Flashcards in Chapter 2: The First World War Deck (103):
Causes of WWI
Significance of WWI to Canada
- Canada was involved as a part of the British Empire
- Canada gained worldwide respect for bravery and skill
- Marked an important step towards Canada's independence from Britain
- Created further tensions between the French and English Canadians
Glorious image of war
War = heroic, legendary, romantic, glittering uniforms, victory marches, parades and music
Imperialism is the extending rule of authority of one country over other countries or territories.
- involved forming and maintaining an empire through the establishment of colonies or spheres of influence
- resulted from industrialization because countries needed raw materials to supply their factories, and new markets in which to sell their goods
- countries would compete over colonies and these conflicts in faraway places threatened to bring war between countries
How did industrialization lead to imperialism?
Industrialization pushed countries to look for raw materials elsewhere and new markets in which to sell their goods
"the sun never set on the British Empire"
- British strategic military and naval bases encircled the globe
- Britain was the envy of other aspiring colonial powers because it was tremendously wealthy
- Had many large colonies in the Western Hemisphere and Central Africa
- Germany was France's principal rival; began to target the French Empire
- Germany wanted to take over its colonies
Belgium, Holland, Spain, Portugal and Italy
- Belgium and Holland has some important colonies but were small players on the European scene
- Spain and Portugal had largely squandered their empires in the early part of the 19th century
- Promoted Pan-Slavism
- Wanted to play the "big brother" role in encouraging Slav nationalism but had selfish motives
- desperately wanted to control a warm water port that would be ice free all year (Russia had a severe climate)
- In dominating the Balkans, Russia could fulfill its 200 year long goal of getting a warm water port
What is Pan-Slavism?
The idea planned to unit the Slavic peoples of the Balkans
- Russia was a big advocate of this
- Also wanted to dominate the Balkans
- Did not want to focus on stuff overseas; focussed on places next door to itself
- Slav nationalism was threatening Austria-Hungary itself because they had Balkan ethnic groups living there
- Groups began to want to form their own independent states and this threatened to cause the disintegration of Austria-Hungary
- A-H believed that its only chance for survival was to dominate the ethnics groups to the South (especially the aggressive Serbs)
- WWI was sparked by the events in the Balkans
- Had colonies in Southwest and East Africa but were not strategically located nor were they economically desirable
- German colonies were draining the German empire
- German leaders demanded that Germany acquire more colonies for industrial purposes and this brought the country to conflict with other European powers
- People feared German expansion
What is militarism?
Militarism is the policy of making a country's armed forces very strong and allowing a political situation in which military interests dominate government policy. Also a mindset where war is considered a respectable way of advancing a country's interests and resolving disputes.
Militarism contributing to WWI
- British Navy was the largest in the world and the British policy was called the TWO-POWER STANDARD (British navy must be at all times equal or better than any two other navies combined). Brought Germany into direct conflict with Britain
- Germany began to build up its navy and Britain saw this as a threat and led into an ARMS RACE, to see who could build and become the best equipped militarily (focus was on naval power, e.g.: launching the Dreadnought class of warships with a shit ton of guns on them)
- Germany also competed with France and Russia to build the largest army (Germany was not the largest but the best in areas such as training and equipment)
What is Britain's Two-Power Standard?
The British navy must be at all times equal or better than any two other navies combined.
What is the "arms race" between Britain and Germany?
The competition to see who could build and become the best equipped militarily.
Two types of nationalism:
1) pride and patriotism for one's country and the desire to preserve its own language/culture
2) within an ethnic group that does not have its own country and want to be liberated from a more dominant ethnic group. THIS was the kind of nationalism that led to WWI because the Balkans in A-H wanted to have their own territory
Which countries were in the Triple Entente?
Russia, France and Great Britain
(aka Allied powers)
- did not sign a formal agreement
- Only France and Russia truly formed a defensive alliance in which they promised to support each other if attacked
Which countries were in the Triple Alliance?
Germany, Italy and Austria-Hungary
Who was the Black Hand?
A Bosnian-Serbian terrorist organization that supported violent action to achieve its goals
- threatened to kill the Austrian Archduke Ferdinand if he entered Bosnia
- wanted to free Bosnia and liberate all the ethnic groups of Slav-descent in A-H to create "Greater Serbia", or, Yugoslavia
An alliance is the close association of nations for the achievement of common objectives.
