WWI & the Russian Revolution


a nineteenth-century movement that stressed the ethnic and cultural kinship of the various Slav peoples of eastern and east central Europe and that sought to unite those peoples politically

supported by Russia and Slav nationalists

total war

war fought between entire societies, not just between armies

included two fronts: the military front and the home front


underlying cause of the war

self-determination, formation of alliances, economic rivalries, colonial competition, public opinion

Triple Alliance

Pre-WWI alliance of Germany, Austria-Hungary, and Italy

Italy, fearful of France, joined the Dual Alliance in 1882, making it into a Triple Alliance


called for the activation of military forces for imminent battle and the redirection of economic and social activities to support military efforts


not supporting one side or the other

Germany’s disregard of Belgian neutrality proviked Britain into joining the war

the U.S., Japan, Italy, and the Ottoman Empire claimed neutrality before the joining the war later on.

“race to the sea”
See Marne

front where there is little to no advancement by either side

stalemate at western and soutern fronts reflected technological developments that favored defensive tactics


a search made for useful military information in the field, esp. by examining the ground.

main function of airplanes during WWI was to provide reconnaissance and prevent the reconnaissance of enemy planes

home front

the civillian “front” that was symbolic of the greater demands of total war (i.e.mobilization of the economy and its citizens to support the war effort)

Japanese entry

joined August 1914 on the side of the Allies after Germany refused to hand over their territory of Jiaozhou to Japan and to withdraw its warships from Japanese and Chinese waters

unrestricted submarine warfare

1917, German resumption of unrestricted submarine warfare was the official factor in the U.S.’s decision to enter the war

Treaty of Versailles

1919 treaty between Allies and Germany

severely restricted Germany’s military, prohibited any political union between Austria and Germany, and forced Germany to pay for the cost of war

Treaty of Trianon

1920 treaty between Allies and the Kingdom of Hungary

Hungary suffered severe territorial losses

League of Nations

Forerunner of the UN, the dream of American president Woodrow Wilson, although its potential was severely limited by the refusal of the U.S. to join

creditor nation

nation with a cumulative balance of payment surplus

has positive net investment after recording all of the financial transactions completed between it and the rest of the world

United States became a major creditor nation for Europe by 1919


belief that every people should have the right to determine their own political destiny

the belief was often cited but ignored by the Great Powers

naval race

competition between Britain and Germany for a superior navy

contributed further to international tension and hostilities

Triple Entente

Pre-WWI alliance of Britain, Russia, and France, 1914

in response to the Triple Alliance

Black Hand

Pre-WWI secret Serbian society

linked to Gavrilo Princip and the assassination of archduke Ferdinand

western/eastern front

western front: ran from English channel to Switzerland, stalemate

eastern front: battle lines more fluid, Russia suffered severe territorial losses to Germany and AH

trench warfare

type of warfare that utilized trenches, or ditches

grim realities – wet, cold, waist-deep mud, gluttonous lice, and corpse-fed rats – contrasted sharply with the ringing phrases of politicians and generals

Treaty of London

the Allies promised to cede Italy Austro-Hungarian controlled territories once victory was secured

encouraged Italy to join the Allies in 1915

Battle of Verdun

1916 battle between Germany and France, resulted in horrific casualties


To maintain the spirit of the home front and to counter threats to national unity, governments resorted to the restriction of civil liberties, censorship of bad news, and villification of the enemy


aka Communism, philosophy and movement that began in the middle of the nineteenth century with the work of Karl Marx

similar goals to socialism, but includes the belief that violent revolution is necessary to destroy the bourgeois world and institue a new world run by and for the proletariat

NEP (New Economic Policy)

compromise implemented by Lenin which temporarily restored the market economy and some private enterprise


peninsula controlled by the Ottoman empire since the fifteenth century

a weakened Ottoman empire allowed the success of many national revolts, including the Balkan nationalities of Greece, Serbia, Romania, and Bulgaria


Russian elected councils that originated as strike committees during the 1905 St. Petersburg disorders

represented a form of local self-government that went on to become the primary unit of government in the USSR


