed that approximately 763,000 German civilians died from starvation and disease during the war because of the Allied blockade. An academic study done in 1928 put the death toll at 424,000. Germany protested that the Allies had used starvation as a weapon of war. Sally Marks argued that the German accounts of a hunger blockade are a "myth," as Germany did not face the starvation level of Belgium and the regions of Poland and northern France that it occupied. According to the British judge and legal philosopher Patrick Devlin, "The War Orders given by the Admiralty on 26 August  were clear enough. All food consigned to Germany through neutral ports was to be captured and all food consigned to Rotterdam was to be presumed consigned to Germany." According to Devlin, this was a serious breach of International Law, equivalent to German minelaying.
Chemical weapons in warfare
The German army was the first to successfully deploy chemical weapons during the Second Battle of Ypres (22 April – 25 May 1915), after German scientists working under the direction of Fritz Haber at the Kaiser Wilhelm Institute developed a method to weaponize chlorine.[r] The use of chemical weapons was sanctioned by the German High Command in an effort to force Allied soldiers out of their entrenched positions, complementing rather than supplanting more lethal conventional weapons. In time, chemical weapons were deployed by all major belligerents throughout the war, inflicting approximately 1.3 million casualties, but relatively few fatalities: About 90,000 in total. For example, there were an estimated 186,000 British chemical weapons casualties during the war (80% of which were the result of exposure to the vesicant sulfur mustard, introduced to the battlefield by the Germans in July 1917, which burns the skin at any point of contact and inflicts more severe lung damage than chlorine or phosgene), and up to one-third of American casualties were caused by them. The Russian Army reportedly suffered roughly 500,000 chemical weapon casualties in World War I. The use of chemical weapons in warfare was in direct violation of the 1899 Hague Declaration Concerning Asphyxiating Gases and the 1907 Hague Convention on Land Warfare, which prohibited their use.
The effect of poison gas was not limited to combatants. Civilians were at risk from the gases as winds blew the poison gases through their towns, and they rarely received warnings or alerts of potential danger. In addition to absent warning systems, civilians often did not have access to effective gas masks. An estimated 100,000–260,000 civilian casualties were caused by chemical weapons during the conflict and tens of thousands more (along with military personnel) died from scarring of the lungs, skin damage, and cerebral damage in the years after the conflict ended. Many commanders on both sides knew such weapons would cause major harm to civilians but nonetheless continued to use them. British Field Marshal Sir Douglas Haig wrote in his diary, "My officers and I were aware that such weapons would cause harm to women and children living in nearby towns, as strong winds were common in the battlefront. However, because the weapon was to be directed against the enemy, none of us were overly concerned at all."
The war damaged chemistry's prestige in European societies, in particular the German variety.
Genocide and ethnic cleansing
The ethnic cleansing of the Ottoman Empire's Armenian population, including mass deportations and executions, during the final years of the Ottoman Empire is considered genocide. The Ottomans carried out organised and systematic massacres of the Armenian population at the beginning of the war and manipulated acts of Armenian resistance by portraying them as rebellions to justify further extermination. In early 1915, a number of Armenians volunteered to join the Russian forces and the Ottoman government used this as a pretext to issue the Tehcir Law (Law on Deportation), which authorised the deportation of Armenians from the Empire's eastern provinces to Syria between 1915 and 1918. The Armenians were intentionally marched to death and a number were attacked by Ottoman brigands. While an exact number of deaths is unknown, the International Association of Genocide Scholars estimates 1.5 million. The government of Turkey has consistently denied the genocide, arguing that those who died were victims of inter-ethnic fighting, famine, or disease during World War I; these claims are rejected by most historians.
Other ethnic groups were similarly attacked by the Ottoman Empire during this period, including Assyrians and Greeks, and some scholars consider those events to be part of the same policy of extermination. At least 250,000 Assyrian Christians, about half of the population, and 350,000–750,000 Anatolian and Pontic Greeks were killed between 1915 and 1922.
Many pogroms accompanied the Russian Revolution of 1917 and the ensuing Russian Civil War. 60,000–200,000 civilian Jews were killed in the atrocities throughout the former Russian Empire (mostly within the Pale of Settlement in present-day Ukraine). There were an estimated 7–12 million casualties during the Russian Civil War, mostly civilians.
Rape of Belgium
The German invaders treated any resistance—such as sabotaging rail lines—as illegal and immoral, and shot the offenders and burned buildings in retaliation. In addition, they tended to suspect that most civilians were potential francs-tireurs (guerrillas) and, accordingly, took and sometimes killed hostages from among the civilian population. The German army executed over 6,500 French and Belgian civilians between August and November 1914, usually in near-random large-scale shootings of civilians ordered by junior German officers. The German Army destroyed 15,000–20,000 buildings—most famously the university library at Louvain—and generated a wave of refugees of over a million people. Over half the German regiments in Belgium were involved in major incidents. Thousands of workers were shipped to Germany to work in factories. British propaganda dramatising the Rape of Belgium attracted much attention in the United States, while Berlin said it was both lawful and necessary because of the threat of franc-tireurs like those in France in 1870. The British and French magnified the reports and disseminated them at home and in the United States, where they played a major role in dissolving support for Germany.
The British soldiers of the war were initially volunteers but increasingly were conscripted into service. Surviving veterans, returning home, often found they could discuss their experiences only amongst themselves. Grouping together, they formed "veterans' associations" or "Legions". A small number of personal accounts of American veterans have been collected by the Library of Congress Veterans History Project.
Prisoners of war
About eight million men surrendered and were held in POW camps during the war. All nations pledged to follow the Hague Conventions on fair treatment of prisoners of war, and the survival rate for POWs was generally much higher than that of combatants at the front. Individual surrenders were uncommon; large units usually surrendered en masse. At the Siege of Maubeuge about 40,000 French soldiers surrendered, at the battle of Galicia Russians took about 100,000 to 120,000 Austrian captives, at the Brusilov Offensive about 325,000 to 417,000 Germans and Austrians surrendered to Russians, and at the Battle of Tannenberg, 92,000 Russians surrendered. When the besieged garrison of Kaunas surrendered in 1915, some 20,000 Russians became prisoners, at the battle near Przasnysz (February–March 1915) 14,000 Germans surrendered to Russians, and at the First Battle of the Marne about 12,000 Germans surrendered to the Allies. 25–31% of Russian losses (as a proportion of those captured, wounded, or killed) were to prisoner status; for Austria-Hungary 32%, for Italy 26%, for France 12%, for Germany 9%; for Britain 7%. Prisoners from the Allied armies totalled about 1.4 million (not including Russia, which lost 2.5–3.5 million men as prisoners). From the Central Powers about 3.3 million men became prisoners; most of them surrendered to Russians. Germany held 2.5 million prisoners; Russia held 2.2–2.9 million; while Britain and France held about 720,000. Most were captured just before the Armistice. The United States held 48,000. The most dangerous moment was the act of surrender when helpless soldiers were sometimes gunned down. Once prisoners reached a camp, conditions were, in general, satisfactory (and much better than in World War II), thanks in part to the efforts of the International Red Cross and inspections by neutral nations. However, conditions were terrible in Russia: starvation was common for prisoners and civilians alike; about 15–20% of the prisoners in Russia died, and in Central Powers imprisonment 8% of Russians. In Germany, food was scarce, but only 5% died.
The Ottoman Empire often treated POWs poorly. Some 11,800 British Empire soldiers, most of them Indians, became prisoners after the Siege of Kut in Mesopotamia in April 1916; 4,250 died in captivity. Although many were in a poor condition when captured, Ottoman officers forced them to march 1,100 kilometres (684 mi) to Anatolia. A survivor said: "We were driven along like beasts; to drop out was to die." The survivors were then forced to build a railway through the Taurus Mountains.
In Russia, when the prisoners from the Czech Legion of the Austro-Hungarian army were released in 1917, they re-armed themselves and briefly became a military and diplomatic force during the Russian Civil War.
While the Allied prisoners of the Central Powers were quickly sent home at the end of active hostilities, the same treatment was not granted to Central Power prisoners of the Allies and Russia, many of whom served as forced labour, e.g., in France until 1920. They were released only after many approaches by the Red Cross to the Allied Supreme Council. German prisoners were still being held in Russia as late as 1924.
Military attachés and war correspondents
Military and civilian observers from every major power closely followed the course of the war. Many were able to report on events from a perspective somewhat akin to modern "embedded" positions within the opposing land and naval forces.
Support for the war
In the Balkans, Yugoslav nationalists such as the leader, Ante Trumbić, strongly supported the war, desiring the freedom of Yugoslavs from Austria-Hungary and other foreign powers and the creation of an independent Yugoslavia. The Yugoslav Committee, led by Trumbić, was formed in Paris on 30 April 1915 but shortly moved its office to London. In April 1918, the Rome Congress of Oppressed Nationalities met, including Czechoslovak, Italian, Polish, Transylvanian, and Yugoslav representatives who urged the Allies to support national self-determination for the peoples residing within Austria-Hungary.
In the Middle East, Arab nationalism soared in Ottoman territories in response to the rise of Turkish nationalism during the war, with Arab nationalist leaders advocating the creation of a pan-Arab state. In 1916, the Arab Revolt began in Ottoman-controlled territories of the Middle East in an effort to achieve independence.
In East Africa, Iyasu V of Ethiopia was supporting the Dervish state who were at war with the British in the Somaliland Campaign. Von Syburg, the German envoy in Addis Ababa, said, "now the time has come for Ethiopia to regain the coast of the Red Sea driving the Italians home, to restore the Empire to its ancient size." The Ethiopian Empire was on the verge of entering World War I on the side of the Central Powers before Iyasu's overthrow at the Battle of Segale due to Allied pressure on the Ethiopian aristocracy. Iyasu was accused of converting to Islam. According to Ethiopian historian Bahru Zewde, the evidence used to prove Iyasu's conversion was a doctored photo of Iyasu wearing a turban provided by the Allies. Some historians claim the British spy T. E. Lawrence forged the Iyasu photo.
A number of socialist parties initially supported the war when it began in August 1914. But European socialists split on national lines, with the concept of class conflict held by radical socialists such as Marxists and syndicalists being overborne by their patriotic support for the war. Once the war began, Austrian, British, French, German, and Russian socialists followed the rising nationalist current by supporting their countries' intervention in the war.
Italian nationalism was stirred by the outbreak of the war and was initially strongly supported by a variety of political factions. One of the most prominent and popular Italian nationalist supporters of the war was Gabriele d'Annunzio, who promoted Italian irredentism and helped sway the Italian public to support intervention in the war. The Italian Liberal Party, under the leadership of Paolo Boselli, promoted intervention in the war on the side of the Allies and used the Dante Alighieri Society to promote Italian nationalism. Italian socialists were divided on whether to support the war or oppose it; some were militant supporters of the war, including Benito Mussolini and Leonida Bissolati. However, the Italian Socialist Party decided to oppose the war after anti-militarist protestors were killed, resulting in a general strike called Red Week. The Italian Socialist Party purged itself of pro-war nationalist members, including Mussolini. Mussolini, a syndicalist who supported the war on grounds of irredentist claims on Italian-populated regions of Austria-Hungary, formed the pro-interventionist Il Popolo d'Italia and the Fasci Rivoluzionario d'Azione Internazionalista ("Revolutionary Fasci for International Action") in October 1914 that later developed into the Fasci di Combattimento in 1919, the origin of fascism. Mussolini's nationalism enabled him to raise funds from Ansaldo (an armaments firm) and other companies to create Il Popolo d'Italia to convince socialists and revolutionaries to support the war.
Opposition to the war
Once war was declared, many socialists and trade unions backed their governments. Among the exceptions were the Bolsheviks, the Socialist Party of America, the Italian Socialist Party, and people like Karl Liebknecht, Rosa Luxemburg, and their followers in Germany.
Benedict XV, elected to the papacy less than three months into World War I, made the war and its consequences the main focus of his early pontificate. In stark contrast to his predecessor, five days after his election he spoke of his determination to do what he could to bring peace. His first encyclical, Ad beatissimi Apostolorum, given 1 November 1914, was concerned with this subject. Benedict XV found his abilities and unique position as a religious emissary of peace ignored by the belligerent powers. The 1915 Treaty of London between Italy and the Triple Entente included secret provisions whereby the Allies agreed with Italy to ignore papal peace moves towards the Central Powers. Consequently, the publication of Benedict's proposed seven-point Peace Note of August 1917 was roundly ignored by all parties except Austria-Hungary.
In Britain in 1914, the Public Schools Officers' Training Corps annual camp was held at Tidworth Pennings, near Salisbury Plain. Head of the British Army, Lord Kitchener, was to review the cadets, but the imminence of the war prevented him. General Horace Smith-Dorrien was sent instead. He surprised the two-or-three thousand cadets by declaring (in the words of Donald Christopher Smith, a Bermudian cadet who was present),
that war should be avoided at almost any cost, that war would solve nothing, that the whole of Europe and more besides would be reduced to ruin, and that the loss of life would be so large that whole populations would be decimated. In our ignorance I, and many of us, felt almost ashamed of a British General who uttered such depressing and unpatriotic sentiments, but during the next four years, those of us who survived the holocaust—probably not more than one-quarter of us—learned how right the General's prognosis was and how courageous he had been to utter it.
Voicing these sentiments did not hinder Smith-Dorrien's career, or prevent him from doing his duty in World War I to the best of his abilities.
Many countries jailed those who spoke out against the conflict. These included Eugene Debs in the United States and Bertrand Russell in Britain. In the US, the Espionage Act of 1917 and Sedition Act of 1918 made it a federal crime to oppose military recruitment or make any statements deemed "disloyal". Publications at all critical of the government were removed from circulation by postal censors, and many served long prison sentences for statements of fact deemed unpatriotic.