- United for the purpose of joint military protection
- Ensure security in the years leading up to WWI
Countdown to war
1. ASSASSINATION: Archduke Ferdinand, the heir to the Austrian throne, was killed by Gavrilo Princip, a member of the Black Hand, while visiting Bosnia within the A-H empire
2. THE BLANK CHEQUE: A-H consulted Germany to discuss how to deal with the crisis of the assassination and Germany gave them the famous Blank Cheque that meant that Germany would support A-H even if that meant going to war. Germany was certain that Britain would remain neutral even if war did break out.
3. AUSTRIA-HUNGARY PREPARES FOR WAR: with the support of Germany
4. THE ULTIMATUM: The Austrians sent Serbia an ultimatum - hand over your terrorists (the Black Hand) or face war
5. SERBIA'S REPLY: Serbia agreed to most of the terms on the ultimatum but it asked for clarification on a few points, and A-H interpreted this response to be a rejection as it was looking for an excuse to go to war
6. JULY 28 1914: Austria-Hungary declares war on Serbia
7. RUSSIA'S MOBILIZATION: Russia believed that this declaration of war was part of a German plot to occupy the Balkans and Russia gave Serbia its own version of the blank cheque and began to mobilize its army against Austria-Hungary
8. GERMANY DECLARES WAR ON RUSSIA: Germany demanded that Russia demobilize and when Russia refused, Germany supported A-H by mobilizing its army and declaring war on Russia
9. FRANCE SUPPORTED RUSSIA: France was Russia's ally
10. GERMANY DECLARED WAR ON FRANCE: Germany felt threatened by Russia and France and ordered them to stop mobilizing. When they refused, Germany declared war on France.
11. SCHLIEFFEN PLAN: Germany planned to attack France through the neutral country of Belgium and was designed to avoid a two-front war. Germany thought that Britain would remain neutral but Britain had promised the neutrality of Belgium.
12. BRITAIN DECLARED WAR ON GERMANY: Because Britain promised to protect the neutrality of Belgium, it declared war on Germany when Germany invaded Belgium during the Schlieffen Plan.
WWI HAD BEGUN.
An ultimatum is a threat which states that one must meet certain conditions or face dire consequences.
What was the Schlieffen Plan?
A plan devised by the Germans whereby they would attack France through the neutral country of Belgium to avoid a two front war.
Believed that it could win a war now, but maybe not later
- was concerned with the survival of its multi-ethnic state and wanted to solve the Pan-Slav problem
- A-H dominated the Slav people who lived in Austria-Hungary but the Slav people wanted to be reunited with other Slav groups to form their own country
- mostly economic
- wanted access to an all-weather, warm weather port (such as the Balkans)
France believed that loyalty to the alliance system was the only way to remain a major power
- believed in the independence of sovereign states and also in curbing the ever-increasing strength of Germany
Who did Canada support in the war effort?
Prime Minister Robert Borden and his cabinet decided to support Britain wholeheartedly
Who was Colonel Hughes?
Colonel Hughes was a military general during the time of WWI and he sent out a call for volunteers to join the army for $1 a day
- Over 10,000 Canadians volunteered
- Hundreds of women also joined as nurses and ambulance drivers
What was the Newfoundland Regiment?
Newfoundland was not a part of Canada at the time and while some Newfoundlanders joined Canadian regiments, most joined the Newfoundland Regiment.
Why did people join the army?
1. SENSE OF PATRIOTISM: sentimental ties to Great Britain and Prime Minister promised a total of 500,000 men to support the British so there was also a sense of duty there
2. EXCITEMENT AND ADVENTURE: many young men still viewed war as a "great adventure"
Training Canadian Troops
- Sir Sam Hughes
- Troops were issued the Ross Rifle which was good for sharp shooting but poor in trench warfare
Who was Sir Sam Hughes?
He was Canada's Minister of Militia and Defence at the beginning of WWI.
What is the CEF?
- Canadian Expeditionary Force
- Canadians served overseas as part of the overall CEF
- On the Western Front, four Canadian divisions were formed into the Canadian Corps, which fought alongside British forces
Who was Julian Byng?
He was one of the British generals who commanded the entire Canadian Corps at the beginning of WWI
Who was Lieutenant-General Arthur Currie?
