World War 1 & 2 / United Nations

World War 1, better known as “The Great War” started because of the assassination of the Austrian Archduke Francis Ferdinand. On July 28, 1914 Gavrilo Princip, a Serbian nationalist, murdered the one appointed to the throne of Austria-Hungary to protest Habsburg rule of Bosnia. Austria-Hungary declared war on Serbia, Russia prepared to defend its Slavic neighbors, and Germany declared war on Russia. Hence World War I begins. World War I, 1914-1918, was originally a European war. It eventually escalated to a global conflict involving 32 nations.

It began when Germany and Russia went to war with Serbia. Mutual defense pacts drew in the allies of the warring nations including France, Belgium, Great Britain, Austria-Hungary and the Ottoman Empire among others. In May 17, 1915 a German submarine, or U-boat, sank the British passenger liner Lusitania without warning, killing 1198 people on board, including 128 American citizens. Germans asserted, correctly, that the ship carried war materials for the allies. Americans were outraged. Germany temporarily halted submarine warfare to avoid bringing the United States into World War I.

The year 1916 was the year of the Battle of the Somme. The battle of Somme started July 1st and ended on November 28th 1916. The Battle of the Somme was the largest of all offensive planned by the British against the German Army up to that point in the First World War. The mastermind of the offensive was Lt. Gen sir Douglas Haig. Haig’s plan called for a massive artillery barrage that was to knock out all German resistance along an 18 mile long section of the front. He employed the use of 1,500 British guns backed by almost the same amount of French artillery.

As the barrage commenced, British infantry would flood into the front line trenches in preparation to advance on the broken German front. The barrage was set to begin on the June 24, 1916. Following the taking of the German lines, the British would then sweep through to Cambrai and Douai, breaking the German line in two. The massive barrage began on schedule and pounded the German lines for seven days non stop. However, the British lacked high explosive shells in their arsenal at the time and the concussion shells used did little damage to the German trenches and barbed wire tangles which went unnoticed by the British high command.

The Germans remained in their dug outs for the duration of the barrage, quite safe from the artillery. The British were confident that the barrage had all but wiped out the German defenders and that they would find only empty trenches across no man’s land. The British units, most of them formed from Kitchner’s Army, advanced in close order, bayonets fixed, towards the German lines. As the first units of the B. E. F. got into the middle of no man’s land, German machine gun nests sprung up to meet them. The British idea of a quick victory faded quickly as regiment after regiment fell before the German machine guns.

Soon the German artillery joined in the attack. Many British regiments were killed still at their starting points, never making it out of their trenches. The 1st Lancashire Fusiliers and several other regiments from the 29th Division, were pinned down in a sunken road halfway to the German lines and were subsequently shot to pieces by the German machine guns. Only a handful of British soldiers managed to actually make it to the barbed wire tangles and even fewer to the German front line itself. By the end of the first day, the British had lost 60,000 men on the assault.

Gen. Haig was still confident that the battle would succeed as long as the British infantry kept pressure on the Germans despite the mounting losses. The battle rage on for weeks. The French gained small amounts of land on the southern section of the line but the gains overall were minimal. On September 25, the British again tried a large scale assault on the German lines with the same consequences. However, the British had managed to move somewhat in the north allowing them to take Beaumont-Hamel in mid November. By the end of November, the Somme Front had stabilized.

The battle was considered over by November 28 and by this point had claimed 420,000 casualites for the British, 195,000 for the French, and 650,000 for the Germans trying to stop them. Gen. Haig finally gave into pressure from his subordinates and acknowleged the offensive’s failure. The Battle of Verdun is considered the greatest and lengthiest in world history. Never before or since has there been such a lengthy battle, involving so many men, situated on such a tiny piece of land. The battle, which lasted from 21 February 1916 until 19 December 1916 caused over an estimated.

