Monday, November 28, 2022


  e-SBO       Monday, November 28, 2022

The first world war was a purely imperialistic war due to its nature and the motives behind it. The war began on July 28, 1914, with the declaration of war by Austria-Hungary on Serbia and hostilities between the allied and central powers continued until the signing of the armistice on November 11, 1918. The war lasted four years, 3 months and 14 days.
The Short and Long Term Causes of the First World War
Analyse the short and long term causes of the first world war
The long and short term causes of the conflict were rooted deeply in European history as well as in the economic and political polices that prevailed on the continent after 1871, the year which marked Germany as a great power.
Germany organised the European balance of power and defeated France in the war of 1871 which caused France to view Germany as her arch rival. Such enmity facilitated World War One.
Long term causes
Formation of military alliance system/military camps: Imperialists European nations formed a military union to defend themselves and safeguard their interests against common enemies. They agreed to increase military camp members if any were attacked, they also agreed to fight together.
These military camps were formed after the unification of German in 1871 and were originated by Otto Von Bismarck. Germany was interested in forming the alliance because it wanted to isolate France in order to prevent it from seeking revenge after its defeat in the Franco-Prussian war of 1871.
Arms race / military preparedness / development of militarism: This was the competition of manufacturing military deadly weapons within the imperialists industrialised European nations who aimed to achieve the imperialists motives of their respective nations.
The armed race is symptomatic of the "security dilemma‟ in international relations whereby the pursuit of national security increases the sense of insecurity among the neighboring states, a well known example of an arms race is the Anglo-German naval rivalry between 1900 and 1914.
Expansion of the German naval involving the construction of powerfully armed and heavily armored battleships was met with the launch of the British Dreadnought class of naval vessels after 1906.
After the unification Germany began to manufacture new weapons that were beyond her domestic needs. This made other countries to join the competition of manufacturing weapons, they increased their defense budget the number of troops which necessitated or motivated them to go to war hence the outbreak of world war in 1914.
Oversea conflicts/ fighting for colonies/ imperialist motives:The industrial revolution in Germany, France and Britain led to economic domination leading to the scramble for colonies in Asia, Africa and Balkans and caused an immense increase in the manufactures of each country and a consequent need for foreign markets.
The principal field for European policies of economic expansion was Africa which is where clashes occurred due to colonial interests.
Economic rivalry in Africa between France and Great Britain, and between Germany on one side and France and great Britain on the other, almost precipitated war in European and even South America between 1898 and 1914.
European balance of power: Every European country wanted to maintainmilitary economic and politicalsuperiority over the anothers which led to theoutbreak of war. Germany wanted to remain the lion of the land through its miliary, while Britain wanted to remain the shark of the sea because it had very powerful marine technology
Such ideology caused other nations to struggle for recognition even if it meant risking world peace. Therefore, World War One broke out in 1914 because each nation wanted to maintain their status quo and claim recognition.
European nationalism: Many European nations joined the war to defend their national interests, e.g. the assassination of Archduke Ferdinand by a Serbian student was an act of nationalism against Serbia, while the conflict with France was meant to regain Alsace and Lorain from France.
Immediate causes.
Assassination of Archduke Ferdinand on 28th June 1914:Austria's PrinceFerdinand amd heir to throne and his wife Sophia were shot dead by a Serbian student while at their honeymoon at the bridge of Sarajevo, this was the immediate cause of World War One. Austria responded by giving an ultimatum to Serbia with the support of Germany. The conditions given included:
  • Serbia was to explain the assassination and bring the assassins to book.
  • Serbia was to dismiss all official which Austria suspected was involved in the murder.
  • Austrian officials and police were to be permitted to take part in the investigation. Serbia rejected some of the conditions with the support of Russia and her allies. On 25th July1914 German declared war on France on 3rd august 1914, Britain declared war on Germany, Russia also joined the war hence World War One.
