Surely everyone knows that the cause for the First World War was the assassination of Archduke Franz Ferdinand of Austria in June 28, 1914. However, to say that this assassination was the sole cause for World War 1 would be to disregard all that really happened. In all honesty Franz Ferdinand was not a very likeable politician at the time. For him to die would not entail world war. In all actuality it was Austria’s hatred of Serbia that really started the war.
A terrorist group known as the Black Hand carried out the assassination. Although it was not carried out directly by the Serbian government, Austria knew that the Serbs were well aware of what was going to unfold. Although Ferdinand was not a popular political figure (infact he was mostly disliked by his piers), Austria saw an opportunity to wage war on its enemy as an aggressor who wasn’t just a warmonger. They would be responding to the assassination and all the nations of the world would see them as the good guys with a glorious cause.
However, what Austria did not expect was that their aggression towards Serbia caused a cascade of allies to enter the war one by one. France, England, Russia, and Italy joined Serbia, while Austria was joined by Germany, Bulgaria, and the Ottoman Empire. Each country saw Austria’s war as an opportunity to gain some benefits to satisfy their own interests or they were pulled in due to treaties with the belligerents.
The assassination of Archduke Franz Ferdinand was meant to be just a simple act of terror. He was not a powerful political figure to cause war. However, through the political actions of war conducted by Austria all the rest of the world powers for one reason or another jumped into the frenzy. And thus began World War One.