First World War and Second World War, Comparison

There are many events and occurrences that have shaped the world history. Some of the most significant historic events that had numerous social, political and economic effects on the human society are the first and the second world wars. There have been the epitomes of the 20[th] century and will be underlined throughout human history. There immediate and long term impacts on the social, economic and political structures of the world makes them important landmarks in the world history (Frank, p 4). While there are some differences between the two wars, there are also some similarities. This paper will compare and contrast the first and the second world wars.
The most important similarities between the first and the second world wars are their role in the modern history of the human society. Both world wars involved military contest between the mighty or superpowers which has devastating effects. These effects resulted into political alliances and reorganizations as well as changes in political and social structures in the regions affected or the entire world. As a result, the impacts of the first and Second World War are evident in the modern world. Another important similarity is the involvement of the superpowers of the day in the armed conflicts. This means that both wars involved the prevailing powers or alliances in the world. For example, in the First World War, the European superpowers which included Germany, United Kingdom and Austria, as well as the United States, were involved in the conflict. One the other hand, the Second World War, the United States, which was the superpower of the day, had a meaningful participation in the conflict. It is also important to note that both wars were mainly fought in the European continent (Frank, p 17).
Although the two world wars took place during the first half of the 20[th] century, they can be clearly be distinguished by the military technology used in each war. In the First World War, the military technology in display was rudimentary compared to the Second World War. This is despite the fact that the Second World War started about two decades after the end of the First World War. For example, advanced military technology such as the tanks used by the Third Reich was a crucial factor in the Second World War. On the other hand, Zeppelin invention by the German military played a significant role in the First World War. The military tactics used in the two wars were also different. In the First World War, the soldiers spent long periods in the trenches, thus referred to as the trench welfare. This was due to the less developed war tactics resulting into a stagnant war, since the combat took more than five years. By contrast, the Second World War was based on the strategic air force power of the confronting allies. Although advanced combat tactics played an important role, the main war was fought in the air (Frank, p 54).
Another important distinction between the two world wars was the events that led to the confrontations. The main reasons that led to the First World War and the Second World War were different. In the First World War, the assassination of Archduke Frank Ferdinand, the monarch of Austro-Hungarian Empire, in June 1914 is argued to have triggered the brutal war. The assassination resulted into a diplomatic crisis which destabilized the delicate political balance in the European continent. The timing of the murder coupled with the increased internal tensions among the emerging European powers and quest for dominance made the war eminent. On the other hand, the Second World War emerged under very different circumstances. The war cannot be attributed to particular incidences but rather the ambitions and arrogance of the Nazi Germans leader Adolf Hitler and the Third Reich. Historians have argued that the actions of the Nazi administration in Germany under the leadership of Adolf Hitler made a second global confrontation inevitable (Frank, p 103).
The First World War was fundamentally a conflict within the European continent. However, the rising Asian powers such as Japan as well as the United States transformed the complex global affairs in the late 1930s breaking the European dominance. The event of the First World War destabilized the western economies while the dominance of the imperialistic japan grew rapidly. The attempt by Japan to liberate south East Asia from European colonialists and the United States attempts to protect its strategic and economic interests made the Second World War significantly different from the First World War (Frank, p 14).
In conclusion, the first and the Second World War were important episodes in the history of the world. Although there are some similarities, the First World War and the Second World War were very different. The military technologies and tactics employed and the circumstances that led to the war are very different. In addition, forces outsides the European continent, mainly Japan and the United States were involved in the Second World War, while the First World War was mainly fought in Europe.
Work Cited
Frank, McDonough. The origins of the First and Second World Wars, Cambridge: Cambridge Univ. Press, 1998.

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