Germany's attack on Belgium: Germany mobilised and stationed her troops in Belgium and prevented French troops from advancing. Germany's attack on Belgium on 2 august 1914, caused Britain to quickly join the war on 14 august 1914, Britain accusedGermany of breaking Belgium's neutrality which was confirmed since 1839 by the London conference. All these events also triggered the first world war in 1914.
How Africa was involved in the war
In 1914 German colonies in Africa consisted of: Togo Land, the Cameroon, Namibia (south west Africa), and Tanganyika (East Africa). An Anglo-French force took possession of Togo land in august 1914.
On September 1914 a British force from Nigeria invaded Cameroon and a French force from French Equatorial Africainvaded east and south ofCameroon. After many campaigns in which the Germans defeated the allied forcesseveral times, German resistance wasfinally overcome in February 1916. In South West Africa,Germany was conqueredbytroops from the Union of South Africabetween September 1914 andJuly 1915.
The British force was bigger in East Africa and comprised of about 4250 soldiers. This was was the force used to crush and defeat Germany's force of 750 soldiers and a similar number of policemen. The most important of Germany's possessions; East Africa (Tanganyika) displayed the strongest resistance to the attacks of the allies.
Early assaults by British and Indian troops (November 1914) were deflected by the Germans under General Paul Von Lettow-Vorbeck. In November 1915, British naval units gained control of Lake Tanganyika and in the following year, the allied forces (British, South Africa and Portuguese) intended to invade German East Africa which was under the command of general Jan Christian Smuts.
In 1916, the allies captured the principal towns of German East Africa including Tanga, Bagamoyo, Dar es Salaam and Tabora, the Lettow –Vorbeck‟s troops then retreated into the south east section of the colony. Late in 1917, however the German forces took the offensive, invading Portuguese East Africa.
In November1918,the allies began an invasion of Rhodesia. When the armistice was signed in Europe in 1918, the troops inGerman East Africa were still fighting even though most of the colonies were in the hands of the allies. Lettow –Vorbeck surrendered three days later.
The Factors that led the War to Spread Worldwide
Analyse the factors that led the war to spread worldwide
First World War was fought in Europe, but eventually it spread worldwide for various reasons. The reasons included; the need to protect colonial interests, military obligation, lack of troops among imperialist powers, the rise of sea wars, as well as the rise and spread of socialist or capitalist ideologies.
The Impact of the First World War on Africa
Assess the impact of the first world war on Africa
Destruction of Africa: World War One led to the destruction of Africa especially African agriculture and caused the deaths of Africans who participated in the war in Libya, Somalia and Kenya it‟s said that more than 100,000 East African troops were killed.
African nationalism: The world war led to the rise of African nationalism, it pushed Africans to demand their liberation and independence especially after the rise of awareness and the rise of African elites who organised peasants to demand their independence; Kenyatta, Nkurumah, were some African elites.
Extreme exploitation. The aftermath of World War One was the intensive exploitation of African resources because European nations wanted to compensate what they had lost during the war. New taxes like hit tax, gun tax, matiti tax, poly tax, head tax and dog tax were introduced. Land alienation increased forced labour become common, mineral extraction became dominant.
Rise of socialism in Africa: World War One led to the rise of socialism in Africa after the Bolshevik Revolution of 1917 whereby Africans adopted socialism e.g. Ujamaa villages in Tanganyika; Common Mans Charter in Uganda, Humanism in Zambia and Islamic socialism in Libya.
Political re-division of Africa: Itled to re-division of the African continent among the imperialist nations e.g. all German colonies were redistributed among the victor powers. German East Africa was renamed Tanganyika shared between Britain and Belgium whereby Britain took Tanganyika while Belgium took Rwanda and Burundi. South East Africa (Namibia) was given to South Africa.
Cameroon was shared between Britain and France the portion neighboring Nigeria was given to Britain and the rest was given to France. Togo was shared between France and Britain the portion neighboring Ghana was given to Britain and the rest was given to France.
The second world war was caused by the first world war. WW 2 in 1939 also affected the african continent.
