Alliance An agreement among people or nations to unite for a common cause. Each member of an alliance agrees to help the other members in case one is attacked.
How could Germany’s location in Europe be a problem for them?
Germany in the Middle Germany’s big problem was that it was in the middle of Europe. That made it vulnerable if it came to war.
In the 19th century, Germany’s brilliant Chancellor, Bismarck, solved this problem by keeping friends with Russia and Austria-Hungary
Then Bismarck allied with Italy and Austria-Hungary (the Triple Alliance). Together with his friendship with Russia, this kept Germany safe.
But when Kaiser Wilhelm became Emperor, he dumped the Russian alliance. He kept the Triple Alliance, but this did NOT solve the problem of Germany’s encirclement.
The Triple Entente In 1907 Russia joined Britain and France to make the Triple Entente. By 1914 Europe had divided into two massive superpower blocks.
What sparked it all?
The events that followed… Because of the assignation of Archduke Franz Ferdinand in June of 1914 by a member of a nationalistic secret Serbian society, the emperor of Austria-Hungary declared war of Serbia.
The events that followed… Russia sent troops to defend Serbia because Russia had a separate treaty with Serbia. Russia supported Serbia because they were both of a similar ethnic backgrounds.
The events that followed… Since Germany had a treaty with Austria- Hungary (the Triple Alliance), Germany declared war on Russia.
The events that followed… France had a treaty with Russia (the Triple Entente) so Germany declared war against France.
The events that followed…
Things changed during the war The Triple Alliance and the Triple Entente turned into these two WWI alliances. The Triple Entente plus more formed the Allied Powers The Triple Alliance plus more formed the Center Powers