World War I (WWI), also known as the First World War, was a global war originating in Europe that lasted from 28 July 1914 to 11 November 1918. More than 70 million soldiers were mobilised in one of the largest wars in history. There were tactical stalemates caused by trench warfare. It was one of the deadliest conflicts in history.
In 1882, Germany formed a defensive alliance with Italy and Austria-Hungary. Germany feared that France would retaliate after France's loss to Germany in 1871. France also made some allies with Russia and Britain. There was a major consequence though, too much money being spent on armaments. There were also many international tensions. Germany would challenge the right of France exerting their influence into non-European countries. European powers also quarrelled about annexing the Balkans after the Ottoman Empire left after over 400 years of rule, which forced a treaty to be signed. but there was one main trigger of World War 1. The assassination of Archduke Franz Ferdinand, heir to the Austrian-Hungarian throne. Which caused war between Austria-Hungary and Serbia which invoked the alliance.
During the war, there was an election campaign going on in Australia, with both sides going for the army, it was inevitable that many were going to join the army. There were so many that there were restrictions of age, height and fitness.Reasons for enlistment: Patriotism: Many Aussies grew up believing they had to be loyal to their country and fight Adventure: Many men lived boring lives and wanted to travel Peer Pressure: Men joined with their friends believing to do anything else would let their friends down, women preferred men in uniformLater Reasons Commitment: Men fought to finish the job of those who died, also family and friends who died in the war Propaganda: Schools encouraged leavers to join the army and government also started campaigns White Feather: Women gave a white feather to those they thought were fit enough to join the army
Places Aussies Fought
Australia's first engagement was in New Guinea where they drove out the Germans. The next was Gallipoli in 1915, which was a failure. After Gallipoli, Aussie army was divided into two, Aussie Light Horse , fought in Palastine, and infantry units, fought in France against Germany. From 1916-18, Aussie army fought in Middle East. They first fought the Turks to defend the Suez Canal, an essential waterway linking europe to the indian ocean. The most notable miltary achievement was the battle of Beersheeba, where they drove out he Turks and took control of Jerusalem, Lebanon and Syria. After that, they fought in France against Germany in the battle of somme, even though there was a stale mate, they defeated the Germans.
World war 1 is often referred to as the first modern war as the style of warfare changed form traditional hand to hand combat to more technologically advanced weaponry. The changes were fuelled by the 2nd Industrial Revolution. Battles were fought on many fronts, causing 8 million deaths. Trench warfare was war from the trenches. The trench system is explained in the image. Life in the trenches involved a basic routine of sleeping, eating and waiting for something to happen. Boredom and disease was a major problem in the trenches. There was also a lack of food and water. There was also limited protection given by the trenches.
Aim of the Gallipoli Campaign was to send troops to the Western Fornt believing Germany would send tropps. The plan failed as they did not execute the plan properly and the Turks were more organised. In April 1915, Anzacs landed at Gallipoli, facing steep cliffs instead of sandy beaches. Onthe first day, they managed to push the turks back 900 metres with 2600 casualties. Another offensive was launched, but the turks were so well positioned that the Anzacs were faced by machine gun massacre. The Anzacs advanced, believing they were succeeding. More than 230 men died in 45 minutes. It was the worst campaign of the Aussie army. The only successful part was the retreat, which saw only two casualties.