The great depression: The first world war led to the great depression which victimisedAfrican economies leading to the fall of crop prices. In Europe, prices of African agriculture produce fell, wages of social services were also reduced.
Africa's involvement in the war:Some Africans were recruited by the colonial powers to fight on their side. Many Africans were taken to work as cooks, porters, security guards and fighters, this led to depopulation in Africa and gender imbalances. Ranks and medals were awarded to those who had successfully fought in the war, thus creating a new class of the ex-servicemen.
Fall in produce prices in African colonies: The war led to the fall of producer prices because of the severe financial crisis that faced the metropole and the colonies. During the period of war agriculture greatly declined, European plantations were destroyed or abandoned in order to concentrate on the war. African cultivation was equally affected resulted infamine.
Cut down of colonial government expenses: Social services expenditure was tremendously reduced because of the severe financial constraints of the war period due to this, colonial activities almost came to a standstill.
Social miseries: The war led to misery in various parts of Africa where the people suffered from homelessness, displacement famine, diseases, fears and uncertainties. There was an outbreak and spread of diseases like small pox, meningitis, plagues and venereal diseases like syphilis that were brought by the returning soldiers. There was a serious outbreak of influenza between 1918 and 1919 which killed many people.
Warfare associations: World War One led to the rise of warfare associationsin the colonies as a method to intensively exploit african resources, such warfare association included Kilimanjaro native planters, Bukoba coffee growers and Bataka association in Uganda.
Colonial schemes:Introduction and development of colonial schemes in order to generate big qualities and quantities as to increase exports to the metropole, this led to an influx of European settlers into East Africa, these were mostly ex-soldiers which meant more loss of land for the Africans.
With increased European settlement in Kenya, settlers became agitated for political power and representation in government.

The Meaning and Characteristics of the Great Depression
Explain the meaning and characteristics of the great depression
The great depression generally refers to the economic crisis which occurred between 1929 and the 1930s during the period of inter war between the world's super powers.
It can also be described as an economic disaster which spread throughout Europe following the collapse of the New York stock exchange in Wall Street on 19 October 1929.
In Britain it was called "the slump‟ and in German "Die Krise‟ (the crisis) and Americans used the term "great depression‟. The great depression began when the stock exchange crashed in 19 October 1929 and depositors feared bankruptcy and rushed to withdraw their deposited cash.
Characteristics of the Great Depression
Hyper inflation (high depression of money) facilitated to the collapse of economies.
Mass unemployment: The official figures are impressive, peaking at around 6 million unemployed in Germany, 14 million in the United States and 2.7 million jobless in Britain due to poor economic activities.
Social tensions increased considerably: With a rising intolerance towards groups or individuals who were perceived to be "economic rivals‟ or "outsiders,‟ many people began to blame their neighbors due to the economic collapse.
Low purchasing power:People were unable to buy food and other necessities due to poor economic activities.
Protectionism: Protectionism is the economic policy of restraining trade between nations through methods such as tariffs and government regulations. Preventing commodities from other nations was applied as a way to prevent depression.
Starvation famine and malnutrition related diseases:The depression took a heavy toll on the physical and mental health of European society. In Hamburg, for example over 50% of the young men were unemployed for more than two years and they were especially hard-hit psychologically.
Low production of industrial goods and steady fall of prices.
Closure of financial institutions like banks due to poor economic activity.
The wide spread of economic depression in the world, except for Russia.
It heightened gender divisions: In some cases married women workers were forced from the work place by state legislation in a campaign against so called "double earners‟ because their husbands also brought home a wage.
Domestic politics became increasingly turbulent: This was due to the government's failure to combat the depression effectively in much of central and eastern Europe and the Weimer Republic.
Widespread Malnourishment: Its effects on national health were long lasting. In the mid 1930s a routine medical inspection identified over 21% of school children in Pontypridd, Wales as malnourished.
The Causes of the Great Depression
Analyse the causes of the great depression
First world war of 1914, this war created an economic vacuum, whereby during the war many European countries were incurring high war expenditure while no production thus after the war the European nations wanted to compensate the gap of production that occurred during the period, which led to over production hence low prices in agricultural and industrial products.
