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Lecture 4

Week 4 Grenville notes

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Neville Panthaki

1. Over the brink: the five-week crisis, 28 June1 August 1914 there was widespread illusion about course Great War would taketroops left for front believing that they would be home by Christmas, with new mass armies it was thought ttht the war would be decided by devastating battles fought at the onsetno one expected that this would be just another war, like those of the mid-19ng with victors exacting some territorial and financial punishment from vanquished and leading to new balance of power assassination of archduke Franz Ferdinand in Sarajevo on 28 June 1914 was work of handful of Bosnian youths who had dedicated their lives to Serb nationalism and had been greatly influenced b Russian terrorists in exile; they received their weapons from the secret Serbian conspiratorial Black Hand organization; Bosnian youths who had spent some time in Belgrade, had been helped across Serb frontier by Serbian agents st amateur assassins bungled taskon morning of 28 June, 1ed and bomb thrown by 1 of 6 conspirators exploded under car following archduke archduke, his wife and governor of Bosnia drove through open streets again same afternoon, and when archdukes chauffeur hesitated with which way to go, by mere change one of the conspirator found himself opposite archdukes stationary car; he aimed two shots at archduke and governor of Bosnia; they mortally wounded Franz Ferdinand and his wife the assassination of the archduke was unwelcome news to the government, for the king and his government would now be called to account for allowing anarchical political conditions which gave the terrorists their base and power every Austro-Hungarian minister since 1909 realized that the threat to the existence of the Habsburg Empire was due not to the challenge of any of the small Balkan states such as Serbia, but to Russia utilising Balkan discontents against the Dual Monarchy, which is why the misunderstanding and dispute between Russia and Austria-Hungarythe so-called Bosnian crisiswas such a significant milestone on the road to war in Berlin, for two years and more there had been mounting fears about the planned expansion of Russian military power; the weakness of Habsburg Monarchy became increasingly apparent, and there were serious doubts about its future after the old emperors death, which could not be long delayed imperial Germany felt it needed the support of Austria-Hungary if the mass Russian Slav armies were to be checked on 23 July, the Austro-Hungarian ultimatum was presented in the Belgrade and, in just 6 days, Europe plunged headlong from peace to certain war on 25 July, Serbia mobilised its army and, in a cleverly worded reply later that day, appeared to accept many of the Austrian demands, although not to the point of submitting Serbia to Austrian supervision; the same evening, the Austro-Hungarian ambassador left Belgrade and Austria-Hungary mobilised even though the Austro-Hungarian army would not be ready for another three weeks, Austria-Hungary declared war on 28 July, and to make war irrevocable, bombarded Belgrade on 29 July on 25 July, the tsar at an imperial council confirmed the need for preparatory military measures in anticipation of partial mobilisation by 26 July, these secret preparations were in full swing, which
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