A number of nationalists opposed intervention, particularly within states that the nationalists were hostile to. Although the vast majority of Irish people consented to participate in the war in 1914 and 1915, a minority of advanced Irish nationalists staunchly opposed taking part. The war began amid the Home Rule crisis in Ireland that had resurfaced in 1912, and by July 1914 there was a serious possibility of an outbreak of civil war in Ireland. Irish nationalists and Marxists attempted to pursue Irish independence, culminating in the Easter Rising of 1916, with Germany sending 20,000 rifles to Ireland to stir unrest in Britain. The UK government placed Ireland under martial law in response to the Easter Rising, though once the immediate threat of revolution had dissipated, the authorities did try to make concessions to nationalist feeling. However, opposition to involvement in the war increased in Ireland, resulting in the Conscription Crisis of 1918.
Other opposition came from conscientious objectors—some socialist, some religious—who refused to fight. In Britain, 16,000 people asked for conscientious objector status. Some of them, most notably prominent peace activist Stephen Henry Hobhouse, refused both military and alternative service. Many suffered years of prison, including solitary confinement and bread and water diets. Even after the war, in Britain many job advertisements were marked "No conscientious objectors need apply".[This quote needs a citation]
In 1917, a series of French Army Mutinies led to dozens of soldiers being executed and many more imprisoned.
On 1–4 May 1917, about 100,000 workers and soldiers of Petrograd, and after them, the workers and soldiers of other Russian cities, led by the Bolsheviks, demonstrated under banners reading "Down with the war!" and "all power to the soviets!" The mass demonstrations resulted in a crisis for the Russian Provisional Government. In Milan, in May 1917, Bolshevik revolutionaries organised and engaged in rioting calling for an end to the war, and managed to close down factories and stop public transportation. The Italian army was forced to enter Milan with tanks and machine guns to face Bolsheviks and anarchists, who fought violently until 23 May when the army gained control of the city. Almost 50 people (including three Italian soldiers) were killed and over 800 people arrested.
In September 1917, Russian soldiers in France began questioning why they were fighting for the French at all and mutinied. In Russia, opposition to the war led to soldiers also establishing their own revolutionary committees, which helped foment the October Revolution of 1917, with the call going up for "bread, land, and peace". The Decree on Peace, written by Vladimir Lenin, was passed on 8 November 1917, following the success of the October Revolution. The Bolsheviks agreed to a peace treaty with Germany, the peace of Brest-Litovsk, despite its harsh conditions. The German Revolution of 1918–1919 led to the abdication of the Kaiser and German surrender.
Conscription was common in most European countries. However, it was controversial in English-speaking countries. It was especially unpopular among minority ethnic groups—especially the Irish Catholics in Ireland and Australia, and the French Catholics in Canada.
In Canada, the issue produced a major political crisis that permanently alienated the Francophones. It opened a political gap between French Canadians, who believed their true loyalty was to Canada and not to the British Empire, and members of the Anglophone majority, who saw the war as a duty to their British heritage.
Australia had a form of conscription at the outbreak of the war, as compulsory military training had been introduced in 1911. However, the Defence Act 1903 provided that unexempted males could be called upon only for home defence during times of war, not overseas service. Prime Minister Billy Hughes wished to amend the legislation to require conscripts to serve overseas, and held two non-binding referendums – one in 1916 and one in 1917 – in order to secure public support. Both were defeated by narrow margins, with farmers, the labour movement, the Catholic Church, and Irish-Australians combining to campaign for the "No" vote. The issue of conscription caused the 1916 Australian Labor Party split. Hughes and his supporters were expelled from the party, forming the National Labor Party and then the Nationalist Party. Despite the referendum results, the Nationalists won a landslide victory at the 1917 federal election.
In Britain, conscription resulted in the calling up of nearly every physically fit man in Britain—six of ten million eligible. Of these, about 750,000 lost their lives. Most deaths were those of young unmarried men; however, 160,000 wives lost husbands and 300,000 children lost fathers. Conscription during the First World War began when the British government passed the Military Service Act in 1916. The act specified that single men aged 18 to 40 years old were liable to be called up for military service unless they were widowed with children or ministers of a religion. There was a system of Military Service Tribunals to adjudicate upon claims for exemption upon the grounds of performing civilian work of national importance, domestic hardship, health, and conscientious objection. The law went through several changes before the war ended. Married men were exempt in the original Act, although this was changed in June 1916. The age limit was also eventually raised to 51 years old. Recognition of work of national importance also diminished, and in the last year of the war, there was some support for the conscription of clergy. Conscription lasted until mid-1919. Due to the political situation in Ireland, conscription was never applied there; only in England, Scotland and Wales.
In the United States, conscription began in 1917 and was generally well received, with a few pockets of opposition in isolated rural areas. The administration decided to rely primarily on conscription, rather than voluntary enlistment, to raise military manpower after only 73,000 volunteers enlisted out of the initial 1 million target in the first six weeks of the war. In 1917 10 million men were registered. This was deemed to be inadequate, so age ranges were increased and exemptions reduced, and so by the end of 1918 this increased to 24 million men that were registered with nearly 3 million inducted into the military services. The draft was universal and included blacks on the same terms as whites, although they served in different units. In all 367,710 black Americans were drafted (13% of the total), compared to 2,442,586 white (87%).
Forms of resistance ranged from peaceful protest to violent demonstrations and from humble letter-writing campaigns asking for mercy to radical newspapers demanding reform. The most common tactics were dodging and desertion, and many communities sheltered and defended their draft dodgers as political heroes. Many socialists were jailed for "obstructing the recruitment or enlistment service". The most famous was Eugene Debs, head of the Socialist Party of America, who ran for president in 1920 from his prison cell. In 1917 a number of radicals and anarchists challenged the new draft law in federal court, arguing that it was a direct violation of the Thirteenth Amendment's prohibition against slavery and involuntary servitude. The Supreme Court unanimously upheld the constitutionality of the draft act in the Selective Draft Law Cases on 7 January 1918.
Like all the armies of mainland Europe, Austria-Hungary relied on conscription to fill its ranks. Officer recruitment, however, was voluntary. The effect of this at the start of the war was that well over a quarter of the rank and file were Slavs, while more than 75% of the officers were ethnic Germans. This was much resented. The army has been described as being "run on colonial lines" and the Slav soldiers as "disaffected". Thus conscription contributed greatly to Austria's disastrous performance on the battlefield.
The non-military diplomatic and propaganda interactions among the nations were designed to build support for the cause or to undermine support for the enemy. For the most part, wartime diplomacy focused on five issues: propaganda campaigns; defining and redefining the war goals, which became harsher as the war went on; luring neutral nations (Italy, Ottoman Empire, Bulgaria, Romania) into the coalition by offering slices of enemy territory; and encouragement by the Allies of nationalistic minority movements inside the Central Powers, especially among Czechs, Poles, and Arabs. In addition, there were multiple peace proposals coming from neutrals, or one side or the other; none of them progressed very far.
Legacy and memory
... "Strange, friend," I said, "Here is no cause to mourn."
"None," said the other, "Save the undone years"...
The first tentative efforts to comprehend the meaning and consequences of modern warfare began during the initial phases of the war, and this process continued throughout and after the end of hostilities, and is still underway, more than a century later. As late as 2007, signs warning visitors to keep off certain paths at battlefield sites like Verdun and Somme remained in place as unexploded ordnance continued to pose a danger to farmers living near former battlegrounds. In France and Belgium locals who discover caches of unexploded munitions are assisted by weapons disposal units. In some places, plant life has still not returned to normal.
Teaching World War I has presented special challenges. When compared with World War II, the First World War is often thought to be "a wrong war fought for the wrong reasons". It lacks the metanarrative of good versus evil that characterizes the Second World War. Lacking recognizable heroes and villains, it is often taught thematically, invoking tropes like the wastefulness of war, the folly of generals and the innocence of soldiers. The complexity of the conflict is mostly obscured by these oversimplifications.
Historian Heather Jones argues that the historiography has been reinvigorated by the cultural turn in recent years. Scholars have raised entirely new questions regarding military occupation, radicalisation of politics, race, and the male body. Furthermore, new research has revised our understanding of five major topics that historians have long debated: Why the war began, why the Allies won, whether generals were responsible for high casualty rates, how the soldiers endured the horrors of trench warfare, and to what extent the civilian homefront accepted and endorsed the war effort.
Memorials were erected in thousands of villages and towns. Close to battlefields, those buried in improvised burial grounds were gradually moved to formal graveyards under the care of organisations such as the Commonwealth War Graves Commission, the American Battle Monuments Commission, the German War Graves Commission, and Le Souvenir français. Many of these graveyards also have central monuments to the missing or unidentified dead, such as the Menin Gate memorial and the Thiepval Memorial to the Missing of the Somme.
In 1915 John McCrae, a Canadian army doctor, wrote the poem In Flanders Fields as a salute to those who perished in the Great War. Published in Punch on 8 December 1915, it is still recited today, especially on Remembrance Day and Memorial Day.
National World War I Museum and Memorial in Kansas City, Missouri, is a memorial dedicated to all Americans who served in World War I. The Liberty Memorial was dedicated on 1 November 1921, when the supreme Allied commanders spoke to a crowd of more than 100,000 people.
The UK Government has budgeted substantial resources to the commemoration of the war during the period 2014 to 2018. The lead body is the Imperial War Museum. On 3 August 2014, French President François Hollande and German President Joachim Gauck together marked the centenary of Germany's declaration of war on France by laying the first stone of a memorial in Vieil Armand, known in German as Hartmannswillerkopf, for French and German soldiers killed in the war. During the Armistice centenary commemorations, French President Emmanuel Macron and German Chancellor Angela Merkel visited the site of the signing of the Armistice of Compiègne and unveiled a plaque to reconciliation.
The examples and perspective in this section deal primarily with the United Kingdom and do not represent a worldwide view of the subject. (June 2017)
World War I had a lasting impact on social memory. It was seen by many in Britain as signalling the end of an era of stability stretching back to the Victorian period, and across Europe many regarded it as a watershed. Historian Samuel Hynes explained:
A generation of innocent young men, their heads full of high abstractions like Honour, Glory and England, went off to war to make the world safe for democracy. They were slaughtered in stupid battles planned by stupid generals. Those who survived were shocked, disillusioned and embittered by their war experiences, and saw that their real enemies were not the Germans, but the old men at home who had lied to them. They rejected the values of the society that had sent them to war, and in doing so separated their own generation from the past and from their cultural inheritance.
This has become the most common perception of World War I, perpetuated by the art, cinema, poems, and stories published subsequently. Films such as All Quiet on the Western Front, Paths of Glory and King & Country have perpetuated the idea, while war-time films including Camrades, Poppies of Flanders, and Shoulder Arms indicate that the most contemporary views of the war were overall far more positive. Likewise, the art of Paul Nash, John Nash, Christopher Nevinson, and Henry Tonks in Britain painted a negative view of the conflict in keeping with the growing perception, while popular war-time artists such as Muirhead Bone painted more serene and pleasant interpretations subsequently rejected as inaccurate. Several historians like John Terraine, Niall Ferguson and Gary Sheffield have challenged these interpretations as partial and polemical views:
These beliefs did not become widely shared because they offered the only accurate interpretation of wartime events. In every respect, the war was much more complicated than they suggest. In recent years, historians have argued persuasively against almost every popular cliché of World War I. It has been pointed out that, although the losses were devastating, their greatest impact was socially and geographically limited. The many emotions other than horror experienced by soldiers in and out of the front line, including comradeship, boredom, and even enjoyment, have been recognised. The war is not now seen as a 'fight about nothing', but as a war of ideals, a struggle between aggressive militarism and more or less liberal democracy. It has been acknowledged that British generals were often capable men facing difficult challenges and that it was under their command that the British army played a major part in the defeat of the Germans in 1918: a great forgotten victory.
Though these views have been discounted as "myths", they are common. They have dynamically changed according to contemporary influences, reflecting in the 1950s perceptions of the war as "aimless" following the contrasting Second World War and emphasising conflict within the ranks during times of class conflict in the 1960s. The majority of additions to the contrary are often rejected.
The social trauma caused by unprecedented rates of casualties manifested itself in different ways, which have been the subject of subsequent historical debate. Over 8 million Europeans died in the war. Millions suffered permanent disabilities. The war gave birth to fascism and Bolshevism and destroyed the dynasties that had ruled the Ottoman, Habsburg, Russian and German Empires.
The optimism of la belle époque was destroyed, and those who had fought in the war were referred to as the Lost Generation. For years afterwards, people mourned the dead, the missing, and the many disabled. Many soldiers returned with severe trauma, suffering from shell shock (also called neurasthenia, a condition related to posttraumatic stress disorder). Many more returned home with few after-effects; however, their silence about the war contributed to the conflict's growing mythological status. Though many participants did not share in the experiences of combat or spend any significant time at the front, or had positive memories of their service, the images of suffering and trauma became the widely shared perception. Such historians as Dan Todman, Paul Fussell, and Samuel Heyns have all published works since the 1990s arguing that these common perceptions of the war are factually incorrect.
Discontent in Germany and Austria
The rise of Nazism and fascism included a revival of the nationalist spirit and a rejection of many post-war changes. Similarly, the popularity of the stab-in-the-back legend (German: Dolchstoßlegende) was a testament to the psychological state of defeated Germany and was a rejection of responsibility for the conflict. This conspiracy theory of betrayal became common, and the German populace came to see themselves as victims. The widespread acceptance of the "stab-in-the-back" theory delegitimised the Weimar government and destabilised the system, opening it to extremes of right and left. The same occurred in Austria which did not consider itself responsible for the outbreak of the war and claimed not to have suffered a military defeat.