Hence low investment which led to mass unemployment that brought low purchasing power that leads to poor welfare like famine starvation and death thus great depression.
Multi distribution of capitalist’s economy or uneven distribution of national economy in the capitalist’s nations. Whereby in pure capitalist‟s nations it‟s only few individuals that happen to own and control production for instance in U.S.A by the time of great depression it was only 5% of the population that owned the economy.
Unlike in socialism economy thus any withdraw of such people from the investments it affect the entire economy thus the fall of New York stock exchange in 1929 led to the investors to withdraw their money from the stock market which led to the economic depression of 1930‟s.
Heavy loans during the fighting, heavy debts from USA to France and Britain were acquired to facilitate the war even after the war more debts were got from USA like financial loan to construct the war damaged European nations, the results was when the pressure to repay loans and interests became greater particular in Europe, it created an economic situation whereby huge sum of money begun flowing from Europe to USA.
This destroyed international trade, thus Europeans nations couldn‟t develop but all of them depending on USA thus any problem on USA economy had to affect the entire world.
War indemnity of Germany and senseless circle payments, Germany was asked to pay huge indemnity or repatriation of 6.5 billion dollars to the victor power first of all this amount of money was too huge for Germany which had just come from war that led to inflation and created senseless circle payments.
Germany acquired loan from USA as to pay Britain and France who wanted to repay the loans from USA, who borrowed Germany thus a senseless circle payments that anything that would affect USA economy would affect the entire world economy hence the collapse of New York stock exchange led to great economic depression.
The collapse of new York stock exchange on 19th October 1929, this was the immediate cause of the great depression, many investors in USA and outside USA had invested a lot in USA stock exchange the fall of the prices of shares, made the investors to withdraw their shares which led to low investment that led to closure financial institutions like banks, and credit facilities, hence great depression.
Absence of international institutions like IMF and World Bank which would have acted as advisors and regulators of economic and financial issues in the world, like controlling inflation production, scarcity and financial regulation. Thus its absence in 1930‟s led to great economic depression
Over production of agriculture and industrial products, after the first world war that period was characterized with over production of agriculture and industrial output both in the periphery and in the metro pole, this led to the fall of prices of output of industrial and agriculture, which discouraged production in the long run, thus great economic depression.
Political instabilities during inter war period, this period did not enable many European nations to engage into commodity production and international trade, it left a little time for European and USA to engage in economic activities which led to poor planning that culminated into economic slump.
Bolshevik revolution of 1917, after undergoing the revolution Russia begun to under go command and central controlled economy, which narrowed the world market that led to the piles of goods without market from America and in western European nations, hence economic great depression.
Poor economic policies like protectionism, were also responsible for great economic depression e.g. USA during the inter war period practiced and pursued discriminative economic policy against world economies she passed the „Mc Cumber tariff‟ in 1922 to shelter her economies against imports of nation wishing to export more goods
The collapse of the Austria, as she was providing loans to the European nations but collapsed in may 1931 due to the withdraw on the French funds the financial crisis was intensified in Europe.
The recovery program after world war one, the European nations begun to discriminate the USA goods, and begun the recovery of agriculture sector which led to the discriminating of agriculture products in USA that resulted the pile of goods because of fewer buyers this affected the production and that marked the beginning of the great depression.
The Impact of the Great Depression on Africa
Assess the impact of the great depression on Africa
Fall of price commodity, it led to the fall of African cash crops tremendously like cotton, coffee, sisal and cocoa because the demand at the metro pole was also very low the peasants and European settlers who were the chief producers of such commodities almost abandoned the production.
Decline in provision of social services, whereby the colonial government was no longer interested in the investment of social services because of severe social crises in Europe.
Establishment of processing industries, like coffee, cotton ginneries an oil refinery as to increase the qualitative and quantitative output in the metro pole.