He became the commander of the Corps after Lord Julian Byng
- Both Byng and Currie ensured that the Canadian troops would fight as one unit and not dispersed throughout the British Units
The Canadian Corps
- was the Canadian Army
- Led by Byng and later by Currie
- strengthened the unity of Canadian soldiers fighting in Europe, but also gave Canadians at home sense of pride
1. Germany encountered resistance when moving into Belgium
2. Germany threw all of its forces against the French forces but was stopped by the BATTLE OF THE MARNE. Germany was denied a quick victory in the West (a two front war happened!!)
3. Germany could not advance and the French/British could not drive Germany out. So both parties dug trenches to protect their troops and nothing really happened over the next three years.
- Stalemate largely due to the implementation of the machine gun because it made going into no man's land so dangerous (no one wanted to move)
- airplanes were still primitive so trench warfare was a standard war tactic
- trenches offered protection against enemy fire but people were still vulnerable to bombs
- rats, lice and fungal diseases were common
Define "no man's land"
No man's land were the strips of land between trenches
- Whenever soldiers detected movement in enemy territory, they fired rifles and machine guns across no man's land
- The Ross Rifle jammed easily in dirt and mud
Why was the Ross Rifle so problematic in trench warfare?
It jammed easily in the dirt and mud
What is "going over the top"?
It means getting out of a trench and going into no man's land, fully exposed to enemy fire.
- The machine gun made this very dangerous because it mowed down groups and groups of soldiers
- Implementation of the machine gun was the main reason why the Western Front resulted in a three year long stalemate
What is a Battle of Attrition?
Trench warfare made it very hard for one side to gain the upper hand so war became a battle of attrition (wearing down the opponent)
- grind the other side to outlast them
- due to the fact that defensive weapons were superior to those for attack
Define "total war"
Total war meant that all the resources of a nation are organized for one purpose - to win war.
- In the past, war had little impact on the home front
- some said the home front was as important as the front line in war
- home front was responsible for production, enlisting troops, finance and organization
Why was the home front so important?
Due to the new idea of total war
- Home front included: production, conscription (mandatory military service), funding etc.
Impact of tanks on the battlefield
- used for the first time in the BATTLE OF THE SOMME
- developed to solve the problems of trench warfare
- tanks could attack across no man's land in relative safety because they were immune to machine gun fire and could roll over barbed wire
- Major reason for the Allied victory
Impact of poison gas on the battlefield
- used for the first time in the BATTLE OF YPRES
- German's pushed hoses into no man's land and pumped out poisonous chlorine gas towards the French and the Canadians
- soldiers were told to pee on a cloth and hold it over their noses and mouths to neutralize the gas
- chlorine gas caused blindness and stripped the lining of the lungs, causing people to choke and drown due to fluid build up in the lungs
Impact of machine guns on the battlefield
- Machine guns accounted for most of the deaths during WWI
- British generals initially did not believe that machine guns would be very efficient at killing troops in no man's land
Impact of submarines on the battlefield
- small and inefficient during WWI
- but torpedoes could sink even the largest ships at the time
- torpedoes could be fired underwater at a moving target
- German submarines in WWI wanted to sink merchant ships that supplied Britain with war supplies (wanted to starve Britain)
Impact of airplanes on the battlefield
- usually flown by one pilot
- could only stay in the air for one hour before needing more gas
- dogfights emerged between rival pilots
- often used to watch the enemy
The Western Front
- Battle of Ypres
- Battle of Verdun
- Battle of the Somme
- Battle of Vimy Ridge
- Battle of Passchendaele
mneumonic device --> SPYVV
The Western Front Stalemate
After the battle of the Marne, Germany realized that Schlieffen Plan had failed so they stood still in the trenches on the West to focus on the Russians in the East.
The Battle of Ypres, April 1915
- Location: Belgium
- First taste of trench warfare for Canadian troops
- First use of CHLORINE GAS
- Inspiration for the famous poem, "In Flander's Fields"
- German poison gas attack set the ugly manner in which WWI would be fought in
The Battle of Verdun, February 1916
- Germany attacked the French
- This battle and the Battle of the Somme were the defining battles of WWI
- Was a battle of attrition
- Some say the French never recovered psychologically from this battle
The Battle of the Somme, July 1916
- Happened while the Germans were busy with the French at Verdun
- Allies tried to end trench warfare with a big attack on the German trenches in the Battle of the Somme (attack was unsuccessful)
- Germany did not retreat
- 20,000 Canadians were killed
- Newfoundland Regiment suffered
- Only a few miles of land were gained and casualties reached over a million
Why was the Battle of the Somme such a disaster?