Communist and fascist movements around Europe drew strength from this theory and enjoyed a new level of popularity. These feelings were most pronounced in areas directly or harshly affected by the war. Adolf Hitler was able to gain popularity by using German discontent with the still controversial Treaty of Versailles. World War II was in part a continuation of the power struggle never fully resolved by World War I. Furthermore, it was common for Germans in the 1930s to justify acts of aggression due to perceived injustices imposed by the victors of World War I. American historian William Rubinstein wrote that:
The 'Age of Totalitarianism' included nearly all the infamous examples of genocide in modern history, headed by the Jewish Holocaust, but also comprising the mass murders and purges of the Communist world, other mass killings carried out by Nazi Germany and its allies, and also the Armenian Genocide of 1915. All these slaughters, it is argued here, had a common origin, the collapse of the elite structure and normal modes of government of much of central, eastern and southern Europe as a result of World War I, without which surely neither Communism nor Fascism would have existed except in the minds of unknown agitators and crackpots.
One of the most dramatic effects of the war was the expansion of governmental powers and responsibilities in Britain, France, the United States, and the Dominions of the British Empire. To harness all the power of their societies, governments created new ministries and powers. New taxes were levied and laws enacted, all designed to bolster the war effort; many have lasted to the present. Similarly, the war strained the abilities of some formerly large and bureaucratised governments, such as in Austria-Hungary and Germany.
Gross domestic product (GDP) increased for three Allies (Britain, Italy, and the United States), but decreased in France and Russia, in neutral Netherlands, and in the three main Central Powers. The shrinkage in GDP in Austria, Russia, France, and the Ottoman Empire ranged between 30% and 40%. In Austria, for example, most pigs were slaughtered, so at war's end there was no meat.
In all nations, the government's share of GDP increased, surpassing 50% in both Germany and France and nearly reaching that level in Britain. To pay for purchases in the United States, Britain cashed in its extensive investments in American railroads and then began borrowing heavily from Wall Street. President Wilson was on the verge of cutting off the loans in late 1916 but allowed a great increase in US government lending to the Allies. After 1919, the US demanded repayment of these loans. The repayments were, in part, funded by German reparations that, in turn, were supported by American loans to Germany. This circular system collapsed in 1931 and some loans were never repaid. Britain still owed the United States $4.4 billion[s] of World War I debt in 1934; the last installment was finally paid in 2015.
Macro- and micro-economic consequences devolved from the war. Families were altered by the departure of many men. With the death or absence of the primary wage earner, women were forced into the workforce in unprecedented numbers. At the same time, industry needed to replace the lost labourers sent to war. This aided the struggle for voting rights for women.
World War I further compounded the gender imbalance, adding to the phenomenon of surplus women. The deaths of nearly one million men during the war in Britain increased the gender gap by almost a million: from 670,000 to 1,700,000. The number of unmarried women seeking economic means grew dramatically. In addition, demobilisation and economic decline following the war caused high unemployment. The war increased female employment; however, the return of demobilised men displaced many from the workforce, as did the closure of many of the wartime factories.
In Britain, rationing was finally imposed in early 1918, limited to meat, sugar, and fats (butter and margarine), but not bread. The new system worked smoothly. From 1914 to 1918, trade union membership doubled, from a little over four million to a little over eight million.
Britain turned to her colonies for help in obtaining essential war materials whose supply from traditional sources had become difficult. Geologists such as Albert Ernest Kitson were called on to find new resources of precious minerals in the African colonies. Kitson discovered important new deposits of manganese, used in munitions production, in the Gold Coast.
Article 231 of the Treaty of Versailles (the so-called "war guilt" clause) stated Germany accepted responsibility for "all the loss and damage to which the Allied and Associated Governments and their nationals have been subjected as a consequence of the war imposed upon them by the aggression of Germany and her allies." It was worded as such to lay a legal basis for reparations, and a similar clause was inserted in the treaties with Austria and Hungary. However, neither of them interpreted it as an admission of war guilt." In 1921, the total reparation sum was placed at 132 billion gold marks. However, "Allied experts knew that Germany could not pay" this sum. The total sum was divided into three categories, with the third being "deliberately designed to be chimerical" and its "primary function was to mislead public opinion ... into believing the "total sum was being maintained." Thus, 50 billion gold marks (12.5 billion dollars) "represented the actual Allied assessment of German capacity to pay" and "therefore ... represented the total German reparations" figure that had to be paid.
This figure could be paid in cash or in-kind (coal, timber, chemical dyes, etc.). In addition, some of the territory lost—via the treaty of Versailles—was credited towards the reparation figure as were other acts such as helping to restore the Library of Louvain. By 1929, the Great Depression arrived, causing political chaos throughout the world. In 1932 the payment of reparations was suspended by the international community, by which point Germany had paid only the equivalent of 20.598 billion gold marks in reparations. With the rise of Adolf Hitler, all bonds and loans that had been issued and taken out during the 1920s and early 1930s were cancelled. David Andelman notes "refusing to pay doesn't make an agreement null and void. The bonds, the agreement, still exist." Thus, following the Second World War, at the London Conference in 1953, Germany agreed to resume payment on the money borrowed. On 3 October 2010, Germany made the final payment on these bonds.[t]
The war contributed to the evolution of the wristwatch from women's jewellery to a practical everyday item, replacing the pocketwatch, which requires a free hand to operate. Military funding of advancements in radio contributed to the post-war popularity of the medium.
- Russian Republic during 1917. The Bolshevik government signed the separate peace with the Central Powers shortly after their armed seizure of power of November that year.
- The United States did not ratify any of the treaties agreed to at the Paris Peace Conference.
- Bulgaria joined the Central Powers on 14 October 1915.
- The Ottoman Empire agreed to a secret alliance with Germany on 2 August 1914. It joined the war on the side of the Central Powers on 29 October 1914.
- The United States declared war on Austria-Hungary on 7 December 1917.
- Austria was considered one of the successor states to Austria-Hungary.
- The United States declared war on Germany on 6 April 1917.
- Hungary was considered one of the successor states to Austria-Hungary.
- Although the Treaty of Sèvres was intended to end the war between the Allied Powers and the Ottoman Empire, the Allied Powers and the Republic of Turkey, the successor state of the Ottoman Empire, agreed to the Treaty of Lausanne.
- Abdicated in March 1917, executed in July 1918.
- Died in 1916 of pneumonia, succeeded by Charles (Karl) I of Austria
- Died in July 1918 and succeeded by Mehmed VI
- Figures are for Metropolitan France and its colonies
- Figures are for Britain and her colonies; the dominions and India are listed separately
- Cvjetko Popović, Gavrilo Princip, Nedeljko Čabrinović, Trifko Grabež, and Vaso Čubrilović were Bosnian Serbs, while Muhamed Mehmedbašić was from the Bosniak Muslim community 
- This gave German submarines permission to attack any merchant ships entering the war zone, regardless of their cargo or nationality; the zone included all British and French coastal waters 
- Unlike the others, the successor state to the Russian Empire, the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics, retained similar external borders, via retaining or quickly recovering lost territories
- A German attempt to use chemical weapons on the Russian front in January 1915 failed to cause casualties.
- 109 in this context – see Long and short scales
- World War I officially ended when Germany paid off the final amount of reparations imposed on it by the Allies.
- Tucker & Roberts 2005, p. 273
- Mougel, Nadège. "World War I casualties" (PDF). Centre européen Robert Schuman.
- Nash (1976). Darkest Hours. Rowman & Littlefield. ISBN 978-1590775264.
- Gilbert 1994, p. xv.
- Spreeuwenberg 2018, pp. 2561–2567.
- Williams 2014, pp. 4–10.
- Zuber 2011, pp. 46–49.
- Sheffield 2002, p. 251.
- Shapiro & Epstein 2006, p. 329.
- "Were they always called World War I and World War II?". Ask History. Retrieved 24 October 2013.
- Braybon 2004, p. 8.
- "great, adj., adv., and n". Oxford English Dictionary.
- "The war to end all wars". BBC News. 10 November 1998. Retrieved 15 December 2015.
- Margery Fee and Janice McAlpine. Guide to Canadian English Usage. (Oxford UP, 1997), p. 210.
- Clark 2013, pp. 121–152.
- Zeldin 1977, p. 117.
- Keegan 1998, p. 52.
- Medlicott 1945, pp. 66–70.
- Keenan 1986, p. 20.
- Willmott 2003, p. 15.
- Fay 1930, pp. 290–293.
- Willmott 2003, p. 21.
- Herwig 1988, pp. 72–73.
- Moll & Luebbert 1980, pp. 153–185.
- Stevenson 2016, p. 45.
- Crisp 1976, pp. 174–196.
- Stevenson 2016, p. 42.
- McMeekin 2015, pp. 66–67.
- Clark 2013, p. 86.
- Clark 2013, pp. 251–252.
- McMeekin 2015, p. 69.
- McMeekin 2015, p. 73.
- Willmott 2003, pp. 2–23.
- Clark 2013, p. 288.
- Keegan 1998, pp. 48–49.
- Finestone & Massie 1981, p. 247.
- Smith 2010, p. ?.
- Butcher 2014, p. 103.
- Butcher 2014, pp. 188–189.
- Gilbert 1994, p. 16.
- Gilbert 1994, p. 17.
- "European powers maintain focus despite killings in Sarajevo – This Day in History". History.com. 30 June 1914. Retrieved 26 December 2013.
- Willmott 2003, p. 26.
- Clark, Christopher (25 June 2014). Month of Madness. BBC Radio 4.
- Djordjević, Dimitrije; Spence, Richard B. (1992). Scholar, patriot, mentor: historical essays in honor of Dimitrije Djordjević. East European Monographs. p. 313. ISBN 978-0-88033-217-0.
Following the assassination of Franz Ferdinand in June 1914, Croats and Muslims in Sarajevo joined forces in an anti-Serb pogrom.
- Reports Service: Southeast Europe series. American Universities Field Staff. 1964. p. 44. Retrieved 7 December 2013.
... the assassination was followed by officially encouraged anti-Serb riots in Sarajevo ...
- Kröll, Herbert (2008). Austrian-Greek encounters over the centuries: history, diplomacy, politics, arts, economics. Studienverlag. p. 55. ISBN 978-3-7065-4526-6. Retrieved 1 September 2013.
... arrested and interned some 5.500 prominent Serbs and sentenced to death some 460 persons, a new Schutzkorps, an auxiliary militia, widened the anti-Serb repression.
- Tomasevich 2001, p. 485.
- Schindler, John R. (2007). Unholy Terror: Bosnia, Al-Qa'ida, and the Rise of Global Jihad. Zenith Imprint. p. 29. ISBN 978-1-61673-964-5.
- Velikonja 2003, p. 141.
- Stevenson 1996, p. 12.
- MacMillan 2013, p. 532.
- Willmott 2003, p. 27.
- Fromkin 2004, pp. 196–197.
- MacMillan 2013, p. 536.
- Lieven 2016, p. 326.
- Clark 2013, pp. 526–527.
- Martel 2014, p. 335.
- Gilbert 1994, p. 27.
- Clayton 2003, p. 45.
- Clark 2013, pp. 539–541.
- Gilbert 1994, p. 29.
- Coogan 2009, p. 48.
- McMeekin 2014, pp. 342, 349.
- MacMillan 2013, pp. 579–580, 585.
- Crowe 2001, pp. 4–5.
- Willmott 2003, p. 29.
- Clark 2013, pp. 550–551.
- Strachan 2003, pp. 292–296, 343–354.
- Tucker & Roberts 2005, p. 172.
- Schindler 2002, pp. 159–195.
- "Veliki rat – Avijacija". rts.rs. RTS, Radio televizija Srbije, Radio Television of Serbia.
- "How was the first military airplane shot down". National Geographic. Archived from the original on 31 August 2015. Retrieved 5 August 2015.
- Horne 1964, p. 22.
- Holmes 2014, pp. 194, 211.
- Stevenson 2012, p. 54.
- Jackson 2018, p. 55.
- Lieven 2016, p. 327.
- Tucker & Roberts 2005, pp. 376–378.
- Horne 1964, p. 221.
- Donko 2012, p. 79.
- Keegan 1998, pp. 224–232.
- Falls 1960, pp. 79–80.
- Farwell 1989, p. 353.
- Brown 1994, pp. 197–198.
- Brown 1994, pp. 201–203.
- "Participants from the Indian subcontinent in the First World War". Memorial Gates Trust. Retrieved 12 December 2008.
- Horniman, Benjamin Guy (1984). British administration and the Amritsar massacre. Mittal Publications. p. 45.
- Raudzens 1990, p. 424.
- Raudzens 1990, pp. 421–423.
- Gilbert 1994, p. 99.
- Goodspeed 1985, p. 199 (footnote).
- Duffy, Michael (22 August 2009). "Weapons of War: Poison Gas". Firstworldwar.com. Retrieved 5 July 2012.
- Love 1996.
- Dupuy 1993, p. 1042.
- Grant 2005, p. 276.
- Lichfield, John (21 February 2006). "Verdun: myths and memories of the 'lost villages' of France". The Independent. Retrieved 23 July 2013.
- Harris 2008, p. 271.
- "Living conditions". Trench Warfare. Archived from the original on 20 April 2018. Retrieved 19 April 2018.[unreliable source?]
- Valentine V (20 February 2006). "Origins of the 1918 Pandemic: The Case for France". NPR. National Public Radio. Archived from the original on 30 April 2009. Retrieved 13 April 2020.
- Anderson, Susan (29 August 2006). "Analysis of Spanish flu cases in 1918–1920 suggests transfusions might help in bird flu pandemic". American College of Physicians. Retrieved 28 September 2018.
- Porras-Gallo & Davis 2014.
- Barry 2004, p. 171
- Galvin, J. (31 July 2007). "Spanish Flu Pandemic: 1918". Popular Mechanics. Archived from the original on 20 September 2011. Retrieved 2 October 2011.
- Tucker & Roberts 2005, p. 1221.
- Tucker & Roberts 2005, p. 854.
- Keegan 1998, pp. 325–326.
- Strachan 2003, p. 244.
- Inglis 1995, p. 2.
- Humphries 2007, p. 66.
- "The Naval Balance of Power in 1914". 4 August 2014.