Intensive exploitation of african resources e.g. land alienation was doubled, new taxes were introduced, forced cropping was introduced and forced labour became a common place, this aimed at compensating the financial crisis that had affected their economy.
Regional imbalance, especially of transport network whereby railways lines and roads were constructed in areas where production was high and in places that there was no transport network
Provision of low wages, especially on colonial civil servants as to minimize colonial expenditures in the peripheries
Lay-offs / retrenchment that led to mass unemployment in many colonies because the colonial government reduced the number of workers so as to reduce colonial expenditure like teachers, nurses, clerks and others.
Development of migrant labourers, since colonial government increased plantation and labour reserves e.g. Rukwa, Kigoma and Dodoma in Tanganyika and northern Uganda as well.
Growth of food stuff, the crises contributed in putting more efforts in the production of food crops like cassava, banana, soy bean, potatoes and millet because cash crops had fallen in prices.
Increase in the import industrial commodities in the peripheries as to decrease the stock piles in the metro pole that had lacked the market during the period of severe economic crisis.

The war begun from September 1939 to August 1945; it was fought between the antagonistic imperialistic nations in two camps i.e. the Berlin-Rome-Tokyo axis Vs the allied forces being led by Britain, France, USA and Russia, the Berlin-Rome-Tokyo axis was defeated and surrendered.
The war was a global military conflict that in terms of live lost and material destruction was the most devastating war in human history. It began in 1939 as a European conflict between Germany and an Anglo-French polish coalition but eventually widened to include most of the nations of the world.
It ended in 1945, leaving a new world order of a super powers dominated by the United States and the Union on Soviet Socialist Republic (USSR) the second world war reached in every part of the world in the five continents and in 7 seas.
More than 50 million of people lost their lives in this disastrous war, more than 22 million were soldiers and more than 28 million were civilians. The real cause of this war is not known but most historians concur that it was the combination of factors that led to the outbreak of the world war II.
It was also unique in modern times for the savagery of the military attacks unleashed against civilians, and for the adoption by Nazi Germany of genocide (of Jews, Roma [Gypsies], homosexual and other groups) as a specific war aim.
The most important determinant of its outcome was industrial capacity and personnel. In the last stage of the war, two radically new weapons were introduced, the long range rocket and the atomic bomb.
The Causes of the Second World War
Analyse the causes of the second world war
The Versailles peace treaty of 1919, many world historians do agree that the seed that led to the second world war was sown during the Versailles peace treaty settlement, the Versailles men who had reduced Germany to a military cipher and had reorganized Europe and the world as they saw fit, this created more enemies than friends for example, Hitler promised to overturn the Versailles treaty, for having humiliated Germany to that extent, he secured additional support from Germany peasants, Turkey, Italy too were ill-treated by the treaty and opted to revenge. Thus the outbreak of World War II in 1939
Formation of hostile camps, after the failure of league of nation Germany was very successful to create an alliance with Italy, Tokyo and Japan, thus the Berlin-Rome-Tokyo axis which forced French to form the Anglo-French hegemony which was later on joined by other countries and formed the allied forces versus central power, it was these camps that the second world war was organized it provide confidence and increase enmity between the military camps that made the war inevitable.
Hitler and Mussolini foreign policy, this were characterized by expansionism aggression hatred revenge and domination, Adolf Hitler the leader of the Germany national socialist (Nazi) party, preached a brand of fascism predicated on anti-Semitism and racism. Hitler promised to overturn the Versailles treaty and secure additional Lebensraum (living space).
German people who he contended deserved more as members of the superior race he wanted to make the capital of the world to be at Berlin, this created the outbreak of World War II when they attempted to fulfill their desires e.g. 1935 Mussolini attacked Ethiopia, in 1938 Hitler attacked Austria, 1939 Hitler attacked Poland as that resulted the outbreak of world war II.
Military preparedness and re armament, when Hitler came to power in 1933 having denounced the disarmament clauses of the Versailles treaty, created a new air force, and re introduced conscription, in march 1936 Hitler dispatched German troops into the Rhine land he withdraw
Germany from the league of nations and begun manufacturing more weapons preparing for revenge, this act attracted other countries to do the same thing e.g. Britain and France increased their military budget to prepare weapons. Such military readiness brought tension which brought the war in 1939.
