Who Started World War I? – Behind the News


MATT HOLBROOK: It was a war
that changed the world forever.
But it may never have started
had it not been for this guy –
Gavrilo Princip.
On June 28, 1914,
he assassinated
Archduke Franz Ferdinand of Austria,
and it started
a massive chain reaction.
Austria declared war on Serbia,
and countries supporting both sides
came to help.
Suddenly, a small war
became a big one.
On one side
were the Allies,
including countries
like France,
Britain and Russia.
On the other were
the Central Powers –
Germany, Austria-Hungary,
and the Ottoman Empire,
which is now Turkey.
At the time, Australia was still
a member of the British Empire,
so they were part of the Allies.
NEWSREEL REPORTER:
No time was wasted in ’14.
Up and away to war.
The word went out for volunteers,
and more than 400,000
young men enlisted.
Some young teenagers
also wanted to fight,
so they lied about their age
to get in.
On April 25, 1915,
Australian and New Zealand soldiers,
by then known as the ANZACs,
landed at Gallipoli.
More than 50,000 Australians fought
in the eighth-month-long campaign.
It’s remembered as
the first real battle
we took part in as a nation,
but most of the fighting
didn’t happen here.
It happened on the Western Front
in France.
From 1914 until the end of the war,
both sides dug and fought from
large trench and dugout systems.
Trenches helped protect soldiers
from guns and artillery,
but life could be tough.
A big threat was disease.
The trenches weren’t clean,
there wasn’t much medical help,
and at times, it got really cold.
Many soldiers died because of
the conditions they lived in
and the spread of disease.
As the war went on, more technology
was designed to break the deadlock.
The first fighter planes
battled over the trenches,
while bombers made raids
behind enemy lines.
The first-ever tanks
hit the front lines
to combat trench warfare.
There was now
fighting on the ground,
in the air, and at sea.
In April 1917,
America entered the war,
assisting the Allies.
Hundreds of thousands of troops
flooded the front lines.
By early 1918, Germany and its allies
had defeated Russia
on the Eastern Front
and made a big push in France,
but Germany’s attack failed.
The Allies mounted
their own offensive,
retaking territory from Germany.
The tide was turning.

Posts created 6830

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Related Posts

Begin typing your search term above and press enter to search. Press ESC to cancel.

Back To Top