1) Allied troops were overloaded with 25-60 kg of gear
2) Lost the element of surprise when a mine detonated 10 minutes before the attack (Germans could get prepared)
3) Underground explosions did not dislodge the wire protecting German trenches so the Allies became trapped
4) Attack was delayed and happened in broad daylight (oops)
5) Men suffered from shell-shock
The Battle of Vimy Ridge, April 1917
- Location: in France near Belgium
- Vimy Ridge is important because it was a strong natural fortress that was easy to defend and very dangerous to attack
- Vimy Ridge fell into the hands of the Germans and the Allies wanted to get it back
- Allies tried bombing the ridge for three weeks to weaken the Germans
- Canadian attack was successful and well-planned although we suffered heavy losses
- Capture of Vimy Ridge was the first time in history that Canadian units fought together as one
- This victory became a symbol of independence and nationhood
- Canadian troops were soon recognized as some of the best troops on the Western Front
- Currie was promoted and replaced Byng (marked the end of the British commanding the Canadian troops)
The Battle of Passchendaele, October 1917
- Canadian troops were asked to attack the Germans
- Currie said that they could not capture the town of Passchendaele because it was too muddy but we attacked anyway
- Took the town and held it until reinforcements came
- Only gained 7km that the Germans eventually got back again
The Eastern Front
(Canada did not participate in the Eastern Front)
- The Russian Campaign
- The Gallipoli Campaign
The Russian Campaign, August 1914-1916
- Russion troops invade Germany
- Surprised Germans because they thought they would invade Russia first and Germany didn't think the Russians would react to quickly
- Although Germany was surprised, they were able to defeat the Russians in several battles
BUT, these contributed to the stalemate in the Western Front. Germany kept advancing into RUssia until 1916.
The Gallipoli Campaign, April 1915-December 1915
- The Turks entered the war on the side of the Central powers in an attempt to keep the Russians out of the straits of the Gallipoli peninsula (didn't want Russians to reach the Balkans)
- Britain also wanted to control the Gallipoli peninsula in order to open a supply line to Russia and allow Britain to attack A-H and Germany from the Balkans
- Turned out to be another military disaster
- Most troops for the Allies were Australian
- was a poorly-planned attack
- just demoralized the Allied forces
Why was the Gallipoli peninsula so important?
It was a water passage that would allow the Russians access to the Balkans and the Black Sea
Canadians in the Air
- Canada didn't have its own air force
- Joined the British Corps
- almost 40% of the British Corps were Canadian
What is a "dogfight"?
- Aerial duels between pilots
- No parachutes
- Throw bombs out of the open cockpit at the auspicious time
Role of the pilot
- pilots were romanticized
- reputations built on skills
What is an "ace"?
A pilot that participates in dogfights
Who was Baron von Richthofen?
- Most famous German ace who shot down the most enemy planes (aka the "Red Baron")
- Canadian Captain Roy Brown became famous for shooting him down
Who was Billy Bishop?
Canada's top wartime ace
- was awarded the Victoria Cross a British military honour for courage and bravery)
Who was Captain Roy Brown?
A Canadian Captain famous for shooting down Baron von Richthofen
Command of the Seas
- Germany knew that the command of the seas was very important to Britain
- Britain needed sea lanes open for supplies and raw materials
- Britain chased the German navy out of the sea and set up a blockade
- German fleet never entered the Atlantic so Germany reacted using submarine warfare
What is a U-Boat?
A german war submarine
a German U-boat sank the British passenger ship, the Lusitania that held a lot of wealthy, powerful Americans
- most were American and the American public opinion began turning against the Germans after this incident
- two years later, the Americans joined the war and this incident helped develop the American stance in world affairs
Unrestricted submarine warfare
Germany thought the war was dragging on for too long and introduced a policy of unrestricted submarine warfare
- U-boats sank over 1000 Allied ships
What was the Convoy System?