Imperialism, German begin the war because she wanted to regain her lost imperial interesting Africa like in Tanganyika as well as to get more colonies in Africa, for Italy she fought to get more colonies and territories, France wanted to maintain and defend her imperialistic gains from Germany, while Russia was interested in the Balkans and Britain wanted to maintain her status quo as the shark of the sea with the colonial empire.
Factors that led the War to Spread Worldwide
Analyse the factors that led the war to spread worldwide
The Second World War was centered in Europe but after a period of time spread worldwide this was due to some factors; among of them are colonialism, expansion of military alliances, imperialist interests, the rise and spread of socialist and capitalist ideologies in the world.
The Impact of the Second World War on Africa
Assess the impact of the second world war on Africa
Involvement of Africa into the war, some Africans were recruited to fight on the behalf of their colonial power for instance the British colonies recruited the King African Riffles (KAR) to fight on the side of allied forces.
The rise of African nationalism, especially after the return of ex-soldiers who begun to mobilize their fellow Africans to fight against colonialism after getting awareness, it was attributed both on internal and external forces.
Formation of United Nations (UN), especially after the collapse of League of Nations whereby African countries became members of UN especially those that became independent.
Destruction of African agriculture and economic activities, since the war reached in African soil like in Somali, Kenya, Libya and other parts, African property were destroyed.
Intensive exploitation of African resources by the colonialists in order to compensate the losses incurred during the war although this led to large scale nationalism in Africa.
The rise of USA as a leading capitalist nations, which introduced open door policy neo colonialism as compensate what for having not colonized like European nations.
Spread of socialist ideologies in Africa e.g. Ujamaa village in Tanganyika, commons mans charter in Uganda and consciousness in Zambia.
Death and suffering, since many Africans fought on the side of their colonial master, around 100,000 were mobilized in east and southern Africa whereby, many of them died; there was outbreak of diseases and hunger that killed many Africans.
Formation of none allied movement (NAM), this was formed in 1955 in Bandung Indonesia whereby neutral nations who did not belong in side i.e. capitalism or communism.
Collapse of Italian colonialism in Africa, the war marked the end of Italian imperialism in Africa following the defeat of central axis Italy lost her colonies of Libya and Eritrea.
Transfer of mandatory territories to the UN trust ship and the trust territories were put under the supervision of the UN which included Tanganyika, Namibia, Rwanda, Burundi and many others.
Intensification of exploitation in the colonies, measures were taken in the colonies to increase raw materials in the metro pole, a lot of exports were needed from the colonies to rebuilt the war ruined Europe, for example new taxes were introduced, land alienation, forced cropping and processing industries.
Development of rural urban protest, which was attributed to extreme exploitation in the colonies, mass discontent was developed both in the rural and workers in the urban centers who manifested in the form of strikes and riots.
Introduction of new economic, social reforms and social policies in the colonies for example import substation industries were encouraged in relation to education the curriculum was changed and the emphasis was put on hand work and agriculture as to envisage qualitative and quantitative production.
Environment degradation in the colonies, this was due to the over use of the environment during that period as to create enough commodity for export in the metro pole for example land became exhausted.
State intervention in the colonial economy, the colonial state became increasingly involved in organizing, coordinating and controlling commodity production in the colonies whereby it involved in marketing of export commodities by creating export marketing boards for example coffee marketing board in Kagera and Lint marketing board in Uganda.
Activity 1
Do the following Assignment
  1. The First World War did not come as thunderstorm but from clear environment. Discuss.
  2. How did the great depression affect Africa and what were the solutions to the problem?
  3. What was the impact of great depression of 1929-1933 on the colonial economies ofAfrica?
  4. Explain the reasons that led the east African nations to participate in both world wars.
READ TOPIC 2: Nationalism And Decolonization


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