Russian communist party headed by Lenin


a truce

The final armistice: between Allied powers and Germany, took effect on 11 November 1918 at 11 AM (11th hour of the 11th day of the 11th month)

Treaty of Neuilly

1919 treaty between Allies and Bulgaria

Bulgaria ceded small portions of its territory

Balkan regions was spared in fear of destabilizing the region

Treaty of Sevres

1920 treaty between Allies and the Ottoman empire

effectively dissolved the empire

treaty accepted by sultan, but not by Turkish nationalists

mandate system

system that developed in the wake of WWI when the former colonies ended up mandates under European control, a thinly veiled attempt at continuing imperialism

Red army

army controlled by the Communist party

Five-Year Plan

First implemented by Stalin in the Soviet Union in 1929 as an ambitious plan for rapid economic development

a staple of communist regimes in which every aspect of production was determined in advance for a five-year period

opposite of the free market concept


twin provinces that had been under Austro-Hungarian rule since 1908

became the hotbed of pan-Serbian nationalism

Ferdinand’s visit to its capital, Sarajevo, in 1914, resulted in the archduke’s assassination


the tendency to regard military efficiency as the supreme ideal of the state and to subordinate all other interests to those of the military; the principle or policy of maintaining a large military establishment

policy used a lot during the war to keep up with the high demands

Dual Alliance

In 1879, Germany and Austria-Hungary formed a defensive pact that ensured reciprocal protection from a Russian attack and neutrality in case of an attack from any other power.

Germany was afraid of France, & Austria wanted to pursue their Balkan politics without Russia intervention


French military strategy that relied heavily on offensive maneuvers


1914, Austrian ultimatum to Serbia led to Austria-Hungary declaring war on Serbia

1914, the German ultimatum to Russia and the ultimatum to France led to Germany declaring war on Russia

1914, Britain ultimatum to Germany led to Britain declaring war on Germany.

1914, Japanese ultimatum to Germany led to Japanese entry into the war


the German thrust toward Paris (1914) came to a halt at this French river

both sides undertook flanking maneuvers, “a race to the sea” that took them to the Atlantic coast


a wearing down or weakening of resistance, esp. as a result of continuous pressure or harassment

war quickly turned into a war of attrition in which the firepower of modern weapons slaughtered soldiers by the millions

no-man’s land

the deadly territory between opposing trenches

Battle of the Somme

To relieve pressure on Verdun, British forces counterattacked Germany at the Somme.

managed to gain a few thousand yards, for a high cost of human lives


explosive weapon used during WWI

women served an important role during the war by making shells, but the job was highly dangerous

Provisional government

temporary government instituted immediately after the March Revolution

Gained considerable public support for its reforms but failed to satisfy popular demands for an end to war and for land reform

Treaty of Brest-Litovsk

1918 treaty between Russia and Germany that ended Russia’s involvement in the war

gave Germany the possession or control of much of Russia’s territory and one-quarter of its population

Fourteen Points

Woodrow Wilson’s proposal for a just and enduring postwar peace settlement

open covenants, free navigation, removal of all economic barriers, establishment of an equality of trade, reduction in national armaments, equal weight distributed between controlling government and colonial population, and a call for a “general association of nations”

Treaty of St. Germain

1919 treaty between the Allies and the Republic of Austria

Austria suffered severe territorial losses

Treaty of Lausanne

1923 treaty between Allies and the newly established Republic of Turkey

Allies officially recognized the republic


“Land of the South Slavs”, Kingdom of Serbs, Croats, and Slovenes until 1929

example of successful self-determination, although tensions still remained between different nationalities

War communism

The Bolshevik policy of nationalizing industry and seizing private land during the Russian civil war


Process beginning in the late 1920s by which Stalin forced the Russian peasants off their own land and onto huge collective farms run by the state