- Sempa, Francis P. (30 December 2014). "The Geopolitical Vision of Alfred Thayer Mahan". thediplomat.com. The Diplomat. Retrieved 28 April 2018.
- Taylor 2007, pp. 39–47.
- Keene 2006, p. 5.
- Halpern 1995, p. 293.
- Zieger 2001, p. 50.
- Jeremy Black (June 2016). "Jutland's Place in History". Naval History. 30 (3): 16–21.
- Sheffield, Garry. "The First Battle of the Atlantic". World Wars in Depth. BBC. Retrieved 11 November 2009.
- Gilbert 2004, p. 306. sfn error: no target: CITEREFGilbert2004 (help)
- von der Porten 1969.
- Jones 2001, p. 80.
- Nova Scotia House of Assembly Committee on Veterans Affairs (9 November 2006). "Committee Hansard". Hansard. Retrieved 12 March 2013.
- Chickering, Roger; Förster, Stig; Greiner, Bernd (2005). A world at total war: global conflict and the politics of destruction, 1937–1945. Publications of the German Historical Institute. Washington, DC: Cambridge University Press. ISBN 978-0-521-83432-2.
- Price 1980
- "The Balkan Wars and World War I". p. 28. Library of Congress Country Studies.
- Tucker & Roberts 2005, p. 241–.
- Neiberg 2005, pp. 54–55.
- Tucker & Roberts 2005, pp. 1075–1076.
- DiNardo 2015, p. 102.
- Neiberg 2005, pp. 108–110.
- Hall, Richard (2010). Balkan Breakthrough: The Battle of Dobro Pole 1918. Indiana University Press. p. 11. ISBN 978-0-253-35452-5.
- Tucker, Wood & Murphy 1999, pp. 150–152.
- Korsun, N. "The Balkan Front of the World War" (in Russian). militera.lib.ru. Retrieved 27 September 2010.
- Doughty 2005, p. 491.
- Gettleman, Marvin; Schaar, Stuart, eds. (2003). The Middle East and Islamic world reader (4th ed.). New York: Grove Press. pp. 119–120. ISBN 978-0-8021-3936-8.
- January, Brendan (2007). Genocide : modern crimes against humanity. Minneapolis, Minn.: Twenty-First Century Books. p. 14. ISBN 978-0-7613-3421-7.
- Lieberman, Benjamin (2013). The Holocaust and Genocides in Europe. New York: Continuum Publishing Corporation. pp. 80–81. ISBN 978-1-4411-9478-7.
- Arthur J. Barker, The Neglected War: Mesopotamia, 1914–1918 (London: Faber, 1967)
- Crawford, John; McGibbon, Ian (2007). New Zealand's Great War: New Zealand, the Allies and the First World War. Exisle Publishing. pp. 219–220.
- Fromkin 2004, p. 119.
- Hinterhoff 1984, pp. 499–503
- a b c The Encyclopedia Americana, 1920, v.28, p.403
- Northcote, Dudley S. (1922). "Saving Forty Thousand Armenians". Current History. New York Times Co.
- Sachar 1970, pp. 122–138.
- Gilbert 1994.
- Hanioglu, M. Sukru (2010). A Brief History of the Late Ottoman Empire. Princeton University Press. pp. 180–181. ISBN 978-0-691-13452-9.
- Gardner, Hall (2015). The Failure to Prevent World War I: The Unexpected Armageddon. Ashgate. p. 120.
- Page, Thomas Nelson (1920). Italy and the world war. Scribners. pp. 142–208.
- Marshall & Josephy 1982, p. 108
- Thompson, Mark (2009). The White War: Life and Death on the Italian Front, 1915–1919. London: Faber and Faber. p. 163. ISBN 978-0-571-22334-3.
- Praga, Giuseppe; Luxardo, Franco (1993). History of Dalmatia. Giardini. p. 281. ISBN 88-427-0295-1.
- O'Brien, Paul (2005). Mussolini in the First World War: the Journalist, the Soldier, the Fascist. Oxford, England; New York: Berg. p. 17. ISBN 1-84520-051-9.
- Hickey 2003, pp. 60–65.
- Tucker & Roberts 2005, pp. 585–589.
- Laurentiu-Cristian Dumitru, Preliminaries of Romania's entering the World War I, No. 1/2012, Bulletin of "Carol I" National Defence University, Bucharest, p.171
- Michael B. Barrett, Prelude to Blitzkrieg: The 1916 Austro-German Campaign in Romania (2013)
- Cyril Falls, The Great War, p. 285
- Clark 1927.
- Béla, Köpeczi. Erdély története. Akadémiai Kiadó.
- Béla, Köpeczi (1998). History of Transylvania. Akadémiai Kiadó. ISBN 978-84-8371-020-3.
- Erlikman, Vadim (2004). Потери народонаселения в 20. веке [The loss of population in the 20th Century] (in Russian). Moscow: Русская панорама. ISBN 978-5-93165-107-1.
- Tucker & Roberts 2005, p. 715.
- Meyer 2006, pp. 152–154, 161, 163, 175, 182.
- Schindler 2003.
- Neiberg, Michael (2014). The Cambridge History of the First World War (1st ed.). Cambridge University Press. pp. 110–132.
- "How Germany got the Russian Revolution off the ground". Deutsche Welle. 7 November 2017.
- Wheeler-Bennett, John W. (1938). Brest-Litovsk : The forgotten peace. London: Macmillan. pp. 36–41.
- "Civil War still divides Finland after 100 years, poll suggests". Yle Uutiset. 16 January 2018.
- Mawdsley 2007, pp. 54–55.
- Alexander Lanoszka; Michael A. Hunzeker (11 November 2018). "Why the First War lasted so long". The Washington Post. Retrieved 11 November 2018.
- Keegan 1998, p. 345.
- Kernek 1970, pp. 721–766.
- Stevenson 2012, pp. 315–316.
- Gilbert 1994, p. 157.
- Stevenson 2012, p. 258.
- Gilbert 1994, p. 159.
- Cooper 2009, p. 278.
- Stevenson 2012, p. 316.
- Stevenson 2012, p. 250.
- Stevenson 2012, pp. 260–261.
- Stevenson 2012, p. 262.
- Gilbert 1994, pp. 308–309.
- Stevenson 2012, p. 317.
- MacMillan 2001, p. 14.
- Gilbert 1994, p. 318.
- Grotelueschen 2006, pp. 14–15.
- Millett & Murray 1988, p. 143.
- Grotelueschen 2006, pp. 10–11.
- Stevenson 2012, p. 318.
- Grotelueschen 2006, pp. 44–46.
- Stevenson 2012, p. 403.
- Marshall & Josephy 1982, p. 211
- Heyman 1997, pp. 146–147.
- Kurlander 2006. sfn error: no target: CITEREFKurlander2006 (help)
- Shanafelt 1985, pp. 125–130.
- Erickson 2001, p. 163.
- Moore, A. Briscoe (1920). The Mounted Riflemen in Sinai & Palestine: The Story of New Zealand's Crusaders. Christchurch: Whitcombe & Tombs. p. 67. OCLC 156767391.
- Falls, Cyril (1930). Military Operations. Part I Egypt & Palestine: Volume 2 From June 1917 to the End of the War. Official History of the Great War Based on Official Documents by Direction of the Historical Section of the Committee of Imperial Defence. Maps compiled by A.F. Becke. London: HM Stationery Office. p. 59. OCLC 1113542987.
- Wavell, Earl (1968) . "The Palestine Campaigns". In Sheppard, Eric William (ed.). A Short History of the British Army (4th ed.). London: Constable & Co. pp. 153–155. OCLC 35621223.
- "Text of the Decree of the Surrender of Jerusalem into British Control". First World War.com. Archived from the original on 14 June 2011. Retrieved 13 May 2015.
- Bruce, Anthony (2002). The Last Crusade: The Palestine Campaign in the First World War. London: John Murray. p. 162. ISBN 978-0-7195-5432-2.
- "Who's Who – Kress von Kressenstein". First World War.com. Retrieved 13 May 2015.
- "Who's Who – Otto Liman von Sanders". First World War.com. Retrieved 13 May 2015.
- Erickson 2001, p. 195.
- Daily Telegraph Wednesday 15 August 1917, reprinted on p. 26 of Daily Telegraph Tuesday 15 August 2017
- Westwell 2004.
- Posen 1984, p. 190 harvnb error: no target: CITEREFPosen1984 (help)[full citation needed]
- Gray 1991, p. 86.
- Rickard 2007.
- Hovannisian 1967, pp. 1–39.
- Ayers 1919, p. 104.
- Schreiber, Shane B. (2004) . Shock Army of the British Empire: The Canadian Corps in the Last 100 Days of the Great War. St. Catharines, ON: Vanwell. ISBN 978-1-55125-096-0. OCLC 57063659.[page needed]
- Rickard 2001.
- Brown, Malcolm (1999) . 1918: Year of Victory. London: Pan. p. 190. ISBN 978-0-330-37672-3.
- Pitt 2003
- Gray & Argyle 1990
- Terraine 1963.
- Nicholson 1962.
- Ludendorff 1919.
- McLellan, p. 49.
- Christie 1997, p. ?.
- Stevenson 2004, p. 380.
- Hull 2006, pp. 307–310.
- Stevenson 2004, p. 383.
- Painter 2012, p. 25.
- K. Kuhl. "Die 14 Kieler Punkte" [The Kiel 14 points] (PDF).
- Dähnhardt, D. (1978). Revolution in Kiel. Neumünster: Karl Wachholtz Verlag. p. 91. ISBN 3-529-02636-0.
- Wette, Wolfram (2006). "Die Novemberrevolution – Kiel 1918". In Fleischhauer; Turowski (eds.). Kieler Erinnerungsorte. Boyens.
- Stevenson 2004, p. 385.
- Stevenson 2004, Chapter 17.
- "1918 Timeline". League of Nations Photo Archive. Retrieved 20 November 2009.
- "The Battle of Dobro Polje – The Forgotten Balkan Skirmish That Ended WW1". Militaryhistorynow.com. 21 September 2017. Archived from the original on 23 September 2017. Retrieved 21 November 2019.
- "The Germans Could no Longer Keep up the Fight". historycollection.com. 22 February 2017. Retrieved 21 November 2019.
- Axelrod 2018, p. 260. sfn error: no target: CITEREFAxelrod2018 (help)
- Andrea di Michele (2014). "Trento, Bolzano e Innsbruck: l'occupazione militare italiana del Tirolo (1918–1920)" [Trento, Bolzano and Innsbruck: The Italian Military Occupation of Tyrol (1918–1920)] (PDF). Trento e Trieste. Percorsi degli Italiani d'Austria dal '48 all'annessione (in Italian): 436–437. Archived from the original (PDF) on 2 October 2018.
La forza numerica del contingente italiano variò con il passare dei mesi e al suo culmine raggiunse i 20–22.000 uomini. [The numerical strength of the Italian contingent varied with the passing of months and at its peak reached 20–22,000 men.]
- "Clairière de l'Armistice" (in French). Ville de Compiègne. Archived from the original on 27 August 2007.
- Baker 2006.
- Chickering 2004, pp. 185–188.
- Hardach, Gerd (1977). The First World War, 1914–1918. Berkeley: University of California Press. p. 153. ISBN 0-520-03060-5, using estimated made by Menderhausen, H. (1941). The Economics of War. New York: Prentice-Hall. p. 305. OCLC 774042.
- "France's oldest WWI veteran dies" Archived 28 October 2016 at the Wayback Machine, BBC News, 20 January 2008.
- Hastedt, Glenn P. (2009). Encyclopedia of American Foreign Policy. Infobase Publishing. p. 483. ISBN 978-1-4381-0989-3.
- Murrin, John; Johnson, Paul; McPherson, James; Gerstle, Gary; Fahs, Alice (2010). Liberty, Equality, Power: A History of the American People. II. Cengage Learning. p. 622. ISBN 978-0-495-90383-3.
- "Harding Ends War; Signs Peace Decree at Senator's Home. Thirty Persons Witness Momentous Act in Frelinghuysen Living Room at Raritan". The New York Times. 3 July 1921.
- "No. 31773". The London Gazette. 10 February 1920. p. 1671.
- "No. 31991". The London Gazette. 23 July 1920. pp. 7765–7766.
- "No. 13627". The London Gazette. 27 August 1920. p. 1924.
- "No. 32421". The London Gazette. 12 August 1921. pp. 6371–6372.
- "No. 32964". The London Gazette. 12 August 1924. pp. 6030–6031.
- "Dates on war memorials" (PDF). War Memorials Trust. Retrieved 4 January 2021.
- "The past and future(s) of environmental peacebuilding". International Affairs.
- Magliveras 1999, pp. 8–12.
- Northedge 1986, pp. 35–36.
- Morrow, John H. (2005). The Great War: An Imperial History. London: Routledge. p. 290. ISBN 978-0-415-20440-8.
- Schulze, Hagen (1998). Germany: A New History. Harvard U.P. p. 204.
- Ypersele, Laurence Van (2012). Horne, John (ed.). Mourning and Memory, 1919–45. A Companion to World War I. Wiley. p. 584.
- "The Surrogate Hegemon in Polish Postcolonial Discourse Ewa Thompson, Rice University" (PDF).
- Kocsis, Károly; Hodosi, Eszter Kocsisné (1998). Ethnic Geography of the Hungarian Minorities in the Carpathian Basin. p. 19. ISBN 978-963-7395-84-0.
- "Appeals to Americans to Pray for Serbians" (PDF). The New York Times. 27 July 1918.
- "Serbia Restored" (PDF). The New York Times. 5 November 1918.
- Simpson, Matt (22 August 2009). "The Minor Powers During World War One – Serbia". firstworldwar.com.
- "'ANZAC Day' in London; King, Queen, and General Birdwood at Services in Abbey". The New York Times. 26 April 1916.
- Australian War Memorial. "The ANZAC Day tradition". Australian War Memorial. Archived from the original on 1 May 2008. Retrieved 2 May 2008.
