8: WORLD WAR I
Once referred to as The Great War, this global fight centred in Europe lasted for four years, beginning on July 28 1914 and ending on November 11 1918. It resulted in the death of over 16 million combatants and civilians. The war can be attributed to a number of causes such as mutual defense alliances, imperialism, militarism and nationalism. The catalyst that spurred the outbreak of fighting was the assassination of Archduke Franz Ferdinand of Austria-Hungary in June 1914. Debate still abounds today as to the root causes of the war. The closure of WWI is often described as the silence before the storm as the causes of WWII can be traced right back to it.