Many peasants revolted

millions died in the process

Franz Ferdinand

Archduke, heir to the throne of the Austro-Hungarian empire (1863-1914)

his assassination by a Serbian nationalist served as a catalyst for WWI

Bertrand Russell

philosopher who observed that the average Englishman positively wanted war

Wilfred Owen

war poet (1893-1918)

wrote Dulce et Decorum Est

Woodrow Wilson

United States President (1856-1924) who campaigned on a nonintervention platform, but enventually led his country into war in 1917

intensely promoted self-determination and the formation of the League of Nations

Josef Stalin

(1879-1953) leader of the Communist Party after Lenin’s death

Five-Year Plans, The Great Purge, collectivization

Gavrilo Princip
a young Bosnian Serb and a member of the Black Hand (1894-1918) who assassinated Archduke Franz Ferdinand and his wife
Czar Nicholas II

the last Russian tsar (reigned 1894-1917)

Winston Churchill

(1874-1965), first lord of the Admirality (British navy), suggested that an Allied strike against the Ottomans would hurt the Germans

Georges Clemenceau

(1841-1929), representative leader of France at the Paris Peace Conference

Count von Schlieffen

German general (1833-1913) who devised the Schlieffen plan to avoid German war on two fronts

plan called for a swift knockout of France, follwed by defensive action against Russia.

plan failed because Russia reached Germany quicker than what was predicted

Helmuth von Moltke

(1800-1891), former chief of the Prussian General Staff, predicted that future wars would not end with a single battle, because the defeat of a nation would not be acknowledged until the whole strength of its people was broken

Vladimir Lenin

(1870-1924), a revolutionary Marxist at the head of the Bolshevik party

called for the transfer of power to the soviets and an end to Russian participation in the war

Lloyd George

(1863-1945), representative leader of Great Britain at the Paris Peace Conference

1905 Moroccan Crisis

French-German confrontation over Morocco

did not immediately lead to war, but led to increased tensions

British blockade

Britain attempted to deny food to Germany, hoping that starving masses would force the German government to capitulate.

Russo-Japanese War

The unexpected Japanese victory in the Sino-Japanese war increased tensions between Russia and Japan.

1904-1905, Japanese forces quickly defeated Russian installments

displayed Japan’s transformation into a major imperial power

October (November) Revolution

armed workers, soldiers, and sailors, under Lenin’s instructions stormed the Winter Palace

resulted in a bloodless change in power from the provisional government to Lenin and the Bolshevik Party

Paris Peace Conference 1918

many sessions ended in pandemonium due to the conflicting aims of the 27 nations represented

ultimately Georges Clemenceau, Lloyd George, and Woodrow Wilson dominated the liberations

rperesentatives of the Central Powers and the Soviet Union were not invited

Balkan Wars

Between 1912 and 1913, the states of the Balkan peninsula fought two consecutive wars for possession of European territories held by the Ottoman empire.

area was a hotbed

Battle of Gallipoli

British attempt to open a warm-water supply line to Russia through the Ottoman-controlled strait

resulted in a bloody stalemate and eventually an Allied defeat

Revolution of 1905

group of workers petitioned for a popularly elected assembly and other political concessions. government troops shot them down. known as Bloody Sunday.

caused an angry uproar. led to the creation of soviets and to the establishment of the Duma, Russia’s first parliamentary institution

Influenza Pandemic 1918

1918-1919, virulent influenza that killed more people than the Great War

wartime traffic contributed to the spread of the infection

Russian civil war

1918-1920 civil war between the Bolsheviks (Red army) and their enemies (White army)

Red Terror campaign

Whites defeated

Battle of Caporetto

Disastrous defeat of Italian forces by Austrians in 1917

Allied hopes that Italians would pierce Austrian defenses quickly faded.

Armenian Massacres

government campaign in the Ottoman empire to exterminate the Armenians, the last major non-Muslim ethnic group under Ottoman rule

the state viewed Christian minorities as a traitorous internal enemy, who threatened the security of the state.

March Revolution

1917, an uprising of discontented peasants, joined by a mutiny of the troops, persuaded Tsar Nicholas II to abdicate the throne

Great Purge

Between 1935 and 1938 Stalin removed from posts of authority all persons suspected of opposition. The victims faced execution or long-term sufferingin labor camps.

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