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The End of World War I. I. Propaganda. With the prospect of victory fading, war time governments were obliged to devise means of persuading their own citizens that the sacrifice was worthwhile and those in the enemy camp that it was not. A. Domestic Propaganda.

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I propaganda
I. Propaganda

With the prospect of victory fading, war time governments were obliged to devise means of persuading their own citizens that the sacrifice was worthwhile and those in the enemy camp that it was not


A domestic propaganda
A. Domestic Propaganda

  • Suppression of domestic criticism of the war effort

  • 1. Russian tsar suspends the Duma for duration of war

  • 2. Germany establishes virtual miltary dictatorship

  • 3. Lloyd George and Clemenceau acquired emergency powers.

  • 4. Censorship of newspapers– publication of innaccurate casualty figures

  • 5. Limits on civil liberties– conscientious objectors are jailed


B behind enemy lines
B. Behind Enemy Lines

  • 1. Germany– political warfare behind enemy lines was the deliberate policy of the German government– to pin down B, F, and R military forces in counter insurgency operations behind the lines, and to acquire a reputation as the protector of the “oppressed peoples” (champion of the right of national self-determination)

    a.) Large number of discontented ethnic, religious, and social groups within the British, French, and Russian Empires

    b.) principal targets were Islamic populations of North Africa, Egypt, India, and Southern Russia

    c.) German Emperor’s Damascus speech in 1898 established him as protector of the 300 million Muslims on the earth– jihad –holy war

    d.) German finances poured into Islamic nationalist movements

    e.) Emigres from Russian Poland, Finland, Ukraine, Georgia, and Armenia received subsidies and encouragement from German officials for “national liberation” movements against Russian oppression– Russian Social Democratic Party (Bolshevik)

    f.) Ultimately unsuccessful– Easter rebellion in Ireland 1916 is example


B cont behind enemy lines entente
B cont. Behind Enemy Lines(Entente)

2. Entente countermeasures conflict with Fischer thesis because allied powers had developed war aims as grandiose and aggressive as Germany

A. Interallied economic cooperation-- enstranglement

Paris Economic Conference held June 1916– Britain, France, Italy Russia, Belgium, Portugal and Japan met to discuss ways of giving permanent form to the measures of inter-allied economic cooperation– preferential tarridffs, pooling of raw materials and shipping, joint management of financial and currency affairs

B. Provocation of insurrection

  • A. G.B concentrated on inciting an Arab-Muslim Revolution within the Turkish Empire

  • B. France directed its political warfare campaign at the national groups under Austo-Hungarian rule (Czechs, Poles, southern Slavs)

  • C. Russia paid lip-service to national self-determination by offering independence to Poland under Russian protection to win symapthy from West Prussia, German Posen, and Austrian Galicia


B cont behind enemy lines entente1
B cont. Behind Enemy Lines (Entente)

  • C. The Ottoman factor– much more valuable to the Central powers than anticipated

    • 1. closing of the Turkish straits had sealed off Russia from her European allies

    • 2. the Anglo-French effort out of the wars in the Dardanelles expedition of 1915 was a costly failure

    • 3. Turkish pressure on Egypt diverted British forces that might have been deployed elsewhere

      D. Idea of Islamic holy war against the West is not as powerful as hatred for Turkish overlords

    • Britan supports the Arab insurrection

    • Pinned down some 30,0000 Turkish troops and helped to keep the Red Sea open to Allied shipping

    • British advance from Egypt to Palestine in 1917-18 was greatly assisted by guerrilla operations against the Turks mounted by Arab contingents in contact with British officers– T.E. Lawrence

      E. This strategy was effective in curtailing the Ottoman Empire’s capacity to fulfill its obligations to its Germanic allies


C the world sides with entente
C. The World Sides with Entente

  • 1. Entente publically states war aims at invitation of Wilson (January 10, 1917)– to promote national self-determination– liberation of the Italian, Romanian, Southern Slav, Czechoslovak, and Polish subject nationalities under Hapsburg rule

  • 2. aroused American sympathy– and increased mutinies in Austro-Hungarian military

  • 3. fraudulent claim? Allied “spheres of interest” in Middle East-- Alfred Balfour’s 1917 proposal to create Jewish State in Palestine

  • 4. Russian Revolution 1917--replaced the Romanov dynasty with a parliamentary provisional government– provided ideological consistency of democracy vs. autocracy


Ii american intervention
II. American Intervention

  • A. Germany resumes unrestricted submarine warfare due to inequality of economic treatment and the U’s’s failure to exert pressure on London to relax its illegal blockade of Germany– assumed that Britain would get knocked out of the war before America had the time to mobilize

  • B. American army was smaller than the Belgian army in April 1917 130,000– not until summer of 1918 after the intro. of conscription and a military training program had America begun to make a critical contribution to western front– total military swells to 4.8 million


Iii russian withdrawal
III. Russian withdrawal

  • A. Bolsheviks take over Nov 17, 1917– seen as successful instigation by Germany– Lenin transported by Germans safely from Switzerland to Russia– “bread, land, and peace

  • B. Bolsheviks repudiate the tsarist regime’s debts to foreign lenders, thereby wiping out much of France’s foreign investment portfolio– published secret agreements concerning post-war redistribution of territory (embarassing)– call for general peace based on no annexations and no indemnities- receive no reply so they open separate peace negotiations


  • C. The Treaty of Brest- Litovsk

  • marked a significant contraction of the territory which the Bolsheviks controlled or could lay claim to as effective successors of the Russian Empire.

  • Lost Poland, Finland, Belarus, Ukraine, and the Baltic states (Latvia, Lithuania, and Estonia)


  • While the Russian withdrawal was initially a benefit to the Alliance, it actually ended up contributing to their defeat.

  • The idea was that Germany would be able to refocus more troops to the Eastern front.

  • However, this actually ended up becoming a benefit to the Entente Powers. Now that they actually looked like they were losing, France and Britain began to work much more closely together to establish a much more well-coordinated and effective Supreme Allied Command. Meanwhile, the Germans couldn't move as many combat divisions to the West as they would have liked since they had to keep defending their territory that they stole from the Russians. Also, some historians speculate that this is part of what finally pushed America over the edge into entering the war on the side of the Entente Powers.


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