- Canadian War Museum. "Vimy Ridge". Canadian War Museum. Retrieved 22 October 2008.
- "The War's Impact on Canada". Canadian War Museum. Retrieved 22 October 2008.
- "Canada's last WW1 vet gets his citizenship back". CBC News. 9 May 2008. Archived from the original on 11 May 2008.
- Documenting Democracy Archived 20 May 2016 at the Wayback Machine. Retrieved 31 March 2012
- "Balfour Declaration (United Kingdom 1917)". Encyclopædia Britannica.
- "Timeline of The Jewish Agency for Israel:1917–1919". The Jewish Agency for Israel. Archived from the original on 20 May 2013. Retrieved 29 August 2013.
- Doughty 2005.
- Hooker 1996.
- Muller 2008.
- Kaplan 1993.
- Salibi 1993.
- Evans 2005
- "Pre-State Israel: Under Ottoman Rule (1517–1917)". Jewish Virtual Library. Retrieved 30 December 2008.
- Gelvin 2005
- Isaac & Hosh 1992.
- Sanhueza, Carlos (2011). "El debate sobre "el embrujamiento alemán" y el papel de la ciencia alemana hacia fines del siglo XIX en Chile" (PDF). Ideas viajeras y sus objetos. El intercambio científico entre Alemania y América austral. Madrid–Frankfurt am Main: Iberoamericana–Vervuert (in Spanish). pp. 29–40.
- Penny, H. Glenn (2017). "Material Connections: German Schools, Things, and Soft Power in Argentina and Chile from the 1880s through the Interwar Period". Comparative Studies in Society and History. 59 (3): 519–549. doi:10.1017/S0010417517000159. S2CID 149372568.
- Kitchen 2000, p. 22.
- Sévillia, Jean, Histoire Passionnée de la France, 2013, p.395
- Howard, N.P. (1993). The Social and Political Consequences of the Allied Food Blockade of Germany, 1918–19. German History. 11. pp. 161–188. table p. 166, with 271,000 excess deaths in 1918 and 71,000 in the first half of 1919 while the blockade was still in effect.
- Saadi 2009.
- Patenaude, Bertrand M. (30 January 2007). "Food as a Weapon". Hoover Digest. Hoover Institution. Archived from the original on 19 July 2008. Retrieved 14 August 2014.
- Ball 1996, pp. 16, 211.
- "The Russians are coming (Russian influence in Harbin, Manchuria, China; economic relations)". The Economist (US). 14 January 1995. Archived from the original on 10 May 2007. (via Highbeam.com)
- Souter 2000, p. 354.
- Taliaferro, William Hay (1972). Medicine and the War. p. 65. ISBN 978-0-8369-2629-3.
- Knobler et al. 2005.
- Kamps, Bernd Sebastian; Reyes-Terán, Gustavo. Influenza. Influenza Report. Flying Publisher. ISBN 978-3-924774-51-6. Retrieved 17 November 2009.
- Ansart, Séverine; Pelat, Camille; Boelle, Pierre‐Yves; Carrat, Fabrice; Flahault, Antoine; Valleron, Alain‐Jacques (May 2009). "Mortality burden of the 1918–1919 influenza pandemic in Europe". Influenza and Other Respiratory Viruses. Wiley. 3 (3): 99–106. doi:10.1111/j.1750-2659.2009.00080.x. PMC 4634693. PMID 19453486.
- K. von Economo.Wiener klinische Wochenschrift, 10 May 1917, 30: 581–585. Die Encephalitis lethargica. Leipzig and Vienna, Franz Deuticke, 1918.
- Reid, A.H.; McCall, S.; Henry, J.M.; Taubenberger, J.K. (2001). "Experimenting on the Past: The Enigma of von Economo's Encephalitis Lethargica". J. Neuropathol. Exp. Neurol. 60 (7): 663–670. doi:10.1093/jnen/60.7.663. PMID 11444794. S2CID 40754090.
- "Pogroms". Encyclopaedia Judaica. American-Israeli Cooperative Enterprise. Retrieved 17 November 2009.
- "Jewish Modern and Contemporary Periods (ca. 1700–1917)". Jewish Virtual Library. American-Israeli Cooperative Enterprise. Retrieved 17 November 2009.
- "The Diaspora Welcomes the Pope" Archived 4 June 2012 at the Wayback Machine, Der Spiegel Online. 28 November 2006.
- Rummel, R.J. (1998). "The Holocaust in Comparative and Historical Perspective". Idea Journal of Social Issues. 3 (2).
- Hedges, Chris (17 September 2000). "A Few Words in Greek Tell of a Homeland Lost". The New York Times.
- Hartcup 1988, p. 154.
- Hartcup 1988, pp. 82–86.
- Sterling, Christopher H. (2008). Military Communications: From Ancient Times to the 21st Century. Santa Barbara: ABC-CLIO. ISBN 978-1-85109-732-6 p. 444.
- Mosier 2001, pp. 42–48.
- Jager, Herbert (2001). German Artillery of World War One. Crowood Press. p. 224. ISBN 978-1-86126-403-9.
- Hartcup 1988.
- Raudzens 1990, p. 421.
- Wilfred Owen: poems, (Faber and Faber, 2004)
- Raudzens 1990.
- Heller 1984.
- Postwar pulp novels on future "gas wars" included Reginald Glossop's 1932 novel Ghastly Dew and Neil Bell's 1931 novel The Gas War of 1940.
- on YouTube
- Lawrence Sondhaus, The Great War at Sea: A Naval History of the First World War (2014).
- Lawson, Eric; Lawson, Jane (2002). The First Air Campaign: August 1914– November 1918. Da Capo Press. p. 123. ISBN 978-0-306-81213-2.
- Cross 1991
- Cross 1991, pp. 56–57.
- "Manfred von Richthofen". theaerodrome.com. Retrieved 21 April 2019.
- Winter 1983.
- Johnson 2001
- Halpern, Paul G. (1994). A Naval History of World War I. Routledge, p. 301; ISBN 1-85728-498-4
- Hadley, Michael L. (1995). Count Not the Dead: The Popular Image of the German Submarine. McGill-Queen's Press – MQUP, p. 36; ISBN 0-7735-1282-9.
- Davies, J.D. (2013). Britannia's Dragon: A Naval History of Wales. History Press Limited. p. 158. ISBN 978-0-7524-9410-4.
- "The blockade of Germany". nationalarchives.gov.uk. The National Archives. Retrieved 11 November 2018.
- Raico, Ralph (26 April 2010). "The Blockade and Attempted Starvation of Germany". Mises Institute.
- Grebler, Leo (1940). The Cost of the World War to Germany and Austria–Hungary. Yale University Press. p. 78
- Cox, Mary Elisabeth (21 September 2014). "Hunger games: or how the Allied blockade in the First World War deprived German children of nutrition, and Allied food aid subsequently saved them. Abstract". The Economic History Review. 68 (2): 600–631. doi:10.1111/ehr.12070. ISSN 0013-0117. S2CID 142354720.
- Marks 2013.
- Devlin, Patrick (1975). Too Proud to Fight: Woodrow Wilson's Neutrality. New York: Oxford University Press. pp. 193–195. ISBN 978-0-19-215807-9.
- Fitzgerald, Gerard (April 2008). "Chemical Warfare and Medical Response During World War I". American Journal of Public Health. 98 (4): 611–625. doi:10.2105/AJPH.2007.11930. PMC 2376985. PMID 18356568.
- Schneider, Barry R. (28 February 1999). Future War and Counterproliferation: US Military Responses to NBC. Praeger. p. 84. ISBN 0-275-96278-4.
- Taylor, Telford (1993). The Anatomy of the Nuremberg Trials: A Personal Memoir. Little, Brown and Company. p. 34. ISBN 978-0-316-83400-1. Retrieved 20 June 2013.
- Graham, Thomas; Lavera, Damien J. (2003). Cornerstones of Security: Arms Control Treaties in the Nuclear Era. University of Washington Press. pp. 7–9. ISBN 978-0-295-98296-0. Retrieved 5 July 2013.
- Haber, L.F. (20 February 1986). The Poisonous Cloud: Chemical Warfare in the First World War. Clarendon Press. pp. 106–108. ISBN 978-0-19-858142-0.
- Vilensky, Joel A. (20 February 1986). Dew of Death: The Story of Lewisite, America's World War I Weapon of Mass destruction. Indiana University Press. pp. 78–80. ISBN 978-0-253-34612-4.
- Ellison, D. Hank (24 August 2007). Handbook of Chemical and Biological Warfare Agents (2nd ed.). CRC Press. pp. 567–570. ISBN 978-0-8493-1434-6.
- Boot, Max (2007). War Made New: Weapons, Warriors, and the Making of the Modern World. Gotham. pp. 245–250. ISBN 978-1-59240-315-8.
- Johnson, Jeffrey Allan (2017). "Military-Industrial Interactions in the Development of Chemical Warfare, 1914–1918: Comparing National Cases Within the Technological System of the Great War". In Friedrich, Bretislav; Hoffmann, Dieter; Renn, Jürgen; Schmaltz, Florian; Wolf, Martin (eds.). One Hundred Years of Chemical Warfare: Research, Deployment, Consequences. Springer Science+Business Media. pp. 147–148. doi:10.1007/978-3-319-51664-6. ISBN 978-3-319-51664-6.
- Henry Morgenthau (1918). "XXV: Talaat Tells Why He "Deports" the Armenians". Ambassador Mogenthau's story. Brigham Young University.
- Honzík, Miroslav; Honzíková, Hana (1984). 1914/1918, Léta zkázy a naděje. Czech Republic: Panorama.
- International Association of Genocide Scholars (13 June 2005). "Open Letter to the Prime Minister of Turkey Recep Tayyip Erdoğan". Archived from the original on 6 October 2007.
- Vartparonian, Paul Leverkuehn; Kaiser (2008). A German officer during the Armenian genocide: a biography of Max von Scheubner-Richter. translated by Alasdair Lean; with a preface by Jorge and a historical introduction by Hilmar. London: Taderon Press for the Gomidas Institute. ISBN 978-1-903656-81-5.
- Ferguson 2006, p. 177.
- "International Association of Genocide Scholars" (PDF). Archived from the original (PDF) on 10 October 2017. Retrieved 12 March 2013.
- Fromkin 1989, pp. 212–215.
- International Association of Genocide Scholars. "Resolution on genocides committed by the Ottoman empire" (PDF). Archived from the original (PDF) on 22 April 2008.
- Gaunt, David (2006). Massacres, Resistance, Protectors: Muslim-Christian Relations in Eastern Anatolia during World War I. Piscataway, New Jersey: Gorgias Press.
- Schaller, Dominik J.; Zimmerer, Jürgen (2008). "Late Ottoman genocides: the dissolution of the Ottoman Empire and Young Turkish population and extermination policies – introduction". Journal of Genocide Research. 10 (1): 7–14. doi:10.1080/14623520801950820. S2CID 71515470.
- Whitehorn, Alan (2015). The Armenian Genocide: The Essential Reference Guide: The Essential Reference Guide. ABC-CLIO. pp. 83, 218. ISBN 978-1-61069-688-3.
- "Pogroms". Encyclopaedia Judaica. Jewish Virtual Library. Retrieved 17 November 2009.
- Mawdsley 2007, p. 287.
- Horne & Kramer 2001, ch 1–2, esp. p. 76.
- The claim of franc-tireurs in Belgium has been rejected: Horne & Kramer 2001, ch 3–4
- Horne & Kramer 2001, ch 5–8.
- Keegan 1998, pp. 82–83.
- "Search Results (+(war:"worldwari")) : Veterans History Project". American Folklife Center, Library of Congress. Retrieved 23 May 2017.
- Phillimore & Bellot 1919, pp. 4–64.
- Ferguson 1999, pp. 368–369.
- Blair 2005.
- Cook 2006, pp. 637–665.
- "Максим Оськин – Неизвестные трагедии Первой мировой Пленные Дезертиры Беженцы – стр 24 – Читаем онлайн". Profismart.ru. Archived from the original on 17 April 2013. Retrieved 13 March 2013.
- Speed 1990.
- Ferguson 1999, Chapter 13.
- Morton 1992.
- Bass 2002, p. 107.
- "The Mesopotamia campaign". British National Archives. Retrieved 10 March 2007.
- "Prisoners of Turkey: Men of Kut Driven along like beasts". Stolen Years: Australian Prisoners of War. Australian War Memorial. Archived from the original on 8 January 2009. Retrieved 10 December 2008.
- "ICRC in WWI: overview of activities". Icrc.org. Archived from the original on 19 July 2010. Retrieved 15 June 2010.
- "Germany: Notes". Time. 1 September 1924. Archived from the original on 13 November 2007. Retrieved 15 June 2010.
- Tucker & Roberts 2005, p. 1189.
- Tucker & Roberts 2005, p. 1001
- Tucker & Roberts 2005, p. 117.
- Mukhtar, Mohammed (2003). Historical Dictionary of Somalia. Scarecrow Press. p. 126. ISBN 978-0-8108-6604-1. Retrieved 28 February 2017.
- "How Ethiopian prince scuppered Germany's WW1 plans". BBC News. 25 September 2016. Retrieved 28 February 2017.
- Ficquet, Éloi (2014). The Life and Times of Lïj Iyasu of Ethiopia: New Insights. LIT Verlag Münster. p. 185. ISBN 978-3-643-90476-8.
- Zewde, Bahru. A history. p. 126.
- Ficquet, Éloi (2014). The Life and Times of Lïj Iyasu of Ethiopia: New Insights. LIT Verlag Münster. p. 62. ISBN 978-3-643-90476-8.
- Tucker & Roberts 2005, p. 1069.
- Tucker & Roberts 2005, p. 884.
- Tucker & Roberts 2005, p. 335.
- Tucker & Roberts 2005, p. 219.
- Tucker & Roberts 2005, p. 209.
- Tucker & Roberts 2005, p. 596
- Tucker & Roberts 2005, p. 826.
