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The Great Wars

  • Philip Ouston

Abstract

Deep-seated tension between the Slav minority and the Austro-Hungarian ruling-class of the Habsburg Empire breached the long European peace in the late summer of 1914, when Serbian patriots assassinated the heir to the imperial throne at Sarajevo, in the troubled Balkans, setting off a chain reaction of mobilisation and counter-mobilisation which brought the Serbs’ and Austrians’ protectors, Russia and Germany respectively, face to face, ready for war. France, Russia’s ally against the German Reich since 1895, refused to stay neutral, and Germany declared war on her on 3 August and immediately launched the main part of its powerful Army westwards through neutral Belgium to knock out the French quickly, before turning on the cumbersome Russian‘steamroller’ in the east. The violation of Belgian neutrality provoked the British to declare war on Germany, and to send an efficient but very small Expeditionary Force of professional soldiers across the Channel to aid the French.

Keywords

Socialist Party Parliamentary Government Surrealist Movement French Writer Popular Front 
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Notes

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Copyright information

© Philip Ouston 1972

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  • Philip Ouston

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