700,000 casualties (dead, wounded and missing). The battlefield was not even a square ten kilometres . Three years after the fighting began in Europe, the United States enters World War I when German submarine attacks on Atlantic shipping finally strained its neutrality. United States involvement starts at April 06, 1917 lasts until November 1918 and costs the lives of 26,000 American soldiers. The entry of the United States turns the tide of the war toward victory for the Allies and the nation emerges as a major world power. World War 2: The Fight For World Domination.

World War 2 was a global conflict that started on July 7, 1937 in Asia. It then started in Europe from September 1, 1939 to 1945. World War 2 involved most countries of the world and every inhabited continent. Virtually all the countries that participated in World War 1 were involved in World War 2. Hitler wanted revenge against Britain and France for Germany’s defeat in World War 1. Hitler wanted to control land for Germany. He wanted to enslave the whole population and to enslave others. World War 2 became a struggle to death for the mastery of the world.

During World War 2 there were a lot of new weapons. Germany was very aggressive with Europe. Japan had ambitions in Asia. This made World War 2 the most destructive war in human history. When war broke out in Europe Japan occupied French into China. When the US threatened to blockade oil shipments to Japan unless it gave some of its conquest then Japan decided to go to war. Japan launched a surprise attack on the US fleet at pearl harbor on December 7, 1941. The Japanese hoprd this would be a knockout blow for the Americans but they miscalculated terribly.

At first Japan waas very successful with their attacks. They invaded the Philipines, Hong Kong, Borneo, The Solomon Islands, Java, and Singapore. After Germany’s defeat America turned its full military strength on Japan rather than having a full scale invasion on Japan. The United States dropped an atomic bomb on the Hiroshima and three years later they dropped a second bomb on Nagasaki. On 30 April 1945 Hitler committed Suicide and on May 7th Germany surrendered. On May 8th Winston Churchill announced VE Day. British people wave flags, sing, and dance in the streets.

Finally on Sept 2 1945 Japanese signed the surrender agreement and hence World War 2 was finished. Birth Of The United Nations The victorious allies launched a new international peace keeping organization founded in 1945 known as the United Nations. Today the United Nations has more than one hundred ninety one member nations. The United Nations was formed to maintain peace among nations. The United Nation was formed after word war 2 ended in 1945. The UN Charter seeks to maintain peace in the world while encouraging friendship and cooperation among nations.

Members agree to give up the use of force in disputes except in self defense. The United Nations also works to eliminate hunger, disease, and ignorance; it promotes human rights and economic development. The UN’s charter established six distinct bodies that serve different functions: (1) The General Assembly (2) The Security Council (3) The Secretariat (4) The Economic and Social Council (5) The International Court of Justice (6) The Trusteeship Council. The General Assembly is made up of all 191 member countries, each with one vote. It undertakes all major discussions and decisions about UN actions.

The Security Council is the most powerful body in the UN. It is responsible for maintaining international peace, and for restoring peace when conflicts arise. Its decisions are binding on all UN members. The Security Council has the power to define what is a threat to security, to determine how the UN should respond, and to enforce its decisions by ordering UN members to take certain actions. The Secretariat is the UN’s executive branch. It oversees the administration of the UN’s programs and policies and carries out day-to-day operations. This branch is headed by the secretary general, who acts as the UN’s spokesperson.

The Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC) works under the authority of the General Assembly to coordinate the economic and social work of the UN. ECOSOC has 54 member countries elected by the General Assembly for three-year terms. ECOSOC coordinates studies and recommends actions on international topics such as medicine, education, economics, and social needs. It oversees the work of a large number of programs and agencies. The International Court of Justice, also known as the World Court, is the judicial arm of the UN. It is located in The Hague, Netherlands.

The court hears cases brought by nations against each other. It has 15 judges, elected by the Security Council and the General Assembly. A country is not required to participate in the court’s proceedings, but if it agrees to participate, it must abide by the court’s decisions. The Trusteeship Council was established to oversee the transition of a handful of colonies to independence. The last of those colonies gained independence in 1994, making the Trusteeship Council obsolete. Those were the different functions of the six bodies of the United Nations. The United Nations was formed to prevent another World War.