Archive for the ‘World War 1 Articles’ Category

There are many theories about what started World War II. The most popular belief is that Hitler wanted more land to expand Germany. Looking for a reason to start a war and invade Poland, but not wanting it to appear that he instigated it, Hitler staged a polish attack on Germany. This would justify Germany’s counter-attack and invasion of Poland.

On August 31, 1939, under Hitler’s command and Himmler’s ingenuity, a small group of German Nazis dressed in Polish uniforms invaded a German radio station. They left behind a dead prisoner from a concentration camp also dressed in a Polish uniform, making it appear like he died in an attack on the radio station. On September 1, Germany declared war on Poland. Ignoring warnings from Great Britain and France to withdraw their troops from Poland, Germany continued their invasion.

Two days later on September 3, both Great Britain and France declared war on Germany. This series of events started World War II. Later, the war would serve as a mask for Hitler’s holocaust and genocide of Nazi’s truest enemy, the Jews.

The United States entered the war when Japan attacked Pearl Harbor on December 7, 1941. The very next day, the United States declared war on Japan and on December 11, declared war on Germany.

On June 6, 1944, nearly 150,000 soldiers invaded the beaches of Normandy. D-Day, as it came to be known, was the western Allies largest amphibious invasion in world history. Before the month of June was over, more than 850,000 American, British and Canadian troops would occupy Normandy. U.S. General Dwight D. Eisenhower called the invasion on Normandy “The Great Crusade”.

On April 30, 1945, Hitler, along with his long time mistress, committed suicide and approximately one week later; Germany surrendered, putting an end to World War II. The end of World War II was the beginning of an era known as the Cold War which would continue for the next fifty years.
Over 100 million military personnel participated in the war making it the most widespread war in history. Around 72 million people lost their lives including 47 million civilians and 25 million military personnel.

20 million deaths were from war related famine and disease and 4 million prisoners of war died in POW camps. This astronomical death toll would make World War II the deadliest war in history. It was not only profound with the large number of casualties. It was also known as the most costly war, costing approximately one trillion dollars.

Jay Villaverde is the owner of http://www.WorldWarCollectibles.net A site dedicated to preserving history from the great wars. The site offers original items from World War II and is a must see for historians as well as collectors.

On June 28, 1914, Archduke Franz Ferdinand, heir to the Austro-Hungary throne, was assassinated by a Serbian nationalist group called the “Black Hand”. This was the beginning of a series of events that lead to the First World War.

On July 28, exactly one month after Ferdinand’s assassination, Austria-Hungary declared war on Serbia. Russia came to Serbia’s defense, recruiting its very large army. It took a full six weeks to bring the entire army together.

On August 1, Germany, in defense of its ally, Austria-Hungary, declared war on Russia.
France retaliated and went to war on Russia’s behalf against Germany and Austria-Hungary. Britain, an ally to France, declared war on Germany on August 4. Japan, as Britain’s ally, declared war on Germany on August 23 and, in return, Austria-Hungary declared war on Japan. Italy managed to avoid the war until May 23, 1915.

This was just the beginning of the war. There were numerous other countries that were involved. The war involved countries in North America, South America, Asia and Europe. One country was attacked, causing her ally to retaliate. This became a huge cycle causing a world wide “domino effect.”

Involving most of Europe and spanning over four continents, World War I was the first truly global war. On August 19, 1914, The United States declared a “policy of absolute neutrality.” They kept this position almost through the entire war. On April 6, 1917, the United States officially entered the war after Germany’s policy of unrestricted submarine warfare nearly wiped out America’s commercial shipping. This policy allowed Germany to sink any ship that approached Britain regardless of whether it was a military ship, supply ship or even passenger ship.

The war ended on November 11, 1918 when Germany signed an armistice treaty with the allies. The home front was a huge celebration. Those on the front, however, saw the war’s end in a different light. The fighting continued and several soldiers died even after the official end of the war. It had been over four years since the war began and it was very difficult to adjust to a sudden end to the war. Some suffered psychological breakdowns. They minds were simply so conditioned to the fighting that they could not imagine it being over so abruptly.

The war produced over 40 million casualties. 20 million lives were lost with as many civilian deaths as military deaths. 10 million civilians and nearly 10 million soldiers lost their lives. There were also 21 million injuries. World War I marked the end of the world order which had existed and would be a factor in the outbreak of World War II. Ironically, the First World War became known as “the war to end all wars.”

Jay Villaverde is the owner of http://www.WorldWarCollectibles.net A site dedicated to preserving history from the great war. The site offers original items from World War I and is a must see for historians as well as collectors.