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The First World War broke out because of a system of two major European Alliances These started a war due to Germanys ruthlessness and caused a European war Then the nations colonies joined in and eventually all of the worlds major powers had joined in causing the First World War Before the main events of the war two main alliances had been formed Germany had defeated France in the Franco-Prussian war in 1871 3 000 French soldiers were killed 14 000 wounded and about 100 000 captured Most importantly the Emperor Napoleon III was captured Ever since 1871 Germans had been worried that France would attack them so they sought alliances with the other major European nations so France would be isolated By 1882 Germany was allied with Austra-Hungary and Italy in an alliance called the Triple Alliance Then in 1887 they signed the Reinsurance Treaty with Russia Thus Germany was allied with three major European nations and France was left isolated In 1890 the German kaiser set out to make Germany a major world power He aimed to increase the number of Germanys overseas colonies To do this Germany increased the size of its navy Britains Royal Navy was the worlds largest navy at the time so Britain felt threatened and challenged by Germanys naval build-up Also in 1890 the alliance between Germany and Russia was dropped To stop its forced isolation France allied with Russia in 1894 Germany was hence surrounded by France and Russia and they felt threatened The continued increasing their navy making Britain feel threatened also Britain decided to ally with France and Russia just in case Germany attacked Thus the Triple Entente was formed The Triple Entente made up of Britain France and Russia opposed the Triple Alliance which was Germany Italy and Austria-Hungary Alfred von Schlieffen became the Chief of the German General Staff in 1891 Between then and 1905 he gradually worked out
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