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9 Critical Historical Periods I.docx

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Political Science

Lecture 9 Critical Historical Periods I 06122013Chapter 3 International History 190090 Len ScottWWI was the first modern industrialized total war which saw the demise of four European empires Russia German AustroHungarian and OttomanWWII was more global and had more consequences brought USSR and USA to the forefront the importance of economic superpowers the creation of the atomic bomb and the challenges associated with postwar politics Cold WarCold War provided context and pretext for growth of nuclear arsenals that threatened existence of humankindSince 1900 there have been 3 major transitions in world politics 1 Transition from European crises to modern industrialized total war 2 End of empire and withdrawal of European countries from their imperial acquisitions 3 Cold WarTotal war in the sense that whole societies and economies were mobilized as men were conscripted into armies and women went to work in factoriesWilsons Fourteen Points threatened to undermine progress of the Versailles Peace TreatyThe Treaty aimed to provide a framework for European security and a new international order but failed one of the reasons being that it failed to tackle a central problem of European security after 1870 a united and frustrated GermanyoGreat Depression also triggered the appeal of Nazi party as it resolved the acute inflation in GermanyJP Taylor argued that Hitler was no different from other German political leaders but Nazisms ideas of racial supremacy and imperial expansion was what differed him and the stateAppeasement was used by the British and the West as a method to try and avoid war1868 Japan emerged from several centuries of isolationism to pursue industrial and military modernization then imperial expansion 1937 Japan invaded China during Chinas internal civil war between nationalists and communistsoUS economic sanctions on Japan helped to precipitate Pearl Harbor in 1941Belief that national selfdetermination marked a turning point in the attitudes and values in international politics colonialism and UN Charter were seen as incompatibleFactors influencing decolonization attitudes of colonial power ideology and strategy of antiimperialist forces role of external powers
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