- Denis Mack Smith. 1997. Modern Italy: A Political History. Ann Arbor: The University of Michigan Press. p. 284.
- Aubert, Roger (1981). "Chapter 37: The Outbreak of World War I". In Hubert Jedin; John Dolan (eds.). History of the Church. The Church in the industrial age. 9. Translated by Resch, Margit. London: Burns & Oates. p. 521. ISBN 978-0-86012-091-9.
- "Who's Who – Pope Benedict XV". firstworldwar.com. 22 August 2009.
- "Merely For the Record": The Memoirs of Donald Christopher Smith 1894–1980. By Donald Christopher Smith. Edited by John William Cox, Jr. Bermuda.
- Karp 1979
- Pennell, Catriona (2012). A Kingdom United: Popular Responses to the Outbreak of the First World War in Britain and Ireland. Oxford: Oxford University Press. ISBN 978-0-19-959058-2.
- Tucker & Roberts 2005, p. 584.
- O'Halpin, Eunan, The Decline of the Union: British Government in Ireland, 1892–1920, (Dublin, 1987)
- Lehmann & van der Veer 1999, p. 62.
- Brock, Peter, These Strange Criminals: An Anthology of Prison Memoirs by Conscientious Objectors to Military Service from the Great War to the Cold War, p. 14, Toronto: University of Toronto Press, 2004, ISBN 0-8020-8707-8
- "Soviet Union – Uzbeks". Country-data.com. Retrieved 13 March 2013.
- Richard Pipes (1990). The Russian Revolution. Knopf Doubleday. p. 407. ISBN 978-0-307-78857-3.
- Seton-Watson, Christopher. 1967. Italy from Liberalism to Fascism: 1870 to 1925. London: Methuen & Co. Ltd. p. 471
- Cockfield 1997, pp. 171–237.
- Sowers, Steven W. "Legacy of 1917 and 1918". Michigan State University.
- Ward, Alan J. (1974). "Lloyd George and the 1918 Irish conscription crisis". Historical Journal. 17 (1): 107–129. doi:10.1017/S0018246X00005689.
- "The Conscription Crisis". CBC. 2001.
- "Commonwealth Parliament from 1901 to World War I". Parliament of Australia. 4 May 2015. Retrieved 15 December 2018.
- J.M. Main, Conscription: the Australian debate, 1901–1970 (1970) abstract Archived 7 July 2015 at archive.today
- Havighurst 1985, p. 131.
- Chelmsford, J.E. "Clergy and Man-Power", The Times 15 April 1918, p. 12
- Chambers, John Whiteclay (1987). To Raise an Army: The Draft Comes to Modern America. New York: The Free Press. ISBN 0-02-905820-1.
- Zinn, Howard (2003). A People's History of the United States. Harper Collins. p. 134.[edition needed]
- Hastings, Max (2013). Catastrophe: Europe goes to War 1914. London: Collins. pp. 30, 140. ISBN 978-0-00-746764-8.
- Stevenson 1988, p. [page needed].
- Zeman, Z. A. B. (1971). Diplomatic History of the First World War. London: Weidenfeld and Nicolson. ISBN 0-297-00300-3.
- See Carnegie Endowment for International Peace (1921). Scott, James Brown (ed.). Official Statements of War Aims and Peace Proposals: December 1916 to November 1918. Washington, D.C., The Endowment.
- Neiberg, Michael (2007). The World War I Reader. p. 1.
- Jones, Heather (2013). "As the centenary approaches: the regeneration of First World War historiography". Historical Journal. 56 (3): 857–878 [p. 858]. doi:10.1017/S0018246X13000216.
- see Christoph Cornelissen, and Arndt Weinrich, eds. Writing the Great War - The Historiography of World War I from 1918 to the Present (2020) free download; full coverage for major countries.
- "John McCrae". Nature. Historica. 100 (2521): 487–488. 1918. Bibcode:1918Natur.100..487.. doi:10.1038/100487b0. S2CID 4275807.
- David, Evans (1918). "John McCrae". Nature. 100 (2521): 487–488. Bibcode:1918Natur.100..487.. doi:10.1038/100487b0. S2CID 4275807.
- "Monumental Undertaking". kclibrary.org. 21 September 2015.
- "Commemoration website". 1914.org. Archived from the original on 8 February 2014. Retrieved 28 February 2014.
- "French, German Presidents Mark World War I Anniversary". France News.Net. Retrieved 3 August 2014.
- "Armistice Day: Macron and Merkel mark end of World War One". BBC News. 10 November 2018. Retrieved 30 March 2021.
- Sheftall, Mark David (2010). Altered Memories of the Great War: Divergent Narratives of Britain, Australia, New Zealand, and Canada. London: I. B. Tauris. ISBN 978-1-84511-883-9.
- Hynes, Samuel Lynn (1991). A war imagined: the First World War and English culture. Atheneum. pp. i–xii. ISBN 978-0-689-12128-9.
- Todman 2005, pp. 153–221.
- Fussell, Paul (2000). The Great War and modern memory. Oxford University Press. pp. 1–78. ISBN 978-0-19-513332-5. Retrieved 18 May 2010.
- Todman 2005, pp. xi–xv.
- Wohl 1979.
- Tucker & Roberts 2005, pp. 108–1086.
- Cole, Laurence (2012). "Geteiltes Land und getrennte Erzählungen. Erinnerungskulturen des Ersten Weltkrieges in den Nachfolgeregionen des Kronlandes Tirol". In Obermair, Hannes (ed.). Regionale Zivilgesellschaft in Bewegung – Cittadini innanzi tutto. Festschrift für Hans Heiss. Vienna-Bozen: Folio Verlag. pp. 502–31. ISBN 978-3-85256-618-4. OCLC 913003568.
- Kitchen, Martin. "The Ending of World War One, and the Legacy of Peace". BBC.
- "World War II". Encyclopædia Britannica. Retrieved 12 November 2009.
- Chickering 2004.
- Rubinstein, W.D. (2004). Genocide: a history. Pearson Education. p. 7. ISBN 978-0-582-50601-5.
- Henn, Peter (9 March 2015). "Britain Finally pays off last of First World War debt as George Osborne redeems £1.9bn". Daily Express.
- Noakes, Lucy (2006). Women in the British Army: War and the Gentle Sex, 1907–1948. Abingdon, England: Routledge. p. 48. ISBN 978-0-415-39056-9.
- Green 1938, p. cxxvi.
- Anton Kaes; Martin Jay; Edward Dimendberg, eds. (1994). "The Treaty of Versailles: The Reparations Clauses". The Weimar Republic Sourcebook. University of California Press. p. 8. ISBN 978-0-520-90960-1.
- Marks 1978, pp. 231–232
- Marks 1978, p. 237
- Marks 1978, pp. 223–234
- Stone, Norman (2008). World War One: A Short History. London: Penguin. ISBN 978-0-14-103156-9.
- Marks 1978, p. 233
- Hall, Allan (28 September 2010). "First World War officially ends". The Telegraph. Berlin. Retrieved 15 March 2017.
- Suddath, Claire (4 October 2010). "Why Did World War I Just End?". Time. Archived from the original on 5 October 2010. Retrieved 1 July 2013.
- "World War I to finally end for Germany this weekend". CNN. 30 September 2010. Retrieved 15 March 2017.
- MacMillan, Margaret (25 December 2010). "Ending the War to End All Wars". The New York Times. Retrieved 15 March 2017.
- "From Wristwatches To Radio, How World War I Ushered in the Modern World". NPR.
- Ayers, Leonard Porter (1919). The War with Germany: A Statistical Summary. Government Printing Office.
- Bade, Klaus J.; Brown, Allison (tr.) (2003). Migration in European History. The making of Europe. Oxford: Blackwell. ISBN 978-0-631-18939-8. OCLC 52695573. (translated from the German)
- Baker, Kevin (June 2006). "Stabbed in the Back! The past and future of a right-wing myth". Harper's Magazine.
- Barry, J.M. (2004). The Great Influenza: The Epic Story of the Greatest Plague in History. Viking Penguin. ISBN 978-0-670-89473-4.
- Bass, Gary Jonathan (2002). Stay the Hand of Vengeance: The Politics of War Crimes Tribunals. Princeton, New Jersey: Princeton University Press. p. 424. ISBN 978-0-691-09278-2. OCLC 248021790.
- Blair, Dale (2005). No Quarter: Unlawful Killing and Surrender in the Australian War Experience, 1915–1918. Charnwood, Australia: Ginninderra Press. ISBN 978-1-74027-291-9. OCLC 62514621.
- Brands, Henry William (1997). T.R.: The Last Romantic. New York: Basic Books. ISBN 978-0-465-06958-3. OCLC 36954615.
- Braybon, Gail (2004). Evidence, History, and the Great War: Historians and the Impact of 1914–18. Berghahn Books. p. 8. ISBN 978-1-57181-801-0.
- Brown, Judith M. (1994). Modern India: The Origins of an Asian Democracy. Oxford and New York: Oxford University Press. ISBN 978-0-19-873113-9.
- Brown, Malcolm (1998). 1918: Year of Victory (1999 ed.). Pan. ISBN 978-0-330-37672-3.
- Butcher, Tim (2014). The Trigger: Hunting the Assassin Who Brought the World to War (2015 ed.). Vintage. ISBN 978-0099581338.
- Chickering, Rodger (2004). Imperial Germany and the Great War, 1914–1918. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press. ISBN 978-0-521-83908-2. OCLC 55523473.
- Christie, Norm M (1997). The Canadians at Cambrai and the Canal du Nord, August–September 1918. CEF Books. ISBN 978-1-896979-18-2.
- Clayton, Anthony (2003). Paths of Glory; the French Army 1914-1918. Cassell. ISBN 978-0304359493.
- Clark, Charles Upson (1927). Bessarabia, Russia and Roumania on the Black Sea. New York: Dodd, Mead. OCLC 150789848.
- Clark, Christopher (2013). The Sleepwalkers: How Europe Went to War in 1914. HarperCollins. ISBN 978-0-06-219922-5.
- Cockfield, Jamie H. (1997). With snow on their boots: The tragic odyssey of the Russian Expeditionary Force in France during World War I. Palgrave Macmillan. ISBN 978-0-312-22082-2.
- Coffman, Edward M. (1969). The War to End All Wars: The American Military Experience in World War I (1998 ed.). OUP. ISBN 978-0196317243.
- Conlon, Joseph M. The historical impact of epidemic typhus (PDF). Montana State University. Archived from the original (PDF) on 11 June 2010. Retrieved 21 April 2009.
- Coogan, Tim (2009). Ireland in the 20th Century. Random House. ISBN 978-0-09-941522-0.
- Cook, Tim (2006). "The politics of surrender: Canadian soldiers and the killing of prisoners in the First World War". The Journal of Military History. 70 (3): 637–665. doi:10.1353/jmh.2006.0158. S2CID 155051361.
- Cooper, John Milton (2009). Woodrow Wilson: A Biography. Alfred Knopf. ISBN 978-0307265418.
- Crisp, Olga (1976). Studies in the Russian Economy before 1914. Palgrave Macmillan. ISBN 978-0333169070.
- Cross, Wilbur L. (1991). Zeppelins of World War I. New York: Paragon Press. ISBN 978-1-55778-382-0. OCLC 22860189.
- Crowe, David (2001). The Essentials of European History: 1914 to 1935, World War I and Europe in crisis. Research and Education Association. ISBN 978-0-87891-710-5.
- DiNardo, Richard (2015). Invasion: The Conquest of Serbia, 1915. Santa Barbara, California: Praeger. ISBN 978-1-4408-0092-4.
- Djokić, Dejan (2003). Yugoslavism: histories of a failed idea, 1918–1992. London: Hurst. OCLC 51093251.
- Donko, Wilhelm (2012). A Brief History of the Austrian Navy. epubli GmbH. ISBN 978-3844221299.
- Doughty, Robert A. (2005). Pyrrhic victory: French strategy and operations in the Great War. Harvard University Press. ISBN 978-0-674-01880-8.
- Dupuy, R. Ernest and Trevor N. (1993). The Harper's Encyclopedia of Military History (4th ed.). Harper Collins Publishers. ISBN 978-0-06-270056-8.
- Erickson, Edward J. (2001). Ordered to Die: A History of the Ottoman Army in the First World War. Contributions in Military Studies. 201. Westport, Connecticut: Greenwood Press. ISBN 978-0-313-31516-9. OCLC 43481698.
- Evans, Leslie (2005). Future of Iraq, Israel-Palestine Conflict, and Central Asia Weighed at International Conference. UCLA International Institute. Archived from the original on 24 May 2008. Retrieved 30 December 2008.
- Falls, Cyril Bentham (1960). The First World War. London: Longmans. ISBN 978-1-84342-272-3. OCLC 460327352.
- Farwell, Byron (1989). The Great War in Africa, 1914–1918. W.W. Norton. ISBN 978-0-393-30564-7.
- Fay, Sidney B (1930). The Origins of the World War; Volume I (2nd ed.).
- Ferguson, Niall (1999). The Pity of War. New York: Basic Books. ISBN 978-0-465-05711-5. OCLC 41124439.
- Ferguson, Niall (2006). The War of the World: Twentieth-Century Conflict and the Descent of the West. New York: Penguin Press. ISBN 978-1-59420-100-4.
- Finestone, Jeffrey; Massie, Robert K. (1981). The last courts of Europe. JM Dent & Sons. ISBN 978-0460045193.
- Fromkin, David (1989). A Peace to End All Peace: The Fall of the Ottoman Empire and the Creation of the Modern Middle East. New York: Henry Holt and Co. ISBN 978-0-8050-0857-9.
- Fromkin, David (2004). Europe's Last Summer: Who Started the Great War in 1914?. Alfred A. Knopf. ISBN 978-0-375-41156-4. OCLC 53937943.
- Gelvin, James L. (2005). The Israel-Palestine Conflict: One Hundred Years of War. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press. ISBN 978-0-521-85289-0. OCLC 59879560.