It was designed to protect Allied supply ships from German U-boats
- supply shits were escorted by armed destroyers that surrounded the fleet
- this strategy effectively ended the threat of the German U-boats
Why did the USA enter the war?
1. The sinking of the Lusitania
2. Germany's unrestricted submarine warfare policy
3. Americans learned that Germany was encouraging Mexico to attack the USA (discovered when the British intercepted the infamous Zimmerman Telegram, which outlined the scheme)
- Britain was eager to tell the USA so that the Americans would become involved, giving the Allies a great advantage
The end of WWI
1. EVENTS IN RUSSIA: Tsar Nicholas was overthrown and a provisional government took over but was unsuccessful in war against the Germans, so the BOLSHEVIKS (communists led by Vladimir Lenin) took over. Lenin started peace negotiations with the Germans and gave Germany all of Poland, Lithuania and Ukraine. The Treaty of Brest-Litovsk took Russia out of war, leaving Germany in a single-front war.
2. Allies remained strong despite losing Russia because the USA had joined. Germans realized that they were in a crisis because A-H and Turkey, their allies, were collapsing
3. Germany's only hope was to launch a huge attack before America arrived (took America 8 months to train troops)
4. The HUNDRED DAYS was an Allied effort that finally broke the back of the German military. Thousands of German troops were stopped just short of Paris. Canadians were in the forefront and were assigned the task of leading the charge and Germany was most scared to face Canada. Allies eventually won back France and Belgium. Fighting stopped.
What was the Treaty of Brest-Litovsk?
It was a treaty between Russia and Germany that took Russia out of war. Lenin opened peace negotiations with Germany and gave them a bunch of land.
November 11, 1918
Germany formally surrendered.
Sacrifices on the Home Front to fund the war
- food rations
- mandatory waste reduction
- daylight savings
- community fundraisers
- students dismissed from school early to help harvests
- "Meatless Mondays", "Fueless Sundays" etc.
- Alcohol was banned
- Victory bonds
- Income tax was introduced
The Halifax Explosion, 1917
- brought the bloodshed of the war in Europe right to home soil
- French munitions ship carrying explosives crashed into another vessel in the Halifax harbour
- Blasted large sections of Halifax, a huge tidal wave occurred and fires roared through the city
- Boston donated over $3 million of relief supplies to help the city of Halifax
- to celebrate American generosity, to this day, a special Christmas tree is shipped from Nova Scotia to Boston every year
- German, Austrian and Hungarian people living in Canada
- Some were even citizens of Canada
- Fears of sabotage, suspicions of spies etc.
- People demanded that enemy aliens be fired from their jobs and locked up
War Measures Act
- Canadian government's response to enemy aliens
- placed restrictions on enemy aliens
- enemy aliens could be arrested or searched and many were sent to internment camps
- censorship was introduced (banned books and magazines in enemy languages)
Canada's Economy during the war
- debt increased dramatically in order to finance wartime production
- factories were quickly retooled to produce war supplies
- farmers were ordered to produce as much as possible
- Canada's economy boomed until the end of the war
- volunteer enlistments were not keeping up with the number of people dying
- conscription = compulsory military service
Quebec + conscription
- Canada was deeply divided on the issue
- Some thought Quebec was not contributing enough to the war but the French were essential as farmers etc
- French don't have such strong ties to the British and the Quebecois had long lost their cultural ties to France
- French language rights had been taken away so the French felt like second class citizens
- military training programs were all in english
--> caused long-term resentment in Quebec
- the conscription crisis worsened the hate in Quebec
The Military Service Bill, 1917
Prime Minister Borden introduced it and made conscription compulsory for all males between the ages 20 and 35
- only wartime production, the sick and pacifists/religious were not forced to join
- riots in Montreal and Quebec City broke out against conscription
- many saw it as a moral duty to join the army and serve the country
- those who pussied out were called "slackers" and "shirkers"
- resentment toward pacifists increased and theses people faced hostility and ridicule
Conscription affecting politics
- Borden invited Wilfred Laurier and the Liberals to join his party, the Conservatives, to make a coalition government and demonstrate Canada's commitment to winning the war
- Laurier refused to join because the Liberals were deeply opposed to conscription
- 1917 election was fought largely on the issue of conscription
- Henri Bourassa led the campaign against conscription
- the Union Government won the most seats but the Liberals won 57% of the popular vote
Who was Henri Bourassa?