- Grant, R.G. (2005). Battle: A Visual Journey Through 5,000 Years of Combat. DK Publishing. ISBN 978-0-7566-5578-5.
- Gray, Randal; Argyle, Christopher (1990). Chronicle of the First World War. New York: Facts on File. ISBN 978-0-8160-2595-4. OCLC 19398100.
- Gilbert, Martin (1994). First World War. Stoddart Publishing. ISBN 978-07737-2848-6.
- Goodspeed, Donald James (1985). The German Wars 1914–1945. New York: Random House; Bonanza. ISBN 978-0-517-46790-9.
- Gray, Randal (1991). Kaiserschlacht 1918: the final German offensive. Osprey. ISBN 978-1-85532-157-1.
- Green, John Frederick Norman (1938). "Obituary: Albert Ernest Kitson". Geological Society Quarterly Journal. 94.
- Grotelueschen, Mark Ethan (2006). The AEF Way of War: The American Army and Combat in World War I. Cambridge University Press. ISBN 978-0521864343.
- Halpern, Paul G. (1995). A Naval History of World War I. New York: Routledge. ISBN 978-1-85728-498-0. OCLC 60281302.
- Hardach, Gerd (1977). The First World War, 1914–1918. Allne Lane. ISBN 978-0713910247.
- Harris, J.P. (2008). Douglas Haig and the First World War (2009 ed.). Cambridge: CUP. ISBN 978-0-521-89802-7.
- Hartcup, Guy (1988). The War of Invention; Scientific Developments, 1914–18. Brassey's Defence Publishers. ISBN 978-0-08-033591-9.
- Havighurst, Alfred F. (1985). Britain in transition: the twentieth century (4th ed.). University of Chicago Press. ISBN 978-0-226-31971-1.
- Heller, Charles E. (1984). Chemical warfare in World War I : the American experience, 1917–1918. Fort Leavenworth, Kansas: Combat Studies Institute. OCLC 123244486. Archived from the original on 4 July 2007.
- Herwig, Holger (1988). "The Failure of German Sea Power, 1914–1945: Mahan, Tirpitz, and Raeder Reconsidered". The International History Review. 10 (1): 68–105. doi:10.1080/07075332.1988.9640469. JSTOR 40107090.
- Heyman, Neil M. (1997). World War I. Guides to historic events of the twentieth century. Westport, Connecticut: Greenwood Press. ISBN 978-0-313-29880-6. OCLC 36292837.
- Hickey, Michael (2003). The Mediterranean Front 1914–1923. The First World War. 4. New York: Routledge. pp. 60–65. ISBN 978-0-415-96844-7. OCLC 52375688.
- Hinterhoff, Eugene (1984). "The Campaign in Armenia". In Young, Peter (ed.). Marshall Cavendish Illustrated Encyclopedia of World War I. ii. New York: Marshall Cavendish. ISBN 978-0-86307-181-2.
- Holmes, T.M. (April 2014). "Absolute Numbers: The Schlieffen Plan as a Critique of German Strategy in 1914". War in History. XXI (2): 194, 211. ISSN 1477-0385.
- Hooker, Richard (1996). The Ottomans. Washington State University. Archived from the original on 8 October 1999.
- Horne, Alistair (1964). The Price of Glory (1993 ed.). Penguin. ISBN 978-0-14-017041-2.
- Horne, John; Kramer, Alan (2001). German Atrocities, 1914: A History of Denial. Yale University Press. OCLC 47181922.
- Hovannisian, Richard G. (1967). Armenia on the Road to Independence, 1918. Berkeley: University of California Press. ISBN 978-0-520-00574-7.
- Hull, Isabel Virginia (2006). Absolute destruction: military culture and the practices of war in Imperial Germany. Cornell University Press. ISBN 978-0-8014-7293-0.
- Humphries, Mark Osborne (2007). ""Old Wine in New Bottles": A Comparison of British and Canadian Preparations for the Battle of Arras". In Hayes, Geoffrey; Iarocci, Andrew; Bechthold, Mike (eds.). Vimy Ridge: A Canadian Reassessment. Waterloo: Wilfrid Laurier University Press. ISBN 978-0-88920-508-6.
- Inglis, David (1995). Vimy Ridge: 1917–1992, A Canadian Myth over Seventy Five Years (PDF). Burnaby: Simon Fraser University.
- Jackson, Julian (2018). A Certain Idea of France: The Life of Charles de Gaulle. Allen Lane. ISBN 978-1-84614-351-9.
- Isaac, Jad; Hosh, Leonardo (7–9 May 1992). Roots of the Water Conflict in the Middle East. University of Waterloo. Archived from the original on 28 September 2006.
- Johnson, James Edgar (2001). Full Circle: The Story of Air Fighting. London: Cassell. ISBN 978-0-304-35860-1. OCLC 45991828.
- Jones, Howard (2001). Crucible of Power: A History of US Foreign Relations Since 1897. Scholarly Resources Books. ISBN 978-0-8420-2918-6. OCLC 46640675.
- Kaplan, Robert D. (February 1993). "Syria: Identity Crisis". The Atlantic. Retrieved 30 December 2008.
- Karp, Walter (1979). The Politics of War (1st ed.). ISBN 978-0-06-012265-2. OCLC 4593327.
- Keegan, John (1998). The First World War. Hutchinson. ISBN 978-0-09-180178-6.
- Keenan, George (1986). The Fateful Alliance: France, Russia and the Coming of the First World War. Manchester University Press. ISBN 978-0-7190-1707-0.
- Keene, Jennifer D (2006). World War I. Daily Life Through History Series. Westport, Connecticut: Greenwood Press. p. 5. ISBN 978-0-313-33181-7. OCLC 70883191.
- Kernek, Sterling (December 1970). "The British Government's Reactions to President Wilson's 'Peace' Note of December 1916". The Historical Journal. 13 (4): 721–766. doi:10.1017/S0018246X00009481. JSTOR 2637713.
- Kitchen, Martin (2000) . Europe Between the Wars. New York: Longman. ISBN 978-0-582-41869-1. OCLC 247285240.
- Knobler, S. L.; Mack, A.; Mahmoud, A.; Lemon, S. M., eds. (2005). The Threat of Pandemic Influenza: Are We Ready? Workshop Summary. Contributors: Institute of Medicine; Board on Global Health; Forum on Microbial Threats. Washington DC: National Academies Press. doi:10.17226/11150. ISBN 978-0-309-09504-4. OCLC 57422232. PMID 20669448.
- Lehmann, Hartmut; van der Veer, Peter, eds. (1999). Nation and religion: perspectives on Europe and Asia. Princeton, New Jersey: Princeton University Press. ISBN 978-0-691-01232-2. OCLC 39727826.
- Lieven, Dominic (2016). Towards the Flame: Empire, War and the End of Tsarist Russia. Penguin. ISBN 978-0-14-139974-4.
- Love, Dave (May 1996). "The Second Battle of Ypres, April 1915". Sabretache. 26 (4).
- Ludendorff, Erich (1919). My War Memories, 1914–1918. OCLC 60104290. also published by Harper as "Ludendorff's Own Story, August 1914 – November 1918: The Great War from the Siege of Liège to the Signing of the Armistice as Viewed from the Grand Headquarters of the German Army" OCLC 561160 (original title Meine Kriegserinnerungen, 1914–1918)
- MacMillan, Margaret (2013). The War That Ended Peace: The Road to 1914. Profile Books. ISBN 978-0-8129-9470-4.
- MacMillan, Margaret (2001). Peacemakers; Six Months that Changed The World: The Paris Peace Conference of 1919 and Its Attempt to End War (2019 ed.). John Murray. ISBN 978-1529325263.
- Magliveras, Konstantinos D. (1999). Exclusion from Participation in International Organisations: The Law and Practice behind Member States' Expulsion and Suspension of Membership. Martinus Nijhoff Publishers. ISBN 978-90-411-1239-2.
- Marks, Sally (1978). "The Myths of Reparations". Central European History. 11 (3): 231–255. doi:10.1017/S0008938900018707.
- Marks, Sally (September 2013). "Mistakes and Myths: The Allies, Germany, and the Versailles Treaty, 1918–1921". The Journal of Modern History. 85 (3): 650–651. doi:10.1086/670825. S2CID 154166326.
- Martel, Gordon (2003). The Origins of the First World War (2016 ed.). Routledge. ISBN 978-1138928657.
- Martel, Gordon (2014). The Month that Changed the World: July 1914. OUP. ISBN 978-0199665389.
- Marshall, S. L. A.; Josephy, Alvin M. (1982). The American heritage history of World War I. American Heritage Pub. Co. : Bonanza Books : Distributed by Crown Publishers. ISBN 9780517385555. OCLC 1028047398.
- Mawdsley, Evan (2007). The Russian Civil War. New York: Pegasus Books. ISBN 978-1-68177-009-3.
- McLellan, Edwin N. The United States Marine Corps in the World War.
- McMeekin, Sean (2014). July 1914: Countdown to War. Icon Books. ISBN 978-1848316577.
- McMeekin, Sean (2015). The Ottoman Endgame: War, Revolution and the Making of the Modern Middle East, 1908-1923 (2016 ed.). Penguin. ISBN 978-0718199715.
- Medlicott, W.N. (1945). "Bismarck and the Three Emperors' Alliance, 1881–87". Transactions of the Royal Historical Society. 27: 61–83. doi:10.2307/3678575. JSTOR 3678575.
- Meyer, Gerald J (2006). A World Undone: The Story of the Great War 1914 to 1918. Random House. ISBN 978-0-553-80354-9.
- Millett, Allan Reed; Murray, Williamson (1988). Military Effectiveness. Boston: Allen Unwin. ISBN 978-0-04-445053-5. OCLC 220072268.
- Moll, Kendall D; Luebbert, Gregory M (1980). "Arms Race and Military Expenditure Models: A Review". The Journal of Conflict Resolution. 24 (1): 153–185. doi:10.1177/002200278002400107. JSTOR 173938. S2CID 155405415.
- Morton, Desmond (1992). Silent Battle: Canadian Prisoners of War in Germany, 1914–1919. Toronto: Lester Publishing. ISBN 978-1-895555-17-2. OCLC 29565680.
- Mosier, John (2001). "Germany and the Development of Combined Arms Tactics". Myth of the Great War: How the Germans Won the Battles and How the Americans Saved the Allies. New York: Harper Collins. ISBN 978-0-06-019676-9.
- Muller, Jerry Z. (March–April 2008). "Us and Them – The Enduring Power of Ethnic Nationalism". Foreign Affairs. Council on Foreign Relations. Retrieved 30 December 2008.
- Neiberg, Michael S. (2005). Fighting the Great War: A Global History. Cambridge, Massachusetts: Harvard University Press. ISBN 978-0-674-01696-5. OCLC 56592292.
- Nicholson, Gerald W.L. (1962). Canadian Expeditionary Force, 1914–1919: Official History of the Canadian Army in the First World War (1st ed.). Ottawa: Queens Printer and Controller of Stationary. OCLC 2317262. Archived from the original on 16 May 2007.
- Noakes, Lucy (2006). Women in the British Army: War and the Gentle Sex, 1907–1948. Routledge. ISBN 978-0-415-39056-9.
- Northedge, F.S. (1986). The League of Nations: Its Life and Times, 1920–1946. New York: Holmes & Meier. ISBN 978-0-7185-1316-0.
- Painter, David S. (2012). "Oil and the American Century". The Journal of American History. 99 (1): 24–39. doi:10.1093/jahist/jas073.
- Phillimore, George Grenville; Bellot, Hugh H.L. (1919). "Treatment of Prisoners of War". Transactions of the Grotius Society. 5: 47–64. OCLC 43267276.
- Pitt, Barrie (2003). 1918: The Last Act. Barnsley: Pen and Sword. ISBN 978-0-85052-974-6. OCLC 56468232.
- Porras-Gallo, M.; Davis, R.A., eds. (2014). "The Spanish Influenza Pandemic of 1918–1919: Perspectives from the Iberian Peninsula and the Americas". Rochester Studies in Medical History. 30. University of Rochester Press. ISBN 978-1-58046-496-3. Archived from the original on 22 January 2021. Retrieved 9 November 2020 – via Google Books.
- Price, Alfred (1980). Aircraft versus Submarine: the Evolution of the Anti-submarine Aircraft, 1912 to 1980. London: Jane's Publishing. ISBN 978-0-7106-0008-0. OCLC 10324173. Deals with technical developments, including the first dipping hydrophones
- Raudzens, George (October 1990). "War-Winning Weapons: The Measurement of Technological Determinism in Military History". The Journal of Military History. 54 (4): 403–434. doi:10.2307/1986064. JSTOR 1986064.
- Rickard, J. (5 March 2001). "Erich von Ludendorff [sic], 1865–1937, German General". Military History Encyclopedia on the Web. Retrieved 6 February 2008.
- Rickard, J. (27 August 2007). "The Ludendorff Offensives, 21 March–18 July 1918". historyofwar.org. Archived from the original on 10 October 2017. Retrieved 12 September 2018.
- Roden, Mike. "The Lost Generation – myth and reality". Aftermath – when the Boys Came Home. Archived from the original on 1 December 2009. Retrieved 6 November 2009.
- Saadi, Abdul-Ilah (12 February 2009). "Dreaming of Greater Syria". Al Jazeera. Retrieved 14 August 2014.
- Sachar, Howard Morley (1970). The emergence of the Middle East, 1914–1924. Allen Lane. ISBN 978-0-7139-0158-0. OCLC 153103197.
- Salibi, Kamal Suleiman (1993). "How it all began – A concise history of Lebanon". A House of Many Mansions – the history of Lebanon reconsidered. I.B. Tauris. ISBN 978-1-85043-091-9. OCLC 224705916.
- Schindler, J. (2003). "Steamrollered in Galicia: The Austro-Hungarian Army and the Brusilov Offensive, 1916". War in History. 10 (1): 27–59. doi:10.1191/0968344503wh260oa. S2CID 143618581.
- Schindler, John R. (2002). "Disaster on the Drina: The Austro-Hungarian Army in Serbia, 1914". War in History. 9 (2): 159–195. doi:10.1191/0968344502wh250oa. S2CID 145488166.
- Schreiber, Shane B (1977). Shock Army of the British Empire: The Canadian Corps in the Last 100 Days of the Great War (2004 ed.). Vanwell. ISBN 978-1-55125-096-0.
- Shanafelt, Gary W. (1985). The secret enemy: Austria-Hungary and the German alliance, 1914–1918. East European Monographs. ISBN 978-0-88033-080-0.
- Shapiro, Fred R.; Epstein, Joseph (2006). The Yale Book of Quotations. Yale University Press. ISBN 978-0-300-10798-2.
- Sheffield, Gary (2002). Forgotten Victory. Review. ISBN 978-0-7472-7157-4.
- Smith, David James (2010). One Morning in Sarajevo. Hachette UK. ISBN 978-0-297-85608-5.
He was photographed on the way to the station and the photograph has been reproduced many times in books and articles, claiming to depict the arrest of Gavrilo Princip. But there is no photograph of Gavro's arrest—this photograph shows the arrest of Behr.
- Souter, Gavin (2000). Lion & Kangaroo: the initiation of Australia. Melbourne: Text Publishing. OCLC 222801639.
- Smele, Jonathan. "War and Revolution in Russia 1914–1921". World Wars in-depth. BBC. Archived from the original on 23 October 2011. Retrieved 12 November 2009.
- Speed, Richard B, III (1990). Prisoners, Diplomats and the Great War: A Study in the Diplomacy of Captivity. New York: Greenwood Press. ISBN 978-0-313-26729-1. OCLC 20694547.
- Spreeuwenberg, P (2018). "Reassessing the Global Mortality Burden of the 1918 Influenza Pandemic". American Journal of Epidemiology. 187 (12): 2561–2567. doi:10.1093/aje/kwy191. PMC 7314216. PMID 30202996.
- Stevenson, David (1988). The First World War and International Politics. Oxford University Press. ISBN 0-19-873049-7.
- Stevenson, David (1996). Armaments and the Coming of War: Europe, 1904–1914. New York: Oxford University Press. ISBN 978-0-19-820208-0. OCLC 33079190.
- Stevenson, David (2004). Cataclysm: The First World War as Political Tragedy. New York: Basic Books. pp. 560pp. ISBN 978-0-465-08184-4. OCLC 54001282.
- Stevenson, David (2012). 1914–1918: The History of the First World War. Penguin. ISBN 978-0-71-819795-7.
- Stevenson, David (2016). Mahnken, Thomas (ed.). Land armaments in Europe, 1866-1914 in Arms Races in International Politics: From the Nineteenth to the Twenty-First Century. Oxford University Press. ISBN 978-0-19-873526-7.
- Stone, David (2014). The Kaiser's Army: The German Army in World War One. Conway. ISBN 978-1-84486-292-4.
- Strachan, Hew (2003). The First World War: Volume I: To Arms. New York: Viking. ISBN 978-0-670-03295-2. OCLC 53075929.
- Taylor, Alan John Percivale (1998). The First World War and its aftermath, 1914–1919. Century of Conflict, 1848–1948. London: Folio Society. OCLC 49988231.
- Taylor, John M. (Summer 2007). "Audacious Cruise of the Emden". The Quarterly Journal of Military History. 19 (4): 38–47. ISSN 0899-3718.
- Terraine, John (1963). Ordeal of Victory. Philadelphia: J.B. Lippincott. pp. 508pp. ISBN 978-0-09-068120-4. OCLC 1345833.
- Todman, Dan (2005). The Great War: Myth and Memory. A & C Black. ISBN 978-0-8264-6728-7.
- Tomasevich, Jozo (2001). War and Revolution in Yugoslavia: 1941–1945. Stanford University Press. ISBN 978-0-8047-7924-1. Retrieved 4 December 2013.
- Tschanz, David W. Typhus fever on the Eastern front in World War I. Montana State University. Archived from the original on 11 June 2010. Retrieved 12 November 2009.
- Tuchman, Barbara Wertheim (1966). The Zimmermann Telegram (2nd ed.). New York: Macmillan. ISBN 978-0-02-620320-3. OCLC 233392415.
- Tucker, Spencer C.; Roberts, Priscilla Mary (2005). Encyclopedia of World War I. Santa Barbara: ABC-Clio. ISBN 978-1-85109-420-2. OCLC 61247250.
- Tucker, Spencer C.; Wood, Laura Matysek; Murphy, Justin D. (1999). The European powers in the First World War: an encyclopedia. Taylor & Francis. ISBN 978-0-8153-3351-7.
- Turner, L.F.C. (1968). "The Russian Mobilization in 1914". Journal of Contemporary History. 3 (1): 65–88. doi:10.1177/002200946800300104. JSTOR 259967. S2CID 161629020.
- Velikonja, Mitja (2003). Religious Separation and Political Intolerance in Bosnia-Herzegovina. Texas A&M University Press. p. 141. ISBN 978-1-58544-226-3.
- von der Porten, Edward P. (1969). German Navy in World War II. New York: T.Y. Crowell. ISBN 978-0-213-17961-8. OCLC 164543865.
- Westwell, Ian (2004). World War I Day by Day. St. Paul, Minnesota: MBI Publishing. pp. 192pp. ISBN 978-0-7603-1937-6. OCLC 57533366.
- Williams, Rachel (2014). Dual Threat: The Spanish Influenza and World War I (PHD). University of Tennessee.
- Willmott, H.P. (2003). World War I. Dorling Kindersley. ISBN 978-0-7894-9627-0. OCLC 52541937.
- Winter, Denis (1983). The First of the Few: Fighter Pilots of the First World War. Penguin. ISBN 978-0-14-005256-5.
- Wohl, Robert (1979). The Generation of 1914 (3rd ed.). Harvard University Press. ISBN 978-0-674-34466-2.
- Zeldin, Theodore (1977). France, 1848–1945: Volume II: Intellect, Taste, and Anxiety (1986 ed.). Clarendon Press. ISBN 978-0198221258.
- Zieger, Robert H. (2001). America's Great War: World War I and the American experience. Rowman & Littlefield. ISBN 978-0-8476-9645-1.
- Zuber, Terence (2011). Inventing the Schlieffen Plan: German War Planning 1871–1914 (2014 ed.). OUP. ISBN 978-0-19-871805-5.
- Collins, Ross F., ed. (2008). World War I: Primary Documents on Events from 1914 to 1919. Greenwood Press.
- Hammond's Frontier Atlas of the World War. C. S. Hammond & Company. 1916. Containing Large Scale Maps of All the Battle Fronts of Europe and Asia, Together With a Military Map of the United States.CS1 maint: postscript (link)
Historiography and memory
- Cornelissen, Christoph, and Arndt Weinrich, eds. Writing the Great War – The Historiography of World War I from 1918 to the Present (2020) online free
- Deak, John (2014). "The Great War and the Forgotten Realm: The Habsburg Monarchy and the First World War". Journal of Modern History. 86 (2): 336–380. doi:10.1086/675880. S2CID 143481172.
- Iriye, Akira (2014). "The Historiographic Impact of the Great War". Diplomatic History. 38 (4): 751–762. doi:10.1093/dh/dhu035.
- Jones, Heather (2013). "As the centenary approaches: the regeneration of First World War historiography". Historical Journal. 56 (3): 857–878. doi:10.1017/s0018246x13000216.
- Jones, Heather (2014). "Goodbye to all that?: Memory and meaning in the commemoration of the first world war". Juncture. 20 (4): 287–291. doi:10.1111/j.2050-5876.2014.00767.x.
- Kitchen, James E.; Miller, Alisa; Rowe, Laura, eds. (2011). Other Combatants, Other Fronts: Competing Histories of the First World War. Excerpt
- Kramer, Alan (2014). "Recent Historiography of the First World War – Part I". Journal of Modern European History. 12 (1): 5–27. doi:10.17104/1611-8944_2014_1_5. S2CID 202927667.
- Kramer, Alan (2014). "Recent Historiography of the First World War (Part II)". Journal of Modern European History. 12 (2): 155–174. doi:10.17104/1611-8944_2014_2_155. S2CID 146860980.
- Mulligan, William (2014). "The Trial Continues: New Directions in the Study of the Origins of the First World War". English Historical Review. 129 (538): 639–666. doi:10.1093/ehr/ceu139.
- Reynolds, David (2014). The Long Shadow: The Legacies of the Great War in the Twentieth Century. Excerpt and text search
- Sanborn, Joshua (2013). "Russian Historiography on the Origins of the First World War Since the Fischer Controversy". Journal of Contemporary History. 48 (2): 350–362. doi:10.1177/0022009412472716. S2CID 159618260.
- Sharp, Heather (2014). "Representing Australia's Involvement in the First World War: Discrepancies between Public Discourses and School History Textbooks from 1916 to 1936". Journal of Educational Media, Memory, and Society. 6 (1): 1–23. doi:10.3167/jemms.2014.060101.
- Trout, Stephen (2013). On the Battlefield of Memory: The First World War and American Remembrance, 1919–1941.
- Turan, Ömer (2014). ""Turkish Historiography of the First World War". Middle East". Critique. 23 (2): 241–257. doi:10.1080/19436149.2014.905079. S2CID 144673625.
- Winter, Jay, ed. (2014). The Cambridge History of the First World War. Cambridge University Press, (2 vol.)CS1 maint: postscript (link)
- Winter, Jay, and Antoine Prost. The Great War in History Debates and Controversies, 1914 to the Present (Cambridge UP, 2005) excerpt
- American Battle Monuments Commission (1938). American Armies and Battlefields in Europe: A History, Guide, and Reference Book. US Government Printing Office. OCLC 59803706.
- Balakian, Peter (2003). The Burning Tigris: The Armenian Genocide and America's Response. New York: HarperCollins. ISBN 978-0-06-019840-4. OCLC 56822108.
- Ball, Alan M. (1996). And Now My Soul Is Hardened: Abandoned Children in Soviet Russia, 1918–1930. Berkeley: University of California Press. ISBN 978-0-520-20694-6., reviewed in Hegarty, Thomas J. (March–June 1998). "And Now My Soul Is Hardened: Abandoned Children in Soviet Russia, 1918–1930". Canadian Slavonic Papers. Archived from the original on 9 May 2013. (via Highbeam.com)
- Bond, Brian (1968). "The First World War". In C.L. Mowat (ed.). The New Cambridge Modern History. Vol. XII: The Shifting Balance of World Forces 1898–1945 (2nd ed.). pp. 171–208 – via archive.org.
|volume=has extra text (help)
- Duffy, Michael (2006). Somme. First World War.com. ISBN 978-0-297-84689-5. Retrieved 25 February 2007.
- CS1 maint: postscript (link) (12th ed.). 1922, comprises the 11th edition plus three new volumes 30-31-32 that cover events since 1911 with thorough coverage of the war as well as every country and colony.
- Fortescue, Granville Roland (28 October 1915). "London in Gloom over Gallipoli; Captain Fortescue in Book and Ashmead-Bartlett in Lecture Declare Campaign Lost". The New York Times.
- Hirschfeld, Gerhard; et al., eds. (2012). Brill's Encyclopedia of the First World War.
- Jenkins, Burris A. (2009). Facing the Hindenburg Line. BiblioBazaar. ISBN 978-1-110-81238-7.
- Goldrick, James (1995). "10. The Battleship Fleet: The Test of War, 1895–1919". In Hill, J. R. (ed.). The Oxford Illustrated History of the Royal Navy. New York: Oxford University Press. pp. 299–318. ISBN 978-0-19-211675-8.
- Larsen, Daniel (2014). "Intelligence in the First World War: The state of the field". Intelligence and National Security. 29 (2): 282–302. doi:10.1080/02684527.2012.727070. S2CID 154714213.
- Lyons, Michael J. (1999). World War I: A Short History (2nd ed.). Prentice Hall. ISBN 978-0-13-020551-3.
- Meltzer, Allan H. (2003). A History of the Federal Reserve – Volume 1: 1913–1951. Chicago: University of Chicago Press. pp. 65–90. ISBN 978-0-226-52000-1.
- Moon, John Ellis van Courtland (July 1996). "United States Chemical Warfare Policy in World War II: A Captive of Coalition Policy?". The Journal of Military History. 60 (3): 495–511. doi:10.2307/2944522. JSTOR 2944522.
- Page, Thomas Nelson. "Chapter XI: Italy's Attitude in the Beginning of the War". Italy and the World War. Brigham Young University. cites "Cf. articles signed XXX in La Revue de Deux Mondes, 1 and 15 March 1920"
- Prior, Robin (1999). The First World War. London: Cassell. ISBN 978-0-304-35256-2.
- Repington, Charles à Court (1920). The First World War, 1914–1918. 2. London: Constable. ISBN 978-1-113-19764-1 – via archive.org.
- Sisemore, James D. (2003). The Russo-Japanese War, Lessons Not Learned (MMAS thesis). US Army Command and General Staff College. Archived from the original on 4 March 2009. Retrieved 1 March 2021.
- Symonds, Craig L. (2016). The U.S. Navy: A Concise History. New York: Oxford University Press. pp. 68–70. ISBN 978-0-19-939494-4.
- Taylor, Alan John Percivale (1963). The First World War: An Illustrated History. Hamish Hamilton. ISBN 978-0-399-50260-6. OCLC 2054370.
- Wilgus, William John (1931). Transporting the A.E.F. in Western Europe, 1917–1919. New York: Columbia University Press. OCLC 1161730.
- Winegard, Timothy. "Here at Vimy: A Retrospective – The 90th Anniversary of the Battle of Vimy Ridge". Canadian Military Journal. 8 (2).