He was a French-Canadian nationalist who led a campaign against conscription during the 1917 election
New roles for women
- Overseas: ambulance drivers, nurses
- At home: banks, factories, police
--> previously considered unsuitable for women
- women started to organize themselves to gain the right to vote (called SUFFRAGETTES)
Women and suffrage
- 1916: women were granted the right to vote in most provinces
- 1917: the Wartime Electrons Act granted the federal vote to the mothers, sisters and wives of soldiers in the Armed Forces
- end of the war: almost all women had the federal vote
- aboriginal women, asians and other minorities could still not vote in federal elections
any strategy used to persuade people to believe in a certain idea
- was used to persuade people to join the Armed Forces and influenced how people felt about the war
- encourage people to vote for the Union government in the 1917 election
- usually in newspapers since tv was yet to be invented and radio was rare
- casualty numbers and tragedies were not printed in newspapers to prevent people from reading about the truth (censorship!)
What is the armistice?
It was signed on November 11, 1918 as an agreement amongst warring countries to stop fighting and move to a peace conference.
- delegates met in Paris to discuss the peace terms
- victors would set the terms
The Fourteen Points
- created by President Woodrow Wilson of the USA
- presented to convince the Americans that the sacrifices made during the war were justified
- Wilson brought these points to Paris and tired to convince the Europeans that these points could be the basis for lasting peace
GROUP ONE: Wilson's ideas on internationalism and how the countries should work together
- countries would need to put aside selfishness and nationalist desires
- allow self-determination (allow ethnic groups to make their own countries)
GROUP TWO: refer to how German conquered lands should be dealt with
- gave the Czechs, Slovaks, Serbs, Croats and Poles a homeland
- made it clear that the Austria-Hungarian Empire would be dissolved (would cause further conflicts though)
What is self-determination?
It is outlined in Wilson's famed Fourteen Points and it means to let ethnic groups create their own countries.
- Created Czechoslovakia and Yugoslavia
The Treaty of Versailles
- happened at the Paris Peace Conferences
- goal was to create an agreement that would prevent another war from occurring
- REALISTS: believed that Germany should be dealt with very harshly so that it physically would be unable to go to war again (Clemenceau of France)
- IDEALISTS: thought that punishing the Germans would make them feel bitter, which may cause them to seek revenge (Wilson of USA)
- David Lloyd George of Britain was in between
- France is right next to Germany so it made sense that they would want to cripple Germany
- Britain didn't want to cripple Germany completely because it was interested in trading with Germany in the future
- Treaty was signed as a compromise between realism and idealism
- resulted in self-determination and the War Guilt Clause
What is the War Guilt Clause?
It was included in the Treaty of Versailles and stated that Germany alone must accept responsibility for causing the war
- was used to justify the punishments imposed on Germany
- Germans protested and the German Chancellor resigned
- German sailors sank the German fleet so that the Allies could not take it
- None of the protests worked
- Germany was forced to sign the Treaty of Versailles
Summary of the Treaty of Versailles
1. The War Guilt Clause
2. Alsace Lorraine was returned to France
3. Poland was given a strip of land taken from Germany to create access to the sea (the Polish Corridor)
4. Germany and the Central Powers were forced to surrender all of its colonies to the LON
5. Germany's army was limited to 100,000 men and the navy/air force were severely restricted
6. Germany was forced to surrender its entire merchant fleet
7. the Rhine River Valley was de-militarized. Rhineland was still part of Germany but they were just not allowed to do anything military in that region (called a buffer zone)
8. Unification of Austria and Germany was forbidden
9. Creating of the LON was to be included as a part of the Treaty of Versailles
Failure of the Treaty of Versailles
- several groups of people were left without homelands (nationalism and conflict --> lead to war)
- Germany was crippled and they became very angry, later wanted to seek revenge (humiliation) --> Hitler and WWII!!!
International Effects of the War
- Millions and millions of people died
- War cost $200 billion in total and left Europe near bankruptcy
- Ottoman Empire disintegrated
- Austria-Hungary disintegrated --> became Yugo- and Czechoslovakia as well as Bulgaria and Romania
- Poland emerged independent, free from Russian and German control
- Three monarchies became democratic: Germany, A-H and Turkey
- Russia became the first communist country
- Germany had to pay up and admit to causing the war
- Refugees fled